Turkish-Jewish Community

Letters on Recent Arab-Israeli Conflict
Arap - İsrail çatısmaları hakkında mektuplar

6 Nisan 2002

Sevgili Türk Kardeşlerim,

Duyduğunuz gibi son aylarda İsrailin içinde Arapların terörü gittikçe arttı. Bu katliamı durdurmak için İsrail ordusu harekete geçti.

Bildiğimiz gibi Kıbrıstaki Rumlar Türklere karşı katliama başlayınca Türk Ordusu haklı olarak Kıbrıs adasının yarısını işgal edip Rumları kovdu, ve vatandaşların hayatlarını savundu. Buradaki vaziyet Kıbrısa nazaran çok daha kötü. Eminim ki Türkiye bu durumda olsaydı, çoktan Türk Ordusu harekete geçerdi.

Aşağıdaki mektuplar bana yollanan ve Türk Internet forumlarında yayınlanan mektuplardır.

İlgıniz, dostluğunuz ve desteğiniz için candan teşekkürler.

İsrael Hanukoğlu

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April 11, 2002

Ecevit Is Wrong In Blaming Israel With Genocide

Turkish Forum does not agree with the Turkish Prime minister's unfortunate characterization that current events in West bank and Gaza constitute a genocide committed by Israel.

Let's not forget; If human bombs are allowed to work in Israel, Turkey may be next.

What wil Mr. Ecevit do then? If he sends in tanks, he will be committing genocide, according to his own reasoning. If he doesn't, then innocent Turkish citizens will die. Genocide or self-defense? Which one?

Turkish Forum regrets the loss of life on both sides. However the recent escalation is a direct result of daily suicide bombings which took the lives of many innocent civilians, especially the killing of 26 worshippers in Natanya, during Jewish Passover Seder.

Passover terrorism and its victims were largely ignored by Turks around the world, which was a sad double standard on our part.

We kept complaining to the world: How come you ignore the Turkish dead in the alleged Armenian genocide? Because they are muslim? Isn't that anti-Turkish bias?

Now others can say to Turks: How come you ignore the passover bombing victims? Because they are Jewish?

What would Ecevit do, for example, if say a Kadir Gecesi gathering is bombed?

Turkish Forum urges Ecevit to apologize to Israel.

Turkish Forum and the people of Turkey greatly values the special ties and the friendship with the Jewish people in Israel and elsewhere and is grateful for the continued support of all the Jewish-American organizations for our causes. We trust that Ecevit's ill-informed and unfortunate remarks, would not and cannot affect the strong Turkish-Jewish friendship, based on shared tradition and history of over five centuries.

Turkish Forum also fully endorses President Bush's call and urges both Palestinian and Israeli leaders to agree on an immediate cease-fire, denounce terrorism, and end the military operations and do their utmost to bring peace to their people and the region.

Peace,

Ergun KIRLIKOVALI, Turkish Forum

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May 30, 2002

MY HEART WITH JEWISH PEOPLE

THIS IS WHO WE ARE, THIS IS WHAT WE BELIEVE. NOBODY CAN TAKE TURKISH JEWISH FRIENDSHIP AWAY FROM US !

TURKEY AND ISRAEL ARE UNITED. NEITHER THE SLY AND DUPLICITOUS ACTIONS OF ARMENIANS, NOR THE INSENSITIVE INTRIGUES OF THE EUROPEAN UNION WILL EVER SUCCEED IN OBLITERATING A 510 YEAR-OLD TURKISH JEWISH ASSOCIATION.

For more than 500 years there has been a very special, close relationship between Jews and Turks. Though they had a friendship there always existed harmony and peace among them in the Ottoman Empire, as well as in the new Turkish Republic founded by Kemal Ataturk in 1923.

When Israel was formed as an independent country 54 years ago, Turkey was the first Muslim state Which recognized its sovereignty. Through the years of Israel's struggles to exist among all Muslim countries, Turkey remained a loyal supporter and friend despite the trepidations of her problematic Muslim Fundamentalist minority.

In recent years a democratic Israel and The Turkish Republic, a determined fledgling democracy, have concluded several military agreements that brought them closer and bonded them together. In the fight against terrorism, Turkey not only sympathize with Israel but it had its own brand of experiences from the First World War days by a fanatical group of Armenians, and again in recent years from the Marxist-Leninist PKK Kurdish terrorists groups.

