“The Cyprus negotiations, which ended recently never to start again, demonstrated that the island’s division is not temporary but permanent”, writes Metin Münir for secular online publication Istanbul T24. He goes on to say:
“This was demonstrated not only to the Cypriots but also to those countries such as the United Nations, the United States, Germany, Britain, and Russia that take a close interest on the issue.
The future of the Cypriots can be conceivable within this framework only.
The Turks and the Greeks will not coexist under the roof of a federation on the island, which was divided into two ethnically since the Turkish soldier landed on the island in 1974.
I can give you hundreds of reasons for this. The main reason, however, is the excessive demands of both communities from each other.
The Greeks do not want to make concessions on the monopoly over the Cyprus Republic. The Turks do not want to return the Greek lands on which they have lived for nearly 50 years to their previous owners.
A second reason — and this may be the main and most important reason is that the sides do not like each other — and I did not use the word “hate” on purpose from the point of view of Greek Cypriot sensitivity. The reason being that the sides do not trust each other and do not have a shared vision for the future of the island.
The Turkish and Greek Cypriots have shown that they belong more to the Middle East than Europe with their uncompromising minds. According to what an expert academician told me, they are even more backwards than the African tribes, who have experienced genocide, on their ability at compromise.
All these, however, have become history.
From now on, the issue can be simplified.
How will the Turkish and Greek Cypriots live their lives within the existing status quo without harming each other and the world?
There is no need for the Greek Cypriots to do much.
They are living in a state, which is a European Union member recognised by the world.
Their democracies and their judicial systems are solid. They have resolved their main problems such as education, health, and transportation. Their national per capita income is more than that of Israel.
They have a problem of provincialism, however. And, their minds are filled with the web of hatred sown by the Orthodox church. In the Christian world, no people are more the toys of the church like the Greek Cypriot people.
Despite their several enviable characteristics, this will prevent the Greek Cypriots from becoming another Singapore or Luxembourg.
The situation of the Turkish Cypriots, in turn, is pitiful.
The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus [KKTC] is a state of bribery and unearned income, established on gains of war. Its main income consists of Turkey’s generous help, which is thrown into the pool of unearned income and bribes. This “living a life of ease” system has prevented the Turkish Cypriots from setting up an administration directed toward public benefit.
Everything that can go wrong goes wrong in KKTC — health, education, bureaucracy, roads, water and electric infrastructure is falling apart. Environmental problems have turned into catastrophe.
In concretion, Kyrenia is similar to those places like Kusadasi and Mersin that have been transformed into urban hells. The administrators do not even feel the need to hide the fact that they are stuffing their relatives pockets with public property.
Bribe and unearned income and the politicians working for their benefit instead of the public good is the heroin of Muslim societies.
The only way to be free of this addiction is to get rid of the political cadres, who have not even one reform in their history, and bring to power honest and competent people.
The only reason for the Turkish Cypriots to chase the dream of establishing a federation with the Greek Cypriots is to think that the Greek Cypriots will solve the problems they cannot solve.
It was believed that all our problems will be solved if we are under the same roof with them and we will reach the same level as them, even if it was not said so outright.
Civilisation, however, is not like a head cold, it is not infectious. Prosperity, in turn, is a matter of organisation. The one who does not use his head, who cannot sweat, and who is not honest does not get any food.
The inter-communal negotiations is a “wake-up” call for the Turkish Cypriots. I hope it was heard.”
Metin Münir is a Turkish Cypriot journalist who was born in 1944 in Nicosia. He studied at the Faculty of Political Sciences of Ankara and became a journalist. The former Turkish Daily News columnist has been the Turkish representative for the BBC, the Times, the FT and the Sunday Times, and has been a columnist for New Millennium, Sabah Newspaper and Vatan Newspaper for one and a half years. He worked for five years in his first job, the Turkish Daily News. Since then, he has written of Turkish affairs for the Financial Times and the Sunday Times for 12 years. Münir worked in New Century, Sabah and Vatan. He wrote four days a week for Milliyet Newspaper until he was banned from writing for that publication in November 2012. He began posting on t24.com.tr news site since June 30, 2015.