Ahmet Şık’s Defense


Ahmet Şık spoke in his own defense today. Here is what he said. Dokunan yanar are the words he famously used when he was arrested–you touch them, you burn.


My friends and foes, they both know who I am. 

I am a journalist.

Since my friends know me, some of them are sitting here in this courtroom today to follow the hearing. The majority who couldn’t make it inside the room — including those who stand by me despite knowing me in person – have been out on the streets for months.  That is to say, I am here simply because I am a journalist who is mindful of professional ethics and is in the pursuit of truth. That’s the reason why my friends are right next to me. And of course since my foes know me as well I am here at this courthouse today as one of the detained defendants.

I have witnessed so many things in my profession over the last 20 years. Without exception, I reported everything factually and accurately. I have never made any news under instruction of any organisation, institution or person. I have never resigned from the news that I wanted to cover due to the interference of any organisation, institution or person either. That’s the reason why both my friends and foes know what kind of a journalist I am. It’s not my intention to explain you my professional background today. However, I have to mention what kind of a journalist I am so that some things can be clearly understood.

When I was arrested months ago, I had stated to the court at that time that a journalist had to be the eye of the blind, ear of the deaf and voice of the dumb. I have never given up this principle. Therefore I have never referred to those that were murdered in extrajudicial killings as “terrorists captured dead in battle.” I have never turned a blind eye to the victims of torture. I have never become an accomplice to the lie that those who disappeared in detention did actually “go to the (terrorist) organisation’s camps.” I have never worn a uniform and got on a military helicopter to see the burnt and ravaged villages and then report them as “heinous attack by separatists.” I have never hidden the fact that the so-called unknown assailants are actually the gunmen of the state. I haven’t swum in the pool blooded by the state and then called myself a journalist. I have written and spoken out the things as I witnessed them happening, unlike some others who consider themselves as disciples of democracy and write about these issues only today.

I have never been one of those journalists who report memorandums and notes — namely each and every document – serviced to them by the military or police. I have never leaned back on governments or power groups in uniform or in ties. In other words, I have never acted as a spokesperson for the government, as a police informant or as a journalist at the service of the army. My only endeavour has been to report the truth accurately. That’s what I was simply doing until the moment I was arrested. That’s exactly the reason why I was obliged to explain how I practiced my profession as a journalist here at this courthouse.

My intention is neither to give you an account of my professional background, nor a lecture on journalism. However, giving a real journalism lesson has become a necessity after I saw all the lies being written about me for months in that well-known media. Yet, as a person who knows his place, I prefer not to make any comment on this subject.

I am here today because of a politically-motivated trial which is devoid of justice and law and which is conducted with falsified and fabricated documents.

I will respond to the allegations and the indictment against me, although I don’t want to do so by any means.  Even though I am under detention for more than 10 months because of these allegations and the indictment, I can’t possible take them seriously. Yet I will respond to them, as I bear responsibility towards my friends, my colleagues and the members of the public who have supported me throughout this process. This is a matter of journalistic responsibility. On this occasion I would also like to salute Roland Barthes by citing his words “we are obliged to speak out, not to keep silent;” as I am fully aware of the necessity of speaking out especially in those days we live through.

The indictment which lays the charges reads as follows:

Though not being part of the hierarchical structure of the Ergenekon Armed Terrorist Organisation, having assisted the organisation by preparing an organisational document that serves for the purpose of the organisation and its activities…

I have to respond to this allegation in one sentence: The allegation in the indictment is entirely a false accusation, I deny all charges.

It was the first days of my arrest. Somebody said: “We have very confidential evidence, such that we can’t disclose.” However once the indictment appeared in 6.5 months time we have seen that the so-called confidential and inexplicable evidence was only made up of a handful of police notes – in other words lies — serviced to that well-known media.

