Filed under: the city | Tags: ahmet atakan, direngezi, gezi events, gezi movement, gezi park, state violence
Yesterday, the Turkish state killed another youth. His name was Ahmet Atakan, he was only 22 years old. The police shot him in the head with a tear gas capsule, and he died in the hospital. Despite the misinformation campaign of the media, we all know the truth.
I am writing this post to note this murder into history. I am writing down to remember. Last night, after the news broke, Ozgur Mumcu wrote: “They are claiming the era of political homicides without unknown suspects are over. Yes, it is over. We know who the killers are now.” An astute legal scholar, he is also son to Ugur Mumcu, a politically active journalist who was killed by unknown suspects.
Ahmet was only 22 years old, and he was protesting against injustice. I am sure he was at the most promising era of his life. I remember my 22-year old self. It was a year of breakthroughs: I finally started to really know myself, I laid ground to my biggest achievements, and I started my personal emancipation. Remind yourselves what you were doing when you were 22, and look how far you have come after that. This way, you will understand more deeply what Ahmet Atakan lost. This way, you will better realize what as a community we are losing.
I am also writing this post in order to remind one thing myself and the Others. I will occasionally go back to this piece, and please you do, too. We will never forget that by September, the state have killed 6 young people from the Gezi movement in 2013. Justice and Development Party supporters did not think these deaths were to cry for. The government did not take the responsibility, and continued blaming the protestors for corrupting peace. Worse than these, some people stayed silent and challenged neither the government nor its supporters. Let’s come back and remember who cheered when Erdogan, or any of his alikes, screamed words of violence, greed, and revenge to the microphoenes.
I will. And I will repeat this post every year, and it will pop up on your screen, on every September 10. And when it does, please do come back to this moment, and remember that the state killed Ahmet Atakan, some didn’t take the blame, some supported the crime, and some didn’t even speak about it. And when you are back at this moment, please once again remember who this “some” consisted of.
We owe this to Ahmet Atakan, and the others killed by the state.