A Turkish media classic: Execution without trial

Turkish media never stops slandering, belittling, sometimes exposing, judging and convicting the legitimate struggle of the Kurdish people.

On June 9, HPG guerrillas carried out an action on Van’s Gevaş district security directorate, and announced 7 policemen were killed and 4 others were wounded. The same announcement also said that the guerrilla unit that carried out the action had reached safely to their positions.

After the action on the Gevaş Security Directorate, AKP arrested 4 people who they claimed carried out the attack, and battered and tortured them. The governor’s office issued a statement and said that the “perpetrators admitted to the action.”

AKP spin-doctors shared the three tortured men’s photos on social media and praised torture and violence. Shortly after the photos spread out, it came to light that the men in question were villagers out foraging for mushrooms. But the spin doctors and the will that guides them did not show any will to correct this wrong. Then, the court announced the verdict proving the villagers were not “terrorists”.

Looking at the incident from either journalistic ethics or human rights points of view, what happened is clearly an execution without trial.

The Turkish special war media’s culture of execution without trial is not new, for sure. Especially with news regarding Kurds, the hidden racist codes dispersed throughout stories, news and comments praising the current government’s particular massacre policies expose the true face of this media. All “statist media” that claim they are right-wing, left-wing, religious, liberal or any other political tendency never hesitate to come together in a reflex against Kurds, despite all their “opposition”.

In short, as a habit from the past, Turkish media never stopped slandering, belittling, sometimes exposing, judging and convicting the legitimate struggle of the Kurdish people. But it’s not like they could if they wanted to, because everybody knows that you can’t be the “statist media” and not abandon all moral norms, beginning with journalistic integrity.

Of course things don’t always turn out like one wants. We all know the ill fate that befell the special war units disguised as journalists who were expecting to receive high honors from the state. One of the most recent examples is Enis Berberoğlu: Berberoğlu started in journalism during the September 12 period, worked as an administrator in several media companies and then he was elected to the parliament.

We remember him from the photographs he posed for on top of the Goman mountain, during the revolutionary people’s war period in 2012 filled with examples of the guerrillas’ controlling the land. He had posed for a photograph where he was sitting at a nicely-decorated table set up on top of the mountain to hide the intensity of the war and make it seem like there is no actual war in deed, during the year when the guerrilla prevented the soldiers from ever leaving their barracks.

Then, for reasons unknown, he attempted to position himself straight across the wave he had been serving, and was targeted by the AKP for playing a role in the MİT trucks story. And then, yesterday he was arrested by the AKP judiciary.

The important thing is not what Enis did, for sure. The important thing is the obligation to be a representative for such contradictory thoughts and movements. Like unabashedly lying “when necessary”, as a journalist, and then claiming you represent The Truth.