GYV President Mustafa Yeşil answers questions about the Gulen movement

GYV President Mustafa Yeşil speaks at Friday’s international coexistence conference in İstanbul. (Photo: Cihan)
GYV President Mustafa Yeşil speaks at Friday’s international coexistence conference in İstanbul. (Photo: Cihan)


Date posted: March 26, 2013

March 26, 2013

Hizmet does not expect anything from the political authorities. Our only expectations are that the EU process must be kept alive and democratization must be achieved; that rights and freedoms are improved; that the ongoing fight against military tutelage is completed; and that the new constitution materializes. We do not even want to think about this last effort not being successful.

Neşe Düzel of Taraf newspaper interviewed Mustafa Yeşil, Head of the Writers and Journalists Foundation, about the Gülen movement. The interview was published on May 7, 2012. The movement was exposed to another defamation those days. Ms. Düzel asked all the questions anybody wants to learn about the movement and its dynamics. HizmetNews is publishing this long interview in English, as those questions are still asked and it seems that they will be asked in the future.

WHY MUSTAFA YEŞİL

Lately, a much-disputed topic in Turkey has been the government-Movement (aka “Hizmet”) conflict. The fact that the head of the National Intelligence Service (MIT) had been summoned for interrogation by specially authorized prosecutors due to the Oslo negotiations with the PKK has further damaged this relationship. As a result, the Movement was compelled to issue two long statements. Previously showing up before the media to discuss its achievements, for the first time it has deemed it necessary to explain itself in relation to the state and politics; to tell where it stands; and to explain what it is trying to accomplish.  We therefore talked with Mustafa Yeşil, one of the Movement’s forerunners, about what it is, how it works, its schools and hostels, who its members are, whether some of them can be found among the police and the public prosecutors, appointments to the police force, and the claims of flagging. He was also asked about the Movement’s role in the arrest of Ahmet Şık, the summoning of the MIT secretary, state-politics-Movement relationships, the MIT crisis, the government-Movement conflict, why Fethullah Gulen criticizes the AKP and Prime Minister Erdogan, and whether the Movement supports the government’s Kurdish policy. Thus, for the first time a newspaper has interviewed someone other than Fethullah Gulen on behalf of the Movement. Mustafa Yesil, head of Writers and Journalists Foundation, one of the Movement’s most important institutions, graduated from Marmara University’s Faculty of Divinity and was Zaman’s representative in London.

NEŞE DÜZEL: Are you a member [participant]* of the Gülen Movement?

MUSTAFA YEŞİL: If such a term is used for people who have benefited from Mr. Gulen’s feelings and ideas, and who have adopted them as a principle and ideal, then yes, I am one of these people.

How did you join the Movement?

I actively started participating in Hizmet after I graduated from college. Before that, I attended an Imam-Hatip school. During my middle school years, I knew Hocaefendi (respected teacher, Fethullah Gulen). I heard about his audiocassettes, listened to them, and read his books. These were serious sources of mental and spiritual nourishment for us during those days. For us, Hocaefendi appeared to be an extraordinarily ideal personal model.

What does it mean to be a Movement member?

“Movement member” is not the correct term, and therefore we do not use it. Rather, we use “the person who loves Hizmet,” because this movement has no structure characterized by membership records, entry-discharge ceremonies, regular meetings, and similar things.

Don’t Movement members organize meetings?

Of course they do. They meet in relation to the institution, unit, or projects with which they are involved, such as a school director with his/her teachers, a businessmen’s association with board members, and a foundation with its own management personnel. But this does not mean membership.

Why not?

It is more correct to say “supporter” or “volunteer,” because this is a movement built by people who love and are interested in Hizmet. Naturally some people take certain roles upon themselves. However, others only provide material support, or provide no material support or time but love Hizmet anyways. Those in the outer circle take a neutral approach by saying “these people mean no harm.”

Is there a hierarchy?

If you are asking whether there is a structure with instructions, announcements, programs, and projects coming down from the top flow and being obeyed word by word … no, there is no such thing. Maybe there is one related to the institutions and organizations that cooperate with each other on certain projects. Each organization has legal boards and heads of boards. Hocaefendi is a leader of ideas; he is not Hizmet’s managerial [or any other kind of] leader.

You have many institutions related to education, the media, and other areas. Who elects their boards?

