Turkish military song: let's kill all the Kurds as we killed the Armenians
In this video filmed by soldiers of the Turkish army in the occupied
town of Silopi Kurdish in Turkey, this group of soldiers called JOH
and POH, are the Turkish death squads that killed hundreds of
civilians while operating in Kurdish cities under curfew. A rough
translation of what they sing is "Everything, every time, everywhere
always the Turks on land and in the sky That we Turks -... We will
never allow the Kurds to survive Silopi We will fight until at the end
..... we swear every place will remain a Turkish land.the ISIS
(Islamic State) did is nothing compared to what we will do, we will
kill all Kurds as we have slaughtered all the Armenians. Amen. "
Sunday, January 24, 2016,
Stéphane © armenews.com
Erdogan Orders Schools to Teach Muslim Discovery of Americas ?
Posted 25 January 2016 - 10:36 AM
Posted 25 January 2016 - 10:42 AM
Jan 24 2016
Turkey: Christian Refugees Live in Fear
by Uzay Bulut
January 24, 2016 at 5:00 am
In the eyes of many devout Muslims, tolerance seems to be a one-way street.
"The relation between Islam and the rest of the world is marked by
asymmetry. Muslims may and do enjoy all kinds of freedoms and
privileges in the lands of the Kuffar [infidels]; however non-Muslims
are not granted the same rights and privileges when they live in
countries governed by Muslim governments... In our globalized world,
this state of affairs should not continue." ' Jacob Thomas.
The West, coming as it does from the Judeo-Christian culture of love
and compassion, would seem to have a moral responsibility to help
first the Christians, the most beleaguered and most benign of
Around 45,000 Armenian and Assyrian Christians (also known as Syriac
and Chaldean) who fled Syria and Iraq and have settled in small
Anatolian cities in Turkey, are forced to hide their religious
identity, according to the Hurriyet daily newspaper.
Since the Islamic State (ISIS) invaded Iraqi and Syrian cities,
Christians and Yazidis have become the group's main target, facing
another possible genocide at the hands of Muslims.
Anonis Alis Salciyan, an Armenian who fled Iraq for Turkey, told
Hurriyet that in public, they pretend to be Muslim.
"My husband and I fled [Iraq] with our two children one year ago with
around 20 other families. There was pressure on us in Iraq," Salciyan
said, recalling that her husband, who ran a jewelry shop in Iraq, is
now unemployed. "We have relatives in Europe. Only thanks to their
support are we getting by. Our children cannot go to school here; they
cannot speak Turkish."
What makes the plight of Christian refugees in Turkey even more tragic
is that the ancestors of some of those refugees were driven out of
Anatolia by the Ottoman authorities and local Muslims a century ago,
during what are known as the Armenian Genocide and Assyrian Genocide
Another family, Linda and Vahan Markaryan, also fled to Turkey with
their two children. Their home in Baghdad had been raided by ISIS
"My daughter, NuÅ?ik, seven, stopped talking that day. She has not
spoken since. We are working hard to provide her treatment, but she
still will not speak," Linda Markaryan said, adding that it was hard
for them to practice their religion. "We have to conduct our prayers
Islamic jihadist armies invaded Middle Eastern and North African lands
starting in the 7th century. The indigenous, non-Muslim, peoples of
those lands have doubtless forgotten what safety, security and
religious freedom mean.
In every country that is now majority-Muslim, there are horror stories
of violent subjugation, rapes, slavery and murder of the non-Muslim
people at the hands of jihadists.
Christians have existed in Syria since the earliest days of
Christianity; today, after the raids of ISIS, they are fleeing for
Muslim invasions of Byzantine Syria occurred under Muhammad's
successors, the Caliphs Abu Bakr and Umar ibn Khattab in the 7th
century. In 634, Damascus, then mostly Christian, became the first
major city of the Byzantine Empire to fall to the Rashidun Caliphate.
Damascus subsequently became the capital of the Ummayad Caliphate, the
second of the four major Islamic caliphates, and Arabic became the
official state language.
In Iraq, where many Christian refugees in Turkey also come from, there
has also been a campaign of Islamization.
Muslim Arabs captured what is today termed "Iraq" from the Persian
Sassanid Empire in 636. They burned Zoroastrian scriptures, executed
priests, pillaged cities and seized slaves -- just as ISIS does today.
When Muslim armies captured non-Muslim lands, the Christians and Jews
were given the choice of either converting, being killed, or living as
"dhimmis": third-class, barely "tolerated" people in their
dispossessed land, and having to pay a tax (the jizya) in exchange for
Now, in the 21st century, Christians in Turkey say they still live in fear.
On December 28, 2012, for instance, 85-year-old Maritsa Kucuk, an
Armenian woman, was beaten and stabbed to death in her home in the
neighborhood of Samatya (one of the largest Armenian communities in
Istanbul), where she lived alone. Her son, Zadig Kucuk, who found her
dead body at home, said that a cross had been carved on her chest.
In December 2012, also in Samatya, another woman, T.A., 87, was
attacked, beaten, and choked in her home. She lost an eye.
"The press, the police, politicians, and authorities have not focused
on this issue," wrote Rober Koptas, the then chief editor of the
Armenian bilingual weekly newspaper, Agos. "They prefer to stay silent
as if these attacks never took place. It increases the uneasiness of
all Armenians living in Turkey."
In January, 2013, Ilker Sahin, 40, a teacher working at an Armenian
school in Istanbul, was beheaded in his home.
In 2011, a Turkish taxi driver in Istanbul punched an Armenian
customer. "Your accent is bad," he told her. "You are a kafir
In the eyes of many devout Muslims, tolerance seems to be a one-way
street. Many Muslims have apparently still not learned to treat other
people with respect. Non-Muslims all around the "Muslim world" are
either murdered or forced to live in fear. Many Muslims evidently
still think that non-Muslims are their dhimmis, and that they can
treat them as terribly as they would like.
In Western countries, Muslims are equal citizens with equal rights.
But some of them often demand more "rights" -- privileges from their
governments -- such as Islamic sharia courts with a parallel legal
system. If their demands are not met, they accuse people of
"Islamophobia" or "racism."
In majority-Muslim countries, including Turkey, non-Muslims are
continually insulted, threatened or even murdered -- and most Muslims,
including state authorities, do not seem to care.
"The relation between Islam and the rest of the world is marked by
asymmetry," wrote the author Jacob Thomas,
"Muslims may and do enjoy all kinds of freedoms and privileges in the
lands of the Kuffar [infidels]; however non-Muslims are not granted
the same rights and privileges when they live in Daru'l Islam ["the
home of Islam", countries governed by Muslim governments]. Western
politicians don't seem to notice this anomaly; while most Western
academicians don't appear concerned about this lack of quid pro quo in
the Islamic world. In our globalized world, this state of affairs
should not continue."
Unfortunately, hatred of Christians has become a norm in Muslim
countries, and this norm will not soon go away. This means that
Christians in the Middle East will continue suffering or even being
murdered, and will eventually become extinct in the Middle East if the
civilized world does not help them.
As Linda Markaryan, the Christian refugee who fled ISIS in Iraq and is
now living in Turkey, said: "We do not have a future here. Everything
in our lives is uncertain. Our only wish is to provide a better future
for our children in a place where they are safe and secure."
"We are only working in temporary jobs in places like construction
sites," her husband, Vahan Markaryan, said. "The other workers
[Turkish citizens] are paid around 100 Turkish liras a day but we are
only paid 25 liras a day for the same work. We cannot demand our
Hurriyet also reported that Christian refugees in Turkey have applied
to the United Nations to be able to go to the U.S., Canada or Austria;
they have been granted residency in Turkey only until 2023.
All Western states should give priority to Christians from Muslim
countries when granting refugee status to people. The West, coming as
it does from the Judeo-Christian culture of love and compassion, would
seem to have a moral responsibility to help first the Christians,
these most beleaguered and most benign of immigrants.
