Monday, 26 January 2009

‘Those who want to rape the daughters of the priest, come now!’

It’s been stomach-churning witnessing the coward Attila Olgac retracting the confession he made on Turkish television regarding the murder of Greek POWs during the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus.

Olgac now wants us to believe that his description of war crimes – (see here and here) – was a figment of his imagination and, indeed, a plethora of the actor’s associates have been put up to assert that Olgac is, among other things, unbalanced, a weakling and a fantasist.

Olgac’s original story may or may not be true; but what is beyond question is that every conceivable war crime was committed by the Turks in Cyprus in 1974 – mass murder, mass rape, looting, ethnic cleansing and so on – and that Turkey has never been held to account for its actions.

Indeed, Olgac’s war crimes’ revelations, even if he exaggerates or lies about his personal involvement, rather than encouraging Turks to broach the subject of the atrocities they committed in Cyprus in ’74 has prompted them instead to resort to the usual denials and lies.

It is mind-boggling that Turks cannot conceive that they are capable of wrongdoing, and this despite the fact that all the evidence of history shows that Turks, far from being uniquely righteous and immaculate, are, in fact, guilty of some of the most notorious and heinous crimes against humanity ever committed.

Even yesterday, I heard on RIK news that the association of the Turkish veterans of the Cyprus invasion had condemned Olgac for suggesting POWs were mistreated in Cyprus in ’74 and claimed instead that ‘we even shared our food with prisoners’.

This is not so much a lie as a deranged inversion of the truth and fits in well with Turkey’s Cyprus narrative, which describes not an invasion but an ‘intervention’; not a brutal assault, but a ‘peace operation’; and not ethnic cleansing aimed at Greek Cypriots, but genocide suffered by the Turkish Cypriots.

In fact, the ability of Turks to commit the worst imaginable atrocities and then deny (or justify) their crimes, not only to the outside world but also to themselves, is truly chilling. Normally, only the worst kind of psychopath can exist without a conscience.

Anyway, above is a clip from Michalis Cacoyiannis’ film, Attila ’74: the rape of Cyprus, in which some of the victims of Turkish atrocities describe their ordeals – see the whole film here – and below are extracts from two independent sources regarding the mass rape of Greek women by Turks in 1974.

The European Commission on Human Rights issued two reports on the Turkish invasion of Cyprus, one in 1976 and the other in 1983.

Here’s an excerpt from the 1976 report on mass rape: ‘Turkish troops were responsible for wholesale and repeated rapes of women of all ages from 12 to 71, sometimes to such an extent that the victims suffered haemorrhages or became mental wrecks. In some areas, enforced prostitution was practiced, all women and girls of a village were collected and put into separate rooms in empty houses where they were raped repeatedly. In certain cases, members of the same family were repeatedly raped, some of them in front of their own children. In other cases, women were brutally raped in public. Rapes were on many occasions accompanied by brutalities such as violent biting of the victims causing severe wounding, banging their heads on the floor and wringing their throats almost to the point of suffocation. In some cases, rape was followed by the stabbing or killing of the victims. Victims included pregnant and mentally retarded women.’

And here’s an extract from Turkish Cypriot journalist Sevgul Uludag’s 2006 book, Oysters with the Missing Pearls, recording events in an unnamed (presumably mixed Greek/Turkish) village during the invasion in which a priest and his daughters were held prisoners in a church.

Uludag interviewed a Turkish Cypriot villager, who recalls: ‘They were making announcements each night in the village… They were calling the men to go to the church… “Those who want to rape the daughters of the priest, come now!” they were saying. My father was angry and was telling me to get inside the house and remain there… 30 of them, 40 of them would go to rape the girls inside the church… They kept the priest there to watch… Now, no one pointed a gun to their heads to do this. These were the ordinary men of the village that you see every day… Later the Red Cross or some other organisation came to the village to take the girls. The girls were brought outside on stretchers; they were covered in blood and they were taken away. I remember those announcements, people going round the houses and saying, “Who wants to come tonight?” Now if we told these stories, imagine how a 10-year-old boy who loves his chubby grandfather and finds out that he had been part of the raping of the girls in the church, would feel… How his world will be crushed if he finds out that in fact his grandfather had killed seven or eight persons.’

*Also read this post: ‘Mass rape of Greek women during Turkish invasion of Cyprus’

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