MESOP OPINION : The End of Fethullah Gülen‘s Utopian Society: The Awaited Golden Generation

June 27, 2014 by By Dr Aland Mizell: KT News – Those who still think that Fethullah Gülen has nothing to do with politics or does not have any agenda must be naïve or live in total ignorance. Gülen always has an agenda, He has always been involved in politics, but he managed to convince the people that he was not. Nevertheless, at all times Gülen had his political agenda.

At first, he wanted to control all state institutions in Turkey, such as offering Islamic banking, Islamic insurance, Islamic education, hospitals, social and political institutions, as well as accommodating and appeasing the pronouncements and formulation of policies and programs based on his version of Islam. He then easily implemented these strategies around the world. For decades Gülen has been preparing for a struggle in Turkey in order to have a state within the Turkish state today, what Prime Minister Erodgan calls a “parallel devlet, “a parallel state.“ The leader and founder of this parallel state is Gülen himself.

In 1999, just before he escaped to the USA and took up exile in America, several of Gülen’s videos were leaked. He was advising his believers, “You must move in the arteries of the system without anyone noticing your existence until you reach all the power centers. You must wait until such time as you have gotten all the state power.” Many of his followers believe Gülen is a holy man, that he speaks absolute truth, and that he cannot make any mistakes, and, therefore, they do not question him on anything. Those who wrote books and articles revealing that Gülen has a political agenda, is infiltrating his people into Turkish institutions, and is a danger to Turkish democracy, usually ended up in jail.

Events now signal the end of Gülen’s Utopian society and of his long awaited “golden generation” because Gülen destroyed himself when he tried to replace the democratically elected Prime Minister Erdogan; however, his attempt failed, but not without revealing his real agenda and motives. Also, it revealed that Gülen has developed a parallel state inside the Turkish state. If the Prime Minister does not destroy the parallel state, they will destroy the Prime Minster and his family. According to sociologist Karl Mannheim, the thinking of human groups is based on two categories: ideology and utopia. The concept of ideology argues that a set of beliefs affects our outlook on the world; in other words, a system of ideas and ideals, especially ones that form the basis of economic or political theory and policy, creates a worldview that may come in conflict with other worldviews. Ideology is our most closely held set of our values and feelings, and it acts as the filter through which we see everything and everybody. Utopian thinking is not at all concerned with what really exists; rather it seeks to change the situation that exists. Such thinking is reflected in Gülen’s view of the Muslim world’s existing social order and in his criticism of the direction the Muslim world is going. He seeks to raise a new generation that will bring a good social order based on his love of the sultans of the Ottoman Empire, heirs to the Abbasid Caliphate and the defenders of Sunni Islam.

Gülen views the Ottomans Empire as the most just empire, one that from Istanbul ruled the lands between Anatolia and North Africa, as well as part of Europe; Gülen glorifies it as a rule of almost six centuries that brought peace, love, justice, equality, and value for humanity and produced a culture of civilization. Once the empire collapsed after World War I, Western countries colonized the Islamic world with its resources. Gülen claims that more than fifty-two independent Muslim countries are subservient to those who gave them independence. Muslims had gained control of a large portion of the world’s resources, but now millions of Muslims live in poverty and lack human dignity, Gülen is very critical of Western ideologies, the Christian church, and theories such as capitalism and communism, holding to his view that Islam is the complete system. Consequently, Gülen was trying to change the misconception about Islam and to present it as the complete system and an alternative to capitalism and communism. He, therefore, calls for “The Waited Golden Generations” to follow the teaching of his way of Islam, a complete way of life in which nothing can escape from it. Without economic might, Muslims cannot be independent from the Western domination, so Muslims must first be economically independent; and then the military will follow. According to Gülen, the best way to defeat the enemy is to use the enemy’s weapons against the enemy, that is, technology, democracy, and the like.

Gülen sees capitalism and Islam as conflicting systems. For Gülen, capitalism killed Islamic generations, but in order for civilizations to be long lived, they must have an Islamic faith. It is true that faith in God is the biggest drive for one to do right thing for society and for himself or herself. Only with the light of faith can people realize their essential nature with its entire dimension and penetrate the inner reality of existence. Using these truths but for his own purpose and movement, Gülen teaches that the golden generation is the only righteous generation who will overflow with love, and that current generations are lost having become alienated from society. In order to have them integrated into the society again, his leaders should be able to provide a fertile environment where they can take the right path that leads to knowing Allah.

