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Turkish Cultural Center Celebrates the End of Ramadan

Photo: QueensPost

August 5, 2013 Staff Report

The Turkish Cultural Center set up a large tent in L/Cpl Thomas P. Noonan Park for four nights last week to celebrate the end of the Islamic holiday Ramadan.

This was the TCC’s ninth year of hosting the event and the group offered Turkish food to all who came—Muslims and non Muslims.  Some of the attendees were homeless, while others were just looking for a square meal. However, some took part to be adventurous.

On Friday night, TCC offered its guests lentil soup, Turkish beef stew over rice, salad and baklava for dessert.

“We enjoy hosting this event, and sharing food and the good feelings,” said TCC Queens VP, Oguzhan Turan.

State Sen. Mike Gianaris attended the event and said it was good to see people from all faiths and backgrounds come together.

Photo: QueensPost

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I’m going with “local person.” Who knows who Anonymous2013 is? Probably a trouble-maker!


Instead of talking and judging about these events if one truly wants to educate themselves they should take the time to actually go to one of these events and see it from their own eyes. How is it such a possibility that there are people being against something so nice and peaceful? Is it the friendship they bring along that bothers these people? Is it the kindness that makes these people outraged that they have to go out of their way to find the nastiest lies about these loving people?? Maybe its the idea that people hate. Giving food to so many different people, having each person eat under the same tent without being judged by their race, wealth, or any other discriminatory possibilities. Why is it that people are so against something that is truly nice? And there are people putting all these news about the helicopters gazing over the property of Gulen? Saying that they are raising an army? For Gods sake if they were, wouldnt the government have an idea about that since they have been living in that property for a good amount of time? I agree with one of the commenters who told everyone that we should educate ourselves. Rather than going with the accusations that people are throwing out there maybe we can take the time and actually try learning about them.. Overall it was a great event and I love going there every year. Seeing different people from different backgrounds makes me feel great about the neighborhood i am living in and the people who live in them.

South Side Johnny

You could say that any gesture towards the community is also a step towards assimilation. when different cultures come together, we all have to adapt & assimilate to each other. Whatever, it makes the overall community stronger. I had a 10 grade English class last spring (this was in LIC) that had 16 different nationalities in represented by 33 students. All of them got along well- you could sense how each of them explored their culture from the past and who they are today, and they found a way to make it work. Queens is their home as much as it is anyone else’s, and if we show them how well America works, they’ll all become Americans themselves.


@ Decency – although donating $50,000 (which they will declare on their taxes) to a worthy cause is an honorable thing to do, it has nothing to do with assimilation into American culture. As a fellow American, it is a wonderful gesture to donate to a cause that will benefit other Americans. I have many muslim women friends who adamantly refuse to wear a niqab because it is so very oppressive to women. These are women who are smart enough to not follow their Islam religion from A-Z. They eat pork & drink alchohol, and they know how to call a spade, a spade. God Bless America!



You are a mean-spirited j..k.

These guys gave $50,000 after the hurricane to some Queens group. They also honored the guys at Bar 43 (a bar !!!) for their work during the hurricane.
And you say they don’t assimilate… Maybe you need to assimilate…and be an open minded New Yorker. A-hole.


Most of the Turkish people I know are friendly and modern and open-minded. I’ve always wanted to visit Turkey- Istanbul, Capodoccia, & Ephesus. Interesting that you mention Trojan Horse, you can do a day trip to Troy from Istanbul ^ see the ruins of the city that was beseiged by the Greeks. I’m glad to see that Turkish people are welcome in our community, along with everyone else. They’ve contributed nicely and make our neighborhood interesting.


I do hope my previous 5 comments make it on to this thread. Freedom of speech and thought should prevail. PC censorship is detrimental to everyone.


Im sure the TCC Ramadan Food Festival was good fun. However. Educate yourself……

“Modern Day Trojan Horse” should be required reading for all citizens of Western democracies who urgently need to understand the Islamic Hijra doctrine and the threat it represents. The book sounds the alarm for the cautious evaluation of what may appear to be innocent religious practice in our midst but has sinister motives to transform our societies forever.
By Sam Solomon and Elias Al Maqdisi ( available at


Be wary of the TCC as they are affiliated and funded with the Gulen Movement. It is always prudent to be informed about those who live amongst you. Often times things are not what they seem…..

The Muslims in question are Turks who occupy a 45-acre compound in rural Pennsylvania that is owned and operated by Fethullah Gulen>

Exclusive: Obama Administration turns Blind Eye to Muslim Foreign Militia in Pennsylvania
by PAUL L. WILLIAMS, PHD April 9, 2010

Christian militias have been raided in Michigan and Ohio, their members rounded up and tossed in prison and their caches of weapons confiscated.
But a well-armed Muslim militia – comprised not of American citizens but foreign militants – operates under the noses of federal and state law enforcement officials.

