Turkish Fans Disrupt Moment of Silence For Paris Victims With Boos and Calls Of Allahu Akbar

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 6.58.59 AMUsually moments of silence are solemn and dignified events that can help heal wounds left in the aftermath of tragedies. Two such occasions this week however show how they can leave troubled feelings in their wake. The first blown event was G-20 Moment of Silence for the victims in Paris. The problem is that it turned out to be a G-19 Moment of Silence because President Obama walked in late. While one would hope that this deeply symbolic moment would be sufficiently important to get the President there on time, problems can occur. Yet, this President has been criticized for years for being consistently late to events, which shows a lack of respect as well as organization. This is one of the worst such failures in a long line of delayed arrivals. The second incident was far more disturbing in Turkey.

Before the soccer game between Turkey and Greece, the officials called for a moment of silence for the Paris victims. The response from Turkish fans was to start yelling “Allahu Akbar” in Istanbul and booing the expression of sympathy for the hundreds of dead and wounded victims of the attack by Muslim extremists.

The scene at the Basaksehir Fatih Terim Stadium in Istanbul was deeply disturbing and Turkey manager Fatih Terim was quoted as saying: “Our fans should have behaved during the one minute silence.” That is an understatement.

I understand that, like American football games, fans at soccer games are not necessarily the best behaved crowd. However, this raises more obvious concerns for many who have watched changes in Turkey under the current government. The attacks have been widely condemned by Islamic scholars and groups — making this response even more disconcerting.

It is deeply concerning that, even with a disgusting massacre of innocent people like the one in Paris, many fans would still see their allegiance with the murderers due to religion. It also deepens the concern of the impact of the disastrous tenure of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan who has fueled the rise of Islamic parties in that country. 220px-Recep_Tayyip_ErdoganWe have been following the gradual erosion of Turkey as a symbol of secularism in the Islamic world under Erdogan. Erdogan was elected by Muslim parties and has steadily broken down secular traditions and introduced more and more Islamic influences in government.

I often write about my great love for Turkey and Istanbul, a city that defies description for its beauty and history. I have been fortunate to visit Turkey and I have met many Muslim civil libertarians and secularists who have bravely resisted the encroachment of religion into their government. Erdogan has destroyed the one major Muslim country that showed that it was possible to have separation of mosque and state in a Muslim nation. The result seems to be a rise in extremists like those seen at the game. We have seen the same trend in countries like Pakistan where the government seeks to encourage but control religious parties despite rising extremist elements.

Unfortunately, this moment of silence spoke loudly about the direction of Turkey under Erdogan.

93 thoughts on “Turkish Fans Disrupt Moment of Silence For Paris Victims With Boos and Calls Of Allahu Akbar

  1. OK. I get that. I may be confused. But to reiterate, Kennedy did not “fundamentally transform” America’s course in Vietnam in the entire 1,000+ days he was in office. There will always be speculation and spin about the course Kennedy would have taken. My point is irrefutable, while he had 1,000+ days to do so, Kennedy did not materially alter or abruptly reverse course, 180 degrees, in Vietnam. He could have and he did not. I’m gonna take a wild guess that Country Joe And The Fish, for example, would have immediately ended any and all activities in Vietnam after 1 day in office, not 1,000+.

    “…read the transcript of the Oct. 21, 1960 debate that I cited. It may clarify for you the candidates’ positions and JFK’s subsequent actions.”

    There is something inherently wrong with a. listening to a politician, and b. believing a politician, especially during an election campaign. Nixon had 8 years of briefings and experience with Eisenhower and the Shadow Government as the Vice freaking President, while the playboy, Kennedy was partaking of dalliances and possibly receiving lessons on how to liaise with the Mob. I can’t account for political presentations in debates. I could care less. Bill Clinton told everyone that he “never had sex with that woman” and that Flight 800 experienced a “spontaneous fuel tank explosion”

    (BTW, we’ve flown the same plane with the same in-tank wiring for decades before, and for two decades after Flight 800, and every other in-flight, at-altitude-disintegration, by every other make and model of plane, was caused by a bomb – exactly how confused does the govt. think we are?).

    Funny, you’re probably of the school of thought that JFK was a hero on PT109 when it was he, his ego and his incompetence that caused his boat to be cut in half killing and endangering his crew. And what kind of war hero implores his father, the Ambassador to the Court of St. James’s, to finagle him the perilous assignment of taking a ski boat vacation in the South Pacific? Seriously? Talk about confusion.

    The only thing of significance that the cunning, well versed and experienced John F. Kennedy accomplished in 1,000+ days, was America’s sheepish removal from Turkey of vital electronic intelligence equipment used to spy on the USSR, in exchange for Khrushchev’s removal from Cuba of something Khrushchev installed in Cuba. Oops. Sounds a lot like Khrushchev roundly deceived and squarely dismantled the nerve and resolve of one John F. Kennedy, the naïve, ill-prepared, arrogant and egoistical, boy-President. Final score, Khrushchev 1, Kennedy 0 (holy geez, that sounds familiar in the current environment).

    • To forgotwhoiam……If you can cite something from any of my comments that claims JFK fundamentally transformed the Vietnam War, do so.
      The 500-1000 troops Ike had in Vietnam, or the 16,000 troops Kennedy added, were not disproportionately crazy commitments.
      As opposed to the 500,000 ground combat troops LBJ added.
      The green light given to the coup overthrowing Diem was probably JFK’s most notable and consequential game changer in Vietnam. Rather than stabilizing the political situation in S. Vietnam, it ushered in a protracted period of multiple coups.
      I’m not sure what makes you think that I view JFK as a hero. Any aborted presidency is tough evaluate.
      His early stumbles with the Bay of Pigs and the disasterous Vienna meeting with Khrushchev stained his first year in office, to put it mildly.
      By 1963, I think he was becoming a good president.
      His speech at American University, the speech in West Berlin, and his TV address on civil rights (once he got on board and decided to seriously push for legislation in that area), went far beyond campaign promises or political posturing.
      I’d describe his record as “mixed”. For maybe 10 years after his assassination he was damn near canonized, but by the mid-1970s more realistic views of his record emerged.

  2. Duly Posted On This Date

    Enough Contempt.

    May it be known that I, forgotwhoiam, just remembered precisely who I am, needless to say, ending my confusion, and that I, from this point forward, shall be known as John.

  3. For those who think that HR 4038 means we are rejecting all refugees (and are completely racists weenies), here is a link to the actual bill:


    Which requires, “that supplemental certifications and background investigations be completed prior to the admission of certain aliens as refugees, and for other purposes.”

    Which sounds completely reasonable to the vast majority of people, since Syria is a training ground for terrorist organizations like ISIS, and Paris just suffered 6 coordinated terrorist attacks, of which one of the perpetrators claimed to be a Syrian refugee. And since many of the “refugees” are lying about their origins and are neither Syrian nor refugees.

    Again, most of this rhetoric is emotional, and not based on fact.

  4. It states that no refugee can be admitted until the FBI certifies they are safe, and there must be agreement between the FBI, and Director of National Intelligence. It basically requires these organizations to work together and share information.

    So…what’s the problem?

  5. At least one of the terrorists behind the Paris attack claimed to be a Syrian refugee. I say “claimed” because as we know, many people dumped their original identities and claimed to be Syrian refugees in order to gain easy access through immigration.

    ISIS claimed responsibility, saying “this is only the beginning.”

    And there are more than 8 people in the US that oppose a bill that will require vigorous screening, transparency, and cooperation among intelligence organizations in order to be very careful about who we let in? Really?


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