Category Archives: Turkish downing of Russian plane

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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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

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.

 

 

 

 

The Significance of the Failed Turkish Coup

The coup of July 15-16, 2016 that  was not supposed to have failed, failed. The balance of power, the strategic changes  that are taking place now and that will take place in the future will have profound influence on the flow of world history.

Turkey is the key country of the Mediterranean Sea. Via the Straits of Bosporus and the Dardanelles, is the gateway to the Black Sea, Russia,  the Caucasus Mountains, and the Caspian Sea, as well as being the road that leads to Baghdad, the Persian Gulf, and the Indian Ocean. The question must be asked why a country of 84,000,000 people, occupying an area of over 750,000 square kilometers, and with a very proud history is not only not independent but subservient to the Interests of the US. They helped the US in many wars from the Korean, 1950-53, to present-day involvement in Syria and Iraq, with no or minimal benefits to Turkey. With Russian intervention in Syria, the military situation there began to change in favor of Syria and its allies. The neocons in the US State Department panicked and wanted a confrontation with Russia. They wrote a letter to Secretary Kerry in early 2016 to that effect.

The shooting down of the Russian bomber over Syria on November 24, 2015, changed everything. The US had hoped for a military confrontation between Russia and Turkey, but President Putin never took the bait. Putin accused the Turks of ” stab in the back”, and ordered massive sanctions against them. Turkey suffered all the economic costs of the Turkish boomerang, the US none, but it was about to suffer the strategic damage of the Turkish boomerang…

President Erdogan started to doubt the wisdom of Turkish foreign policy concerning his neighbors. Europe would not let him join the Union, nor give visa free entry to Turkish citizens, and Russia had punished the Turks economically. The US, most likely, wanted for Turkey to participate in the invasion of Aleppo which would destroy the Syrian resistance. But Erdogan refused, dismissed his pro-US prime Minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, and apologized to Putin. The US strategy in Syria, and, in Iraq was now in disarray. Something had to be done, a nice little coup d’etat with a minimal of noise, but it simply did not work out.

The consequences of this unsuccessful coup d’état will be enormous. The intimate subservient relationship that Turkey had with the US is now gone. No amount of nice talk and visits by US officials will restore this relationship. Erdogan has chosen independence for Turkey that the Turkish people support. If that means a friendly and strategic relationship with Russia, Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Lebanon, then so be it. If that means a cool and correct relationship with Israel and the US, then so be it.

The rapprochement with Russia is remarkable. The meeting between Erdogan and Putin in Russia will be significant. The possibility of a strategic alliance in the making between Iran, Turkey, and Russia is there.  This alliance could easily beat ISIS and free the Syria and Iraq of the scourge. Iraq and Syria would join the alliance of Iran, Lebanon, Turkey, and Russia. Another domino would fall, and Saudi Arabia, Israel and the US would be totally isolated. That would be a nightmare for Israel and the US. The European Union would start shifting East. After all, Napoleon said that “geography is destiny”. Let us observe what happens. Only time will tell.

The Turkish Blow Back?

There is a lot of nonsense being written lately about the unsuccessful Turkish coup. The claim has been made in the Western press that Erdogan staged the event, or that it was carried out by junior rank officers and was doomed to failure. It is all lies, sheer fabricated lies. These lies convey a sense of disappointment on the part of the West that the coup had failed. There is absolutely no rejoicing in the West that the coup has failed, and that the democratically elected President Erdogan of Turkey was able to crush the revolt. Strange, very strange indeed!

The coup was very well organized, but the assumption on which it was based was false. The premise was that the people would support the coup, but the opposite happened, the people supported the President when he called the people to go out into the streets and oppose it. The only people who supported the coup were the pro-American elites in the military and in the government. But this was not enough, because the people were against it. (The previous four coups from 1960 to 1997 were successful because the majority of people did not oppose the revolt, or did not care. How things change!)

Turkey has been a faithful ally of the US and Israel. Turkey supplies nearly half of Israel’s supply of fresh water. No country is viable without fresh water. In Syria, it was supporting the US and Israeli attempt to overthrow President Assad and partition Syria into smaller regions which would be controlled by Israel. The Kurds would be allowed a state carved out of Syria and Northern Iraq which would then attract Turkish Kurds to form a larger Kurdistan, and which would be very destabilizing to the existence of the Turkish State.

