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Sultan Erdogan’s Turkey Should Be Tossed From NATO

ISTANBUL – A couple weeks ago I visited Turkey’s largest city, cosmopolitan Istanbul. Pictures of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promoting his party’s candidate for mayor, former prime minister Binali Yildirim, dominated the cityscape and vastly outnumbered those for Ekrem Imamoglu, the opposition Republican People’s Party’s standard-bearer. Few observers thought the latter had much of a chance. Yet after the polls closed on Sunday, Imamoglu had narrowly triumphed.

Assuming the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) does not steal the election—it’s contesting the result and controls most levers of power—the opposition will have won mayoralties in five of the country’s six most populous cities, including the capital of Ankara. The AKP and related parties have ruled Istanbul and Ankara since 1994, making the losses doubly painful. The opposition also made significant gains at the provincial level. The AKP still picked up a plurality of votes and along with its nationalist coalition partner secured a bare national majority of 51.6 percent. However, Erdogan, seemingly on his way to being a modern sultan, no longer seems invincible.

His greatest weakness today was once his strongest advantage: the economy. Turkey has fallen into a recession; per capita GDP has dropped to the level of a dozen years ago. Unemployment has surged to the highest level in nine years. Inflation hit 20 percent, while last year the Turkish lira’s value fell 28 percent.

The opposition’s revival is good for the people of Turkey, who are suffering under Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian rule, as well as for Western governments, which should no longer view Ankara as a friend and ally. In fact, the transatlantic alliance should suspend or terminate Turkey’s membership in NATO.

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The Republic of Turkey grew out of World War I and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was an Ottoman military officer turned revolutionary leader who was instrumental in founding the new Turkish government. He created an authoritarian, secular state that allied with the West during the Cold War. Behind its democratic façade was a military-nationalist deep state. The armed forces occasionally ousted elected leaders, most recently in a “postmodern” coup in 1997, which forced the resignation of an Islamist prime minister.

The following year, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, then mayor of Istanbul, was ousted from office and jailed for reciting an Islamist poem. In 2001, he cofounded the AKP, which won the 2002 election with support from liberals seeking to end the repressive Kemalist regime. Once in office, he adeptly forced the military out of politics.

However, within a decade, Erdogan was moving in an authoritarian and Islamist direction, targeting businessmen backing the opposition, seizing control of independent media, and punishing critics, including journalists, academics, and even schoolchildren. This gave life to the report that as mayor he had declared: “Democracy is like a streetcar. When you come to your stop, you get off.” The attempted coup in 2016 became his Reichstag fire—in fact, some suspected, without proof, that he engineered the operation. It gave him an excuse to purge anyone with the slightest (and often imagined) connection to the aged Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, who he improbably blamed for the attempted putsch.

Some 80,000 people, including opposition politicians and journalists, have been jailed; the government actually paroled criminals to make room for political prisoners. Torture and other abuse continue, though Amnesty International reports that it is no longer as common as in the immediate aftermath of the coup. In excess of 160,000 Turks have been forced from their jobs, public and private.

The government removed 95 municipal, provincial, and district officials of the Kurdish People’s Democratic Party, replacing them with appointive “trustees.” Human Rights Watch notes, “Turkey remained the world leader in jailing journalists. An estimated 175 journalists and media workers are in pretrial detention or serving sentences for terrorism offenses at time of writing. Hundreds more are on trial but at liberty.”

Turkish agents kidnapped alleged enemies abroad. The regime imprisoned foreigners, such as the American pastor Andrew Brunson, who was later released under U.S. pressure, and NASA scientist Serkan Golge, on dubious evidence. Ankara shut down thousands of schools and foundations, and scores of media enterprises, publishing houses, universities, and trade unions. The regime displayed its brutal character in 2017 when during a state visit to Washington, Erdogan’s bodyguards beat up peaceful American protestors.

