Category Archives: Russia

Turkish election of June 24, 2018

On June 24, 2018, Turkey will hold elections which will change the political structure of the country. The presidential system will replace the parliamentary one. Executive power will be dominant. The individual behind the change is president Recep Erdogan.

Erdogan has been active in Turkish politics since 1994 when he was elected mayor of Istanbul  1994-98. Since about 2000 to 2014 he was prime minister. In 2014, he was elected president for five years. This June election of 2018 is a year early, because he wants to change the political structure of the country with a strong president as head of state. He is the leader of the Justice and Development Party. He is a conservative Islamic nationalist which the Turkish people love.

Turkey is geo-strategically a very significant country. It controls the Bosporus and the Dardanelles. It is part of Europe and the Middle East. A nation of more than 80,000,000 people, about 20% are Kurds. The country is fairly large, 302,500 square miles; it encompasses all of the Anatolian Peninsula.

Turkey fought in the Korean War,1950-53, on the US side. It has been faithful and subservient to US interests. It has tried to be a member of the EU without success. Now Erdogan no longer cares about the EU. Under Erdogan for over three decades, Turkey has developed into a modern industrial state. Turkey has had an insincere policy towards Syria, with no problems with neighbours, to outright support of ISIS; it had a strategic partnership with Israel. That changed because of the Palestinians which Turkey strongly supports. Turkey still supplies almost 50% or more of Israeli fresh water needs. Until 2016, Turkey had an antagonistic relationship with Russia. It shot a Russian jet over Syria claiming it was over Turkey. The Russian ambassador to Turkey was assassinated in Istanbul in 2015. Possibility of war existed, but Russia as usual played calmly.

The coup d’etat of 2016 changed everything; it failed badly. Turkey claims that the coup was organized by religious leader Gulen who lives in the US. Turkey accused the US of being involved, which the US denies. The US refuses to release Gulen to Turkish authorities. Russia helped Erdogan during the coup. A policy of friendship developed between Russia and Turkey. Erdogan apologized to Putin for shooting down the Russian jet and the assassination of the Russian ambassador; Russian tourists and trade returned to Turkey.

Iran, Russia, and Turkey are coordinating their policy on Syria.  The policy includes no partition of Syria and that Assad’s fate is to be decided by Syrian people. This is anathema to the US and Israel. The US is in direct confrontation with Turkey over Kurdish areas of Syria. Turkey will not allow a Kurdish enclave in N.E. Syria. The US wants an independent Kurdistan in Syria which would be allied with Israel. Turkey is vehemently opposed to any Kurdish state. Syria, Iran, and Iraq are also opposed to a possible Kurdish state. Erdogan is opposed to any idea of a Kurdish state.

June 24, 2018 elections are absolutely crucial for Turkey and the West. It seems Turkey is orienting itself to Russia and Eurasia. Turkey is buying the Russian S-400. The US threatens sanctions on Turkey and may not sell Turkey its F-35; Turkey doesn’t care. If Erdogan gets strong support in this election it will indicate that the Turkish people support his policies. Turkey will embrace Russia,  and NATO will become irrelevant as two major members clash.

The future relationship between Turkey and the US will be very interesting; it will affect the entire world. Watch the Turkish elections this coming Sunday, June 24, 2018.

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US/Israel vs Iran

Israel claims that Iran is the greatest threat to its security. Iran will never attack Israel, unless it is attacked by them. It has no need to. The reason Israel hates Iran is because Iran supports the Palestinian cause, Hezbollah of Lebanon, and Assad of Syria. Hezbollah defends Lebanon from Israeli attacks. Iran under the Shah was the best ally in the Middle East that Israel ever had. How things change! Now, Iran is the greatest enemy of Israel. Iran does not recognize Israel since the Islamic Revolution of 1979. If Israel, supported by the US, attacks Iran it would be a big deal. A Third World War could prove to be inevitable. So, let us analyze the situation.

Israel is a very vulnerable state, despite a superiority of armaments, including nuclear weapons which Israel denies. One thing Israel does not have is water. No water, no life. The Jordan River has become a creek which Israel has had to share with the Kingdom of Jordan. The Golan Heights, Syrian land occupied by Israel in the 1967 war, supplies Israel with drinking water. Desalination and re-purification of water is but a small part of Israel’s water supply; very expensive process. It does not produce drinking water, and is energy dependent. So, Israel is forced to import drinking water from Turkey.

