TURKEY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


TURKEY

Jun 19 09:54

Erdogan Slams US for Building Air Bases in Syrian Kurdistan: Slams US Soldiers Being 'Arm in Arm' With Terrorists

With the Kurdish YPG advancing into the ISIS capital of Raqqa, and US officials already designating Mayadin the “next ISIS capital,” there’s clearly a lot more US-backed invasions for the Kurds to take part in, and the US is looking to make the backing of those invasions more convenient, setting up airbases in Kurdish territory.

That’s not sitting well with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who expressed particular outrage at the US having an air base in the Kurdish town of Kobani, along the Turkish border and reiterating his long-standing opposition to the US having ties with the YPG at all.

“I find the US approach to the YPG in no way chic,” Erdogan insisted, saying that US soldiers and military officers are “hand in hand, arm in arm” with a group that Turkey considers a terrorist group. He conceded that he understands the US doesn’t consider the Kurds terrorists.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So let me get this straight: the Unhinged, Surveilled State of America is building illegal bases in Syria, totally without the permission of that country, in order for Kurds to be able to found a homeland, at the expense of sovereign Syrian territory?!?!?

And the following two very disturbing articles are featured, one from Saturday, and one from today at globalresearch.ca, indicating that the building of illegal US forward bases continues in Syria, and what the Kurds are doing to ethnic Arabs near Raqqa:

US Backed YPG Kurds Are Ethnically Cleansing Arabs From Raqqa, and the World Is Silent

Are More US Attacks on Syrian Forces Planned? Establishing Pentagon Bases in Syria?

Jun 19 09:48

Turkey Wants to Continue Accession Talks With European Union

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that Ankara is willing to pursue the talks with the European Union on getting full membership in the bloc and renew the Customs Union agreement with Brussels.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Ankara is willing to pursue the talks with the European Union on getting full membership in the bloc and renew the Customs Union agreement with Brussels, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said.

"Turkey is willing to pursue full membership talks with the EU and renew the Customs Trade [deal]," Yildirim said at a joint press conference on Monday with his Bulgarian counterpart Boyko Borisov in Ankara as quoted by the Anadolu news agency.

The Turkish minister stressed that the European Union had to "revise its future vision" and then make relevant decisions on the talks with Ankara.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The question is, after the failed coup attempt in Turkey,and Erdogan having gone full tilt-buggie dictator over his own people, does the EU really want Turkey as a member?!?

Jun 18 09:05

731 TURKISH SOLDIERS HOSPITALIZED WITH FOOD POISONING

A Turkish prosecutor says 731 soldiers at a western base were sent to the hospital with food poisoning and 21 people from the company that provided the food have been detained.

Akif Celattin Simsek, the lead prosecutor in Manisa province, said Sunday an investigation was launched with samples taken from the affected soldiers, the food and the water. None of those hospitalized late Saturday was in critical condition.

Defense Minister Fikri Isik, who went to Manisa, said the ministry had cancelled the contract with the food company. The governor's office said 24 soldiers remain hospitalized Sunday afternoon.

Jun 18 09:03

Turkey Condemns US Warning of Possible Istanbul Terror Attack

A spokesman for the Turkish Foreign Ministry slammed on Saturday a US consular warning of a possible terrorist attack in the city of Istanbul.

Hussein Mufti Oglu condemned the warning as not being based on any tangible intelligence, but on the activity of Turkish police and the intensified security forces patrols in the neighborhoods of Mecidiyekoy and Sisli.

“US authorities made this statement based on normal precautions taken by our security forces rather than any concrete intelligence.”

Jun 13 08:13

UAE paid $3bn to finance coup attempt in Turkey: Report

The United Arab Emirates financed a high-profile coup attempt last year in Turkey and paid about three billion dollars to the putschists, a columnist in a Turkish daily has claimed.

