Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 10

Posted: November 8, 2012 in Politics
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The first parts of the analysis of Turkish foreign policy by the German blogger clearly, based on a speech given by the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu at the investment bank Goldman Sachs on 22.11.2011, that the major driving force of Turkish foreign policy was not the desire for peace, but that the zero-problem foreign policy was merely seen as an appropriate means in order to obtain “hinterland” for the rise of Turkey as a global power.

The second parts of the analysis by the German blogger showed how the Turkish government has miscalculated itself in its foreign policy with respect to Syria. The third part of the analysis by the German blog shows how the Turkish government has ruined later on Turkey’s relations with Iraq, falling further into the vortex of geopolitical conflict in Syria, in which Turkey is involved as an instigator and contributor/catalyst to the conflict in Syria.

After the Russian delivery of Yakhont missiles (3M55E Yakhont supersonic cruise missiles) to Syria, the version of a short-term regime change in Syria, based on the military superiority of NATO, was no longer in sight. Also a regime change on the basis of elections in the sense of Israel, the GCC States and NATO, including Turkey, was not in sight.


Although the Syrian governance had introduced parties- and media pluralism in Syria, and also brought a new democratic constitution, including the election of all organs of the Syrian leadership in democratic elections that are open for any parties, on the way, and it has even performed open elections for anybody in December 2011, but like it was determined by telephone surveys in December 2011, the majority of the population of Syria supports that the Syrian president Bashar al-Assad remains in office.

Because of the majority situation and the different objectives of the anti-government forces that has led to an inability to present a convincing alternative leader as a potential opponent, a so-called regime change in order to implement a puppet government seemed impossible.

Turkey and its partners in the project “regime change in Syria” have refused and still refuse it that their fosterlings in Syria take part in elections or negotiations, which foreseeable outcome would be elections with the participation of all political forces, but instead they resort to strategies of destabilisation in order to achieve a middle-term regime change in Syria.

The NATO plan for Syria was aimed at illegalizing the political strengths of the Syrian government after a violent conquest of the power and to exclude them from elections like it has happened in Libya, and thus to ensure a victory for the oppositional fosterlings.

A major disadvantage of this approach for the protégés of Turkey and its NATO allies in Syria was and is, however, that their claims to fight for democracy in Syria has further lost credibility, due to their refusal to participate in elections in favour of an armed struggle in Syria, which has resulted in an even lower support by the Syrian people for the regime change-forces, led by Israel, NATO and the GCC States.

The means for a middle-term destabilization of Syria were initially foreign economic sanctions, whose effects should be boosted by acts of sabotage, carried out by their proxies, against the essential infrastructure for the basic needs of the Syrian population.

Since Syria is a small and insignificant trading partner for them, these acts of sabotage and sanctions “to choke the Syrian economy” appeared for the U.S., the EU and the GCC States as a cheap form of pressure, which sooner or later would lead to an economic collapse of Syria and thereby to the desired downfall of the Syrian government. Therefore, the U.S., the EU and the GCC States have imposed a comprehensive trade embargo against Syria.

For the neighbouring countries of Syria, whose own economy has significant ties with the Syrian economy, this means that the tough economic sanctions against Syria also do affect their own economy.

Therefore, for example, the relatively small and economically weak state of Jordan that belongs to the absolute monarchies has rejected imposing sanctions against Syria, although it is close to the NATO / GCC axis with regard of foreign policy.

The Turkish state leadership was not able to or has not wanted to reject the means of economic sanctions, given the fact that they had most vociferously called for the overthrow of the Syrian government, and so the Turkish government has decided to freeze the assets of the Syrian government in Turkey and also has implemented financial sanctions.

Already on this occasion, the Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu stressed, that the Turkish electricity exports to Syria were not affected by the sanctions.

His claim that the Turkish electricity exports to Syria continue in order to not upset the Syrian population was easily seen as pretextual due to the fact that everybody was able to simultaneous read in American newspapers what the real goal of the sanctions against Syria is.