Uzay Bulut, born and raised a Muslim, is a Turkish journalist based in Ankara.
 For more about dhimmitude, please see "The Dhimmi: Jews and
Christians Under Islam", by Bat Ye'or, Fairleigh Dickinson University
Posted 29 January 2016 - 10:58 AM
Furks understands only the language of force!
New York Times
January 27, 2016 Wednesday
Undoing progress in Turkey
by ABDULLAH DEMIRBAS
The country's war on the Kurds is destroying culture and heritage, and
sabotaging a newly revived pluralism.
Entire towns and districts are under siege. Tanks ram through narrow
alleys closed off by barricades and trenches. Residents are trapped
indoors for weeks because of curfews. Those who venture outside risk
sniper fire. Their bodies lie on the streets for days before they can
be collected. Bullets fly in through windows and buildings collapse
under shelling, killing those seeking shelter at home.
This is not Syria. This is Turkey, the European Union candidate
country once hailed as a champion of the Arab Spring. The conflict
that restarted here after the breakdown of talks between the Turkish
state and the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or P.K.K., last summer has
turned into a devastating war in Kurdish towns and cities.
One of the most affected places is the city of Diyarbakir's historic
Sur district, where I was mayor from 2004 to 2014. Sur has been under
24-hour curfew since the beginning of December. Many of its
neighborhoods lie in ruins. Its historic buildings are damaged, once
busy shops are shut, hospitals lack staff and schools are closed. Tens
of thousands of people have fled.
Sur's walls surround an ancient city that has been inhabited for
millenniums. Its narrow streets, spacious courtyards and elegant stone
structures are reminders of a rich multicultural legacy - a legacy
that has survived, albeit in an impoverished state, a century of
conflict. Small but increasingly visible communities of Armenians,
Assyrians, Chaldeans, Yazidis and other minorities live alongside
adherents of diverse interpretations of Islam in what is now a
predominantly Sunni Kurdish town.
Over the past decade, our municipality worked hard to revive and
preserve this heritage. We oversaw the restoration of many historic
buildings, including mosques and churches. The reopening of the Surp
Giragos Armenian Church, which is now the largest Armenian church in
the Middle East, after nearly a century in ruins has encouraged
''hidden'' survivors in Turkey of the 1915 genocide to rediscover and
embrace their heritage. Efforts to restore the old synagogue in memory
of Sur's once vibrant Jewish community were underway before the
eruption of violence last summer.
In 2012, Sur's community leaders established an interfaith dialogue
group bringing together representatives of the region's different
religions, cultures and civil society groups. Known as the Council of
Forty, it has played a crucial role in keeping sectarian violence from
reaching our city. Thanks to its efforts, Sur came to symbolize the
vision of peaceful coexistence in a region plagued by intolerance.
It causes me immense grief to see that pluralism fall apart along with
Sur's buildings. Sectarianism is destroying Syria before our very
eyes. To avoid the same fate in Turkey, the Council of Forty has
called on the government to lift the curfews, and asked all sides to
end hostilities and return to peace talks within the framework of
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said recently that military operations
in the besieged Kurdish towns would continue until they were
''cleansed'' of ''terrorists.'' ''You will be annihilated in those
houses, those buildings, those ditches which you have dug,'' he
threatened. But what peace can be built through destruction? Decades
of military policies against the Kurds have shown only that violence
begets more violence.
Many residents of these towns are poor families who were forced to
flee the countryside when the conflict between the Kurds and the
Turkish state was at its peak in the 1990s. Those who are digging
trenches and declaring ''self-rule'' in Sur and other cities and towns
of southeastern Turkey today are mostly Kurdish youths in their teens
and 20s who were born into that earlier era of violence, poverty and
displacement, and grew up in radicalized ghettos.
Now a new generation will grow up with the trauma of killing,
destruction and forced migration. Where will they go? What will become
of them? And how will an angrier generation of Kurds and Turks find
common ground? The truth is that my generation may be the last to
reach a peaceful settlement through dialogue.
Dialogue is possible when those in power want it. Last spring, the two
sides were on the verge of a breakthrough after two and a half years
of negotiations. The Kurds, when given a real and fair choice, have
repeatedly picked politics over violence and opted for coexistence in
a democratic Turkey, where their rights and identities are recognized,
over separation. But as the destruction goes on, their faith in a
political solution withers.
In 2007, Sur became the first municipality in Turkey to offer services
in local languages, including Kurdish, Armenian and Assyrian, besides
the official Turkish - a move that infuriated the authorities in
Ankara and led to my removal as mayor. In 2009, months after being
re-elected with two-thirds of the vote, I was arrested on charges of
separatism. (I was released five months later on health grounds and
kept my role as mayor throughout my arrest.)
As I was rounded up along with hundreds of Kurdish activists and
elected politicians, my teenage son left our house to join the P.K.K.
''You are wasting time with your politics and dialogue,'' he told me.
I dedicated my life to trying to prove him wrong and bring him home in
peace. I have been discouraged before, but never lost hope. Today, I
struggle to keep that hope alive.
Posted 01 February 2016 - 12:19 PM
Today's Zaman, Turkey
Jan 31 2016
Abant's message to Turkey
January 31, 2016, Sunday/ 16:39:42/ GÃ`NAL KURÅ?UN
I attended the 34th Abant Platform meeting in Bolu over the weekend.
In general, Abant Platform forums are the most inspirational events,
and this was no exception. The topic this time was `Democracy's
challenge with Turkey,' and intellectuals gathered to debate the level
of democracy in the country. The rising authoritarianism of the
Justice and Development Party (AKP) government and its ongoing
conflict with the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in southeastern
Anatolia were two critical points underlined by almost every speaker.
I sincerely thank the Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV) for its
excellent organization, which gave us a chance to listen to the most
outspoken speakers in the country. I had the opportunity to take the
floor for a few minutes and mention my ideas to improve Turkey's
democratization process. I think there are two main benchmarks before
Turkey to be overcome. The first is a confrontation with the past. In
my opinion, it will not be possible to raise our level of democracy if
we do not confront the issue of the 1915 Armenian genocide. I call it
a genocide, but the name is not important here and whether we call it
a genocide, a massacre or Meds Yeghern is not the biggest part of the
problem. The main point is to confront what we, as a nation, did in
In addition, what is also needed in the extreme are confrontations of
the following: the government's 1938 Dersim massacre of Kurdish
Alevis, the 1942 Wealth Tax (VarlÄ±k Vergisi) on all non-Muslims, the
anti-Greek, Armenian and Jewish pogrom in Ä°stanbul on Sep. 6-7, 1955,
and the Sunni majority massacres of Alevis in Çorum (1980), MaraÅ?
(1978) and Sivas (1993). We can extend this list to the coups of 1960,
1971, 1980 and 1997. I think that by confronting the burning issues
surrounding all the minority groups, including the LGBT community,
Alevis and Kurds, as well as the majority groups in the country such
as Muslims, we will have raised the first pillar from which we can
improve democratic standards in Turkey.
My second idea is that we have to overcome routine abuses of the law,
which is being used as a tool of anti-democracy. For now, Turkey is
using the law as a tool to punish opposition figures and strengthen
authoritarianism. Electoral authoritarianism was another point
discussed during the Abant meeting. I sincerely think that two basic
steps may lead to the cessation of this loutish atmosphere. Acceding
to the Rome Statute establishing the International Criminal Court,
which can try the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity, war
crimes and the crime of aggression, can give a sufficient guarantee
that all the actions cited above will not happen again. An amendment
to Article 90 of the Turkish Constitution, which states that `if a
conflict occurs between international treaties Turkey has ratified,
international treaties are above the Constitution and have a direct
applicable basis,' may help to stop the abuse and misinterpretation of
the text. This will also help to stop the abuse of law from fortifying
the authoritarianism of the government.
