American version of hatred for Erdoğan and its function - LEYLA İPEKÇI

American version of hatred for Erdoğan and its function

The first time I went to the US was through President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's visit to Washington. Since I actually left journalism long years ago, I did not take part in the airplane photo.

Since I did not belong to any “neighborhood,” I did not consider such a thing. Closely watching a leader who was either loved very much or hated intensely,

witnessing the force of attraction and repulsion surrounding him, how fury and beauty formed with those waiting for him in the streets affected me immensely as a writer.

The ordinary, superficial, warm and quickly established neighborhood relationships in everyday American life seem to me to be more surprising than the English version.

Also there was a more enveloping and independent spiritual climate than the European streets which I have been walking a great deal since the 1980s.

In a place where almost everyone is ethnically different from one another, everyone becomes more similar.

Inwardly sincerity, eye contact and wordless cooperation should be had.
Of course for those who did not discover the US as late as I did, these first impressions may come as boring.

But unfortunately, I will connect this humanitarian liveliness with the hatred expressed by the political institutions and people in Washington.


US politics has a pragmatic feature; even in government one single view may not prevail.

However, this country tries to secretly support the countries that are its allies and those it creates conflicts with, during, before and after the war.

In spite of this, the hatred for Erdoğan that developed here was almost the only way relied upon to stop Turkey at some point.

But this humiliating hatred has spread so much that it almost wiped out the pragmatism of some smiling diplomats, journalists or the politicians.

They were talking using memorized lines and acting as if they had no tolerance for looking behind the scenes of events and making an effort to understand.

It seemed that an implied decision had already been made: Erdoğan should go! For this reason if it happened in their country, those who would defend the judgment of the ones who would threaten homeland security – even if they were journalists – were neither trying to learn the details of the event nor trying to explore all aspects.


Most of the American journalists we spoke to as well as the participants who came to listen to Erdoğan at the Brookings Institute had a sarcastic expression on their faces.

A state of sarcastic smile, a kind of dislike and undermining.

How familiar we were with this from our country.

I felt as if I found that my kinsmen not talking to me, not calling me, since I don't hate Erdoğan like them, since I criticize the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) despising me unavoidably, not giving up insulting and treating me as if I failed the test of humanity, who could not stop themselves from personal interference.

A moment when the words fell short, people spoke inside of them and made quite a lot of noise.

Ah, I said in my gut, some who have the problem of “May the state and nation burn as long as our benefits are protected” have already managed to spread seeds of discord into US politics.

Moreover in the lands of this country where they took refuge, their attitude is as if we came to invade their homeland.

Perhaps never being able to learn the inside story, the US perception was a kind of cooperation of hatred with them.

It was a cooperation that brought prestige to its supporters. Just as it happens with us, this feeling that penetrated into the opposition style made them arrogant.

Because of that pride their risk of behaving unjustly increased. With the modesty that I saw on the face of the Americans, this pride formed quite a contradiction.

However the arrogance in his words “we will continue our recommendations on democracy,” US President Barack Obama had to say, not while talking with Erdoğan, but after that, “behind his back,” was an indication that the events were not understood correctly, but he was under the pressure of the bureaucracy relying upon the Erdoğan opposition. (In my previous article I gave examples of press cases which were not evaluated as freedom of expression in America.)


Well what was melting the pragmatism of US politics with this rare statement of hatred? As the “live” signs of the formations as the Democratic Union Party/People's Protection Units (PYD/YPG) are obvious, what should we do rather than question the relationship of US politics with terror and violence since it has been insistently and unconditionally seeing it as a political partner?

Wasn't there a problem of conscience on spending more time on forming a public perception rather than getting closer to the truth?

Both the media and bureaucracy against Erdoğan, here and in the US, do not take into consideration a severe case related to the security of the country in all its aspects but before the case is over they have been owning it at every occasion, making statements and not saying anything aside from freedom of the press. Shouldn't this be considered intervening in the country of those who continue to make suggestions on freedom and democracy?


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