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Turkey Calls Trump's Bluff
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      Turkey has just called Donald Trump’s bluff by going ahead with the purchase of Russian S-400 anti-aircraft missiles. The outrage in Washington is volcanic. Trump is vowing to rain fire and brimstone sanctions down on the disobedient Turks.

      The S-400 is Russia’s premier anti-air missile. It is believed highly effective against all forms of aircraft – including stealth planes – cruise missiles, medium range ballistic missiles, drones, and some other types of missiles. It offers the choice of a self-directing version with its own radar seeker, or a less expensive, ‘semi-active’ version that is guided by its launch-battery radar.

      What makes this AA missile (SS-21 in NATO terminology) particularly deadly is its remarkable 400 km range. The S-400 is said by Russia to be able to unmask stealth aircraft. I’ve been told by Soviet security officials as far back as 1990 that their radars could detect US stealth aircraft.

      The missile’s remarkable range and detection capability puts at risk some of the key elements of US war fighting capability, notably the E-3 AWACS airborne radar aircraft, US electronic warfare aircraft, tankers and, of course, fighters like the new stealth F-35, improved F-15’s, F-22’s and B-1, B-2 and venerable B-52 heavy bombers used to carry long-ranged cruise missiles.

      The Russian AA system can ‘shoot and scoot’ – firing and then quickly moving. Even more important, the S-400 system costs about half the price of its leading competitor, the US Patriot PAC-2 system. The S-400 may also be more reliable and accurate. The Great White Father in Washington is not happy.

      The Trump administration brought heavy pressure on Turkey not to buy the S-400, threatening to cancel Turkey’s order for 100 of the new, stealthy F-35’s. Few thought the Turks would defy the US on this issue, but they failed to understand the depths of Turkey’s anger at the US.

      Most Turks believe that the US engineered the failed 2016 coup against the democratic government in Ankara working through a shadowy religious organization run by the spiritual-political leader, Fethullah Gulen, who lives in exile in the United States. Turkey’s elected president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, had been too independent-minded for Washington, clashing over US policy to Syria and the Gulf. He had also incurred the wrath of America’s Israel lobby for demanding justice for the Palestinians.

      Turkey is now under economic attack by Washington. President Trump is threatening sanctions (read economic warfare) against Turkey, an old, loyal US ally. During the Korean War, Turkish troops saved American soldiers from Chinese encirclement. But Turks are mostly Muslim, and Muslims are hated by Trump and his allies.

      S-400 missiles are now arriving in Turkey. What will Trump do? Cancel sale to Turkey of the F-35 and other military equipment or spare parts. Threaten to oust Turkey from NATO. Get Israel and Greece to menace Turkey.

      ORDER IT NOW

      Turkey can live without the F-35. It’s too expensive and may be more vulnerable than advertised. The Turks can get similar, less expensive warplanes from Russia. India and China are both buying the S-400. Even the Saudis may join them though Moscow is delaying the sale. S-400’s are also stationed in Syria with Russian forces and are slated to go to sea in a naval version.

      If the US reacts with even more anger, Turkey could threaten to withdraw from NATO and kick the US out of its highly strategic air base in southeast Turkey at Incirlik. It’s worth recalling that Turkey provided NATO’s second largest army after the US. Someone has to remind the deeply unknowing Trump that NATO without Turkey will be declawed. Equally important, that a Turkey unconstrained by NATO membership, will seek sources of oil which it lacks and desperately needs, and new alliances.

      Only a century ago, Iraq’s rich oil fields used to be part of the Ottoman Empire until taken away by the British and French imperial powers. The days of a subservient, tame Turkey may be ending.

      (Republished from EricMargolis.com by permission of author or representative)
       
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      1. Alistair says:

        If Turkey exits the NATO, doom and gloom will follow it; the US and its European allies will never allow a large and advanced military power next door who could be hostile to Israel.

        Turkey’s shift of alliance should remind us of Iran’s shift in post 1979 Islamic revolution; like Turkey, Iran used to be an important Western ally, it had the seventh largest world military power, equipped with 500 advanced US made aircrafts that U.S and European supplied – then the Shah of Iran was supposed to provide a buffer security zone against the Soviet’s ambition in Persian Gulf, while protecting the Oil rich Arabs allies of the US and security for Israel.

        Yet, Islamic Republic put an end to all of that, and ever since, Iran and US along with the NATO members are locked in a sort of cold war which started with the bloody Iran-Iraq war in 1980-1988 and continuing to date with the proxy wars in the region.

        [MORE]

        If Turkey exit NATO, doom and gloom will follow it; the US and its European allies will never allow a large and advanced military power next door who’s hostile to Israel. Turkey will be put under severe economic sanctions, where it should not only face internal turmoil ( e.g. Kurdish separatists, Military Coups, Right wing Turkish Nationalists) but also external wars with the neighbouring countries; Greece, Ukraine and Egypt are potential candidates, while Saudis, Jordan, UAE and the rest of the US’s Arab allies would bear the financial cost of the military campaign against Turkey, Israel and NATO members provide intelligence and other military support to help disarming Turkey or at least reducing its military capabilities for good.

        Just as they did against Iranians; the aim of Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) was to reduce Iranian military capabilities – by 1990 that objective was fully achieved which had led in turn to the US-Iraq war in 1991, the objective of which was the same; to remove the risk of Iraq under Saddam Hussein, because he was no longer useful to the U.S. and certainly a threat to Israel.

        The same fate await Turkey if it leaves NATO, yet, unlike Iran, Turkey lacks islamic revolutionary aspirations, hence, the motivating factors for the young Turks – other than Turkish nationalism, nothing else motivates young Turks to abandoning the US Camp, enduring tough US sanctions and perhaps getting into regional wars. Beside unlike Iran’s strategic location, in post Soviet era, Turkey no longer offers the highly valued geopolitical assets to the NATO that once did – moreover, Turkey’s vulnerable Agri-Food and Tourist based economy is too dependent on the Europeans; in case of the US economic sanctions, Turkey will certainly fall into deep recession along with internal turmoil and perhaps regional wars with the neighbouring countries.

        Although, there is potential for new soft alliances with Russia, Iran, and China, and some other countries from around the world, but nothing comparable to the NATO which kept Turkey out of trouble over the past 70 years, in an otherwise highly unstable region.

        If Turkey exits the NATO, doom and gloom will follow it; the US and its European allies will never, NEVER allow a large advanced military power hostile to Israel in the neighbourhood.

        • Replies: @Lo
        , @RadicalCenter
      2. Heretic says:

        Turkey can afford to play hard ball. They are irreplacable as a geostrategic ally for as long as the US has interests in the middle-east and the black sea. Even Putin wants them on his side despite the plane they shot down. Unfortunately the US will not succeed to scare them or intimidate them. Make no mistake, Trump is an oportunist and a technocrat not an idealist. He will sell them the F35 anyway because money. Erdogan is playing you for fools.

        What you are not considering however is that Turkey will, without a doubt, use the F35 agaisnt Greece and Cyprus. They violate their airspace every day for decades despite both being part of NATO and had a few accidents with casualties over the years. Giving them a stealth aircraft is insane. There are natural gas deposits in Cyprus and the Aegean was always a contested sea. This could spark a war especially since Greece elected a right wing goverment.

