A lot of things were going on yesterday. In Frankfurt, Blockupiers were coralled all day by a ridiculous amount of police without food and water, then charged for protesting. In London, thousands showed up for an antifascist demonstration. In 200+ cities in Spain and abroad people participated in the same old demonstrations against the troika. And in New York, over a thousand people descended on Zuccotti for a bit of Occupy Nostalgia.
That’s not even all of it. It doesn’t matter. The only thing that really counted, yesterday, was Turkey. Once again, all throughout the day and the night we have been trying to piece together what was going on. It was useless. A continuous torrent of rumours, pictures, exhortations, etc. And not enough streams. All I can do from here is try to give you the general outline.
The morning march across the Bosphorus was met with police brutality and tear gas. This went on for most of the day, around Istanbul, in particular in Besiktas, and elsewhere, in Izmir and Ankara. Taksim square was flooded by the people.
Reported internet jamming and power blackouts made it difficult to communicate what was happening. I can only guess how many people were wounded, but I won’t do so. In Ankara an armoured police vehicle charged the crowd at full speed. At least one man was allegedly kill when he was run over by a water cannon truck.
All day long, the people occupied Taksim. In the evening and the night, clashes continued around the country. From the side of the police it was all out chemical warfare on the population. The streets were littered with tear gas cannisters. The cities were shrouded in toxic vapours. Shortly, authorities must run out of stock. They have already been using tear gas that expired seven years ago, which makes it much more dangerous. Some of the gasses they used were orange. It caused hysteria in the social media, as the government was accused of using Monsanto’s infamous ‘Agent Orange’ to quell the protests.
During the night, once again there was city pan bashing in Istanbul. Heavy clashes were reported in Ankara and Izmir. Not for a moment have the people abandoned their streets to the police. When the morning broke, police was gone, but the people were still there. And as if to show their moral superiority, they began to clean the rubble from the streets themselves. The drizzle did the rest.
It was victory. Now for the cleanup of government. Prime minister Erdogan has ordered people to stop protesting at once. And the people have ordered him to resign. He is not their master, he is their servant. And he will be held accountable, and responsable, for all the suffering that authorities have caused in the past few days. The Turkish people are fed up of being tear gassed every time they express their dissent. Police brutality must end.
One judge already ordered a temporary halt to the demolition of Gezi Park. The shopping mall that is supposed to be built there would take the shape of an Ottoman army barracks. Maybe, instead of a barracks, we can build a retro Ottoman prison somewhere. A dark and lurid dungeon. A place to lock up mr. Erdogan, for crimes against his own people.
For more background check these blogs:
For more photos check Reuters: