We all are even more determined more than ever to build a Monument / Memorial to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, “Father of Turks” in our community. We are looking into various options and select a few on which to work in the next couple of years. We had a stumbling block in our first Monument effort due to the Diaspora Armenian Hatred Machine. Now we learned our lesson that they will try to blacken everything Turkish, even Ataturk with their lies. We better understand the urgent need to educate the public about Turkey, Turkish Americans and Ataturk’s legacy.
The Turkish American Community in Southern California - under ATASC guidance - started to build a Monument to Ataturk in the City of Carson International Sculpture Garden to show our respect, gratitude and love for his role in the establishment of Republic of Turkey and the following reforms to set Turkey into a democratic, secular, modern society.
Ahmet Alptekin designed the beautiful monument –seen in 3D renderings – not only to honor Ataturk, but also to tell the story of the rise of Turkish Nation from the ashes of Ottoman Empire to where it is today under Ataturk’s leadership. It tells the story of the War of Independence, the formation of Assemblies to turn into a national congress, victory against all invaders, Peace Treaty recognizing the new state, and establishment of the Republic of Turkey. The story continues with the reforms in educational, legal and woman’s rights issues to bring Turkey into 20th century.
The Ataturk Monument in LA (ATAMLA) team worked for 2.5 years closely with the City of Carson to select a location, to design the monument, and move through the city master planning process, building and safety departments to receive approvals from all staff. The Landscape and Monuments committee composed of the Mayor Jim Dear and Councilman Albert Robles also gave their approvals to the project so that the Ataturk Monument could be discussed in the City Council Meeting on March 4, 2015.
The Armenian Lobby, in their misguided hatred and racist agenda, started a campaign on March 2nd to bully the City of Carson not to accept the Ataturk Monument. There were hundreds (maybe thousands) of e-mails and calls to the city; some very threatening and obscene as we understand. The Hellenic Society joined on March 3rd, with calls coming all the way from Athens. The City Council, intimidated and bullied by the Armenian gangs, voted not to accept the Monument. They voted along with Mr. Robles’ motion – a turnaround from his approval the week before - to reject the Monument to prevent this kind of unrest in their city. Mayor Dear, who had proposed the Monument to ATASC and was very supportive all the way until that morning had to vote along this motion due to Armenian intimidation and bullying.
It was very sad and disappointing to be exposed to this racist hatred rooted in events 100 years ago. It was also very sad and disappointing that bullying and intimidation won a battle in the small city politics. However, as we said, we are more determined to honor Ataturk than before and will continue our efforts with more determination. As we said in our letter, link here,
“The Armenian side managed to kill this beautiful project and might feel victory in their destruction. However, when I look at the big picture, I am glad that I do not carry hate in my heart like some of them do. That is what Ataturk gave us Turks, a sense of nation not based on bloodlines, but love of country; new beginnings that left old tragedies in the past; the desire for peace and prosperity, the hope for future; namely the “Turkish Dream” much like the American dream. That is something nobody can destroy.
We are proud Turkish Americans filled with love for our heritage and the role Ataturk and his generation played in it. We will honor his legacy here in the most appropriate ways.