divided? united? split?

 

 

What an awful name for a video. While this 2-3 min video is a shortcut to spectators who are not informed of the situation but paid a glimpse at the news so that they have heard the situation, it also builds much more tension and anxiety than a society can actually handle. If you are familiar with the news and recent history of the Middle East and know about the Syrian situation for example, there is a similarity: a colonial discourse of power/ powerlessness/ arrogance on the video that tries to run parallels with Syria and Turkish governments: ‘no intention to step down’, ‘moment of sameness across all Middle Eastern nation-states’, ‘tales of unity and gigantic monuments, facades… of imperial power taken on by the once-subject of imperialism’. Oh, please.

Those who study Turkish society would know that what matters right now is the collective pain concealed by the facades. It does not matter if one man gives up power or not, it does not matter if there is a change in the focus from one man to another; this one-man discourse is what actually conceals the heterogeneity of actors and forces that have shaped the tension today. It simply turns on the volume of a cheerful roar from the masses that the country is united, that they support the leader, that they have full faith in what is now a a purge with surprise consequences.

Another thing this video misses is the reality of a country beyond the visual media. I am sharing this video’s link after reading the comments under the video: these comments are full of false identifiers: some commenter/audience is concerned whether Turks are Arabs or Altaic or Caucasian or Greek; some respond to the ‘divide’ by stating that ‘we’ are more united than ever -and ‘oh, haven’t you seen the unity in the Yenikapı demonstration’ moment-; some blame Bloomberg and question its legitimacy to make a video such as this. These are all real comments put down there. But I am worried that they are imaginary comments as if statements of pure belief by teenagers who are being lured by the deadly-beauty of the friends of their older sisters and brothers. Some of those who went to the unity demonstrations went there just because they were public employees and cared about not losing their jobs. Some of the enchanting demonstrators were there in the shape of ‘Rabia connection’ with the Egyptian Ihvan, but they also went there to hear their own voices. Some there because they were cab drivers. What does it mean to drive for money in Istanbul’s traffic? Check out some news on 3rd Bosphorus Bridge that is newly built and prematurely opened to traffic: You will get a glimpse of stories on collective pain and disappointment. And this video, as it sums up the events partially, falls short of giving an account of the collective pain. Well, ain’t this failure global?

 

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