Israel is a growing, sophisticated, modern economy. For all life on Earth, water is an absolute necessity. Countries that are in need of more water: Jordan, Sahel Africa, Saudi Arabia, India, China and some others. But none need it as critically as Israel. Under present circumstances no Arab country such as Lebanon and Syria would willingly supply water to Israel. Israel can only get water from Lebanon and Syria by force. Hence, war in Syria.

The war in Syria was started because of water. That cannot be said officially though. War must have a noble façade to cover its real reasons. These noble reasons for war: Assad is a dictator, butcher, killing his own people, gassing them and creating refugee problems for Europe. A slogan was created: “Assad, the butcher, must go”. The Spear of Change was to be ISIS or the Islamic State, created by the UK/US/Israel. It was assumed to be easy a la Libya and Iraq with the same results: chaos. It did not happen though or, at least, not yet.

Syria appears to be winning, but the war is not over. The second phase of war is being planned.  Macron is saying that the UK/US/FR should stay in Syria to rebuild it: Unbelievable! Assad just returned his medal, the Legion of Honour to France. This is classical colonial speak that has no place today. The war in Syria will continue and expand to include Iran.

The idea of staying in Syria is to prevent an Iran-Syria-Lebanon alliance. Turkey and Pakistan will join this alliance. This is important because Pakistan is a significant nuclear power in alliance with China. This alliance would be a dominant force in the Middle East and would keep the peace. This cannot be allowed to happen though, because then Israel would be contained. UK/US/FR will not allow containment of Israel; expect more war.

Presently, Israel is facing a new Palestinian Intifada with no end in sight. It is very violent and Palestinians are being killed and wounded daily. The young girl, Ahed Tamimi is the symbol of Palestinian resistance. This Intifada will go on for a long time until the Palestinians get their basic rights. Intifada will exhaust Israel. Also, Israel has been pinpricking Syria for decades with no response. MSM does not report much. Sad!

The US/UK/FR attack of last week was to demonstrate their power. Their plan was to destroy the Syrian military infrastructure. It failed. Out of 103 missiles launched, 71 were shot down, Two missiles that failed were given to Russia by Syria. French president Macron suggested that UK/US/FR should stay in Syria. If the UK/US/FR stay in Syria, guerilla war will develop against them and their allies. The country they will blame will be Iran, as they blame Iran for everything that happens in the Middle East. Israel will clamor for an attack on Iran as it has done so far, but with greater intensity and results. The US may attack Iran. Israel would then attack Hezbollah to get the waters of Lebanon, and partition Syria. But the Iran-Syria-Lebanon alliance will not buckle. The Islamic world, Russia, and China would aid the Alliance. Nuclear war could become inevitable.

The Situation in the Middle East

World alliances are shifting because of the Middle East. Geographically speaking, the Middle East is the center of Afro-Eurasia, hence the center of the world. The Greater Middle East extends from the Balkans to Pakistan and from the Caucusus Mountains, Iran to  Libya, Egypt, Sudan, the Red Sea, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. It is one of the great geostrategic regions of the world. Control the greater Middle East and you control the world through its geography and strategic resources such as oil and gas.

Western Powers, Britain and France have been controlling the Middle East since the end of the First World War. But since !945, it has been under the rather firm control of the USA. Also, Israel, since its establishment in 1948 has been most feared factor in the Arabic and Islamic Middle East.

Today, the situation in the Middle East is precarious. Several wars are going on simultaneously: the Palestinian struggle against Israeli occupation, the Iraqi war and occupation by the US since 2003, the Turkish- Kurdish conflict, the Syrian war since 2011, and the Yemeni war of the past several years. The Saudis are very unstable. The Yemeni War is the Hanjar in the Saudi heart. It is their own fault. Jordan is also very shaky, dominated by Israel and the Saudis. Egypt is on the sidelines for the moment.

