Turkey’s Deception

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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s self-righteous proclamations in defense of the Palestinian Islamist terrorist group Hamas — (i.e. “Hamas is not a terrorist group,” “Hamas are resistance fighters who are struggling to defend their land, and they have won an election,” etc.) — are glaringly hypocritical and in accord with his Islamist ideological bent. Erdogan has become sufficiently confident in the wake of his July 2007 electoral victory. His Justice and Development party, known as AKP, received 47% of the vote, enabling him to form a single-party government, and he has since sought to forge an Islamic agenda for Turkey.  His actions reveal his intent to lead the Arab and Muslim East while gambling that the Obama administration and the European Union will ignore his Islamist rhetoric and his increasingly radical actions.  Aside from becoming a champion of Hamas, he is charting a course towards a revival of Ottoman hegemony by restoring the seat and center of the Caliphate.

The United Arab Emirate-based online news source, The National, reported on June 15, 2010, that “Turkey embarked on the road to a ‘Middle East Union’ as an alternative to the European Union.”  The National quoted from a front page article that appeared in the Turkish daily Milliyet regarding the signing of a free-trade agreement between Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, and Jordan.

A speech given by President Obama before the Turkish parliament in April 2009, during which Obama declared, “Let me say this as clearly as I can: the United States is not and will never be at war with Islam,” encouraged Erdogan to ramp up his efforts. Erdogan, no doubt, is also counting on the European lack of moral courage.  As such, he was able to provoke a crisis with Israel by funding and indirectly arming the flotilla that sought to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza, and essentially call for jihad against Israel. Neither Obama nor the Europeans have rebuked him for his repeated egregious behavior.  Moreover, Erdogan has derived a backwind from the vacuum created by the perception of weakness of the Obama administration, coupled with Obama’s toughness against Israel – the only democratic ally in the region – rather than towards Iran.

While Hamas has been pitied and cuddled by Obama, the Europeans, the UN, and human rights organizations, there has been no condemnation of the Turkish regime (nor, for that matter, against the Islamic Republic of Iran) by the US and the West for the continued war on the Kurdish people in Turkey, Iran, and Iraqi Kurdistan.  According to a CNN-TV December 19, 2007 report, “the US helped in attack on PKK.”  The ostensible reason for the war against the Kurdish people is the Kurdistan Workers Party’s (PKK) terrorism. Neither the Western powers nor the UN ever took Turkey to task over the lives of thousands of innocent Kurds killed in the process.  And while the PKK might have used guerilla warfare against the Turkish authorities, unlike Hamas, it rarely employed suicide bombers or attacked civilians.  The double-standard is apparent, Saudi petro-dollars helped to smooth the Arab-Palestinian image while overlooking its jihadist nature.  At the same time, the friendless Kurds have no petro-dollar patrons to count on.

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  • Mark

    This is a rat cunning article ,

    what about the games America and Israel play in the middle east, Cant wait for Turkey to expel the American base in Turkey.,. Then you just wait and watch what happens NEXT!!!!!

    • aspacia

      Could you be specific regarding the US and Israeli games? You provide no support. Sure, both protect their interests, but so what?

      • Uma

        Turkey protects its interests to, so what ?
        And btw, "America" is a continent, not a country.
        Long live Erdogan!

  • Jack

    This article is full of lies! Such as the claim that Erdogan funded the flotilla… The fact is, he did not! Just as other European countries from which ships joined the flotilla (Ireland, UK, Greece, etc.) cannot – if they are democracies – prevent the ships from sailing to Gaza, Erdogan did not, either!! As would be appropriate for a democratic country… despite the begging of Israel.

    What makes Turkey different from other countries is that Turkey's citizens were killed and massacred by Israel, which is piracy in the least, and perhaps terrorism, as Erdogan nicely put it. As would every state whose citizens are murdered, Turkey had a strong stance, and that is more than normal.

    Plus, it was not just Turkey, it was the whole world that condemned Israel after the incident, which occurred ON INTERNATIONAL WATERS…

    It was only the USA which did not condemn the issue. Just serves to show that the US only serves Israel's interests, and decreases US' credibility further in world affairs!

    • aspacia

      Endrogen gave the flotilla a thumbs up. He wanted an incident to promote himself, and embaress Israel.

      The activists reaped what they sowed. They started the violence, attacked the commandos.

      This was all staged.