The real goal of the sanctions against Syria was to boost the hatred of the Syrian population against their leadership by economic sanctions and the thereof following tough living conditions. Much more important from a Turkish point of view was surely the consideration to not cut off the Turkish electricity sector by the sanctions from its southern market. In this Turkish decision it was already indicated that Turkey is economically not strong enough to force their neighbours to their knees by sanctions.

The Syrian governance for their part has reacted on the Turkish decision to implement sanctions against Syria, in the way that it has exposed the Syrian-Turkish free trade agreement. The Syrian “hinterland” and its closer ties to Turkey that is a main trigger for Turkey in their efforts for a regime change in Syria, and what was also advertised by Davutoglu in his speech at Goldman Sachs, was therefore temporarily gone for the Turkish economy.

The Chinese state-run Xinhua news agency commented on the development smugly with the headline that sanctions against Syria are a two-edged sword, and pointed out that Turkey has benefited more with its export-oriented industry in a smooth trade with Syria than the Syrian industry that is designed on self-sufficiency, and Xinhua also explained that many Syrian entrepreneurs would be happy now that they are able to supply the Syrian market without Turkish competition.

There was no need for clairvoyant skills to envision which regional economic power would primarily try to fill the gaps that were left by Syria`s devastated trade sanctions to EU, the GCC States and Turkey: of course, Syria`s very close ally Iran, and actually, a Syrian-Iranian free trade agreement was signed about two weeks after the suspension of the Syrian-Turkish free trade agreement.

Around this time, the Israeli regime, which also supports the regime change in Syria, has performed an absurd theatre play, where senior members of the Zionist regime have suddenly again and again proclaimed, that Israel would start a war against Iran under the pretext of potential deviations of the Iranian nuclear program, if there are no immediate and decisive actions against Iran by other states.

That this was only theatrical thunder that should  fulfilled various domestic and foreign policy purposes of the Israeli regime was easily to recognize, because Israel is politically and militarily too weak for a war of aggression against Iran.

One major goal of the Israel theatrical thunder could have been to use the opportunity that the NATO countries were looking for other ways to weaken Syria, and to let Israel`s long-held dream come true – to weaken Syria and Iran by sanctions. And so, the leaders of Israel have soon declared, after their announcements of a war of aggression against Iran that sharp sanctions against Iran would enough at the current time, in order to appease Israel so that it would not destroy itself immediately with an aggressive war against Iran.

Not least in order to make more pressure on Syria, the Israeli request for sanctions against Iran came quite right for the leaderships of the U.S. and the E.U, and thus they and other states have decided in a record time further sanctions against Iran’s oil industry and the Iranian shipping and they have truncated the Iranian banking sector from the international payment transactions.

For the European Union (EU), the sanctions against Iran were even quite painful, partly because some southern European crisis states have processed Iranian oil and beside the major recession, there were also new costs for the local industry due to the changeover of the supplier. Also for the crisis-ridden French automobile industry are these sanctions against Iran poison because Iran has a cooperation with the French automaker Peugeot, causing accelerated plant closures in France due to the disappearance of the Iran-business.

The EU as a whole is large enough so that the deals with Iran are not so important, and the EU is able to bear the own weight and costs because of the Anti-Iranian sanctions, due to its humbleness towards the Israel Lobby and the U.S. However, Turkey has not joined the energy and financial sanctions against Iran, which were decided by third State, among other things, with the idea to support Turkey’s efforts in the operation for a regime change in Syria, for the most part.

On the contrary, Turkey receives oil and gas as well as electricity from Iran, and Turkish companies export a lot and steadily more to Iran. In 2012, the Iran became the second largest export market after Germany for Turkey, and also the imports from Iran have increased further. If Turkey is losing the economic ties with Iran, then Turkey is threatened with power shortages and recession, especially after Turkey has already ruined its relations with its neighbour Syria by sanctions.

