They didn't blame their own states as much as they blamed Muslims

LEYLA İPEKÇI,  Tuesday 09:36, 31 January 2017
The anti-immigrant executive order signed and implemented by new President Donald Trump in America, the land of freedoms, founded by immigrants who came from different parts of the world, presents an amazing lesson to humanity.

It is as if there were not thousands of millions of war victims in front of our eyes ever since the U.S. invasion on Iraq started in 2003 – add to this the invasion of Afghanistan, the Syrian civil war, the anti-Gadhafi period in Libya, the chaos in Yemen, et cetera.

While Western people were sighing over the refugee crisis, they were perceiving the bombs and suicide bombers exploding in their own lands as independent of the politics of their own states that are founded on global ruthlessness.

They did not find an ounce of the fault they saw in Muslims in the inhumane practices of their own states. Because their view of a religion was being legitimized in their consciences with the thousands of perception operations and moderation of hatred.

The reality that millions of Muslims have been massacred worldwide by the West's weapons and conflict-creating policies of the West was covered at the rate Muslims' relationship with violence and started to be considered normal.


Until tens of thousands of people in New York organized a protest to condemn the prevention of Muslims from entering the U.S. at airports upon Trump's decision, countless refugees drowned in the seas, froze on the way, struggled with hunger and thirst, broke down and fell flat on their faces, because Western countries did not fully open their doors.

The way the countries condemning Trump's executive orders today had played with the dignity, capital and savings of the helpless people seeking asylum in their countries during the refugee crisis has not been forgotten yet.

Now, Italy's prime minister, for example, is talking about Western values he lists as open community, multiple identity and disallowing discrimination. As if there could be a Middle East quagmire without the West being involved. As if they have no discrimination policies.


I remember a passenger liner cruising in the Mediterranean some 10 years ago. One night, they came across a refugee boat that was about to sink. Later, the passengers would sue the captain who tried to save the lives of the asylum seekers who were scattered in the sea and about to drown. Because he had gone outside the travel route and unnecessarily wasted their time.

On another occasion, when we had departed from here on bus to help the refugees who had fled to the Syrian border while Lebanon was being bombed, I had shown unnecessary touchiness toward those who had said they couldn't leave their blue voyage and come. Because I would later see it with my own eyes. Because even in Beirut, when one part of it was being bombed, people were continuing to vacation at the beaches on the other side.

This is how the world is. You get used to everything. Even to victimization. Yet, there is also the fact that as long as there are Palestinians being covertly victimized in the world, effort needs to be made to not fall prey to all this oppression and continue to hold on to life. In other words, becoming inured to the effects, not only the oppressor but also the oppressed.


The civilized world cries over the concentration camps and curses the Nazi genocide, while it shows no reaction when the refugees coming from the East are put on trains and deported from their own borders, left out in the cold without food and water. Children's purest dreams are burned and destroyed in the camp fire where the cheap tents are set up.

I had witnessed an incident at a refugee camp in Africa. The little girl who would not take the biscuit I offered her and asked me to give it to her friend in the next tent was also struggling with the illness of her sister in her lap.

Innocent people who walked for kilometers to flee the war were waiting at the camp entrance. Thousands of victims in need of a drop of water, but were restrained at gun point to prevent them from disturbing the peace.

As for Western states, they choose the asylum seekers they will accept into the country from among those that will benefit their workforce and economy. Sometimes they even seize their assets – for tax purposes. The one in power knows perfectly well how to put a damper on the refugees whose lives they save.


One lives under the impact of the words that interest them. For a long time now, global media has been embedding words like civil war, suicide bomber and refugee into our lives. However, these are extremely generalized and become neglected in memories under the yoke of a weird mercy that even fails to touch consciences.

With the perception of reality configured in manmade virtual worlds, digital design units and animation centers, the terrible war happening today can be perceived as though it is not happening.

As we are being kneaded with the assumption that we will never go through the atrocity we are watching, some are being massacred. As we think we are freely using the keys under our fingers, we are giving permission for their death warrants. Without knowing and, if you ask, never willingly.


The Democrat Party's New York senator apparently said – in reference to Trump's executive order – “Against everything evil and American for America and humanity, for our national security.” Perchance they think, the plain, lovable, graceful American citizens, I say to myself. Perchance they want to question, once at least, what is this thing they call “Everything American.” The place of praising violence, discriminating against cultures and civilizations, perception operations, fear policy, colonialism in this “everything.”

Hence, while stating that a legal help line would be opened for the families whose relatives are stopped at the airport as they were about to enter the U.S., the governor of New York said, “Freedom was not achieved through pressure and you cannot protect democracy by violating individual rights.”

Us for example, who risk their lives and are constantly killed trying to stop coup plotters, invasion attempters, mind and heart colonialists to protect our democracy, country and values, we maintain our humanity despite their interventions on our freedom and humanity. Perchance they wonder.

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