Erdogan has engineered a shift from a parliamentary system to a strong presidency, filled by him. Freedom House rates Turkey as “not free,” near the bottom in civil liberties. Explains FH: “The government’s authoritarian nature has been fully consolidated since a 2016 coup attempt triggered a more dramatic crackdown on perceived opponents of the leadership.” Amnesty International agrees: “Dissent was ruthlessly suppressed, with journalists, political activists and human rights defenders among those targeted.”

Most freedoms have been curtailed, many dramatically so. Observes FH: “While not every utterance that is critical of the government will be punished, the arbitrariness of prosecutions, which often result in pretrial detention and carry the risk of lengthy prisons terms, is increasingly creating an atmosphere of self-censorship.” Indeed, AI notes, “Thousands of criminal prosecutions were brought, including under laws prohibiting defamation and on trumped-up terrorism-related charges, based on people’s peaceful exercise of their right to freedom of expression.”

The fact that elections are still held does not mean that Turkey is a functioning democracy. Freedom House says that last year’s “elections were marred by a number of flaws, including misuse of state resources by the ruling party to gain an electoral advantage, as well as intimidation of and attacks on the” opposition. Similarly, reports Human Rights Watch, “The June 2018 election campaign took place under a state of emergency imposed after the July 2016 attempted military coup and in a climate of media censorship and repression of perceived government enemies and critics that persisted throughout the year, with many journalists as well as parliamentarians and the presidential candidate from the pro-Kurdish opposition in jail.”

Moreover, Ankara’s foreign policy has drifted away from America’s and Europe’s. Turkey initially allowed the Islamic State to operate within its borders against the Assad government and later intervened militarily in Syria to target America’s Kurdish allies. Erdogan’s son allegedly enriched himself selling ISIS-supplied oil.

The Erdogan government nearly broke with Moscow after shooting down a Russian aircraft in Syria, but soon reversed course to stage a dramatic rapprochement. Thereafter, Erdogan cooperated with Russia and Iran in Syria, effectively abandoning his demand for Bashar al-Assad’s ouster. Turkey also purchased a Russian S-400 missile air defense system, despite Washington’s threats to halt the continued sales of F-35 aircraft in response.

Turkey’s relations with Israel have sharply deteriorated. Ankara violated U.S. sanctions on Iran and increased commercial ties with Venezuela’s government, also under sanctions. In his latest political campaign, Erdogan used the mosque attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand, to advance his Islamist and nationalist message.

On Tuesday, a “Senior State Department Official” briefed the press [1] and insisted that “Turkey has been and remains an important NATO ally, an important partner to the United States. Our relationship is not being defined by the single issue of the S-400.” (Is there any defense dependent on earth that is not said to be an “important partner” of America?) However, the SSDO did allow that “the S-400 is a deeply problematic issue for the United States, and we have made that clear to Turkey.” Without result so far, alas.

Increasingly, Ankara is no friend to America or the West. In fact, Turkey would not be invited to join the alliance today. Its international objectives are too divergent and its domestic institutions are too authoritarian. Complained Andrew Dawson, head of the Council of Europe election observer mission, “I am afraid we are not fully convinced that Turkey currently has the free and fair electoral environment which is necessary for genuinely democratic elections in line with European values and principles.” In 1952, when Ankara joined, it was little more democratic than today. But Turkey was committed to containing the Soviet Union, so the other members were willing to overlook its domestic failings. There is no reason to make similar allowances now.

Washington has little ability to influence politics in Turkey. However, the latest vote offers an important reminder that Erdogan will not rule forever. My Cato Institute colleague Mustafa Akyol notes that “the municipal election results in Turkey over the weekend suggest that there is still some hope for democratic change there—that despite a descent into authoritarianism, ballots still count.” The population’s deep-seated anti-Americanism will be harder to eliminate; for that, U.S. foreign policy needs to change. Moreover, any elected government is likely to pursue independent policies inconsistent with U.S. priorities. Best for Washington to loosen its ties with Turkey.

