Did Turkey Declare War on Israel…and the West?
by Gregory R. Copley
Few could dispute that the Turkish Government has consciously, with great forethought through 2009 and 2010, chosen to push its relationships with Israel, the US, and — essentially — the West as a whole to a breaking point. At the very least, Ankara was seeking to assert a watershed in which a new Turkish regional dominance and a new Turkish strategic agenda would have to be accepted by the West.
Many in Ankara must have been surprised that Washington, London, Jerusalem, and Brussels had merely accepted Turkey’s decisive move away from the West — which had been building for several years — without real question or comprehension. The consistent refusal of the West to accept that Turkey had abandoned its European aspirations, and essentially abandoned its partnership in and with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), emboldened the Islamist political leadership of Prime Minister Reçep Tayyip Erdogan to keep pushing to gain as much as possible before the West awoke.
The key was that the West listened to what Mr Erdogan and his colleagues said, but paid no attention at all to what they did.
The Turkish Government sponsorship of the maritime equivalent of a “color revolution” in the form of a so-called “aid convoy” to the Gaza enclave of the Palestinian Authority in late May 2010 brought the issue to a head. But the international community, and particularly the Israeli Government, should have long been conscious of the realities.
This writer has consistently pointed out four major aspects which have defined the Turkish situation in recent years:
1. No to the West: The elected civilian Government of the Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi (Justice and Development Party: AKP), and the Turkish General Staff have never consciously believed that Turkey would, or should, become a member of the European Union (EU), assuming that Turkey would have to meet the EU’s entry and functioning conditionalities;