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Open Letter to the following writers in response to their articles noted below:

Harald Doornbos  –     Bye Bye to the Greatest Turk Ever
Sabrina Tavernise –    Turkey: Kemalism on the ropes
Dinesh S’ouze      –      Turkey Ready to Bury Ataturk
David Warren       –     Longing for Ataturk, The Ottowa Citizen, July 25, 2007
Hillel Halkin         –     Ataturk’s Turkey Overturned, New York Sun, July 24, 2007

Those who write with limited knowledge of the Turkish history and the Turkish Republic should know that Ataturk will never be buried nor the Turks will ever say goodbye to the greatest leader of the twentieth century, who will live forever. The commentary below written back in 2003 should be sufficient to remind Mr Doornbos, Mr Souza, Ms Tavernise and anyone else who may think like them that, Ataturk was the greatest leader of the twentieth century and will remain as the guiding principle for the Republic of Turkey. No one, as suggested by the new deputy of the ruling party Prof. Zafer Uskul, will dare to change the Introduction to the Turkish Constitution, which states that the constitution is based on the Ataturk’s nationalism and his peaceful revolution and principles, and Article 2, which also refers to the Ataturk nationalism.

Osman Gazi, the leader of a Turkish tribe from Central Asia established the Ottoman Empire in 1299 in a small town called Sogut, giving his name (known in the west as Othman) to one of the longest-lasting states in the history of the world. After conquering lands all across Asia Minor, Europe and Asia and reaching its zenith during the reign of Suleyman the Magnificient, the empire fell prey to the games of the European states who created the Eastern Question in the nineteenth century in order to dismember the most tolerant empire in the world, which came to an end in 1922.

Mustafa Kemal Pasa and his newly established army fought against the imperialist forces of the west and Mustafa Kemal Pasa established the Republic of Turkey on October 29, 1923. This took place following the liberation of the western part of Turkey and creating the Grand National Assembly in Ankara on April 23, 1920, while Vahdettin, the last Sultan of the Ottoman Dynasty was collaborating with the occupiers of the capital city Istanbul, who eventually fled the country on a British warship. The Parliament acknowledged the greatness of Mustafa Kemal and gave him the name ATATURK when everyone in Turkey took last names in 1924.

Yuksel Oktay
Washington, NJ , USA
July 28, 2007

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