The European Union's vision is still hanging on the wall. We've still
got 35 chapters to pass before we can say we have raised our
standards. I sincerely think that holding these standards in high
esteem and putting our energy into them would be beneficial for
stopping the ongoing `civil war' in Turkey. Both the AKP and the PKK
have to lay down their weapons and try to focus on a new peace
process. This is the only solution and was the peaceful message I took
from the Abant meeting.
Posted 02 February 2016 - 11:06 AM
1,300 hotels in Turkish resorts up for sale amid tourism woes
As many as 1,318 hotels have been put up for sale along the Aegean and
Mediterranean coasts after Russian sanctions along with security
concerns hit Turkey's tourism industry hard, todayszaman.com said.
The Mediterranean resort of Antalya has the highest number of tourism
facilities -- 410 -- that are listed for sale, followed by the
provinces of MuÄ?la, which has 349 for sale; Ä°zmir, 203; AydÄ±n, 162;
BalÄ±kesir, 139; Çanakkale, 35 and Denizli, which has 20 in total
The total sale price of the 410 hotels in Antalya amounts to TL 30
billion, while the remaining 908 have sale prices of a total of TL 8.8
Denizli Colossae Thermal Chairman Abdurrahman KaramanlÄ±oÄ?lu said a
number of hotels in resort towns were left on the brink of bankruptcy
after Russia imposed sanctions against Turkey after the latter downed
a Russian warplane in November last year.
`We talk the realities but officials put a brave face on the issue. We
have been heavily affected from the jet crisis. Especially the hotels
in Antalya; being closed for the last four months, most of those are
on the verge of bankruptcy,' KaramanlÄ±oÄ?lu said.
Nearly two months after Russia advised its citizens to cancel their
visits to Turkey, an Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)
militant blew up himself and 10 tourists; most of whom were German, in
central Ä°stanbul earlier this month, adding more turmoil to an already
Russians and Germans represented the two largest groups of
nationalities that visited Turkey in 2014. Turkey's tourism revenues
fell 8.3 percent to $31.46 billion in 2015.
Posted 06 February 2016 - 12:23 PM
This shows furkish hypocrisy.
Feb 4 2016
Turks' Unrequited Love for Palestinians
by Burak Bekdil
February 4, 2016 at 4:00 am
The flag the Turkish prime minister proudly witnessed while being
hoisted at the United Nations is an inspiration of the flag used by
the Arab Palestinian nationalists in the first half of the 20th
century, which was the flag of the 1916 Arab Revolt against Prime
Minister Davutoglu's beloved Ottoman Empire.
In his speech, Abbas did not forget to "convey our best wishes to our
beloved Armenian brothers in Palestine, in Armenia and in the entire
world," and invited Armenian President Serzh Sarghsyan "to visit
Palestine and we hope he will accept the invitation."
Although it came as no surprise, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet
Davutoglu, in his weekly parliamentary group speech last December,
spoke like a Palestinian politician, not a Turkish one:
"The most oppressed people of the 20th and 21st centuries is the
Palestinian people ... Our support will continue until Jerusalem
becomes the capital of independent Palestine ... No one should doubt
our devotion to the Palestinian cause ... We won't forget Palestine,
Gaza, Jerusalem, not even in our dreams ... We do politics for this
He then narrated an anecdote:
"We were in the front rows when three months ago the Palestinian flag
was hoisted at the United Nations. In November 2012, I was the only
representative, as [then] foreign minister, from the Islamic world
when Palestine was given non-member status at the United Nations
general assembly. I sat with [Palestinian leader] Mahmoud Abbas when
the Palestinian flag was hoisted recently and we hugged ... That's why
I felt honored on behalf of my nation to witness the hoisting of the
Palestinian flag at the United Nations. Inshallah [God willing] that
flag will one day be waved in Jerusalem ... Whatever is wrong for
Palestine is wrong for us too."
What generous Turkish affection for the Palestinian flag and leader!
But both history and present times would forcefully remind one that
the Turks' love affair for the Arabs in general, and the Palestinians
in particular, is quite unrequited.
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu (pictured left with Fatah
leader Mahmoud Abbas and right with Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal) now
finds his affection and emotional support for the Palestinian cause
First, the flag. The colors of the Palestinian flag (red, white, green
and black) are pan-Arab colors. The Palestinian flag is almost
identical to that of the Arab Socialist Ba'ath Party. It is also very
similar to the flags of Jordan and Western Sahara. Before being the
Palestinian flag, it was the flag of the short-lived Arab Federation
of Iraq and Jordan. All of these flags draw their inspiration from the
Arab Revolt against Ottoman Turkey (1916-1918).
In short, the flag the Turkish prime minister proudly witnessed while
being hoisted at the UN is an inspiration of the flag used by the Arab
Palestinian nationalists in the first half of the 20th century, which
was the flag of the 1916 Arab Revolt against Davutoglu's beloved
Ottoman Empire. The Arabs, including Palestinians, joined the Allies
to fight the Turks during the war.
Similarly, Davutoglu's emotional encounters with Mahmoud Abbas do not
sound as if they are being shared by the Palestinian leadership.
Abbas's Christmas message, which went unnoticed in Turkey, contained
references to the Armenian genocide (still largely a taboo topic in
Turkey) that would have caused a small political earthquake in Turkey,
along with fits of anger and threats, had they been spoken by an
Israeli or European politician. Displaying the usual hypocrisy,
Turkish leaders preferred not to hear what the Abbas said:
"We, Palestinians, have gone through similar experiences as the
Armenians; both of us have been repressed, terrorized and banished. As
the Armenian people emigrated from their country to ours and then to
another place, we too are experiencing the same struggle; we emigrated
in 1948 and the refugees in Syria are migrating to the sea, into exile
and to places only God knows about."
In his speech, Abbas did not forget to "convey our best wishes to our
beloved Armenian brothers in Palestine, in Armenia and in the entire
world," and invited Armenian President Serzh Sarghsyan "to visit
Palestine and we hope he will accept the invitation."
That was "From Palestine with Love" -- to Turkey. Without caring much
about whether the Palestinians love the Turks, the Turks keep on
loving to love the Palestinians. Political Islam has its many
prerequisites. If one of them is unconditionally to hate Israel and
the Jews; the other is an unconditional devotion to the "Palestinian
cause." Turkey's leaders successfully fulfill both prerequisites.
Burak Bekdil, based in Ankara, is a Turkish columnist for the Hürriyet
Daily and a Fellow at the Middle East Forum.
Posted 11 February 2016 - 10:12 AM
THE MINISTRY OF BROKEN DREAMS
Hurriyet Daily News, Turkey
Feb 10 2016
by BURAK BEKDÄ°L
It's the same old Turkish malady: Form over function, or (fancy)
words over deeds. Consistency remains one of the rarest qualities in
governing politics, particularly in foreign policy.
Unwillingly, by their speeches and acts, often totally irrelevant or
disconnected from each other, Turkey's leaders have unwillingly -
perhaps without noticing - given a single, powerful message to the
international community: You can just ignore our big threats and hot
speeches, for even we ourselves do not know whether we can follow
through on them. And the world has kindly chosen to ignore them.
"We will shoot down every foreign aircraft that violates our sovereign
airspace." Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that at the top of
his voice more than a few times. In response, the Russians sent
a second jet to violate Turkish airspace. Miraculously - or not -
the fighter survived.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed countless times that Turkey
would never have any official contact with Egypt's "illegitimate,
coup d'etat regime and its coup dictator." But with Turkey lacking any
serious clout or leverage on regional politics to be able to isolate
Mr. Sisi's Egypt, Erdogan has now generously liberalized ministerial
contacts between Ankara and Cairo. Has Mr. Sisi gone? Is Egypt now
being ruled by a legitimate regime? Mr. Erdogan is also now even
talking about meeting Mr. Sisi if the capital punishment sentences
that Egyptian courts gave to Muslim Brotherhood members are annulled.