Jun 12 11:38

Israel, Saudis, UAE Lobby Congress for Anti-Qatar Legislation

While Israel has been unable to directly join the Saudi-led move to “blockade” Qatar, having very limited contact with them in the first place, that hasn’t stopped them from throwing their substantial lobbying support behind a move already backed by Saudi and Emirati lobbyists to see the US Congress pass anti-Qatar legislation.

The HR 2712 bill, the Palestinian International Terrorism Support Prevention Act of 2017, faults Qatar for its support for the Hamas Movement, The bill’s sponsors in the House include a number of lawmakers who have received substantial donations from pro-Israel lobbyists, and donations from pro-Saudi lobbyists as well.

This is part of an ongoing allegation that Qatar’s charitable contributions are going to terrorist movements. Qatar denies that this is the case, saying that the government has been very successful in ensuring that the charities they support actually do charitable work, and don’t simply end up laundering the money to terrorist movements.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The threat of an imminent invasion into Qatar may have been stayed for now, thanks to the rapid action of both Turkey and Iran, pledging troops for Qatar.

However, that being said, look for Israel and the US government to conjure up some horrific false flag to blame on Iran (the real target, here), in the not too distant future, as a "justification" for invading it.

And Iran's "real crimes" here?!? Oh, let me count them for you:

1. Not having a private central bank, which loans money at interest, instead of for a fixed fee, which creates no compound interest.

2. Having a Constitutional Islamic Republic (Israel has no constitution whatsoever)

3. Doing a great job of educating their kids to become competitive on the world stage. In Iran, around 70% of science and engineering students are women

Jun 11 08:40

Cool Qatar: Riyadh plan backfires after Trump flip-flop & Turkey ruse

Saudi Arabia’s standoff against Qatar was fraught with miscalculations and comically ill-conceived notions from the start. But now the crisis is becoming a threat to Riyadh’s own prominence and security in the Middle East.

Jun 08 15:28

Germany To Withdraw Military Aircraft From Turkey

The German cabinet has decided to transfer some 260 German soldiers, along with Tornado reconnaissance aircraft and a tanker aircraft, to Jordan from the Turkish air base at Incirlik.

Jun 08 12:11

Turkey scrambles for regional footing as Qatar debacle expands

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan broke his silence over the crisis engulfing his country’s closest Arab ally Qatar today, condemning the actions of the group of Gulf countries that cut off ties with the emirate over its alleged support for extremist groups and Iran. In a related move, Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has decided to fast-track bills to deploy Turkish forces in Qatar and train Qatari troops in its legislative agenda. Turkey is building a base in Qatar that will eventually host up to 10,000 troops under an accord in which Turkey pledged to defend the Gulf state.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

So, let me get my head around this; in one corner, we have Turkey; Iran (and with it, most probably, Russia); and Qatar; in the other corner, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and the United States.

In looking at the facts and developments on the ground, what I am seeing is a prelude to pitting Iran against Saudi Arabia in a war, then attempting to regime-change Tehran, as the US government did in 1953, and insure that the country becomes balkanised, just as is happening in Iraq, to prevent it from having its current power and weight in the Middle East any longer.

This will, of course, make Israel very happy, because it doesn't like competing economically with Iran, and has declared it an "existential threat" to Israel's existence (which is is not: Iran hasn't started a war in over 200 years).

However, there are a couple of caveats to be considered in any such action.

First, the Iran of 2017 is not the Iran of 1953; Iranians are a very geopolitically sophisticated, tech-embracing people, who remember their history, and are determined to not allow it to be repeated.

Secondly, the large, militarily-capable gorilla, snoozing on Bosendorfer Grand in the living room...is Russia. Russian political and military leaders have a very excellent relationship with Iran, and have been very vocal about coming to its aid, militarily, should it get attacked.

Russia and Iran's growing cooperation hints at a new Middle East, March, 2017

So, a war against Iran is most probably going to mean war against Russia.

I cannot think of a more ham-fisted, pig-headed move the US/Saudi consortium could make at this time, than a war against Russia over Iran.

