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Sunday, October 18, 2009

A prediction come true: Turkey lost to Islamists

Professor William Jacobson finds himself in the bittersweet position of having a prediction come true.
On January 31, 2009, I wrote that Turkey Looking Like The Next Iran:
My prediction: Turkey is the next Iran, unless Obama stops blaming the U.S. for Islamist aggression and gives support to Turkey's secular institutions, including the Turkish army. Jimmy Carter tried the blame America first tactic; it didn't win us any friends and led to 30 years of tyranny and human rights abuses in Iran. Don't repeat the same mistake in Turkey.
One commenter was indignant, insisting that the West risked pushing the Turks into Iranian arms:
Their societal structure is far from that of Iran but if we cave in to our primal instinct of bashing the Turks for their sympathy towards their Muslim brothers, we risk alienating them completely and throw them to extremism.
I noted at the time that all the warning signs of a creeping Islamist takeover were present, and that if nothing was done, Turkey would be the next Iran. Much like Hugo Chavez's step-by-step denigration of opposition and freedom, the Islamists in Turkey were destroying the pro-Western secular foundation of the country.
Unfortunately, as Caroline Glick pointed out over the weekend, Jacobson's prediction was on target. The United States, Europe and Israel all should have seen it coming and missed.
TURKEY'S BREAK with the West; its decisive rupture with Israel and its opposition to the US in Iraq and Iran was predictable. Militant Islam of the AKP variety has been enjoying growing popularity and support throughout Turkey for many years. The endemic corruption of Turkey's traditional secular leaders increased the Islamists' popularity. Given this domestic Turkish reality, it is possible that Erdogan and his fellow Islamists' rise to power was simply a matter of time.

But even if the AKP's rise to power was eminently predictable, its ability to consolidate its control over just about every organ of governance in Turkey as well as what was once a thriving free press, and change completely Turkey's strategic posture in just seven years was far from inevitable. For these accomplishments the AKP owes a debt of gratitude to both the Bush and Obama administrations, as well as to the EU.

Read both of them. It's time to stop fooling ourselves that Turkey is a western ally or an Israeli ally. Those days are gone.


At 3:25 PM, Blogger Menorah said...

In Christian prophecy Turkey is on of the nations that will invade Israel in the end-times.

At 4:16 PM, Blogger Chrysler 300M said...

there is enough opposition against having this islamic and murderous dictatorship enter the EU.
Ukraine, Kroatia and Serbia deserve earliert membership.

At 4:29 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Israel should wake up and realize states have only interests and not alliances. Israel needs to adjust its interests accordingly. It can take an example from Turkey and respond in kind.


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