Will such an annulment make the "coup leader" a legitimate leader? How
For Mr. Erdogan, the capital sentences in Egypt were an outrage, a
disgrace and many other awful things. But for the same Mr. Erdogan,
the capital sentences in Saudi Arabia given to over 30 people,
including a prominent Shiite cleric, were merely an "internal legal
matter." It is precisely this ideological/sectarian bias that makes
Mr. Erdogan think of Mr. Sisi as a dictator while believing that the
Saudi monarchs' land is a beacon of democracy.
Last year, Pope Francis called the deaths of hundreds of thousands of
Armenians in Ottoman Turkey "the first genocide of the 20th century."
Turkey responded by recalling its ambassador from the Vatican. Last
week, Turkey decided to send its ambassador back to the Vatican. Did
the Holy See change his mind and say the events of 1915-19 did not
amount to genocide? No. The Vatican simply expressed sympathy with
the idea that an international commission should look into the tragic
events of a century ago.
The inconsistencies look even more manifest and humiliating when it
comes to the Kurdish issue. Here, briefly, is the Turkish account:
1. The PKK is a terrorist organization.
2. So is its Syrian franchise, the PYD.
3. The United States should choose between "us" (Turkey) and "the
terrorists" (the PYD), because Washington's special envoy to the allied
campaign against ISIL recently visited the Syrian Kurds, receiving a
plaque from a Kurdish commander and smiling for the cameras. Ankara
vehemently states that its allies, in this case the U.S., should
avoid any contact with "the terrorists," the PYD in this case.
4. Then Mr. Erdogan tells the press that the Turkish intelligence
services can have talks with the imprisoned leader of the terrorist
Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). This inevitably raises the question:
Should it have been CIA officers, instead of the U.S. envoy, who had
talks with the "terrorist" PYD? Would that have made Ankara happy?
5. And there is not a single word from Turkey for Masoud Barzani (who
instead got the red-carpet treatment in Ankara), the leader of the
Iraqi Kurds, who recently said the time was now ripe for a referendum
on Kurdish independence. Is Turkey against any Kurdish independence, or
is it only against Syrian Kurdish and Turkish Kurdish independence(s)?
When their leaders are so confused, it is normal that the Turks also
have confused minds.
According to recent research by Istanbul's Kadir Has University:
1. Slightly over 39 percent of Turks think the U.S. is a security
threat to their own country.
2. Just over 35 percent of Turks think the U.S. is a friend of their
Should anyone be surprised?
Posted 12 February 2016 - 11:15 AM
The furks are at it again!
ANKARA WAR ON TERROR AIMED AT WIPING OUT KURDS: ANALYST
Press TV, Iran
Feb 10 2016
Press TV has conducted an interview with William Jones, with the
Executive Intelligence Review from Leesburg, to discuss the recent
comments by Selahattin Demirtas, the co-chairman of the left-wing
pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), condemning the Turkish
army operations against the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants
in the country's southeast.
The following is a rough transcription of the interview.
Press TV: Do you think that Turkey is eliminating Kurds as a whole
with looking at civilian deaths that are rising, we had 200 and now
this number here 70 of civilians who have died based on army operations
Jones: I think that's the agenda and I think that's been the agenda
from the get go. The Turks unfortunately have been able to use this
so-called war against terrorism to mobilize their forces without
significant criticism from the international community, which
otherwise would have overreacted and what seems to be a policy of
ongoing genocide of the Kurdish part of their population. And this is
their main task in terms of the so-called war against terror. It's
not aimed against ISIL (Daesh) but it's aimed against the Kurds. I
don't know how far they intend to go, but Turkey has a history with
regard to this and everybody remembers the Armenian genocide. And the
question is 'Is history repeating itself in essence?'. And if that
is the case that the international community regardless of the war
on terror has to react to this type of policy, but as yet there's
been little said about it.
Press TV: Unless there's a deal that Turkey has made with the United
States in particular about the issue of the Kurds.
Jones: Well, obviously they've done that. I mean all the compromises
were made; the fact that the Kurds were not involved at all in the
Geneva talks in spite of the fact that they have been the main force
fighting against ISIL and have been supported by the US military on the
ground. They're, nevertheless, not getting much support politically
in terms of coming from the US or from the Western countries. I
think they're in a very bad situation. They've been sold out in
many respects by the US in spite of the role that they're playing
militarily on the ground. And I think that if this continues and we
give more vote to the Turks to do what they're doing, they're going
to hang Kurds and the responsibility will lie not only on Turkey but
also on the Western nations who have allowed that to happen.
Posted 18 February 2016 - 12:27 PM
ERDOGAN'S SON INVESTIGATED IN ITALY
18:28, 17 Feb 2016
Prosecutors in the northern Italian city of Bologna are investigating
the son of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as part of a money
laundering probe, ANSA sources close to the matter said Tuesday,ASNA
The inclusion of Erdogan's son Bilal in the list of people under
investigation follows a petition to authorities from Turkish
businessman Murat Hakan Uzan, a political opponent of Erdogan who
is wanted by Turkish authorities and is in exile. The petition asks
Italian police to investigate potential sums of money brought to
Italy by Bilal, who has been studying at John Hopkins University in
Bologna since last autumn.
Bilal, 35, officially came to Italy to resume PhD studies he began in
2007. However, Turkish anti-government sources say he flew to Italy in
the fall with a "large sum of money" as part of a "getaway operation",
according to Uzan's petition.
The petition also states that Bilal arrived in Bologna with a team
of armed body guards who were not granted access to Italy until they
were conferred Turkish diplomatic passports.
Uzan says he and his family are victims of a political and judicial
campaign launched by Erdogan.
Posted 19 February 2016 - 10:46 AM
150 ALLEGEDLY 'BURNED ALIVE BY TURKISH MILITARY' DURING CRACKDOWN ON KURDISTAN WORKERS' PARTY (PKK)
Published time: 19 Feb, 2016 06:52Edited time: 19 Feb, 2016 08:47
Â© Sertac Kayar / Reuters
A member of the Turkish parliament from the pro-Kurdish Peoples'
Democratic Party has accused the military of atrocities in Turkey's
southeast, claiming they have 'burned alive' more than 150 people
trapped in basements.
"In the Cizre district of SÄ±rnak, around 150 people have been
burned alive in different buildings by Turkish military forces. Some
corpses were found without heads. Some were burned completely, so
that autopsy is not possible," Feleknas Uca told Sputnik, adding that
"most" of those killed were Kurds.
Read more Scores of Kurdish civilians among hundreds killed in Turkey's
southeast - HRW
While Uca's statements have not been confirmed by RT on the ground,
or independently verified by a third party, the MP warned that more
people could face a similar fate as more than 200 people remain
trapped inside buildings across the region.
"The situation in Diyarbakir is terrible. Its district Sur is seeing
its 79th day of curfew. Two hundred people were trapped in basements
and Turkey's special forces won't rescue them,"Uca said.
Turkish security forces have been trying to clear southeastern towns
and cities of PKK members since last July, when a two-year cease-fire
collapsed. Dozens of civilians continue to be trapped in basements in
the Cizre district of Turkey's Sirnak province. Despite an official
announcement that the military op was concluded last week, the curfew
remains in place.
The reports of the massacre first surfaced earlier this week when
the ANHA news agency, reported the discovery of 115 bodies.
The corpses were so badly burned that relatives were only able
to identify 10 out of the 115 bodies found in the Sur and Cudi
neighborhoods of Å~^Ä±rnak's Cizre district. According to the report,
DNA samples were taken from the victims to identify the bodies.
The Todayszaman newspaper reports that as of last Thursday the Cizre
State Hospital morgue had no space for bodies being brought in and
they had been sent to other morgues in the region.