Everything, including appointments, assignments, and selection, is conducted by the foundation or the company under which the related institution is located. Our foundations are not foundations of membership; rather, they have been founded by boards of trustees. Therefore, there are no memberships but only voluntary donators. For instance, take Hizmet’s best-known institutions: its schools. The first school, initiated in 1982 in Izmir, was opened by Izmir’s Akyazili Foundation. Thus the foundation’s board of trustees determined the appointments, assignments, and job descriptions of the school’s principals and teachers.

Does the Movement have people responsible for cities?

Hizmet may have a school, a university, a businessmen’s association, foundations, and associations in a city … but this is not in the way you mean. However, there is this: There are some people who know Hocaefendi very well, with scientific and intellectual depth. Their feelings and ideas are consulted so that one’s thoughts may be refreshed and Hizmet’s principles may be explained. These people give talks and also arrange conferences and seminars for the people’s emotional and spiritual benefit. We call such people abi (elder brother). Just like Hocaefendi, these abis are not part of any managerial structure.

Alright, who decides on how, when, or where to have meetings?

This requires a very lengthy response… For instance, it would be more convenient if you asked about how we organize meetings for the newspaper, schools, or hostels, because each has its own management scheme that works independently.

Who runs the hostels?

They are run by the companies or foundations that established them. A company may have twenty hostels. In order to share their experiences, these hostels might organize common seminars, undertake hostel director training programs, and hold internal meetings for seeking new employees and making currents ones more effective. The company’s board plans all of their hostels’ meetings and programs. However, since the hostel managers are nourished by the same source and principles, running the hostels is pretty much the same nationwide.

How many Movement supporters are there?

It is not possible to count all of them. Even if you only think of teachers … today there are a total of 1,000 schools both in Turkey and abroad. If each one has ten teachers, then there are 10,000 teachers in total. In addition, there are business associations. There are also media people who love Hizmet. Overall, several million people love Hizmet.

What is the Movement’s purpose?

The Movement has one local and one global target. Its local target is to help Turkey assume its deserved place in science, economics, politics, and education through well-educated and qualified people.

You have schools, hostels, industrial and commercial companies, and businessmen in order to elevate Turkey’s education and economy. However, you have newspapers, TV stations, and magazines too. Why do you have them?

Why not? Media is an important language of public consciousness. Could you imagine having something to say but no tongue with which to say it? The first schools were opened in 1983-84. The Zaman newspaper was established in 1986. In addition, these good activities need to be announced to the public. How else can you reply to those who defame your good activities and try to tarnish your reputation? How are you going to express yourself? Thus, a movement needs media outlets to express itself, just as a person needs a tongue to express himself/herself.

What is your global target?

Hocaefendi says, “With everything we do in all our projects, we are to form a culture of living together in the world since providing the world with peace and happiness can only be achieved by forming the culture of living together.” Hizmet has more than 1,000 schools in 140 countries; about fifteen of them are universities.

How many universities do you have in Turkey?

There are around 300-350 schools in Turkey, eight to ten of which are universities. Furthermore, of course, the global reach of our education programs will contribute to Turkey’s promotion in the future because friends of Turkey will flourish at these schools. These individuals’ availability throughout the world will help Turkey achieve global recognition.

How many young people have graduated from your schools so far?

Tens of thousands…

Do you encourage them to seek jobs in the government?

Naturally, and why not? Today a state can only compete with other states by having qualified human resources.

It is said that the police force has many Movement members. Do you know how many of your supporters are in the police?

People working for the police are the sons and daughters of this country. They are the children of the Anatolian people coming from the roots of this country. They are our neighbors’ children. When we talk about the large numbers of people who love Hizmet … not only in the police force, they are present in the economy, tourism, agriculture directorates, and also in government administration.

Our government still cannot be audited, inspected, or questioned. Moreover, it is still not transparent. We saw what came out of the state during the Ergenekon process. This state has yet to be saved from being a tool in the hands of some individuals or groups, for it has not yet become a democratic state of law. Therefore, there the struggle to possess the state remains ongoing. In your opinion, isn’t this a rather scary state?

The scariness of the state ends when it becomes transparent. When the people scared by it can find employment within it and, at some point can declare “this is my state now,” then the state is no longer scary.

The state isn’t scary anymore only when it is transformed into a structure that cannot be possessed, namely, a democratic state of law. It is no longer important which community, circle, movement, or ideology the state’s employees support or join, because now no one can seize the control of the state. We do not have such state! We still have a state structure that everyone tries to gang up on and seize control of. Pro-National Vision, Pro-Movement, Nationalists, and Kemalists – all of them are within the police and in conflict with each other. Do you know how many supporters you have in the police?

