"Hypocrisy can afford to be magnificent in its promises, for never intending to go beyond promise, it costs nothing."
~ Edmund Burke.
~ Edmund Burke.
Debkafile doesn't have a whole lot of credibility as far as I'm concerned but this is interesting because it's so much in character for Katil Erdoğan:
Monday, Jan. 5, Erdogan outdid himself in vituperation when he accused Israel of "perpetrating inhuman actions which would bring it to self-destruction. Allah will sooner or later punish those who transgress the rights of innocents," he said.
It's so much in character for Katil Erdoğan because it reaches the stratosphere as far as hypocrisy goes, even though Israel apologized for having embarrassed its stalwart ally. I doubt very much, though, that Erdoğan will "freeze the long-standing military ties between the US's foremost defense allies in the Middle East" because there's simply too much at stake. Too much money, that is. It was only one short month ago that Turkey took possession of it's new, highly-coveted Israeli military hardware, the Heron:
December 27, 2008: Israel Aircraft Industries has recently delivered Turkey the first two Heron UAVs, part of a package worth $183 million signed between Turkey and Israel in 2005. The aircraft are deployed at the Batman military base in Southeast Turkey. Israel is expected to deliver the remaining 8 Herons in the upcoming months. The package includes 10 IAI Heron UAVs, operated by ground control systems developed by Elbit Systems.
Turkey steps up reconnaissance operations of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles monitoring suspected Kurdish resistance in Southeastern Turkey and Northeast Iraq
Another Heron delivered to Turkey earlier this year was crashed in July 2008 while on a mission over Southeastern Turkey. Israel provided turkey with a surplus Searcher type UAV to augment its operations, but this UAV has also been lost. Turkey has also leased UAV services of three Aerostar tactical UAVs built by Aeronautics defense Systems, to augment its reconnaissance activities monitoring PKK activities in Southeastern Turkey and Kurdistan.
Not that it looks like the paşas know how to operate the new Herons as well as they know how to operate a golf ball and I guess that's why they've had Israelis operating the Herons for them--a piece of intel that even appeared in Haaretz.
Of course, it's not enough just to have unmanned aerial vehicles but now the paşas want armed unmanned aerial vehicles. Zaman reports that the paşas may spurn the American-made Predator in favor of the Israeli-made Harpy:
In a related development, Today's Zaman learned that Turkey may have now shifted its interest from US-made Predator UAVs, which can be configured into armed UAVs, to Israeli-made armed Harpy2 UAVs.
"Turkey needs at least one armed UAV," said a local industry source.
Despite an earlier acknowledgement by a Turkish commander that Ankara plans to buy a General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Predator UAV, the SSM is understood to have been delaying its official proposal to the US company for the purchase of a Predator, said the same source.
Turkish Land Forces Commander Gen. Isik Kosaner acknowledged at a press conference on Oct. 27 that Turkey plans to buy a US-made UAV, noting that one Predator UAV is currently at the disposal of the Turkish military and has been gathering intelligence on the activities of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), mostly in northern Iraq.
If purchased, the US has pledged to supply Turkey with the system within 18 months.
However, Turkey shifted its focus to the Israeli Harpy after Turkish Defense Minister Vecdi Gönül was introduced an armed UAV during his visit to Israel in late October. That development may have influenced Turkey to go to Israel for the purchase of an armed UAV, said a Turkish defense industry source.
Does anyone really believe Katil Erdoğan is going to say "No" to the paşas? Does anyone really believe the paşas are only going to use armed drones on "military" targets? Sure, just like the US only uses drones on "military" targets? Think again.
Turkey is still trying to bring the Gaza situation to the UN Security Council:
In a swift reaction to Israel’s ground incursion into Gaza, the Turkish capital has harshly condemned Israel’s move, which it said was “unacceptable,” while calling on the UN Security Council to take immediate steps to bring the situation under control.
What's so funny about this is that it was in 2006, shortly after Israel's failed "incursion" into Lebanon, that Turkey became hot to follow the Israeli example in order to invade South Kurdistan--in another failed "incursion", I might add. From AsiaTimes:
This vividly reminds one of a similar blunder in the summer of 2006, when US officials backed Israel's cross-border incursions into southern Lebanon with the stated aim of "neutralizing" a terrorist organization (Hezbollah) and destroying its "organizational infrastructure".
The vocabulary used in both occasions, and the reactions solicited from Washington, are so strikingly similar that, inevitably, they invite comparisons between Israel's ultimately futile misadventure in Lebanon and Turkey's operation that is already a week long. Despite the US's prodding to "keep it short", it may end up approximating Israel's 33-day campaign against Hezbollah. This is particularly so since the Turkish army has to endure harsh winter conditions in addition to a resilient foe of about 3,000 or so PKK fighters.
In both cases, Israeli and Turkish leaders have tried to elicit world sympathy by stressing their "rightful cause", and in the expressions of "understanding" by both the US and the European Union seen at the beginning of both conflicts, one can detect the undercurrents of a failed Western policy that simply does not learn from history.
There are important differences between the two cases, but the similarities are unmistakable. This is particularly so in the area of asymmetrical warfare and the not-so-declared motives of the invading armies, ie, in Lebanon for Israel to fight a proxy war with Iran and in Iraq for Turkey to undermine the Kurdish path toward greater autonomy and, perhaps, eventual independence.
Zaman is also crying over its claim that Israel has been using cluster bombs in Gaza. It didn't do that when Turkey carpeted civilian areas in South Kurdistan with cluster bombs in October 2007.
Besides, even as far back as nine years ago, it was widely recognized that there was more than just a military relationship between Israel and Turkey, that there were economic ties like free trade zones, tourist resorts populated by Israeli visitors (and benefiting TSK), water agreements, and, perhaps most importantly, support for Turkey from the Israel lobby in the US. All of this in spite of the Israeli-Turkish relationship as a destabilizing factor in the Middle East.
I'm also completely amazed that global corporate media lapdogs have failed, in recent days, to point out the US role in maintaining destabilization, something David Rose of Vanity Fair pointed out last April. The only recent article on that can be found at Alternet.
No, I don't believe that Turkey is going to freeze its relationship with Israel, militarily or otherwise, no matter what Debkafile says. Even Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Çiçek will back me over Katil Erdoğan over that:
Turkish government spokesman and Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Çiçek signaled during a news conference on Monday that Ankara was not considering retaliation against Israel through suspending the countries' military relationship or canceling a recent project agreement signed with Israel.
Çiçek's statement came in response to a reporter's question about whether Ankara would cancel the recent arms deal with Israel -- a reflection of heightened expectations among the Turkish public that Turkey should cancel or suspend military cooperation with Israel as a means of deterring Israel from attacking Gaza.
The "recent arms deal with Israel" referred to here is the $141 million contract awarded to Israeli Aerospace Industries (the same people that brought you the Heron) for "comprehensive intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance applications" for the Turkish air force. These systems will help Turkey to continue its bombing of North and South Kurdistan. Further cooperation will ensure that Turkey benefits from the military lessons learned by the IDF in the current Gaza campaign.
After all, money, influence, and power speak a helluva lot louder than Kerdoğan.