As a people who have experienced the wiles and deceptions of her vicious neighbors and casualty from terrorists in her own land, Turkey supports Israel in her devastating lethal struggle against terrorism. Turks and Israelis live in a precarious neighborhood. Fate put them close to each other and sanity and common sense, plus a half a millennium friendship are bound to solidify this bond.

Turkish Forum, Turkish and Australian Federation, Turkish Voice, Turkish and American Associations, Tete de Turk (France), Austria Turkish Federation

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16 Nisan 2002

His Excellency David Ivry
Embassy of the State of Israel
3514 International Dr. N.W.
Washington DC 20008

Dear Ambassador Ivry,

On behalf of the Assembly of Turkish American Associations, I send my congratulations on the occasion of Israel's 54th Independence Day.

We sadly witness that this anniversary comes at a very difficult time in Israel's history. We want to assure you of the Turkish American community's continued support to the Israeli nation as the only democracy in the Middle East and a friend of the United States and of Turkey.

We hope that in the nearest future, a negotiated peaceful solution can be found to the ongoing conflict that assures the right of the State of Israel to live in its recognized and secure borders and that brings about peace, social justice, happiness and an environment that is free of violence for Israelis, as well as for Palestinians.

Sincerely yours,

Dr. Orhan Kaymakcalan
President
Assembly of Turkish American Associations
1526 18th Street, NW,
Washington, DC 20036
http://www.ataa.org/


12 Nisan 2002

Sayin Hocam,

Size Türkiye Cumhuriyetinin başbakanının talihsiz açıklaması için üzüntülerimi iletiyorum. Türkiyenin iç politik çıkarlar için ne kadar kötü yönetildiğini bir kere daha vurgulamak istiyorum. Umarim basbakan söylediği bu çirkin ve asılsız açıklamaya kendide inanmıyordur.

Yürüyen bombalarla masum İsrail vatandaslarını korku ve dehsete salan bu teröristlere karsı Israel devleti kendini korumaktadır. Bu bir kendini savunmadır. Türkiyede ve Türkiye dısında olaylara objectiv bir sekilde bakan insanlar bu gerçeği görmektedirler. Ancak kirli politika çıkarları, seçim hesapları için Türk halkının milli ve dini duygularını sömüren politikacılar, Türkiyenin İsrail ile iliskilerini bozamayacaktırlar.

Onlarca yıldır Suriyede, Irakta, Bekaa vadisinde eğitilen teröristler Türkiyeye ve İsrail'e saldırmaktadırlar. Bir çok yönden İsrail in ve Türkiyenin kaderi aynıdır. İsrail devletinin ve halkının var olmak, varlığını sürdürmek için yaptığı bu mücadale devam etmelidir. Bu mücadale haklı bir mücadeledir. Geçmiste olduğu gibi gelecekte de Arapların desteklediği, eğittiği, yönettiği Kürt ve Ermeni teröristler İsrail'den sonra Türkiye ye saldıracaklardır.

Kısa görüslü, beceriksiz politikacılar Türkiyenin ve İsrail in geleceğini tehlikeye atacak tavizkar, teröristleri destekleyici hiç bir davranısta bulunmamalıdır. Teröre verilecek her taviz binlerce masum insanın hayatına mal olmaktadır. Avrupa ülkeleri öyle bir rahatlık içinde teröristlerle birlikte yasamaktadırlar. Amerikaya saldıran teröristlerin büyük bir kısmı teorik eğitimlerini Avrupa ülkelerinden almıslardır. Bugün İsraile yapılan saldırıların ardında da Avrupanin ayakları yere basmayan asırı solcu örgütlerin eli vardır. Bu örgütler de desteğini Avrupa daki devletlerden almaktadırlar.

Umarim İsrail halki bu sıkıntılı günleri asıp, tekrar güvenli ve mutlu bir sekilde yasamına devam edecektir.

Size içinde bulunulan ortam için üzüntülerimi iletiyorum.

Size, ailenize ve İsrail halkına sevgi ve saygılarımı gönderiyorum.

Saygılarımla,

Dr. C. E.

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Sayın Prof. Hanukoğlu

Aşağıda Kanada da oturan değerli bir Türk arkadaşımın Turkish Foruma gönderdiği yazıyı size gönderiyorum. Aydınlarımızın düşüncesini dile getirmiş olması bakımından önemli buldum. Politikacılar bazen ne dediklerini bilmeden şu ya da bu şekilde bir şeyler söylüyorlar. Sayin Polat'in son cümlesinin altina her Türk aydininin imzasini atacağını bilmenizi isterim. Şu anda içinde bulunduğunuz durumdan bir an önce kurtulmaniz icin yürekten dua ediyorum.