How can we know? If someone in the police sets his heart on Hizmet and if expressing this is risky … if that person does not share this with anyone, how can you know whether he supports it or not?

Why should it be risky?

In the past, some people were blacklisted as Gulenist policemen. In 1992 and 1996, as well as during some operations in the southeast operations during 2008, lists of Gulenist policemen were revealed. As a result, they were removed from their positions and relocated by the administration.

Recently, it has been claimed that non-Gulenist policemen are being discharged. Do you think this is true?

If there is such thing, it can never be approved. Just as the rights of those who were treated unjustly for being Gulenist policemen in the past were defended, the rights of these people should also be defended. Listen … Hizmet is not a structure with political targets. If Hizmet is abused during political struggles … Hizmet may be abused in some individuals’ personal struggles. Otherwise, there is only one duty that a pro-Hizmet policeman has, and that is to work within justice by adhering to the state’s laws and regulations. If anyone who claims to be pro-Hizmet is unjust, violates other people’s rights, and attributes this to Hizmet, then they are committing an offence. Justice should definitely be meted out to them.

In your opinion, what are the police experiencing today?

Turkey is experiencing one of its greatest reckonings. Scary appearances are emerging from the state’s closed box. Some effective groups do not want the state to be transparent, and thus raise this apprehension throughout the police force. People blame the police for this perception.  This leads to the creation of a public notion about the presence of people acting on the Movement’s behalf working within the police force and the judicial system.

Don’t some policemen and public prosecutors support the Movement?

Naturally there are some prosecutors who support it. These people are also in the police force. But what does Hizmet want? Hizmet says, “The state should be transparent. Secretive, dark dealings should be revealed.” On this point, there is no conflict among the police and those working in justice and politics.

Do Movement members employed by the state participate in Movement gatherings?

I have seen governors and police chiefs join those panels, seminars, and businessmen’s gatherings that are open to the public.

Are they assigned specific tasks?

No. What tasks should they be assigned? The only task that falls on Hizmet people is to serve people as best they can, given their respective positions.

Were those policemen who took Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener into custody and then transferred him to the prosecutor Movement members?

For me to say “yes, they are,” I would need evidence. Right now, I do not have such information.

Can you say they are not among your members?

I do not know. I asked Hocaefendi, “Do you know these people, prosecutors?” He replied, “No, I do not know them.” I asked if even though “you do not know these people, are they among those who listen to your advice?” Hocaefendi replied, “Those who listen to my advice should not go against justice and go beyond the line of rights. Beyond that, I neither recognize nor know these people.”

And now?

Yes … Now, as for those who say “these are pro-Movement people,” do they have any solid evidence to prove their claims? Of course there are people who love Hizmet, the Movement. If they are up to something that is not so good, the law and its regulations will deal with them. Hizmet does not call someone to account for this. How could a civic movement do so? Therefore, someone cannot blame Hizmet for this, as the law should enforce the relevant regulations. In addition, it is not right to classify people in relation to their religion and opinions. Nor is it right to question anyone about their identity before looking into their actions.

Isn’t it illegal to organize around an identity within the state?

Of course it is. If there is such an organization, the state should also clamp down on it just as it is doing with Ergenekon. The state will do what is required if some are abusing Hizmet for their own purposes.

Are there Movement members among the prosecutors?

Naturally there can be such people. Why not? Why would this not be okay? This country’s laws, regulations, and rules are public knowledge. State workers should act in accordance with them.

Isn’t there a probability that Movement members in the state might act according to their ideology?

Those people who place service to the country at the forefront cannot serve anything else. If they do, then they cannot claim that they are loyal and belong to Hizmet. How can you claim “I support Hizmet” yet support other organizations? This can only be called “abusing the Movement.”

How do you interpret the arrest of Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener?

I don’t approve of arresting people because of their ideas and speeches. If the judiciary interfered with the media’s freedom, this is not right. However, if there are other connections, I am unaware of them. All will be revealed by the judicial system, for it is obliged to probe and find all of the relevant evidence. I have read Ahmet Şık’s charge.

Were you convinced?