Two Islamic, non Arabic countries, Iran and Turkey are destined to play very significant roles in the area and in the world. Also, Pakistan will play a significant part. These three countries will change the flow of history because they control the most geostrategic area of the world’s geography.

The US/UK/Saudi/Israeli plan is to destroy and partition Syria. The only way to do that is to remove Assad. US/Israel also want to destroy Hezbollah, in order for Israel to get the waters of Lebanon. Without this Lebanese water resource, Israel cannot survive. No nation is viable without an abundant natural water supply.

The opposing forces of Syria, Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Hezbollah, Turkey, and Russia want to preserve the unity and territorial integrity of Lebanon, Syria, and Iraq.

The US will use the Kurds of Syria to establish a Syrian Kurdistan in N.E. Syria. Eventually, over a decade or two, the Kurds of Iraq, Turkey and Iran would join the Syrian Kurdistan which would create Greater Kurdistan in alliance with an enlarged Israel and the US. In the ensuing conflict Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, and Turkey would be partitioned or even destroyed. Russia would be kicked out. All the wealth of the Middle East and its geostrategic real estate would be under US/ Israeli control; this is the ultimate plan of the Neocons.

The foundations of these grand strategic plans are very fragile. The US is threatening to bomb Syria, specifically Damascus and the presidential palace on the basis of false accusations that Syria is using chemical weapons in Ghouta. The US has used this excuse in the past to bomb the country. Russia said it will oppose any US action. If the US acts, confrontation between the US and Russia is inevitable. Naval forces of both countries are in a position of confrontation. The US Ambassador, Niki Haley, delivered a very aggressive speech at the UN Security Council a week ago. Turkey has announced plans to control the Syrian Kurdish area to the Iraqi border. Also, Iraq has agreed for Turkish troops to enter Iraqi Kurdistan. This will lead to an inevitable confrontation with the US. Also, Hezbollah is expecting and waiting for an Israeli attack on Lebanon and Syria.

In all seriousness, a big confrontation, possibly a third world war, is around the corner. We will see.

Turkey vs the US

In one of my previous posts, I stated that Turkey was one of the most geostrategic pivots in the world. That is true. This geostrategic pivot gives Turkey immense power and advantages vis a vis any power outside the region of the Balkans, Bosporus, Black Sea, and the Middle East.
In the year 2018, it is asserting its power to impose its will on the Kurdish enclave of North Syria to the Iraqi border; this means Turkish confrontation with the US.

Turkey is totally opposed to the US policy in Syria. The US wants to partition Syria, not because it is a threat to the US, which it is not, but because it would enable Israel to expand into both Lebanon and Syria. It would thereby obtain the waters of Lebanon.

Turkey considers the US presence in Syria and Iraq a threat to Turkish security and independence. Turkey has a large Kurdish population, up to 30,000,000 people in its South East Region. There are about 3,000,000 in Syria and Iraq respectively; approximately 3,000,000 in Iran. ( Actually, Kurds are scattered all over the Middle East. ) Kemal Ataturk was a Kurd. He defeated the British at the Battle of Gallipoli in 1915, in the 1st World War. Churchill was eager to conquer Constantinople for the British, and not to help the Russians as claimed by the British. Kemal Ataturk developed very close relations between Turkey and the new country of the USSR.

A large Kurdish State in the Fertile Crescent would mean the end of Syria, Iran, Iraq, and Turkey. A Kurdish state allied to Israel would dominate the Middle East. Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon want to prevent this scenario; most of the Islamic world is against such a scheme.

What now? Turkey means business. It is prepared to face the US in Syria, possibly in Iraq as well. Confrontation is inevitable. It depends on what scale, but it will be on big scale. Let us analyze.

The US will not leave Syria. It will leave only if forced. Turkey will not back off. All of Turkey is upset with the US. Both countries are members of NATO, but the US runs NATO. What the US says goes. That has been the internal relationship of the organization since its inception in 1949. Turkey has been a member of NATO since 1952, a faithful US ally in the Korean War,1950-53. Since a failed coup d’état of July 15, 2016, the US/Turkish relationship has been very strained. Turkey has abandoned a policy of subservience to the US and chosen a policy of national interest and independence. National interests of Turkey are in direct conflict with US strategy. The policy of restraints on Turkey that the US is pursuing only irritates Turkey even more.

