Turkish President likened to Che Guevara by friend and foe
A former member of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) said during a live broadcast that he had once told Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that the only difference between him and Ernesto Che Guevara was that Guevara did not pray while he did.
Now a member of the tiny national socialist Patriotic Party, Ethem Sancak, a businessman who has been close to Erdogan till recently, said in his conversation with the Patriotic Party's leader in a broadcast:
"Mr. President once asked me, 'What kind of a man is this Che Guevara?' He was about to visit Cuba. I said, 'Sir, it'd take me hours to tell about him, and you don't have the time. Let me tell you, the only difference between you and Che Guevara is, he didn't pray and you do.'"
Sancak earlier admitted in a TV interview that he had declared his love to Erdogan.
“While working on his campaign to get him elected prime minister, from my hometown Siirt, I met him. I saw his honesty and courage. I saw his opposition to oppression, his ability to protect the victim. The more I saw him, I feel in love [with him]. To be honest, during my days as a leftist, I could not understand the love between Mevlana [Jelaluddin Rumi, the poet] and [his companion and spiritual guide] Shams al-Tabrizi. As I got to know Erdogan, I realized that such a kind of divine love between two men is possible. When I [first] declared my love to him, I was already among the top 20 on the Forbes’ list. I did not need to wait for any favors by holding on to Erdogan’s coattails.”
Former Turkish prime minister and now the leader of opposition Future Party also said on Monday that Erdogan could in fact be compared to Guevara, but not the current Erdogan.
Ahmet Davutoglu told the host of a show in a TV broadcast:
"I hail Che Guevara as a valiant revolutionary, a symbol of the suppressed and exploited people. You can draw a comparison between Che Guevara and the Erdogan of 20 years ago (...) Back then we all had a revolutionary spirit. I was paid a single salary. I could have never guessed then Tayyip Erdogan would one day channel funds to his relatives."