The Republic of Turkey is a unitary state; in other words, there are no different administrative regions in it in which different laws apply. It has no “federative” structures. The authority of the Turkish Parliament covers all Turkish territory, and all Turkish citizens are treated equally within those territories. The unitary structure in question is the greatest guarantee of Turkey’s indivisible integrity and internal peace.
The integrity of the homeland expresses the unity, union and indivisibility of the nation that gives rise to the physical structure of the state. The most significant feature of this conception of nationalism, described by the great leader and founder of the republic Ataturk, and therefore known as “Kemalist nationalism,” is that it is based on cultural foundations. Everyone who describes himself as a “Turk,” no matter what his ethnic origins, religion or language, is a citizen of the Turkish Republic. Everyone who shares Turkish culture and considers himself a member of the Turkish Nation, no matter his origins, is Turkish and therefore a citizen of Turkey.
Ataturk never thought of the Republic of Turkey as separate from the nation itself. For that reason, the homeland in which everyone lives is a single integral whole, sacred. Ataturk expressed the principle of the independence and indivisibility of the homeland as “Independence or death” in the Amasya Declaration and as “the homeland is an indivisible whole within the national boundaries” at the Erzurum Congress. This view was adopted in that exact form at the Sivas Congress, with the National Pact becoming a policy adopted by the whole nation. The Republic of Turkey founded under the leadership of Ataturk, with the spirit of the National Pact and the National Independence Army, was established with the fundamental character of a unitary state in terms of both political structure and its citizenry.
The Diversity in Turkey’s Ethnic Make-up is Turkey’s Wealth and Beauty. Ethnic Diversity Never Requires the Impairment of the Unitary Structure of the State
Turkey and the Turkish Nation is a country that throughout history has been exposed to regional and universal threats and to threats from domestic and external enemies. Because of its geopolitical position in international politics and the important role it has assumed, it has always been the target for severe enmities, oppressive and treacherous actions and assaults of various kinds. But the nation has always resisted attacks. Threats of this kind are still present today and people with ulterior motives seek to damage our national unity and union by targeting the indivisibility of the homeland.
Domestic and foreign enemies are today using our country’s ethnic diversity to harm our national unity and union. As is well known, Anatolia is a region where many nations have lived together in peace and harmony throughout history. In particular, by means of the sensitivity on this subject and the just administrative system of the Ottoman Empire, many different ethnic groups lived together in peace in these lands and even fought in the same ranks together. The Republic of Turkey was established as the successor to the Ottoman Empire, in which different ethnic groups lived together. Turks always made up the basic component of the Ottoman Empire, which is why the Europeans preferred to refer to “Turks” rather than to “Ottomans.” But other different groups, such as Arabs, Bosnians, Albanians, Circassians, Kurds, Greeks, Armenians and Jews also lived within the Empire. During the last days of the Empire, first non-Muslim minorities and then the Arabs split away from the Empire and went their own ways. Turkey was founded as a country consisting of Turks, predominantly, and other ethnic groups remaining inside the boundaries of the National Pact. In order to avoid the risk of any further division or fragmentation, Ataturk announced that the fundamental principle of the Republic of Turkey was that everyone living on those lands was a member of the Turkish Nation and that nobody would be considered a minority or “second class citizen.”
Certain Circles Are Raising Artificial Issues in Order to Produce Domestic Conflict
The way that ethnic questions have recently begun being discussed in a heated manner in Turkey is damaging the historic idea of the Turkish Nation’s unity and union which is not based on race, religion or language whatsoever. This is an entirely artificial issue because there is no ethnic problem in Turkey. There is no question of divisions based on language, religion or race, just as there never was in the past. Kurds, Black Sea peoples, Circassians, Jews and Albanians lived side-by-side in peace for hundreds of years under the Ottoman Empire, and have continued to do so in the 88 years since the founding of the Republic of Turkey. Members of these peoples have never wanted to set up their own state or divide the country.
The conception of nationalism summed up in Ataturk’s famous phrase, “ 'Happy is a man who can say ‘I am a Turk’ ” is a most rational one that thwarts all such plans. It is this national foundation that Turkey’s unitary structure rests on. There may be groups with different ethnic origins and whose mother tongue is not Turkish living in Turkey, but these citizens are still part of the Turkish Nation. The laws that apply everywhere in Turkey and to everyone also apply equally to them. They enjoy the same basic rights and freedoms as everywhere and everyone else in Turkey.
The best response to people who make empty statements about Turkey being split up, or adopting a federal structure is these unifying and completely un-racist words by Ataturk, the founder of the Turkish state:
“... Some of our citizens and nationals have been engaged in ideological propaganda about the idea of being Kurdish, Circassian or from the Black Sea peoples among today’s political and social community that is the Turkish Nation. But these false ascriptions of the past, the product of the age of despots, have had no effect on any member of the nation other than to upset a few backward and brainless tools of the enemy. Because the members of this nation, Turkish society, share the same common history, past, moral values and laws.”
The Peace and Happiness of Turkey and the People of the Region Is Possible only through the Protection of Turkey’s Unitary Structure
There have been people in the recent past who have aimed at changing Turkey’s unitary structure and moving to a federal state model. But the concept of federalism is entirely unnecessary for Turkey and an exceedingly dangerous concept. Federalism means members of different nations living within the same state. But Turkey is one nation. If ethnic origin is regarded as grounds for separation, then a process of division will begin, one that nobody can predict where and how it will end. Such a process will obviously lead to tensions, migration and social unease. It is in the interests of everyone living here, and thus a national duty, to defend the unitary structure of the Republic of Turkey. Movements targeting our unitary structure have, knowingly or otherwise, served external forces wishing to weaken Turkey.
