Taide’s Weblog

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The Will of the People is no Policy

with 2 comments

“Anatolian Eagle”, a military exercise scheduled for last week between Israel, the US, NATO as an organisation, Turkey and Italy, was cancelled a week ago. The schedule faltered when Turkey’s government disinvited Israel’s military, and was then cancelled altogether because of American disappointment with Ankara’s rejection of Israel’s participation.

At the beginning, Ankara’s motivation was unclear. Technical problems were given as reasons, then delays and malfunctions in Israeli military supplies of ten Heron drones, until prime minister Erdogan released the cat from the bag: “in accordance with the will of the people”, no Israeli fighter pilots would be allowed on Turkish soil. And Turkey’s foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu added that in times where there were no efforts for peace, Turkey couldn’t afford to be regarded as Israel’s military partner.

Martyrs, Everywhere - Aleppo's Armenian Quarter

Martyrs, Everywhere - Aleppo's Armenian Quarter

To base ones policy on “the will of the people” is populism, and there is reason to believe that Ankara’s main motivation is that it wants to become more influential in the Middle East, and arguably in Central Asia, too. You got to make them love you, and some Israel-bashing should work fine to this end.

But opportunism in politics usually only leads to short-term benefits. Syria might profit from Turkey’s new policy – if it really is one -, but Syria’s Armenians will watch Ankara’s moral plateau boots with astonishment, if not with disgust. If the 2009 Gaza War is a reason to lock Israel out of the traditional alliance, the Armenian genocide – and Ankara’s denial of it – would be reason enough to cancel any cooperation with Ankara, military or otherwise.

Besides, if Turkey ceases to mediate between Syria and Israel – and Israel has reasons now to reject further Turkish efforts in this field – it is hard to see how Turkey could play a positive role for Syria.

OK – Israel’s policies on Palestine aren’t smarter than Turkey’s on Israel and the Middle East. The settlements in the West Bank don’t serve Israel’s security at all. One can argue about, and possibly buy the need for the Gaza war, but the government’s refusal to rein in on the West Bank settlers is opportunistic. And its opportunism costs, not only in Israel’s relations with Turkey.

But Ankara’s big words against Israel’s army are unsavoury. No angry statement about Hamas and its rocket attacks on Israel, which actually triggered the ensuing Israeli “war crimes”. The Ummah is a cartel of perfect silence, when it comes to “holy wars” and their crimes.

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Written by taide

October 18, 2009 at 6:54 pm

2 Responses

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  1. Gazan Journalist reviews Turkish TV Drama on Gaza

    morris

    October 19, 2009 at 1:10 pm

  2. I don’t think he’s a good journalist. More of a propagandist.

    justrecently

    October 19, 2009 at 3:05 pm


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