En iyi dileklerimle,

A. M.

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Sayin Arkadaşlar,

Türk Hükümeti, İsrail ve Filistin catismasinda gereksiz, tutarsiz ve anlamsiz aciklamalariyla yanlis yapmaya devam ediyor. Basbakan ve Disisleri Bakani, Türkiye'nin cikarlari geregi tarafsiz kalmasi gereken bu olayda, resmen Filistin tarafini tutarak, ulkemizin cikarlarina büyük bir zarar vermekteler. Türk Hükümeti, Türkiye'nin Orta Doğu'daki tek muttefiki olan ve PKK'ya karsi savasta büyük destegini gordugumuz İsrail'e karsi cephe alarak Türkiye'nin cikarlarini zedelemektir. Basbakan Ecevit'in İsrail'i "soykirimla" suclamsini anlamak mumkun degil. İsrail Hükümeti, Ermenilerin sozde soykirim tezlerine karsi cikarak, bize uluslararasi alanda en büyük destegi verirken, Türk Hükümeti gereksiz yere İsrail'i "soykirimla" sucluyor. Ecevit'in bu yanlis aciklamarindan sonra, Ermeni fanatiklerine karsi verdigimiz mucadelede kendilerini her zaman yanimizda gordugumuz Musevi dostlarimiza ne cevap verecegiz?

Ben şahsen Türk Hükümetinin, Kibris'da Yunanlilari destekleyen, bizden sözde Ermeni soykirimini kabul etmemizi isteyen, on beş yil PKK'yi Suriye'de ağırlayan Araplara destek olmasini son derece yanliş buluyorum. Arafat'in Kibris konusundaki Türkiye'yi işgalci gösteren açıklamalarini Başbakan Bülent Ecevit'e ve Dışişleri Bakani İsmail Cem'e yeniden hatirlatmak gerekir.

Eğer Türk davasinda Musevi dostlarimizi yanimizda görmek istiyorsak, İsrail'li yetkililere ve yurt dişındaki Musevi dostlarimiza birer mektup yazarak, Ecevit'in açiklamalarının sadece kendisini bağladığını ve Türk halkinin görüşşünü yansitmadiğini belirtmeliyiz.

Saygılarımla,

Ali Polat


April 5, 2002

Cok Sevgili Mahmut ve Ergun Bey'(ler),

Sizinle acimi paylasma istegim size olan sevgim ve saygimdan kaynaklaniyor. Ortak davamiz uguruna onca zamandir omuz omuza calismis olmamizdan cesaret alarak, duygularimi ve dusuncelerimi sizlere aciyorum. Ve musaadenizle bunu Ingilizce yapacagim.

In the past several weeks we have been witnessing a horrible, bloody war of terror being waged against Israel. Scores of innocent Israelis of all ages, and mostly young, are being blown up to pieces in their homes, buses, restaurants, synagogues, cafes, streets, shopping malls, wedding halls...Many parents bury their children...many children are orphaned...many families are totally wiped out...Along with them many dreams are buried...And despite the persistent Arab lies claiming "victimhood", and the anti-semitism infecting world media, people of intelligence and good will are aware of the homicidal and genocidal purpose of these terrorists and their leaders. What they want is the elimination of the only Jewish state in the world, in order to build the 23rd Arab (terrorist) state in its place (and not one next to it).

But my point is not even that. Last week on the eve of Passover, following the massacre in Israel, the Jewish people around the world, cried around their tables instead of celebrating. We all sobbed instead of chanting, as Israel bled. Did we, as members of Turkish Forum and the many Turkish Associations, send messages of sympathy and offers of condolence to the many Jewish organizations (in America) who have so faithfully supported, assisted, lobbied for and voiced our cause? Please tell me we did - and that I did not hear about it.

When we incessantly challenge the Christian world for their double standards, and demand equal recognition for Muslim terror victims, can we ignore Jewish blood being spilled in Israel (just because the perpetrators happen to be Moslems)? If we remain silent, and we don't care, how on earth are we going to have the moral right to challenge the world? How are we going to face those Jewish organizations, let aside ask for their support in the future? If we fail to do what we demand others do, namely to say "terror is terror for whatever reason or by whoever is the perpetrator", how on earth are we going to campaign in the future? What will be our line?

It is those feelings that I decided to convey to you, two distinguished men I so respect.