The indictment claims this: Rather than the book’s content, this is an issue of how and by whom the book was formed. There is some speculation that these connections are Ergenekon’s arm in the media that  try to  discredit the Ergenekon cases. If the content of the book is the reason for his arrest, this is never convincing since that book does not tell anything new. In fact, its content is already available in books written by Zübeyir Kındara and Saygı Öztürk. The book contains nothing that would constitute a crime or disturb Hizmet.

What do you think of the widespread rumors that the Movement is responsible for these arrests?

Is there any evidence that those who arrested them did so because they belong to the Movement?

Are the prosecutors who called the MIT secretary for interrogation members of the Movement?

I do not know. I am also very curious about why those people invited the MIT secretary to be interrogated. On what grounds is this being done, and with what intention? I do not know why this incident took place and what its target was.

So why did the Movement’s media strongly defend prosecutors’ decision?

During the Ergenekon process, the newspaper and the TV always supported the police, the judicial system, and the government in general. Perhaps this is the same reflex. Maybe they thought along the following lines: “In this country, the chiefs of staff, the force commanders have been summoned for interrogation. If there is something wrong with the MIT, then they can call for an interrogation and investigation.”

The MIT secretary was also called for interrogation as the “suspect” in relation to the Oslo negotiations. Is the Movement against these negotiations between the state and the PKK?

Hocaefendi’s general view in relation to the state’s politics and method of fighting the PKK has never opposed the state’s policy. On the contrary, he has consistently approved and supported the programs and projects decided upon by the state within its own organs. However, just the opposite has frequently been asserted. They say that the “state actually prefers to negotiate with the PKK, to moderate its demands, and to agree with them. Hizmet, on the other hand, supports a hardcore style toward KCK Operations.” This is not correct.

But the Movement’s media have defended this tough policy…

Hizmet is not bound by the personal opinions of any of its columnists.

This policy was defended also as the policy of the Movement media. In the beginning of our interview you said that you explain your opinion and activities through your media. Therefore, why is the broadcasting policy of your media not binding upon you now as regards the most fundamental problem: the Kurdish problem?

Every topic that the columnists choose to write about naturally is not binding upon us. I know this. So far, Mr. Gulen has always approved the state’s policy and progress in relation to this matter.

Has Gulen approved of the Oslo negotiations?

I speak of the general principle. Mr. Gulen thinks, “Any style, method, and strategy in the fight with the PKK belongs to the state and its institutions.” The words he uses whenever he is asked about the Kurdish problem are always as follows: “The fight with the PKK is a security problem. The strategies in relation to this are decided upon by the state’s intelligence units, political structures, and institutions. Including the Oslo negotiations, the matter of fighting the PKK belongs to the state. It [fight with the PKK] is beyond our control.”

Is there any conflict between the Movement and the MIT?

Such a conflict is not possible. Naturally, people working within the state, as well as within its judicial and police systems, could be expected to have different ideas.

The MIT secretary was considered a suspect due to his role in the Oslo negotiations and at the prime minister’s request. A large conflict, known as the “MIT crisis,” now exists between the government and the judicial system, for the prosecutors worked with the police. Is Movement support powerful among prosecutors? If the Movement support is powerful, does it explain the MIT crisis? There are long-standing claims that “the Movement is strong within the justice system and the police,” and yet you have made no effort to change this widespread perception. Why?

So many different types of accusations and defamation have been leveled against Hizmet for the last forty years! They’ve ranged from claims that the sharia will be established to the supposed Christianization of Turkey. We recently provided a lengthy explanation about this widespread perception and stated Hizmet’s position.

I am curious about this as well. Why do you make this statement only now? When they said that the Movement had a role in the Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener case, you made no official response. But when the MIT secretary was summoned and rumors about a government-Movement conflict appeared, you issued this long press statement. Claims about the Movement are long-standing. Has this view of conflict with the government disturbed you?

The view of this supposed conflict and some people’s efforts to benefit from it … it is apparent that any such conflict will weaken both parties. Political power will lose strength in its own way, as will Hizmet – even though it is innocent.

Okay, do you think it is right to summon MIT secretary because of the Oslo negotiations?

Interventions that damage a political power’s harmony and integrity, as well as cause trouble in its operations, are not right. However, in general, head of MIT may naturally be interrogated.

You recently spent a week with Fethullah Gulen. Does he support the government’s Kurdish policy?

He supports the government’s serious efforts to resolve this problem. However, are these enough? In my opinion they are not, for a permanent solution is possible only if it is guaranteed by a new constitution; Hocaefendi said that. He also remarked that some of Turkey’s fundamental problems can only be solved through a new constitution.