However, unfortunately, just because a military attack against Russia is the most ham-fisted, pig-headed move the US/Saudi consortium could make, is utterly no guarantee that they won't do it.

Jun 08 08:43

Qatar Says "We Will Never Surrender", Welcomes Turkish Troops As Iran Offers Food, Ports

Even as the world's attention turns to the Comey testimony for the next few hours, the Qatar diplomatic crisis (where CNN's "report" of Russian hacking now appears long forgotten) continues, and moments ago a barrage of headlines from Qatar suggests that the small nation, which may or may not be preparing for military action, is happy to welcome the Turkish troops that will be arriving soon as reported yesterday, with its foreign minister stating that "we are not ready to surrender and will never compromise the independence of our foreign policy." Also, and perhaps even more critically, Qatar - whose foreign minister is set to fly to Moscow on Saturday - also announced that Iran is ready to help with food and that three of Iran's ports will be designated for use for Qatar.

From the wires:

QATAR FM SAYS IRAN SAID THEY ARE READY TO HELP QATAR WITH FOOD & 3 OF THEIR PORTS WILL BE DESIGNATED FOR QATAR: RTRS.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This wouldn't have happened at all, if Saudi Arabia didn't believe it did not have the full backing of the US, to pull this stunt.

Trump's offer to assist in a "resolution" of the conflict is pure, Trumpian theatre; full of sound and fury, but signifying .... absolutely nothing. This geopolitical kerfuffle is largely of his own making.

Folks, keep your eyes on the ball here; the real target, in all of this, is Iran, and conjuring some kind of "justification" for a war against it; please do not let that reality out of your sight for a moment, because it ultimately will be your kids, getting drafted, and on the front lines of such a war.

Jun 07 09:37

Germany will have to pull its troops from key base in Turkey, says Merkel's deputy

Germany has no choice but to pull its troops out of the key Turkish airbase of Incirlik, after failing to reach agreement with Ankara on visits by politicians, Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said on Monday.

The Incirlik base in southern Turkey, used for raids against Isis in Syria, has been at the centre of a dispute between the NATO allies since Ankara blocked a visit by German parliamentarians last month.

"Right now it is possible to visit the NATO base in Konya (in central Turkey), not Incirlik," Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said at a joint press conference with Gabriel in Ankara.

Jun 07 07:18

‘SWEPT UP IN POST-COUP PURGE’: HEAD OF AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL TURKEY ARRESTED

The head of Amnesty International Turkey has been arrested by the authorities over suspected links with exiled cleric, Fethullah Gulen, whom Ankara blames for a failed 2016 coup, the group said. It added that Taner Kilic was “swept up in the post-coup purge.”

Kilic, the chair of Amnesty International Turkey, “was detained from his house in [the city of] Izmir at 6:30 this morning [Tuesday] before being taken to his office. Both properties were searched. He is currently in police custody in Yesilyurt district of Izmir,” Amnesty International said in a statement.

According to the group, Kilic’s detention “does not seem to be connected to any of Amnesty International’s work, nor to be specifically targeting the organization.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Erdogan's paranoia appears to have no bounds at this point.

Once this guy gets released (which he hopefully will), Amnesty International needs to leave Turkey, and at a quick-time march. The current government of Turkey has no patience for anyone, or any organisation, which even minutely questions its processes.

Jun 06 08:48

US military convoy enters Syria from Iraq

An American military convoy consisting of several armored vehicles reportedly entered Syria from the Iraqi border on Saturday, arriving in the city of Al-Qamishli this morning. The American convoy is expected to head to the Syrian-Turkish border in the coming hours as they attempt to deter the Turkish Asrmed Forces from carrying out sporadic attacks against the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Webmaster's Commentary: 

In other words, the US Government is betting that neither Turkey nor Russia will risk hitting American forces being used as human shields for the Kurds.

Jun 05 11:27

NATO Splinters: Germany Says "Has No Choice But To Pull Out" Troops From Turkey's Incirlik Airbase

The scandal erupted last Thursday, when Turkey's foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey's Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees "positive steps" from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey's "demands" or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view. Ties between the NATO allies deteriorated sharply in the run-up to Turkey's April 16 referendum that handed President Tayyip Erdogan stronger presidential powers.