Also, last Thursday, Interior Minister Efkan Ala confirmed that
targeting of the PKK in Cizre had been completed. On Sunday, the
Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) announced the discovery of 31 bodies during
searches in six buildings in Cizre. The army also said the military
operations in Cizre, which started on December 14, had killed 659
Yet despite the completion of the operation, wounded people
are reported to be still trapped inside basements. Kurdish
Netherlands-based ANF News is reporting that DIHA correspondent is
trapped with some 30 people underground, with women and children among
the wounded awaiting medical treatment. Some are in critical condition.
READ MORE: Over 160 civilians, incl. unborn child, killed in Turkish
crackdown on Kurds - report
Last month the Turkish Human Rights Foundation said more than 160
civilians had been killed since Ankara's launched its crackdown on
the PKK in August. Among those killed are 29 women, 32 children,
and 24 people over the age of 60.
Posted 20 February 2016 - 11:41 AM
22 TURKISH AIR FORCE PILOTS KILLED
February 19, 2016
According to Turkish Ulke TV station, the victims of the February
17 terrorist attack in Ankara include 22 Turkish Air Force pilots,
out of 28 total fatalities.
Turkish government has not issued an official confirmation but,
according to Turkish media, Erdogan is deliberately trying to conceal
The explosion took place next to the Turkish Armed Forces headquarters
building, as well as the parliament and government buildings. The
fatalities included 26 military and 2 civilians. Another 60 people
Posted 21 February 2016 - 12:16 PM
20.02.2016 Author: Martin Berger
Will Turkey Become a Failed State if Erdogan Refuses to Step Down?
Region: Middle East
The policies that have been pursued by Turkey's president lately are
turning even his former supporters into sworn enemies. He is
particularly reviled in Europe today due to the encouragement of
unprecedented levels of migration that Erdogan has been using to
blackmail European authorities. Moreover are the scandals uncovered
regarding the Turkish president and his family members involving
stolen oil from ISIS smuggled for profit which have resulted in
Erdogan's reputation going down in flames.
Outright destructive activities that Turkey has been pursuing in the
Syrian conflict have also contributed to its universal rejection. Many
experts agree that it's Tayyip Erdogon who is obstructing the Syrian
settlement, due to his obsessive desire to kill Kurds no matter
what. And Kurds are turning out to be the most effective allies in the
fight against ISIS, both for Washington and Moscow. Therefore experts
are convinced that Turkey's president is becoming a major headache for
both the US and Russia, states which are in two different camps
regarding the Middle East today but still share a common goal of
No matter what your position is, it doesn't seem that Washington is
particularly ecstatic about its former lapdog going berserk.The Wall
Street Journal openly states that:
Turkey's growing hostility to one of America's most effective allies in
the fight against Islamic State-Syrian Kurdish fighters-is undermining
efforts to step up the campaign against the extremist group,
U.S. officials say.
Moreover WSJ states that US officials regard Ankara's statements regarding
Syrian Kurds arming PKK units to be completely unfounded. They believe that
Turkey is becoming a hotbed of tension and Erdogan nothing more that a
political problem, especially for his allies.
However, Tayyip Erdogan prefers to turn a blind eye to such warnings
since he has completely lost touch with reality. After making a major
stake on the creation of a Neo-Ottoman Empire, the Turkish president,
even after a meeting with US Vice-President Joseph Biden that was held
in late January, is still willing to bomb American allies in Syria. The
Associated Press notes that in his euphoria, Erdogan has been demanding
the US to make a choice between cooperation with Turkish authorities and
Erdogan carried on blackmailing Washington after the recent tragic
events in Ankara, when Turkey's president placed the blame on Syrian
Kurds for the brutal terrorist attack that claimed the lives of 28
people, notes The New York Times.
According to the Turkish journal Hurriyet, recent events have clearly
shown that Turkey's politics in Syria have been an utter and complete
failure both in militarily and political terms. This media is convinced
that Erdogan has lost Washington's trusts and, what's even worse,
depleted all of his options that could make any difference in this
Erdogan, has lost a sense of reality and has decided that he can use any
option against opponents of his policy for a `future world domination by
the Ottoman Empire', he even went as far as mocking Russia's President
Vladimir Putin. Bloomberg notes Erdogan's comments: `What are you doing
in Syria? You're essentially an occupier.' Perhaps Erdogan has forgotten
that Russian military forces in Syria have arrived after the request of
the legitimate government of Syria to help it fight terrorists in
accordance with international law, and therefore they would be the last
ones to be called `invaders.=80=9C
It's ironic that Erdogan fits the description of an `occupier' better
than anybody else. How else can one label the ongoing shelling of the
Syrian military in north-west Latakia? Or the incursion of Turkish
forces into Syria, that has even become the subject of a UN Security
Council discussion? The massacre of the Kurdish population along both
sides of Turkish-Syrian border reminds one of the Armenian genocide,
which Turkey has denied to this day despite universal condemnation.
It's been reported that after crossing the border with Syria, Turkish
military units have started digging trenches within 200 meters from the
border. At the same time Turkish artillery units continued shelling Kurdish
forces and civilians alike near Afrin and Aazaz.
It has been underlined more that once that Turkey's policies have become
increasingly unhinged, due to oppressive policies of Tayyip Erdogan.
According to the American political scientist David Goldman,
in the nearest future Turkey runs the risk of becoming a `failed' state.
This is the direct result of misguided Turkish authorities and the
oppression of the Kurdish people, which started with Mustafa Kemal Ataturk
and is being carried on to the present day. And Erdogan's recent actions
can be labeled as a veritable genocide that should be condemned by the
international community. Western military analysts also believe that, if
there is no change in the political leadership of the country, in the
medium term, Turkey won't be able to preserve its borders, and Kurdish
separatism will become the start of an end for it.
Martin Berger is a Czech-based freelance journalist and
analyst, exclusively for the online magazine `New Eastern Outlook
Posted 21 February 2016 - 12:36 PM
Political Analyst: Ankara Explosions Masterminded by Turkish Intelligence
Sat Feb 20, 2016 4:6
TEHRAN (FNA)- A senior political analyst underlined that the recent
explosions in the Turkish capital have masterminded and carried out by
Turkey's spy agency.
"Erdogan is the only one who benefits from the recent explosions in
Ankara; the Kurdish groups and organization not only do not benefit
from such explosion as they are fully aware that political solution is
the only way to achieve their rights," Syrian political analyst Michel
Kalaqasi wrote in the Arabic-language al-Manar newspaper.
Kalaqasi's remarks came while the Turkish authorities blamed Kurdish
organizations for Wednesday's blast in Ankara that killed 28 and left
61 people wounded.
He reiterated that the Turkish intelligence agency has orchestrated
the recent terrorist attacks in Ankara.
In relevant remarks on Friday, Chairman of the International Union of
Kurdish Public Associations Merab Shamoyev underlined that the Syrian
Kurds have nothing to gain from carrying out terrorist attacks on
civilians in Turkey.
"Syrian Kurds immediately denied these allegations. Why would Syrian
Kurds do this? The Kurds currently have a good reputation," Shamoyev
said during a press conference in Moscow.
The politician added that the terror attack could have been a
provocation carried out by Turkey's Justice and Development Party to
justify Ankara's shelling of Syrian Kurds and to start a ground
operation in Syria.
According to Shamoyev, Kurds do not want to secede from Turkey and
only desire autonomy.
In recent weeks, Turkish forces have repeatedly attacked Kurdish
People's Defense Units' positions in northern Syria, claiming the
Kurdish militia threatens Turkish security.
The Kurds are a Middle Eastern ethnic group with a population of some
30-35 million, living mainly in Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria. They do
not have their own state, however, the Kurds have made several
attempts to gain independence and have already obtained autonomy
within the framework of the Iraqi state.
