Once the apotheosis of a pro-Western, dependable Muslim democracy, this week Turkey officially left the Western alliance and became a full member of the Iranian axis.That's right, don't forget one of the Bush administration's poorer steps there.
It isn't that Turkey's behavior changed fundamentally in recent days. There is nothing new in its massive hostility towards Israel and its effusive solicitousness towards the likes of Syria and Hamas. Since the Islamist AKP party first won control over the Turkish government in the 2002 elections, led by AKP chairman Recip Tayyip Erdogan, the Turks have incrementally and inexorably moved the formerly pro-Western Muslim democracy into the radical Islamist camp populated by the likes of Iran, Syria, Hizbullah, al Qaida and Hamas. What made Turkey's behavior this week different from its behavior in recent months and years is that its attacks were concentrated, unequivocal and undeniable for everyone outside of Israel's scandalously imbecilic and flagellant media.
Until this week, both Israel and the US were quick to make excuses for Ankara. When in 2003 the AKP-dominated Turkish parliament prohibited US forces from invading Iraq through Kurdistan, the US blamed itself. Rather than get angry at Turkey, the Bush administration argued that its senior officials had played the diplomatic game poorly.
Initially, this week Israel sought to continue its policy of making excuses for Turkish aggression against it. On Sunday, after Turkey disinvited the IAF from the Anatolian Eagle joint air exercise with Turkey, and NATO, senior officials like Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon and Opposition leader Tzipi Livni tried to make light of the incident claiming that Turkey remains Israel's strategic ally.Yep, that was one of the most vomit inducing stunts they could pull. The Jerusalem Post tells that no Israelis want to fly to Turkey now with the way things are going:
But Turkey wasted no time in making fools of them. On Monday eleven Turkish government ministers descended on Syria to sign a pile of cooperation agreements with Iran's Arab lackey. The Foreign Ministry didn't even have a chance to write apologetic talking points explaining that brazen move before Syria announced it was entering a military alliance with Turkey and would be holding a joint military exercise with the Turkish military. Speechless in the wake of Turkey's move to hold military maneuvers with its enemy just two days after it cancelled joint training with Israel, Jerusalem could think of no mitigating explanation for the move.
Tuesday was characterized by escalating verbal assaults on the Jewish state. First Erdogan renewed his libelous allegations that Israel deliberately killed children in Gaza. Then he called on Turks to learn how to make money like Jews do.
Erdogan's anti-Israel and anti-Semitic blows were followed Tuesday evening by Turkey's government-controlled TRT1 television network's launch of a new prime-time series portraying IDF forces as baby and little girl killers who force Palestinian women to deliver stillborn babies at roadblocks and line up groups of Palestinians against walls to execute them by firing squad.
With a new wave of anti-Israel sentiment in Turkey, and a furious response in Israel, the once-booming tourism trade between the countries is already feeling the effects.Maybe even longer than that. But if I were him, I'd rather not rely on countries like Turkey to sell tickets for tourism. This is what happens when no serious attempt is made to make clear to a country with a horrific past like Turkey's that they must own up for their past evils and crimes and abandon all ideologies that could one day lead back to more of the same. That's why their backtrack is no real surprise, and come to think of it, their loss is yet no real loss. If they're going to boomerang to such mostrosities, it's hard for me to feel sorry to "lose" their alliance.
"I can't sell a Turkish Air ticket going via Istanbul," Mark Feldman, CEO of Zion Tours, told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday. Istanbul is a common stop-over point on the way to many other destinations.
"Nobody, but nobody, wishes to fly there... packages are very cheap, the airline is a good airline... [but] people are voting with their feet," Feldman said.
Relations with Turkey have recently been strained, due to Turkey's withdrawal from an international military exercise involving Israel, a series of verbal assaults from Turkish leaders, and the premiere of a new television series portraying IDF soldiers as murderers. The first episode of the series aired in Turkey on Tuesday evening and depicted IDF soldiers in the West Bank killing a baby and a young girl, and lining up Palestinians to be shot before a firing squad.
According to Feldman, "This [tourism decline] is getting intensified, and the television series will accelerate it. I expect this [Israeli tourist] boycott and this anger to last throughout the fall and winter."
And if Jews in Turkey are afraid that the TV propaganda they launched will boost anti-semitic violence, which is quite likely to happen, that's exactly why they should start packing. No need to remain in a country that's backtracking to Islamofascism.
And Armenia's government made a serious mistake in accepting the deal to open wider relations with Turkey without their agreement to recognize the Armenian Holocaust in WW1, something I get the feeling much of the Armenian public is angry about, with good reason. I won't be surprised if it falls apart sooner or later, and if Turkey starts spewing similar racism against Armenians as well on their government controlled TV.