Yes, according to the indictment I am not a member of the terrorist organisation called Ergenekon; however it is alleged that I have written a book that serves for the purpose of the organisation. When we ask the question what kind of evidence is taken as a basis for such an allegation, there seems to be three documents: 

  1. A word document entitled “National Media 2010”,
  2. A word document entitled “Sabri”,
  3. Draft texts of my work-in-progress book which I planned to name “The Imam’s Army” (“İmamın Ordusu”). 

It is claimed that these three documents were found inside the computers seized at OdaTV. The last document, my work-in-progress book, was naturally saved inside the computers at my house and my office. There is no other evidence in the file that would qualify to lay charges on me – except for the already mentioned documents.

Let’s put aside my book for a while; who am I to do with these two other documents? I learnt about the existence of those two documents from the media only when there was a search at OdaTV.

The National Media 2010 allegedly describes publishing and broadcasting principles in line with the mission of the Ergenekon organisation. According to this document, the moment you make a criticism about (the conduct of) Ergenekon investigation and prosecution you may be accused of acting in line with this document. That’s what happened in my case. Without any examination of what I have written up until today, my news articles and reports, the book that I wrote on the very same subject and regardless of my journalistic background and my socialist identity; I am being accused for aiding Ergenekon. Whereas even a simple compilation of all that I have written until today including The Imam’s Army will suffice to nullify this allegation.  According to the National Media 2010, “The Ergenekon case is treason and conspiracy.” Again, according to this document “it must be stressed that if the Ergenekon case and similar cases are lost then the pressure will continue to increase.”  And the ultimate aim is “to defend the Kemalist ideology.”

One should either be blind – unable to see my 20 years in journalism profession or biased and ill-intentioned to be able to claim that I wrote a book under such a circumstance. Together with my journalist colleague Ertuğrul Mavioğlu, we prepared a book in two volumes dedicated to the Ergenekon investigation and prosecution. Even a quick glance into these books will be enough for one to understand my standpoint about this process. I have to say that the Ergenekon prosecutor who ordered my detention was not even aware of these books. Whereas in my books my position about the Ergenekon investigation is crystal clear.

As I’ve already expressed in these books; this investigation which fails to try the real criminals based on real charges reminds us the saying “between the devil and the deep blue sea”.  It is a duty for all to speak out against those who push us to take sides in the war of two devils and to pick “neither the devil, nor the deep blue sea” (*“ne kırk katır ne kırk satır”).

My views are also very loud and clear in my work-in-progress book The Imam’s Army. I attach great importance to unearth and expose what’s actually happening within the police organisation as well as the connection between these developments and controversial investigations like this one. That’s exactly the reason why I happened to be a defendant in this case. “Whoever touches (them) gets burnt,” I said to my colleagues, to journalists. I did touch it and here I am.

Getting back to the National Media 2010; today numerous columnists and journalists are raising their doubts concerning the Ergenekon process. Based on the logic of such an indictment, you may well declare all these journalists as members of Ergenekon. It all falls apart at the seams, there is no logic in such reasoning.

I don’t know who wrote the digital note entitled “Sabri” either, which is made up of a couple of sentences. All I know is that what is written in this document is totally unreal. According to this document; some people give instructions to some other people, these other people then give me instructions and I am made to work on a book which is to be published under the name Sabri as its author. 

Apparently the Prosecutor’s Office acknowledged this note as evidence since they made the following statement in the indictment:

“When examined, the evidence obtained from ODATV and from the suspects (…) it has been understood that Ahmet Şık was made to prepare the organisational document named “İMAMIN ORDUSU” (THE IMAM`S ARMY); however, according to the evidence obtained, it has also been understood that there were plans to publish the organisational document outsourced to Ahmet Şık under the name “Chief of Police Sabri Uzun.”

First of all I would like to remind you something. Some very essential elements of prosecution including the collection of evidence in favor of the defendant and reasonable doubt do not exist in this indictment – as is the case in other controversial investigations. This is and should have been the legal duty and obligation of prosecutors. I would like to underline that such deficiencies tantamount to malpractice in terms of the conduct of criminal proceedings. Having said so, let me get back to the prosecutor’s allegation claiming that the book was drafted as part of an organisational activity.