If a recession in Turkey will be severe and long and when the hostile policy of the Turkish government against the neighbouring countries is identified as the cause, then the attempt of the Turkish governance to implement a regime change in Syria will sooner or later lead to a regime change in Turkey, namely a deselection of the Turkish government.

The Turkish governance is trying to cover up its weak economic position, which is in a stark contrast to the cockily words of the Turkish governance, by the feigning of friendship with Iran to its population, although it simultaneously attacks the axis Iran-Syria actively in Syria.

Economically more important than Iran is Russia for Turkey. Russia is the main supplier of natural gas to Turkey and Turkish companies also export a lot of products to Russia. While the NATO countries are in total economically relatively strong compared to Russia, Turkey would belong in an economic war of NATO against Russia like in the days of the Cold War to the biggest losers. Turkey’s goal of economic growth would be thwarted so completely.

But it is exactly about this goal in the attempts of Turkey to implement a Turkish puppet regime in Syria, namely the obtaining of Syrian “hinterland” for the rise of Turkey as global power and to thereby make Turkey to one of the ten largest economies in the world till 2023. Therefore, Turkey tries in terms of Russia to decouple the disagreement with Syria from the Turkish diplomatic relations with Russia, similar like Turkey tries it with Iran.

This explains the fact that Turkey has granted Russia the transit rights for the South Stream Pipeline through the exclusive economic zone of Turkey in the Black Sea in exchange for cheap Russian gas sales to Turkey at the end of December 2011. Thus, Turkey has hit a serious blow on the Nabucco pipeline project, perhaps even the decisive blow.

Nabucco was particularly taken into account by pro-Israel forces in the United States and pro-American forces in the European Union, thus by the essential partners of Turkey in the attempt of a regime change in Syria, to bypass Russia.

The Turkish decision to approve South Stream is fully consistent with the Ottoman efforts to make Turkey quickly to a large and powerful industrial power, because low-cost energy is essential for this, but at the same time, it is in a stark contrast (like the increasing Turkish trade with Iran) with the desire of the NATO/GCC/G7-axis to put pressure on the supporters of Syria to achieve a pro-Turkish regime change in the neighbouring country Syria.

The underlying attitude of the Turkish government is that Turkey is strong, great and important, so that the Turkish NATO- and GCC partner countries have to accept the fact that Turkey has chosen this in the style of a world power, and they have the duty to support Turkey in all its efforts for a regime change in Syria, of course.

It is not difficult to understand that this Turkish policy has already in its arrangement a high potential for tensions, not only with Iran and Russia, but also for tensions of Turkey with the rest of the NATO countries. This is especially true in light of the fact that Turkey has also tensions with Israel since the Israeli raid on the Mavi Marmara, and thus the Israel Lobby within the NATO countries tries to maintain “distance” from Turkey. But Turkey has initially succeeded to decouple these tensions so that they will not have adverse effects on the economic relations of Turkey.

In the Turkish-Iraqi relations, the diplomatic decoupling, however, has not worked, although Iraq belongs beside Germany and Iran to the three main markets of Turkey. As Abdullah Bozkurt, a prominent columnist for the pro-government Turkish newspaper “Today’s Zaman”, has recently announced, the Turkish foreign policy towards Iraq was marked by the fact that the Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan had anger at the Iraqi prime minister in the first weeks of January 2012, because the Iraqi prime minister was so bold to start a legal persecution of the Iraqi leading politician Tariq al-Hashemi because of suspicion of terrorism.

What Abdullah Bozkurt describes here about how the Turkish-Iraqi relations were broken, is more than just remarkable. Abdullah Bozkurt explained initially, that Turkish prime minister had interfered in the internal affairs of Iraq, as he has supported the main opponent of the Iraqi government leader in the 2010 elections.

After his electoral defeat that was seen by the Turkish government as a victory because his party has received relatively the most votes, the Turkish prime minister has, however, grudgingly accepted in his whole magnanimity, that the democratically elected majority of the Iraqi parliament has confirmed the Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki in his office.

Will be continued in the next part.

Source: nocheinparteibuch.wordpress.com

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