Before I was finished expressing these painful thoughts, it came to my attention that Prime Minister Ecevit defined Israel's war in self defense, as a "genocide". I am deeply wounded. The following is my letter to Mr. Ecevit. My pen was crying when I wrote it.

You can share it with fellow friends @Turkish Forum. Politicians are politicians, and they may have their various (and questionable) interests and reasons for their unacceptable statements, but it should not be so for grassroots organizations. We should have the will and the courage speak up and do the right thing...

Sevgi ve saygilarimla,

Rachel Krespin

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April 5, 2002

Mr. Bulent Ecevit Prime Minister Republic of Turkey Ankara

Dear Mr. Ecevit:

Today I lived one of the biggest disappointments of my entire life, when I was informed of your recent remarks defining Israel's war against terrorism, in pure self-defense, as "genocide". I feel very betrayed and shocked.

I am a Turkish-Israeli-American who spends her entire life in the fight against defamation of Turkey, writing tens of letters every week, trying to counter the many virulent attempts of Greeks, Armenians, Kurds, etc. who all claim "genocide". My life's work is invested in efforts to present and represent the Turkish values and principles, in past and present.

Characterizing myself as "a child of Ataturk", who I think was the greatest leader in human history, I always tried to live up to his image and his legacy. And Mr. Ecevit, I must say that I spent my entire youth in Turkey, supporting you as a statesman.

Presently I am a member of Turkish Forum, Daughters of Ataturk, ATAA, FTAA and AAJFT (American Association of Jewish Friends of Turkey). As members of these distinguished organizations in America, we do all we can, to better the image of Turkey in the world. And we do not do this alone. It is the help, support and firm stand of countless Jewish organizations that give us credibility and make our cause heard. We repeatedly quote Israel's Foreign Minister Shimon Peres' denial of the "Armenian Genocide", when we make our case. It is Turkey's firm stand against terrorism that we defend. It is Europe's friendship with terrorists that we condemn. It is Turkey's strong alliance with Israel and USA that we voice - all in order to demand the placement of Turkey in her rightful place among the civilized and democratic nations.

Let me humbly remind you Mr. Prime Minister, Israel is fighting for her very existence, and despite the shameful lies of Arab world, she certainly is doing that honorably. But of course, a person of your caliber should know that. Many wars have been waged against Israel, since the first hour of her establishment - all with the sole purpose of her destruction. The present bloody war of terror has no other goal. Arabs are murdering scores of innocent people in their homes, buses, cafes, restaurants, synagogues, wedding halls, streets, shopping malls, every day and sometimes a few times a day. And they are doing it because they do not want Israel there, not because there is an "occupation", Sir. They were offered statehood on 95% of these so-called "occupied territories" last year, and they rejected it. Just like they did in 1948-1967 when there were no "occupied territories".

Permit me Mr. Prime Minister to ask you a question: if countless young people were blowing up, beyond recognition, in the streets of Ankara, Istanbul, Kars, Edirne or Diyarbakir, what would Your Excellency do? Would you serve your nation by sitting idly and doing nothing? Would you not mobilize your great army to defend Turkish nation? If you have some good advice, please do call Mr. Sharon and offer it to him. But of course history shows how heroically Turkey defended herself from her enemies. You even took the war all the way into Cyprus and Iraq to protect Turkish lives. Don't you think it is highly hypocritical to deny the same right to our ally, Israel?

Arafat is a terrorist, no less than Ocalan, and he certainly deserves to share his fate.

In our vigorous anti-Armenian, anti-Greek, anti-Kurd campaigns here in America, on behalf of Turkey, we usually ask the (Christian) world: Is it because the terror victims are Muslims, that they are being ignored? Now, I ask you: Is it because the terror victims are Jewish (and the perpetrators Muslim) that you should ignore them? Or is it that you are trying to bring Turkey to European standards, starting by imitation of their anti-Semitism?

Israel and the Jewish people around the world have faithfully stood by Turkey through all her battles and campaigns, both military and political. And you, Mr. Ecevit, have betrayed Israel. And you betrayed me.

Of course, despite your (or any politician's) failure to stand by a real friend (and truth), will not derail my efforts on behalf of the people I love, but I am wounded.

Sincerely,

Rachel Krespin Fairfield, Connecticut USA

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SAYIN PROF. MAHMUT OZAN'DAN RACHEL KRESPIN'E YANKI

Dear Rachel,

This is what happens when I am away from my desk for a whole day. I missed your immensely moving letter addressed to me and to Ergun Kirlikovali. What can I add to the most eloquent words of Ergun?

