When the police took me under custody, my record was disclosed. They realized that I was searched and not found to appear at the court. Anyway, I had been acquitted in my absence. The records also showed that I was an absentee conscript, that I had been evading military service. They took me around from one police station and military office to another. Finally, I spent two-and-a-half days in —15 degree Celsius weather at the Province Gendarmerie in Maslak [Istanbul]. My cell was ten-feet long and ten-feet wide. I warmed myself by walking 2,000 steps in that cell. I would feel warm for five minutes and then start freezing again. There were about fifteen of us detained there, all absentees. When I reacted to the soldiers for making us naked and beating us, they got ready to attack me. “Bring out the bayonets, heat them over the heater, and beat him up” kind of readiness. Of course, they are privates doing their military service as well. When they said, “Take off your underwear, we will control your butt,” I took off my underwear and faced them with my front. They became furious. When the sergeant explained that I was different from the others, that I was the political type, they backed off a little bit. They tied my feet to the chair I was sitting on and my arms to the people sitting on my sides. I told them that I had no intention of running away. I had been caught after running away for twenty-one years. With cuffs on my hands and feet, they surrendered me to my unit.
KeywordsMilitary Service Basic Training Military Office Conscientious Objector Wounded Soldier
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