Does Gulen believe that the Kurdish problem can be solved through negotiation?

He says that “it is very natural that the state meets guns with guns, as long as the people with guns do not leave them behind. Meanwhile, negotiation is another solution. If there is to be any result, this is up to the state.”

In fact, arresting the MIT secretary would, as a next step, bring about the interrogation and arrest of the prime minister. Questioning the Oslo process would go up to the prime minister, right?

This is where the matter would end up … It would go that far … I understand this from the latter’s reaction. Thus, both parties (viz., the government and the Movement) would be hurt in this process, which, in turn would seriously benefit some other people in Turkey. At a time like this, when Turkey is treading a very sensitive and delicate path, we were seriously worried that current government might grow weaker and that the Movement’s reasonable and innocent projects might be tarnished. We issued our statement to shed some light on this.

Are there any Movement members in the politics?

Some people who like Hizmet and approve of it may be involved with politics. However, if you are asking whether there is any Hizmet organization in politics, there is no such thing…

Are there Movement deputies in the Assembly?

There are deputies who like Hizmet.

Did the Movement recommend their candidacies?

I know only this: When they visited Hocaefendi to ask if he could recommend some people …

Did they come from the AKP?

I think so … Hocaefendi mentioned two names upon insistent asking. There are only those two people I know.

Who are these deputies?

İlhan İşbilen and Muhammet Selçuk.

How do you see Fethullah Gulen’s statement about Mavi Marmara?

Hocaefendi drew attention to the point that activities of a civic organization conducted within a civic framework should not cause a crisis between two countries. Naturally, humanitarian aid is very important and valuable. However, he pointed out that any aid bound for Gaza should not become a matter of animosity between the two countries. One party is a civic organization; the other party is a state. A state is either just or unjust in its position. We are not in a position to judge this. However, when this state declares “do not come,” then ultimately as a civic organization it is not possible for you to pass through this barrier.

Why did a religious Movement adopt an attitude in a diplomatic case?

I do not think he [Mr. Gulen] thought diplomatically. Does or can anyone living in this country state their own mind on matters related to their country?

During the 2011 constitutional referendum, the Movement spent a great deal of time working for a “yes” vote. Why did you support referendum?

Hocaefendi paid much attention to the referendum because it suggested that twenty-six items be changed. He saw that in order to defeat militarism and advance freedom, this offered a great opportunity before Turkey. That was not a political approach. He wanted the country to have more freedom and to break the military tutelage. Think about this: In Hizmet’s forty-year history, Hocaefendi has never made such a statement. However, such an opportunity had never existed before.

What do you think of the AKP’s policies?

Turkey has taken several major steps. We see that when businessmen are listened to in relation to economy, many people are happy. We as Hizmet experienced a most comfortable and peaceful period. We have only one expectation for all of these to become permanent: the new constitution! If the current situation is not guaranteed by law under a [new] democratic constitution, political power may shift in the future and then everything would have to start over from scratch.

Okay, what do you think appointing policemen who are said to be participants of the Movement?

The government makes these appointments.

What do you think of the claim that the AKP is blacklisting Movement members and preventing them from serving the state?

I do not think that the AKP, which was blacklisted in the past, would do the same thing today, for previous blacklistings are questioned today and everyone sees how such efforts will one day be revealed and questioned.

Are Movement people blacklisted by the government?

I don’t know. I don’t think so.

There are rumors that in the coming months those policemen who are said to be Movement members will be appointed [elsewhere]. Do you anticipate such a development?

Here is my personal opinion. Those who could not achieve their desired goals from the conflict between the government and the Movement are trying to interpret government’s activities regarding the police and judicial system as aftershocks. They try present government’s activities as an attitude against the Movement, they claim that government is appointing movement-supporter police officers to different places.

However, there was a serious conflict between these two parties during the MIT crisis, right?

Some parties tried to stir up a conflict, but the Movement did not involve itself in it.

Did [deputy PM] Bulent Arinc meet Fethullah Gulen?

I know only as much as you do about his meeting. I do not know the agenda.

We heard that journalists who attend those meetings said that Fethullah Gulen criticized Prime Minister Erdogan before large groups of journalists. Why does he criticize Erdogan and the AKP?

