After writing on the Academics for Peace Initiative I decided to go and see for myself what has been happening. It is one thing to write about an issue, it is another to witness it first hand. I will be writing more about what has been happening later on but right now I am going to post a video after a few copies of recent facebook posts. The posts do the explaining. The video… Well, they say a picture is worth a thousand words. I don’t normally ask this but I am begging you to please repost that video on your social media platforms. The world needs to know what is happening here and the big news agencies have been criminally silent.
1/27/16 9:27 AM
The only way to describe my experience here so far is to quote two great individuals, Morpheus and Slavoj Zizek: “Welcome to the desert of the real”
PS. I want to give a great big thank you to the police for deleting about 30-40 photos off my phone.
1/27/16 12:46 PM
To the left of these two boys is a pile containing a household worth of belongings. To the right, their father is walking over with more to add to that pile. I asked the father why everyone is leaving. “We cannot stay. They will kill us if we stay.” I wrote a few days ago that there are about 2,000-4,000 civilians remaining in Sur. Today, as I watch and weep, about half of those are leaving as well. Sur is a bombed out ghost town. [“They”=the police]
1/28/16 9:37 AM
My flight back isn’t until tomorrow, but I am not allowed to leave the hotel since the ban (not curfew as we know it) has expanded to cover where I am.
The headline reads 3 soldiers killed 1 policeman killed. Buried deeper down, 11 PKK killed in Cizre and 9 in Sur, where I am. However, anyone moving around in a curfew area is automatically considered PKK so I’d guess a good chunk of those were noncombatants.
Not mentioned at all is the fact that 2,000 fled their homes from areas police were attacking yesterday and with the expanded ban tens of thousands more will soon be doing the same. I have pictures and will be sharing my story but not until I am back in Istanbul.
1/28/16 12:13 PM
I spent a couple hours watching another steady stream of full trucks leaving and empty ones return into the expanded curfew zone. Finally I left this area and went to see the rest of the city.
What I saw was encouraging. I walked mainly down side streets and back roads. It seemed that every few blocks I would come across another truck unloading. Those in the rest of the city are taking in the ones who are being evicted from Sur. Are they family? Are they friends and coworkers? Or is this just the kindness and generosity of humanity standing against the evil that is happening here? America could learn a lot from them.
1/28/16 4:04 PM
Back at the hotel for the rest of the night. I honestly didn’t know if they were going to let me in as I had to pass two checkpoints. They are letting people leave but not enter.
At the hotel I asked if they needed me to leave tonight. They said it is no problem. They have been given three days to leave. There have been four employees here and since I have been the only person in the hotel, I feel as though they have treated me like royalty. I wonder now what they will be doing for work. Are their homes in the expanded “curfew”? Will they be needing to find new places to live?