Turgut Durduran's Site -- about Cyprus, Photography, Linux, LaTeX, Human Rights, Politics ...

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Sat, 23 Sep 2006

Performers at a New York Wedding, 08/06

Click on the image! 

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Wed, 20 Sep 2006

Neo-Denktashism: Talat the new "basbug" or the "chief gray wolf"?

Murat Kanatli circulated two photos today. One was Dentash attending a myhtological Gray Wolf -- and/or Pan-Turkist -- ceremony and hammering a piece of hot iron and the other was the new chief of the herd, Talat doing the same now. The photos talk for neo-Denktashism themselves. The question Murat posed was whether Talat will be crowned the "basbug" or the "chief Gray Wolf" by the crowds in the next round of ceremonies where Denktash had reached the level of recognition.

[[image:demirciler.jpg::center:0]]

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Tue, 19 Sep 2006

Redefining "\ref" in latex to be more friendly

I just decided not to be lazy and finally got this done. the following will produce "Section 1" when you say "\Sref{sct:mysection}". There is "fancyref" on CTAN that does better job but I doubt I will ever stick to its rules.

%stolen from lhelp implementation on CTAN (if need be use that package)

\makeatletter   

\newcommand{\cref}[1]{\textbf{chapter~\ref{#1}}}
    \newcommand{\Cref}[1]{\textbf{Chapter~\ref{#1}}}
    \newcommand{\sref}[1]{\textbf{section~\ref{#1}}}
    \newcommand{\Sref}[1]{\textbf{Section~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\aref}[1]{\textbf{appendix~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\Aref}[1]{\textbf{Appendix~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\fref}[1]{\textbf{figure~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\Fref}[1]{\textbf{Figure~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\tref}[1]{\textbf{table~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\Tref}[1]{\textbf{Table~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\pgref}[1]{\textbf{page~\pageref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\Pgref}[1]{\textbf{Page~\pageref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\phref}[1]{\textbf{photo~\ref{#1}}}
      \newcommand{\Phref}[1]{\textbf{Photo~\ref{#1}}}
\makeatother

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TeXMed: PubMed to BiBTeX convertor

I had forgotten about this little utility. It is  a very useful one when converting a chunk of references to bibtex from an online database. There are various other ways of doing that (e.g. Bibus, bibutils etc) but I particularly find this one reliable. It is available for download at: http://www.sbg.bio.ic.ac.uk/~mueller/TeXMed/ and a quick google search will reveal a bunch of sites running it that you can use/try. 

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Sun, 17 Sep 2006

"Deep down, we’re all the same… "

"Deep down, we're all the same..." is the title of an article published in Cyprus-Mail that I reproduce below. I totally agree that "we're all the same" and my idealist worldview is screaming that it applies not only to Cypriots but the whole humanity but let me mute that one for a minute -- which reminds me, I am writing this listening to "people are strange" by The Doors -- and concentrate on Cyprus. Cyprus Mail is reporting on a study done by Birol Yesilada for The World Values Survey (WVS) . It is an interesting and very valuable survey. I just disagree with the conclusion of the article that "deep down, we're all the same", I think both communities in Cyprus are simply "all the same" on surface and differences in expectations, worries etc are dragged to the surface when we look deep down. Mine is not a scientific study but a mere observation. Look at one of the statements from article:


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Mt Airy Village Festival Part II

I have just uploaded part two where I took a bit more care with the photos. Comments? :)

The gallery is at http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=642078

[[image:weaverswaydsc_0066.jpg::center:0]]

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Wed, 13 Sep 2006

Mt Airy Village Fair, 09/10/06

This is my first installation of photos from Mt Airy Village Fair which was an interesting introduction to my new neighborhood. The Village Fair had a feel for it that called me to play with my photos again. This time trying out a "silver" colormap. Click below to go to my gallery.

