This week I was privileged to spend the night at the Pennsylvania compound of Fethullah Gülen, the Sufi influenced Turkish modernist. I had two sessions to ask him questions in front of his followers and was allowed to sit in on his evening meeting with followers as well as attend his two-hour class for his disciples in the morning.
Exiled. Away from his friends and family and watching from afar as thousands of Turkish doctors, teachers, professors and more have been jailed. Unbelievable, Bilici called it. Out of work and afraid of what was coming, he left the country. Eventually, he purchased a one-way ticket to America and is now, like thousands before him, a Muslim immigrant.
Jews and Muslims broke Halal and Kosher bread together at an interfaith dinner for iftar — the nightly meal during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. The Kings Bay Y, a Jewish community center in Sheepshead Bay, hosted the May 17 event in partnership with the Turkish Cultural Center of Brooklyn.
She could stay in Turkey where she might end up imprisoned, at risk of torture and sexual assault, and separated from her young children. Or she could take them on a dangerous journey, with no guarantee of survival.
Most customers do not recognize the fit, well-dressed man walking around Tuts Bakery and Cafe, picking up used cups and dirty dishes. Why would they? And what would he be doing here? Hakan Sukur, 46, is one of Turkey’s most famous athletes, its most celebrated soccer player, a World Cup hero and a veteran of several of Europe’s top leagues. So how did Sukur end up here?
The letter, signed by 43 Republicans and 23 Democrats, warned that the U.S. may decide to take unspecified measures” to ensure that Turkish government “respects the rights” of U.S. citizens to remain in Turkey without fear of being persecuted.
Canada’s Green Party leader and lawmaker Elizabeth May said during a panel discussion held at the Canadian Parliament in Ottawa on widespread human rights violations in Turkey that “I am entirely horrified by the behaviour of the Turkish government. We need to be more speaking out loud.”
There seems to be some level of disconnection between the Hizmet and the other Muslim communities in the United States. It should be acknowledged that some volunteers or institutions of the Hizmet movement have already achieved a good level of cooperation with other Muslim communities in certain places; nevertheless, such good examples are only local and very limited.
Fethullah Gülen: I was saddened to learn of the passing of Rev. Billy Graham, a renowned man of faith who reached hundreds of millions with his inclusive messages in service of world peace. With his departure he leaves a gap that is hard to fill.
We heard about mothers being imprisoned right after birth in Turkey. And it’s just really a horrible shame; and that they’re still being tracked by the Turkish government at this point is just really frightening. Turkey had achieved democracy, but now it’s under a single person’s rule–which is what we call a dictatorship.
Three generations of a Turkish family were stripped of their livelihoods, life savings, friends and culture in a sweeping purge by the authoritarian regime of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. They languish as political refugees in a cramped apartment along a busy commercial stretch of Delaware Avenue.