Self defense…

YUSUF KANLI

It is rather difficult to understand why some people are so upset with the operations against the separatist Kurdish dens in northern Iraq. If for some legitimate and illegitimate reasons the Americans, Iraqis and Iraqi Kurds for so long could not enforce “state responsibility” and stop northern Iraq from becoming a staging pad for terrorist attacks on Turkey, is it not Turkey’s legitimate right to take whatever measure – including land and aerial operations – required to silence evil barrels directed at the security of Turkish people?

Indeed, should we not ask whether the terrorists still have hideouts there and whether they have been staging cross-border attacks from those hideouts?

Rather than Turkey, that neighboring country must indeed take required measures and silence the barrels directed at the peace and public order of the neighboring country, but if for some incomprehensible reasons some other strategic perspectives, kinship relations or whatever else override neighborly responsibilities and obligations, what other option could Turkey have but to take action itself to eradicate the den of iniquity there? If Turkey is not to provide security for its people, why on earth does it have the second biggest army in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization? Just to stage coups?

Unfortunately, the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, government has neglected the security of our people for so long with the pretext of an ambiguous Kurdish opening, hoping that the opening – which the government failed to provide any direction to anyway – would succeed, separatist terrorism would vanish and the threat to the security of our people would come to an end. Thanks to the defeatist delusions of the neoliberals and the efforts of the secessionist lobby, the Turkish people somehow started to perceive separatist terrorism as some sort of a legitimate tool in politics. Instead, there should be no letup in the fight against terrorism and there ought to be a national, resolute condemnation of terrorism.

Is it possible to understand the reactions of some writers and intellectuals who oppose the operations in the Kandil Mountains? Had they said those “aerial operations are not enough, there is an absolute need for a land operation” I would applaud them, but is it possible to reconcile with reason and goodwill an assessment that the operations “are empty efforts as nothing can be achieved by bombarding the rocks?”

Let us wake up and see some bitter realities. With the pretext of the Kurdish opening, the separatist gang was allowed to establish “recruitment stations” just a few kilometers outside some Turkish cities. A blind eye was turned to the gang’s ID checks in the streets of some southeastern cities and harassment of some people even though such illegality happened just meters away from a military garrison. While security operations were still continuing in the area, under the guidance of a legitimate political party – which is indeed the political wing of the separatist gang – hundreds of civilians were allowed to cross the border with Iraq to pick up the remains of terrorists killed by security forces…

Yes, mothers should no longer weep for their sons… Of course those who lose their lives battling the terrorists and [most of] the terrorists losing their lives in security operations are all our sons… All criminals of this society are our sons also, but we cannot forgive whatever they do just because they are our sons, they have to face the adequate penalty for the crime they have committed.

Finally, the AKP government appears to have learned – Inshallah – that it cannot turn the other cheek to terrorists mercilessly murdering our sons. After all, are not “providing security and ensuring the right to live” the most important duties of a state toward its citizens?

Rather than allowing terrorists to bring violence to our homes, Turkey should fight them at their dens… That’s a requirement of legitimate self-defense.