[[image:fiddlerweaverswaydsc_0046highc.jpg::center:0]] 


http://www.photo.net/photodb/folder?folder_id=642078

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Sun, 10 Sep 2006

"Is it ethical?"-- A statement for intellectuals to dilute the issue.
Another day of morning entertainment from Yeniduzen. Only one of the trio members wrote a new column today and it was a light one. But the common theme was "is it ethical?". Ofcourse, they are talking about the resignations and the follow-up. Two articles I am thinking of are by Nazim Beratli (http://www.yeniduzengazetesi.com/index.php/cat/1/col/34/art/4102/PageName/Haberler ) and our (Hamamboculeri.Org's) Birikim Ozgur (  http://www.yeniduzengazetesi.com/index.php/cat/1/news/9777/PageName/Haberler   ) who wrote in Yeniduzen as a guest columnist. I was expecting some interesting commentary but I did not find it. Instead, what I saw was "step back, put on your intellectual hat, make some generalizations, talk very little about the story on the ground, put out few local facts, and reach a conclusion" approach. Ofcourse, I am caricutarizing this and that is my intend here. There is one catch and both have caught on that which is that the parties that were really hurt by these events (UBP and DP) are afraid (to some degree, see my comments yesterday about Ozgurgun) cannot play the "external influence" card very openly, so they themselves dilute the issue and play "is it ethical to leave one's party?" card. Nazim cleverly raises this issue and questins UBP and DP, afterall, they are both parties very familiar with this type of fiddling and many of their big-shots have changed parties on multiple occasions. Just today Erdem Ozaskin who left UBP in July was talking about coming back to home in Kibris newspaper. Nazim does his usual, puts out a reference, plays "I am the big knowledgable intellectual" and "you are the guy who talks about politics in a bar" , makes sure he inserts an attack on "the left" by which he remembers his Marxist past and equates "the left" mainly to Soviet style Stalinism. Somehow he remembers the fractions of left but forgets that pretty much all major conservative movements in today's Europe are based on fractions -- political, religious, ethnic or national. Religious fractions, divisions are what shaped Europe's borders and politics specially in last three centuries. He offers no substance on "Ankara influence" except to try to ridicule it. Birikim is another story. He has a long standing interest in "what is ethical" and I find it unconvincing everytime he writes a long article about it. To me, it appears to come from his academic background in social sciences. His argument is basically that north Cyprus needs a "modern right-wing, conservative movement" to match those in Western Europe. Fair enough, I agree with him that north Cyprus and Cyprus in general needs to evolve in its political thinking to embrace the so-called "European values" and embed them in its daily politics. However, this is not the issue here atleast Birikim does not make a good argument that the MPs involved are people with personal histories that show they are the "modern type". May be Birikim is too young (not that I am much older) or is deliberately ignoring history here. Every couple of years, few MPs -- including the "movement of 9" that led to formation of DP -- from UBP/DP come together and declare that they will form a "liberal party" or "a party of modern right". It creates a lot of excitement precisely amongst the circles Birikim praised ("the valuable intellectuals of right") but the history of the players (for donkey's sake, the major player here was UBP's general secretary) and the subsequent developments prove otherwise.  May be I can force him to write a follow-up arguing how these people are "face of change". Birikim also brushes aside the Ankara influence story and given his past where he is quick to call this influence (we come from very similar political traditions about that issue) , I am led to believe that he is simply wearing his intellectual hat too tightly.

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Sat, 09 Sep 2006

How did I forget Ferdi?

I am getting rusty, I submitted without writing out a few words about Ferdi. After all Ferdi is the prime-minister, i.e. the second-head of "TRaNC" otherwise known as "Turkish Republic's Agency in Northern Cyprus" and he is a good learner of Denktash's tactics. One of the familiar tactic's is being very verbose about everything. Do not bother whether what you are saying is ethical, democratic or appropriate for a person holding an office but just say it anyway. So Ferdi gets up and blasts all the rumors that claim the rebels who resigned from UBP and DP were ofered money, ministerial posts and what not. He argues that none of MPs in TRNC are for sale , they are all honorable people etc etc. Why should a prime-minsiter talk about that regarding another political party's nightmares? Well, this is northern Cyprus.