Rather than desperately attempting to hold Ankara in NATO, the allies should begin considering how to ease Turkey out. There will still be issues where we need to cooperate with Ankara. However, Washington should stop making policy based on illusions of friendship with a government seeking to revive the Ottoman Empire. Turkey today is neither friend nor ally. The U.S. should treat it accordingly.

Doug Bandow is a senior fellow at the Cato Institute. A former special assistant to President Ronald Reagan, he is author of Foreign Follies: America’s New Global Empire.

33 Comments (Open | Close)

33 Comments To "Sultan Erdogan’s Turkey Should Be Tossed From NATO"

#1 Comment By Minnesota Mary On April 3, 2019 @ 9:46 pm

“Rather than desperately attempting to hold Ankara in NATO, the allies should begin considering how to ease Turkey out.”

Wrong. NATO needs to be disbanded.

#2 Comment By Stephen J. On April 3, 2019 @ 10:44 pm

The writer states: “In fact, the transatlantic alliance should suspend or terminate Turkey’s membership in NATO.”
————
That statement may well be well meaning. Unfortunately, there is reported evidence that this gang of NATO members, including Turkey are also helping the terrorists they are supposed to be fighting. See links below.

“Is NATO a Gang of Turkeys”?


“… Turkey has played a leading role in fomenting the unrest in Syria since the very beginning of the uprising against the rule of Bashar al-Assad in 2011. Turkey has aided, abetted, and funded ISIS by keeping its southern border open with Syria, allowing radical jihadists from Europe to cross back and forth from ISIS-controlled territory, thereby enabling them to return to Europe to plot and execute such attacks as were recently carried out in the French capital.”- James Carden, The Nation. November 24, 2015.
[2]

There is something seriously wrong when NATO an organization funded with massive amounts of taxpayer dollars continues to support not only Turkey but other supposed “allies” that are reportedly up to their dirty necks in funding, training and arming terrorism.
[read more at links below]
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“Are Some NATO and G20 Members Funding, Arming and Training Terrorists”?

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“The Numerous Affiliated Terrorists Organization (NATO)”

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And finally:
December 27, 2018
“Will The War Criminals Be Brought To Justice in 2019? Or Is Justice Dead and Buried”?

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#3 Comment By Ali On April 3, 2019 @ 10:47 pm

Translation, Turkey is not a secular liberal LGBT supporting western Puppet so it should be kicked out of nato.
As for this: ‘Moreover, Ankara’s foreign policy has drifted away from America’s and Europe’s. Turkey initially allowed the Islamic State to operate within its borders against the Assad government and later intervened militarily in Syria to target America’s Kurdish allies. Erdogan’s son allegedly enriched himself selling ISIS-supplied oil‘ that sounds just like American and European policy in Syria to me.
And Turkey cooperating with Russia and Iran?
How dare they, they haven’t been given the green light by Uncle Sam to do that, what do they think they are, an independent country.

#4 Comment By charles cosimano On April 3, 2019 @ 11:10 pm

It is not simple. It has been almost 40 years since I studied the NATO treaty but I don’t think there actually is a provision in it for a state either leaving or being removed.

The treaty was crafted to allow states parties to invade and overthrow a government that become Communist. Allowing the state to withdraw would have defeated that purpose so easing out may not be an option at all.

