Adil lived in Damascus and was kidnapped and, as usual, murdered by the opposition forces funded and supplied by Turkey and America. He was one of tens of thousands of innocent Syrians murdered by Turkey’s bizarre and brutal foreign policy implementer, a prime minister named Erdoğan. Of course, the crimes of Turkey are encouraged and funded by that infamous American “hit list” scorekeeper, peace prize winner and dirty money bagman named Obama.
I never met Adil but I knew members of his family since he was my wife’s uncle. For me, he became the unseen face of all those innocent people being destroyed in the name of strategic interests and, in Turkey’s case, money. It revolted me thoroughly and I despised even more the heads of state that so afflict innocent people in the disgusting name of democracy.
I have suffered through two weeks witnessing Erdogan’s unparalleled brutality and undisguised hatred of the youth of his own country.Today I saw him meet with rich and famous beautiful people who allegedly (and preposterously) claimed to represent the beaten and gassed Turkish youth, Ataturk’s Turkish Youth. A hodge-podge of actors, singers, TV performers and assorted other irrelevancies. Imposters like Sertab Erener, Halit Ergenç and Sunay Akın giggled and gaped, laughing it up with the shameless prime minister. How disrespectful to the thousands of injured, some now blind and to the families of those killed, the man shot dead in the street by the skinny cop with the big pistol. Unforgettable. Unforgivable. How depraved. Is this the real world where nazi robocops are allowed to brutalize the citizenry at the whim of a prime minister too arrogant to see his gaping flaws, to weakened by his power to behave himself? And then this afternoon I heard from Damascus again.
Another member of Adil’s family, his brother-in-law, was murdered the other day. His name was Cemil, married, in his early forties. A chauffeur, he had just purchased a new taxi. Unlike the men in the thousand dollar suits that enabled his death, Cemil worked every day in perhaps the most dangerous profession in the world. What courage it takes to drive a taxi in Damascus! Every passenger a potential kidnapper, particularly if one is driving a shiny new taxi. It’s a simple little war-business. Boom-boom in front of a dark alley. Weapon furnished by the generous taxpayers of Turkey or Saudi Arabia or Qatar or America. Drag the body behind a trash can; it only takes a minute. Five hours later a nearly-new taxi is for-sale in a field in Hatay in southern Turkey, two hundred miles away. What a good neighbor is Turkey and its prime minister. Yes, war is a very good business. For the munitions manufacturers personified by Erdogan and Obama. For the plundering criminals, given a license to kill by the men in the thousand dollar suits. But it’s not so good for Cemil. Or his family. Or anyone, really. For them, no Cemil. No new taxi. He’s in the ground and the taxi is probably in Turkey somewhere. Too bad, isn’t it? It would have been a lovely evening to stroll through the Old Souq, maybe to the Baktash ice cream parlor. But no, sorry. Cemil is a casualty in the war for, or of, or by, or because of democracy. The label really doesn’t matter anymore. What matters is that there will be no ice cream this lovely evening. Or any other lovely evening.
What can one say about this discouraging world where men in thousand dollar suits prosper and the citizens die in the street? What can one say about ice cream, even Damascus ice cream?