The legacy bequeathed to us by our Great Leader is to be a people loyal to the national and spiritual values he taught, who love the nation, motherland and flag, who believe in the nation’s moral values and make necessary sacrifices to protect spiritual matters.
We, and the generations that follow, will be a people who have religious and nationalist feelings, who live for the motherland and the flag, who strive with all their might and main for the happiness of the nation and who defend the sacred concept of the family. It is therefore essential for the nationalist and patriotic Turkish people to strive against those people, systems and ideologies wishing to damage Turkey’s unitary structure and to be ever vigilant against the cunning strategies of duplicitous foes.
Those Who Seek to Impair Turkey’s Unitary Structure Are Supporters of a Terror Organization Based on Communism and Darwinism
The reason why the terrorist organization the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK as it is generally known as, has engaged in various bloody activities in the southeast by deceiving a number of our Kurdish citizens is not in fact based on ethnic foundations at all;. the problem is not ethnic, but ideological. There is only one reason for the current division in the southeast, and that is communism. The PKK ideology is founded on communism and socialism. The reason why the PKK is engaged in activities aimed at obtaining a part of these lands for itself is that it wants to impose communism. But that ideology can never be implemented in a country that has democracy. In order to impose its harsh and oppressive regime, communism needs to install its own dominion on independent and isolated territories.
Division, oppression and strife are inevitable in all the countries where communism is applied as the form of government. History is full of such examples. But the ethnic component has never played any role in that division, since it has always been communist ideology that mattered. Germany and China were divided, and the Korean Peninsula still is divided as a result of communist ideology; there was never a question of different ethnic origins in these countries. But Korea was divided into North and South, Germany into East and West and China into Nationalist and Communist China, in both social and territorial terms. Communists have never had the slightest hesitation about spreading disorder through separatism in order to impose their own ideology, and have undertaken armed struggles in order to secure separate lands and separate countries.
The only thing to be done in order to prevent the impairment of Turkey’s unitary structure is the intellectual demolition of Darwinism, itself the foundation of communism. Darwinist propaganda in southeast Turkey produces new militants and supporters, just like new cancer cells form in a diseased body. This propaganda suggests that human beings are a life form descended from animals. Someone indoctrinated in such a deception will regard human beings, like other life forms in nature, as having no responsibilities or duties. Someone who considers the origin of life from this false perspective will also regard himself as someone who came into this world by chance, and has to fight to survive. And since such people act in the light of fatuous propaganda suggesting that life is a ruthless struggle, as with animals, they will naturally regard conflict and the killing of the innocent as perfectly natural.
For these reasons, it is wrong to consider the events in the southeast as being based on ethnicity. There is a problem, but that is the pipe-dream of trying to obtain territory from Turkey through political struggle, and political means, in order to impose communist ideology. But with the light of the way of Hazrat Mahdi (as) who will be born in Turkey and renowned and loved throughout the world, this devilish plan will never come to fruition. Turkey, where Hazrat Mahdi (as) appears, is under Almighty Allah’s protection, insha’Allah.
Ataturk, a devout believer and genuine Turkish nationalist, described the Turkish nation in the words, “The Turkish Nation is the Turkish people who founded the Republic of Turkey.” In Ataturk’s eyes, the Turkish people constitute the Turkish Nation as a community of people welded together, sharing a common history and culture, and wishing to live together in the future for national principles. In Kemalist nationalism, everyone who considers himself a Turk and has the honor and awareness of belonging to the Turkish Nation, is a Turk. This consciousness is the most important factor in encouraging the Turkish nation to work for the national cause.
Mr. Adnan Oktar Declared That Turkey’s Unitary Structure Can Never Be Impaired in an Interview on A9 TV and Gaziantep Olay TV on 24 May 2011:
ADNAN OKTAR: Turkey has an autonomous, in other words a unitary, structure. We are brothers. Laz people from the Black Sea can serve as governors in Diyarbakır, and Kurds can come and serve as governors in Istanbul. Kurdish doctors go and work in Ardahan, Albanian doctors go to Mardin or Siirt and work there. That is the system. We are brothers. Autonomy: in other words, step by step to where? And things that open the door to corruption, when there is already such corruption around, when we need to be avoiding corruption, cannot be any good. Autonomy; all of Turkey is already autonomous. We are all autonomous. So what does that mean? Our being free and democratic. Democratic government and secularism are enough. Where does this idea of autonomy come from? Autonomy for the Black Sea, for Istanbul, for the southeast… where will it all end? Where did this all come from? We have union, unity and brotherhood. We are a single nation, constituting the Turkish Nation. There is no other nation. If we start worrying about ethnic origins, there will be no end to it. At least 140 different ethnic origins will emerge in Turkey. What does that mean? Let it go. Everyone has black blood, Circassian blood, Abkhazian blood or Georgian blood. They may have Jewish or Armenian blood or Turkish blood. We all have it.
Everyone who says he is Turkish, is Turkish. So there is nothing to argue about. And using language that will encourage strife when there is already strife everywhere is very wrong. What need is there, what is the point? How great if my Georgian brother has gone to Mardin as governor and embraced his brothers there. They must clarify where all this is meant to lead. Why do they not regard this language as dangerous or harmful? Let them tell me that, so I can understand. They must adopt an explicit attitude against division. Let them first discuss division. Instead of talking about autonomy, they should say, “let there be a new arrangement here, freedom, so everyone can be happy.” And “....democracy and secularism must spread right across all of Turkey.” Say that. What does it mean to say we will bring autonomy to the southeast and municipalities? Is that not going to lead to separatism? It will lead to strife, and that is wrong .2011-07-08 18:38:04