In response to yesterday's "Millennium Misstep?" post I received a lengthy email from an individual claiming to be a member of the Turkish tourney paintball scene. Independent of anything the person revealed I have confirmed the player's identity and relationship to paintball. That does not mean that VFTD endorses everything in the following email. I provide it as additional background information . There are claims that should be easy to refute if they are, in fact, untrue or incorrect. Otherwise I am satisfied they offer an alternative view of an important ands unfolding situation. As always don't hesitate to comment. In response to yesterday's post Houdini made an excellent observation: The U.S. military has sponsored events in the past. Is the Sarsilmaz situation all that different? (My paraphrase.)
In the interest of assuring the author's anonymity I removed five words and added three words in a single sentence that I was concerned might provide sufficient information to lead to the author's identity.
First of all, feel free to share this information with anyone as long as my name is not mentioned. I play paintball in Turkey and the views stated here are my own but I'm sure lots of problems would arise both for me and my team if it was known that it was me that said these things. What you will read is pretty much along the lines of what almost every paintball player here thinks but does not come out and say (at least not on a large scale).
There is no Turkish Paintball Federation. That is bullshit shoveled out by Millennium because they for obvious reasons don't want to put Turkish Hunting and Shooting Federation (THSF) on their site when announcing the final leg. The second 'disclaimer' statement by Millennium alleges that the Turkish Paintball Federation functions under the THSF and has to listen to their parent federation when making decisions. This is much more funny to us when we know that it is very far from the truth. Once again, there is no TPF and paintball is run by the THSF with just a technical committee including some players that gives them advice and makes decisions regarding the sport. So this whole image that is being portrayed of the poor little paintball federation having to succumb to the needs of the big bad all-controlling hunting and shooting federation is utter crap.
Unfortunately, there are many suck ups here in Turkey that are so happy that Millennium is being held in Turkey that they have started lobbying, trying to convince other players to go to these forums and convince people that its really not so bad. Not to mislead you, its great to have Millennium here and under different circumstances all of us would be delighted to get this chance. Yet some of us still feel the dilemma of being housed inside and controlled by a federation that represents pretty much everything that we have long as a community (both local and international) been fighting to clear paintball of. The prejudices of being a war game, the milsim markers mines and grenades, etc. are suddenly back in peoples' minds and it seems like paintball has been dealt a blow to regress it 10 years thanks to Millennium not being able to say 'no' when money is concerned.
After all, all it would take is Millennium standing firm that the Sarsilmaz association is a dealbreaker. You want to host the event? You can't call it Sarsilmaz. Its bad for paintball. That's all they needed to say. Instead they did what almost everyone has come to expect from them and obviously condemn. They filled their pockets, and looked the other way.
What isn't mentioned is that not only is Sarsilmaz a big supporter of the federation, the company also belongs to the president of the federation. So it is not just a company that is sponsoring the federation, in effect it IS the federation. When teams were going to international tournaments (Centurio Russia for example) they were given THSF attire with the Sarsilmaz name on them, and some players did not wear them at all, claiming to have forgotten them back home.
And another load of bullshit by Millennium: Sarsilmaz is not a sponsor of Millennium, and we have not received any assistance from the company. First of all, Sarsilmaz is not a sponsor? No shit! Obviously its not a sponsor, as if we don't know who sponsors the series. Secondly, Millennium might not have received any money directly from Sarsilmaz but we all know what kind of money is dished out by organizers to host the event and I can tell you that apart from the big federations like football, there are none that can generate that kind of money just to hand over for an event (as there are still lots of additional costs) without sponsors and outside support. So Sarsilmaz pays the federation, and they pay Millennium and technically Millennium is not getting any money from Sarsilmaz. Technically.
Anyway, just wanted to give you a bit of the local side of the story.