By David Codrea
As this column is being written, the identity of the killer(s) responsible for the New Year’s Eve massacre in an Istanbul nightclub is unknown. What we know is 39 people have been murdered and “about” 70 others were injured in an attack lasting approximately 7 minutes where an automatic rifle and hand grenades were reportedly deployed. Hopefully, by the time this reaches print, the toll will not be higher.
While authorities claim to be “closing in” on a suspect, the Turkish press is citing officials who believe the killer to be from Uzbekistan or Kyrgyzstan—either that or from China. “Experts” examining footage of the attack reported the suspect appeared professionally trained, expending over 180 rounds and changing six magazines. He changed clothes and made his escape as one of the fleeing crowd.
To no one’s surprise, the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the atrocity. The murderous fanatic was described as “a heroic soldier of the Caliphate” striking against “Christians … celebrating their pagan feast” who acted to “let infidel Turkey know that the blood of Muslims that is being shed by its airstrikes and artillery shelling will turn into fire on its territories.”
Also not unexpectedly, Turkish authorities are investigating whether the same cell was involved in the attack at Istanbul Ataturk Airport the previous June in which three terrorists used guns and bombs to slay 36 and wound 147.
Curiously, again at this writing, self-styled “common sense gun safety law” groups, never shy about leaping to conclusions and blood-dancing for more infringements every time there’s a criminal shooting to exploit, have been strangely silent about the Istanbul killings. So far the story is being ignored on their web pages and social media accounts, with the groups preferring instead to focus on warning everyone against Donald Trump and the NRA—that and blaming Indiana for Chicago’s record homicides. Perhaps it’s because they realize Turkey already imposes a “wish list” of gun owner control infringements the gun-grabber groups want to see enacted here. Perhaps it’s because an examination of that will show how useless such edicts are at stopping the evil in our midst.
GunPolicy.org is no friend to private gun ownership. It’s hosted by the Sydney School of Public Health, and “[w]ith its partners and contributors … promotes the public health model of firearm injury prevention, as adopted by the World Health Organization’s Global Campaign for Violence Prevention and the United Nations Programme of Action on small arms.”
Nonetheless and agenda notwithstanding, it provides an invaluable online compilation of gun laws in a database searchable by country, although (again, at this writing) it notes “GunPolicy.org is no longer supported by donors, and has no staff. Updates will recommence if and when funding is available.”
The entry for Turkey says it all clearly.
“The regulation of guns in Turkey is categorised as restrictive,” we are told. “In Turkey, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law.
“In Turkey, civilians are not allowed to possess automatic firearms and semi-automatic firearms,” the entry continues. “In Turkey, private possession of fully automatic weapons is prohibited.
“In Turkey, only licensed gun owners may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition,” it continues, with the further caveat “Applicants for a gun owner’s license in Turkey are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm…”
We’re further informed that “An applicant for a firearm license in Turkey must pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health, domestic violence, medical, and addiction … Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in Turkey stipulates that a gun license should be denied or revoked.
“In Turkey, gun owners must re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm license every five years,” the entry elaborates. “[A]uthorities maintains [sic] a record of individual civilians licensed to acquire, possess, sell or transfer a firearm or ammunition.”
While handgun ownership is permitted under Turkish law, per the pro-government Daily Sabah, a prospective owner will need to pay $1,600 for two licenses, one to own and one to carry, and those must then be approved by “a provincial governor.” And there are tests to carry administered by doctors “require[ing] a person to answer at least 500 questions to determine his psychological situation.”
As an aside, calculating “purchasing power parity” for Turkey, which per a Daily News report by Ankara’s Anadolu Agency, mean average per capita income has “reached 60 percent of EU and Japanese average.” That in turn means the cost of those licenses is prohibitive for many, especially for everyone falling below the estimated $19,000 annual average.
And what are the results of having such stringent controls in place, replete with stiff fines and prison terms for scofflaws? That’s predictable, too.
“The estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in Turkey is 9,000,000,” Gun Policy.org reports, citing a 2007 survey on civilian gun ownership for 178 countries.
“The number of registered guns in Turkey is reported to be 2005: 3,000,000,” the entry admits.
So much for compliance with draconian regulatory schemes by those not inclined to be “law-abiding,” and that’s just from within the general populace. Anyone who thinks Islamist terrorists and other madmen will do anything but rely on “gun control” as a means of guaranteeing higher body counts doesn’t need a 500-question test to prove they’re embracing insanity.
Noting how many bent on destroying the West are coming through NATO member Turkey and going on to Europe through the suicidal “refugee resettlement” policies of the globalist elites, it should also come as no surprise to see Violence Policy Center promoting a CNN link on its Twitter social media account with the message “The EU responds to mass shootings and terror attacks with a ban on assault weapons and other measures.”
European Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker bragged the agreement was “a milestone … that reduces the risk of shootings in schools, summer camps or terrorist attacks with legally held firearms.” That terrorists aren’t all that big on “legally held firearms” seems not to have been persuasive with Juncker and his fellow Eurocrats. Nor were protests from Sweden and the Czech Republic, which objected based on how sport shooting would be complicated, or from Finland, which made the more persuasive case (based on a history personally remembered by some still living) that “such ban would affect its national defense, which relies on reservists being able to train with semi-automatic weapons.”
What’s happening in Turkey and the European Union—in terms of unchecked “migration” and gun laws that are absolutely useless at stopping those with murder on their minds—ought to be a canary in the coalmine for the United States. You can’t help but notice that the special interests behind importing people whose backgrounds can’t be vetted are the same interests trying to impose Turkish and European gun bans on Americans.
It’s up to those of us who can see that to stop those subversive interests from drawing such bloodbaths here.