Skip to comments.The Sick Man of Europe – Again: Islamism and leftism add up to anti-American madness in Turkey.
Posted on 02/15/2005 9:29:20 PM PST by quidnunc
Ankara, Turkey Several years ago I attended an exhibition in Istanbul. The theme was local art from the era of the country's last military coup (1980). But the artists seemed a lot more concerned with the injustices of global capitalism than the fate of Turkish democracy. In fact, to call the works leftist caricatures many featured fat capitalists with Uncle Sam hats and emaciated workers would have been an understatement. As one astute local reviewer put it (I quote from memory): "This shows that Turkish artists were willing to abase themselves voluntarily in ways that Soviet artists refused even at the height of Stalin's oppression."
That exhibition came to mind amid all the recent gnashing of teeth in the U.S. over the question of "Who lost Turkey?" Because it shows that a 50-year special relationship, between longtime NATO allies who fought Soviet expansionism together starting in Korea, has long had to weather the ideological hostility and intellectual decadence of much of Istanbul's elite. And at the 2002 election, the increasingly corrupt mainstream parties that had championed Turkish-American ties self-destructed, leaving a vacuum that was filled by the subtle yet insidious Islamism of the Justice and Development (AK) Party. It's this combination of old leftism and new Islamism much more than any mutual pique over Turkey's refusal to side with us in the Iraq war that explains the collapse in relations.
And what a collapse it has been. On a brief visit to Ankara earlier this month with Undersecretary of Defense Doug Feith, I found a poisonous atmosphere one in which just about every politician and media outlet (secular and religious) preaches an extreme combination of America- and Jew-hatred
(Excerpt) Read more at opinionjournal.com ...
Istanbul, Turkey The year is 2007. After a clash with Turkish forces in northern Iraq, US troops stage a surprise attack. Reeling, Turkey turns to Russia and the European Union, who turn back the American onslaught.
This is the plot of "Metal Storm," one of the fastest- selling books in Turkish history. The book is clearly sold as fiction, but its premise has entered Turkey's public discourse in a way that sometimes seems to blur the line between fantasy and reality.
"The Foreign Ministry and General Staff are reading it keenly," Murat Yetkin, a columnist for the Turkish daily newspaper Radikal, recently wrote. "All cabinet members also have it."
Several other columnists have also written about the book, suggesting its depiction of a clash between the two NATO allies could become a reality. Serdar Turgut, the editor of Aksam, one of Turkey's largest newspapers, penned a recent column that took one of Metal Storm's premises that members of Skull and Bones, the secret society that President Bush joined as a student at Yale, has taken control of US foreign policy and presented it as fact.
"Powerful people, nearly all of whom are members of a secret 'sect,' are aiming to bring a radical change to the order of the world," Turgut wrote.
He further suggested that the US military is developing technology that would allow it to trigger earthquakes, something that will eventually be used against Turkey.
The book has arrived at a time when anti-American sentiments are running high in Turkey. A BBC poll taken last month found that 82 percent of Turks believe Bush's reelection made the world a more dangerous place, the highest figure in any country surveyed. During her recent visit, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice expressed concern about the issue to Turkish officials.
Meanwhile, there is increasing tension between Ankara and Washington. Turkey is frustrated with what it claims is US failure to take military action against the separatists of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), who are holed up in the mountains of northern Iraq. The country is also concerned about events in the oil-rich Iraqi city of Kirkuk, where the Turks say Iraqi Kurds are staging a power grab as a prelude to the creation of an independent Kurdish state, something it views as a serious threat.
(Yigal Schleifer in The Christian Science Monitor, February 15, 2005)
To Read This Article Click Here
No small achievement, that.
Sounds like Turkey will fit in nicely with certain segments of the EU.
The Cold War is over - what made the glue of such alliances - fear of the USSR - no longer exists - get used to it.
The Socialists (Leftists) in the USA are aligned with Islam. And it is a very DANGEROUS SICK, TWISTED Marxist alignment that is going to do great damage -- heads up everyone.
Last I looked both the Left and Right was aligned with Islamists during the Cold War.
"The Cold War is over - what made the glue of such alliances - fear of the USSR - no longer exists - get used to it."
Eggsackly. Turkey screwed us out of using the 4th ID as planned, which contributed to the effectiveness of the establishment of the Baathist insurgency. Had they been deployed quickly from the north as planned, instead of having to go aroung Robin Hood's barn to come in from the South, the immediate effect on the war and its extension would have been dramatic.
We owe Turkey nothing, and Turkey will soon realize it has little that we want. As it slides back into islamism, it will become a problem mainly for the euro's not us.
What shocked me was not that Turkey said no but that Washington assumed the Turks would say yes - after they were paid off billions in bribes that Wolfowitz promised the Turks.
I am sorry to say this but if the State Dept/Pentagon were caught surprised by Turkey's rejection then that does not bode well for the ability of those that advise Bush.
The previous government was much more friendly to US interests.
Turkey is ruled by the Turkish General Staff. The politicians - no matter what party is elected - serve the military and act as a cover.
"We owe Turkey nothing, and Turkey will soon realize it has little that we want."
Turkey? Turkey who? Where's Turkey? /sarcasm
You are right Turkey HAD a strong ally in the United States, but now I can see no reason to go out of our way in this relationship.
If only that were true (they were in favor of helping us out in Iraq to get more favors). Unfortunately, they've lost control to the islamowhackos who have reduced the military's power to get on the good side of the EU.
About "Metal Storm" you've got to be kidding me, an alliance of the EU and Russia beat us? They can't defend themselves, much less defend another country. Honestly, Turkey would probably do just as well fighting on its own. They probably wouldn't be a cakewalk either.
Excellent article! It's illuminating how paranoia feeds on itself and metastasizes throughout society.
I remember when Turkey was a strong ally of ours. It's a shame to see it destroy itself.
They've already achieved it. And it could so easily have been otherwise. Had they supported the U.S. effort in Iraq they would now share Great Britain's position - respect, credibility, clout, and a commanding force throughout the Middle East. Instead they've opted to lick the EU's boots, boots that may well end up kicking them in the face. It was a stupid decision and a betrayal of a proud people.
The reports were that the French informed Turkey that France would block Turkey's entry into the EU if Turkey allowed us to send the 4th MI Division across Turkish territory to attcak Iraq from the north.
We need to turn up the support we give to Armenia and Greece and start beating the drum for an independent Kurdistan. That will send them a message.
At the risk of getting flamed, I have to say I also feel sorry for the many conservative Turks (and at least a few of them are/were Freepers) who have to put up with the insults from both sides now.
Turkey has trended away from Ataturk's vision in recent years, but at all is lost.
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