Let me assure you, however, dear friend , there have been very few times in my whole lifetime when I was as much infuriated as I am now having heard about the utterly irresponsible bungling , blunder, slip-up, faux pas, folly, misjudgment and the miscarriage of justice all committed by one opinionated Turkish Prime Minister called Bulent Ecevit.

I learned about this only an hour ago and it is past my bed time. So I'm sending you this quick note in a hurry . It is to me as sad an occasion as the one which requires sending almost my sincere condolences not only to you, but to the unfortunate Turkish people who have to endure under Ecevcit's governance. They say that "an hour of pain is as long as a day of pleasure. And for this opinionated man also goes my 'sympathy' alongside my disappointment in him. Because: "An opinionated person is a little island of complacency anchored in a sea of prejudice.

I think Oscar Wilde said it best when he wrote the following: "Misfortunes one can endure -- they're from outside. They are accidents. But to suffer from one's own faults -- Ah! there, is the sting of a lifetime!

This is just to console you for tonight. I'm going to write you more tomorrow, but tonight I share your agony along side the pain experienced by all my Israeli friends who were, I am sure, as deeply wounded as you are. Neither Ecevit nor anyone else can destroy a five centuries-old Turkish Jewish friendship and the sense of brotherhood we all share.

Mahmut Esat Ozan, The Turkish Forum

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Subat 21, 2002

Sayin Hocam,

Nihayet size yazabildim. Size kendimi biraz da olsa tanitmaya calisayim; Ben Kimya Muhendisiyim, Istanbul Teknik Universitesinden 1983 yilinda mezun oldum.

Uluslararasi politika, ozellikle ortadogudaki politikalar en cok ilgilendigim alanlar. Bugun Ortadoguda neler olup bittigine farkli bir sekilde bakmaya calisiyorum. Suphesiz sizin de cok iyi bildiginiz gibi tarihsel gerceklerden yola cikildiginda, pasif gorunumlu ancak icten ice Arap milliyetciligini butun ortadoguda su veya bu sekilde kabul ettirmeye calisan asiri milliyetci Araplarin aktiv birsekilde calistigi gorulmektedir. Araplar, İsrailin direnmesi ve Turkiyenin arap milliyetciligine karsi politikalari sonucunda amaclarina varamamislardir. Hemen butun Arap ulkeleri kendilerine bagli teror orgutleri kurarak amaclarina ulasmaya calismaktalar, oyleki direk olarak İsraile veya Türkiyeye savas acmaya ne gucleri nede cesaretleri yetmedigi icin bu yontemi secerek amaclarina varmaya calismaktalar. Türkiyede ve Türkiye disinda yasayan bir cok Türk Araplar hakkinda ve Ortadogu sorunlari hakkinda artik boyle dusunmeye baslamis durumdalar.

Dunyadaki hemen butun terrorist orgutler Araplarin petro dolarlariyla beslenmektedir. Oyleki IRA, ETA gibi orgutler bile Libyanin, Suudi Arabistanin destegini daima almislardir. Suudi Arabistan, Libya, Irak dunyanin en tehlikeli ulkeleridir, teror onlarin parasal ve insansal destegiyle devam etmektedir.

İsrail devleti halkini korumak onun guvenligini sağlamak yükümlüdür ve oyle yapmak zorundadir. Bazi Avrupa devletleri baristan, insan haklarindan bahsetmektedirler; oyleki teroristlerin oldürdügü masum İsrail vatandaslari veya PKK nin oldürdügü Türkiye vatandaslarinin hic onemi yok onlar icin. Olaylara kendi cikarlari cevresinden bakmaktadirlar. İsrailin bugünkü tutumunu elestirenler Araplarin neler yaptiginada cok iyi bakmak zorundadirlar. İsraili elestirmek yerine terorün her türlüsünü kinamak daha dogru olmazmi?

Sonuc olarak İsrailin varligini ortadan kaldirmak ve onu bolmek icin icin her türlü yola bas vuran Arap teroristleri bu eylemlerini karsiligini odemek zorundadirlar.

Tarih boyunca bircok basariya imza atmis İsrail halkinin bu cok ciddi sorununda üstesinden geleceginden hic süphem yok.

Umarim günün birinde sizinle karsilasir o cok genis bilgi ve tecrüblelerinizden yararlanma firsatini bulurum.

Size saglikli, basarili ve baris dolu günler dilerim. Hoscakalin.

Saygilarimla,

C. E.

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