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Truly Sad – WordPress Censored in Turkey – Creationist Harun Yahya Involved Monday, August 20, 2007

Posted by Henry in Adnan Oktar, anti-creationism, anti-evolution, anti-fundamentalism, Atlas of Creation, censorship, Edip Yuksel, education, Europe, European Union, evolution, faith, fundamentalism, Harun Yahya, Islam, rationality, reason, religion, science, Turkey, United States, WordPress.


I was under the impression that Turkey was a member of EU, which is incorrect. Thanks for the reader who kindly pointed out my mistake.

h3nry – 21 August 2007

This is official: my dear blog host WordPress has been blocked in Turkey due to the so-called “defamation blogs” containing alleged “slanders” made to the Turkish Islamic fundamentalist, and the newest and hottest creationist kid in town, Adnan Oktar – or better known by his pen name, Harun Yahya.

Harun Yahya has recently published a fantastically crafted creationist book called Atlas of Creation that has been translated into many language and been shipped, unsolicited, to the schools and universities in various parts of Europe and the United States (which I briefly blogged here). It is not clear how Harun Yahya financed this book and its junk distribution, but the content of it often violates copyright laws.

Now on to the ban of WordPress in Turkey. It seems that the issue is that a person by the name of Edip Yuksel, a self-proclaimed Islamic reformer, has registered various subdomains of WordPress such as:



and various other domains to, in the words of Harun Yahya’s legal team, “defame” the Islamic fundamentalist. Be sure to check out the site http://AdnanOktar.wordpress.com to see, I think, photos of what seems to be Harun Yahya in prison and being arrested by police.

Here is the extract of a letter sent to WordPress by Harun Yahya’s lawyer (italics mine):

The number of our attempts to inform and warn you regarding these defamation blogs must have been at least twenty, many times through your support page, a couple of times to your legal department and we even sent a regular mail to Mr. Matt Mullenweg (from the WordPress team). Most of our attempts were unanswered.

These defamation blogs contained slanders to some of my client’s friends as well. They also applied WordPress.com support with their official ID cards and a representative directed them to write to the legal department. So they did but again no response from legal.

So it seems this has been an on-going issue. How did WordPress respond to the letters, it is not known. Needless to say this is quite a tricky and complicated issue. The root cause is fundamentalism vs. reformation, there is the policy and responses from WordPress, and there is the unreasonable law of banning the entire blogging service in the entire country. I would have thought that one reasonable approach is to ban those subdomains in dispute get banned – if they are indeed found to be defamatory and that WordPress is judged not have been carried out its legal responsibilities (I cannot say for certain since most of the content are in Turkish and really, I guess it would be somewhat subjective and I am no expert in this fuzzy legal area). It is worth noting the comment made by a reader edezu from Turkey (italics mine):

This person’s (Harun Yahya) current strategy is to block all the sites which attacks him and his ideas. A few months ago, he made a similar move and blocked “eksi sozluk”, an open dictionary which is, in my opinion, a bastion of free speech in turkish online media, with more than 10.000 writers and about 2.000 entries each day.

Adnan Oktar is taking advantage of the gaps in Turkish laws on the internet, which are sadly on their infancy, to silence all the voices against him. Internet poses a real threat to people like him, where ideas are exposed, and people read them!

Yes, one big gap in the Turkish law indeed. My sympathy goes out to the WordPress gang and the Turkish Internet users. I wonder if the European Union will somehow act or put pressure on this Turkish ruling? What’s the lunatic Harun Yahya going to do next – ban Google?

To all of the people out there who feel that this whole entire evolution vs. creationism debate is something of a fringe interest, or an issue that can be safely dismissed – think carefully again. It is an issue that reflects the bigger war between the fundamentalists and the reasonable, the religious fanatics and the rational, lunacy and integrity.

It is good to know though, as one of the readers jimcolella noted, there is already a petition underway:

On that score, I’ve found there is already a Facebook petition to protest the blockage (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=4940847710) and I would strongly recommend all interested parties to write to Al Jazeera’s “Listening Post” programme via their Web site — a great TV prog that covers precisely these types of issues, i.e., freedom of speech… precisely what I’m going to do as soon as I log out of this.

An entire blog publishing service is being censored in an European Union country, the entire freedom to information for the Turkish population is being compromised by a few deranged individuals. This is a truly sad day.

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1. Bekir L. Yildirim - Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Thanks for promoting us to a “EU country” status which will make about half of our people very happy; the other half would care less. Our official status is “candidate” or “in accession talks for membersihip” and many of the EU countries such as France, Netherlands, Austria are hell-bent againts the accession.

As to the Harun Yahya issue, you seem to be more concerned with disparaging Harun Yahya than the freedom of information issue. What to make of this Edip Yukserl cahracter who is no less of a zealot as to his alternative interpretation of Islam? (you conveniently call him ‘reformist ‘ but I must remind you that his reformism may not exactly suit you expecations.

Let;se separate the issues here. You are ET’ist he is ID’ist. But this has nothing to do with either. As a victim of the said Court order, I too condemn the ban. They should let them sort out their religous differences not at the expense of the bloggers’ and readers’ right to access info. . In this day and age blocking a whole segment of the web for a few “bad apples” is called in Turkish folk saying “burning the blanket for a flea”

2. h3nry - Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Thanks Bekir for pointing out my mistake on the EU status of Turkey.

