28.5 C
New York
HomeExpertsPeaceful women walking in Israel... They are paving the way for hope...

Peaceful women walking in Israel… They are paving the way for hope from Gaza

Oral Calislar*

The late 1990s and the early 2000s were a positive period in terms of democratization, freedom-oriented values, and hope for the future. The European Union was strengthening with new additions, and there was increasing interest in Western values. Countries that had separated from the disintegrating Soviet Bloc and Yugoslavia, such as Bulgaria, Poland, Romania, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Croatia, Estonia, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia, became EU members. The remaining countries of the Eastern Bloc, like Ukraine and Belarus, also wanted to join the EU.

This wind, which coincided with the early years of the AK Party, also drew this party into the reformist and freedom-oriented camp. Among liberal values, religious and belief freedom also held an important place. The world economy was going through some of its most productive periods, and per capita income was rising in many countries. In 2013, while the peace process was ongoing, EU membership negotiations were also continuing.

Per capita income in Turkey reached its highest level in history at $12,489.

Similar enrichment and growth were happening worldwide. The values system of the European Union had turned into a democracy criterion exemplified under the name of the Copenhagen Criteria. In the United States, Obama, in the UK, Tony Blair, and in Germany, Merkel were being regarded as representatives of democratic stability. During this period, Tony Blair brought the century-old conflicts in Ireland to a point where the guns fell silent. Tayyip Erdoğan was attracting attention as a politician closely watched by the Western world.

In the intervening ten years, everything has turned upside down. Israel’s incursion into Gaza earned it the title of the catastrophic year 2023. Sensitivity to democracy and freedoms has weakened both in Europe and around the world. In the heart of Europe, there is a trend that wants to disregard the European Court of Human Rights, and bad winds are blowing. Countries ruled by right-wing governments like the UK and Italy, and countries from the Eastern Bloc like Hungary, Poland, and Romania, do not want to be held accountable for human rights violations.

Sensitivity to human rights has also weakened in our country. From 2013 to the present, per capita national income has dropped from the 12,000s to the 8,000-9,000s. In the ranking of countries, Turkey has fallen from 65th place to 77th.

In the early 2000s, Turkey was experiencing growth and development with a conservative government. Things got complicated after 2013. We saw firsthand that there is a serious connection between economic growth and democratic freedom-oriented choices. As issues of rights, law, and justice became problematic, the economy also declined in parallel.

Can the world set sail for a new freedom wind? The disaster unfolding in Gaza may draw attention to human rights and the rule of law.

While writing this article, a piece of news from Israel brought hope. Thousands of Jewish, Muslim, and Christian women walked together in peace in Israel. Israeli singer Yael Deckelbaum showed what music could do for change by singing the song “Mother’s Prayer.” Those who desire peace from all around the world can create a similar new wave.

A solution from Gaza may turn into a new hope. We must not lose hope. Scenarios presented like a horror movie may prove to be empty.

*Oral Çalışlar is a Turkish journalist and writer.

This article was originally published in Serbestiyet.com.

Take a second to support Politurco.com on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!
Politurco.com is a new online platform which primarily focuses on Turkish politics, Middle East and Muslim world with a high commitment to standards of journalistic and academic ethics and integrity.

Most Popular

Recent Comments