        • Replies: @anon19
      3. Lo says:
        @Alistair

        Turkey will be put under severe economic sanctions

        This strategy works only against countries like North Korea or Venezuela. Besides, those economic sanctions for Turkey mean that economic sanctions on Iran, Russia, and China will be far less effective. You can’t apply economic sanctions on an indefinite number of countries. That aside, Turkey is a net importer with enough industries & has resources to be fully self-sufficient except for oil and gas which they can easily buy from Iran and Russia.

        where it should not only face internal turmoil ( e.g. Kurdish separatists, Military Coups, Right wing Turkish Nationalists)

        The military is cleaned out of any elements that had CIA connections. Currently, there is 0 chance of a military coup. You are confusing Turks with Arabs if you think some internal fight will start under such conditions. Even most Kurds do not support separatism, and those who do & armed are pretty much wiped out inside Turkey.

        but also external wars with the neighbouring countries; Greece, Ukraine and Egypt are potential candidates

        Don’t make me laugh. Ukraine is on the other side of the Black Sea, busy with Russia. Egypt on the other side of the Mediterranean, run by a corrupt dictatorship that is hardly suppressing its population. The only candidate is Greece, and that is because they are bankrupt & delusional that if West gives enough promises of support they might dare something crazy (though I highly doubt it, normal Greeks should know there is nothing to gain in such war). Such war would most likely end with the invasion of Greece, but there is simply nothing to be gained for any of these three countries in a war with Turkey. Should West or Israel involve in such a war, it would quickly escalate into something bigger. There are no military options against Turkey short of NATO declaring war on it.

        Just as they did against Iranians; the aim of Iran-Iraq war (1980-1988) was to reduce Iranian military capabilities – by 1990 that objective was fully achieved which had led in turn to the US-Iraq war in 1991, the objective of which was the same; to remove the risk of Iraq under Saddam Hussein, because he was no longer useful to the U.S. and certainly a threat to Israel.

        Iran had lost many officers during the revolution. Which is why they struggled at first, as new officers rose through ranks they gradually won the war. Still, Iraq had the strongest Arab army at the time. Similar conditions do not exist for Turkey. It is much larger than any of its neighbors excluding Iran, has the best equipped and trained army, and strategic location.

        The same fate await Turkey if it leaves NATO, yet, unlike Iran, Turkey lacks islamic revolutionary aspirations, hence, the motivating factors for the young Turks – other than Turkish nationalism, nothing else motivates young Turks to abandoning the US Camp

        And how do economic sanctions or war not inflame all sorts of motivations, including nationalism? You got the abandoning US part also wrong, normally there would be no motivations for Turks to abandon the US camp. However, people who have no understanding of strategy and nations they deal with created all sorts of motivations for Turks to abandon the US camp (or likelier, for Israel’s safety they want to create an independent Kurdish state, and they don’t think about anything else when it’s Israel’s security).

        Beside unlike Iran’s strategic location, in post Soviet era, Turkey no longer offers the highly valued geopolitical assets to the NATO that once did – moreover, Turkey’s vulnerable Agri-Food and Tourist based economy is too dependent on the Europeans

        Russians wish all US strategists thought like you, and to their enjoyment, they are. Enjoy getting locked out of the Black Sea, giving Russia full security in the south so that they can fully focus on their West. Not to mention if Russia, Iran, and Turkey cooperate in ME it is unlikely West can win. Just to be sure, Europeans are not supporting a major conflict with Turkey. A large portion of their energy comes through Turkey, not to mention there is a lot of industrial cooperation, food trade, and Turkey holding back 5 million refugees. Turkey’s economy isn’t just agri-food or tourist based today, you are stuck in the past. Besides, agricultural goods are the easiest to sell in today’s world. It would just mean cheaper foods for everyone else who buys from Turkey. Tourism industry might be damaged, though it is dependent on the type of sanctions or troubles. Europeans pretty much ignore American warnings when it comes to travel. Unless their governments ban travel to Turkey or start a war, the tourism sector would not get a major dent.

        Turkey will certainly fall into deep recession along with internal turmoil and perhaps regional wars with the neighbouring countries.

        Turkey is not Venezuela. It has industries & resources to sustain itself, especially when you consider crazies are sanctioning everyone, trading with Iran & Russia would just explode. No internal turmoil possibility, only destabilizing factors were CIA assets & Kurdish separatists. Former are mostly jailed or kicked out, latter is a minority and have very little firepower (except in Syria, where terrorists are supported by the former allies of Turkey). Regular Kurds do not seek to start a civil war. No neighboring country wants or can afford a war with Turkey, Greece is bankrupt & might be convinced if NATO promises active support, but without NATO actively declaring war on Turkey, Greece would not dare a war. And honestly, why should they unless they are insane, there is nothing to gain. Losing the war means losing large parts of Greece, winning the war means millions of more refugees.

        Although, there is potential for new soft alliances with Russia, Iran, and China, and some other countries from around the world, but nothing comparable to the NATO which kept Turkey out of trouble over the past 70 years, in an otherwise highly unstable region.

        NATO didn’t keep Turkey out of trouble. There were CIA supported coups with the most recent being in 2016, economic and military sanctions, destruction of its trading partners, and endless support for terrorists, not to mention globalist supported perversion. Instability is a region is a function of NATO-Zio involvement, Iraq war, Syrian war, Iran, Kurdish separatism, and more. It is strange to claim that NATO kept Turkey out of instability while NATO was the source of the said instability.

        In the end, neither Turkey nor the US/Europe are winners in an escalating conflict. In the long term, however, Turkey will benefit as its economy & institutions adjust. Russia would be the winners from the beginning to the end. Besides, Turkey does not ask for some crazy capitulations. Its requests are pretty simple; border and air security, cooperation against terrorism. Considering how belligerent the US has been (not wanting to sell missile defense until after Turkey bought from Russia, preventing purchase from China previously, supporting PKK extensions in Syria, supporting a coup, harboring the leader of the coup, siding with a government that murdered a journalist in their country and so on…) how else should Turkey respond? It is very strange to actively undermine a country and then when they respond, to threaten if they don’t allow themselves to be undermined, they will be further undermined. This is not how sane people or governments act.

        • Replies: @Alistair
        , @The Alarmist
      4. A123 says:

        Turkey could threaten to withdraw from NATO and kick the US out of its highly strategic air base in southeast Turkey at Incirlik.

        Highly strategic for what? Operations in northern Syria. If you recall, Trump already tried to withdraw U.S. forces from that theatre, but was blocked by the establishment deep state. One can almost visualize Trump as Brer Rabbit shouting, “Farmer Erdogan, don’t throw us out of that base into the Briar Patch !”

        Trump is intentionally maneuvering Erdogan into undercutting the deep staters in the Pentagon and State Dept. Without Incirlik, the Obama holdovers will no longer be able to maintain logistical support to the troops that Trump wants to withdraw.
        _____

        NATO and “The Warsaw Pact” are relics built on the false assumption that Russia and the U.S. must be Cold War enemies. In the modern world — Tthe Christian U.S. and Christian Russia have many common interests where they should work together. In a perfect world Trump would withdraw from NATO, allowing it to follow the Warsaw Pact into the dust bin of history.

        PEACE

        • Agree: anon19
        • Replies: @Lo
      5. Lo says:
        @A123

        Trump is intentionally maneuvering Erdogan into undercutting the deep staters in the Pentagon and State Dept. Without Incirlik, the Obama holdovers will no longer be able to maintain logistical support to the troops that Trump wants to withdraw.

        Do you actually think Trump has a clue about these subjects? He was more than happy to withdraw troops when Erdogan offered that Turkey could wipe out ISIS. Then Bolton and Neocons got in the way and prevented any withdrawal. Instead, they are bringing other NATO countries to the North of Syria. The end goal of Zionists is the establishment of a Kurdish state, preferably with sea access. This, of course, has nothing to do with the interests of the US or anyone but Israelis. Incirlik may or may not have strategical importance depending on whether the US can establish another base nearby. In other words, Zionists are making the US gamble big time for no reason, if their gambit fails the US will be increasingly irrelevant in ME within a decade with only footholds remaining in Israel and Arabian peninsula, and it is almost certain that Saudi monarchy will collapse within the next 15 years.

