Category Archive 'Ayrilik'

19 Oct 2009

Turkey Turning Away From Western Alliance

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Middle East

The combination of Turkish state-run television’s recently debuted prime-time drama, Ayrilik “Farewell,” depicting Israeli Defence Force soldiers as bloodthirsty war criminals murdering women and children with the announcement of a long-term Turkish strategic alliance with Syria, and the Erdogan government causing the cancellation of NATO military exercises may all be signs of a major and permanent rupture in relations between Turkey and the Western Alliance.


London Times
:

Israel’s relations with Turkey plunged to a new low yesterday after Turkish state television aired a fictional series showing troops murdering Palestinian children during last winter’s Gaza war.

Ties between the two strategic regional allies had already taken a serious blow this week when Turkey demanded that Israel be excluded from military exercises that it was staging with US and Nato allies. The US was forced to cancel the war games.

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Caroline Glick
thinks we have lost Turkey.

Once the apotheosis of a pro-Western, dependable Muslim democracy, this week Turkey officially left the Western alliance and became a full member of the Iranian axis.

It isn’t that Ankara’s behavior changed fundamentally in recent days. There is nothing new in its massive hostility toward Israel and its effusive solicitousness toward the likes of Syria and Hamas. Since the Islamist AKP party first won control over the Turkish government in the 2002 elections, led by AKP chairman Recip Tayyip Erdogan, the Turks have incrementally and inexorably moved the formerly pro-Western Muslim democracy into the radical Islamist camp populated by the likes of Iran, Syria, Hizbullah, al-Qaida and Hamas. …

Once the apotheosis of a pro-Western, dependable Muslim democracy, this week Turkey officially left the Western alliance and became a full member of the Iranian axis.

It isn’t that Ankara’s behavior changed fundamentally in recent days. There is nothing new in its massive hostility toward Israel and its effusive solicitousness toward the likes of Syria and Hamas. Since the Islamist AKP party first won control over the Turkish government in the 2002 elections, led by AKP chairman Recip Tayyip Erdogan, the Turks have incrementally and inexorably moved the formerly pro-Western Muslim democracy into the radical Islamist camp populated by the likes of Iran, Syria, Hizbullah, al-Qaida and Hamas.

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Spook86 would like to think all this simply represents a diplomatic feint aimed at covering up some impending activities involving Turkish airspace, but I suspect he is too optimistic.

A regular military exercise involving the U.S., Israel, Italy, Turkey (and other NATO elements) was suddenly cancelled last week, just days before it was scheduled to begin.

The U.S. suddenly scrapped plans for the Antolian Eagle drill after Ankara announced plans to pull-out of the exercise, citing participation by Israeli Air Force units. Turkish officials told their counterparts in Tel Aviv they could not abide IAF participation in the exercise, believing the Israeli jets would be the same ones that bombed Palestinian targets in Gaza earlier this year, during Operation Cast Lead.

According to the Jerusalem Post (and Israeli Radio), the final cancellation came after U.S. and other NATO members threatened to pull out if the IAF was not allowed to participate. …

There is a chance that the new “rift” between Tel Aviv and Ankara in genuine, and rooted in Turkey’s reaction to the Israeli campaign in Gaza. But there is also the very real possibility that the exercise cancellation is a hint of things to come–an operation that may require access to Turkish airspace, without the “formal” approval of the general staff, or the civilian government.


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