#5 Comment By Fayez Abedaziz On April 4, 2019 @ 1:40 am

Exactly what interest and what business is it of yours, the author of this piece, that goes nowhere?
And, what business is it of the gung-ho weirdos running NATO and the U.S. military?
And, why is there a NATO?
Is this 1950?
1950 when Russia was a few years from the huge devastation of the invasion by the Wermacht?
1950 and on, Russia was hardly in position or intent to invade any part of so-called western Europe.
NATO a military alliance that years later goes thousands of miles away to commit war crimes against the people of the Middle East, North Africa and more?
It’s NATO that should be disbanded and the leaders of NATO, from the late 90’s to now, charged with crimes against humanity.
And, you, the author don’t like the Turkish government? You care about the Turkish people?
Didn’t think so.
Let Turkey go as an ally? An ally for what, to be dictated to? European leaders are, unlike America’s, are being very, very tight lipped and diplomatic toward America’s terrible foreign policy, but they are really p’d off.
Except for the weasels and backward fools that run Britain. Sorry Scotland and Ireland you gotta put up with that, I know.
Turkey, like Russia,Venezuela,and oh, the China Sea, are, surprise, not American provinces.
I laugh when American politicians and media talkers and writers talk about a government not being, well, so-called ‘democratic’ or having ‘free elections.’ Because:
they don’t give a rat’s whatever about the people in that nation.
How about this-the U.S. having free elections for a change instead of offices bought with bribe money. That’s right, look how much and from where Hillary and ignorant Trumps millions in campaign money came from. Dig that and let us know all you ‘concerned’ citizens. I’m laughing again, it’s all a continuing joke…

#6 Comment By Stephen J. On April 4, 2019 @ 6:07 am

Article of interest at link below.
———————
NATO Turns 70
JAMES CARDEN MARCH 28, 2019

Puzzlingly, NATO is often to be said to be a vehicle for “Western values.” In March, NATO’s deputy secretary general, the former high-ranking State Department official Rose Gottemoeller, declared that NATO “promotes the shared values of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law.” Likewise, Stoltenberg, at a recent speech to the German Marshall Fund in Brussels averred that NATO has “helped spread freedom and democracy and human rights…. we must continue to work hard every day to uphold those values.”
But what are those values exactly? Turkey, currently governed by an Islamist authoritarian who has tacitly supported and funded ISIS, has been a member since 1952….
[read more at link below]

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#7 Comment By Oscar Peterson On April 4, 2019 @ 8:52 am

Uh, let’s end our security arrangement with Judeosupremacist Israel before we try to expel Turkey from NATO.

“Moreover, Ankara’s foreign policy has drifted away from America’s and Europe’s. Turkey initially allowed the Islamic State to operate within its borders against the Assad government and later intervened militarily in Syria to target America’s Kurdish allies.”

How does supporting jihadists constitute a drift away from the US? We supported Jihadists throughout the anti-Assad war. Only defeat has forced a modification to both Turkish and US policy towards Syria. And the Syrian Kurds are our allies mostly because they are seen by our pro-Israel machers/lobbyists and media Likudniks as useful to Israel’s regional strategy.

It would be nice if this piece included at least a little strategic analysis alongside all the moralizing. I agree that Erdogan has become increasingly authoritarian, but there are significant costs to expelling Turkey from NATO, if that’s even feasible, since I don’t believe there is an expulsion mechanism in the charter. What are the costs and benefits of tossing Turkey out of the alliance?

Let’s consider that for a moment.

#8 Comment By Our To Do List On April 4, 2019 @ 9:38 am

This is an odd suggestion, especially coming from this magazine. If the US tries to kick Turkey out of NATO, it will be of a piece with the rest of Trump’s stupid Israel First / America Last foreign policy. I can see disbanding NATO entirely, and I can see cutting loose the Mideast parasites we currently support (Saudi Arabia, Israel, Egypt, Afghanistan), but Turkey actually serves some vital US security interests at the moment (housing millions of Mideast refugees, controlling access to the Black Sea), and squeezing it out of NATO would seem not just pointless but self-destructive. But that assumes a sane US foreign policy, which we don’t have at the moment. So maybe you’ll get your wish.

#9 Comment By SteveK9 On April 4, 2019 @ 11:31 am

Plenty of other comments already about the fact that NATO has no useful purpose now. And, whether we ‘push’ them out or not, there is going to be closer and closer coordination, if not an outright alliance, between Russia, Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria. Essentialy ‘kicking out’ the US. Erdogan may have had dreams of a new empire, but Russia put paid to that idea. Now I think he realizes he needs peace and good economic relations with as many countries as he can manage.