        It is almost as if enemies are planning the US ME policy, then again, it is the truth.

      6. Alistair says:
        @Lo

        I really appreciate your analysis, and I hope you’re right, but we shouldn’t forget about the core objectives.

        Often wars in the Middle East are products of “Conflicts Engineering” by superpowers for their own strategic objectives; that was certainly the case for Iraq and Syria, in both cases, one of the objectives was to weaken these states, so to remove their potential risks to the state of Israel.

        As such, the objectives were to make Israel as powerful as it could be – by holding its adversaries back through Imposition of War of Attrition – so hindering their social and economic development and of course their military balance of power; so much so, that Israel would maintain asymmetric relationship with their adversaries; like the ones Israel has with Egypt and Jordan, both countries were at one point at war with Israel but relentless economic sanctions, useless military conflicts among themselves, and CIA Engineered coups and other political and economic pressures had gotten them to come to a forced settlement with Israel; that was certainly the case for Jordan, Egypt and Lebanon.

        Often countries are pitted against each other with no apparent reasons; for instance, the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980’s, or Iraq Invasion of Kuwait in 1990 which initiated the UN/US war against Iraq in 1991, or more recently the Saudis blockade of Qatar in 2018, or the Saudis-UAE military operations in Yemen; none of these conflicts make any sense, at all, yet real people are actually dying and their precious national resources are being wasted in defending themselves in the “Engineered Conflicts” where they have no choice but to endure.

        I hope you’re right, I really do, but the evil has its own objectives that is not so apparent to others.

        • Replies: @Lo
        , @Colin Wright
      7. Lo says:
        @Alistair

        Often wars in the Middle East are products of “Conflicts Engineering” by superpowers for their own strategic objectives; that was certainly the case for Iraq and Syria

        Let’s not forget Arabs did not have a serious state in their history. Both Umayyad & Abbasid dynasties were relatively short-lived & institutions were largely controlled by Turks and Iranians (with Turks taking over army and Iranians running bureaucracy). All modern Arab states are basically states created by rulers and pencils arbitrarily. It is easy to engineer conflict in these places that are stuck in tribalism, religious differences, and ignorance. Turkey’s population is about 80% ethnic Turkish, with only a minority of Kurds seeking separation among other minorities. There is no Sunni-Shia conflict, there are Alawites (largely Turkish) but they are farther from Shias than Sunnis are. There is also no dictatorship, despite Zio press trying to convince everyone otherwise, just recently Erdogan’s party lost all three major cities in local elections. So, I don’t really see how it would be possible to engineer conflict at this point internally. One possibility would be successfully pulling a coup using CIA assets, and then starting genocidal policies against Kurds (to start a civil war). But that option has already been tried, and the CIA failed, and their assets either escaped the country or are in jails (this is why you see a lot of news about political & journalist prisoners in Turkey).

        There is only one superpower in the world currently, that is the US with China being a contender. Short of declaring war, I don’t think the US has any options left (that would not harm US interests more than it would help). The US can follow up with economic sanctions, but as I said, it would only reduce US influence and credibility at this point and would be a boon to Iran and Russia (not to mention further irritating Europeans, they are actually getting quite sick of the belligerent US Zionists damaging the region). A Turkey that is sanctioned is a huge gift to America’s enemies & from that point onward the US would rapidly lose influence in the ME & Russia would be able to put its all weight on the Western front (Syria & Iraq would be immediate losses). All of this not to mean Turkey would be unscathed, however, any short term victory the US can gain would be a Pyrrhic victory in the end.

        • Replies: @Colin Wright
        , @Anon
      8. I don’t like Erdogan, I think he’s a despot, but I applaud him for this. Who wants to buy that American garbage? It saddens me as an American to admit that our weapons manufacturers are motivated mostly by greed but Russia’s seem to have some patriotism. In my view, ripping off the taxpayers and providing substandard weaponry is tantamount to treason. Trump needs to do to the weapons oligarchs what Putin did to the Western-backed profiteers in Russia.

        • Replies: @Lo
        , @Jason Liu
        , @foolisholdman
      9. Lo says:
        @Fidelios Automata

        In my view, ripping off the taxpayers and providing substandard weaponry is tantamount to treason.

        There are a lot more treasonous things going on. I wish that providing cost/efficiency poor weaponry was the only issue. You could at least call that a planning mistake or over-engineering.

      10. Krollchem says:

        Minor correction:

        The S-400 export version has a range of 250 km vs the Russian Army version of 400 km. Then again Iran could engineer missiles with a longer range.

        Another key to the s-400 is its radar system which could be used to track targets which could then be targeted with longer range missiles such as the S-200.

      11. @Lo

        Let’s not forget Arabs did not have a serious state in their history. Both Umayyad & Abbasid dynasties were relatively short-lived…’

        That statement’s ill-advised. Short-lived as compared to what?

        America’s reign as a global power, perhaps?

        Pride of place, of course, has to be ceded to Rome, but by your yardstick, not many folks have had a ‘serious state’ in their history. How many other states have exerted hegemony over as large a territory as the Abbasids, for example, for as long?

        • Replies: @Lo
      12. @Alistair

        ‘…the evil has its own objectives that is not so apparent to others.’

        I’m not sure ‘evil’ is actually the most useful paradigm to employ here — not that what’s going on isn’t evil, just that it’s not necessarily illuminating to apply the label.

        I think it’s more helpful to realize that when people start doing things that appear incredibly stupid, maybe you’re failing to to correctly understand their objective.

        For example, we invade Iraq — but insist on using an occupation force only as third as large as the Pentagon advises, then on disbanding the Iraqi Army and turning the soldiers loose with their weapons, and then finally on dismantling the whole Iraqi state.

        Gee — Iraq collapses into bloody chaos.

        So maybe that was the intention.

        Ditto in Syria. It all didn’t work — but we started arming both Kurdish separatists and Islamic fundamentalists.

        So…think we were trying to create a more stable, more unified, more democratic Syria — or maybe we were trying to permanently destroy any hope of a unified Syrian state of any kind?

        People are usually reasonably intelligent. You need to credit them with that intelligence — then infer their motives.

        • Agree: AnonStarter, RobinG
        • Replies: @Alistair
      13. Lo says:
        @Colin Wright

        As compared to many other nations that exist today. Both of these two Arabic empires were short-lived and only Umayyad Dynasty was fully Arab & collapsed thanks to Persian rebellion soon after Persians became Muslim, the Abbasid rule was mostly symbolic over those lands which had practically independent rulers. The rapid growth of the Arab empire was thanks to the long stalemate of Romans and Persians and the resulting power vacuum combined with the new moral supremacy they obtained due to Islam. Before that, they were largely disunited tribes busy looting caravans and trading with more advanced civilizations. It is not to humiliate Arabs, however, compared to Turks or Iranians their statecraft is very short, and it ceased existing for over 500 years before the Ottoman Empire collapsed. The US has been a superpower shorter than Arabs, its superpower status has little to do with skillful state-crafting and more to do with geography. Perhaps that’s why as Europe recovered from WW2 and Asia started catching up, the US politicians kept doing mistake after mistake. In any case, handling of affairs with Turkey had been disastrous and unless the US wanted to push Turkey to the camp it considers opposite for some incomprehensible reason, I don’t see how it could be considered smart foreign policy.

