Remembering Ecevit

Remembering Ecevit

To the question, “How would you know Ecevit?”, the dominant majority of the community would say ‘we knew well’. If a politician is to have a ‘three cent’ reputation, Bulent Ecevit’s part plays a big role in this.

Ecevit was in politics last 40 years, yet in Demirel’s, Ozal’s and in the last period of time that Tayyip Erdogan has achieved as ‘one-man power’ was never vouchsafed for Ecevit. He sat in the prime minister chair a couple of time but only when there was a fraction of absolute majority or when he was at the head of the minority government or when he was the president of a troubled coalition.
In the years after, with a percentage of 30, in fact with even more nominal voting rates there were parties that came to power by themselves but in the 1977 elections even though he had a high rate of 42 percent Ecevit was not granted this opportunity.
He saw politics as a ‘public service vehicle’ not as a ‘profession’. The reason his name was identical to the honest leader statement was because hic name was never mentioned with any corruptions.
Bulent Ecevit had close friends, supporters, admirers but there were never businessmen to Ecevit!
Ecevit didn’t own any property either; all he had was his one wife namely Rahşan, his famous typewriter, his books and his library. If there were two words searched to describe Ecevit’s human side, it would surely be those two words ‘veracity’ and ‘affability’.

With the right dominating in Turkey, Ecevit was the only leader that brought together the left with the public. 
with the current oppositions directed towards the leftist rhetoric in Turkey, with the concept he expressed of secularism as ‘respective secularism towards beliefs’, he managed to build sturdy bridges with the public.

Large masses that were convulsed in poverty in Turkey had problems with Turkey’s leftist, not with the left; this was once more proved with Ecevit.
When he sat down to politics as the ‘Minister of Labor’, he was the cabinets ‘youngest minister’ but in that ministry by signing legal regulations he was to engrave his name into history. This made him become an ‘unforgettable name’ in the unionist world.
Yet the reason why the Turkish society opened a place for him in their hearts was different: Cyprus Peace Operation!
Since the Turkish War of Independence he was the first to give the decision for the Turkish soldiers to battle. Turkey was right on all grounds, but the Turkish rights were being usurped in front of the world’s eyes. He was supposed to be able to go through with the operation.
The Cyprus Peace Operation transformed Ecevit into a ‘legend’.
Another merit that separates Ecevit from the other leaders was that he never adhered to the chair. When the time came he saw resignation as a ‘merit’ not as a ‘declaration of defeat’. Throughout his political career with his own volition he decided to resign exactly five times.

Turkey, may not have gone through and done development movements or revolutionary reforms, but everyone thanks to Ecevit knows that these are not the only things that are expected from politicians. With his courtesy and his bashfulness, his romantic character, his wide culture and his knowledge in the Turkish language, Bulent Ecevit was one of the rare leaders in our political lives.
The Turkish people would be likely to renounce his rights with force.

Gürkan Zengin