I was scanning the press the other day and came up a very interesting article by Mehmet Ali Birand, a secular journalist from Turkey, on Hurriyet Daily News. Entitled "Fortunately, We Have not Closed Gulen Schools", the article mentions a significant confession about the ultra-secular groups, some of whom are connected to Ergenekon underground organization, in Turkey:
I have always been a supporter of Fethullah Gülen schools and the competitions they organized. Because I oppose those who said “these schools should be closed, they are a source of reaction,” I have suffered many troubles.
Look at the stage we have reached now. Yesterday, we wanted to close them, today we carry them on top of our heads. Fortunately, we have not closed them. Fortunately, we have not acted with a narrow-mind.
In his article, Birand talks about the current Turkish Olympiads in Turkey in which there are students from more than 130 countries. They put on a display in several cities including Izmir, where the organization took place in a packed stadium with more than 80,000 people.
But he also voices an important confession. Even though, in his words, he was not a detractor of the Gulen-inspired schools, he uses the pronoun "we" when he talks about the efforts to close down those schools. But there are still some people who display every effort to close so-called Gulen-inspired schools in Turkey and other places. They are mostly connected to clandestine Ergenekon terrorist organization whose power has even been extended to America in the form of alliance with some anti-charter school groups whose sentiments are exploited by the Ergenekon. Consequently, the "anti-" groups allege that some cream-of-the-crop charter schools are affiliated with some participants in the Gulen Movement. In the face of such a baseless idea, you might just shrug off, but those Ergenekon guys have been taking this issue serious in the last two years. That is why, they first cooperated with Donna Garner and likes as well as some amateur bloggers. Later on, they realized that they needed a bigger help to close the schools they targeted.
Mr. Birand knows the psyche of these people very well. He now probably feels pity for those detractors.