Turkey - a real turkey?

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Still no untroubled sleep for those who may have someone in authority who bears a grudge against them.

'Turkish authorities have ordered the detention of 191 military personnel over suspected links to the network Ankara says orchestrated a failed coup in 2016, state-owned Anadolu news agency has reported.

'Authorities have carried out a sustained crackdown on alleged followers of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen since the failed coup in July 2016, when 250 people were killed. Gulen denies any involvement. The former ally of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lived in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania since 1999.

'The police operation was co-ordinated from the western city of Izmir and targeted people in 22 provinces, Anadolu said on Tuesday. The police had already detained 145 of the suspects. The suspects, mostly on active duty, were believed to have communicated to other Gulen followers through pay phones and to have received advantages in admission to military schools, Anadolu said.

'In a separate operation, police detained 16 military personnel the southeastern city Diyarbakir at the weekend, security sources said. On Tuesday, a local court jailed six of them pending trial and freed 10 others, the sources said.'


 
Doubtless a candidate for the next Gulenist round-up as a subversive and terrorist.

'The former prime minister of Turkey and leader of the newly established opposition Future Party, Ahmet Davutoğlu, on Monday slammed the government for reviving old discussions on turning Hagia Sophia back into a mosque. “Stop treating our sacred and common symbols as a get-out-of-jail-free card whenever you are stuck,” T24 news site quoted Ahmet Davutoğlu as saying. “The Hagia Sofia is not a tool in your hands or a bargaining chip.”

'The sixth century structure, originally built as a Byzantine cathedral in and turned into a mosque after Istanbul’s conquest by the Ottomans in 1453, has been serving as a museum since 1935. The Future Party leader said every government for decades had tried to instrumentalise a sacred space or a common value when it lost its touch with the people. “You may see it as a bargaining chip, but Hagia Sofia is the symbol of (Istanbul’s) conquest for us, first and foremost,” said Davutoğlu, who founded the Future Party in December following his fallout with the ruling Islamist Justice and Development Party.

'A decades-long dispute over turning the museum into a mosque, which would require approval from UNESCO as an important world heritage site, was revived in late May as the May 29 anniversary neared for Istanbul’s conquest, the namesake for Ottoman Sultan Mehmet the Conqueror.'


 

ROMFT

Old-Salt
Still no untroubled sleep for those who may have someone in authority who bears a grudge against them.

'Turkish authorities have ordered the detention of 191 military personnel over suspected links to the network Ankara says orchestrated a failed coup in 2016, state-owned Anadolu news agency has reported.

'Authorities have carried out a sustained crackdown on alleged followers of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen since the failed coup in July 2016, when 250 people were killed. Gulen denies any involvement. The former ally of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lived in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania since 1999.

'The police operation was co-ordinated from the western city of Izmir and targeted people in 22 provinces, Anadolu said on Tuesday. The police had already detained 145 of the suspects. The suspects, mostly on active duty, were believed to have communicated to other Gulen followers through pay phones and to have received advantages in admission to military schools, Anadolu said.

'In a separate operation, police detained 16 military personnel the southeastern city Diyarbakir at the weekend, security sources said. On Tuesday, a local court jailed six of them pending trial and freed 10 others, the sources said.'


One can only wonder what sort of moral or professional leadership is present in the Turkish forces involved in the various theatres of active dangerous duty ?
 
One can only wonder what sort of moral or professional leadership is present in the Turkish forces involved in the various theatres of active dangerous duty ?
Nervous.
 
Having been to Istanbul a few times (and it is an awesome city), I'm not particularly worried if this becomes a mosque again. Sultanahmet - the 'Blue Mosque' across the square from Aya Sofia - is open to the public (free - unlike Aya Sofia) and there is no shortage of official guides who take you around this amazing structure. That's the same for the other great mosque (and, personally, my favourite) Suleymaniya (Suleiman the Great), up the hill overlooking the Bosporus and the Sea of Marmara.

So, if Aya Sofia becomes a mosque, it will remain open to visitors with the added benefit of being free!
 
One can only wonder what sort of moral or professional leadership is present in the Turkish forces involved in the various theatres of active dangerous duty ?
The Turkish Army is a huge beast and carries on regardless, especially on COIN ops in the South East.
 