Gülen argues that all sorts of problems plague the world, such social unrest around the globe, political instabilities, mass poverty and destitution, kidnapping, sectarian killings, homicides, homosexuality, family break ups, drug addictions, and HIV/ AIDS. Gülen preached for a long time that many Muslims are attracted by the materialistic and often atheistic way of life. They wanted their happiness through the pure materialistic approach to living. In his view, the consequences of such a life of materialism caused these problems. His teachings present the West as essentially the embodiment of atheism, an example of the defeat of religion, and the consequences of getting rid of God in people’s lives; thus, the West is faced with a moral crisis and a spiritual vacuum. Western civilization developed as a fertile ground for all kinds of immorality to take roots. Therefore, in Gülen’s dogma Christianity could not offer a solution to many problems; neither capitalism nor secularism solved the problems but rather created them. That is why it is not a surprise that Gülen opened up more than 150 schools in the USA within a short period of time.

Gülen and his followers believe that his way of Islam offers the only genuine solution to such problems, because Islam is not only a just religion, but also a complete code of life. All the facets of life, public and private alike, are covered under the Islamic law and code of conduct. In the past, Gülen’s biggest obstacle and biggest fear was the Turkish military. That is why Gülen wanted to get rid of the officers and make the institution weak. The second obstacle for Gülen’s ideology to be spread in the Kurdish region of South Eastern Turkey was the KCK and the PKK. Gülen wanted to implement his utopian society in Turkey via schools, NGO’s, business unions, and interfaith dialogues, among many other tactics. He wanted to become economically independent and powerful, domestically and internationally, and then to bring the Turkic Central Asian countries into the Turkish sphere of influence. Because of the training in his schools, Gülen knew that the graduates from his schools some day would take higher positions in the government and then would promote his ideology and speak the Turkish language. Gülen dreamed that at some point his graduates in the United Nations would be loyal to him and to Turkey. To make Turkey the leader of the Islamic world, he taught that Allah has set apart the Turks to spread Islam and to bring back the Ottoman Empire that was one of the greatest Islamic systems of government.

Gülen believes his golden generations will establish righteous cities.

He sees the lack of ethical values in the world and envisions a utopian generation who is well educated in the sciences and well-rounded in morality, ostensibly with ethical training in equality, justice, peace, harmony, and service to humankind. According to his ideology, current generations have no ideals, because the main values taught in schools are those of material success. Therefore, in his dream, his schools would teach kids to have faith in Allah, loyalty to him, and particular ideals so they would shape and bring order to disorder world. In other words, Gülenists worked day and night to promote Gülen’s ways of Islam as the third way, which means its goal is not simply widespread religious conversion, but a quest to show non-Muslims that Muslims can embrace modernity and integrate into the wider community. Gülen and his followers began by undermining the credibility of rival social groups and their competing styles of thoughts.

Why It Is the End of Gülen’s Utopian Society and the Awaited Golden Generation After Gülen publically gave an emotional sermon in which he called upon Allah to punish Erdogan, saying, “Allah, bring fire on their homes,” although he  did not directly mentioned the Prime Minister’s name, it was obvious, so that the people, including his followers, were shocked. Everyone wondered how such a spiritual person and leader could bring a curse on the Prime Minister instead of praying for him. Thus, Gülen made one of the gravest mistakes of his life in cursing Erdogan, which was widely broadcast on Turkish television.

Gülen’s organization has already lost those who think that he made a mistake in attacking the Prime Minister and who allied themselves with the leftist party.  Gülen made a mistake in attacking Prime Minister Erdogan’s ethics, while ignoring how he and his followers illegally gained power by lies, distortion, manipulation, stealing exam answers, bribing officials, illegally obtaining diplomatic passports, as well as other tactics. I believe the government will reveal more, so that the public will learn more about this secret organization.  I am sure the government will tell us soon Gülen’s source and technique for getting money to run his mullti-billion dollar empire. Also, they will reveal the other face of Gülen, showing that he is not what he said he is. The Prime Minister wanted to end the bloodshed between the Kurds and the government. Erdogan understands that the Kurdish problem is not going to be solved militarily or by assimilation but instead by recognizing and listening to what the Kurds want and demand. Gülenist judges attempted to question the head of the MIT, Hakan Fidan, about his secret talks with the PKK because Gülen’s approach to the Kurdish issue is the same as the previous military approach, either you kill all the Kurdish rebels who ask for their basic rights or you assimilate them and indoctrinate them in Gülen‘s ideology.