      Besides, you have no concept regarding the law:

      “San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflict at Sea”, adopted in 1994, which you can read at the International Committee for the Red Cross website. I am quoting this as presented by JKB in the linked thread at The VC:

      118. In exercising their legal rights in an international armed conflict at sea, belligerent warships and military aircraft have a right to visit and search merchant vessels outside neutral waters where there are reasonable grounds for suspecting that they are subject to capture.

      146. Neutral merchant vessels are subject to capture outside neutral waters if they are engaged in any of the activities referred to in paragraph 67 or if it is determined as a result of visit and search or by other means, that they:

      (f) are breaching or attempting to breach a blockade.

      Capture of a neutral merchant vessel is exercised by taking such vessel as prize for adjudication.

      98. Merchant vessels believed on reasonable grounds to be breaching a blockade may be captured. Merchant vessels which, after prior warning, clearly resist capture may be attacked.

      103. If the civilian population of the blockaded territory is inadequately provided with food and other objects essential for its survival, the blockading party must provide for free passage of such foodstuffs and other essential supplies, subject to:

      (a) the right to prescribe the technical arrangements, including search, under which such passage is permitted; and

      The emphasis in that quote is as it appeared originally. I would have also emphasized “Merchant vessels which, after prior warning, clearly resist capture may be attacked,” that being one of the key elements in dispute.

      This incident was an operational and PR debacle for Israel, playing directly into the “peace activists” hands, but put a fork in the argument that Israel’s acts were illegal – that argument is done. The ICRC’s own “law of war” document makes it clear that Israel was well within her rights.

    • MixMike

      "What makes Turkey different from other countries is that Turkey's citizens were killed and massacred by Israel, which is piracy in the least, and perhaps terrorism, as Erdogan nicely put it."

      Turkey's citizens were part of the IHH which is a terrorist organization! They attacked the Israel's first. The Israelis acted in self-defense which is in no way even comparable to piracy or terorism.

      "Plus, it was not just Turkey, it was the whole world that condemned Israel after the incident, which occurred ON INTERNATIONAL WATERS…"

      Being on international waters is meaningless. Israel acted with authority under international law to board the ships and prevent the flotilla from breaking its legal blockade.

  • Asma

    what a convoluted article based on purely revenge for the prime minister of a country which has lost its citizens in the unfortunate Flotilla incidence. High light an alternate issue to reign in Erdogan of Turkey.

  • aspacia

    He instigated the incident.

    • Constance Leone


      An angry mob of civilians (i.e. as opposed to an unit of trained commandos) needed to be pacified by riot police. Israel has just demonstrated it will use unilateral and disproportionate force at every opportunity. If Israel decides to shoot down 9 citizens of it's only democratic ally (Turkey) in the region that is a PR suicide. EVEN if you can convince yourself Erdogan instigated the incident, you should not try to justify civilians deaths at the hands of the world's most lethal commandos. Your 'eye-for-an-eye' mentality would make the Wahhabis shudder.

      • New Yorker

        Nonsense. The ones who died were the thugs who used DEADLY weapons to ambush and attack a lawful boarding team. The thugs lose their "innocent civilian" (what is it anyway?) status the moment they engage in such an attack.

        • Constance Leone

          A country cannot be so paranoid that it has to send it's army to arrest a boat full of activists. Very reminiscent of Middle Eastern police violence where the army opens fire on peaceful and innocent activists. In the Middle East, whenever there is a group expressing an opinion contrary to the state propaganda, the army beats them with clubs, sprays them with mace, uses live ammo to disperse the crowds and so on. Israel claims it is BETTER than that – and it just proved to the world how far away from the Western cultures it is. Israel is not a Western country and it does not deserve the support of any Western nation, US included. It is essentially a Middle Eastern military dictatorship no different than Egypt or Iran.

          Not to mention, the capture happened in international waters – what is the Israeli navy doing patrolling outside it's scope?

          • MixMike

            "A country cannot be so paranoid that it has to send it's army to arrest a boat full of activists."

            Yes it can when "activist boats" in the past have carried huge caches of weapons. Just look at the Karine A! Besides, they still haven't found any humanitarian aid on the Mavi Marmara, just banned items (cement) and stacks of cash for Hamas.

            "Not to mention, the capture happened in international waters – what is the Israeli navy doing patrolling outside it's scope?"

            Don't cite international law when you don't know what you're talking about, All nations can assert jurisdiction in International waters. Especially when the flotillas tried to illegally break Israel's legal blockade of Gaza.

        • Asma

          Deadly weapons? Can you specify.