Posted 21 February 2016 - 12:37 PM
Erdogan 'Continues to Play the Fool as He Paints Himself Into a Corner'
© AP Photo/ Basin Bulbul, Presidential Press Service Pool
13:15 20.02.2016(updated 14:52 20.02.2016) Get short URL
President Erdogan's politics of confrontation with the Kurds will only
further complicate Ankara's relations with Russia and the US, and lead
to an escalation of internal tensions, writes Deutsche Welle columnist
Kersten Knipp. The Turkish president, he says, is painting himself
into a corner, while continuing to project a false image of strength.
© AFP 2016/ DELIL SOULEIMAN
Crying Wolf: Ankara Adopting 'Terror' Methods in War Against Kurds
The international community, Knipprecalls, has responded with a sense
of astonishment that the Turkish police managed, in a matter of mere
hours, to identify the perpetrator of Thursday's deadly attack in
Ankara ` allegedly the Syrian Kurd Salih Necar. Meanwhile, the
columnist suggests, "conclusive evidence of the young Syrian's
responsibility" has not yet been provided.
Erdogan, Knipp notes, has spoken about 'information and documents',
but has yet to present the evidence. "At the same time, the PYD denied
any connection to the attack," which failed to make an impression on
authorities, who "launched new deadly attacks on PYD areas around
Unfortunately, the journalist writes, "Turkey is waging a war not
against Daesh (ISIL), and not so much against Syrian President Bashar
Assad, as against the Syrian Kurds. The fact that they seek to build
their own government in the immediate vicinity of Turkey is an
abomination for Ankara."
Erdogan's decision to fight the Kurds "will not be without foreign and
domestic political consequences. In foreign policy, it is likely to
strain the relationship with both the US and Russia." Both countries
cooperate with the YPG, the armed wing of the PYD. "For both, the YPG
is a valuable partner in the fight against Daesh."
As a result, "How Turkey, in view of these two protective powers, will
effectively be able to combat the YPG, remains a mystery to Turkish
generals. If Turkey invades Syria or even sends its aircraft there, it
will immediately find itself opposite the Russian military."
© AFP 2016/ BULENT KILIC
Turkey Continues Shelling of Northern Syria
Moreover, Knipp notes, domestically, Erdogan must deal with the fact
that "the Kurds living in Turkey are closely monitoring how the
president is treating their compatriots living on the other side of
"Altogether, none of this is good for Turkey. Fewer tourists are
coming into the country, the economy is faltering, inflation is on the
rise. Add to this the Syrian refugees, whose acceptance is falling
among the Turkish population, which in itself may [also] increase
domestic pressures. But Erdogan is doing nothing in his foreign and
domestic policy to lower them, and that could get him into trouble in
the long term."
By acting as if he hasn't noticed the problems resulting from his
policies, the columnist says, Erdogan, attempting to present an image
of strength, has only demonstrated his political weakness. "For the
strong man Erdogan wants to make himself out to be, he is looking
very, very weak right now."
Ultimately, the columnist slyly suggests, Turkey needs a partner in
foreign policy. Brussels, he says, might be such a partner to Ankara,
because it desperately needs Turkey's help to solve the migrant
crisis. "For Turkey and the EU, this could be an opportunity for
enhanced cooperation," Knipp concludes.
Read more: https://urldefense.p...x4jwqfdBP290&e=
Posted 22 February 2016 - 10:11 AM
The karma will get them!
FORECAST: FOR TURKEY THERE IS NO GOOD SCENARIO FROM NOW ON
by Anzhela Stepanyan
Monday, February 22, 12:26
"I'm not saying that Turkey has lost its mind and is poised for war,
but the posture in Ankara is very strange and could lead to surprises,"
said Gokhan Bacik, professor of international relations at Ankara's
Washington Post quotes Bacik as saying, "What's happening in Syria
is a question of survival for Erdogan, so it is not possible to rule
anything out." "For Turkey," he added, "there is no good scenario
from now on."
"Turkey is facing a multifaceted catastrophe." "This is a country
that has often had problems in the past, but the scale of what is
happening now is beyond Turkey's capacity for digestion," he said.
According to Professor Bacik, Turkey is confronting what amounts to
a strategic nightmare as bombs explode in its cities, its enemies
encroach on its borders and its allies seemingly snub its demands.
Posted 24 February 2016 - 11:01 AM
TURKEY CONSULATE ATTACHE IN BULGARIA IS DECLARED PERSONA NON GRATA
The Religious Affairs AttachÃ© of the Turkish Consulate General in
the Bulgarian town of Burgas, Ugur Emiroglu, has been declared persona
The Bulgarian authorities have accused Emiroglu of interfering in
the internal affairs of Bulgaria, and given him 72 hours to leave
the country, according to SÃ¶zcu daily newspaper of Turkey.
And the Turkish authorities have acted in response to their Bulgarian
counterparts by declaring the Consul General of Bulgaria in Istanbul,
Angel Angelov, persona non grata, and giving him 72 hours to leave
Posted 25 February 2016 - 10:39 AM
SYRIAN IMPASSE AND RUSSIAN SIEGE
Today's Zaman (Turkey)
February 23, 2016 Tuesday
Turkey has paid a very heavy price for the misguided Syria policy the
Justice and Development Party (AKP)/President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
regime has been pursuing since 2011.
The cost of the adventurous strategy of "changing the regime of a
neighboring country" -- which was in stark contrast to traditional
Turkish foreign policy -- has not been restricted to bilateral
relations and regional policies. The deviant Syria policy has relied
completely on pipe dreams and personal ambitions, and, therefore,
has poisoned Turkey's ties with international powers and organizations
as well. Moreover, it has started to threaten the country's domestic
security, territorial integrity, national unity, social peace and
This article is not spacious enough to describe thoroughly the
damage the AKP/Erdogan regime's erroneous Syria policy has done to
Turkey's critical bilateral and international relations. But we can
cite Turkey's ties with Iran, Iraq, Russia, the United States, the
European Union and even NATO at once. If the AKP/Erdogan regime does
not accept the total failure of its Syria policy and refuses to make a
sharp turn away from it, I am afraid the price it will make Turkey pay
will become higher. And the losses we suffer will become irreversible.
Even if we look solely at the miserable state of Turkish-Russian
relations, we can still see the devastating consequences of Turkey's
failing Syria policy on the country's national interests. Thanks to
Turkey's poorly calculated policies, Russia has already attained
the type of vast geostrategic opportunities it has been unable to
attain for centuries. Russia relies on legitimate excuses it can
easily support under international law and is able to ride on the
international community's justified hatred of the Islamic State of
Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). And it has been able to settle in military
and political terms in Syria, a country having a 910-kilometer common
border with Turkey. In this way, Russia has created the kind of sphere
of influence in the east Mediterranean region it has been dreaming
of for centuries.
Until very recently, Turkey had been enjoying extremely amiable
relations with Russia to the extent of holding joint Cabinet meetings
and mutually lifting visa requirements. But the political, commercial
and economic relations between the two countries are steeply declining
today. Having once reached the level of $32 billion annually, any
improvement in the Turkish-Russian economic ties is now a fancy.
Likewise, Russian tourists who would frequent Turkey in the past are
already a distant memory.
The political, economic, military and strategic price Turkey has paid
is hardly restricted to these. Since Turkey downed a Russian warplane
last November, citing an airspace violation that lasted all of 17
seconds, Turkey has been besieged militarily by Russia. Moreover,
Russia is trying to pull Turkey into a conflict in retaliation for
its downed aircraft. Looking at this picture, we may come with the
following analysis: Largely taking advantage of the opportunities
created by the AKP/Erdogan regime's misguided policies, Russia has
installed itself in Syria, ready for all sorts of potential conflicts.
There is no indication that Russia's military presence in Syria will
With this move, Russia has considered all sorts of potential reactions
from Turkey. It could be said it is even trying to provoke Ankara into
military action. As it does not expect the US, the EU and NATO to show
any serious reaction, Russia is very likely to stay in Syria forever.
Moreover, the political and military system that will take shape in
Syria will certainly be in line with Russia's interests.