If you don’t it, pay a visit to Saylorsburg, Pennsylvania, in the heart of the Pocono Mountains.

“These guys use fully automatic weapons – AK-47s – for target practice,” one local businessman says. “We called the FBI but nothing has been done to stop them.”

The Muslims have been here for years,” another resident says. “They’ve been engaged in training for guerilla warfare.”
The Muslims in question are Turks who occupy a 45-acre compound that is owned and operated by Fethullah Gulen.

Entrance to the compound is forbidden to outsiders.
Sentries remain on duty – day and night – at a hut before the wide metal gate. Within the hut are high definition televisions that project images from security cameras.

Residents complain of a low flying helicopter that circles their community in search of any unwanted intruders to the property. At the heart of the compound is a massive chalet that serves as Gulen’s residence. Gulen has been identified as one of the world’s richest and most powerful Muslims – and also as the most dangerous.

From his base in Pennsylvania, he has been responsible for the replacement of the secular government in Turkey with an Islamic regime.
With assets in excess of $30 billion, he has wielded political allegiances in Washington that have resulted in the placement of Turkish Muslims in the CIA, NSA, FBI, and other national security organizations.
He has created well-heeled lobbies to promote the cause of Islam and to develop Islamic candidates for political office.

He has formed close friendships with Bill and Hillary Clinton, former Secretaries of State James Baker and Madeleine Albright, and George W. Bush.

He has also established over 90 Islamic schools (madrassahs) throughout the United States, where studentsare indoctrinated in the tenets of political Islam. These charter schools are funded by American taxpayers.
One school – Tarek ibn Zayed Academy (TiZA) in Minnesota – has been so radically Islamic and subversive in nature that the Minnesota Department of Education issued two citations against it and the American Civil Liberties Union is suing it.

The purpose of every Gulen school, according to the Middle East Media Research Institute, is train Muslim students to become lawyers, accountants, and political leaders so that they can take an active part in the restoration of the Ottoman Empire and the Islamization of the Western World.

Gulen also imports thousands of graduate students from Turkey – at the expense of U.S. taxpayers – to study at American universities. More foreign graduate students in the U.S. hail from Turkey than from any other country.
Several of these students live at the compound and serve as guards and paramilitary officials. They do not wear skullcaps or Islamic garb but rather business suits with white shirts and ties.

One, encountered by this reporter on a recent visit, attended Marywood University in Scranton, Pennsylvania; another studied at East Stroudsburg University, several miles from the compound.
Gulen’s stated dream is to restore the Ottoman Empire and a universal caliphate.

He fled Turkey in 1999 to escape arrest for creating a terrorist organization – the Fethullah Gulen Community.

He received protection from high-ranking officials of the Clinton and Bush administrations, who believed that Gulen could play a decisive role in the struggle over Central Asia’s oil and gas wealth. This belief was based on the premise that Muslims within the newly created Russia republics could be swayed away from the influence of Iran and Shiia Islam by Gulen’s doctrine of Sufi Ottomanism.

With CIA aid, Gulen established hundreds of madrassahs and cemaats (Islamic communities) not only in his native Turkey but such places as Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan.

Gulen’s triumph over his secularTurkish foes came with the election of November 3, 2002, when the Justice and Development Party (a party which he created from his base in Pennsylvania) gained control of the Turkish government.

Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a Gulen disciple – as is Turkey’s President Abdullah Gul.

Thanks to such Islamists, Turkey has transformed from a secular state into an Islamic country with 85,000 active mosques – one for every 350 citizens – the highest number per capita in the world, 90,000 imams, more imams than teachers and physicians – and thousands of state-run Islamic schools.
Despite the rhetoric of European Union accession, Turkey has transferred its alliance from Europe and the United States to Russia and Iran. It has moved toward friendship with Hamas, Hezbollah, and Syria and created a pervasive anti-Christian, anti-Jewish, and anti-America animus throughout the populace.

Gulen presents himself as a humanitarian, a moderate Muslim, and a proponent of interfaith dialogue.

But a visit to the compound provides an opposite impression. The property is off-limits to all visitors and intruders; it is guarded by radical Turks who seek to establish a universal caliphate whose jurisdiction will include the USA, and the Golden Generation Worship and Retreat Center, which supports interfaith relations, is a sentry hut.

But Gulen is a master of deception.