The drafts of the book can be found in the casefile. Can any person of sound mind possibly claim that these books were all about “The Chief of Police Sabri Uzun” or any other third person? How can it be possible to assert such an allegation which is contrary to reason and truth? As can be seen, Sabri Uzun is one of the names mentioned in the book, just like Hanefi Avcı or Emin Aslan. The fact that the prosecutor prepared the indictment only by reading a word document made up of a few sentences and did not feel the need to have a look at the book is very sad and at the same time meaningful.

Yes the prosecutor did read the document; however he failed to ask the questions he was supposed to ask at that stage. Soner Yalçın is shown as the one who wrote the document. According to the document, it is Nedim who made me work (on the book). Fine, but is there any piece of information implying that Soner Yalçın or Nedim Şener gave instructions to me, that made me work? No, there is not. Do I have any contact with Soner Yalçın? Again no. I have never met him in person throughout my life. We have entirely different views and opinions. Only once in my life I got in touch with him, that was in 2008 when they mentioned my wife’s name in the news at OdaTV while they were criticising me; I gave him a call and I expressed my anger about what was done. That’s all.

If we are to take the prosecutor’s claim seriously, the digital document entitled “Sabri Uzun” had been allegedly written by Soner Yalçın. According to the allegation, all that is written in these documents are organisational instructions given to me by Soner Yalçın. As we have learnt from the investigation file, Soner Yalçın had been wiretapped for many years until the day he was detained; there was even bugging. His electronic communication was tracked down as well. He himself was under physical surveillance. What’s more, even the archieves of the magazine “2000’e Doğru” (Towards 2000) where he worked in 1990s were turned upside down in search for hundreds of his articles published in that magazine. Despite all the investigations and searches, has there been any contact — face-to-face or through telephone or electronic messages — established between Soner Yalçın and Ahmet Şık? No, because there is none. This being the case, I am curious about the following question. Did all these instructions come to me as revelation?

What about my friend and colleague Nedim Şener? Is there any evidence proving that he made me work? No. Is there any instruction I received from a third person? No, none. What do we have then? There is only one word document whose author and addressee is unknown and that’s it.

Since the day Ergenekon investigation started, throughout the investigations ongoing for 4 years, we have been asked to believe in the existence of a shadowy organisation, which is said to have caused great trouble and suffering for Turkey at least in the last half-century, and which is said to be behind all the bloody and dark provocative acts. Yes, indeed there is such an organisation. It’s rooted inside the state. It is the state itself with all its elements and institutions. It is called the deep state, the counter-guerilla; nowadays it is deficiently and faultily called “Ergenekon.” While everyone knows that even the most illiterate organisation would take maximum care of secrecy; I couldn’t explain myself how come it is possible to see people’s name and identity so clearly written in the so-called organisational document, which is considered as organisational instruction whose confidentiality is supposed to be taken good care of.  Can you explain this to yourselves? We are talking about an organisation that has been walking in the snow without leaving any trace since 1950s, whose traces are collectively erased by the police, National Intelligence Service (MİT), army, judiciary and politicians every time it makes an appearance. Whom can they convince? How can they ever convince that such an organisation could actually write such “transparent”organisational instructions that breach secrecy?

If this is not called foolishness, then it can be explained in this way: Those who produced these documents wanted to put each and every person, organisation or institution they targeted in the same basket of Ergenekon, which is very far from truly investigating the dark and bloody history of the counter-guerilla in Turkey. In this way, they wanted to create “a thornless rose garden” for their own cause, the ultimate aim of which we cannot fully grasp today.

The last evidence against me is my book work-in-progress. Both the book itself and the notes taken on the book are put forward as evidence for accusations. According to the indictment, the notes taken on the book drafts were actually the instructions given to me. By the way, it is claimed that I had accepted the ownership of these notes in entirety during the interrogation at the prosecutor’s office, but later on it was supposedly “discovered” that these notes were not mine.

