Türkiye'nin en iyi köşe yazarları en güzel köşe yazıları ile Hürriyet'te! Usta yazarlar ve gündemi değerlendiren köşe yazılarını takip edin.

Who is next?

"First they came" is a poem attributed to Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892 to 1984) about the inactivity of German intellectuals following the Nazi rise to power and the purging of their chosen targets, group after group.

More than half a century on, a controversy is still continuing on the origin of the writer of the "First they came" poem. Some claim that it was written by Bertolt Brecht, some say Milton Mayer reported it first in his famous 1955 book "They Thought They Were Free," based on interviews he conducted in Germany. Many believe the sentiments expressed in the poem could be traced to speeches given by Pastor Martin Niemöller in 1946.

There is a controversy as well regarding the wording of the poem, both in terms of its provenance, and the substance and order of the groups that are mentioned in its many versions. Of the various versions of the poem, I would like to present here the version that I like most:

First they came
When the Nazis came for the communists,

I remained silent;

I was not a communist.

When they locked up the social democrats,

I remained silent;

I was not a social democrat.

When they came for the trade unionists,

I did not speak out;

I was not a trade unionist.

When they came for the Jews,

I remained silent;

I was not a Jew.

When they came for me,

and by that time

there was no one left to speak out.

Ergenekon’s 10th wave!
Compared to the previous nine waves, the 10th wave of detentions and house searches Wednesday within the framework of the so-called "Ergenekon terrorist gang probe" was perhaps the strongest and most papers said it was like a tsunami.

Although at the July 1 wave, two retired full generals were detained, in this latest wave two retired full generals, one retired lieutenant general, nine active senior officers, scores of professors were detained and, for the first time ever in the history of modern Turkish Republic, the residence of a former chief prosecutor of the Court of Appeals was raidedÉ It was indeed a tsunami.

What’s happening now appears to many people some sort of a re-enactment of the notorious parliamentary interrogation commission practice applied by the former Democrat Party, or the DP, to scare and silence the opposition. It is obvious that Turkey is sailing full steam toward a crisis.

The people detained or their houses were searched Wednesday have nothing in common except their strong commitment to secular modern democratic republic and they are all known as staunch patriots and die-hard opponents of the ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP.

You might be next
Seeing police at your doorstep must be a very strange feeling... Particularly if you are not officially charged with anything and the police detaining you have no idea why they have ambushed your house or officeÉ It must be a very difficult momentÉ Scary, is it not?

It has become crystal clear that the Ergenekon trial is not a judicial case. We are very much worried that what we have now seems to be a political vendetta of the AKP against its opponents and in that campaign the Islamist Gülen brotherhood organization within the judiciary is being used as a tool.

Reactions of the society to the shocking detentions demonstrate as well that such worries are shared by the Turkish public. We are very much worried as well with the continued silence of the military regarding the detention of three more generals and scores of active officers.

Including those who have been so critical in the past of the top generals talking on domestic political developments are now suffering labor pains to learn what the generals think of the latest detentions but the military is dead silent on the issue. This is not at all a promising sign.

The drift toward crisis was accelerated with the latest detentions.
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