Stop Acting Like Leaders!

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My name is Bashar al-Asad. I am the President of Syria. As the son of Hafez  al-Asad who ruled the country for 30 years, I was the only candidate in the presidential elections in 2000 after his death. There has never been a true democracy in Syria and I did not do anything for a democratic transition until the uprising in March 2011. I am furious to countries that are meddling in our internal affairs, which means ongoing civil war that caused the death of 100.000 people and the displacement of 2 millions Syrians as refugees.

My name is Barrack Obama. I am the President of the United States. I was awarded to a Nobel Peace Prize in 2009. One of the biggest achievements of my administration was the killing of Osama bin Laden, the leader of Al-Qaeda.  I am now cooperating with Saudi Arabia who funds and arms extremists and jihadists in Syria.  I am also trying to convince public opinion for the necessity of a military intervention to Syria. The conventional weapons killed 100.000 people up till now but my main argument is the chemical weapons in Syria and how they threat international security.

My name is Vladimir Putin. I am the President of Russia. My country is the biggest arms supplier of Syria. We intervened to Georgia and Chechnya without U.N. Security Council’s approval but I am against a military intervention to Syria without an agreement in the U.N.

My name is Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. I am the Prime Minister of Turkey. I do not mind authorizing police to use excessive force towards people who protest my policies in Turkey; however I would not like to see some countries’ leaders to use force towards its armed opponents, therefore I provided financial and military support to the opponents of Assad who also attacked civilians and escalated the violence.

My name is Hassan Rouhani. I am the new President of Iran. I promised to normalize the relations with the United States even before I was selected. My country was the victim of chemical weapons during the war with Iraq. Yet, I do not want to lose my strategic ally and my interference is causing the prolongation of the civil war.

By Derya Kaya

6 Comments on “Stop Acting Like Leaders!”

  1. This is a great post with such creative delivery. I think you really highlight the hypocrisy of each leader. Is every leader hypocritical to some extent? Unfortunately it appears so. With the events going on right now I wonder if we are left with bad leaders, or if this is just such a complex and difficult topic no person could act in such a way that is completely correct and justified.

  2. Thanks you all for the comments.

    Steven, my post reflects what I think. I think none of the countries had a clear position and they all ignored the major humanitarian crisis and human rights violations-mainly right to live of 100.000 people- and had primarily acted with political motivations.

    Jamie, let’s blame the messy situation and let’s hope that one day “leaders” will be allowed to be good to become a leader.

  3. Erdoğan’s reactions to the Gezi Park protests have also been revealing in a number of other ways. Perhaps most striking has been Erdoğan’s insistence that the protests were instigated by foreign “dark forces” jealous of Turkey’s “rise to greatness” under his leadership and something he has described as the “interest lobby”. More disturbing has been the evidence of widespread – though not universal – anti-Semitism in the AKP. On June 16, 2013, hours before Erdoğan was due to address a rally of AKP supporters in Istanbul, the main pro-AKP daily newspaper Yeni Şafak claimed that it had uncovered evidence that the Gezi Park protests had been orchestrated by the “Jewish lobby” in the U.S. and even published the names and photographs of a number of prominent Jewish Americans who it alleged were the leaders of the conspiracy. The Yeni Şafak article was publicly endorsed by a succession of leading members of the AKP, who maintained that the government also had concrete evidence of the plot. On July 1, 2013, the Turkish Cihan news agency quoted Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay as publicly accusing the “Jewish Diaspora” of responsibility for the Gezi protests. Atalay later tried to claim that Cihan had willfully misquoted him. But a video of his speech is freely available on the internet and leaves no doubt that the Cihan report was accurate.
    Erdoğan and the AKP have already been severely damaged by the protests. Yet, despite all the febrile claims of foreign conspiracies, the damage has been almost entirely self-inflicted. It would have been relatively easy for Erdoğan to have defused the protests in late May. Instead, he panicked. His subsequent attempts to crush the protests by force and his polarizing, self-aggrandizing rhetoric have already cost him any chance he might once have had of introducing a presidential system in 2014. Rationally, Erdoğan should accept the court decision, abandon his plans to redevelop the Taksim Square area and move on. He still has enough time to reach out to those he has alienated and boost his chances of being elected president under the current system in 2014. But the new sense of freedom created by the Gezi protests means that Erdoğan will face more criticism. Past experience suggests that he will react by being confrontational, vindictive and repressive. The result is likely to be a period of sustained domestic uncertainty and political instability.

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