At the Prosecutor’s Office, they read me three sentences from the copy of my book they found in the computers of OdaTV and then they questioned me about the owner of these notes. Since they were my notes that I took on my draft book, I told them that “they are mine.” If anyone still has any doubts on that please have a look at the notes that I took in my handwriting on pages 27th to 36th in the appendix case file no 53. As can be seen, the notes taken on the book are the exactly the same notes that I took in my scratch pad in handwriting whenever I was not in front of the computer. When I sat in front of the computer I transferred my notes from my scratch pad to the corresponding passages in computer file.   It’s as simple as that.

After I was arrested, the copies of the book found in my computer were also subject to examination by the Prosecutor’s Office. It is obvious that there were different notes here and that they were not my own notes. In this case, for the newly found different notes, the prosecutor should have called me and should have questioned the owner of these notes. Shouldn’t have?  Of course, any prosecutor who has the intention to seek the truth would act in this way. Should this have been the case, I would have told that these notes were written by one of my source of information and very naturally due to my professional liability I would not disclose the identity of my source of information.  On the other hand, I would have explained the content of each and every note and how they correspond to my work-in-progress book. Then the prosecutor could have easily understood that these were the notes and comments of the source of information and that they had nothing to do with instructions. Unfortunately, since the prosecutor does not have the intention to seek the truth, he did not question me on this. This is how I was turned into somebody who wrote a book under “instructions” with a view to assist an organisation, I use this word in quotation on purpose as this is the name how the prosecutor defines the notes even though they are not instructions at all. I am here accused of “instructions” which are not instructions at all. 

Yes; right from the moment it took shape, I shared my book with my colleagues. I asked for their opinion. I shared it with my lawyers; I asked them to tell me if there were any sections that might be legally inconvenient. I shared it with the editor of my previous book asking the editor if he would be interested in publishing it. As I couldn’t hear anything from him, I sent my book to another publishing house. That editor read my book; he said he didn’t like it. Then I replied him back in a letter advocating my book to the end.  I shared all the e-mail communications concerning this when I made a complaint about my arrest. The fact that all my friends were aware of the book that I was writing can be clearly seen in my telephone records you can find in the file. Now let me ask a question. Is this the way to prepare an organisational document? If there is going to be a book written for a terrorist organisation, is this the way to write it? Is this the way to publish it? Or let me put the question this way: Is it ever possible for a book that is written with the purpose of assisting a terrorist organisation to be so much in public? And to be so much embraced and owned by its author? How can it be ever possible to engage journalists, lawyers, publishers, friends and relatives in such a process? It seems as if I have only neglected advertising it on newspapers. On top of it, the indictment claims that I would have published the book “under the name of another person”. How can I ever publish my book under the name of somebody else after having shared it with all these journalists, lawyers, editors, publishers? Can there ever be such a ridiculous allegation? Yet I have been in detention for 10 months due to this ridiculous allegation.

This is not only a case that puts journalists to trial, but also journalism as a profession. What is violated here is not only a journalist’s freedom of expression, but the public’s right to information. In my book, you cannot find a single line which contradicts with facts, which tarhishes or slanders others. There is not a single sentence that would mean a call for violence, a propaganda of any terrorist organisation or a praise of criminals. As a matter of fact, in the indictment there is no allegation made in this direction. I deny all the charges and allegations written in the indictment.

I would like to once again repeat today what I’ve kept saying since the beginning: What is being subject to prosecution and trial today is the journalism profession itself. It is yet another breach of freedom of expression, covered up with a fig leaf. It is the violation of the journalist’s right, as safeguarded by law, to keep their source of information confidential. Those that claim the contrary are the ones with power and potency who disregard and trample upon the rule of law and instead act with feelings of grudge and revenge. Very openly, they tell us “you can no more write about the subjects that we don’t want.”

No matter who they are and what their positions are, those who express and advocate such a view are overstepping the limits and authority. How else can we explain this? Let’s wait for an answer to this question by the advocates of the totalitarian mentality. However, the answer to be given to such a totalitarian mentality by me and like-minded people is very well-known: “Even if we get burnt, we will continue to touch (them).”

