Erdogan

Erdogan addressed Macron, but his words were actually meant for the Muslim world

Yasin Aktay

The discussions the new Islamophobic wave has given rise to, which French President Emmanuel Macron is using to conceal the internal political crises in France, though bad in nature are actually beneficial. Even if by means of this opportunity, when such chapters are opened, there is a great deal more that Islam and Muslims have to say to Europe. Whether Europe likes it or not, there is a lot it has to hear from Muslims. As a matter of fact, there is a great deal more that the sleeping Muslim world has to hear from what is being said to Europe on the occasion of such discussions.

When Macron crossed the line saying that Islam needs a reform, the question of which incompetence in his own country he is covering up with such a current affair, is considered to be more important than Islam’s own internal matter. In fact, it is a perfect example that all animosity or fear discourses regarding Islam are related to Europe’s own internal problems. The best example of seemingly “telling France something meant for the Muslim world’s ears” (referring to a Turkish proverb) was displayed in President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s speech addressing the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) meeting. This organization, which is responsible for representing Islam worldwide, presenting a joint defense and cooperation in the event of any attack against Islam, laying all the problems Muslims encounter in the world on the table and presenting a common stance, strategy and solidarity in order to overcome them all, is far from even including the hate speech or attacks aimed at Islam on its agenda. Forget opposing attacks targeting Islam being on the agenda of the organization’s major members, cooperation with those attacking Islam is the more common form of relations and policies they follow.

Yet, the financial and political means the Islamic world possesses are more than enough to prevent these attacks. If just a few of the countries considered gang leaders were to use their influence, Muslims would have no Kashmir problem, no Myanmar problem, no Syria problem, no Iraq or Yemen problem. As a matter of fact, the Palestinian problem would be history, and Islamophobic discourse and attacks targeting Muslims would be impossible. Unfortunately, none other than Erdogan objected to even Macron’s unacceptable discourses.

Are certain Muslim countries insisting on upholding their silence regarding this matter to keep affairs under control because they are afraid of spoiling their relations with France or Europe, or do they willingly embrace this disassociation with Islam?

Their attitude already provokes and unleashes fear in Europeans toward Islam. The Islamic organizations they report to the West are Islam’s most effective and popular movements. Inciting fear toward these organizations is equivalent to instilling fear toward Islam, because they themselves have no association with Islam either.

Never mind that they present themselves as “moderately Islamic.” The “moderate Islam” they represent is in fact something like “no Islam.” As Erdogan fittingly stated: “The main aim of such initiatives led by French President Macron [and supported by these Muslim countries through their policies, sometimes by remaining silent and sometimes through direct contribution] is to settle scores with Islam and Muslims. Rather than fighting terrorism, the aim, under the guise of ‘anti-radicalism,’ is to achieve a passive, pushover, coward Muslim citizen profile sans any claims, who shows no reaction to oppression and who does not speak up against the oppressor.”

The actual presentation of this Muslim profile, which is also supported by Europe, is exhibited by the likes of those who slaughter and dismember their own free citizens at their consulates, and who are far from implementing the practice of human rights with the maximum pressure they apply in their own country, as well as the arbitrary arrests and extrajudicial executions (Mohammed bin Salman of Saudi Arabia); those who savagely massacred 3,000 civilian citizens in one day during a peaceful demonstration, who subject hundreds of thousands of their own citizens to torture in dungeons under inhumane conditions (Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt); and those who killed more than a million of their own citizens and displaced millions more (Bashar Assad of Syria).

While Europe, Macron, or these countries discuss the reform of Islam, they never mention the elimination of such inhumane practices. What they do discuss is the Muslims who oppose these human rights violations, who demand democracy, who advocate Muslims laying claim to their own will and destiny.

Yet, the picture is quite clear, is it not? The perpetrators of the despotic practices in the Islamic world, which are the cause of the deaths of millions, the extreme human rights violations, the massacres, tortures, pressures, and which disregard human dignity are not the Muslims in question.

On the contrary, Muslims are the victims of all such practices. On the other hand, the perpetrators of such oppressions, those who support them and turn a blind eye are talking to us today about the “reformation of Islam.” Do you not think that such subjects being brought up on these sorts of occasions are beneficial? Look at all the contradictions and brazenness that are being revealed.

Posted in