Orhan Pamuk: a true hero of our times!

The first Turkish national who comes to my mind is Orhan Pamuk. I think he is the greatest Turk of the present age and one of the greatest Turks of all time!

Yes, this post is about Ferit Orhan Pamuk, the Nobel Prize winning Turkish novelist and professor of literature. He is one of Turkey’s foremost novelists whose work has been translated into more than fifty languages. He has won numerous national and international literary awards and is the first Turk to receive a Nobel Prize. He studied architecture briefly but went on to graduate from the Institute of Journalism at the University of Istanbul. I have not read any of his books so far, but I greatly admire him for another reason. Read more about this great man on this wikipedia article.

Orhan Pamuk-Photo: Wikipedia

So we would expect such a wonderful human being and a patriotic Turk to be treated as a hero in his own motherland, wouldn’t we? Afterall, here is a man who loves his country but more importantly, is a good human being who prefers to look at the truth.

But the reality is different from the truth! Very different indeed!

Orhan was treated like a criminal! A hate campaign was started and criminal charges were brought against him and he was forced to flee his country! But he made the most courageous decision to return to his beloved motherland and face the false charges against him! Due to an international outcry, the criminal charges against him were dropped! But some scoundrels did not stop with that! There was a group of criminal assassins who even plotted to kill Orhan and others!

But why was he treated like this? The only reason is because he chose to speak the truth!

In an interview, Orhan had stated, “Thirty thousand Kurds and a million Armenians were killed in these lands and nobody dares to talk about it“. In another interview, he said that he wanted to defend the freedom of speech, which was Turkey’s only hope for coming to terms with its history, “What happened to the Ottoman Armenians in 1915 was a major thing that was hidden from the Turkish nation; it was a taboo. But we have to be able to talk about the past.

Now, that is a courageous decision to stand up for the freedom of speech and for the truth by a man who is admired by many for his contribution to Turkey and the world!

But he was treated like a common criminal! Orhan is no killer or liar or cheat or anti-national! He is the exact opposite of those evil types!

It does not surprise me in the least, though. I know why he was treated like that by some of his own fellow citizens. This is the sad reality that honest people have to go through! Why do we do this to such wonderful people? Why do we ask them to shut up, abuse them, ill-treat them, batter them, hurt them, offend them, call them names, put them in prison, torture them emotionally and even try to kill them?

What wrong have they done? What crime have they committed? Why the hell should they be treated like that for daring to speak the truth? Why the hell should they be treated like that by people who don’t want to come to terms with the truth? Why on Earth should they be treated like that for speaking out against oppression? Is it such a great crime for a patriotic citizen to suggest that his fellow citizens should come to terms with the truth so that everyone in that country can have a bright future?

I always admire such great men and women! They are the only hope for our planet! They are the only hope for civilisation! When war, genocide, crime, corruption, greed and pollution are destroying our beautiful planet and all her sons and daughters, it is people like the brave and courageous Orhan who will save Mother Earth from the brink of disaster! They are the greatest heroes of our times! They are the greatest sons and daughters of their countries and of Mother Earth and Father Time!

Orhan, don’t worry about those people who have treated you the way they have! For every such person, there is another person who is more patriotic and more human who will defend you! Turkey is indeed blessed to have a son like you, Orhan! People like you are the last hope for their countries and for our planet!

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8 Responses to Orhan Pamuk: a true hero of our times!

  1. uha1 says:

    He might be a very good writer but this doesn’t means that he would always speak the truth. I have been reading Pamuk`s books since I was high school, he deeply entitles his writings with his inner world, but , as a matter of fact, they are just a part of his imagination. He is not a historian to claim historical myths as facts!

  2. Raj says:


    Thanks for expressing a different opinion. I believe you are a Turk and so you would have read Orhan Pamuk’s works in Türkçe. Unfortunately, I have not read any of his works so far. I will as soon as possible though.

