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Is Turkey Going Rogue?
Atlantic Community ^ | 8/26/15 | Jon Abbink

Posted on 08/26/2015 5:43:25 PM PDT by markomalley

Turkey's geo-political maneuvers may urge reconsideration of its NATO membership. While the threat from Daesh grows, Ankara is more focused on the continuing fight with the Kurds. The Erdoğan government is undermining the core values of what NATO stands for, and its anti-Kurdish policy spells problems for its role in the region. NATO has to make a statement and also work behind the scenes to engage Erdoğan to prioritize the war against Daesh.

Under the pretext of an anti-Daesh (ISIS) campaign, Turkey's government since late July 2015 is harshly repressing the Kurds, playing the ‘anti-terrorism' card towards NATO. But the real terrorists - Daesh - are deemed secondary. The Turkey-based PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) does have a partly violent record, and recently it carried out attacks on Turkish policemen and what PKK sees as Turkish Daesh collaborators. But PKK actions pale into insignificance in the face of Daesh, with its debased, genocidal violence, theatrically displayed and propagated in the world media. Daesh is the greatest threat in the Middle East and has a global agenda, which the world ignores at its peril. The wait-and-see attitude in the West towards Daesh is puzzling as well as dangerous and self-defeating.

The Kurds are now the crucial factor in tackling Daesh. Turkey, as a NATO partner, should recognize this, but is an ambivalent player in the anti- Daesh venture. Until the Daesh attack on 20 July 2015 in Suruç, killing some 34 civilians, Turkey was not doing much against Daesh because it was seen as a force against Syria's Assad, sworn enemy of Turkey. There were reports of tacit cooperation and ongoing oil supplies from Daesh territory to Turkey. Ankara has been bombing Daesh positions, but it is now clear that Turkey would prefer to have the PKK destroyed first rather than take on Daesh.

President Erdoğan's motive here is provided by his failure to get an absolute majority in the Turkish general elections on 7 June 2015, where the predominantly Kurdish party HDP (Peoples' Democratic Party) won 13% of the vote. Erdoğan was reportedly livid when this happened, and sought ‘revenge'. Alleged PKK camps were first bombed on 25 July, one day after the killing of two Turkish military (who according to the PKK were collaborating with Daesh). Erdoğan took this attack as the parting shot for a campaign against the Kurds, using all political and military means. Part of this is sabotaging coalition-government negotiations (in a 45-day period), which now have failed, leading to new elections. Erdoğan and his Islamist AKP party will now make sure that the HDP will not get the same good results.

The scenario also implies continued harsh action against the PKK, intimidation of the HDP politicians, and at the same time presenting the Kurds to NATO as a ‘national security issue' (which they are not). Listening to Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, it seems that NATO falls for this. Thus we are saddled with an Islamist Turkish government clouding NATO aims, ongoing repression of the Kurds, and expansion of Daesh along the Turkish border. The civilian victims of the Daesh attack of 14 July are already being forgotten in the political dust clouds of today.

This shows the duplicitous nature of Turkish policy. The civil liberties and democratic record of the Erdoğan government is very weak, to say the least, and not worthy of a NATO ally. While NATO is of course primarily a security pact and not a democracy project, there are shared political values and interests vis-à-vis other political blocs. In the Preamble of the 1949 North Atlantic Treaty (the NATO charter) it says that it is founded on "…the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law." Turkey is showing clear signs of relapse here. Of course, in light of its recent political record, Turkey has no chance now – and now no ambition either – to become an EU member. Membership would indeed be unfitting. But NATO-membership is something else, and is benefitting to both Turkey and the other member states.

The biggest deception, however, is Turkey's halfhearted, non-principled attitude towards Daesh. It seems not to mind Daesh (like Turkey, of Sunni Muslim orientation) threatening Europe and making life difficult for its neighbor Syria, and has no big urge to fight it. As we write, the US and Turkey are said to prepare joint action against Daesh, with a major operation imminent. But at the same time Turkey reserves the right to bomb the Kurds, and the risk is that if called to moderation, Erdoğan might retract his permission to the US Air Force to use Incirlik air base after the likely new Turkish elections later in 2015.

Turkey bombing the Kurds should be declared unacceptable by NATO. It deflects from the real problem. One should plead for a serious study of Turkey's political and geo-strategic record in recent years, and for a critical reconsideration of its NATO membership.

