There’s more to national feuds than marches and angry signboards and expelling of envoys, and Turkey is here to show you how it’s done.
As its current diplomatic spat with the Netherlands escalates, after the Dutch refused to let Turkish ministers hold rallies in their territory, Turkey’s government and its people have found new, innovative ways to express their anger. Read and learn.
1) Stabbing and squeezing oranges
The Dutch have long been associated with orange, their national colour. What better way to wound them, then, than to attack the fruit? Or so thought supporters of Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who were seen this weekend wielding knives and stabbing and squeezing out fresh oranges at a demonstration. If you’re lamenting the waste of vitamin C, don’t worry - they then drank the juice, while looking menacingly into the cameras.
2) ‘Deporting’ cows
As the spat worsened, Turkey’s red meat association announced it was sending back a consignment of Dutch cattle because it was “starting to cause serious problems” and adding that “in future we do not want animal products from Holland”. Bulent Tunc, the head of association, said the move was symbolic, but tell that to those heartbroken bovines forced to abandon their dream country.
3) Throwing around ‘Nazi’ accusations
Calling people “Nazis” isn’t just the go-to tactic for lazy internet commenters any more. President Erdogan in particular is a fan, hurling the word at Netherlands and Germany (which took the Netherlands’ side) over the course of the last two weeks. While this seemed to have hit a nerve and drew condemnatory responses from both governments, perhaps Erdogan didn’t mean it to be quite as insulting as they thought - last year, he praised Adolf Hitler’s Germany as an example of an effective government.
4) Hijacking Justin Bieber’s Twitter account
In the feud between the two nations, Twitter became a hostage. Hundreds of accounts of high-profile people and organisations such as BBC North America, the European Parliament, Amnesty International and pop singer Justin Bieber’s Japanese account were hijacked.
Nobody is safe, even Justin Bieber's Japanese account got hacked pic.twitter.com/urlSw4yaOy— Arjun Kharpal (@ArjunKharpal) March 15, 2017
No need to look too far for the inspiration, though. The hacked accounts all began posting swastika-studded, anti-Nazi messages in Turkish against Holland and Germany, just in case you thought Erdogan’s words were too subtle.