ROMFT

Old-Salt
The Turkish Army is a huge beast and carries on regardless, especially on COIN ops in the South East.
True, on a personal level I come across a lot of Turks at work & something like 90% pay several thousand €'s every year to avoid having to do compulsory military service, yet they are full of BS about Erdoğan :x & Turkish military prowess. The few who have actually walked the walk don't BS about it but still are very nationalist if their buttons are pushed.
I wasn't previously anti-Turkish, but several years of working with Neo-Ottomani's has turned me into something of a racist :twisted:
 
Hardly surprising, though not an area with which Turkey is commonly associated.

'Twitter permanently removed more than 32,000 accounts linked to three distinct operations attributed to China, Russia and Turkey violating the platform's manipulation policies, the social media company said Friday.

Earlier this week, the European Commission accused Moscow and, for the first time, Beijing of peddling disinformation. Twitter said it removed 23,750 accounts "tweeting predominantly in Chinese languages and spreading geopolitical narratives favorable to the Communist Party of China (CCP), while continuing to push deceptive narratives about the political dynamics in Hong Kong." About 150,000 additional accounts were designed to amplify the content of the core network. The Chinese network was caught early and failed to gain traction, Twitter said. Albeit new, the network's activities were modeled after similar behavior spotted by the company in August last year.

'With help from researchers and "peer companies," Twitter uncovered 1,152 accounts associated with Current Policy, a media engaging in state-backed political propaganda within Russia, that promoted Vladimir Putin's United Russia party and attacked political opponents. The network was suspended for "cross-posting and amplifying content in an inauthentic, coordinated manner for political ends." Twitter declined to disclose the "peer companies."

'The U.S. social media platform also removed 7,340 accounts engaging in "coordinated inauthentic activity" targeted at users in Turkey. The network was used to "amplify political narratives favorable to the AK Parti, and demonstrated strong support for President [Recep Tayyip] Erdoğan." Twitter archived the suspended accounts and shared data with the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) and Stanford Internet Observatory (SIO).'


 
The joys of having a frenemy inside a consensus-based organization.

'NATO must not bury its head in the sand with regard to Turkey’s recent behaviour towards its allies, a French defence ministry official said on Wednesday, accusing the Turkish navy of harassing a French warship on a NATO mission. A senior Turkish official denied the accusation, saying “no such thing” had occurred.

'NATO defence ministers will hold a virtual meeting this week amid growing tensions between Paris and Ankara. The two allies have traded barbs over the crisis in Libya, accusing each other of supporting opposing sides in the country’s war. Speaking ahead of the meeting, the French defence ministry official said it was time NATO had a frank discussion about Turkey and its conduct - not just in Libya, but other issues such as Ankara buying Russian S-400 defence systems and blocking NATO defence planning for the Baltics and Poland. “We have known complicated moments in the alliance, but we can’t be an ostrich and can’t pretend there isn’t a Turkey problem at NATO. We have to see it, say it and handle it,” said the official. Calling Turkey’s behaviour unacceptable, the official singled out Turkey’s role in Libya.

'Turkey, which backs the internationally recognised government in Tripoli, has secured a foothold in Libya by helping to repel an assault on the capital by the Libyan National Army (LNA) of eastern commander Khalifa Haftar, who is backed by the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Russia. The French official said Turkey’s decision to send more weapons and Syrian mercenaries into the country was doing nothing to achieve peace and in fact pushing Russia to increase its involvement. He accused the Turkish navy of using their NATO call signals while accompanying Turkish vessels suspected of breaking a U.N. arms embargo to deliver weapons to Libya. He cited a case in which he said Turkish naval ships acted aggressively towards a French warship on a NATO mission to check whether the Turkish vessel Cirkin was smuggling arms to Libya.

'French officials said the Cirkin had switched off its tracking system, masked its ID number and refused to say where it was going. “It was an extremely aggressive act and cannot be the action of an ally who is working within NATO under the command of NATO,” the French defence official said. The senior Turkish official rejected the accusation, saying French forces had sought to search a Turkish vessel in international waters “and this was not permitted”, and that Turkey had taken no provocative or aggressive action to prevent this. “However we expect allies to show the same understanding and sensitivity towards the Turkish navy and its presence.”



'Turkey continues to block a NATO defence plan for Poland and Baltic states despite a deal last year between Turkey’s president and allied leaders, three allied diplomats and a French defence official said on Wednesday.