Erdoğan is undermining core values of NATO. Turkey's strategic value in today's world, where powers shift and where political Islamism is the great danger, has to be tested and re-evaluated. NATO, via its Political Affairs and Security Policy Division, could do this by insisting formally on Turkey's help to combat Daesh as a major security threat to all NATO's members states, and on the ‘trade-off': NATO support given to Turkey (as a border-line state) when attacked by PKK terror or Syrian warplanes could be in exchange for serious anti-Daesh action and cutting the informal links Turkey maintains with this entity. The NATO Council has to make a statement to this effect, and also work behind the scenes to engage Turkey to prioritize its military effort. Under the AKP and Erdoğan, Turkey may have been an economic success, but it's becoming a political liability for democracy, for NATO, and for the wider Middle East region.


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Israel; Russia; Syria; US: California; US: Maryland; US: New York; US: Tennessee; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: bradsherman; california; caliphate; chattanooga; chuckschumer; crusaders; eliotengel; erdogan; iran; iraq; isis; israel; jihad; kurdistan; kurds; lebanon; maryland; nato; newyork; receptayyiperdogan; rop; russia; schumer; stenyhoyer; syria; tennessee; turkey; turkeyisis; upchuckschumer; waronterror
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1 posted on 08/26/2015 5:43:25 PM PDT by markomalley
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To: markomalley

The way Obama keeps the Kurds down by starving them for weaponry and supplies and while he lavishes equipment on the Iraqis who abandon it to ISIS, he should get along just fine with Erdogan.


2 posted on 08/26/2015 5:49:50 PM PDT by Truth29
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To: markomalley

Whatever descendants of remnants that may have survived the 1915-1918 efforts of Turkey to eradicate the Armenians as a people might argue that Turkey has always been a rogue state.


3 posted on 08/26/2015 5:51:01 PM PDT by sparklite2 (Voting is acting white.)
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To: markomalley

My BIL has dual citizenship. He made a costly trip back to Turkey just to vote against Erdogan.


4 posted on 08/26/2015 5:51:35 PM PDT by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra (Don't touch that thing Don't let anybody touch that thing!I'm a Doctor and I won't touch that thing!)
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To: markomalley

Islamist Erdogan is financing, arming , etc. the Sunni Islamic State Daesh and Boko Harum. Then giving them medical care in Turkish hospitals.

Islamist Erdogan is murdering the Kurds [ and other kafir ] wherever he can find them - like Mad Mo recommended.

Islamist Erdogan is setting up Islamic schools to brainwash the next generation with Islamic Common Core.


5 posted on 08/26/2015 5:51:35 PM PDT by george76 (Ward Churchill : Fake Indian, Fake Scholarship, and Fake Art)
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To: markomalley

Well, Turkey is certainly going Islamist. Erodgen would love to be Caliph.


6 posted on 08/26/2015 5:51:35 PM PDT by Paladin2 (Ive given up on aphostrophys and spell chek on my current device...)
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To: markomalley

What? Many Freepers have told me in years past we should bow down before Trukey because we need their air bases? Haven’t we appropriately denied any Armenian was ever killed by a Turk. etc? Does this mean we should further grovel before Turkey?


7 posted on 08/26/2015 5:53:19 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: markomalley

Nobody liked the Ottoman Empire (except I suppose the Germans), but let’s face it — dismantling the Ottoman Empire led to regional chaos which is still underway 100 years later.

An expanding modern Turkey, however, can only make things worse.


8 posted on 08/26/2015 5:53:35 PM PDT by BenLurkin (The above is not a statement of fact. It is either satire or opinion. Or both.)
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To: markomalley

It would be an extremely bad idea, I mean a terrible idea, to admit Turkey to the European Union.


9 posted on 08/26/2015 5:53:50 PM PDT by skeeter
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To: markomalley

In the near future, Turkey will ally itself with Russia and Iran.

The Ataturk era is long over.

Turkey is reverting back to its Muslim ties and heritage.

They are proving to be a growing impediment to the aims of the West, and they do not care.


10 posted on 08/26/2015 6:05:52 PM PDT by exit82 ("The Taliban is on the inside of the building" E. Nordstrom 10-10-12)
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To: markomalley

“Is Turkey Going Rogue?”

Huh? They have been ‘rogue’ for centuries, kind of like France.