In one of his directives to his followers, Gulen proclaimed that in order to reach the ideal Muslim society “every method and path is acceptable, [including] lying to people.”

In the past five years, several attempts have been made by The Department of Homeland Security to deport him. But in 2008 a federal court ruled that Gulen was an individual with “extraordinary ability in the field of education” who merited permanent residence status in the U.S.

Strange to say, Gulen lacks any formal education and three of the letters attesting to his “extraordinary ability” came from CIA agents. Contributing Editor Paul L. Williams is the author of The Day of Islam: The Annihilation of America and the Western World, The Al Qaeda Connection, and other best-selling books. He is a frequent guest on such national news networks as ABC News, CBS News, Fox News, MSNBC, and NPR. Visit his website at

Read more: Family Security Matters
Under Creative Commons License: Attribution

Old sunnysider

I was there last Saturday had a great time
enjoy the food met couple of nice
people. Great atmosphere! Looking forward
to seeing this kind of events in the
future. Thank you TCC Queens!

world of human

Also there is not only enjoying the turkish food , you are going to feel “youwelcome” …I

world of human

I think they are trying to do dialog between different culteres , which is nice.bettwr to go there and enjoy to have turkish foot with our neibours…


Christian and other groups can rent space in public schools, etc., to hold non-religious events. Not a problem. The court case concerned church groups that wanted to hold church _services_ in public schools, which was denied.

The end of Ramadan dinner is not a religious event and is open to all. Nothing religious involving worship was said or done.

Alas! poor Yorick!

As long as we’re flying off topic here, does anyone know what the TCC’s official stance on gay marriage is?

Sara Clark

Queens is a great place to live and I wish we had more groups like TCC Queens. Their cooking class was great as well!

Carlos M.

I think I know who the person is whose dog was yelled at, cause I heard the commotion and looked at my window and saw/heard the whole thing. They apparently do not like dogs and the men had this pack mentality that came over them, while picking on the woman & her dog. They were being outrageous. Keep in mind, women are second class citizens in the majority of islamic countries, plus this poor girl had her a dog with her. The dog wasn’t doing anything wrong, nor was she, from what I could see. Lady verbally defended herself. They picked on her cause she was a woman AND had a dog. Anonymous is right they don’t “approve” of dogs. The 108 Precinct should keep an eye on that “cultural center”.


The sidewalks in my neighborhood are filthy with dog urine and dog crap. If people would curb their dogs ( so the waste does NOT go on the sidewalks where we all walk, but by the curb, where no one walks and the street cleaners clean) I wouldn’t be surprised if there were less hostility to dog owners.

I walk on 43rd street btwn 48th & 50th a lot- dog owners let their dogs go everywhere and anywhere on that stretch- very unpleasant. Even a lady who lives across the street comes over to my side to let her dog go- can’t blame her. Some people think dog urine is disgusting, not just Turkish people. I’ll bet that wrought iron fence was put up because dog owners let their dogs go there as if it was their right, and probably many of them didn’t clean up afterwards. Just guessing.


Some of the men that were at this food exhibit were the same men who yelled at me for allowing my 10 lb. dog to pee on the wrought iron fence that surrounds the tree outside of the mosque. My friend who is an Egyptian muslim explained to me that most muslims (not her as she too has a dog) look at dogs as filthy animals, and should not be owned by humans & living in our homes with us. I would never join this event. Most of them are really not looking to break bread and assimilate into American culture. If they don’t like dogs, I got news for them: You’re in the wrong country, the wrong city and the wrong neighborhood!


I like freedom of speech- I would fight for that right. Lots good Turkish people, here & there!


Every year it’s the same thing, and every year I write the same thing: the Turkish Cultural Center is funded 100% by the Gülen Movement, whose agenda it is to muddy the two sides between churches/mosques/synagogues and the state/government here and abroad. The riots that transpired throughout Turkey protesting for freedom of speech two months back resulted in 9000+ people wounded and 4000+ arrested. Now guess which side these people are on?


Anonymous @ 9:33 PM: Queens seems like a weird place to live for someone so afraid of non-Christians. You should probably leave as soon as possible; we don’t want you either.


Great work TCC. You guys are maintaining an example institution in Sunnyside queens. Thanks for everything, best regards 🙂


Great work TCC queens. I’m always proud to see you guys working hard and being an example institution in Sunnyside, queens. Thank you


I try to ignore all religions equally. None of them make a lot of sense to me, and I’ve been around churches and religious people most of my life. I don’t think religion belongs in schools, or in the park. But I understand the difference in these two situations and didn’t see why anyone should get so aggravated over this.