    You mentioned that Orhan is not a historian. That may be true, but he was married to Aylin Turegen, a historian till their divorce. So I think he does know some history.

    Also, history does not belong to historians just as literature does not belong to writers and science does not belong to scientists. Anyone can speak about those things.

    I am not saying that I know Turkish history as I know very little about the history of Türkiye except a few bits and pieces.

    But I think if a person like Orhan Pamuk says something even at the cost of finding himself in prison, he really wants Türkiye to come to terms with its past.

    Many countries like Germany, South Africa and more recently, Australia, have come to terms with their past and those countries are only the better for it.

    I hope not just Türkiye, but every country in the world that has had a troubled past, including my own country, comes to terms with its past so that everyone in those countries can have a bright future!

  3. Cristina says:

    Well, yes I have read his books (in Italian and French). He may be a good writer but not for all. After Nobel, no one would like to listen to bad critics at all.

    Don’t you see that there’s a politic games behind this things? How easily you believe to what a writer say just because he’s in front of you. Have you ever met people who lives in that country from different ethnicity? If you did not, I suggest you to not judge.

    Well, comparing Turkey’s situation to Germany or South Africa seems too cruel to me. After all we have to inform ourselves more about the real history but specially politics. And not listen to what Media says to us.

    No one would like to listen to Turks now. Cause regarding your point of view if you are a Turk you can not express the opposite thoughts. Sorry for them; cause even they will yell the truth, no one would believe them.

    Oh, by the way I am not Turk. : ) Italo-French.

    ps: True hero? Just read him once, go to that country, speak with non Turks and then judge. And never trust to media!

  4. Cristina,

    Thanks for your comment! 🙂

    Okay, let us assume that he is a good writer who has his share of critics. But how does that affect the truth about events that happened in Türkiye?

    I don’t think I’m being judgemental about Türkiye and I simply don’t trust the “mainstream media” either.

    You believe it is too cruel to compare the events in Türkiye to those that took place in Germany and South Africa. I don’t think so. The Armenian genocide and killing of Kurds are not mere myths or exaggerations:



    While Germany and South Africa have atleast come to terms with the horrible events that happened in the past, Türkiye refuses to do so and instead punishes anyone who dares to speak about it! And that is what makes Orhan Pamuk a true hero! 🙂

  5. malarthamil says:

    Lies are generated from the Ignorance about the History. The writers have a capacity to travel in to the past and find out what was not recorded. Journalists of mainstream media writing the current affairs have no such capacity and cannot understand the truth exposed by the writers. The dynamics of media is decided by the economy and its support to the present establishment in politics and government. The media always promote a false national pride and attach itself to such pseudo patriotism to defend its own mistakes. Any writer or even a journalist opposing such media and establishment risks his own life. This happens everywhere in the world.

    • True, Malar. Journalists from the “mainstream media” are usually lowly people who have absolutely no knowledge or wisdom. They have zero understanding of words like ethics or civilised behaviour. Voracious boot-licking of the establishment crooks are what they are good at. This is especially true in the semi-civilised Third World.

  6. rainjazzed says:

    Thank you for the article, Earthling.
    I am reading one of his novels now , “New Life”, and I really really like it.
    I agree that he is a hero, and not only for Turkey but the rest of the world, for motivating many others to speak up against taboos and injustices in the world so that cruelty would not happen again. Ignorance is probably the biggest reason why The Genocide in Darfur is ongoing and why genocides can happen again and again.
    After all, Hitler said to his generals when issuing the order to kill the Jews “After all, who now remembers the Armenians”.
    I am also glad that Orhan Pamuk is not the only one in Turkey who has and his speaking up.

    • You’re welcome, Rainjazzed 🙂

      It’s not just ignorance, for ignorance is no excuse in the internet age. Even if people know what’s happening, they deliberately choose to support crimes and cruelty, completely unaware that their complicity in crimes will definitely come back to haunt all of them individually and collectively at a later stage 😐

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