      14. Jason Liu says:

        What is Trump’s problem with Turkey anyway? Erdogan is a right wing authoritarian and should be a natural friend in the fight against global liberalism. Is it just because they’re Muslim?

        • Replies: @foolisholdman
      15. Jason Liu says:
        @Fidelios Automata

        Erdogan is far from a despot. Strongman at best. Don’t buy into bullshit in western news sourced from liberal Turks.

        • Replies: @Peter Akuleyev
      16. The breakdown in relations between Washington and Ankara illustrates how alliances – always trumpeted as being based upon principles and shared values – are built upon national interest. When Turkey shot down the Russian Sukhoi SU-24 jet in 2015 diplomatic relations with Moscow took a nosedive. Now they are allies, with Turkey purchasing the advanced air defence system and now NATO member in name only. One of Ankara’s vital interests is new ‘sources of oil which it lacks and desperately needs…’
        https://www.ghostsofhistory.wordpress.com/

      17. @Fidelios Automata

        In my view, ripping off the taxpayers and providing substandard weaponry is tantamount to treason. Trump needs to do to the weapons oligarchs what Putin did to the Western-backed profiteers in Russia.

        I think just the reverse. Providing sub-standard weapons to an aggressive dysfunctional state like ZUSA which is facing NO THREAT AT ALL is highly commendable, Long may they continue to do so! The biggest danger to the world at the moment is that the warmongers and military in Washington might think that they could win WW3 (which is, of course, in the nature of things, impossible.) So the longer they rip off the US public and produce obvious junk, the better for the rest of the World.

        • Replies: @anon
      18. @Jason Liu

        What is Trump’s problem with Turkey anyway? Erdogan is a right wing authoritarian and should be a natural friend in the fight against global liberalism. Is it just because they’re Muslim?

        No. They are sometimes a bit pro-Palestinian. An unforgivable crime.

      19. @Lo

        ‘…The rapid growth of the Arab empire was thanks to the long stalemate of Romans and Persians and the resulting power vacuum combined with the new moral supremacy they obtained due to Islam…’

        I’ve always found this somewhat unconvincing.

        First off, great conquests almost invariably occur under fortuitous circumstances. America rose to hegemony in a world in which all possible competitors had been devastated or bankrupted by the most destructive war in human history. The Spanish swept over the New World in the wake of diseases that decimated and disrupted the successive civilizations they encountered. Hitler took advantage of a world where those potentially capable of restraining him were terrified by the thought of another war.

        Etc. So the Arabs erupted into a world marked by exhausted Roman and Persian empires. So?

        They embarked on a career of conquest that within century took them from the Atlantic to Central Asia — and to this day, the cultures in those lands show their impact.

        It was one of the greatest feats of conquest in human history — more far-reaching than that of the Romans, and more enduring and profound than that of the Mongols.

        The question becomes: why the need to denigrate it?

        • Replies: @Lo
      20. @Lo

        ‘As compared to many other nations that exist today. Both of these two Arabic empires were short-lived… ‘

        Here we’re going to drift into matters of definition.

        Is it to be endurance as a state or the span of time there was a globe-spanning empire? There’s been a ‘French’ state in one sense or another since Clovis — that would be over fifteen hundred years. On the other hand, France only ruled a truly impressive global empire from the latter part of the nineteenth century to the middle of the twentieth — less than a hundred years.

        That’d be about the length of the Abbasids’ moment in the sun. However, there’s been a state that regards itself as Arabic, speaks Arabic, and practices Islam in Morocco for a good twelve hundred years now — and for most of that time, that state has been either formally or virtually independent of outside control. The Ottomans were only able to claim a kind of suzerainty, and the French only managed to gain a tenuous control of it for seventy years or so.

        What are you claiming? Depending on what you mean by ‘Arabs,’ Arabs are obviously capable of forming very long-lasting states. If instead, you are demanding globe-straddling empires, well, the Romans aside, those have rarely lasted. I mean, lessee here.

        Rome: as the unchallenged ruler of the Mediterranean basin, about four hundred-five hundred years.

        Spain: ruler of a vast overseas empire. Say, 1565 to 1825. 260 years.

        England. From Plassy to Indian independence. Just under two hundred years.

        France. 1880’s to 1962. 80 years.

        The US. 1945 to about…now. Seventy five years.

        Russia. I’d go with 1949 to the breach with China. Fifteen years? She never did quite do in the Turks, for example.

        The Mongols. Genghis Khan’s lifetime.

        Obviously, this could be qualified, expanded, altered, etc — but for gargantuan empires, that century-plus of first the Umayyads and then the Abbasids (they were all Arabs, and are we going to distinguish between the various phases of the Roman polity) starts to look pretty typical, while if we’re talking about merely establishing enduring states, well…

      21. Anon[117] • Disclaimer says:
        @Lo

        Turkey will be sanctioned But the benefit to US will be marginal and negative . Nationalism in Turkey will mix with Islamism of various shades . The combinations will be worse in terms of generation of enduring hostility to US .
        The lobby that is preventing the US’s changing its course will benefit They also will tell the FOX viewers, once the damages become obvious for US, that American leaders did not listen to the advice offered by the neocons .The same lies they traded on for reality check on the FOX about Bush would reappear. A damaged US will see the new alignments in ME . Powerful Turkey , Israel ,Iran, Russia, China coming to table and organizing ME for themselves . Israel will lose because the free hand it enjoyed for 80 years will be cut to serve other countries interests also. Poor America will return to where it belonged to pre 1870.

        Turkey has seen enough of betrayal —

        “I still remember the last day. Our tough negotiations with the Iranian team, together with my colleague Celso Amorim, foreign minister of Brazil, lasted 17 hours without break. We had informed the US about our efforts and intention to settle the dispute.
        After long and cumbersome negotiations, we reached a deal on 16 May 2010. We expected a positive response from Washington, but the Obama administration rebuffed the deal, only because it wasn’t achieved by the P5+1.— https://www.middleeasteye.net/big-story/obama-trump-lessons-challenges

        • Replies: @Lo
      22. anon[117] • Disclaimer says:
        @foolisholdman

        One more reason for Turkey to get pissed off

        “One is the series of serious strategic and political missteps taken by Erdogan and his team, centering on (but not limited to) the disastrous decision they took in August 2011 to buy into Barack Obama’s call for the overthrow of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad.— https://lobelog.com/global-power-shifts-sparked-in-syrian-hornets-nest/

        Empire is trying to achieve a lot on the cheap ( on the cheap blood of Muslims ) China is being hounded on the economic scope ( Huwaei Tariff) Democracy expansion ( Honk Kong ) , and territorial integrity ( Uighurs Muslims ) issue . China if not stupid will see what is at stake . This will prevent it from losing Turkey Iran and Pakistan . Emergence of a new block with Russia –China being the US and these Muslim countries being the Europeans counterpart in that relationship is now hard to prevent .

        • Replies: @Lo
        , @CharlesDS79
      23. Lo says:
        @anon

        One is the series of serious strategic and political missteps taken by Erdogan and his team, centering on (but not limited to) the disastrous decision they took in August 2011 to buy into Barack Obama’s call for the overthrow of Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad

        This was one of the biggest strategic blunders of this century so far. But if an uneducated guy like me could reason that causing havoc in a neighboring country would only damage their own interests, they have no one to blame but themselves. I mean, how stupid you can be to believe that America would plan anything other than what Israel wants.

        China if not stupid will see what is at stake

        The Chinese leadership is not stupid. The Turkish leadership is. Which is why Turkey is now encircled by enemies, stuck with millions of refugees and a failed foreign policy that is highly incapacitated by empty faith instead of reason.

