"Many of us believe that wrongs aren't wrong if it's done by nice people like ourselves."
~ Author Unknown.
~ Author Unknown.
Mmm hmmm . . . AKP parliamentary deputies are "outraged" and "horrified" about Israel's ongoing bombing of Gaza. Speaker of the TBMM, Köksal Toptan said:
"I should also state that we have been horrified to hear statements that these kinds of attacks will continue. That's why attacks should be immediately halted, and the entire world, particularly the UN Security Council, should find a clear and quick path toward making this happen."
Oh, yeah, well naturally he'd say that since Turkey is a temporary member of the UN National Security Council.
AKP and MHP parliamentarians are also withdrawing from the TBMM's Turkish-Israeli friendship group because they are suddenly concerned about shaking "bloody hands". That's a good one. Even richer is Erdoğan's concern that Israeli actions constitute a "crime against humanity"--this from the same son of a bitch who gave the green light for TSK to shoot Kurdish women and children indiscriminately during the Amed Serhildan, claimed that assimilation was a "crime against humanity" during a visit to Germany, and did absolutely nothing while his security forces beat Kurdish women and children during Newroz earlier this year.
In an opinion piece titled, "The aircraft that bomb Gaza train in Konya" Nuh Gönültaş at Bugün, reports that the Turkish public is saying Hitler was justified . At the end of the piece, Gönültaş asks:
"What does it mean for Turkey to make [military] deals with Israel and then oppose Israel for the things it's doing to Palestinians?"
Oooohh . . . Gönültaş hits the bullseye. The Israeli air force has been training at Konya since 2001, but the Turkish-Israeli military alliance goes back to the mid-1990s when the Clean Break Strategy was first proposed to the Netanyahu government by the American neocons. By 1996, the first cooperative military moves were made between Israel and Turkey:
The first agreement on military cooperation was signed, amid the utmost secrecy, on 23 February, 1996, in Tel Aviv by Deputy Chief of the General Staff Çevik Bir and the leadership of the Israeli Defense Ministry. For the first time in the history of relations between the two countries, it provided for interaction of their armed forces in implementing military training programs; joint land, naval, and air maneuvers; creation of a joint group on military-strategic studies; training flights by Turkish aircraft in the Israeli air space and Israeli aircraft in the Turkish air space; briefing of Turkish pilots; and intelligence sharing, especially in combating terrorism (in particular, joint monitoring on the borders with Syria, Iran, and Iraq). Furthermore, Israel pledged to help Turkey in modernizing and beefing up its borders with these three countries to protect it against Kurdish insurgents.
Robert Fisk has more:
Professor Efraim Inbar, director of the Begin-Sadat Centre for strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University in Israel, first revealed the extent of Turkish-Israeli co-operation in a remarkable - but largely unpublicised - lecture at the Woodrow Wilson Centre in Washington five months ago. He spoke only vaguely of the joint listening posts on the Syrian, Iraqi and Iranian borders but described them as "an important facet of our intelligence gathering capability". There was also, Professor Inbar added, "co-operation on terror".
The alliance was a Turkish idea, initiated in 1997 when the Turkish air force commander arrived without warning to see the Israeli ambassador in Ankara with the words - according to Professor Inbar - "we want to invite the Israeli chief of the air force to come to Turkey to visit". It wasn't all plain sailing. When the Turkish navy paid its first official visit to the Israeli port of Haifa last year, the Israelis had not bothered to send a naval representative to meet it; and Turkish officers were astounded when the Israeli harbourmaster refused to let their ships into port unless they agreed to pay harbour dues.
But Israeli planes are now training in Turkey, using Turkish bombing ranges, just as Turkish pilots are now flying in the skies over Israel. The Americans chair a regular meeting of Turkish and Israeli intelligence officers in Tel Aviv and on at least one occasion last year a Jordanian officer was also present. If Jordan's new King Abdullah was to upgrade this relationship, it would further isolate Syria. Mr Netanyahu's government has long believed - wrongly - that President Assad can be blackmailed into making peace without handing back the occupied Golan Heights if Syria was sufficiently intimidated.
And he goes on to explain more about the realities of the Israeli-Turkish relationship:
Back in 1982, Turkey condemned Israel's invasion of Lebanon as aggression until Israel furnished Turkey with intelligence files on the Armenian ASALA extremist group. Much to Turkey's delight, Mr Ocalan's PKK are always referred to by the Israelis as "terrorists"; Israel has expressed sympathy for Iraqi Kurds - but never for the millions of Kurds who live under Turkish military oppression. Israel supports only a limited form of autonomy for the Kurds of Iraq; which is not surprising since that is precisely the limited freedoms it wishes to give the Palestinians.
Now it's ironic that Erdoğan's government, which plays the Eternal Victim so well in order to drum up international support for it's severe repression of Kurds via the Big Lie which labels the Kurds of Turkish-occupied Kurdistan and their only defenders, the PKK, as "terrorists" because Erdoğan's government paid host to HAMAS' leadership in Ankara in early 2006. It's ironic because HAMAS is clearly a member of that exclusive club known as The List. Yes, it's ironic because it's the same List that Turkey always refers to in its 30-year-long losing war against Kurdish freedom fighters.
Well, it's either irony or hypocrisy and I guess it doesn't matter too much that HAMAS was elected by the Palestinians because we all know that democracy itself is merely a media event. A fantasy. Another Big Lie.
Of course, Turkish concern for Gaza is, like most things in Turkey: a show. Money is going to continue to pass under the table. Turkey and Israel will continue their joint military training and cooperation because they are integral components of the US military-industrial-congressional complex. So there's nothing to see here, folks. Move along, move along.
Meanwhile, the Turkish air force continues to bomb civilian areas of South Kurdistan, thus creating the de facto buffer zone for which both the paşas and the AKP so desperately lust--and screw Iraqi territorial sovereignty.