That’s exactly the reason why the profession of journalism is not an impartial one. Once confronted with the right and the wrong, the truth and the deceit, the fair and the unfair, the oppressor and the oppressed and of course with justice and inequity, it is very clear which side a journalist will take. S/he will take the side of the right, the truth, the fair, the oppressed and of course the justice. But now as journalists, we are asked to side up with the right which is not rightful, the truth which is not true, the legitimised which is indeed unfair, the oppressed who is actually the oppresso and ultimately inequity. What’s more they do so by putting pressure and by means of unlawful acts that are covered and disguised by fig leaves.

But is it up to the police officers, prosecutors, politicians to set the limits of reporting and journalism profession, to determine the subjects of books to be written? If this is the case and if we have to talk about it in a courtroom today, can we name such a country who tries to put into place all these rules a democracy? Or is it a dictatorship of fear which aims to rule out justice and to pave the way for a society besieged by apprehension and paranoia? Silencing a journalist would mean silencing the public. And silence is an indispensible weapon of totalitarian regimes which survive by means of fear and oppression.

This trial is yet another example of dooming those that do not keep silent. We are faced with a situation which can be described as utterly nonsense in the simplest term. Despite the lies of a handful of “special-duty” journalists and columnists who believe that they are practicing journalism simply by servicing police notes, everyone else has pointed out how nonsensical this situation is. These big lies failed to disguise and shadow the truth. So much so that even the one who ruled that I was “not a journalist, but a terrorist” by likening books to bombs as well as the mercantilist-minded one who saw all that unlawfulness not as a bow to democracy but as a mere “PR activity” do now remain silent. I do hope that those who speak their mind in such words and by doing so also influence a fair trial remain silent today because they feel ashamed, if they can feel any shame at all.

On the one hand I carry such a naïve hope; on the other hand we do witness more and more examples of how things get much more difficult in Turkey in 2011 day by day for those who take the side of the truth and justice. I am aware that the ultimate aim is to bother, silence and intimidate the real dissidents. That’s the reason why through accusations based on lies and normal activities that can by no means considered to be criminal, dissidents ranging from students to professors, from journalists to publishers are clapped into jails. It doesn’t even matter based on what charges one is accused. As they try to legitimize a weird legal system which uses the following motto: “I lay charges on you and you try to acquit yourself.”

For those who are identified as targets, the judicial process starts long before a criminal offense is committed. The judgment is made well in advance. As expressed by one of the writers of the website named ekşisözlük – a website which is facing the risk of being banned these days by some who are specially tasked to give such prejudgments: Turkey is no longer a country where punishment comes after an offense, but beforehand.

Whereas in the regimes with established democracy and justice, the legal system is based on the burden of proof on the part of the accuser.  And this has to be materialised through tangible and credible evidence whose authenticity leaves no room for doubt.  When we look at the ongoing investigations and the courtcases, which are the most frequently critised cases in Turkey in recent years yet they continue to be conducted and expanded recklessly, can we see obeyance to this fundemantal rule? Or can we say these judicial proceedings are lawful?

Presumption of innocence constitutes the very basis of democracies. Prosecutors are obliged by law to also collect evidence in favour of the accused, just as they do collect evidence against. Regardless of the collected evidence, the arrest and detention of an individual in the absence of a factual, objective, clear and imminent threat and reasonable doubt contravenes the right to a fair trial. Once this tyrant state decides to accuse a person, then one has to wait for 10 months in prison to be able to appear before the court, let alone being acquitted. Shouldn’t a democratic country have to be built upon values such as a fair trial, presumption of innocence, freedom of thought and expression? When we ask these questions, we are told that the reason of the judiciary cannot be questioned. But every time the judiciary gets on the stage, we all suffer from the same problem, from partiality and politicization. Isn’t it the case for everyone in this country?

