Turkey

Michael Collins: Things are Different (and sometimes much better) in the East

Michael Collins

The nation formerly known as the Ottoman Empire is building a strong foundation for a bright future. That nation is also addressing its scandalous recent past as it reaches out to old enemies. The dynamics producing real change in Turkey are well worth understanding. Turkey is on a path to rapid economic growth, cultural liberalization, and will emerge as a key player in world affairs.

The Turkish people elected a new government in 2002. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan became Prime Minister after his AK Party gained an absolute majority in the nation's unicameral legislature. The United States corporate media tagged the AK party as a threat to Turkey's secular democracy. This is, as usual, a perversion of the political and social realities.

Here are the key elements contributing to Turkey's success.

Turkish Military Defies Civilian Rule

Michael Collins

On July 24, an Istanbul Court ordered the arrest of 102 current and former high ranking Turkish military officers. The military responded by shielding the officers in locations that made arrests difficult, if not impossible. This provoked the current conflict between Turkey's constitutionally independent judiciary and the military. (Image)

The officers charged were allegedly part of Sledgehammer, the latest plan in a series of military plots and coups by the Turkish high command. The military and its allies were to blow up mosques, churches, and synagogues; then blame these acts on terrorists, Kurdish separatists, for example. In addition, the military planned to provoke the shoot down a Turkish aircraft by the Greek military and down a civilian airliner blaming it on terrorists.

Flotilla Attack Blowback - Israel Sows Wind, Reaps Whirlwind

TURKEY: CRISIS AT SEA: ISRAEL ATTACKS GAZA AID FLOTILLA, Daily News, Ankara, June 1

"It should be known that we will not stay silent and unresponsive in the face of this inhuman state terror," Turkish PM, Erdoğan.

From Ankara:

Keystone Kondi's Kurdish Kaper

Condoleezza Rice, Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science and 66th United States Secretary of State, arrived unannounced in the oil rich Iraqi city of Kirkuk on Tuesday, just after Turkey's attacks on Kurdish targets in northern Iraq, to do what she does best: step into a bad situation and make it worse.

Keystone Kop-out

Two Wars, No Hits, Two Errors, One Left

Despite the neoconservative establishment's best efforts at amending history, Mr. Bush will go down as the first U.S. president to lose two wars. Efforts at spinning the recent "military success" in Iraq have met their inevitable collision with ground truth.