Before a complete rupture occurs, the US will try another coup d’état. If it succeeds, Turkey will go back to the NATO stable, and the US will again have a subservient Turkey and will be able to create Kurdistan in Syria. However, the coup may not succeed.

What is evident in this struggle is that Turkey is not afraid. Turkey is an advanced economy. It has powerful armed forces. Turkey may be in possession of nuclear weapons which gives it a nuclear back bone to face any opponent, including the US. The West was hoping to start a Russo-Turkish war after the Turks shot down a Russian jet in Syria on November 24, 2015; it did not succeed.

If Turkey goes all the way to conquer Syrian Kurdish region, it will inevitably come in conflict with the US special forces advising the Kurds. If the US sustains casualties, the US will respond and open conflict will occur. The Turks will not back off. Neither will the US. The conflict will enlarge. If no armistice is reached, both sides will pour troops into the conflict. NATO will be in a dilemma. Many NATO members would refuse to join the US vs. Turkey conflagration; NATO would break. The Islamic World would side with Turkey, and the Third World War could break out.

Short of a general nuclear war between the US and Russia, the US-Turkish War would severely damage the world’s economy, let alone cause massive environmental and structural damage to the world. The consequences would be unpredictable; we will see

Status of the Wall of Enmity

To maintain its world power, the US has built a Wall of Enmity between the East and the West. With the fall of the USSR, the Wall was not abandoned but extended into the Russian territories of the former Soviet Union. The Baltic Republics are firm members of the Wall, despite the fact that they are in firm super depression because of severe Russophobia. Poland, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Czechia, Slovakia, and the new republics of former Yugoslavia: Croatia, Slovenia, Monte Negro. Serbia, so far, have refused to join NATO. Promises not to expand NATO were made by the US to Russia. Apparently, promises were broken. In Europe, NATO is shaking but not breaking down;  it is the Key Stone of the Wall of Enmity.

In the Middle East, the Wall of Enmity is breaking down. Turkey, a key NATO member, is confronting the US on all fronts: Jerusalem, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. Turkey has not forgotten the failed coup attempt of July, 2016. Turkey is suspicious of the US. The US is treading gently because Turkey is the main fresh water supplier to Israel. The US does not want to lose Turkey as it lost Iran.

In South Asia, Pakistan is definitely drifting away from the Wall of Enmity. Trade with its key partner, China, is in Yuan. Intelligence is no longer shared with the US and it may block US access to Afghanistan. The US is trying to woo India but India is very fickle; it is not likely that India would join the Wall of Enmity.

In South East Asia and Oceania, only distant Australia, New Zealand, and some island states of Oceania are firm members of the Wall of Enmity. All littoral states of South East Asia do not want to antagonize China.

The North East Asia Wall of Enmity is pivotal to US power in Asia and the Far East. Under no circumstances is the US willing to lose it. The only way to maintain its position in North East Asia is by stoking tensions with North Korea. South Korea under President Moon is trying to eliminate confrontations with North Korea. The Winter Olympic Games are possibly a blessing in disguise. No war during the Olympic Games was an ancient Greek tradition. Talks between the Koreas that will exclude the US may lead to something significant which the US will not like. Bluntly speaking, South Korea may refuse to be subservient to the US.

If South Korea refuses to be subservient to the US, will Japan be far behind? Not likely.

 

Turkey, the Geo-Strategic Pivot of History

To paraphrase Napoleon: “Geography is destiny; control Constantinople, control the world.” This was true in the time of Napoleon, and it is even more true today.

Turkey was one of the most faithful allies of the US. It helped the US in the Korean War, 1950-53. A NATO member since 1950. To whatever the US wanted, Turkey said yes. Turkish labour helped rebuild post war West Germany. But Turkey was taken for granted by the West, essentially a colonial entity in possession of the most geo-strategic real estate in the world…

How things change. Today, the US and Turkey are in confrontation mode. Until July 15, 2016, Turkey embraced the US- Israeli view of Syria; Assad must go, because Assad would not buckle. There was a confrontation with Russia. A Russian plane was shot over Syria by a Turkish jet. A Russian ambassador was assassinated in Turkey. Trade sanctions were imposed on Turkey, and Russian tourists boycotted it. The US was hoping for an irrevocable confrontation between Russia and Turkey. A coup d’état against Erdogan, if successful, would make this confrontation with Russia permanent. This confrontation would re-enforce the Wall of Enmity which the US is building from the Baltic, the Ukraine, Turkey, Syria, Iraq, India, yes India through the Straits of Malacca to the Philippines, Japan, and South Korea. If the coup d’etat had been successful, Russia would have been eliminated from Middle East involvement.

