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US citizen killed on flotilla was reportedly shot four times in head

By admin
Thursday, June 3, 2010 14:20 EDT
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“One of the nine people killed in the Israeli raid on an aid flotilla Monday was a 19-year-old man with dual U.S.-Turkish citizenship, a U.S. State Department official said,” CBS News reports.

The official identified the victim as Furkan Dogan, who was believed to have been residing in Turkey.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the matter has not been officially confirmed by the U.S. government.

The official said the victim had been shot but it was not clear who shot him. He was among eight of the dead being mourned at a funeral in Istanbul Thursday.

ABC NEWS adds, “A forensic report said he was shot at close range, with four bullets in his head and one in his chest, according to the Anatolian news agency.”

Dogan was a high school student studying social sciences in the town of Kayseri in central Turkey. He was born in the United States and moved to Turkey at the age of 2. He will be buried in his hometown tomorrow.

Dogan’s body was returned to Turkey today along with eight others, all Turkish nationals, who were on board the Mavi Marmara.

The nationalities of the dead were determined after post-mortem examinations at a forensic institute in Istanbul, where the bodies were flown early Thursday, Anatolia said.

The nine activists who died in an Israeli raid on aid ships bound for Gaza were shot dead, the Anatolia news agency reported.

Forensic experts in Istanbul found bullet marks on the bodies of all the victims.

The experts said the exact circumstances of the activists’ deaths would become clear in a balistics examination that would take about a month to complete.

The New York Times reports, “The Cihan news agency reported that Mr. Dogan had one bullet in the chest and four bullets fired into his head from close range.”

An official from Humanitarian Relief Foundation, or İHH, NGO that organized the flotilla to Gaza, identified the U.S. citizen as 19-year-old Furkan Doğan, originally from the central Turkish town of Kayseri. Doğan had four bullet wounds to the head and one to the chest, Ömer Yağmur of İHH, told Anatolia.

The 19 wounded activists deported from Israel were also suffering from gun wounds, the chief doctor of the hospital in Ankara treating them said.

“The patients generally have serious injuries to their chests, abdomens and limbs. What we have is mostly gun wounds,” Metin DoÄŸan said in televised remarks.

At the conservative Powerline blog, John Hinderaker writes, “The facts are not entirely clear, but it appears that Dogan was born in the United States to Turkish parents who returned to Turkey not long thereafter. (The ABC story says he was two years old.) Apparently Dogan had lived in Turkey with his family since that time. He apparently was, in other words, a “birthright citizen,” solely by virtue of the fact that his parents were residing in the U.S. when he was born.”

If that is the case–and, again, the facts are not yet entirely clear–it is silly to call him an “American of Turkish descent.” He, like the other members of his family, was a Turk. The idea that his presence among the dead raises a special diplomatic problem is absurd; if it does, it shouldn’t.

Coincidentally, Scott Rasmussen published a poll this morning that found 58 percent of voters favor the abolition of birthright citizenship. I think the majority is right on this issue. Birthright citizenship is an anachronism, and in some respects a dangerous one, in an era when millions of people travel internationally and millions more enter the U.S. illegally, some for the specific purpose of having a baby here.

As for Dogan, it is reported that he was shot five times at close range, four times in the head. If that is correct, it is reasonable to infer that he was one of those attacking Israeli soldiers with a club, knife or other weapon and was shot in self-defense. The Times quotes his brother saying, on behalf of the family, “we were not sorry to hear that he fell like a martyr.”

(with AFP report)

 
 
 
 
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