#10 Comment By Stephen J. On April 4, 2019 @ 12:04 pm

“NATO” is meeting in Washington. I believe this would be a good time, based on the evidence available of war crimes and crimes against humanity, that many of these people and their sycophants need to be arrested.

“Arrest Them”

Arrest all those responsible for the plight of the Refugees
These people are in camps, or drowning in unfriendly seas
And when these unwanted, reach “safety,” or a foreign land
They are treated like garbage and the rulers want them banned

Arrest these “rulers” who created this hell on earth
Who act, that human lives, don’t have any worth
They are examples of evil and should not be in power
They really are disgraceful and an awful bloody shower

Arrest the warmongering “leaders” who create havoc around the world
Authorizing bombings and killings these “leaders” should be reviled
Instead we give them fancy titles and homes to park their asses
Will there ever be a day of reckoning and a rise up of the masses?

Arrest the financiers of these bloody wars of destruction
This is how these blood sucking parasites get their satisfaction
Drag them away in chains and handcuffs, and orange prison attire
These are the corporate cannibals who set the world on fire

Arrest the fat and plump little “honourable” Ministers of Wars
They are the “useful idiots” for the leading warmongering whores
They never fight in battle or sacrifice any of their rotten lives
They get others to do their evil work while they themselves thrive

Arrest the corporate chieftains who feed off death and destruction
And who count their bloodstained profits with smiling satisfaction
These are the well dressed demons who call their investments “creating jobs”
Meanwhile, around the world the oppressed are crying, and nobody hears their sobs

Arrest the uniformed generals who blindly obey their marching orders
To bomb, kill, maim and destroy: they are the brainwashed enforcers
Years ago there were trials for war crimes committed by those in charge
Now we need them again for we have war criminals at large

Arrest all the aforementioned, and help clean up the world
We cannot afford these people in power: Are they mentally disturbed?
They are a danger to all of us and we better wake up
Is it time to arrest all of them: Have you had enough?…
[more info at links below]

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And:
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#11 Comment By Patrick Constantine On April 4, 2019 @ 1:03 pm

U.S. out of NATO and the turk out of Cyprus.
Just one man’s opinion.

#12 Comment By Cratylus On April 4, 2019 @ 2:26 pm

Bandow always has a streak of the Cold Warrior in him, but he is fully out of the closet in this piece.
Erdogan took a turn to clamping down on dissent after the coup failed. But who was behind that coup? Bandow and the foreign policy blob – or the rest of it – only offer the idea that Erdogan himself did it so he could justify his authoritarian rule. But that is thin gruel and in any other circumstance would be denounced by said blob as a conspiracy theory.
So who did this? Who would be concerned that Erdogan was drifting away from the West and NATO? Could it be the US or Israel? CIA? Nah, THAT would be a conspiracy theory – according to the blob.
The question of the coup’s authorship needs an answer. Turkey’s departure from NATO will weaken this awful instrument of war, a threat to humanity. We should praise Erdogan for getting out if he manages it.

#13 Comment By Hal Fiore On April 4, 2019 @ 2:44 pm

And, yet, in the very first paragraph, you give us the best reason not to do any such thing.

#14 Comment By Luke On April 4, 2019 @ 3:35 pm

Whatever good will that I had toward Turkey took a big hit when I saw three American sailors on shore leave, in uniform, ganged up on and harrassed by Turkish citizens so that they had to retreat back to their ship. And then, when Erdogan’s thugs assaulted American protestors in the nation’s capital it was the last straw. Turkey is the enemy.

#15 Comment By Blovia On April 4, 2019 @ 4:58 pm

“Whatever good will that I had toward Turkey took a big hit when I saw three American sailors on shore leave, in uniform, ganged up on and harrassed by Turkish citizens so that they had to retreat back to their ship. “

Jeepers! US sailors on shore leave “harassed” by the locals! Turkey is the enemy! Kick it out of NATO!

Ridiculous. By that standard we’d have to kick out half of the alliance.

