March 20, 2007


Award-winning British journalist Robert Fisk, who has covered the Middle East for some 30 years, revealed in a March 19th article in The Independent, a London-based newspaper for which he writes, that his Istanbul publishers for a proposed Turkish language edition of his latest book "The Great War for Civilization" are now pulling out of the deal.

According to Fisk, the reason is that his book includes a chapter entitled "The First Holocaust" which records the genocide of one and a half million Armenians by the Ottoman Turks in 1915.

In The Independent article entitled, " The truth should be proclaimed loudly", the journalist reprints the following letter form his Istanbul publishers as their rationale for postponing the book's Turkish edition.

"We would like to denote that the political situation in Turkey concerning several issues such as Armenian and Kurdish Problems, Cyprus issue, European Union etc do not improve, conversely getting worser and worser due to the escalating nationalist upheaval that has reached its apex with the Nobel Prize of Orhan Pamuk and the political disagreements with the EU. Most probably, this political atmosphere will be effective until the coming presidency elections of April 2007... Therefore we would like to undertake the publication quietly, which means there will be no press campaign for Mr Fisk's book. Thus, our request from [for] Mr Fisk is to show his support to us if any trial [is] ... held against his book. We hope that Mr Fisk and Harper Collins can understand our reservations."

Mr. Fisk goes on to draw parallels between this latest example of Turkish nationalist intimidation of proponents of freedom of speech, the murder of Hrant Dink and the general philosophical quagmire that exists in Turkey regarding a fair and frank expose of past historical realities.


Post a Comment

<< Home