17 April 2014, Thursday
Today's Zaman

General Staff: Attempts to provoke Turkish military unfortunate

3 May 2012, Thursday /TODAY’S ZAMAN
The General Staff has strongly criticized recent statements by members of the press and by representatives of professional associations targeting the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) for what they call “inactivity” against the government, terming attempts to provoke the military “unfortunate.”

The General Staff said in a statement posted online on Thursday that there have recently been frequent news reports and claims that target the TSK -- which it says is performing its legally prescribed duties in the best way it can -- and which “are thought to be serving certain purposes.”

“We are following with regret and concern such claims and comments which are for the purpose of provocation and which go beyond the limits of criticism and aim to demoralize members of the TSK and hamper their efforts to perform their duties in the best way possible.

“It’s unfortunate that some writers, spokespersons and representatives of professional associations -- by abusing freedom of the press and freedom of expression -- are even making a mockery of military titles, which were honorably held by military men, including our eternal Commander-in-Chief Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, and that they are trying to provoke the TSK and its valuable members with statements and articles that aim to weaken discipline in our army, which is regarded as the most disciplined army in the world,” the statement continued.

The General Staff also reiterated its commitment to the “fundamentals of the Constitution and the parliamentarian democratic system of Turkey” standing against any kind of provocation.

The statement comes on the heels of statements by İstanbul Bar Association Chairman Ümit Kocasakal -- known for earlier remarks in solidarity with suspects in the Ergenekon case, a clandestine gang accused of plotting to overthrow the government, earlier this week. Kocasakal on Monday took aim at the current state of the TSK during a conference on the new constitution held in Eskişehir province.

“We thought we had an army which is powerful and which will protect us. We now have the Turkish unarmed forces. You are now the Turkish unarmed forces,” he said at the conference, titled “Judicial Independence and the New Constitution.”

“We left behind the idea of thinking we have a national army the day we entered NATO,” he added.

Media outlets speculated that the TSK’s statement might also have been a response to staunchly secular Cumhuriyet daily columnist Bekir Coşkun, who criticized the TSK in a recent column, likening military shoulder patches to a dog leashes and accusing the Turkish military of being under the command of the government.

“Then, what is that shining on your shoulder? My leash. What does it do? This is necessary as my owner directs me wherever he takes me. What if I do not want to do what he says? You should do it in return as he is giving you so many things,” Coşkun wrote on April 29 in an article titled “Paşa” (Pasha).

Bekir Coşkun says something very mind boggling and very interesting! He thinks that the military that serves the government (and therefore the people) is abnormal! This is basically the end of kemalism, because people like Bekir Bey have gone beyond rational. Its clear these people are the real enem...
someone (bekir coskun) provokes the military by saying that they are under control of the legitimate government ....
This kind of statements from the President of Istanbul Bar Association is not only sad but disturbing too. As an outsider when I read this news I wonder if the people who voted him in the office did really know the gentleman. Similarly, some members of the press are also heard of uttering provocati...
A. Khan
Click here to read all user comments
NATIONAL  Other Titles
Chief ombudsman laments low implementation of KDK recommendations
'Banning social media disaster for any government's global image'
Nana Zeyini dies at age of 120
Turkey's Gül says candidacy in presidential election not yet settled
92,000 die of cancer each year in Turkey
Ministerial bureaucrats purged after being profiled by MİT
Purges in police force leading to higher crime rate
Four-year-old dies after being found with slit throat, wrist
Report: Naval command allegedly profiles personnel
PM avoids suing critics of corruption out of fear ‘truth may come out'
Armenian Akdamar church restoration nears completion
Ruling AK Party to determine presidential candidate toward end of May
Probe launched into Afyonkarahisar explosion on suspicion of terrorism
Legal complaint issued over Mazhar Bağlı’s hate speech
American journalism school offers free online training in Turkish
AK Party deputies pass MİT law article-by-article despite warnings
AK Pary government punishing reassigned police officers
Commemorations for former President Özal, supporter of Turkish schools abroad
Gag order on case file in Yazıcıoğlu's death lifted
Erdoğan threatens judges, prosecutors in party group speech
Opposition leaders say PM turning Turkey into intelligence state
Opposition CHP leader likens Erdoğan to Hitler, Mussolini
Nearly 90 police officials purged in southeast Turkey
Nearly 280 police officers reassigned in four provinces
Twitter executives meet with Turkey's President Gül