It was only until very recently that subjects and concepts such as European values, rights and freedoms, democracy, modernity, development, and science and technology were the go-to headlines of ideological conflicts in Turkey. We saw that when the U.S. and Western European countries in particular launched a new invasion period in the Muslim geography, the mental transformations in question within the frame of Westernization included religious groups as well. Surely, identities were eroding to a significant degree, but as local oppositions were being provoked in terms of Turkey, it had become impossible to stop U.S. liberalism. There was no sense left in discussing ideological differences in Turkey after Feb. 28. Hence, the subjects and concepts listed above were effective in every field.
All studies on FETÖism need to be followed carefully. Analytical studies, in particular, are needed to reveal the damage to our mindset caused by the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), which was previously known as a religious group. Just as they primarily changed those included in their organization, they caused a major transformation in the social domain as well. Focusing on a certain year or an event will be significant in terms of determining the factors that reveal the change. Yet, if we are considering the social impact in light of quite permanent results such as mental transformation, this would indicate the need to focus on ideological losses. This, therefore, shows the need for specificity before generalization.
Considering the difficulty of the subject at hand, I am trying to adopt a very cautious approach, however, the same sensitivity cannot be found in the social domain. Certain organized groups did not really question anything after the major events that took place. Yet, an analysis of the process shows strong signs that FETÖ terrorists continued their infiltration in every field. It would not be very difficult to assess these signs. It might be comforting as a general habit to accuse the political institute of social responsibilities, but we are all aware that this will not change the reality. Unfortunately, there is no specific change of attitude other than the public reaction against a group using religion in their cooperation with the “invaders.”
We can see that the institute of politics is being held responsible in both senses. It may be comforting to accuse the political institute of being responsible for FETÖ leading a new invasion throughout the Muslim geography on behalf of the U.S. and West European states. However, there can be no explanation for standing back or taking sides based on concepts such as victimization and innocence after the same institute launched a total war against this organization. Concepts such as human rights and freedoms, which left their mark on the 1990s, played a catalytic role in the successful implementation of projects supported by global institutes. This thus paved the way for certain individuals and groups, diminishing the dynamism of religious thought. It is very clear that there is no sense in evaluating the damage caused by FETÖ on religious thought using U.S. liberalism concepts. This points to the need for a new perspective. FETÖ members, as well as their substitute individuals and groups, deeply affected religious thought.
The impact FETÖism had on religious thought needs to be taken seriously. In contrast to the present, the liberal-conservative tone used to have a significant impact on religious thought. Clearly, this impact was not over the conservative religious alone. In contrast to local and national concepts, the re-production of religious, national, and sectarian belonging is a pivotal matter. Surely new concepts and approaches are necessary. But what’s more important is the fact that those who have actual initiative are left in the background.
It used to be easy once upon a time to oppress countries like Turkey in the name of Western values. Intellectual groups used to fancy acting on behalf of the West as well. But for the first time, Turkey is calling to account the “democratic” West European countries for backing terrorism. Turkey is forcing these terror-supporting countries to do their homework. This change must be discussed.