But the coup did not succeed, possibly with Russian help. Erdogan apologized to Putin, and relations normalized. Slowly, rapprochement between Turkey and Russia became friendly. And then suddenly, three countries: Iran, Turkey, and Russia synchronized their Middle East policy especially in regards to Syria and Lebanon and Hezbollah. So, now, instead of Russian disarray, one has US-Israeli-Saudi disarray.

How will things play out? World events cannot be taken in isolation. The Wall of Enmity has been breached in two places: the Ukraine and Turkey. The Wall of Enmity in North East Asia is stable, because the tension is high.

The situation in the Ukraine is different because of the German situation. Germany is entering a period of uncertainty. Whoever and under what circumstances the next German government is formed, the German people will demand independence, denuclearization, and the end of US military occupation. The Germans are increasingly yearning for an independent foreign policy. The US will try to prevent a German exodus by increasing tensions and the chances of war in the Ukraine and blaming Russia as the aggressor.

Turkey is the key geostrategic pivot of History. The Turks are a proud, nationalistic people. Under Erdogan, they have had the first truly independent foreign policy since the time of Kemal Ataturk. They will not buckle to Western pressure. They do not care for the EU. By being independent and moving closer to Eurasia, Turkey will help reduce or even eliminate Western influence in the Middle East. Turkey will withdraw from NATO very slowly and the US will not push. If Turkey withdraws, NATO unravels. That is the one thing the US does not want.

Another attempt at a coup d’état cannot be excluded.

 

 

 

 

Very Short Observations III

US decertification of the Iran nuclear deal is very unwise. It has given big momentum to two movements in the world: the dollarization of the world, and, ironically, the isolation of the US, (instead of Russia). In 2014, President Obama imposed sanctions on Russia because of the Ukraine and Crimea returning to Russia of its own volition, and made the claim that Russia  would face isolation; never happened.

The US imposed severe sanctions on Iran. The EU followed. But despite these sanctions, Iran grew stronger, and is the dominant regional power, along with Turkey. Iran with Hasbollah of Lebanon and Russia is enabling Assad of Syria to win. ISIS is being defeated in Iraq and Syria; Israel is in a panic. Israel insists something must be done about Iran; will the US be induced to attack Iran?

The Ukraine is on the verge of rebellion. Misha Shalikashvilli, ex-president of Georgia and ex-governor of Odessa, is leading the charge; things remain to be seen. Ukrainians in general want to be with Russia, as well Byela Rus, Kazakhstan, and other republics of the former USSR. It is only matter of time before the armed forces join the people in the streets of Kiev and overthrow Poroshenko.

In the Middle East, a huge alliance is forming: Turkey, Iran. Iraq, Hesbollah of Lebanon, Yemen. Pakistan is drifting towards the Alliance. The Pakistani contribution to the Alliance will be nuclear. China is a strong ally of Pakistan. Turkey is definitely drifting away from the US, as is Pakistan.

It is possible that the US will lose the Middle East; only Israel will remain. The US is moving into Africa, especially former French Africa. It is rich in minerals such as uranium, gold, iron, copper, etc.; it is also rich in hydrocarbons. Losing four military personnel in Niger is no accident. The reality is that the US is involved in all of Africa. The idea is to prevent Africa from falling under the influence of China, ” the One Belt, One Road” system.

China is introducing  the “Petro-Yuan System” in the oil trade. This could be a very severe blow to dollar domination. Venezuela, Iran, Russia, others will participate in Petro-Yuan System. De-dollarization is accelerating. Many a US politician has said:” We will protect our way of life whatever it takes.” In other words, de-dollarization will not be allowed to succeed. Good reason to have a war.