The shooting down of the Russian unarmed bomber over Syria ordered by, at the time, Turkish prime minister Davutoglu in 2015 changed everything. The US regarded this event positively because it increased the animosity between Russia and Turkey, especially at a time when the US is building the Wall of Enmity between the West and Russia stretching from the Baltic States, Ukraine, Poland, The Balkans, Turkey, Persian Gulf, Indian Ocean, Straits of Malacca, Philippines, Japan to South Korea. It would be an unbreakable wall that would hem in Russia, Iran, China, and North Korea.

But things never work out exactly as planned. The Russian plane shoot down changed the Russia-Turkish relations from mutual reciprocity to mutual animosity. For downing its plane, Russia responded with a massive economic reaction, affecting tourism, agricultural products, construction, pipelines, and nuclear energy. Turkey was stunned. No aid was coming from NATO under Article Five. The Turks were on their own. The Syrian War intensified as Russia had intervened, ISIS and other groups which the US supported were on the run. Refugee crises were created which did not benefit the European Union.

The Turkish Kurds were getting restless and violence inside the Turkey was increasing. Wars in Syria and Iraq were not benefiting the Turks. Being member of NATO means only one thing being subservient to the interests of the US. Erdogan chose independence for Turkey and from now on, Turkey would have an independent foreign policy, if that means leaving NATO, it will leave NATO. He dismissed his pro-US prime minister, Ahmet Davutoglu and replaced him by Binil Yildirim, an individual who has national Turkish interests at heart. Erdogan apologized to Russia for the downing of the plane and Putin reciprocated by lifting the Russian tourist ban and  ban on construction. The two leaders will meet in early August. What a change!

President Erdogan announced his desire for rapprochement with Russia, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. It appears that ISIS and other terrorists are feeling the heat. The Americans panicked and a coup d’état was arranged that was doomed to fail, even though it was long in the planning.

There will be a black out on much of the news coming out of Turkey that will be perceived as negative to US interests. The Turkish purges that have been ordered by Erdogan for all levels of society that may be pro-western.  A great confrontation is developing between the US and Turkey. There is no turning back, unless, another pro-American coup succeeds, an event that is likely but will not succeed. Turkey will close Incerlik Air force base in south east Turkey, and, will leave NATO. The oxygen will be cut to ISIS and other similar groups. Assad will reclaim his country, as Iraq will reclaim its independence. There is certainty that there will be coups d’état in Saudi Arabia,  the Gulf States, and Jordan. All these countries, including Turkey, will join the Eurasian Union and the Shanghai Co-operation Organization. The currency of trade will be the yuan, gold, or the ruble.

This Turkish tectonic shift East will have a profound effect on world history. Only time will tell.

Will Turkey leave NATO and join the Shanghai Cooperation Organization?

Turkey has been a “good boy” ally of the West since 1952 when it joined NATO. It’s been in many wars supporting the US, from the Korean,1950-53 to Iraq One, 1990, Afghanistan 2001. Iraq Two in 2003, to present wars in Iraq and Syria, by supporting ISIS. ISIS nearly won, but now, is possibly losing.

The only benefit Turkey has ever achieved from being the “good boy” ally was supplying cheap labor to West German economy. Germans look kindly on the Turks for being their close ally in the First World War, and by being pro-German in the Second World War.

For all its devotion to the West, the rewards have been small. Wasn’t it the British ex-prime minister Cameron, who said that Turkey can become member of the European Union in next three thousand years? Turkey has no chance of joining the Union. Vague promises yes, but no membership. Russia was one of the most important trading partners of Turkey. Turkey gambled and lost an excellent neighborly relationship with Russia by shooting an unarmed bomber over Syrian territory. I am sure that, Turkey got an encouragement from the West to increase the enmity between the Turks and the Russians. The economic reprisals from Russia were massive and Turkey is still suffering from them. All this Turkish confrontation with Russia did not cost the US a penny, but the benefits were immense.

The Turks started to put two and two together and they did not like what they saw. President Erdogan started to think. First, he apologized for the plane, and Putin responded; rapprochement between Russia and Turkey began. It will be a slow process, but it is the beginning.  Also, Turkish rapprochement with Iran, Iraq, and Syria will begin. ISIS will be the big loser. Someone in the West did not like this, hence the coup d’état.