Hocaefendi does not directly target anyone, including us. He often speaks about people’s qualities and attributes in general terms. Therefore, sometimes he brings up a beloved person’s unwanted quality or attribute for his own good. Sometimes, in order for his comments to reach the person’s ear so that he will correct it, Hocaefendi keeps it on the agenda. For instance, if he does not like one of my attributes, he puts it on his agenda with impersonal words. I know that the prime minister has many qualities and attributes that Hocaefendi appreciates, but sometimes he may say so.

What may he say?

He says, “It is important for those who shoulder the nation’s responsibility to be embracing and inclusive in their expressions and declarations” and “It is important to be embracing and inclusive of everyone; to adopt a style and to use expressions and interpretations soft enough to please everyone’s heart.” Such words do not mean that he dislikes someone; on the contrary, he is trying to protect those whom he loves from making mistakes and getting hurt.

Wouldn’t it be better to say this to the person’s face?

If he meets the person, he shares such opinions with him.

How are the relationships between the government and the Movement?

Hizmet does not expect anything from the political authorities. Our only expectations are that for the good of the country the EU process must be kept alive and democratization must be achieved; that rights and freedoms are improved; that the ongoing fight against military tutelage is completed; and that the new constitution materializes. We do not even want to think about this last effort not being successful, for it represents a very important step for Turkey’s future. After all, it seeks to preserve everything that has been gained so­ far.

Did the Movement ever contact the prime minister about the above-mentioned crisis?

The prime minister has friends within the Movement. He may have met with them. He received this matter [MIT conflict] very calmly, for he chose not to raise tension by speaking against it.

Has the Movement ever contacted the government?

There are always meetings with government officials in different ways. They attend our programs. In addition, a majority of ministers have acquaintances within Hizmet. They most probably have heard  their comments. The general opinion has always been: “A government-Movement conflict should never be entered into. Good relations should be preserved. If some are stirring the pot to make trouble, neither party should issue words or make declarations that could enable them to cause even more tension.”

Has any intermediary from the government visited Fethullah Gulen?

I don’t know.

Has an intermediary from Gulen visited the government?

Maybe there is no need for such meetings, since these discussions happen in the natural process. I am thinking that these could take place during regular communications.

Are you aware that the Movement is viewed with fear, particularly in media circles?

Yes. Journalists say that from time to time. The Matter of Ahmet Şık, police wiretapping … ultimately these are all matters of opinion.

It is said that the United States has a negative opinion of Fethullah Gulen and the Movement. What is the basis for such rumors?

First, various articles published in the Herald Tribune and the New York Times reflect the perceptions of those in Turkey rather than the American view. These may be the feelings that Turkish correspondents share among themselves. Second, our friends serving in the United States have become more known and visible due to their activities. Growing and becoming visible have both negative and positive results.

Who knows who the Movement members are?

No one knows …

Previously you have been called “Gulenist.” You were disturbed by that and thus began to use “cemaat” (congregation). Then you chose “camia” (community) and, later on, “hareket” (movement). Now you prefer “Hizmet.” Why do you change the Movement’s definition or name so often?

We have never used the terms “Gulenist” or “cemaat.” Both of these were applied to us by those who are not part of the Movement. Hocaefendi said, “Giving credit to one person for a service that millions of volunteers perform is not right.” The term “cemaat” has a place in Turkey’s general culture, but a “cemaat” is also a homogeneous structure. Thus it cannot define the Movement, which provides service in 140 countries today. This can only be called “camia.” We decided to use “Hizmet” in our latest statements because [Movement] people have called it so for years. We also wanted to promote the name “Hizmet.”

Source: Taraf Newspaper May 7, 2012. Full article is available on TimeTurk.

Disclaimer: The original news is in Turkish. Slight deviations from the original meaning may have occurred due to the difficulties in translating phrases and idioms. PII volunteers translated the article.

Tags: Fethullah Gulen, Hizmet Movement, Journalists and Writers Foundation

* Membership vs. participation/support: There is no membership in the Gulen Movement. There are no entry or exit protocols. Participants/supporters actively and continuously choose to get involved in Hizmet activities. As participation/support is volunteered, one can easily abandon his/her involvement any time one wishes to do so. To start to get involved is also of the same nature. One can easily get involved in Hizmet related activities any time he or she wishes to do so. It is preferable to use participant-supporter/participation-support  rather than member/membership. However, many people from outside the movement still use the terms member and membership.

 


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The Peace Islands Institute of New Jersey Awards Recognize Excellence

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Peace Islands Institute Annual Gala 2014

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