We know that this is not a recent problem at all, the judiciary of Turkey has always been partial, has always been politicized. Because it has always been the spokesperson of the powerholders of the time and it has always been under the tutelage of their ideology. What’s happening today is nothing more than this. What’s really intriguing is that despite everyone knows this fact the most competent figures keep repeating the same lies: “The judiciary is independent.” And then they offer their counselling in imperative form: “Have faith in the judiciary!”

However, the rule of law is clearly slaughtered, going way beyond the limits of any reason, logic and conscience. Having brought together so many dissimilar suspects, this case has also shown us how “genuine” this supposedly ethical and politically correct attitude is, which expresses itself through the message: “the judiciary is independent; have faith in the judiciary”.  Once again, we have witnessed, experienced and continue to experience the fact that it is not the law that is respected, but the powerholders who keep their tutelage.

The charges laid down in the indictment prepared by the judiciary, whom I am asked to have faith in, are as follows:

“Pursuant to some instructions that allegedly belong to an organisational document and that were allegedly written by Soner Yalçın, who is allegedly the member of the allegedly existing Ergenekon Terrorist Organisation, under the alleged guidance and assistance of Nedim Şener, who has allegedly aided and abetted Ergenekon without being a member, for having allegedly written my book named The Imam’s Army, allegedly an organisational document, under the instructions of Ergenekon and for having allegedly aided and abetted the organisation without being part of its hierarchical structure” 

It is demanded that I am sentenced as a member of Ergenekon.

In response to such a complicated and sententious accusation which is made up of 86 words and which repeats the word “allegedly” for 9 times; the answer to the question “is there any evidence?” consists only of one word with 2 letters: NO.

However even this was apperantly sufficient for them to order my arrest and keep me in detention.

I will not make long explanations about the documents, which are presented as so called ‘evidence.’ These documenst are contradictory and made up. They are unlawful. However I have to mention a couple of things in a case whereby my book – the publication of which was unlawfully prevented – is also put forward as evidence; even though they claim “it is not my journalistic activity that is subject to prosecution”.

My book, which I planned to name The Imam’s Army, was considered criminal evidence based on an investigation minutes prepared by the police, who apparently saw themselves in the shoes of expert witnesses. According to this investigation minutes, which is a sheer example of ignorance based upon lies prepared with the motive to deceive the court, I can list down my criminal offenses as follows:

  • § To be a journalist
  • § To write a book
  • § To take notes while writing the book
  • § To find sources of information while writing the book
  • § To make progress in writing and to increase the number of pages
  • § To keep notes and records of the incomplete sections and to make necessary additions for completion
  • § To have my name mentioned in an unsigned, fabricated digital document

The police compared my book with the word document entitled National Media 2010, which paves the way for the criminalization of journalism and bookwriting, under 6 different headings. According to the first 3 headings, it constitutes a criminal offense to write that Ergenekon investigation is politically-motivated and it targets people who show dissent against the AKP and the Cemaat (the Gülen community), something that proves the saying “the origin of the evil is to be found in the world of angels”. According to the fourth heading, using the expression “partisan media” and asserting that such kind of a media exists is a sufficient reason to qualify as Ergenekon member. Furthermore, any mention of human rights violations including “long periods of detention” can turn a person into a suspect. According to the fifth category, if the things that you write happen to be in accord with the defense of Ergenekon defendants, even only for once, you may face charges. According to the sixth category, from now on criticizing the wrongful and unlawful practices of the prosecutors and police officers who carry out the Ergenekon operation is prohibited thanks to the document National Media 2010.

