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The Earth turns

By Kadri Gürsel
Yayınlanma tarihi: 3 Kasım 2017 Cuma, 16:38

One year ago today, I was being held in the custody suite at the Counterterrorism Branch Directorate in Istanbul’s Vatan Street, along with twelve colleagues from Cumhuriyet.
Cumhuriyet readers know what was done to us over one year. There is no need to give a summary.
Four of our colleagues remain in Silivri. Akın Atalay, Murat Sabuncu, Ahmet Şık and Emre İper.
I walked out on 25 September.
This is the summary of the summary.
Then people got round to asking, “When are the articles going to begin?”
I told those with such concerns, “Soon.”
Not just as soon as I got out; I needed time.
You can imagine the situation of a professional journalist who for eleven months was compelled to follow the domestic media alone, deprived of the opportunity to compare and confirm.
Which stories was this domestic media ignoring, how much did it understand those it was noticing, what were the lies it was inflating, the truths it was playing down and, as well as this, the viewpoints it was pushing to one side and the matters whose discussion it was evading?
I was even able to get the answer to some of these questions while in Silivri.
A reply to certain questions unfortunately remained elusive, though.
The media consists of components that that are under duress and have been left in deprivation and poverty and components that have been bought, have capitulated or have a proclivity towards the regime’s hatchet jobs, and, condemned to this media, I needed to get out of Silivri to find out what I had missed.
I have spent the time since they released me on 25 September until now researching what I may have missed in the eleven months I spent in Silivri.
I was going to start writing, on the other hand, when I felt myself to be ready.
Well, here I am before you today with my first column after a year.
From now on, if I am to make a contribution to Cumhuriyet, this contribution will be restricted to writing articles and I will focus on articles.
My being one of the defendants in the unlawful, unevidenced, irrational and illogical trial as part of the operation being waged against Cumhuriyet will not prevent me from remaining a journalist. Galileo’s story is known.
I will continue to say that the earth turns.
But, not however that the earth still turns in spite of everything. I will just say that the earth turns in a plain sense.
For, we, all my colleagues and I, purely and simply said in court that the earth turns. Having said in court, addressing the political machine that was prosecuting us, “It seems you were right. It is a perversion to say that the earth turns” there emerged nobody from among us to mutter to themselves, “And yet it turns.”
On a programme on a mainstream television station on which I appeared on the eve of the 1 November 2015 General Elections, even though a result emerged from the ballot box that cast a shadow on hopes for democracy under the threat of terrorism and chaos at that time, I said, “Let’s keep our chins up.”
That was a full two years ago.
The disasters in the areas of democracy, the law and human rights that our country has experienced from that day until today are no secret.
Turkey’s situation when I was detained was a little less worse than that of the Turkey in which I was released one year later.
Despite this, I still say today, in spite of everything, “Let’s keep our chins up.”
Because the Earth turns.
One of the names of the Earth in the old language was “devran”. Devran, at the same time, means the epoch and luck. And the devran turns, too.

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