Category Archives: Turkey

The riots in Turkey

It would be very easy to take the anti-Erdogan stance over the “riots” in Turkey, but I find when it comes to the Middle East, it is always better to try and get further information before taking a stance. This is why, for example I have not fully supported the opposition in Syria, despite the fact that I took the side of the Libyan opposition (my decision on Libya was based entirely upon what I had discovered about Gadhafi and the way he treated his own countrymen and countrywomen). One of the lessons about Libya is that Gadhafi had set up the country as a Socialist State. The people wanted it returned to be an Islamic State, and that is their perogative!!

Another example for exercising caution over the protests and riots was Egypt. The opposition to Muburrak was a mixture of groups including communists or left-wingers, as well as Muslim Brotherhood plus the Salafists. The Muslim Brotherhood eventually gained the upper hand because there are more Shia in Egypt… it really is that simple. However, there remains a group of left-wingers who are totally secular in their wants and needs, and these people are in fact associated with Russia.

By way of a history lesson, it should be noted that the Ba’ath Party had been started in Egypt and the originators were in fact Communists. From the beginning the Ba’athists in the Middle East had ties with Russia. From this you should be able to see why it is that Russia has always been keen not to lose a sphere of influence, and Egypt, Libya and Syria are quite important to Russia.

Now back to Erdogan and Turkey. First of all, I happen to applaud Erdogan for the way in which he has been handling the crisis on his doorstep and I am not talking about the riots. Erdogan has shown a lot of restraint over the fact that the Syrian army has caused so many atrocities. It does not help, however, that the Free Syrian Army and its offshoots are associated with Al Qaeda. It seems to be that there is a mix of people involved, and some of them are simply unpalatable. Erdogan, however, has been providing shelter and feeding the Syrians who fled across the border.

When I first noticed the stories about these riots, I more or less put them to the back of my mind until I saw the Trevor Loudon article at New Zeal. BINGO. Here is the link between what happened in Egypt prior to the Muslim Brotherhood taking over the country and Turkey. That link happens to be the same kind of people who started the protests in Egypt i.e. the Leftwing or Communists of that country. Erdogan is not necessarily a friend to Russia. It makes sense that the Russians could once again be behind the stirring up of trouble.

At this stage it is unlikely that these people will succeed with their protests, but we do have to exercise caution and be ready to not support either side in any ensuing conflict in Turkey.

the death of OBL does not change the F grade given to Østupid for his foreign policy failures

Yes, it is true, I am a very harsh critic of the Østupid regime.  There are few amongst them that deserve any accolades. However, I will give special mention to Hillary Clinton, Leon Panetta, David Petreus and John Brennan for their persistence in going after OBL. They deserve the accolades for the death of OBL, not Østupid.

In the week since it was announced that OBL was dead, there has been so much spin coming out of the White House that it has been enough to make a person go dizzy. The stories have been changing daily, and there has been a lack of consistency about those stories. Even that story about waiting 16 hours before giving the final go ahead sounds like cow dung. It is a story that does not show decisiveness, but instead shows virtual cowardice when it comes to facing the realities of a war situation. It sounds like the truth lies somewhere between the Ulsterman report on the matter, and the cow dung fodder that came out of the press. I have a hard time imagining that the fey pResident could hammer his fist on a table to give the go ahead on something this important, and then head off to parties and playing golf, whilst it is all going down.

The fallout from the action is still very nuclear at the present time. The relationship between the USA and Pakistan is deteriorating rapidly. What is worse, the Pakistanis have released the name of the top CIA agent in Pakistan, which has put his life in danger. This is partly caused by the spin that has come from the White House, as well as the refusal to release the pictures of the body of OBL or of the video that showed him being fed to the sharks.

There should have been a very real psychological advantage in showing those photographs, but the image-obsessed pResident has told the world that he is “afraid” of any ensuing outrage. Well, the fact is the outrage is going to happen anyway, and why should the USA be concerned about the sensibilities of a bunch of very brain deficient individuals who go crazy over the slightest thing?

However, it is not just the handling of finding OBL that keeps that grade as an F, but it is the way in which he has handled other Middle East issues.  For example, when the Iranian regime crushed the protests of the people with bloodshed, Østupid said nothing until prompted by Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy. If it had not been for those two, Østupid would have totally ignored the human rights abuses in Iran. It was the death of Neda that made a difference, but the difference was short lived. The notion of extending a hand has been proved to be fruitless, and on the other hand it has shown to the Iranians that the USA has been weakened by having this man as pResident.