      24. Lo says:
        @Anon

        Well, let’s not just blame the US only. The US didn’t assign an idiot like Ahmet Davutoglu to manage Turkey’s foreign policy. As far as I know, every policy he crafted has failed. The guy lives in a separate universe where everyone is so eager to accept Turkish intrusion. The reality is far from that (but why reject it if it means stupids are willing to make their people suffer for the issues of Arabs). The article you posted, I quickly glanced, don’t have time to read failed idiots trying to shift blame. It basically is a confession of all his failures. While the US ME policy is not independent and harmful to its interests, no one forced Turkey to destabilize Syria. Had they been competent and somewhat intelligent, they could simply refuse to take such actions, cooperate with Syria before which they had good relations, prevent civil war, avoid millions of refugees and so on. It really wasn’t difficult to foresee this mess.

        • Replies: @anon
        , @Alistair
      25. Herzog says:

        O Turkey, you mighty superpower! O Turkey, you land of the meek and innocent! O Turkey, you country of strong industries and a hard currency! O Turkey, you land of non-massacre, of ethnic and religious justice! O Turkey, you ever-maligned and patiently suffering friend of all humankind!

        • Replies: @Colin Wright
      26. Lo says:
        @Colin Wright

        I can go into all sorts of details but it would be too long. No one is denigrating anything, it is the truth that soon after Persians and Turks became Muslim they pretty much overtook the business of running the Arab state. Only serious conquests they managed on their own were the conquest of Spain & Iran. They stalemated with Eastern Romans and were slowly but consistently losing territories they gained even in ME by the time Seljuks came. Regardless, even if everything I said is wrong, it is still undeniable that they didn’t have states for over 500 years before Ottomans collapsed and if you would like to challenge that too, then explaining why they so incompetently run their states and no one takes them seriously is on you. I mean, almost all major Arab states today are failed dictatorships that can’t even handle tiny Israel. If that is not the proof of lack state-crafting capability then I don’t know what could be.

        • Disagree: Colin Wright
        • Replies: @Colin Wright
      27. @Herzog

        ‘O Turkey, you mighty superpower! O Turkey, you land of the meek and innocent! O Turkey, you country of strong industries and a hard currency! O Turkey, you land of non-massacre, of ethnic and religious justice! O Turkey, you ever-maligned and patiently suffering friend of all humankind!’

        It is a pretty nice place, but this is going a bit too far.

        The biggest problem I see with it is that when the weather’s nice there, it’s nice where I live, and when it sucks here, it sucks there.

        …also, no cheap wine! $5.00 a glass? Am I in Germany?

      28. Remember when Trump was America First?

        That was a long time ago.

      29. anon[117] • Disclaimer says:
        @Lo

        We hear this argument that “no one forced Turkey to destabilize Syria”
        One can shift the theater to any other geography and come out with totally opposite opinion . Was Saddam forced to attack Iran? You bet , he was
        Is Columbia being forced by US to attack Venezuela ? Yes
        Was Kenya and Ethiopia forced to attack Somali? Yes.
        Is Saudi Arabia being forced to stand up against Iran ? Yes .
        Yes S Kore a being forced against N Korea ? Yes .

        Once they agree, they change the tunes and accept the logics offered by US. That’s what Saudi did in 2006 against Iran.
        Is Pakistan being punished now because of tiredness in attacking Taliban and in not cutting ties with China? Yes.
        Was Turkey thretend in 2003 for not accepting US attack on Iraq and for not supporting the troop deployment ? Yes.

        Now you come and tell me” no one forced Turkey to destabilize Syria”
        About 2011 , go and dig out the articles that appeared in common dreams That was not written by any Turkey guy.

        • Replies: @Lo
      30. @Lo

        ‘I mean, almost all major Arab states today are failed dictatorships that can’t even handle tiny Israel.’

        Ironically, your assertion fails to fit (draws breath) Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, or Saudi Arabia.

        It does fit Egypt, Syria, Libya, and Yemen. I suppose you can have Sudan as ‘an Arab state’ if you must. However, even here it’s worth noting that two of the four/five — Egypt and Syria — are only ‘failed dictatorships’ by virtue of the machinations of Israel herself. For Syria, see Hillary Clinton’s emails, while Israel herself has boasted of her role in overthrowing Morsi.

        So…two to five out of twelve or thirteen. Even for a generalization, that’s not so hot.

        You may well hate Arabs, Islam, or some combination thereof. However, don’t try to fabricate a reality to fit your prejudices. I’ll call you on it.

        • Replies: @Lo
        , @Talha
      31. APilgrim says:

        President Trump is not bluffing.

        So, there’s that.

      32. Lo says:
        @anon

        Do not blame others for the incompetence of the Turkish government. If you argue that they were forced by the US (they were not, encouraged yes, forced no, if Turkish FM wasn’t a fool Syria wouldn’t happen), then how can they suddenly resist American demands today? Face it, they fancied themselves as Ottomans, Ahmet Davutoglu imagined himself to be a new Metternich (he reminds me John Bolton a lot, both imagine life will work like the academic theories they’ve studied), and AKP government dreamed they could quickly get rid of Assad with the help of the US and act high and mighty knowing they installed a Sunni government.

        The truth is, they blundered big time. Millions of Arabs now live in Turkey while Turkish soldiers die to defend Arab cities in Syria & many have died for a war that could never start. It was obvious from the start that the US would not support any plans that would work against Israel’s interests, if you don’t even understand that, you have no business running foreign policy. Now reality hits them and they are all over the place. I might think they might have learned that faith is often wrong against science, but it would be overestimating their capability.

        • Replies: @Anon
      33. Lo says:
        @Colin Wright

        I don’t hate Arabs or anyone else for that matter. I can expand on my original post but it is not needed. Almost all countries you listed are either dictatorships or tribal states. Saudi Arabia? Iraq? One is a repressive dictatorship that export terrorism the other’s dictator was just overthrown due to Iraq War. All in all, a few million Jews handle 200+ million Arabs. Which really, would not be my business, except thanks to the Semitic mind virus religions, everyone else gets so hyped up about their issues and the constant threat of war lurks in ME. Tell me why should Iranians, Turks or Americans suffer or worse go to war for Semites? Particularly while the richest Arab countries do not care about Palestine? And if they cannot even unite and handle their own matters, why should anyone respect them or consider that they know how to run a state? I do not think they deserve respect (and Trump makes it very clear, if you haven’t been paying attention, he openly humiliates Arab leaders every time they meet), particularly considering they are even hostile against Iran & Turkey, only two countries that give a rats ass about Palestine. I do not think these two countries should risk anything for Arabs who cannot even separate their enemies from their friends apparently.

        • Replies: @anon
      34. @Jason Liu

        Bullshit. Erdogan is an Islamist who fosters radical Islam among the Turkish immigrants in Europe and sees the Turkish diaspora as leverage he can use against the West. He is in every sense an enemy of both Christian and Liberal Europe.

        • Replies: @RadicalCenter
      35. Anon[167] • Disclaimer says:
        @Lo

        Oh , yeah ! Bla bla . Don’t blame USA! Now USA has been threatening sanction against India , China, Turkey of sanction if they went ahead with Ss-400. That’s not forcing ! That’s

        love !

        “. It was obvious from the start that the US would not support any plans that would work against Israel’s interests, if you don’t even understand that, you have no business running foreign policy. ”

        Oh yeah ! This fucking country has been trying from 1940 to mold Syria to its image of a gangster vassal country using various countries in the area over that many decades , — it seems your knowledge of history is not much different from the pervert loyalty of love of Bolton for Israel .