11 posted on 08/26/2015 6:09:02 PM PDT by spel_grammer_an_punct_polise (Why does every totalitarian, political hack think that he knows how to run my life better than I?)
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To: exit82

“They are proving to be a growing impediment to the aims of the West, and they do not care.”

Precisely!


12 posted on 08/26/2015 6:11:37 PM PDT by Magic Fingers (Political correctness mutates in order to remain virulent.)
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To: AdmSmith; AnonymousConservative; Berosus; bigheadfred; Bockscar; cardinal4; ColdOne; ...

thanks markomalley.

Meet the Americans Flocking to Iraq and Syria to Fight the Islamic State
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/3329618/posts


13 posted on 08/26/2015 6:12:50 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (What do we want? REGIME CHANGE! When do we want it? NOW)
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To: exit82
The End Times alliances are being formed to attack Israel. It sure looks like an Islamic Antichrist.

Meanwhile, the USA has been warned (9/11). Instead of humility and repentance, we have turned our backs on God and responded with sinfulness, hubris and defiance. Now comes the era of Judgment against America.

14 posted on 08/26/2015 6:32:21 PM PDT by Zuse (I am disrupted! I am offended! I am insulted! I am outraged!)
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To: markomalley

There is a NATO signatory whose air force is working closely with the Kurdsin their war with ISIS. I hope things don’t get tangled up.


15 posted on 08/26/2015 7:39:39 PM PDT by Former Proud Canadian (Save Western Civilization. Embrace the new Crusades.)
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To: Zuse; RushIsMyTeddyBear; metmom; CynicalBear; SkyPilot; tuffydoodle; tang-soo; righttackle44; ...

Yes, I also believe Turkey is part of Ezekiel 38 attacking Israel - The House of Togarmah.

(little bit different - but yes, the USA has elected non-Godly leaders - especially one).

It does not bode well for our country. Pray up folks.


16 posted on 08/26/2015 8:23:38 PM PDT by SaveFerris (Be a blessing to a stranger today for some have entertained angels unaware)
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To: sparklite2

do note that most of those carrying out the violence during the Armenian genocide were Kurds


17 posted on 08/27/2015 12:14:39 AM PDT by Cronos (Obama’s dislike of Assad is not based on Assad’s brutality but that he isn't a jihadi Moslem)
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To: BenLurkin
Dismantling the Ottoman Empire could have been done a lot better if European, Christian, powers had agreed. When they DID agree and not undermine each other you had successes like Greek independence.

the Ottoman Turks were in retreat from 1683 -- the Russians hammered on them from the north, taking over the Caucasus and heading southward along Romania, while the Habsburgs were hammering them from the West

Then France and england interfered -- the French tied up with the Ottomans to check the Austrians. If the French had been defenestrated at this time, the Austrians would have freed the Balkans

Then the Prussians took the opportunity to oppose the Austrians by tying up with the Turks

Then the English and French opposed Russia in the Crimean war, or we would have had an independent Balkans in the early 1900s and even a Christian Lebanon and Syria

18 posted on 08/27/2015 12:19:05 AM PDT by Cronos (Obama’s dislike of Assad is not based on Assad’s brutality but that he isn't a jihadi Moslem)
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To: exit82
Turkey will never ally itself with Iran -- the Turks are Sunnis, Turkic peoples and the Iranis are Shia, Irani peoples -- the Iranis remember the slaughters that the Turkic peoples visited on them from the 10th century -- Seljuks, Ottomans, Timurids etc. and they remember that for millenia greater Irani included what are now Turkic nations like Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan etc.

And the Iranis and Turks have allied with foreign powers against each other since the 18th century at least, while remember that Kurds are an Irani people

.....

Turky and Russia would never be allies -- Russia's main aim since the 15th century has been to re-unite the Orthodox lands and to take back Constantinople -- it is ingrained in their national psyche at the core -- even the Bolsheviks had this

Russia and Iran are more natural allies and have been allies in one way or the other for centuries (though the Russians also hammered at them in the 18th century, taking Azerbaijan from them

19 posted on 08/27/2015 12:23:06 AM PDT by Cronos (Obama’s dislike of Assad is not based on Assad’s brutality but that he isn't a jihadi Moslem)
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To: markomalley

Would have been better off letting the Russkies have Turkey rather than having them join NATO. Who knows if the Russians had Turkey, Istanbul would be Constantinople again.


20 posted on 08/27/2015 12:39:53 AM PDT by dfwgator
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