'Diplomats said while Ankara has approved the plan, known as Eagle Defender, it has not allowed NATO military chiefs to put it into action. The dispute, first reported by Reuters in November, is a sign that divisions remain between Ankara, Paris and Washington over Turkey’s offensive last year in northern Syria and that frictions over broader NATO strategy have not been resolved.

'The Turkish government did not immediately respond for request for comment. NATO defence ministers are due to meet later on Wednesday and Thursday via secure video call. “Turkey is refusing to accept these plans unless we recognise the PYD/PKK as a terrorist entity,” a French defence official said, referring to Syrian and Turkish Kurdish groups that Ankara regards as dangerous rebels. “We say no. We need to show solidarity for eastern allies and it’s not acceptable to block these plans,” the official said.

'At a NATO summit in December, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan agreed with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg and other allied leaders to drop such demands. Turkey began its offensive in northern Syria after the United States pulled 1,000 troops out of the area in October. Ankara’s NATO allies have said the incursion undermines the battle against Islamic State militants. The plan for the Baltic states and Poland, drawn up at their request after Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, has no direct bearing on Turkey’s strategy in Syria, but it raises issues about security on all of NATO’s frontiers.'


 
Published by: LORNE COOK, Associated Press, on 18 JUNE 2020.

NATO to probe France-Turkey Med naval incident

BRUSSELS (AP) — NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday that the military alliance would investigate an incident between Turkish warships and a French naval vessel in the Mediterranean, as France accused Turkey of repeated violations of the U.N. arms embargo on conflict-torn Libya and branded Ankara an obstacle to securing a cease-fire there.


According to a French defense official, the frigate Courbet was “lit up” three times by Turkish naval targeting radar when it tried to approach a Turkish civilian ship suspected of involvement in arms trafficking. The ship was being escorted by three Turkish warships. The Courbet backed off after being targeted.

The French frigate was part of NATO’s naval operation in the Mediterranean, Sea Guardian, at the time of the June 10 incident. France claims that under the alliance’s rules of engagement such conduct is considered a hostile act. Turkey has denied harassing the Courbet.

“We have made sure that NATO military authorities are investigating the incident to bring full clarity into what happened,” Stoltenberg told reporters after chairing a video meeting between NATO defense ministers, where he said the issue was addressed by several participants.

“I think that’s the best way now to deal with that, clarify what actually happened,” he added.

In remarks to a French Senate committee, Defense Minister Florence Parly said that eight NATO member countries are supporting Paris over the incident, which she described as “serious and unacceptable.”

In a statement prior to the NATO meeting, the French foreign ministry took aim at Ankara, saying that “the main obstacle to the establishment of peace and stability in Libya today lies in the systematic violation of the U.N. arms embargo, in particular by Turkey, despite the commitments made in Berlin” talks early this year.

The European Union has a naval operation in the Mediterranean aimed helping to enforce the embargo, but Turkey, a NATO member whose efforts to join the EU have stalled, suspects that it is too one-sided, focusing on the internationally recognized Libyan administration in Tripoli, which Turkey supports.

Asked whether the 30 members of the military alliance should respect the arms embargo, Stoltenberg said that “NATO of course supports the implementation of U.N. decisions, including U.N. arms embargoes.”

Libya has been in turmoil since 2011, when a NATO-backed uprising toppled leader Moammar Gadhafi, who was later killed. The country has since been split between rival administrations in the east and the west, each backed by armed groups and different foreign governments.

The government in Tripoli led by Fayez Sarraj is backed not just by Turkey, which sent troops and mercenaries to protect the capital in January, but also Italy and Qatar. Rival forces under the command of Khalifa Hifter, who launched an offensive on Tripoli last year, are supported by France, Russia, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates and other key Arab countries.

“Turkey’s support for the government of national accord’s offensive goes directly against the efforts to secure a ceasefire, which we support,” the French ministry said. “This support is aggravated by the hostile and unacceptable actions of Turkish naval forces toward NATO allies, which is aimed at undermining efforts taking place to uphold the U.N. arms embargo.”

“This conduct, like all foreign interference in the Libyan conflict, must cease,” it warned.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell is trying to secure NATO’s support for Europe’s own naval effort, Operation Irini, possibly in part to avoid such incidents in the future, but diplomats and officials have said that Turkey is likely to block any such move.