In general I agree with you that the issue mainly concerns with freedom of information on the Turkish court ruling, how WordPress handled the complaints and finally the underlying cause of the entire issue – the battle of ideology.

“Burning blanket for a flea” – I like that. My sympathy goes out to all the Turkish people who are affected.

3. Joe Morreale - Wednesday, August 13, 2008

From Harun Yahya website:


Richard Dawkins, a most ardent supporter of Darwinism, has long accounted for the perfect creation of the universe in terms of the theory of evolution, which has lately suffered a global collapse. In his recent writings and interviews, however, Dawkins has started to express that “life cannot form by chance.” It is an absence of sense and reason to support evolution on one hand and to state that life cannot come about by chance on the other. That is due to the fact that according to the theory of evolution, which Dawkins supports, the existence of life is based on entirely random coincidences.

Dawkins has realized that he can get nowhere with the scenario of chance. But, he is now in the logical impasse as he basically claims that “evolution cannot be a result of coincidences, but has occurred by means of coincidences.” What he should realize is that demagogy no longer works.

If Dawkins sincerely believes in this theory, we’d like to invite him to Turkey, or else we could come to UK to have a discussion. Dawkins should clarify hundreds of questions, only a few of which are listed below, before the cameras. So we, as well as the public, will be able to hear what he has to say. Obviously, it’s no good to engage in unilateral programs. Moreover, with such an attitude Dawkins only deceives himself. Let us send the first 4 volumes of Atlas of Creation to Mr. Dawkins, and let him examine the photographs of the fossils therein which have not changed at all over the hundreds of millions of years. And let him account for them in evolutionary terms according to his much-publicized logic�quot;if he can!

Archeological researches unearthed over a hundred million fossils, proving that life forms were created out of nothing. Still, there is not a single transitional fossil supporting the theory of evolution. If Dawkins is sincere in his claim, he should bring a transitional fossil and announce it to the public as “a transitional form!”
The odds against a functional protein emerging randomly is 10950 to 1�quot;a practical impossibility. (In mathematics, probabilities smaller than 1 over 1050 are accepted as “zero probability.”) If Dawkins is honest, he should point at a mass of proteins that formed by chance or by means of the methods he espouses. Let Dawkins explain us how he can account for the origin of life in evolutionary terms, when even a single protein�quot;the building block of life�quot;cannot form by chance!
Let Dawkins explain us how all colorful, lively, three-dimensional and perfectly clear images, shortly life itself, can form in the pitch dark human brain and who sees this image in the brain!
Let Dawkins explain us in evolutionary terms how conversations, music and all other sounds form in the sound-isolated brain; who listens to and enjoys these sounds, who knows their meaning, who reflects on them consciously and who answers back these sounds!
Let Dawkins ask the same questions to us, and let us give our answers. Let us supply our evidence, and let him bring his�quot;if he has any. Then let the public decide who is right. We want the public to know on a larger scale how Darwinism is a false theory and how it is the greatest deception of the world’s history. We are confident that the days are soon to come when people will laugh, asking themselves “How could we ever believe this theory?” In near future, people will be wondering with amazement how they could ever have been taken in by it. In fact, this is already occurring, at an ever-increasing momentum. World-wide polls reveal statistical data proving this state of affairs.

Darwinism, tried to be kept alive by engaging in demagogy and propaganda, has been refuted in all spheres and it is now widely recognized that it’s no longer possible to defend Darwinism by demagogy. Dawkins’ recent statement along the logic that “evolution cannot be a result of coincidences, but has occurred by means of coincidences” is nothing but a laughable misery of reason.



4. PK - Monday, February 23, 2009

Harun Yahya is a joke and so is the above post. For a good laugh, check out his website “criesofdarwinism.com”. If Yahya isn’t afraid of Dawkins then why is he so adamant about censoring him? Oh, and what is the probability of an even more complex and advanced “creator” that somehow came together to create life “out of nothing”? Anyone care to explain in detail how that’s supposed to work?

5. Anthony north - Sunday, July 5, 2009

Harun Yahyah (Adnan Oktar) and some of his cronies have been jailed for blackmail and sex with underaged girls. So even if he was able to debate Dawkins he is in prison. Oktar’s morality is questionable. He seems to be using his cult, and Islamic beliefs, for criminal ends. As such his actions are insulting to muslims and he should be banned from the net in Turkey. Then we’ll see how much he likes a taste of his own medicine.

By the way Joe Morreale is probably a pseudonym of Jamshed Kunnoth’s. He is a crony of Oktar’s that has an homo erotic fixation on his master.

6. Abu AFak - Sunday, July 12, 2009

Joe Morreale shouted desperately:


We are waiting too Joe. Waitng for some REAL evidnce to come from your creationist leader that isn’t as faked as this:

by the way Joe, if your leader really wanted to debate Dawkins he could have done so on the net. Instead of trying to get Dawkins banned. Which shows how scared Harun Yahya is of criticism. He’s an ignorant coward, not a messiah.

7. Simon Phipp - Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A clone cultist for Adnan Oktar cut and pasted:


Dawkins doesn’t waste his time debating know nothing creationists. Here is why:

If you really need to know what Dawkins thinks about Harun Yahya’s religious fantasies read The Greatest Show on Earth:


Yahya gets a drubbing in the book.

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