Having turned the downing of its warplane into a tremendous strategic
move, Russia has effectively eliminated the presence of Turkish
aircraft in Syrian airspace. Thus, the only thing Turkey could do in
Syria is to shell the positions of the Democratic Union Party (PYD),
People's Protection Units (YPG) and Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
Moreover, even this action runs the risk of Russia viewing this
shelling, which has had a limited effect, as an "aggressive action"
against "legitimate" groups in Syria. Indeed, the Bashar al-Assad
regime treats the PYD/YPG forces as legitimate groups. And its
official position was noted in the records of the United Nations
Security Council. And Russia has officially referred to the armed
PYD/YPG forces as "patriotic opposition groups" in Syria.
The critical question is: Will the Russian military presence -- which
came to Syria under bilateral defense agreements concluded between
the Kremlin and Damascus -- choose to retaliate for the Turkish
artillery fire targeting PYD/YPG/PKK forces in the country? What
would the practical consequences of such an intervention be? As the
Turkish army cannot enter Syria in response to this reaction, isn't
it likely that Turkey would lose any military action beyond or along
the border? If the intense shelling fails to prevent the YPG from
making progress, why doesn't Turkey review this strategy?
Ahead of the cease-fire that will enter into force on Feb. 27, the
groups in the field are expected to act swiftly to expand the area
they control. In such a case, does the policy of sending the dissident
fighters defined as terrorists by the Assad regime and Russia into
Syria from the border at night serve Turkey's interests? Isn't it
obvious that this practice is giving Russia new cards to play?
While the common border between Turkey and Syria is largely controlled
by the PYD, everyone knows that this is only possible thanks to
Russia. In other words, Turkey has come to effectively share virtually
all of its 910-kilometer Syrian border with Russia. Moreover, the
Russian siege of Turkey is not restricted to the Syrian border. As a
matter of fact, Russia historically continues to act as the Orthodox
protector. In this context, Armenia, Greek Cypriots and Greece are
Russia's natural allies. Russian S-300 and S-400 missiles installed
in these countries as well as in Iran surround Turkey on all sides.
Furthermore, Russia has increased the number of warplanes it has
deployed in Armenia and will start to patrol the area in March. Out of
29 outposts of Armenian Border Forces -- where 1,500 Russian officers
serve -- 14 are very close to the Turkish border. The Russian siege on
Turkey is also increasing from the Black Sea. Sending 40 new warplanes
and helicopters to the Kuban airbase, Russia has seriously undermined
the reconnaissance capabilities of Turkish planes over the Black Sea.
As is clearly seen, the Syrian predicament into which Turkey is being
pulled by the AKP/Erdogan regime is making Turkey lose on all fronts.
The way to thwart the Russian siege is to get away from the Syrian
dilemma by retreating from the obvious errors regarding this crisis.
Posted 26 February 2016 - 11:49 AM
It's Time to Kick Erdogan's Turkey Out of NATO
02/23/2016 04:50 pm ET | Updated 22 hours ago
Founding Chairman, Business Executives for National Security
Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
It has always been a matter of historical curiosity that one of the
American diplomats who was deeply involved in the creation of the North
Atlantic Treaty Organization was named Achilles. As the head of the State
Department's Office of Western European Affairs after World War II and the
eventual U.S. Vice Deputy of the North Atlantic Council, Theodore Achilles
played a lead role in
drafting the treaty that was designed to deter an expansionist Soviet Union
from engaging in an armed attack on Western Europe. With 11 European
nations joining the U.S. as founding members in 1949, the alliance quickly
grew to include two other countries - Greece and Turkey - by 1952 and today
encompasses 28 members.
It's a reflection of how difficult it was to imagine that any member of the
organization would betray the rest of the alliance that to this day, NATO
has no formal mechanism to remove a member in bad standing or to even
define what would constitute "bad standing." Yet, nearly three decades
after the collapse of the Soviet Union, NATO members still make the same
solemn vow to one another, known as Article 5,
that they made in 1949: that an attack against any member state will be
considered an attack against all member states, and will draw an immediate
and mutual response. For nearly seven decades, this combination of factors
has been the potential Achilles heel of NATO: that one day, its members
would be called to defend the actions of a rogue member who no longer
shares the values of the alliance but whose behavior puts its "allies" in
danger while creating a nightmare scenario for the global order.
After 67 years, that day has arrived: Turkey, which for half a century
was a stalwart ally in the Middle East while proving that a
Muslim-majority nation could be both secular and democratic, has moved
so far away from its NATO allies that it is widely acknowledged to be
defiantly supporting the Islamic State in Syria in its war against the
West. Since Islamist strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan came to power in
2003, Turkey has taken a harshly authoritarian turn, embracing Islamic
terrorists of every stripe while picking fights it can't finish across
the region - including an escalating war with 25 million ISIS-battling
Kurds and a cold war turning hot with Russia, whose plane it rashly shot
down in November. With those fights coming home to roost - as bombs
explode in its cities and with enemies at its borders - Turkish leaders
are now demanding unconditional NATO support, with Prime Minister Ahmet
Davutoglu declaring on Saturday that he expects "our U.S. ally to
support Turkey with no ifs or buts."
But it's too little, too late. NATO shouldn't come to Turkey's defense -
instead, it should begin proceedings immediately to determine if the
lengthy and growing list of Turkish transgressions against the West,
including its support for Islamic terrorists, have merit. And if they do -
and they most certainly do - the Alliance's supreme decision-making body,
the North Atlantic Council, should formally oust Turkey from NATO for good
before its belligerence and continual aggression drags the international
community into World War III.
This is an action that is long overdue. As I argued five years ago,
"Erdogan, who is Islamist to the core, who once famously declared that
"the mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our
bayonets, and the faithful our soldiers"--seems to see himself as the
Islamic leader of a post-Arab-Spring Muslim world." He has spent the
past 13 years dismantling every part of Turkish society that made it
secular and democratic, remodeling the country, as Caroline Glick of the
Center for Security Policy once wrote, "into a hybrid of Putinist
autocracy and Iranian theocracy." Last fall, he even went so far as to
praise the executive powers once granted to Adolph Hitler.
Under Erdogan's leadership, our NATO ally has arrested more journalists
than China, jailed thousands of students for the crime of free speech,
and replaced secular schools with Islamic-focused madrassas. He has
publicly flaunted his support for Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood while
accusing long-time ally Israel of "crimes against humanity," violated an
arms ban to Gaza, bought an air defense system (and nearly missiles)
from the Chinese in defiance of NATO, and denied America the use of its
own air base to conduct strikes during the Iraqi War and later against
Islamic terrorists in Syria. As Western allies fought to help repel
Islamic State fighters in the town of Kobani in Western Syria two years
ago, Turkish tanks sat quietly just across the border.
In fact, there is strong evidence (compiled by Columbia University) that
Turkey has been "tacitly fueling the ISIS war machine." There is
evidence to show that Turkey, as Near East Outlook recently put it,
allowed "jihadists from around the world to swarm into Syria by crossing
through Turkey's territory;" that Turkey, as journalist Ted Galen
Carpenter writes, "has allowed ISIS to ship oil from northern Syria into
Turkey for sale on the global market;" that Erdogan's own son has
collaborated with ISIS to sell that oil, which is "the lifeblood of the
death-dealing Islamic State"; and that supply trucks have been allowed
to pass freely across Turkey in route to ISIS fighters. There is also
"evidence of more direct assistance," as Forbes puts it, "providing
equipment, passports, training, medical care, and perhaps more to
Islamic radicals;" and that Erdogan's government, according to a former
U.S. Ambassador, worked directly with the al Qaeda affiliate in Syria,
the al-Nusrah Front.
