Back in December, CHP lawmaker Eren Erdem discovered that it’s not a particularly good idea to accuse President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of supplying Sarin gas to terrorists.
Following accusations Erden made in an interview with RT, the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office opened an investigation into the deputy for “treason.”
“The paramilitary organization Ottoman Hearths is sharing my address [on Twitter] and plans a raid [on my house],” he said, in the wake of the investigation’s announcement. “I am being targeted with death threats because I am patriotically opposed to something that tramples on my country's prestige.”
Of course Erdem isn’t the first person to feel the wrath of Turkey’s belligerent autocrat.
In October, for instance, a 15-year-old boy was arrested outside an internet cafe for allegedly “insulting” the President. Less than a month later, two people were detained in the country’s southeastern province of Sanliurfa for posting “insults and curses” directed at Erdogan on social media. The pair were charged with “propagandizing on behalf of terrorist organizations.” Similarly, a 17-year-old was arrested at his home in December for posting something derisive about Erdogan on Facebook.
Of course the most hilarious example came when Erdogan put a medical doctor on trial for posting the following on social media:
Amusingly, the court decided it needed to bring in Tolkein experts to adjudicate the matter because “a judge said he did not know enough about the creature to make an appropriate decision.”
Well now, in what may well be the most absurd Erdogan insult story to date, a Turkish truck driver known only as “Ali D.” is suing his own wife for cursing at Erdogan when the President spoke on television.
“A man in Izmir has filed a petition for libel against his wife for insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan,” Today’s Zaman reports, citing the private Ihlas news agency.
"I kept on warning her,” Ali D. told Yeni Safak. “I said: why are you doing this? Our president is a good person and did good things for Turkey.”
“Record it and lodge a complaint," Ali’s wife reportedly told her husband.
So that’s just what Ali did. He filed a libel suit and she, understandably, filed for divorce.
"Even if it is my father, who swears against or insults the president, I would not forgive and I would complain," Ali said, summing up the level of “respect” Turks have for their beloved dictator.
Somehow, we imagine Ali will prevail in court.