I read a very interesting piece about the protests which have been sweeping across the major cities of Turkey. It seems that if you hold a people down with a heavy authoritative fist, they will eventually rise up and strike back. In this case, the Turks are doing so peacefully - despite the very violent attacks by the police forces.
Let's check out how the mood of the people has changed in Turkey. It reminds me alot of the Occupy protests we had here in the USA. Join me below the Kospaghetti.
“Well, we are just filling light bulbs with paint,” said my friend, a cafe owner in Cihangir, the Soho of Istanbul. Speaking to me on the phone, she sounded as relaxed as if she was baking an apple pie. “You know,” she continued, “the only way to stop a TOMA is to throw paint on its window so that the vehicle loses orientation.”An ingenious thing these paint-filled light bulbs. Throw a few of them onto the windshield of a TOMA - a water cannon vehicle - and you blind the occupants' from seeing where to aim their cannon.
And while the methods being used will harm nobody, what strikes the author of this really cool and informative article from which I'm quoting is the change in the mood of the people. Before the protests started, people lived in fear of what their government might do to them if they spoke against it. People were being jailed because of what they were saying.
Now, much of that has changed - at least among those who are actively protesting. It seems as though they have thrown off the yoke of oppression and are calmly going about the business of changing their government and their society. In fact, the Turkish People have united as never before:
As a writer and a journalist I followed the Egyptian and Tunisian uprisings. As I wrote at the time, Arab people killed their fear and I saw how it transformed them from silent crowds to peoples who believe in themselves. This is what has been happening in the last six days in Turkey. Teenage girls standing in front of TOMAs, kids throwing tear gas capsules back to the police, rich lawyers throwing stones at the cops, football fans rescuing rival fans from police, the ultra-nationalists struggling arm in arm with Kurdish activists. . . these were all scenes I witnessed. Those who wanted to kill each other last week became – no exaggeration – comrades on the streets. People not only overcame their fear of authority but they also killed the fear of the “other”.When people who were once at odds with each other unite to become a larger group at odds with their government - change is in the air. Good change.
My final "fair use" quote from this article - which you really SHOULD read - is moving:
In Taksim Square, on the building of Atatürk Cultural Center, some people are hanging a huge banner. There are only two words on it: “Don’t surrender!”Good advice for them. And for us.