#16 Comment By Fran Macadam On April 4, 2019 @ 5:51 pm

NATO, like the United States, is something you can check into voluntarily, but you can’t never leave – the real world Hotel California, as sung by the American Eagles!

#17 Comment By Mark Krvavica On April 4, 2019 @ 9:37 pm

With the fall of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics in December 1991, there was no need for NATO. Turkey and the United States should have left this Cold War relic during the 1990s instead of celebrating its 70th Anniversary in Washington City yesterday.

#18 Comment By James from Durham On April 5, 2019 @ 7:40 am

“Except for the weasels and backward fools that run Britain. Sorry Scotland and Ireland you gotta put up with that, I know.”

Yeah Fayez, please spare a thought for us English and Welsh who have to put up with them too.

#19 Comment By Barometer Drop On April 5, 2019 @ 12:52 pm

Blovia said “Jeepers! US sailors on shore leave “harassed” by the locals! Turkey is the enemy! Kick it out of NATO!”

You beat me to it. Good Lord. “Harassment” of US sailors by local Turks? Israel actually killed dozens of American sailors. When are we dumping Israel? Dumping Israel would save us more money and grief than dumping Turkey, that’s for sure.

#20 Comment By BraveNewWorld On April 5, 2019 @ 5:58 pm

>”Turkey’s relations with Israel have sharply deteriorated.”

This is the only thing that matters. If Turkey agrees to any thing that Israel wants then the US will lift the sanctions, Turkey can torcher, murder, rape their people, arm terrorists any thing they want. See the KSA and other countries as examples.

As mentioned above there is no way out of NATO. Please kick Turkey out to set the president so the rest of us can break free.

#21 Comment By Stephen J. On April 5, 2019 @ 6:06 pm

More info on “NATO” at links below.
——–
NATO 70 Years Old… Still Vigorous in Aggression

NATO is a military monster desperately in search of a purpose. The substitution of Russia as an enemy in place of the Soviet Union doesn’t quite hold the same propaganda cachet, but nonetheless that is why Moscow continues to be designated the official “enemy” – in order to justify the existence of NATO. The US-led military bloc needs enemies like a junkie needs a narcotic fix….

NATO forces have assisted US illegal wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, among other interventions. This by an organization that self-declares itself a bastion of security and peace….

[read more at link below]

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‘Security risk & lawbreaker’: German MP says 70yo NATO should retire

Published time: 5 Apr, 2019 12:20Edited time: 5 Apr, 2019 12:58

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#22 Comment By Carroll Price On April 6, 2019 @ 9:32 am

“Turkey’s relations with Israel have sharply deteriorated. Ankara violated U.S. sanctions on Iran and increased commercial ties with Venezuela’s government, also under sanctions.”

Can’t imagine better reasons for Turkey to remain a friend of the American people.

#23 Comment By Oscar Peterson On April 6, 2019 @ 10:38 am

@BraveNewWorld

Yes, exactly right. It’s interesting to note that Turkey first started to show interest in the S-400 in 2009, in the wake of the 2008-09 Israel-Gaza fracas. It was then that Turkey-Israel relations were starting their downhill slide based on Edrogan’s (and most Turks’) outrage at the Israeli onslaught and then the Mari Marmora incident in which Israeli SOF killed Turkish crew members of a Gaza-bound relief ship.

Ultimately, Turkey has come to understand that the US will back Israel to the hilt no matter what it does, to the detriment of any other nominal ally, Turkey included.

In the wake of the failed US-Turkish-Saudi-Qatari-Israeli meddling in the Syrian civil war, the US decide that the only way to stay in the game–that is, to thwart the victory of Assad and his backers–was to adopt the Syrian Kurds as a proxy force. Israel and its shills have been pushing Kurdish independence in Iraq and Syria for years, because it will give them permanent proxy forces and forward bases for use against Iran, Turkey and the respective Arab states.

Once again, US policy will always support Israel regardless of its ill effects on any other “allies.”

In short, Israel and its disloyal Jewish lobby in this country explain virtually all our problems with Turkey, Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and the Middle East in general.