        It’s not foreign policy of US . It is the licking habit of the dog . It is ingratiating habit of USA . It is total surrender of USA to Israel, It is not Israeki interest . It is the comparable to the ever enlarging universe expansion kind of phenomena . Israeli interest never settles down. Address their security , those bastards want more . Israel is there to be deified , licked , touched with reverence , anointed with new oil everyday , and praised but not understood or analysed . USA obliges all the time dutifully like a pristitute .

        ” Now reality hits them and they are all over the place. I might think they might have learned that faith is often wrong against science, but it would be overestimating their capability.” – apply that to yourself and to the Jew sucking American citizen who support the dirty American priest while praying to Jesus with the science book of Old Testament . The it stupid faith that mix with vulgarized American politics , bribed leadership , brainwashed honest sheep everyday .

      36. anon[167] • Disclaimer says:
        @Lo

        Your poor history knowledge tells me that you don’t understand much here about ME .
        Turkey and Iran were destroyed by the west including US . Saudi Arab , UAE Jordan Kuwaut are the creations by the same west .
        The day they will be able to make Trump behave is the day tafter the regimes get new rulers raised and grown from the desert and not imported from DC or London.

        Trump kowtows to Saudi ,behaves like a beggar . But that’s a different story .

      37. @Lo

        There are no military options against Turkey short of NATO declaring war on it.

        There was an old Cold-War 1.0 joke: If the Soviet Union attacks Turkey from the rear, do you think Greece will help?

        I guess the new joke is to replace “Soviet Union” with “NATO,” and the answer is unambiguously affirmative. Fortunately for the Greeks, Turkish Döner and Baklava aren’t radically different to their current Greek implementations.

        It does beg the question, if NATO attacks Turkey on any front, does Article 5 mandate that NATO come to the aid of Turkey to fend off NATO? Think of the millions of Turks abroad, and that question starts to seem less absurd: This would be the death of NATO, assuming it survives expulsion of or withdrawl by Turkey.

        Given Article 5, Turkey doesn’t have much time left in NATO anyway, given Israel’s history and propensity to launch preëmptive strikes.

        • Replies: @anon
      38. anon[117] • Disclaimer says:
        @The Alarmist

        all these point to one thing even from the most positive perspective that one can have about USA that is USA is losing . NK Venezuela China Russia Syria Afghanistan Iraq and Iran even Qatar S Korea Hungary and even Italy and India show the responses to the gradient of disappearing US power leverage and influence. Threat is all US is left to to utter . The pinnacle of love that USA saw in 1948 was repeated again in 1991 But the history of post 1948 was not immediately known as it is now . US got away with peddling rubbish as facts .

        Then came 2003 . Humpty Dumpty of truth couldn’t’ be put back on the saddle of ignorance any more. On one side information is reaching each atom on the earth On another side, those foreign countries are seeing that in this struggle between US -barbarism and civilization lies the destiny of humanity .

      39. Talha says:
        @Colin Wright

        You stated:

        You may well hate Arabs, Islam, or some combination thereof.

        He answered:

        the Semitic mind virus religions

        So…draw your own conclusions.

        As far as the early Muslim conquests, Prof. David Nicolle (who has written extensively on military history of ancient and medieval eras ) stated that the early Muslim conquests are one of the most remarkable feats of military conquest by underdogs in human history.

        People often pooh pooh it by pointing out that both Persia and Byzantium had fought a recent exhaustive war. However they fail to point out that the Arabs had fought a very exhaustive civil war even more recently among themselves (the Riddah Wars) to (re)consolidate control of the Arabian peninsula. Not only that, there were even multiple civil wars fought within the Muslims (like the civil war between Caliph Ali [ra] and Emir Mu’awiyah [ra], and the battles against the Khawarij). And in each battle against their Persian and Byzantine foes, they were outnumbered and under-equipped.

        A couple of the main reasons that the conquests were successful and endured are; 1) there was quite a bit of discontent within the subjects of the two empires (there was quite a bit of defection, even from groups like the elite Perisan asawira units and entire governorates) and 2) the early Muslims kept quite a lot of the state structure intact including everything from who was employed, language of records, even horse-breeding programs, etc.

        As far as later administrations (post-Rashidun), well the Arab-supremacist Umayyads collapsed relatively quickly in the East and much of the rule was taken over by discontent Persian (and other) mawalis with an Arab veneer (basically the Abbassids). Basically, their reliance on the native non-Arab peoples (many of them converting over time) was crucial.

        Even the famous Barmakid family that helped organizing the Abbasid administration were former Buddhists from Afghanistan. And as the son of the famous Harun ar-Rashid stated; “The Persians ruled for a thousand years and did not need us Arabs even for a day. We have been ruling them for one or two centuries and cannot do without them for an hour.”

        You are correct in asserting that a lot of the failures of many of the current Arab regimes is due to outside influence, though they aren’t necessarily all that competent themselves. I think it was really stupid of them to help the British dismantle the Ottoman Empire who were the formal guardians of that region and gave thousands of their lives in protecting it, but that’s water under the bridge at this point.

        You also forgot Oman (most people do because of their Ibadi tradition) which is fairly well run. The charge that Arabs have military dictatorships can simply be dismissed. Military dictatorships can be well-run or poorly run – the Mamluks (a military dictatorship composed of state-owned slaves) ran Egypt quite well in their heyday. In fact, it is a much bigger indictment if democracies fail to consistently deliver what most of the citizenship want.

        Peace.

        • Replies: @Colin Wright
        , @Lo
      40. @Talha

        ‘…I think it was really stupid of them to help the British dismantle the Ottoman Empire who were the formal guardians of that region and gave thousands of their lives in protecting it, but that’s water under the bridge at this point…’

        Here, I’d comment that by the beginning of the twentieth century, my impression at least is the Ottoman Empire really was shot.

        Reading about affairs in Syria and Iraq, for example, the picture isn’t so much of the Ottomans as being rulers so much as being the biggest dog on the block. They don’t rule; they extort and rob with greater success than anyone else, and can still intimidate potential rivals. They play off one group against the other: for example, they encourage the Kurds to massacre the Armenians.

        So there wasn’t much left worth saving. I don’t think clinging to the remnants of the Ottoman state would actually have been much of an improvement over the historical course of events. If anything, attempting to ape the West, etc was part of a necessary process that the Arabs have to go through in order to come up with a new synthesis.

        This is why I tend to be very sympathetic to groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Iran’s (not Arab, I know) Islamic Republic. They may or may not be satisfactory solutions in themselves, but they are progressive in the most fundamental sense of being an attempt to find a way forward, to move on from the wreckage of the past towards some new formula that will work.

        Since — unlike others — I’m not too worried about the threat of Sharia law coming to Oregon, it’s secondary to me if this formula is something I would choose. I’m not choosing it; they are, and I genuinely hope they come up with something that works and are able to develop it without interference from the outside.