I agree with everything you just wrote about tolerance and tradition and that. It’s in that same spirit I see absolutely no reason why those Christian congregations are denied a space that they not only pay rent to use but hold their event behind closed doors so that only people who are part of it need be exposed to their religious proceedings, unlike this public Ramadan gathering.

It is precisely for the virtues you cite, not to mention fairness and equality that they should be allowed to rent these spaces. (And I still don’t know if this Turkish center is paying to use the park or not, which would be another double standard in itself).

As far as making non-Christians feel more welcome, you won’t accomplish that by discriminating against Christians out of some sort of historical payback, or by playing favorites with newer religious groups to this country.

If you truly believe in tolerance and equality, practice it – across the board – for everybody. Otherwise, it’s nothing to do with tolerance or equality, except maybe in the Orwellian sense of some being more “equal” than others.

Oldschool Sunnysider

The main issue with the use of schools is the security and labor required.
There has to be (at least) a custodian and a security guard present for these events, which are usually held in the evenings and on the weekends which costs quite a bit of money.


You’re right, it is religious, but the Eid feast they celebrated in the park didn’t involve religious services or prayers, did it? I’m not in any way an expert on Islam but I know they’ve been doing this for years and I’ve never heard that it was offensive to anyone in a religious way. Again, sort of like Christmas is both religious and non-religious.

I’m more interested in religious tolerance, and I know that some Muslims are really trying to overcome some misconceptions that so many have to their faith because of politics and religious fundamentalism, so maybe I’m “grasping at straws.”

I’m glad to live in a multi-cultural community where there is more than one faith, and everyone seems to co-exist without any friction. Sometimes I think that the Christian community, the dominant community, has to also “really try” to make newer, non-Christian poulations feel welcome.

That tent is kind of a tradition- I’ve seen it there for a few years now, and I’m glad that it’s become part of our community. Where my Mom or my brothers live, this observation would not be tolerated but met with real hostility. Sorry if I tried too hard to make a point.

Oil, Beef, Hooked


Re-read the first paragraph.

“The Turkish Cultural Center set up a large tent in L/Cpl Thomas P. Noonan Park for four nights last week to celebrate the end of the Islamic holiday Ramadan.”


You wrote: “Ramadan is a religious holiday but this feast is only done when it’s over, and it seems to be non-religious.”

Huh??? You’re really grasping at straws there. I’m sure Muslims celebrating at this event would have been very surprised to hear that it was a non-religious event.


86Mets, your two posts do seem a little aggressive, almost angry, but maybe I’m misinterpreting your tone.

You’re right, discrimination is wrong, as you’ve been told. I’m not sure if this use of the park is equal to the situation where religious groups were having church services in schools on the weekend. Churches can hold events on public property- some of the street fairs on 46th St. are spondered by that church.

This is not politically correct hypocrisy, I think, because it’s a feast to celebrate the end of a holiday period. Granted, Ramadan is a religious holiday but this feast is only done when it’s over, and it seems to be non-religious. I mean, we string lights and put up Christmas trees; most of the city shuts down for Christmas. It is a religious holiday, but also a non-religious holiday, I guess, if you just want to celebrate the Santa part.

Btw, I probably know a dozen Turkish people (from where I work in Manhattan, not from around here) and they’re all Muslim.


86Mets, I don’t see any islamic writings, prayers, praises to lords of any kind, people trying to recruit anyone by passing books, crosses, or whatever else they have, it’s just food and community gathering. It is NOT a religious even as far as we can see.

Not all Turks I know are Muslim, by the way.

Suggestion for 86Mets

86 Mets: have you tried sending an email to the Councilman’s office? If you wrote one stating your question, leaving off the sarcasm, but including your concern that one group is being permitted to use city property but not another, I am sure you will get a reply. Replying here would be meaningless because anyone can fill in anyone’s name in the comments.


Let me add something to my previous remark.

For the record, I think this Ramadan event in the park is perfectly fine. The TCC have proven themselves good neighbors and I wish them well during their religious holy days. What I vehemently object to is the politically correct hypocrisy that allows one religious group to use city property but not another.

I believe that’s called discrimination and I’ve been told all my life that that’s a bad thing. Apparently not.

Can anyone from the councilman’s office tell us how much the TCC is paying for the use of the park?


Hypocrisy and double standards in action folks:

Christian groups who were renting auditoriums in city schools on the weekends were kicked out because it was decided that religious groups could not hold their events on public city property. (Separation of church and state etc)

Yet here we have a city park being used for a religious event but this one is ok?

I know the answer to this but I’d be curious to see who else does, including our esteemed council member.


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