Another mistake Gülen made was that he did not return to Turkey when there was no legal problem and when the Prime Minister asked him to come back to his home country. But now many Turks believe Gülen is a CIA agent who works against Turkish interests.

Corruption knows no loyalty but money and power. No matter how good the person is, power and fame will corrupt him. Only very few in history have not become corrupted by power and fame. Powerful people like Gülen do not want anyone to be a more powerful leader than they are and would kill them if they had a chance to become the world’s leader and be a dominant power. What Gülen and Erdogan say in general may not be correct, but what they say about each other is correct because of their struggle for dominance. This desire for power is why the competition is so fierce, given their similarities. Gülen and Erdogan both think Islam is not to be linked to any other religion in the world. Both believe Islam is prefect, absolute, and all encompassing in its guidance for mankind. Both believe that Islam is not a religion in the common, distorted meaning of the word, confining itself to the private life of man, but that it is a complete way of life, one that caters to all fields of human beings. Both believe Islam provides guidance for all walks of life for individuals in the social, material, moral, economical, political, legal, cultural, national, and international arenas. Both believe Islam offers the best culture of civilization; it is an economic system and a way of doing business; it is a polity and a special sort of society, showing a way of running the family. Both pray five times a day; both fast; and both adopt the legacy of the Ottoman Empire. Both believe in the superiority of Turkish nationalism and that Turkey is the greatest nation on earth. Both believe Turks should be the leader of Islam; both want to contain Iran; both are against a secular state and a secular military. Both are against Israel; both are Sunnis; both have an agenda to serve Allah and Islam.

So why do they fight? Gülen thinks his way is the better way since Allah chose him while the people chose Erdogan.  Gülen is a very proud person who is a very authoritarian dictator who rules with no room for other opinions in the house. Gülen does not want to follow anyone since he thinks Allah has chosen him. According to him, he talks daily and has contact with Allah and Mohammed. He creates an image that he is absolute, holy, and truthful, and, therefore, such a person cannot follow another human.

The Turkish government removed and continues to remove Gülenists from positions of influence within the government. The Prime Minister publically vowed to go after Gülen’s followers likening them to liars, a cult, false prophets, etc. In the past many people were afraid to speak against Gülen because many of the judiciary and police were Gülenists, but now they are not afraid anymore. The government has closed down the preparatory schools run by Gülen. Most of Gülen’s followers have broken the silence and now speak out against him, including the number one person in the organization, Latif Erodgan, who wrote a biography of Gülen Kucuk Dunyam, and who knows everything about Gülen and his organization. Gülenists used to use public domain to run the show, but this year the government did not allow the annual Turkish language Olympics in Turkey and did not give them any more free rides. Some of his schools in Azerbeyjan also have been closed.

Erdogan broke two taboos in Turkey, Ataturkism and Gülenism. Formerly, it was crime to criticize either of them, with the penalty of ending up in jail or receiving a heavy fine. Gülen and his followers would win all the cases, but this is not the outcome anymore because the government removed and reassigned thousands of police and prosecutors, including the Supreme Court judges and prosecutors. No longer can he flip-flop with the people, nor can he convince the Turkish people that his followers are purely a religious group, nor can he claim to the Westerners that they are purely non-political. They no longer have a monopoly on religion in Turkey, because the government now leaves room for other religious groups to compete with Gülen and had deconstructied his monopoly on religion and knowledge. Internationally, he will have a hard time explaining to the people that the organization is only about love, peace, and tolerance.

The consequences of his cursing the Prime Minister continue. Applicants who stay at the Gülen institutions are no longer provided the answers in advance to the national police entrance exam. Now the public knows why they claim their students have excellent test scores and win all the Academic Olympic medals. Now people know why Gülen “knows everything”; whereas in the past people thought he was talking to Allah, now they know he was talking to the police intelligence officers who were giving him advance information about what was going to happen. Gülenists will not have any more chances to indoctrinate youth to follow him and his ideology.

Gülen always took the side of the strong and used the government in the high profile Ergenkon and Baloz trials that have led to the imprisonment of more than 236 active and retired army personals, including former Chief of Staff General, Ilker Başbuğ. Now all of them are out of prison, and surely they will want justice to be served. The same is true for the KCK. Gülenists accused every Kurd who asked for basic rights of being terrorists and put them in jail. It is time for Gülen and his followers, the Gülenists, to pay their time in jail.

Dr. Aland Mizell is with the MCI and a regular contributor to The Kurdistan Tribune,, Mindanao Times and Kurdish Media.You may email the author