In Turkey, they are still busy and dedicating space and time in the media for Elon Musk ‘s humorous tweet about Istanbul, seeing behind it even conspiracy scenarios.
It all started when Elon Musk posted on his personal Twitter account a photo with the figure of the “stickman”, who is depicted as a Byzantine soldier with his helmet, while he falls asleep trying to remember if he locked his gate Kirkou (Kerkoporta).
This is the gate from where the Ottomans entered and occupied Constantinople in 1453.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 17, 2022
Musk’s post, which recently “froze” the Twitter takeover deal, sparked a storm of reactions among Turkish users of the popular social platform, who took it as provocative and offensive.
In the comments below the post in question, there were also insults and threats from Turkish users, who probably did not realise that the CEO of Tesla and Space X, is a man with a sense of humour and is used to commenting – on social networks. – situations and current affairs in his own special way.
What obviously bothered the Turks was the reference of Musk to “Constantinople” and the report that Kerkoporta was “open” and that the city was not conquered with force.
With 98.6 million followers, the South African businessman’s controversial post turned into a Turkish-Greek “conflict”, with the Turks becoming angered and the Greeks applauding Musk, especially for his reference to Constantinople.
In Greece, in fact, the term Constantinople has been in the trend for a long time.
In Turkey, newspapers, news bulletins and newscasts continue to devote space and time to Musk’s controversial post, analysing what Mr Tesla hinted by the “Fall” not being the result of a military operation, but an open gate forgotten unlocked by Byzantine soldiers.
Historian İlber Ortaylı spoke to Hürriyet about the “open gate theory”, claiming that the first to formulate it was the Austrian writer and journalist Stefan Zweig (1881-1942).
“The open gate theory was written by Zweig, who he knew European history well, but not much Turkish history,” said Ortaylı, a historian and professor of history at MEF and Galatasaray Universities in Istanbul, as well as Bilkent University in Ankara.
“Istanbul was conquered after enormous military preparations. It was not easy,” Ortaylı said. “Musk may be referring to Zweig’s theory, but he probably does not know the details.”
Hürriyet’s article comments that: “Many users of social media noticed the timing of the tweet, ie the peak of tension between Turkey and Greece.”
Some believed that Musk underestimated the Fall of Constantinople, some that he warned Greece “to keep the gates closed against the Turks.”
Other Turkish historians have taken a stand on the controversial post and the theory of the “open gate.” He clarified that the open Kerkoporta is a “rumour that has nothing to do with reality”
“It was spread to recover from the shock of the conquest and to underestimate the fall of the city to the Turks,” he told the Sabah newspaper.
On the same wavelength was another historian, specialising in the Byzantine era, who defended the Fall of the City by Mehmet the Conqueror, saying: “Some keep this myth alive to underestimate the conquest.”