Bombs go off in Turkey, a great spree of terrorist bombings and attacks. Practically every day Turkish soldiers and civilians are being killed. The killings are done ostensibly by the Kurd terrorists of PPK, but this is a new step in Israel’s warfare against Turkish independence. Encouraged by Israel, PKK extended its operations to the Aegean and the Black Sea resorts all the way to Izmir.
Israelis armed, supplied and trained Kurdish terrorists for many years; they have turned the Iraqi Kurdistan into their territory with many Israeli businessmen doing their affairs waiting for Kirkuk oil to flow to Haifa as it did in the days of colonial British rule. The Kurds remained a hidden tool of Israel in the region for many years; its activation now shows that Israel still wants to teach Turks a lesson.
The main neocon magazine in the US, frontpagemag.com, openly called to support the Kurds to retaliate for Turkey’s support of Palestine. Another Jewish right-wing think-tank speaks of mobilising the US congress to condemn one-hundred-years-old Armenian tragedy as a means to undermine Turkey. After many years of siding with Turkey, the Jewish Lobby now decided to switch sides and support the Armenian claims. So Turkey is now under attack from all sides. It could be expected, for the popular Israeli slogan says “if force does not work, use more force.”
This was the explanation of the Flotilla Massacre on May 31, 2010. The Mavi Marmara attack was intended to be a short, sharp shock to the increasingly independent Turks. Israelis intended to terrify and frighten them into obedience; that is why they ordered a blood bath on board the Mavi Marmara. As we know now, the Israeli commandos began shooting well before encountering any resistance. They did not want to play soft ball, submission was what they are after. Murder was not a result of surprise or miscalculation: it was an open attack on Turkey.
Israel’s conflict with Turkey was not an unfortunate result of the murderous raid. The confrontation between them became acute two weeks before the massacre, on May 17, 2010. Together with Brazil, Turkey has arranged and signed the Tehran Declaration of a nuclear fuel swap deal with beleaguered Iran. This declaration could derail the US-Israeli plans of sanctioning Iran to death prior to bombing it.
Israel wants Iran destroyed; as much as she wanted Iraq demolished, Gaza starved and the rest cowed. The swap agreement undermined all the logic behind the sanctions. All the plotting of Israeli lobbyists in the US and Europe was wiped out in an instant. Indeed, as the Muslims say: they plot, but Allah plots better.
Israel received the news of the Turkey-Brazil-Iran agreement as a heavy blow. “We were defeated by the crafty Turks and Iranians,” read the headlines of Israeli newspapers. Not so fast. The US State Department minimized the damage, effectively asking: “Who cares what these lowlifes agree about? If we have decided to bomb somebody, bomb we shall. We shall never allow facts to confuse us.” Thomas Friedman in the NYT was disappointed why “a Holocaust-denying thug” is allowed to live.
Brazenly disregarding the agreement, the Security Council approved the sanctions on June, 9. Moscow and Beijing were bribed or blackmailed to agree. China preferred to play ball in order to avoid confrontation over North Korea. The story of sunken South Korean ship provided a pretext for an attack on North Korea, and such an attack could cause much damage to China. The Chinese are also vulnerable to the Western meddling in Xinjiang and Tibet.
The Russians have received some precious gifts: Ukraine returned into Russia’s fold, Georgia was marginalised, the new nuclear arms treaty was better to Russia than anything they could expect. At the same time, Moscow suffered a severe terrorist attack reminding the Russians of their enemies’ ability to seed trouble. Still, Turkey voted against the sanctions, proving its new regional role as a reliable new pivot for the Middle East.
The conflict between Turkey and Israel did not start with the Iran swap: it began earlier, in January 2010, when the Israeli deputy Foreign Minister Dani Ayalon invited Turkish ambassador and publicly humiliated him. In Oriental fashion, Ambassador Chelikkol was offered to take seat in a sofa lower the Ayalon’s armchair. Ayalon refused to shake hands with the ambassador and told journalists in Hebrew while cameras were rolling: “We would like to show that he takes lower seat and there is only one Israeli flag on the table”.
Or perhaps the conflict began a year earlier, in January 2009, when the Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Erdogan walked off the stage at the World Economic Forum in Davos. Erdogan was annoyed by an attempt of a western moderator to stop his response to the Israeli president Shimon Peres who justified mass killings in Gaza.
Or perhaps it started in September 2007 when the Israeli planes flew over Turkey to bomb Syria without as much as ‘by your leave’.
Perhaps it was even earlier, when Turkey began to assert its independence by discarding its century-old and worn ideology of Kemalism. Secular nationalism of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was a trap for the former Empire. Brutish Kemalist Turkey was necessarily a member of NATO, an enemy to Arabs and Iranians, a docile client of the US, a loyal ally of Israel and a persecutor of Kurds.
Now is the time to thank the Europeans for doing their bit to reform Turkey. In endless negotiations with Turkey, the European Union demanded to release the Army’s iron grip on power. Without this gentle prompting from Europe, Turkey would be still ruled by a Zionist general or by a Zionist generals’ appointee. With people being free from military rule, the Turks had ended their violent secularism and regained peace with Islam and with their neighbours.
I visited Turkey last Christmas, and had met with the activists who were about to depart for Gaza. Turkey is doing well: no economic crisis, steady growth, peace with the Kurds, a brave attempt to make peace with Armenians, and a perfect balance of religion and freedom. Who wants may go to a beautifully restored Ottoman mosque and pray, who wants may go to a café and drink very good Turkish wine. Girls are forced neither to shed their scarves nor to cover their arms.
“We lost Turkey”, said Robert Gates, the US Secretary of Defence, and blamed the European Union for refusing to accept Turkey. But we have to thank the Europeans for this refusal. We do not want Turkey in the EU; we need Turkey for ourselves, for the region.
There is a great new plan of creating a Middle East Union as a regional equivalent of the European Union. This is the right place for Turkey, in the head of this new formation. In a way, it will be restoration of the Ottoman Empire: to the same extent the European Union is a restoration of Charlemagne’s Empire. The difference is that Europe was fragmented for centuries, while our region was united until 1917. Even if full political union may be a far-away perspective, this is good to start moving towards this goal.
There are already free trade treaties between Turkey and its Arab neighbours; the spiritual dimension is there, for Istanbul was the last seat of the Caliphate. Now Turkey may establish a regional International Court to deal with regional problems, among others, with Zionist excesses. Europe is still not free from Zionist control and that is why the International Court of Justice and International Criminal Court in The Hague are unsuitable places to try Zionist criminals. Moreover, their present location reminds of Eurocentric world of yesterday. A regional Court may also convincingly deal with war criminals in occupied Iraq and other Middle Eastern countries. Great lawyers like Richard Falk and Judge Goldstone could be invited to seat in it.
Establishment of the International Court (East) would be a serious and realistic step towards further decolonization of the region and its future unification in a Middle East Union.