Omri Ceren beat me to the punch by pointing out how the Turkish government has undercut NATO’s larger mission by holding the organization hostage to its own diplomatic squabbles. Omri is absolutely correct in his analysis: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, a man with a pronounced hatred for Israel and it seems for Jews as well, seeks to involve NATO in his vendetta against the Jewish state. Regional officials understand Erdoğan instigated and manufactured the crisis with Israel. When the Bulgarian foreign minister had the temerity to point this out to Egemen Bağış, a close Erdoğan confidante, Bağış’s delegation dismissed his remark by suggesting that perhaps the Bulgarian minister was polluted with Jewish blood.
Turkey, however, is seeking not only to cheapen NATO, but is also holding Syrian hostage. During the last few months, Erdoğan threw a temper tantrum aboutthe French senate’s decision to criminalize denial of the Armenian genocide, although the law was eventually struck down by the constitutional court. Frankly, I would also criticize the French action on nothing other than free speech grounds. (For the record, I also oppose criminalization of Holocaust denial on free speech grounds, though I do not believe that respect for free speech mandates acceptance of poor scholarship or inane journalism). So now, because France contradicted Erdoğan’s sense of history, Turkey may exclude France from meetings relating to the situation in Syria.
Meanwhile, a new diplomatic brouhaha is brewing over threats made by Egemen “I smell Jewish blood” Bağış, ironically Turkey’s European Union minister, who has threatened that Turkey may unilaterally annex a third of Cyprus in which it has set up a puppet state, and whose oil resources it covets.
Perhaps for Erdoğan, not only the Jews are expendable, but the Syrians and Cypriots as well. Such is the price when one does not give sufficient honor to the Imam of Istanbul, as Erdoğan once described himself, or the Putin of Anatolia, as he’s increasingly known.