And you can read it from my favorite paper Volkan newspaper who is taking up a cautious role right now but more or less a supportive one. This is an interesting thing to note down.

http://www.volkangazetesi.net/?newsid=2632&category=3

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Snippets from the Yeniduzen Trio

It is not my habit to read what columnists say and bother analyzing them specially when it is by Turkish Cypriot columnists because we do not really have the tradition of researching columnists, those with access to secret, semi-secret information and revealing them (few like Kutlu Adali are exceptions) or those who write very thoughtful evaluations of the events. But recently the trio Ekinci-Ozuslu-Mutluyakali caught my attention. First of all, they were complaining about others comments about their columns which is a funny thing to do for a public columnist. Secondly, they are projecting an image of powerful figures in CTP and its "new face".  So I wrote some entries about them. Anyway, last few months they were acting like a chorus about how the government should topple and CTP should rule on its own. They also brought in very praising thoughts about certain leaders (ex-leaders) of UBP. This gained momentum last two weeks and they joked about their involvement about the rumored (and now true) split from UBP and DP. Before, I forget, these guys are interesting because they represent the clear face of "neo-Denktashists" of CTP. Here are some snippets from them after the resignations were announced:

http://www.yeniduzengazetesi.com/index.php/cat/1/col/32/art/4097/PageName/Haberler 

Sami Ozuslu talks about the resignations, pretends to be an outsider again. Interesting part of his column is how he playing the role of an apologist for what happened. He declares that he does not give a rat's ass (yes, he is using may be a milder form of slang) whether it was ethical or not. He is wondering why leftists should worry about the ethics of right. This is clearly being an apologist since he had already declared that CTP Will be working with this so-called "new formation" from months ago and now he is actively calling for it.  If he can't hide the Turkish influence, if he can't brush under the rug the fact that this "new formation" happened contrary to basic political ethics, basic democratic norms, then he can't go work with these "brave" souls.

 http://www.yeniduzengazetesi.com/index.php/cat/1/col/1/art/4100/PageName/Haberler

Cenk Mutluyakali is another member of the trio.  His title was a repeat of his previous statements, "for the first time without UBP and without Denktash". His argument is/was that DP was a projection of  papa-Denktash and is tightly controlled by son-Denktash to be in line to papa-Denktash's will. One could ofcourse ask Cenk why then he is such a strong supporter of a party who keeps entering coalitions with DP but I am sure he has a good answer. He goes on to talk about how UBP is disappearing, how CTP will ofcourse form a new government with this new group (and quotes Kalyoncu who somehow as CTP's second-in-command says they did not bargain with the rebels but "talked to them"), and, watch this one, how CTP will continue to change the traditional way politics is carried out in TRNC. Hah ha! He could be a stand-up comedian (or may be he is not good in improvisation, I do not know) since this is very funny to me. You know, CTP complained for decades of precisely this type of interventions from Turkey and such "new formations".

 http://www.yeniduzengazetesi.com/index.php/cat/1/col/47/art/4098/PageName/Haberler

 And finally Ekmekci. I can't tell what is political leaning is because unless I pay attention to where his column is published (Yeniduzen, CTP's paper), he sounds like a member of DP or UBP. He repeatedly makes praising statements about leaders of UBP like Miroglu (who passed away while trying to replace Eroglu). He writes few extracts from his interviews with the rebels while boasting that they are the first to get hold of them.  He uses the favorite tactic of trio and pretends to be a complete outsider. He puts statements like they were ofered money , ministrial positions etc in quotes but another statement that "he heard" (from his buddies at CTP ofcourse) that there was no such thing without quotes. Another apologist essentially.

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"This is the first time Turkish ambassador was involved", hah hah!

Below is a snipped from UBP's president Ozgurgun's statements; "Mufti headed this conspiracy and they implemented it [...]. This is a dark spot in our political history and it is the first time a governing party of  Turkey is in the middle of the events. This is a major hit against TRNC democracy, politics and UBP which is a major party [...] UBP will survive this without harm but our country's democracy will be wounded. And the Turkish ambassador was part of this conspiracy [...]". Haha! It is the first time ha! What a joke. For decades UBP stood in power precisely because of Turkey's interventions. For decades, CTP who is now eating the fruits complained about them. For decades, we have complained about the interventions of Turkey. Eroglu, the ex-president of UBP complained of them when he lost the presidential election. For decades, we said that the Turkish ambassador was acting as Turkey's agent in Cyprus ruling its agency , i.e. TRNC. I suppose I can now take it that whole of TRNC has reached a consensus about Turkey's role in north Cyprus because even DP complained about that in the past!