"We see that Germany supports everything that is against Turkey," Mevlut Cavusoglu told a news conference in Ankara last week. "Under these circumstances it is not possible for us to open Incirlik to German lawmakers right now ... If they take positive steps in the future we can reconsider."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a really bad patch for NATO, and may well have Turkish leadership consider re-aligning itself with the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation,and become part of the BRIC economic community.

THAT could be a real game changer, for both Turkey and the world.

Jun 03 11:07

GREAT WALL OF TURKEY: Erdogan plans to build HUGE barrier on Iran and Iraq border

TURKEY plans to build huge walls along its borders with Iran and Iraq as President Recep Tayyip Erdogan mounts a security crackdown.

The Turkish president said Ankara plans to build walls along its borders with southern neighbours Iraq and Iran in addition to the wall currently being built along the Syrian border.

Construction is well underway on the wall along the Turkey-Syria border with 403 miles of the wall already completed.

The wall will stretch the distance of the 566 mile border as Turkey bids to protect its national borders and boost security.

Jun 02 09:56

Turkish jets bomb US-backed forces in Iraq, Syria, US officials say

More than 30 U.S.-backed Syrian and Iraqi Kurdish fighters were killed in a series of airstrikes carried out by Turkish jets on Monday, two American defense officials confirmed to Fox News. Dozens of fighters were also wounded in the strikes.

Jun 01 10:21

RUSSIA READY TO SUPPLY S-400 MISSILE SYSTEMS TO TURKEY – PUTIN

Russia is ready to sell its S-400 air defense systems to Turkey, President Vladimir Putin said at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). He added the issue was discussed earlier with his Turkish counterpart.

“We discussed the possibility of selling S-400s [to Turkey]. We are ready for this,” Putin said in answer to a question from a Turkish media reporter.

Speaking about cooperation between Moscow and Ankara in assembling the defense systems in Turkey, he said it depends on the readiness of local manufacturing industry.

“At the moment, we don't produce those systems abroad,” Putin added.

“We are ready to deliver these newest and most efficient systems. President [Recep Tayip] Erdogan and our countries’ militaries are aware of it.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Whether produced in Russia or Turkey, such a defensive capability for Turkey would be an absolute game-changer.

Jun 01 08:22

US starts providing weapons to Syrian Kurds

Kurdish fighters received small arms and vehicles from the US military in a war plan that has angered Turkey

May 30 12:34

Turkey Refuses To Grant Germans Access To Incirlik Airbase

While Angela Merkel is busy sowing the seeds of the next cold war between Germany and the Trump administration (and therefore the US, if only for the next three and a half years), a troubling flashpoint for Germany continues to grow in Turkey where on Tursday, Turkey’s foreign minister said it is not possible to allow German lawmakers to visit troops stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base now, although he said Ankara may reconsider if it sees “positive steps” from Berlin. It was not immediately clear just what Turkey’s “demands” or expectations, monetary or otherwise, were from Merkel for it to change its view.

“We see that Germany supports everything that is against Turkey,” Mevlut Cavusoglu told a news conference in Ankara. “Under these circumstances it is not possible for us to open Incirlik to German lawmakers right now … If they take positive steps in the future we can reconsider.”

May 25 11:01

Turkey's Erdogan: If Berlin wants to pull troops, we'd say 'Goodbye'

The future of the German troops at Incirlik has been thrown into question after Turkey blocked German lawmakers from visiting the troops this month, prompting Berlin to say it may consider moving the troops. Some 250 German troops are stationed at Incirlik, where they contribute to the U.S.-led fight against Islamic State.