Borrell, who took part in the NATO video meeting, said Wednesday that he hopes an EU-NATO “cooperation agreement can be set up” shortly, because helping to enforce the arms embargo is in the security interests of both organizations.

Asked Wednesday what the response might be, Stoltenberg said “we are looking into possible support, possible cooperation, but no decision has been taken. There is dialogue, contacts, addressing that as we speak.”

Borrell has highlighted some of the challenges the EU naval operation faces. He said its personnel tried to make contact last week with a “suspicious” Tanzanian-flagged cargo ship that was being escorted by two Turkish warships. He said the ship refused to respond, but its Turkish escorts said the cargo was medical equipment bound for Libya.

The EU operation tried to verify the information with Turkish and Tanzanian authorities, and reported the incident to the United Nations, but there was nothing more it could do, he said.

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Standby for another Turkish play on the Greek border if the EU takes France's line.

'France’s foreign minister said on Wednesday that European Union foreign ministers would meet on July 13 to discuss Turkey and said new sanctions on Ankara could be considered.

“At our request there will be a meeting of EU foreign ministers on July 13 solely on the Turkish question,” Jean-Yves Le Drian told a parliamentary hearing. “Sanctions have already been taken on Turkey by the EU over Turkey’s drilling in the Cyprus economic zone. Other sanctions may be envisaged.”


 
Copied to the Turkey-Libya thread . . .

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +

Published by: Xavier Vavasseur, NAVAL NEWS, on 03 Jul 2020.

France Pulls Out of NATO Operation Sea Guardian Amid Tensions with Turkey.

France announced Wednesday July 1st that it is suspending its involvement in NATO operation Sea Guardian following tensions with Turkey.

The move follows an incident which took place off the Libyan coast on June 10 between French Navy (Marine Nationale) La Fayette-class Frigate Courbet and Turkish Navy (Türk Deniz Kuvvetleri) vessels (including allegedly Barbaros-class frigate TCG Oruçreis). The Courbet was then taking part in Operation Sea Guardian, having departed Toulon Naval base on 28 May, according to a NATO press release.

The incident happened in a context of strong political tensions between France and Turkey, in particular over Libya.

France says the Courbet was targeted three times by the Turkish vessel’s fire control radars, which is an hostile act. The French frigate was trying to approach a Tanzanian-flagged civilian ship suspected of involvement in arms trafficking with Libya. The cargo ship was under the escort of three Turkish vessels. Turkey denied harassing the Courbet.

During an hearing at the EU’s Security and Defense Subcommittee on July 2nd, French minister of the armed forces, Florence Parly said:

I would like to pause for a moment on the very worrying behavior of Turkey. France and Turkey are both participating in the NATO Sea Guardian maritime security operation in the eastern Mediterranean, of which one of the missions is to provide maritime surveillance against trafficking.

This came after the United Nations imposed an embargo on arms supplies to Libya. Fifteen days ago, when a French ship was controlling a suspicious cargo ship from Turkey, Turkish frigates interfered and one of them, as we say in military language, illuminated the French ship with its fire control radar. It is an aggressive and unworthy act for a NATO ally.

I then pointed that very clearly at the last NATO ministerial meeting. I have been supported by many of my European counterparts and I thank them. We are supposed to be an alliance. An ally who conscientiously violates the rules that the Alliance is supposed to enforce and tries to threaten those who interrogate him is not acceptable. We therefore made four requests to prevent this type of incident from happening again:

  • a solemn reaffirmation of respect for the embargo;
  • a categorical rejection of Turkey’s use of NATO codes to carry out its traffic;
  • better cooperation between the EU and NATO;
  • and deconfliction mechanisms.
Pending clarification on these various points, the President of the French Republic has decided to withdraw the French resources devoted to Sea Guardian until further notice.

A similar incident has been reported by the Hellenic Navy when one of its helicopter tried to land a VBSS team aboard another cargo vessel off Libya, but was warned by radio message that the vessel was under protection of the Turkish Republic. CNN Greece, which first reported the incident, said the Hellenic frigate was the Spetsai and the cargo vessel was Tanzanian-flagged Cirkin. The Spetsai was not part of NATO operation Sea Guardian but was under the command of European operation IRINI, which was set up by the European Union in February to stop arms imports to Libya in accordance with the UN weapons embargo.