Although it is named the (police) investigation minutes, it includes so many expressions of certainty and precision such as “it has been understood”, “it has been established” as was the case in the indictment prepared by the prosecutor. However, we need to remember that while collecting documents which may qualify as evidence or potential evidence, the police have to report about the content and the characteristics of the collected document as well the date, place and method of collection.  Assessment of the collected material and documents within the context of penal law is not the duty of the police, but the duty and legal obligation of the prosecutor. Any treatment of contrary nature might constitute misconduct in office and for the police it might mean overstepping authority. This is what happened in the case of my book’s investigation by the police. Police officers, who are clearly the main subjects of my book, had prepared investigation minutes as if they were in the capacity of expert witnesses. This document is called the minutes, however as I’ve mentioned before, it sounds almost like a court verdict. They only fell short of naming the sentence to be given. At this point, somebody must have told them that this was the duty of prosecutors and judges. So the police did not give me a sentence but they listed down plenty of ridiculous details about how I wrote my book, with whom and for which purpose.

In the end, concerning the (police) investigation minutes – which are partial, ill-intentioned and full of lies – I myself had to take action and do something that was actually supposed to be done by the prosecutor’s office as a legal duty, but was neglected for some reason. I compared the latest draft of my book and checked it against with the draft allegedly found inside the Oda Tv computer and against the (police) investigation minutes.

It has become very clear which notes – allegedly referred to as organisational instructions, were taken by myself; which ones are meant to be corrections to certain names, places, dates and events; which ones are the results of a meticulous journalist’s efforts in seeking the truth by means of different sources of information accessed with the urge of not making any mistakes.

I have to stress it boldly that what makes an act a criminal act is not the characteristics of the perpetrator, but the nature of the act in question. Criticism against a certain power group – be it the government, the cemaat (the Gülen community), the judiciary or the police, does not constitute a crime in democratic regimes. Constructing a criminal offense by singling out sentences and detaching them from their real context and matching them with an utterly nonsense text tantanmounts to thought policing, just like the practice of the police officers who undersigned these investigation minutes. And such kind of unlawful practices can take place in dictatorships and fascist regimes, not in democracies.

These are the facts hidden by the investigation minutes of the police, which is shown as a justification to my detention for months and which is biased, ill-intentioned and oversteps authority. This being the case, it will be convenient to make the following conclusion and make a proposal.

The police investigation minutes, which portray my book The Imam’s Army as an organizational document, is an organisational document in itself. If there is any courageous prosecutor willing to uncover this organisation, my book The Imam’s Army will definitely be a pathfinder in this direction. 

Therefore, it is very obvious that this entire process is an ambush laid by the police and a plotted conspiracy engaging some state officials. It is very obvious that all the things put forward as evidence are falsified and fabricated. Actually when everything is so obvious, one should not be surprised about the fact that I am detained in prison.

However the problem is I am accused of being a member to an organisation, with whose mentality, opinions and designated plans I can by no means be associated with. Like I said earlier, I take such an accusation as an insult.

You already know this; this trial which is being conducted with falsified and fabricated documents and which is devoid of justice and rule of law is a fake trial, is a show trial and thus an invalid trial. This is not a judicial trial. On the contrary, it is a political trial. And if you fail to give me a conviction, then you should chase up and convict those who plotted this conspiracy – the real criminals. What you have to do is ‘not’ to prosecute me but it is to reveal the plotters of this reckless conspiracy.

You also know very well that all the allegations against me are made up of lies. Such scenarios are always plotted and reproduced in those regimes and dictatorships where liberties are eliminated along with the law, where the laws and regulations are manipulated beyond recognition. In such regimes, the oppressors send their messages like “they are terrorists” through their own media channels which speak their master’s voice. In such regimes, the partial and dependant public officials who couldn’t have their own share of rights, law and justice go and arrest “terrorists” like me. In such regimes, some media people steal roles from the police, the prosecutor, the judge and they masquareade as executioners. They capture you, they accuse you, they convict you, and they execute you.