http://www.kibrisgazetesi.com/popup.php/cat/2/news/31512/PageName/Ic_Haberler 

"Müftü de işin başı... Bu işi yapmışlar. Benim bu değerlendirmem kamuoyunun takdiridir. Siyasetçinin yargı yeri sandıktır. Ama bu, gerçekten siyasi tarihimize kara bir lekedir ve özellikle Türkiye'de hükümet partisinin bu olayların göbeğinde olması siyasi tarihimizde bir ilktir. KKTC demokrasisine, siyasetine ve bu ülkenin köklü partisi UBP'ye de vurulmuş köklü bir darbedir bu. Ama biz bunu atlatırız. İnşallah ülke demokrasisi bundan çok ciddi yara görmez. UBP dimdik durur da ülke demokrasisi bu açık karışmalardan yara alır... Ki buradaki büyükelçi de çok ciddi şekilde bu olayların içine girmiştir. Bize karşı ciddi olarak suçlamalarını her yerde söylemekten çekinmemektedir. Dolayısıyla çok ciddi siyasi demokratik sıkıntı yaşamaktadır KKTC... Bugünkü istifalardan çıkarılması gereken sonuç budur."

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Government Partnership for Auction
Yes, it happened. Nothing to be suprised of. Two MPs from UBP and one from DP plus some big-shots resigned after a period of rumors, claims that AKP (Erdogan's government) along with its agents (supposedly the head Mufti, i.e. the head of the religious authority) in north Cyprus were making substantial offers to get them to leave their parties and start a new part in the conservative right. Nothing suprising I said, because (1) north Cyprus is under Turkish occupation, Republic of Turkey controls the politics, the economy, the social life, the military and the police, (2) similar games have been played on multiple occasions in the past, DP's own formation was part of a similar game. What makes this more fun is that the "rebels" are making announcements on page of Kibris newspaper saying they won't be part of an effort to get CTP to rule on its own (in essence) but on the other page we are reading CTP's assembly gave the right to its board to dissolve the government. CTP who used to complain about such petty manevouring in north Cyprus is now right in the middle of it and is showing no shame. Akinci tried to put them in a hard position couple of months ago announcing that he is willing, as the sole MP of his party, to support CTP to form a minority government and ofcourse he is not "good enough" (what kind of times are we living in? Not too long ago, CTP was accusing Akinci of changing his views, his party etc to gain Turkey's favors!) so they turned a deaf ear to it. This is the face of north Cyprus politics. Anyone who claimed that with CTP's rise to power (a fake one ofcourse!) we would be seeing change in north Cyprus better be doing serious thinking now, or else, I doubt their honesty!

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Wed, 06 Sep 2006

War is Closer than Civilization

Walking in the streets of Ottawa-Canada, I saw the following sign for Canadian War Museum and Canadian Museum of Civilization. It is not the intended purpose of the sign, but sadly, it reflects the World's realities -- War is Closer than Civilization.


[[image:warcivilization1.jpg::center:0]]

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Fri, 01 Sep 2006

Latest Wave of Arrest of Journalists in north Cyprus

It is the usual story; suddenly, for no very clear reason, a series of arrests, intimidations, harrasment occurs in north Cyprus. Generally the origin is from the government, military, police and, ofcourse, is somehow related to Turkey. This time, over a time span of few months, several Greek Cypriot journalists were arrested with pretty much bogus charges of filming or photographing military zones. Well, since north Cyprus is pretty much a military zone as a whole, you can imagine how valid(!) of an issue this is! You do not believe me? see for yourself from the official government gazzette at http://www.stwing.upenn.edu/~durduran/papers/askeriharita.pdf , the gist of this map is that in case of "emergency" everywhere can turn into a 1. level military area. Anyway, I am digressing. I wanted to raise two points: (1) Sevgul Uludag's short e-mail report about a protest by BASIN-SEN (Union of Press Workers) and
Turkish Cypriot Journalists Asociation and Turkish Cypriot Association of Communicators (three pressassociations/unions) , (2) Sami Ozuslu's latest pearl of wisdom that shows how much of a "neo-Denktashism" follower he and other prominent CTP/RTP members are --specifically Yeniduzen columnists. BTW, I use "neo-Denktashism" instead of "new Left", "greened-reds" (note here, this has nothing to be about being an environmentalist!) etc that others use to refer to CTP's new face because it is exactly what they are doing. They are very good students of his in style and tactics -- aha, I got some of you here, before you can get up and list me differences between CTP and Denktash/DP/UBP/etc. Sure, they exist, but I am not calling them identical! Anyway read on!

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