Roger Waters sings for the Resistance in Turkey

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During “The Wall” concert series which are known to be the biggest concert production in the world, Roger Waters played in Istanbul tonight at the ITU Arena, filled with thousands of Pink Floyd fans. He dedicated his songs, and particularly ” The Wall” to the victims of the state terror in Turkey and on the background, there were the pictures of the people who were killed during the Gezi protests.

Below are Roger Waters’s words supporting the resistance in Turkey:

“To all my friends in Turkey

I am with you! We are with you! You are so right to resist the forces of autocracy and repression.

… It doesn’t matter who they are.

If I read the Internet right, in your case, you are resisting autocratic religious zealots.

Turkey is your country and we support you and yearn for your freedom, but also, you and your struggle are so important to the rest of the world.

Every time a man or woman or child takes to the streets, and stands up for human rights, for self determination, for democracy, for Mistress Liberty, the rest of the world is in debt.

We are not physically with you in the water cannon’s fire, in the tear gas clouds, but we are with you in spirit.

We applaud your stand for we know it is not easy.

Your great country stands at the gateway between east and west. Constantinople is legend in the history of civilization. Your resistance today may well be a turning point between all of us and a return to the dark ages.

THERE IS NOTHING MORE IMPORTANT THAN WHAT YOU ARE DOING TODAY:

With love, and tears, and huge respect,

Roger Waters.”

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For the original article in Turkish: http://t24.com.tr/haber/roger-watersin-duvarinda-gezi-damgasi/236084

#London4taksim

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Today was a very busy day in London for those who wanted to show their support for democratic rights in Turkey.

Article 19 organised a stand-still protest outside the Turkish Embassy to commemorate the 7 people killed during the protests.

http://www.article19.org/resources.php/resource/37180/en/stand-still-protest-outside-turkish-embassy-to-remember-7-dead-in-gezi-park-protests

People from Turkey who have been concerned about what’s happening in Turkey also organised an arts, music and performance protest outside the Tate Modern and on the Millennium Bridge which then continued at the Turkish Fest at Bernie Spain Gardens further down the Southbank.

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The placards and costumes of the participants were particularly colourful and showed the creativity of Gezi spirit. There was a woman with a sign “my bump is not ugly”. Another was dressed in a zebra outfit holding a sign reading ‘out with the penguin, in with zebra’ [during the worst of the violence government controlled media broadcast documentaries about penguins instead of showing the news]. There were musicians in gas masks and balloons with #london4gezi hashtag.

The following text is taken from the leaflet distributed at the performance event:

Who are we?

We are people from Turkey concerned about what’s been happening. Once a week we hold forums to find ways of supporting the resistance. Join the conversation and stand with us in solidarity.

W: www.londongezi.wordpress.com

E: londongezi@gmail.com

T: @londongezi

To sign the petition for the UK government to condemn the violence: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/51112

The information provided in the leaflet is as follows

Let’s talk turkey!

Is freedom of expression not a natural right?

Does one not need green spaces in a huge metropolis?

Should we not be free to choose our lifestyles?

Not according to the current Turkish government!

Two months ago, environmentalist protesters were brutally attacked by the police as they defended Gezi Park in the heart of Istanbul. The government had gone ahead with the demolition of the park despite the court’s ruling against it. Images of state violence spread through social media and millions hit the streets in support of the protesters. Yet the government would not listen and continued to escalate the violence and lawlessness.

5 killed, 9000+ wounded, and 12 have lost eyes after tear gas canisters were fired at their heads. Countless protesters have been arrested.

Today, the witch hunt still continues

For treating the wounded, doctors are criminalised.

For defending the detained, lawyers are arrested.

For writing the truth, journalists are sacked.

Every day brings some new attack from the ‘usual’ water cannon and tear gas combo to or a more subtle ones on lifestyles. Pregnant women are just one recent target. Their bumps render them ‘immoral’ according to a leading religious thinker who says they should stay at home.

Today’s action is to bring the voice of the Gezi Park resistance to London.

Their demand for democracy must be heard.

