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Turkey

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Turkey would seem to have every element that makes the heart of an idealistic Western journo go pitty-pat: Democracy under attack, journalists getting detained and beaten up, fascism on the march, moderate, middle-class protesters getting shredded by Islamic suicide bombers with alleged government connivance, rampant skullduggery in the run-up to a crucial election on November... Read More
This is quite the bombshell delivered by two CHP deputies in the Turkish parliament and reported by Today's Zaman, one of the top dailies in Turkey. It supports Seymour Hersh's reporting that the notorious sarin gas attack at Ghouta was a false flag orchestrated by Turkish intelligence in order to cross President Obama's chemical weapons... Read More
Uyghurs, Turkey, & Passports…or Thailand, Human Trafficking, and Corruption...and Uyghur Patsies?
I’m still an agnostic on the Uyghurs dunnit theory, at least as far as the “aggrieved Uyghurs bombed the Erawan shrine to kill Chinese tourists in revenge for repatriation of Uyghurs to PRC” way. The only things we know for sure right now is that a) the Thai government is anxious to manage & control... Read More
Evidence keeps accummulating that a clandestine Turkish government program to enable Uyghur emigration from the PRC--for motives either noble, sinister, or both--has turned into a major security cock-up, embarrassment for Turkey, and a serious issue in PRC-Turkish relations. I wrote this on July 11 on the occasion of the forcible repatriation of over one hundred... Read More
The year-long tug of war between Turkey and the PRC over several hundred Uyghur detainees in Thailand was finally resolved, Solomonic fashion, by Thailand sending 170+ women and children to Istanbul in early July in a little noticed event, and the deportation of 100+ Uyghur men to the PRC this week, which has occasioned much... Read More
Me on Twitter on July 1: IMO most important development in PRC security is mainstreaming of support for Uyghurs in TK national politics. Way more serious than SCS. Turkish anti-PRC furor was fueled by reports of the PRC campaign against Ramadan. In Daily Sabah, the English-language version of Sabah, a Turkish daily closely associated with... Read More
The big news today is that Saudi Arabia and Turkey are clubbing together to overthrow the Assad regime. Actually, this is old news. What happened today is that the news embargo was lifted and the AP’s Desmond Butler got to print the scoop. It was apparent for a couple weeks that something along these lines... Read More
Yesterday I speculated that the plethora of fraudulent Turkish passports showing up in the hands of Uyghur refugees could be attributed to the connivance of Turkish government elements. The passports, after all, are smart-chipped biometric documents (in order to satisfy EU requirements as part of the Turkish admission campaign), and seem virtually impossible to forge... Read More
To demonstrate that it’s possible, for me anyway, to acquire a lot of useful information in a short period of time via Twitter, I offer for your consideration this series of exchanges (with multipart tweets stitched together for continuity and clarity): Tweets From Aleppo ‏@halabtweets The whole northern countryside of #Aleppo is crawling with mercenaries/terrorists... Read More
No, We’re Not Here to Help…We’re Here to Stir the Sh*t
I believe that President Obama tipped his hand as to the basic US strategy for IS in Iraq and Syria when he stated that the US goal was to reduce IS to “a manageable problem” . Once the appalling implications of this apparent endorsement of a permanent presence for the transnational, decapitation-happy caliphate sank in,... Read More
Seymour Hersh has an important piece up at the London Review of Books implicating Turkey in the August 2013 sarin gas incident that almost triggered a US attack on Syria.  I wonder how much traction it will get.   Specifically, will it get more traction than the recent clandestine Youtube release of the confab between the... Read More
[This post originally appeared at Asia Times Online on September 27, 2013, under the title Turkey Goes for Chinese take-away defense.  It can be reposted if ATOl is credited and a link provided.] On September 26, 2013, Turkey made the rather eyebrow-raising decision to put its long range missile defense eggs in a Chinese basket,... Read More
Recent events in Egypt provide significant food for thought for China policy idealists and realists. The liberal West’s chosen panacea for China—millions of young people taking to the streets and voicing democratic slogans—produced an embarrassing military coup and an appalling massacre in Egypt. If news reports can be trusted, there is a distinct lack of... Read More
I saw this billboard while motoring through the LA suburbs. The sentiment is not drive-off-the-road gobsmacking, but it provided considerable food for thought. Wonder if the Corps would celebrate its respect for “Caucasian” or “African-American” values.* Unlikely, because attributing certain “values” to racial groups is, well, racist. I assume the idea is to characterize “Hispanics”... Read More
The Syrian revolution—a broad-based, non-sectarian, democratic anti-despot national movement—has failed. Mass demonstrations never materialized in Damascus and Aleppo. The military and security forces didn’t crack. The Alawite on Sunni crackdown (Alawites form the backbone of the army/security forces/irregular goon squads) fomented sectarian divisions, with most non-Sunnis minorities cleaving desperately to the Assad regime. Prosperous Sunnis... Read More
...and what that might have to do with Israel attacking a Turkish cruise ship in international waters
I premised my writing on the whole Iran/nuclear/sanctions/NPT imbroglio with the ideas that: A. The Obama administration wants to restructure its global security doctrine around joint action to nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament through a revitalized NPT; B. To bring Israel (and India and Pakistan) in the tent, it was necessary to show that multi-lateral do-goodery... Read More
Update If the U.S. can't sabotage the ITB agreement, it will do its best to ignore it. According to the Guardian. Hmmm. I would speculate that the United States was very anxious to get this draft circulated in order to counteract the news of the ITB agreement. So maybe some hurried caving in to Chinese... Read More
The United States Responds to the Turkey/Brazil/Iran Deal with Dismay, Denial, Deafness, Willful Misunderstanding, and the Occasional Malapropism
The deal for to provide fuel plates for the Tehran Research Reactor, brokered by Turkey and Brazil, has been signed. The deal threatens to derail the push for Iran sanctions, which is apparently the be-all and end-all of America's strategy. No question what Turkey--a non-permanent member of the Security Council this year--thinks: The Washington Post's... Read More
In light of Secretary Clinton's determined effort to forestall a Iran nuclear deal brokered by Turkey (see below), I think it's pretty clear that Iran is desperate for a deal and the United States is equally desperate to block one. I think the only thing that could have persuaded Turkey's Prime Minister Erdogan to turn... Read More
The U.S. is apparently dead serious about shutting off Iran's avenues of negotiation. Case in point: putting the kibosh on Turkey's initiative to midwife the LEU for fuel plates swap for the Tehran Research Reactor. Courtesy of Hurriyet/AFP, the tick-tock is reproduced below. I would think it would be difficult for the United States to... Read More
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