Then there is the attitude over the uprising in Egypt. The strategic concerns for the region were overridden out of some other underlying beliefs that Muslim Brotherhood be allowed to control Egypt… oh what a web we weave!!! Now it seems that the Salafists are on the loose in Egypt and the uprisings that are about to take off again are going to get extremely bloody unless the army is willing to stop the slaughter of the Copts. Muburak at least kept these Salafists (allied to AQ) under control. The demands that the pResident made to Muburak to step down were totally ill-considered.  Tunisia is also troubled, but it is a far more settle nation for the time being.

Since there have been several uprisings, and with brutal crackdowns by the regime in question, this leaves open further accusations of inconsistency in policy. As an example here, look at both Libya and Syria. I do see the differences in that Syria was slower to crack down on the population, and in Syria the situation is becoming more and more bloody. It has been the slow build-up. On the other hand, in Libya, Gadhafi planned his reaction in advance of any protests. At first Østupid made some noises, but only after Sarkozy and Cameron were insisting that action had to be taken. The UN no-fly zone enforcement is justified in Libya because Daffy Duck was bombing his own people, pretending that he was combating AQ elements. I have discussed at length that much of the claims about the involvement of AQ in Libya has been exaggerated, and is mostly coming from regime propaganda. This does not mean that some AQ associated individuals are not present, it just means that the vast majority are not associated with AQ, and that they are fighting for their lives against a wounded bull. That being said, the issue here is the manner in which Østupid stepped back, leaving a gap that had not been filled in the mission to take out Daffy’s means of killing Libyans. The attack on Misrata is outrageous and it needs to be stopped.  It needs strong leadership from the US and instead, the leadership has been totally wimpy. I commend both Sarkozy and Cameron, and I give a special mention to the Turk Erdogan for their efforts in attempting to protect the citizens of Misrata and Zintan.

To these concerns about Libya, I add here that the pResident had plenty of time to go to the Congress before the UN resolution, and to put to Congress the possible actions that would be required. The fact that he was spending his time on vacation, playing golf and giving parties, indicates that he is not serious in being a leader of the world. The fact is that without Congressional approval, the participation of the US in the Libyan action is not illegal, but certainly illicit. 

For these reasons… and counting…. an F grade on foreign policy and international relations is still very appropriate.

Turning point – for Turkey

Turkey was one of the countries that had for the most part remained neutral over Libya. The Turks did not vote for the no-fly zone action. At the same time Turkey took on the role of negotiator, which was crucial for the international people who had been arrested in Tripoli. It was due to the Turkish intervention that some Australian men who had been captured and put in prison were freed.  Turkey has also been helping with humanitarian aid, and Turkey has been at the forefront of helping to get aid ships into the port of Misrata.

Whilst doing all of these things, Turkey had not broken off relations with the Daffy Duck regime. The reason is that Turkey has some very valuable contracts  in Libya and Turkey did not want to lose those contracts. So it is with amazement that I saw this report relating to Turkey’s new attitude towards Daffy Duck. Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan is urging Daffy Duck to leave Libya.

In a speech, Mr Erdogan said Col Gaddafi had ignored calls for change in Libya and preferred “bloodshed” than listening to his people.

“One cannot establish future, liberty, stability, peace and justice on blood. Therefore we wish Libyan leader immediately pulls out from Libya and steps down for himself and for the future of the country,” he said.

He also said Turkey would do all it could to ensure the people of Libya take the lead in establishing a more democratic system, and would talk to the anti-Gaddafi National Transitional Council.

“The people of Libya should determine their future in solidarity and unity, it is a priority for us. Hence, we will stay in touch with National Transitional Council to ensure that the elements in our road map can be carried out.”

The BBC’s Jonathan Head says that, with this statement, Turkey is for the first time in accord with its allies over Libya.

With Turkey being active in the bringing of humanitarian aid to the suffering people of Misrata it is not beyond the realms of possibility that Erdogan has at last seen the light, and that he accepts that the bloodshed is the fault of Daffy Duck, who continues to bombard the people of Misrata.

Also, it looks like Turkey has joined Qatar and France in recognizing the National Transitional Council in Benghazi.