Sümeyye Erdoğan Bayraktar, daughter of Turkish President Erdoğan, spoke at the 15th annual MAS-ICNA convention, held on December 26-28, 2016 in Chicago. She talked about the "terrorist Gülenist cult" and warned about the influence of Turkish dissident Fathullah Gülen in the U.S. She said that "the Muslim community in [the U.S.] is under threat" by a cult "more dangerous than Daesh." Defending the crackdown on journalists in her country following the failed coup, she said: "I cannot imagine that a journalist promoting Al-Qaeda and its activities as freedom-fighting on The New York Times would not face any judicial outcome."
Sümeyye Erdoğan: "Following the failed coup of July 15, the government has taken steps to weed out these people who supported the attack on democracy: the Glenist cult. Over the years, vast networks of cult members had infiltrated the bureaucracy like a fifth column. These people have been identified and mostly removed. The Turkish people, who have lived in fear of this cult and their stranglehold on power, are now able to breathe freely.
"'And they plotted, and Allah ruined their plot. And Allah is the best of plotters. Surah Ali 'Imran, Verse 54.
"It is claimed, for example, that the Turkish president and the Turkish government are curtailing freedom of the press and imprisoning journalists who criticize the president or the government.
"The fact is, every person, regardless of their profession, has to face the full consequences of law if they have links to a terrorist organization or promote terrorist propaganda. There is no one journalist in Turkey that is imprisoned for journalistic activities, nor for criticizing the president. Yet I cannot imagine a journalist promoting Al-Qaeda and its activities as freedom fighting, say, on The New York Times, will not face any judicial outcome.
"Another claim is that democracy is under attack in Turkey. Of course it is. 'Fetah,' the Gülen cult, and their international allies have little regard for democracy and the rule of law in Turkey, and will engage in any activity to undermine the democratically elected president and government.
"Gülen is considered to be so close to Allah in his close circles that, Allah forgive me, he is seen as being above Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon Him. Gülen claims that Surat Noor of the Noble Koran refers to him. All of this, my dear friends, is backed by concrete evidence, it is reality, and unfortunately not a joke. What's perhaps even more interesting is that Fethulla Gülen has been residing safely right here in the States for the last 17 years. The truly frightening fact is that the Gülenists own the largest system of charter schools in the United States, with more than 150 schools. So this terrorist cult receives $500 million of your tax money every year.
"What happened in Turkey is a cautionary tale. The Muslim community in this country as well is under threat. Let me stress one thing: 'Fetah' is actually more dangerous than Daesh [ISIS]. It is easier to turn some hopeless, desperate, uneducated people into militants. They have little to lose. When someone comes and promises them with Paradise, they may give it a try. 'Fetah,' on the other hand, takes possession of the minds and the hearts of well-educated doctors, engineers, generals, scientists, etc. through its highly hierarchical and closed system using the method of taqiyya, dissimulation.
Man escorts little girl with flowers on stage. Music. Photographer takes photos.
Man: "Thank you very much. It is an honor [unintelligible] a gift as a Koran. But to come from Turkey from the president himself, it is really special.
"I'd like to send a message to President Erdoğan. On behalf of our community, thank you very much. There's a special bond between us here in Chicago and in the United States. Our Muslim community looks up to Turkey and its leadership. We wish you the best, may Allah protect you, protect Turkey, and always Chicago and the United States as your second home. We will always fight for you, stand by you, and pray for you. Please give our message, warmest thanks and appreciation to President Erdoğan and entire Turkey family. May Allah reward you. We love you all. Thank you very much."