Turkey: Success Story Turned to
By Eric Margolis at information clearing House
- Turkey, once
a pillar of Mideast stability, looks increasingly like a
slow-motion truck crash. What makes this crisis so
tragic is that not very long ago Turkey was entering a
new age of social harmony and economic development.
Today, both are up in smoke as this week’s bloody
bombing in Ankara that killed 102 people showed.
America’s ham-handed policies in the Mideast have set
the entire region ablaze from Syria to South Sudan and
Libya. Turkey sits right on top of the huge mess, licked
by the flames of nationalist and political
conflagrations and now beset by 2 million Syrian
refugees.(Obligated to follow American policies set by the USA....as Erdogan was brought into power by the USA)
As Saddam Hussein predicted, George W. Bush’s invasions
of Afghanistan and Iraq opened the gates of hell ( for the local inhabitants mostly).
Attempts by Washington to overthrow Syria’s Alawite
regime – a natural US ally (Empires like minorities in other countries...Persia Jews...British in India Sikhs and Parsee..Studiously participated in the black sites rendition program of the CIA........and at times helped the USA kill Hezbollah commanders in Lebanon and Syria. One wonders loudly how 3 Iranian generals died in the space of a few days.....whilst in Syria to help the Assad regime...the 4th Iranian general thus far........slippery Arab snakes come to mind)- have destroyed large parts
of that once lovely multi-ethnic nation and produced the worst human
disaster since the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in
the late 1940’s and 1967.
Washington’s bull-in-a-China-shop behavior in the
fragile Mideast came just as the Turkish government of
Recep Erdogan had
1. presided over a decade of stunning
economic growth for Turkey ($1.6 trillion PPP GDP...15th largest in the world..2015),
2. pushed the intrusive armed
forces back to their barracks,
3. and achieved friendly
relations with neighbors.
4. No Turkish leader in modern
history had achieved so much.
5. Equally important, the Erdogan
government was on the verge of making a final
accommodation with Turkey’s always restive Kurds – up to
20% of the population of 75 million – that would have
recognized many new rights of the “people of the
This was a huge achievement.
the bloody guerilla war on eastern Anatolia between
Turkey’s police and armed forces, and tough Kurdish
guerillas of the Marxist-Stalinist PKK movement. By
1990, some 40,000 had died in the fighting that showed
no hope of resolution.
Thanks to patient diplomacy and
difficult concessions, PM Erdogan’s Islamist –Lite AK
Party managed to reach tentative peace accords with the
PKK and its jailed leader, Abdullah Ocalan in spite of
fierce resistance from Turkey’s generals, violent
semi-fascist nationalist groups and equally dangerous
Peace with the Kurds went down the
drain when the US intensified the war in Syria and began
openly arming and financing Syria’s and Iraq’s Kurds.
Various Kurdish groups became involved in the Syria
fighting against the Assad regime in Damascus and
against the Islamic State – which had been created by
Saudi Arabia and the CIA to attack Shia regimes.
struck back, and the war with the Kurds resumed. A
decade of patient work kaput.
Turkey’s prime minister – and now
president – Erdogan had led his nation since 2003 with
hardly a misstep. Then came two disastrous decisions.
First, Erdogan dared criticize Israel for its brutal
treatment of Palestinians and killing of nine Turks on a
naval rescue mission to Gaza. America’s media, led by
the pro-Israel Wall Street Journal, New York Times and
Fox News have made Erdogan a prime target for savage
Second, for murky reasons, Erdogan
developed a hatred for Syria’s leader, Bashar Assad, and
allowed Turkey to serve as a conduit and primary supply
base for all sorts of anti-Assad rebels, most notably
the so-called Islamic State. Most Turks were opposed to
getting involved in the Syrian quagmire. Doing so
unleashed the Kurdish genii and alienated neighbor
Turkey’s blunder into the Syrian War
has enraged the restive military, which has long sought
to oust Erdogan and return the nation to Ataturkism, the
far-right political creed of Turkey’s anti-Muslim
oligarchs, urban and academic elite. Now, Turkey’s long
repressed violent leftists are stirring trouble in the
cities. Fear is growing that Turkey might return to its
pre-Erdogan days of bombings, street violence, and
assassinations – all against a background of
hyperinflation, soaring unemployment and hostile
relations with its neighbors.
One hears rumbles of a Turkish
conflict with Armenia over its conflict with Turkish
ally, Azerbaijan. Greece is nervous and moving closer
to Israel. Oil and gas finds in the eastern
Mediterranean are heightening tensions.