        • Replies: @Talha
        , @Lo
      41. The majority of Turks think that America was behind the coup because Erdogan and his friends control the media and that was the message they pumped out immediately after the coup. In my opinion, this was an attempt to help people forget that it was Erdogan and his clowns who brought the Gulenist creeps into the government (they really are creeps save for a few dozen useful idiots). Actually, I would argue that if Turkey isn’t kicked out of NATO, who could be? The Turks are / have ethnically cleansed section of Syria of Kurds while transplanting Sunni Arab nut jobs into the region. They’ve aided and abetted Al-Qaeda and repeatedly acted as air support for ISIS whenever they were engaging the Kurds.
        I think that one of the only thing that has saved Erdogan in Europe is that his urging Turks to get involved in politics while not assimilating – in other words acting as a sort of Turkish / Islamist 3rd column – was ignored by the EU leaders because they were afraid of handing a giant pile of firewood to far-right parties. They chose instead to forbid AKP officials from campaigning in the EU without ever explaining why, which then just lead Erdogan to claim victim status.
        In an interview with DW, the Turkish foreign minister insisted that EU countries had supported the coup. When repeatedly pressed to say which countries, he refused while continuing to insist that this was true.
        Meanwhile, the Turkish economic gains of the past 15 years were largely based on the opening of the economy to foreign investment while allowing EU companies to send their factories there so that Turks could do the monkey work. They never invested in R&D nor attempted to increase productivity. Emboldened by easy money, they then started to pump up a giant economic bubble which they insisted wasn’t a bubble, but the return of a great Muslim age.

        I encourage everyone to read Yeni Safak and enjoy the idiocy of the public dialogue in this shining beacon of the Islamic world and NATO.

        • Replies: @Lo
      42. @anon

        I don’t think that Erdogan needed to be convinced of overthrowing Assad, he thought it’d be easy. He protested in Libya because the Turks were doing a lot of business there. In Syria they were doing little business and he seemed to have imagined that after an easy regime change campaign he would then open the country to Turkish business.
        Also, as a Sunni, he’s happy to see a non-Sunni regime go down in flames.
        People also forget that it was Erdogan who first said “let them come” in regards to the Syrian refugees, and then having been swarmed he tried to find ways to push them on Europe. He also said that this wave of refugees would lead to the Islamization of Europe. I’m not sure if he really believes that, but I’m certain the thought of it would make him very happy.

        Funny thing about the Sunnis, they’re not resisting Israel anymore, but trying their damndest to destroy the Shia regimes that are, all the while blaming America and claiming solidarity with the Palestinians. Notice, they never bring up the war in Yemen. You’d think if the Turks were going to send ships to Palestine, they’d definitely have to send a flotilla to Yemen. Nope.

        • Replies: @anon
      43. Talha says:
        @Colin Wright

        my impression at least is the Ottoman Empire really was shot.

        Well, yeah, there was little chance of them surviving WW1 if Germany and the Austro-Hungarian Empire didn’t and even far less once the Arabs threw in their lot with the British and their promises. Again, my personal opinion is that they still would have been a better result than what came out of ashes – certainly Israel (and all the instability it has had a hand in causing) would not have been a reality without their collapse.

        If anything, attempting to ape the West, etc was part of a necessary process that the Arabs have to go through in order to come up with a new synthesis.

        That’s a good point and I guess in that, they are still behind the Turks somewhat.

        I genuinely hope they come up with something that works and are able to develop it without interference from the outside.

        Agreed.

        Peace.

      44. Lo says:
        @Talha

        So…draw your own conclusions.

        The conclusion is not that I hate religions, rather, I see the reality that they make people act irrationally. Case being Iran, Turkey or The US. None of these countries have anything to gain, Jews use Americans for their wars, Arabs use Iranians and Turks. In the case of Arabs, they aren’t even trying. Turks and Iranians willfully lose so much for defending Arabs. I will ask again, what is in it for Iran or Turkey in defending Palestine at the expense of their own respective countries? Especially while the richest Arabs are comfortable and content in Jeddah or Dubai. When you objectively look at it, the way religions cause these people to act against their own interests for the benefits of Semites look awful a lot like how viruses work.

        Muslim conquests are one of the most remarkable feats of military conquest by underdogs in human history

        No one said it was unsuccessful militarily, I stated they Arabs don’t know statecraft Colin for whatever reason insists that it is not the case. They could have learned over time, and learned from Persians and Romans in the past. However, even if they did, they didn’t run their own states for centuries.

        The charge that Arabs have military dictatorships can simply be dismissed. Military dictatorships can be well-run or poorly run – the Mamluks (a military dictatorship composed of state-owned slaves) ran Egypt quite well in their heyday.

        The charge was not that they have military dictatorships, the charge was that they are run by either military dictatorships or incompetent monarchies (excluding city-states, which actually aren’t all that well run considering how much they make from hydrocarbons). Mamluks were not a dictatorship any more than Sparta, they were also not an Arab state (but they ruled Arabs).

        • Replies: @Talha
      45. Lo says:
        @Colin Wright

        They don’t rule; they extort and rob with greater success than anyone else, and can still intimidate potential rivals.

        Here we go. The Ottomans were trying to keep up militarily with the West, that wasn’t a choice, but they didn’t have an industrialized economy. Hence heavy taxation after Great Divergence. Again, like most Western readers you are confusing Ottomans with British or French. They didn’t rule based on race or ethnicity, there isn’t a case of Turks robbing everyone else like how French or British robbed India, Haiti, African colonies etc.

        they encourage the Kurds to massacre the Armenians

        No. The Ottomans armed Kurds to counter armed Armenian revolutionaries. Establishment of Hamidian Battalions is after both Armenian revolutionary parties (read guerrilla) was established, not before. It is true however, Kurds ended up being too opportunistic and started attacking Armenians they weren’t supposed to attack, along with Alawite Turks as well.

        I don’t think clinging to the remnants of the Ottoman state would actually have been much of an improvement over the historical course of events.

        The Ottomans were modernizing, and by the time they had to join WW1, they were already a parliamentary monarchy. If Turks had the resources ME had, today the fortunes of Arabs and Turks both would have turned much better. Turks could provide statecraft, military, and technical know-how (they were in process in learning the last more and still way ahead of Arabs anyway) and Arabs would certainly avoid military dictatorships, avoid multiple genocides they have been going through in Libya, Syria, Iraq or Palestine, plus they wouldn’t have to waste trillions of dollars as tributary states to the US and could use those resources for actual productive work.

        If anything, attempting to ape the West, etc was part of a necessary process that the Arabs have to go through in order to come up with a new synthesis.

        Arabs didn’t ape Greeks & Iranians to learn Mathematics, Astronomy or Medicine and become the most scientifically advanced civilization at one point. Aping is mindless copying, and result in nothing. The advancement of the West is a result of scientific method & rationalism + decline of Christianity. There are plenty of Western off-shots and former colonies that are very backward.

        Muslim Brotherhood and Iran’s (not Arab, I know) Islamic Republic.

        These are not forward thinkers. Essentially, both blame West for their backwardness forgetting that Western interference is not the cause but rather the result of their civilizational stagnancy. As far as I know, there aren’t any religious groups that correctly identify their problems and synthesize solutions today.

        • Replies: @Svigor
        , @General Koofta
      46. Talha says:
        @Lo

        I will ask again, what is in it for Iran or Turkey in defending Palestine at the expense of their own respective countries?

        Nothing, especially if the Arabs just sit aside and do nothing. If it’s an Ummah affair, then all of us need to be on board. When the crusaders were kicked out, it was at the hands of armies composed of Arabs, Turks, Persians, Kurds, Circassians, and even Nubians.

        They could have learned over time, and learned from Persians and Romans in the past.

        I agree, they learned quite a bit of it from the former infrastructure and administration, often leaving it completely in place. As far as fighting, they really were superb. Incredible feats against empires with centuries of collective experience and evolution at large scale battles by a people that had no prior experience on that scale.

        Mamluks were not a dictatorship

        How were they like Sparta? They were a class of professional slave soldiers, not citizen-soldiers. They represented a military take over of the ship of state.

        I agree, Mamluks were not Arab. That was not my contention. My point was that a military dictatorship can be run well and competently.