          • MixMike

            Stun grenades, bats, military knives, crowbars, and automatic weapons stolen from Israeli soldiers.

          • Uma

            The ones that IsraHeli militants had.

    • Uma

      Aspacia do you have proves that he "instigated the incident" ? What we know is that IsraHell assaulted the ship. Thats what instigated the incident.

  • aspacia

    Watson, the games afoot.

  • Constance Leone

    This article is comparing apples and oranges. The difference between Turkey and Israel is:

    When PKK stages an attack and breaks it's self declared ceasefires, Turkish military conducts bombardments on bases (visible with Israeli made drones and US provided intel) just across its border where there is a power vacuum This is a territory the US has not been patrolling for whatever reason, since the 2003 invasion. PKK bases targeting Turkey must be eradicated, and this is self defense.

    When Hamas fires rockets (which itself cannot be condoned) into Israel, the hawks in the Israel decide to obliterate entire towns and villages. Turkey has so far never managed to kill 1400 indiscriminately in one shot. Turkey has never concentrated 1.2 million Kurds in a tight camp in dire conditions. The way the Israeli army has decisive power in Israeli politics makes Israel look like just another Middle Eastern dictatorship. Israel has a right to self defense, it just does not have the right treat 1.2 civilians as war subjects.

    • New Yorker


    • MixMike

      "When Hamas fires rockets (which itself cannot be condoned) into Israel, the hawks in the Israel decide to obliterate entire towns and villages."

      Nonsense, towns and villages are still standing just fine. There is not one example of Israel even coming close to destroying an entire town, let alone an entire neighborhood or street block. Israel has VERY selectively demolished ONLY those buildings used by terrorists as hideouts, bomb and weapon factories, weapons smuggling sites and sniper and ambush sites.

      "Turkey has so far never managed to kill 1400 indiscriminately in one shot."

      No, they only committed the Armenian Genocide. Even still, during Operation Cast Lead, approximately 1,100 Palestinians were killed, over 700 were identified as Hamas terror operatives, and only about 290 were identified as Palestinian civilians. The remaining still have not yet been classified. Perhaps the civilian death toll could have been lowered if Hamas did not "bravely" use women and children as human shields.

  • http://www.apnideals.com John

    What a pathetic article. Turkey is doing what any other country would have done under this situation. Wake up America before you go down with Israel. Enough of BS already.

    • New Yorker

      Erdogan is taking his country down. It may not be apparent at the moment but the price paid by the turks and Turkey as a country – a collective price – will be huge. I have a premonition that Erdogan and his entourage will be hanged by the balls by his own people in the same kind of justice afforded to Benito Mussolini.

      • Constance Leone

        This comment itself shows the ignorance of the opinionated. More likely, Erdogan will be voted out of the office at the next election, as usually it is the case in a democracy. Even if he doesn't, hey, it will be because the country wants to keep him in power. (The US DID vote for W. Bush twice)

      • Asma

        Your imagination runs away with you

        • Asma

          the above comment is for New Yorker

  • Abraham

    To the writer of this nice article: great job. Turkish hypocrisy should be exposed for all to see. USA and other nations should be ashamed of themselves for supporting the Turkish terror state in oppressing the Kurds and denying the Armenian genocide and the occupation of Northern Cyprus! USA, change your policy because you are way better than this! The US has betrayed the Kurds many times in the past, but the Kurds stayed loyal to the USA. That's what I call a REAL friend.

    • Uma

      Turkish hypocrisy ? Can you elaborate ? What hypocrisy ? They're defending their national interests. What country are you loyal for, USA or Israhell ?

  • Carleton

    There is a lot that Americans do not know about Turkey and Erdogan because the mass media has rolled over for Turkey and not done its job.

    Andrew Bostom knows the real Erdogan and wrote "Erdogan has a Judeophobic and Nazi-Like Background" here: http://ziontruth.blogspot.com/2010/06/erdogan-has

    Rachel Sharon-Krespin has done a terrific expose on what is happening in Turkey: http://www.meforum.org/2045/fethullah-gulens-gran

    Look at Erdogan and Gul in the audience at this religious rally: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhfnHKgF-yw

    Why did the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington decide to give an award to, of all people, Turkey's foreign minister Davutoglu? http://www.countercurrents.org/boyajian060510.htm

    New York Congressman Gary Ackerman wrote a very critical letter to the Wilson Center: http://ackerman.house.gov/index.cfm?sectionid=186

    • Uma

      Zionist propaganda, hasbara. What country are you loyal for, USA or IsraHell ?