Through this trial, the history tells us the story of a power which remains unchanged despite being overthrown again. It proves us that any power which tears down the former, the predecessor, keeps inside the bad seeds of the overthrown. By means of the media, which is very skillfull at taking the shape of any container, psychological war tactics are materialized and democratic opposition is rendered ineffective. By the help of the police and the judiciary, dissidents are unlawfully clapped into jails based on trumped-up charges. In other words, the methods employed by the deep state, which is supposedly investigated under the name Ergenekon, are still in place. It is only the employers who changed, that’s all. However, you need to understand it very well that I myself and people who share my views, in other words people who do not listen to their master’s voice but to the voice of their own reason and conscience, will continue to act against this neo- Ergenekon, which employs the same methods employed by its predecessors. Therefore I find it beneficial to reiterate the obvious fact. Throughout the history, there is not a single criminal offence which remains unaccounted. It will not remain unaccounted this time either. The history will duly place every one and everything into the right place they deserve. Some will be judged based on what they have written and said; some others will be judged on their decisions.

Translator’s Note: For the sake of clarity, some explanatory notes were inserted to the translated text by the translator in parantheses and in italic font.

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    Sandy: I hope your outstanding City Journal article reaches a widespread audience, and I hope, too, that you yourself are not in danger. Is there any indication that western journalists will pay real attention to this? · Jan 5 at 11:27am


    Reporters Without Borders said on Tuesday it was “astonished” at the scale and manner of the detentions, which have “no place in a democratic state”

    The Committee to Protect Journalists has some fire as well for those saying they are not paying attention:

    Declaring that CPJ’s figure provides cover for Turkey’s repression of the press is incorrect. In a letter to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan today, we noted that CPJ research has confirmed that at least eight journalists have been jailed directly because of their work. This number places Turkey among the world’s worst jailers of journalists, just behind Burma. We also condemn the jailing of every single journalist in Turkey because of pervasive due process violations.

    Western governments are the group that is ignoring these events, journalists appear aware..

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    Colin B Lane

    Sandy: I hope your outstanding City Journal article reaches a widespread audience, and I hope, too, that you yourself are not in danger. Is there any indication that western journalists will pay real attention to this? · Jan 5 at 11:27am

    I echo Sandy’s comment and question, and would add a question of my own: Is there anything we in the States can do/should be doing to help Ahmet and you protect yourselves and fight back? A Ricochet Occupy Turkey movement could be interesting but seems a stretch . . .

    What would you recommend, Claire? · Jan 5 at 11:50am

    Something to stress is that it is not just journalists–and I think there’s value to following these cases closely and asking one’s Congressman to do so as well.

    I find the silence of our Embassy in Ankara about this incredibly disappointing.

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    Claire Berlinski, Ed.

    I find the silence of our Embassy in Ankara about this incredibly disappointing. · Jan 5 at 3:17pm

    I imagine the Obama/ Clinton Embassy in Ankara is jealous.

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    I’m not altogether sure what to say in response to that, Claire, but I feel obligated to respond given that some of the more light-hearted threads are getting attention and this issue seems to be getting ignored.

    Nor do I mean to respond in a way that neglects the internal politics or significance of Turkey: for the Turks there that support liberal democracy this must be a very chilling time indeed, and for them and that region generally, Turkey’s fate is of great consequence.

    But for us, I am reminded that whatever the current state of the US economy and however bad this administration—with its micro-managerial job stifling regulations, corruption and executive overreach—accounts like this one ought to wrench us out of our stupor and bickering and remind us what a country looks like when it is actually on the brink of falling into authoritarianism.

    And, sadly, I do not think we’re going to hear our State Department address this issue publicly with the urgency it deserves. Meanwhile, this.

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  5. Profile Photo Member

    I hope your outstanding City Journal article reaches a widespread audience, and I hope, too, that you yourself are not in danger. Is there any indication that western journalists will pay real attention to this?

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  6. Profile Photo Member
    Sandy: I hope your outstanding City Journal article reaches a widespread audience, and I hope, too, that you yourself are not in danger. Is there any indication that western journalists will pay real attention to this? · Jan 5 at 11:27am

    I echo Sandy’s comment and question, and would add a question of my own: Is there anything we in the States can do/should be doing to help Ahmet and you protect yourselves and fight back? A Ricochet Occupy Turkey movement could be interesting but seems a stretch . . .

    What would you recommend, Claire?

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