 

For coverage of the performance in Turkish press, see:

http://www.hurriyet.com.tr/planet/24410576.asp

http://www.radikal.com.tr/hayat/gezi_ruhu_londrada_tate_modernin_onunde_flash_mob-1143790

http://www.bursadabugun.com/haber/londra-da-tate-modern-onunde-gezi-parki-protestosu-264603.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/turkce/haberler/2013/07/130728_gezi_londra_2.shtml

http://www.f5haber.com/hurriyet/londra-da-tate-modern-onunde-gezi-parki-protestosu-haberi-4087452/

http://www.turuncutime.com/dunya/129184-londra-da-tate-modern-in-onunde-gezi-parki-protestolarina-destek-icin-toplandilar.html

http://t24.com.tr/haber/londrada-tate-modernin-onunde-gezi-destegi/235438

http://www.internethaber.com/londrada-geziye-destek-eylemi-565253h.htm

http://www.alemihaber.com/radikal/764112/gezi-ruhu-londrada-tate-modernin-onunde-flash-mob.html

http://www.sol-haber.com/londrada-tate-modernin-onunde-gezi-destegi.html

http://www.tarafsizhaber.com/haber-Londrada-Tate-Modern-onunde-Gezi-Parki-protestosu-47616/

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Music to celebrate the release of Taksim Solidarity members

20 members of Taksim Solidarity has been released tonight. The demand for their arrest has been rejected by the court. We would like to say this is the end of it, but that would be extremely naive. 

Toussaint Liberator, a raggea musician from the USA made this song dedicated to Recep Tayyip Erdogan – in response to the occupy movement and police violence…also in response to Erdogan’s speech in which he said “they [referring to protesters] think we are illeterature, ignorant, bottom layer, people who should be content with what’s given to them, in short, [they think] we are niggers” [zenci in Turkish, instead of siyah which would be translated as black]

Chapulcunun Oykusu – The Story of Chapulcu

This little home-made film is a testament to the creativity that comes with this resistance. It tells the story of the word ‘capulcu’ meanings including looter, galloping horses and of course, now, those who stand up for their freedoms.

The lyrics of an old folk song are adapted to tell the story.

Let’s be chapulcus….

“So long as we are free”

“So long as we run free”

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OKg8wjhEetg

Gezi has given us so much

Lots of our friends in the UK email or call us to express their sadness about what’s been happening in Turkey.

 

The 5 deaths, 7000+ injuries, still many critically ill causing concern about the death toll increasing and 100s, if not more, in detention, unfathomable violence by the police force and civilian thugs and what more lies ahead are without a doubt incredibly sad.

 

But these protests are also a positive thing. It’s hard to ensure they stay peaceful and are sustained. But for sure they have started a new era.

 

There are of course many well thought out, evidence-based and eloquently expressed writing about what Gezi has given us. But we’ve found this list on the social media. We don’t know who’s written it.   This, we repeat, is not to belittle the cost of Gezi but we wanted to share it.

 

Gezi has given us so much

 

  1. We stopped watching TV. We woke up. Our IQ increased.
  2. Our writing and drawing skills and sense of humour improved.
  3. We became fitter thanks to running up the hilly streets or stairs leading to Taksim; resisting by running, walking, jumping up and down, standing; and not eating much from the excitement of the resistance.
  4. We improved our observational skills to find the right information and our memory to remember it until we found a computer.
  5. Protesting took all our time; we didn’t have time to spend any money.
  6. We’ve had something to believe in, we are not bored any more.
  7. Yesterday was Monday. No one felt the Monday blues. Long Live Mondays!
  8. Smart phones and social media became nuisance for some but for us they’ve become an opportunity to show our disproportionate wit.
  9. Facebook was filled with interesting and sublime shares.
  10. We gained the habit of turning up where an event is taking place, rather than reading it in a paper.
  11. We’ve learnt who is brave, who is sold, who is honorable, who is a kiss-ass, who is self-respecting, who can be bought, who will not be sold, who just talks and who keeps their word.
  12. We’ve seen we are the majority and stopped feeling alienated.
  13. We increased our freedom and knowledge.
  14. Our musical and rhythmic skills improved from clanging pots and pans, chanting slogans and singing marches.
  15. We are more conscious about keeping the streets cleaner because resisters kept cleaning and reminding us to do the same.
  16. We smile more, behave more politely and respectfully towards each other, because resisters do the same and keep reminding us to do the same.
  17. We learnt what ‘civil defence’ is from practising it.
  18. We learnt to stand by each other, to help each other, to share, to sacrifice, to be friends / siblings.
  19. We’ve learnt that our true friends really do not let us down.
  20. We’ve seen and experienced that our parents were behind us, and if required, they were in front, defending us.
  21. We’ve used our ‘disproportionate’ intellect in every possible opportunity…when moving protest didn’t work, we had standing man and woman.
  22. All tricks were outed.
  23. Copy and paste (in facebook) has become a habit.