While Ankara pretends to take military action against ISIS, with its
obsessive view of the Kurds, it has engaged in a relentless series of
artillery strikes against the Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units
(YPG) that are routing ISIS troops in northern Syria. The Kurds are the
largest ethnic group on earth without a homeland - 25 million Sunni
Muslims who live at the combined corners where Syria, Iraq, Iran, and
Turkey meet. Turkey has waged a bloody, three-decade civil war against
its 14 million Kurds - known as the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK -
claiming more than 40,000 lives. The most recent peace process failed
when Turkey again targeted the PKK, plunging the southeast of the
country back into war while increasingly worrying Erdogan that Syrian
and Turkish Kurds will join forces just across Turkey's border.
The Kurds, like the Turks, are sometimes seen through the lens of who
they used to be, and not who they are now. In 1997, Turkey convinced the
U.S. to put the PKK on its list of terrorist organizations, and Erdogan
claims Syria's Kurds are guilty by association. But in fact, the YPG has
worked so closely with the U.S. against Islamic terrorists that the
Washington Post recently referred to its members as "U.S. proxy forces."
The Kurds - whether in Syria, Iraq, or Turkey - are, by all accounts,
the fiercest and most courageous fighters on the ground in the war
against the Islamic State in both Iraq and Syria. What's more, the
group represents a powerful alternative to the apocalyptic vision of
Islamic jihadists, embodying what has been described as "a level of
gender equality, a respect for secularism and minorities, and a modern,
moderate, and ecumenical conception of Islam that are, to say the least,
rare in the region."
The Turkish government has tried to lay blame for recent bombings in
Ankara at the feet of the YPG in an attempt to sway the U.S. to oppose
the Kurds. An exasperated Erdogan railed about the loyalties of the
West, accused the U.S. of creating a "sea of blood" in the region by
supporting the Kurds, and issued an ultimatum: he demanded that the time
had come for America to choose between Turkey and the Kurds.
I couldn't agree more: the time has come for the U.S. to choose the Kurds
over Erdogan's Turkey.
Critics argue that the Kurds are unwilling to take the fight to ISIS
beyond their borders, but this actually presents the U.S. with an
opportunity. In exchange for fighting ISIS throughout the region, an
international coalition can offer the Kurds their own state. A Kurdish
state would become a critical regional ally for the US and play an
invaluable role in filling the power vacuum that has emerged in the
Middle East. With the help of the U.S., a Kurdish state could also help
to accommodate Syrian refugees that have overwhelmed immigration systems
in Turkey and Europe. In the long term, it would serve as a valuable
regional partner to stabilize the region, and it would set a strong
example of successful democracy. In other words, Kurdistan could play
the role that Turkey used to play.
It's been said that the difference between being Achilles and almost being
Achilles is the difference between living and dying. NATO can do without an
Achilles heel: It's time to kick Turkey out for good.
Stanley Weiss, a global mining executive and founder of Washington-based
Business Executives for National Security, has been widely published on
domestic and international issues for three decades.
Posted 26 February 2016 - 11:51 AM
In Hussein's Footsteps? Erdogan is Walking Straight Into Washington's Trap
Feb. 25, 2016
[Washington has set a trap for impulsive Turkish President Recep
Tayyip Erdogan, US journalist Mike Whitney notes, adding that a 'color
revolution' in Turkey may one day become a reality.]
On February 19 Washington dismissed a draft resolution by Russia aimed
at preventing a Turkish invasion of Syria at the United Nations
Security Council (UNSC); by making move the Obama administration is in
fact giving the green light to Ankara's ground operation in Syria, US
independent journalist Mike Whitney believes.
"It suggests that the Obama administration thinks that Turkish ground
troops could play an important role in shaping the outcome of a
conflict that the US is still determined to win. Keep in mind, if the
resolution had passed, the threat of a Turkish invasion would have
vanished immediately," Whitney writes in his analysis for
CounterPunch.org, adding that the quashing of the resolution clearly
signals that Washington does not want peace in Syria
Although it is believed that Recep Tayyip Erdogan has "dictatorial
powers" and can launch the much-discussed ground operation in northern
Syria whenever he wants, it is not true: Turkish generals do not want
to bear the responsibility for invading a sovereign state. Therefore,
Ankara is seeking either US/NATO or the UN's blessing, the journalist
Meanwhile, Ankara continues to wage a covert war against Syrian
Kurdish militias by shelling northern parts of Syria and giving Sunni
jihadists, fighting against the YPG (Kurdish People's Protection
Units) forces and the Syrian Arab Army, a free pass to cross the
Turkish-Syrian border and re-enter the war zone.
Whitney underscores that the Obama administration is fully aware of
what is going on. However, while admonishing the Erdogan government
for shelling northern Syria, Washington has vocally recognized
Turkey's "right to defend itself."
"This alone speaks volumes about the duplicity of Washington's
approach," Whitney notes.
According to the journalist, there is something very fishy about the
White House indulging Ankara's warmongering.
On the one hand, Washington is indirectly pushing the impulsive
Turkish President toward a military conflict with Moscow and Damascus
in Syria thus upsetting the Russo-Syrian successful operation. On the
other, a Turkish invasion would aggravate domestic tensions inside
"A Turkish invasion would exacerbate divisions inside Turkey seriously
eroding Erdogan's grip on power while creating vulnerabilities the US
could exploit by working with its agents in the Turkish military and
Intel agency (MIT)," Whitney writes.
"The ultimate objective would be to foment sufficient social unrest to
incite a color-coded revolution that would dispose of the
troublemaking Erdogan in a Washington-orchestrated coup, much like the
one the CIA executed in Kiev," he stresses.
American researcher, historian and strategic risk consultant F.
William Engdahl shares the similar stance. The historian has
repeatedly warned that Washington's cunning geostrategists have set a
trap for both Erdogan and King Salman in Syria and Iraq.
"While the only-too-clever Prince Salman and Erdogan are convinced, by
all the soft, subtle encouragement from John Kerry, from Joe Biden and
those in Washington that they have a green light to invade and take
over the rich oil and gas fields of Syria and of Turkey's next-door
neighbor Iraq and its huge Mosul oil riches, in fact they are about to
fall into a horrendous trap," Engdahl writes in his article for New
As a result, "the trap will likely see the map of the entire Middle
East redrawn fundamentally for the first time since the secret¦
Sykes-Picot Plan," the historian stresses.
And there is a good reason to think such a trap is not a "conspiracy theory."
Whitney draws historic parallels between the ongoing Syrian conflict
and the Gulf War of 1990-1991.
Incredible as it may seem, it was US Ambassador to Iraq, April
Glaspie, who gave Saddam Hussein the nod to invade Kuwait in 1990.
However, "the Iraqi Army had barely reached its destination before the
US launched a massive military campaign (Operation Desert Storm) that
forced Saddam to speedily withdraw along the infamous Highway of
Death," the journalist narrates, adding that it was the first phase of
Washington's plan to overthrow Hussein and replace him with a
It seems Erdogan is walking straight into a similar trap.
Posted 01 March 2016 - 12:37 PM
DAVUTOGLU'S AFFRONT: TURKISH PM COMPARES PRO-RUSSIAN KURDS TO "ARMENIAN GANGS"
Genocide | 29.02.16 | 15:09
In a recent public statement Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu
has used an expression that incites enmity towards Armenians.
In criticizing the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP)
of Turkey, Davutoglu reportedly said: "They're collaborating with
Russia, just like the Armenian gangs. They are going and opening a
representation in Moscow."
Turkey has been increasingly at loggerheads with Russia over the
Syria crisis. The relations between the two countries escalated last
November when Turkish air forces shot down a Russian warplane at the
Turkey denies it exterminated 1.5 million Armenians in a planned
genocide during the First World War when it fought against the Russian
Empire in the Caucasus front.
Ottoman authorities routinely referred to ethnic and religious
minorities that tried to put up resistance to their policy of
animalization as "gangs". Ottoman Armenians also tried to defend
themselves with arms in several districts of Turkey during those years.
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