#24 Comment By Luke On April 6, 2019 @ 4:06 pm

Jeepers! US sailors on shore leave “harassed” by the locals! Turkey is the enemy! Kick it out of NATO!

Ah, nice job of intentionally ignoring the greater context of the issue. Nowhere did I say that this alone counts against Turkey. There’s more to find for those sincerely looking for it. Turkey is an enemy..in or out of NATO.

#25 Comment By Luke On April 6, 2019 @ 4:11 pm

When are we dumping Israel?

Moral equivalence fallacy. This thread is about Turkey not Israel.

#26 Comment By Promagistrate On April 6, 2019 @ 8:03 pm

Sarah should be the Pope. Period.

#27 Comment By AJ On April 6, 2019 @ 9:27 pm

“Washington has little ability to influence politics in Turkey.”

We have the failed US backed coup in 2016 to prove it.

#28 Comment By John C Durham On April 6, 2019 @ 11:15 pm

I didn’t expect to read NeoCon-Lib remarks here. We shouldn’t have NATO and we shouldn’t have “alliances” that are 99% with primarily UK, Saudi or Israel interests. We shouldn’t be deciding who we are going to have relationships with based on who is going to support our next regime change, which by the way, we tried to do in Turkey just a little while ago. Shut up.

#29 Comment By Mohamed On April 7, 2019 @ 2:59 am

NATO has outlived its usefulness. It is absolutely useless organization that should have been disbanded more than 20 years ago. Contrary to what the author of this piece may think, it is in the interest of Turkey to abandon this sinking aimless NATO ship.

#30 Comment By Murat On April 7, 2019 @ 8:59 am

US foreign policy makers supported chauvinist puppets in my country for more than 60 years. Now Mr. Bandow says Turkey is not acting like an ally. What was your expectation?!

Now you’re suggesting to kick Turkey out of NATO. Kicking out a country shaped in an American vision to the hands of Russia. Isn’t it the best way of creating an enemy?

Mr. Bandow should ask himself: How did this so called Sultan strengthened this much? Who protected Turkish jihadists from Turkish army in 1990s?

My country, Turkey is not a problem. It’s in fact the result of your false foreign policy.

#31 Comment By G-Pol On April 7, 2019 @ 2:11 pm

We can’t kick Turkey out. There’s no provision in the NATO treaty that allows that. The only thing we could do is either (1) wait for Turkey to withdraw voluntarily; or (2) withdraw from NATO ourselves and watch it collapse.

Option #1 is not going to work, because Turkey seems to be deliberately staying in NATO SPECIFICALLY to play the US and Russia against each other so they don’t unite against Erdogan, who personally despises both countries but needs them in order to achieve his imperialistic ambitions.

Thus, option #2 is the only safe option. Yet another reason to leave NATO.

#32 Comment By Bianca On April 7, 2019 @ 10:09 pm

And Erdogan tired of Israel’s antics. Wirh the rest of the world. Cannot be kicked out, unless Turkey leaves. What justified NATO refusal to sell Turkey Patriots? Now, US is being generous all if a sudden. Every country has their interests, and we were instead quite happy with the coup attempt in Turkey. Nothing is this simple.

#33 Comment By furbo On April 8, 2019 @ 7:41 am

Well, Turkey, despite not reaching 2% on Defense does actually have a credible military force…..unlike most NATO allies abd they’re holding millions of muslim refugees so there is that. Our only REAL friction with Turkey is their determination to massacre the Syrian Kurds (the ones who actually did the majority of Isis killing) once we leave Syria. Orban is becoming authoritarian as well but no ones talking about kicking Hungary out of the alliance. NATO – Was not in charge of the Afghanistan war, the Iraq War, or the Syrian War. NATO was not present at all in Iraq or Syria. The Afghanistan and Iraq operations were fully vetted by the US Congress and certainly not illegal. France left NATO’s integrated command structure between 1967 and 2009. NATO had more aims than countering Russia and it still works in US interests generally.