The coup d’état failed, and the Shanghai Co-operation Organization beckons to Turkey to join provided the conditions are met. The New Silk Road of Afro-Eurasia led by China also beckons Turkey, and Turkey might just bite. As a result, the West will face a debacle in the Middle East. The West will not like the rapprochement between Turkey and Russia. Another coup d’état will be attempted to prevent it. A great confrontation between Turkey and the West is in store. How the historical wind will blow, and how history will flow remains to be seen. Only time will tell.

Turkey is on a suicide mission

Turkey’s leadership is in hysterics. By shooting down a Russian plane over Syria, it wanted to provoke a confrontation or even war between NATO and Russia. Turkey hoped to be a key player in the confrontation, but this attempt did not succeed. It has been an overall failure. What the Turks do not realize is that they are on the side of lies and deception. If Syria, Iraq, Iran, and Hesbollah of Lebanon were to be destroyed, the chief beneficiary would be the State of Israel. The above mentioned countries would be fragmented into small sheikdoms under Israeli control. In this arrangement, Turkey would only play a subordinate role. All the wealth of the Middle East would be in the in the hands of Western Corporations. All the land between the two rivers, the Nile and the Euphrates would be under Israeli control. The Israeli Flag symbolizes this concept which may occur in the not too distant future. The US definitely supports this policy. That is why the US, Israel, Turkey, Wahabi Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf States support ISIS. The US wants to use Turkey as the spear against Syria and Iraq, and indirectly against Iran and Russia.

Would Turkey be an effective spear of the US in the Middle East?  That is a big unknown, because, Turkey has a huge internal problem called the Kurds. Kurds account for about  25 percent of Turkey’s population, and that is around twenty million people. All of South East Turkey is Kurdish. Kurds want greater autonomy, if not total independence. Turkey has a powerful military that has never been tested.  For Turkey, to so call  “liberate Aleppo” it would need a force of at least 25 to 30 thousand. It would have to face the Syrian Army which has rejuvenated itself. Nothing rejuvenates an army more quickly than a string of victories. In the last six weeks, the Syrian army has had a series of successes. Helping the Syrian Army would be Hesbollah of Lebanon, the Iraqis, the Iranians, and the Russian Aviation. The Saudis claim they would like to fight, and they may, they would enter Syria via Jordan. The Iraqi Shias would destroy them.  The US, Britain, and Israel would help the Turks. NATO would be neutral because it would lack unanimity.

The war will be bloody. But the morality and ethics of the Universe will be on the side of Syria. The Turkish incursion into Syria, if it takes place, would be a suicide mission. The morality and ethics of the Universe are on Syrian Government side because it’s defending the independence and dignity of its people. The crucial battle for Aleppo is taking place. Syria and its allies have an upper hand. US is calling for cease fire because its side is losing. ISIS and the others are on the run. The city of Aleppo is about to be liberated by Syrian troops. The US wants cessation of fire so its side gets re-enforcement and supplies from Turkey, or Turkey intervenes directly. It is not likely that Syria and its Allies will fall for this trick.

If Turkey intervenes it will face the Kurds of Turkey, Iraq, and Syria. A Kurdish war of independence would arise in Turkey. Turkey could disintegrate. Other ethnic groups such as the Armenians would also rise up. Remember the Armenian Genocide by the Turks in the First World War One. Also the Balkan States of Serbia. Montenegro. Macedonia, Greece, and Bulgaria might gang up on Turkey and expel it from Europe. They would recapture Constantinople. Do not doubt this, they did it once before. Two members are in NATO, Greece, Bulgaria, and Montenegro is being offered membership. Turkey, of course, is also a member. NATO is being enlarged on the insistence of the US, but, at the same time it is disintegrating.  Also, all these Balkan States are Greek Orthodox as is Russia. Basilica, Saint Sophia, now a mosque is a symbol of Greek Orthodoxy. It would be Ironic if this happened but History is full of Irony. Irony is a cosmic manifestation of Truth and Justice. Turkey has a choice, be a peaceful good neighbor, be good to all its ethnic groups or face disintegration. Under present leadership, Turkey will most likely choose suicide. Only time will tell.