Operation Sea Guardian is a non-Article 5 Maritime Security Operation, working with Mediterranean stakeholders to deter and counter terrorism, project stability and mitigate the risk of other threats to security for NATO Allies and partners in the Mediterranean Sea and its surrounding area. OSG has three core missions: maritime situational awareness, counter-terrorism and capacity building.

[photo] French FS Courbet casts off for EUROMARFOR patrol. NATO picture.

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Published by: Tom WHEELDON, FRANCE 24, on 03 JULY 2020.

Turkey challenges allies and enemies alike in quest for ‘larger role on world stage’.

Turkish foreign policy has recently taken a hawkish turn in the Middle East and North Africa. From a diplomatic row with NATO ally France over a Libyan arms embargo to the deployment of special forces in northern Iraq, Ankara seems newly willing to challenge allies and enemies alike in its pursuit of a larger role on the world stage.

Even by the standards of recent years, June 2020 was a very active month in Turkish foreign policy. It quickly became clear that Turkey’s military and technological support for the UN-recognised Government of National Accord (GNA) in Libya had given it the upper hand in its struggle against rebel commander Khalifa Haftar’s Libyan National Army.

Chaos had reigned in Libya since the overthrow of dictator Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. Haftar launched a bold offensive on the capital Tripoli in April 2019 with the backing of Russia, Egypt and the UAE. While France officially supports the internationally recognised government in Tripoli, Paris has been accused of supporting Haftar politically, having previously given him military assistance to fight Islamist militants.

Ankara demonstrated its growing confidence in its Libyan strategy on June 20, when it demanded that Haftar’s forces pull out of Sirte, a pivotal city linking the east and west of Libya – before lambasting NATO ally France, accusing it of “jeopardising” the Western alliance’s security by supporting Haftar’s forces . . .

‘Geopolitical competition’ with France

Franco-Turkish relations soured further the following week, when French President Emmanuel Macron told Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that he was playing a “dangerous game” in sending arms, aerial support and allied fighters from Syria to boost the GNA – warning that France “won’t tolerate” such actions.
But Turkey’s support – with the provision of drones proving particularly effective – eventually shifted the dynamic in the GNA’s favour.

“Libya is part of a bunch of interlinking stories,” said Howard Eissenstat, a Turkey specialist, associate professor at St. Lawrence University and senior non-resident fellow at the Project on Middle Eastern Democracy. “Turkey clearly sees itself as being able to play a larger role on the world stage; it sees its Western allies as not necessarily supporting of that, and has been willing to play hardball to assert what it sees as its national interest.”

“From a Turkish standpoint, this represents a role that it has much right to as any other state, and which it has the capacity to play,” Eissenstat continued.

Turkey wants to “fortify its position as a regional power and increase its geopolitical footprint in the Middle East and North Africa region”, added Ozgur Unluhisarcikli, director of the German Marshall Fund’s Ankara bureau. “This in turn leads to geopolitical competition with some countries, as is the case with France.”
Ankara’s relations with its NATO allies hit another low on June 10, when Turkish naval boats conducted radar-targeting – indicating that a missile strike may be incoming – on a French warship trying to approach a Turkish civilian ship suspected of contravening a NATO arms embargo on Libya. According to a French defence official, the Courbet frigate was “lit up” three times by Turkish radar.

France called for NATO allies to discuss Turkey’s “aggressive” role in Libya a few days later. NATO subsequently launched an investigation into the incident.

Animosity between Ankara and Paris intensified on July 1, when France announced that it was suspending its involvement in NATO’s Sea Guardian operation in the Mediterranean enforcing the Libyan arms embargo.
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has dismissed France’s claims and demanded an apology from France for “anti-Turkish actions”, alleging that France “has not told the truth to the EU or NATO”.

EU foreign ministers will meet at France’s request to discuss relations with Turkey on July 13. Adding the intrigue of espionage to the diplomatic slanging match, Ankara’s ambassador to France on Thursday confirmed reports that four Turkish nationals had been arrested for spying for the French foreign intelligence agency, the DGSE (Direction générale de la Sécurité extérieure).
Unprecedented deployment in Iraq

Turkey’s successful backing of Libya’s GNA may be Ankara’s most surprising geopolitical win recently. But Erdogan’s government also surprised many observers in June with an unprecedented deployment in northern Iraq against Kurdish forces.

