Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Imperial Ottoman Empire Reborn

"Under challenging conditions, we are protecting our people from barbaric gangs such as ISIS and Al-Nusra. Countless states and media outlets have repeatedly reported about the support Turkey has been providing to these terrorist groups. Apart from the terrorist groups attacking us, we as YPG have engaged in no military activity against the neighboring states or other forces."
"We would like to repeat our message to the people of Turkey and the world: We have no links to this incident... We have never been involved in an attack against Turkey. The Turkish state cannot possibly prove our engagement in any kind of attack on their side because we were never involved in such an action. Turkish Prime Minister Davutoglu's remarks 'Ankara attack was conducted by YPG' is a lie and far away from the truth. With this statement, Davutoglu wants to pave the way for an offensive on Syria and Rojava and cover up Turkey's relations with the ISIS which is known to the whole world by now."                                            YPG General Command, Syria
"Thousands of settlers from Anatolia were shipped in by the Turkish government to occupy former Greek villages and to change Cypriot demography -- in the same manner the occupying Ottoman Empire once did in the 16th century. ... The island remains conquered not because the Greeks have given up, but because their resistance is futile against a NATO power of some 70 million people. Greeks know that Turkey worries little about what world thinks of its occupation."                                                                                                           historian Victor Davis Hanson 
If any area of the world can be said in its totality to be in a state of dysfunction it is the Middle East. Political upheavals, state violence, mass murders, enslavement, rape, sexual slavery of women and children, threats, intimidation, sectarian slaughter, drug trafficking, weapons proliferation, the Middle East has it all, and more. The 'more' includes its outreach to other countries of the world in the use of oil wealth to establish thousands of mosques and madrassas, training clerics to preach in them, and exhorting Muslims who escape the violations of their human rights in their home countries, not to integrate into European culture, accept its laws, and reflect its values.

Turkey in particular, along with Saudi Arabia, is involved in describing assimilation into European culture, accepting democracy and pluralism and the equality rendered under the law as offensive to Islam which has its own, superior and religion-specific Sharia law. Germany, which has permitted immigration of millions of Muslims, last year took in another million, bringing its total Muslim demographic to a whopping six million. And to that six million Recep Tayyip Erdogan barks that it is an offence against human rights for them to surrender their culture by integrating into the larger society.

Erdogan: No room for dialogue with Kurds
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. File photo

This is the man who has single-handedly -- backed by his Islamist Justice and Development party, returned Turkey from its post-Ottoman Empire hostility to Europe and the non-Muslim world that Kemal Ataturk overturned --  back to pride in Turkishness, and the proud purity of Islamism, matched with contempt for the West and in particular the European Union which has hesitated for decades to accept Turkey as a member and is now vacillating in the hope that Turkey will stem the tide of Syrian refugees streaming into Europe in exchange for money and favours.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, presenting as acceptably ferociously Islamist and terminally genocidal, has had ample support in the past from the Turkish government turning a blind eye to its presence in Turkey, graciously enabling it to cross the border from Turkey into Syria, expediting foreign jihadists' journeys toward ISIL membership. Denying strenuously and with appropriate outrage that it has ever done any such thing, as a member in somewhat-questionable standing of NATO.

Rumours that Turkey contributed to ISIL's rise to prominent success through the provision of funds, logistics and arms have never been proven, but nor have they been disproven, while there are many in the know who know what they know. Erdogan's flaming temper has turned in wrathful vengeance against Turkey's Kurdish population, traditionally maligned and considered inferior to Turks, denied their language rights, their culture, their state aspirations as a vicious affront against Turkey. Turkey's response has been indiscriminate attacks resulting in civilian deaths, the destruction of Kurdish homes and neighbourhoods.

Greece's uneasy propinquity has been fraught with threat and violence emanating from Turkey. Erdogan's rash decision to have his warplanes shoot down a Russian plane under pretext of a multiple-seconds 'invasion' into Turkey's airspace in his rage over Moscow's entrance in support of the Syrian regime battling Syrian Sunni rebels a case in point of rampant hypocrisy that Turkey excels in. Greek airspace has been violated 2,244 times throughout 2014 by Turkish aircraft, according to Athens News Agency quoting the Greek military.

Turkey has viciously excoriated Israel for its 'occupation' of Palestinian land, and its 'genocidal' onslaught of Gaza and the West Bank, fulminating against the Jewish presence on Arab Muslim land. 
But Turkey's invasion of Cyprus, a Greek Christian island nation cannot be construed as an invasion. Turkey's 1974 military campaign must be considered as Turkey does, a "peace operation", much as Hamas launches rockets into Israel as a peace operation, whose purpose is sadly misinterpreted by the Israeli military and its government.

What Turkey did achieve in occupied northern Cyprus was its success in an ethnic cleansing and colonization campaign, achieved through mass murder, wholesale and repeated rapes, torture and generally inhumane treatment of the Greek community historically established there. Its mission happily completed by going on to plunder the Cypriot cultural heritage, and in the process destroying churches to achieve the end it triumphantly describes as a peace operation.

Turkey's first Minister of Justice, in 1930, described the rationale behind Turkey's view of itself: "The master in this country is the Turk. Those who are not genuine Turks can have only one right in the Turkish fatherland, and that is to be a servant, to be a slave. We are in the most free country of the world. They call this Turkey." 

Comedian Jan Böhmermann is being prosecuted in Germany for reading a disparaging poem about Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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