Osman Murat Ülke

Activist:
Country:
  • Turkey

In view of my deepest convictions and way of life, it is impossible for me to take part in military service or any other compulsory service.

Furthermore I refuse to acknowledge any kind of hierarchical authority. In my opinion the army is the clearest form of institutional power, which makes it a personal enemy I seek to combat and destroy. This is why I consider conscientious objection as the first step on the path I have to follow to preserve my self- esteem.

Turkey is based on an authoritarian culture that pervades all dimensions of life at work, in the private sphere, and - especially strongly - the political arena. It is therefore not surprising that a large part of the population turns a blind eye to the war that Turkey is currently waging and continue in their way of life. The myth perpetuated about the role of soldiers as protectors of their country and fellow citizens from the outside enemy has turned them into one of the most commonly used instruments of oppression in their own country. I cannot say how big a difference I and those who think like me can make, but I do know that no coercive measure will ever force me to become a soldier.