Since 1984, Kurdish militant group the PKK – considered a terrorist organisation by Turkey as well as the EU, UK and US – has waged a series of armed rebellions against the Turkish state. Like his Kemalist predecessors and antagonists, Erdogan sees the PKK as an existential threat to Turkey’s territorial integrity.

This motivated the Turkish military’s first-ever deployment of ground forces on Iraqi soil on June 17, attacking PKK targets in the country’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region. Accusing the Baghdad government and Kurdish executive of failing to deal with PKK fighters – who allegedly use the area as a base for attacks on Turkey – Ankara sent in commando forces alongside warplanes, attack helicopters and drones after an intense artillery bombardment.

The Turkish military has been emboldened by its improved technological capabilities, Unluhisarcikli suggested: “These campaigns have become more proactive and effective thanks to the new abilities the Turkish army has gained, particularly with the use of armed drones.”

Yet Syria – where Ankara has given support to its allies since the civil war started in 2011 – remains the theatre in which Turkey is best known for striking Kurdish forces. Upon starting its direct military involvement there in 2016, Turkey launched the first in a series of attacks on the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) – a Kurdish group that allied with Western powers in the fight against the Islamic State group but which Ankara says is tied to the PKK.

Turkey’s latest and most audacious Syrian offensive was a victorious October 2019 campaign that saw its military carve out a 20-mile-deep “safe zone” seized from the SDF along the border – much to the chagrin of European powers. Turkey said it was creating an area for some of the 3.6 million Syrian refugees in the country, but critics accused Ankara of ethnic cleansing as tens of thousands of Kurdish civilians fled their homes.
A Damoclean sword over Europe?

Erdogan responded to European indignation by holding a sword of Damocles over the continent’s head. After a chorus of protestations from the old continent decrying the offensive – including Macron’s demand that Ankara “put a stop to it as soon as possible” – the Turkish president said on October 10: “Hey EU, wake up. I say it again: If you try to frame our operation as an invasion, our task is simple – we will open the doors and send 3.6 million migrants to you.”

Analysts noted at the time that Erdogan’s reaction exemplified the lack of leverage the EU has over Turkey.
Macron expressed his exasperation with Erdogan the same day: When a reporter asked him for his views on the Turkish president’s menacing rhetoric, he said he had “nothing more” to add to his previous comments.

As the evolving Libyan situation took testy bilateral exchanges to a full-blown Franco-Turkish diplomatic confrontation, Macron made a broader point about the Western alliance. The French president doubled down on his 2019 proclamation in The Economist that NATO is experiencing a “brain death”, saying that the Mediterranean naval incident between the two NATO allies constitutes “the best example of it”.

“Turkey has been the proverbial thorn in NATO’s side for years now,” said Reilly Barry, a Turkey researcher at Harvard University. She said that Erdogan’s 2017 announcement that Turkey would purchase an S-400 air-defence system from Russia – motivated, in part, by a desire to “exert independence apart from the West” – remains the “greatest low point in the historic alliance”. Barry predicted that activating the missiles will “likely trigger sanctions from the US and other NATO members”.

But while Erdogan’s migrant threat gives him a trump card over European powers, it seems he can ill afford to antagonise the United States. American sanctions may reveal the limits of his gift for playing hardball – given Turkey’s economic vulnerability and US dominance of the world’s financial sector.

Turkey’s currency debt crisis reached a critical point in August of 2018 after Washington imposed sanctions on Turkish officials in response to the detention of an American pastor. The coronavirus crisis further exposed persistent economic troubles – high debt and rapidly depleting foreign currency reserves – when the Turkish lira plunged to a record low against the dollar in May.

Barry said that in light of all this, “whether Turkish engagement in the Middle East is economically stable largely depends on the status of US-Turkey relations”.
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Turkey challenges allies and enemies alike in quest for ‘larger role on world stage’
 
The EU really dodged a bullet when they decided not to allow 82 million Muslims to become EU members, as their present behaviour as NATO members is presently demonstrating

They certainly did not expect to be turfed out of the F-35 consortium believing that they were irreplaceable. Their considerable arms trade is largely built upon Western expertise and joint projects.

Erdogan’s new Ottoman Empire is now under construction.
 

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