        Peace.

        • Replies: @RobinG
      47. Lo says:
        @CharlesDS79

        The majority of Turks think that America was behind the coup because Erdogan and his friends control the media

        Or because the US harbors the CIA asset Gulen, who was behind the coup attempt, and refusing the hand him.

        The Turks are / have ethnically cleansed section of Syria of Kurds while transplanting Sunni Arab nut jobs into the region

        Syria is an Arab majority country, you got it the other way around. ISIS and SDF are both creations of Zionists and are ethnically cleansing Arabs and Turcomans from the North of Syria. In case you have been living under a rock, Israel really wants an independent Kurdish state in the North of Syria and Iraq for its own security.

        They’ve aided and abetted Al-Qaeda and repeatedly acted as air support for ISIS whenever they were engaging the Kurds.

        So why when the topic is about Arabs or Turcomans it is Al-Qaeda or ISIS (both Zio creations), but when it is Kurds they are being referred to as Kurds? Have you ever asked yourself? Perhaps it is because describing them with ethnicity name is part of the propaganda. The implication of your words is that Turkey is trying to genocide Kurds in North Syria, is that the reality or is it because the NATO allies are arming extensions of PKK? It is intentional that any action of Turkey is painted as being against “Kurds” while it is really against PKK extensions, so that naive people like you can be fooled into supporting Israel’s strategies.

        While Erdogan and his party are not the brightest bulbs, your analysis is also not better than theirs.

        • Agree: Gordo
      48. anon[172] • Disclaimer says:
        @CharlesDS79

        There is no democracy in Kuwait Saudi UAE or Egypt . Egypt ‘s Sisi was imposed by Israel despite Obama’s objection. Sisi and his pal will support Israel . Anything incongruous in it ?
        Saudi Royal as facing deep resentment in 2011 There was possibility of coup. Israel told US to save and protect Saudi. Saudi knows that it can be eliminated militarily by Israel. Saudi knows that Israel is protecting the royal in the US. Saudi Royal will be at beck and call for Israel. Is it incomprehensible!!!

        The citizen will not and doesn’t support anti Iran or Pro Jew behaviors .

        Sunni Shia fight was instigated in 2007 by Cheney bastard and his gang once it was clear to them that Shia was not grateful to the bastards for overthrowing Saddam at all.

        Shia Sunni division is political. Muslim has fallen to the ploy partly due to corruption from same Zio infested Saudi .

      49. anon19 says:

        “Turkey could threaten to withdraw from NATO…”

        So fucking what?

        If America had half a brain (and no Jewish lobby) it would have withdrawn from Nato about 25 years ago.

      50. anon19 says:
        @Heretic

        The USA has no real interests in the middle east. Only the all powerful Jewish lobby in the USA does.

        • Agree: Chris Mallory
      51. Svigor says:

        The Russian AA system can ‘shoot and scoot’ – firing and then quickly moving. Even more important, the S-400 system costs about half the price of its leading competitor, the US Patriot PAC-2 system. The S-400 may also be more reliable and accurate. The Great White Father in Washington is not happy.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIM-104_Patriot#MIM-104F_(PAC-3)

        Patriot PAC-2 is from 1987. PAC-2/GEM started replacing it in the nineties. And now:

        The PAC-3 upgrade is a significant upgrade to nearly every aspect of the system. It took place in three stages deployed in 1995, 1996 and 2000, and units were designated Configuration 1, 2, or 3.

        So, did you make an error of nomenclature, or were you making an irrelevant comparison?

      52. Svigor says:
        @Lo

        Again, like most Western readers you are confusing Ottomans with British or French. They didn’t rule based on race or ethnicity, there isn’t a case of Turks robbing everyone else

        The Turks, like everyone else, only ever ruled based on ethnicity. Otherwise, they weren’t ruling.

        Obviously.

      53. Alistair says:
        @Colin Wright

        Only evil minds are capable of plotting wars; Conflict Engineering for Strategic Gains.

        We just have to look at Iraq, Syria, Libya, Yemen, not to forget Iran, Afghanistan, Venezuela along with countless other examples that we have been witnessing over the last 30 years; if these actions aren’t products of insanity, hence “Evil Minds”, I don’t know what else should be called.

        For instance; take a look at the Syrian civil war which had produced over 10 millions refugees, destruction of Syrian towns and tens of thousand death; beheading, starvation, rape and torture of innocents people in Syria and Northern Iraq.

        These insanities couldn’t be products of “Human Values” but collective “Evil Minds” that do not live by human values – but values of their own, whatever they are – Shame on Evil Minds !!!

      54. RobinG says:
        @Talha

        Farther afield (from here, anyway) the twitter of this Chinese diplomat in Pakistan makes interesting reading. Roads and power stations galore.


        Lijian Zhao 赵立坚Verified account

        @zlj517

        DCM, Chinese Embassy.

      55. AWM says:

        The New Ottoman Empire armed to the teeth with Russian S-400s! LOL.
        These Islamists will be just like all the others, pathetic.
        Seventh century thinking leads to seventh century results.

      56. Alistair says:
        @Lo

        One of the core objectives of the NATO is to provide an exclusive market for the US weapon manufacturers, as such, it’s oxymoron to keep Turkey in the alliance if Turkey doesn’t want to buy American Made Weapons Systems.

        • Replies: @RobinG
      57. RobinG says:
        @Alistair

        But Turkey does want to buy. The US did not agree to sell.

      58. @Alistair

        Turkey will have little difficulty getting the food imports it needs from Russia.

        Tourists it can get from Russia, as it already does in serious numbers most years.

        And, of course, Chinese tourists are such a vast pool of people and money now that they can readily make up for a loss of European and American tourists.

        Russia has much more good agricultural land relative to its own population than UK / western Europe does, and has substantially increased its food exports recently. Here’s an article from 2018 re greatly increased Russian exports of wheat and fish in particular. Wonder how much is attributable to an increase in foodstuff exports to turkey….

        • Replies: @Alistair
      59. @Peter Akuleyev

        Agreed, Peter. Turkey should be encouraged to withdraw from NATO.

        Disbanding NATO would be a better way of disentangling ourselves from Islamist Turkey, of course, since we wouldn’t be embarrassing or insulting Turks by singling them out for expulsion.

      60. Alistair says:
        @RadicalCenter

        It’s very interesting how the U.S foreign policy keeps pushing Turkey toward Russia.

        I agree, punishing sanctions won’t work; they never did against Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Russia and will certainly fail against Turkey, but economic sanctions wreak havoc of a country’s social and economic development, in the long term, they lower standard of living of the populations, low income people will suffer the most but their government or the regime survives.

        It appears the U.S wants to punish Turkey which leads Turkey toward Russia and perhaps China.

      61. Hey Turk lover,
        The object of your drooling adulations committed the last centuries worst and undisputed genocide against Christian Armenians, Greeks and Assyrians. They can rot in hell and I hope President Trump is the agent that brings it to pass. by the way are you Khazar? or perhaps Domne crytpo Jews like the Young Turks that organized the Genocide

      62. @Lo

        “started attacking Armenians they weren’t supposed to attack” …really Lo? is that how you describe the Armenian Genocide, which by the way has way more historical evidence than the Holohoax. You must be a Jew

      63. anon19 says:

        NATO actually stands for north Atlantic treaty organization. If you study a map, atlas or globe you will see that Turkey is nowhere near the north Atlantic.

      64. OCGOKTAS says:

        Really appreaciated the article and valued the so clean cut comments from @Lo. And really wondered who is @Lo, what nationality at least??

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