May 25 09:22

‘TRUCKLOADS’ OF US ARMS AND AMMO REACH KURDISH MILITIA IN SYRIA – REPORTS

Over 100 trucks loaded with US armaments and ammunition, including heavy mortars and anti-tank missiles, have reached the Kurdish controlled northern Syrian city of Hasakah over the past weeks, Turkish and Kurdish media report.
The US arms shipment was reserved for the multi-ethnic Syrian militia known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) dominated by Kurdish YPG units, according to the media reports.

The SDF is fighting Islamic State (IS, former ISIS/ISIL) and is preparing to launch an offensive on the city of Raqqa, considered to be the self-proclaimed capital of IS in Syria.

The trucks carrying the arsenal crossed into Syria from northern Iraq through the Simelka border crossing on two separate occasions on May 15 and May 20, Turkey's Daily Sabah reports.

The convoys reportedly moved to Hasakah and later headed to the Raqqa region where the SDF are currently battling Islamic State militants.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The question I would have to ask right now is, how long will Syria, Russia and Turkey allow this destabilisation to move forward in Syria?!?

Because the establishment of an independent Kurdistan will be seen as an existential threat by Turkey, who consider the Kurds an existential threat, and the Syrians and Russians, who don't dont want Syria having to yield one inch of its sovereign territory?!?

I don't know what the Vegas odds are on this, but I have to wonder; just when will American troops, fighting with the Kurds, be meeting up with Russian ground troops here?!?

Because my concern is, this is only a matter of when, not if, this happens, at this point.

May 24 10:10

NATO forced to change rules after Turkey’s spat with Austria threatens to paralyze alliance

he 28 NATO member states have reportedly agreed that military cooperation with non-members can be approved on a country-by-country basis after alliance member Turkey put a veto on Austria’s participation and froze out 40 other partner states in the process.

May 24 09:57

Turkey to Form 10,000-Fighter Army to Battle Kurdish Forces in Northern Syria

Sources in the Free Syrian Army (FSA) militant group disclosed that Ankara is about to form a new army of 10,000 FSA fighters to take part in battles against the Kurdish forces in Northern Syria.

May 24 09:11

America Arms The Kurds And Terrorists, Turks Bomb Kurds And Assist Terrorists: What Side Is Everyone On?

Recently, the Trump administration approved the arming of Kurdish militias in Syria with heavy weapons. Early on, Trump had allowed for the shipment of various armored vehicles and light weaponry to be shipped to Kurdish fighters but the new announcement will see restrictions removed and allow for even more plentiful and powerful weaponry being sent to Kurds in Syria who are battling terrorists, Turkey, the Syrian military, and non-Kurd militias.

Turkey is obviously outraged at the new announcement. These Kurdish fighters are bound to use those arms against Turkey at some point if for no other reason that the fact that Turkey has invaded Syrian territory and launched a war not on ISIS but the YPG. At the same time, however, the United States and Turkey are allies with Turkey doing the bidding of the U.S. for the past six years of the conflict in Syria.

May 22 14:02

Turkish Violence 'Simply Unacceptable': Tillerson

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has denounced a violent confrontation in Washington, DC, last week involving Turkish security personnel and anti-Ankara protesters, calling it “simply unacceptable.”

May 19 14:10

U.S. Citizens Want to Know if Erdogan Ordered Them Attacked at D.C. Protest

American activists opposed to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan want to know if he personally ordered the violent disruption of a protest Tuesday in the U.S. capital, and say President Donald Trump needs to stand up for them.

Video released Thursday shows that Erdogan watched his supporters, including members of his security detail, charge toward protesters in the grassy Sheridan Circle, punching and kicking them before police restored order.

Just before chaos erupted, an aide bent over Erdogan, who was seated in the back seat of a car in the driveway of the Turkish ambassador's home. The aide communicated with another man who ran toward protesters. Seconds later, Erdogan supporters were breaking through the police line.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

That foreign agents were allowed to rough up peaceful protestors is an absolute insult to all the American people, and should never have been allowed to happen.

May 19 00:42

Erdogan checked in Washington

There is no doubt that Recep Tayyip Erdogan came away from Washington on Wednesday with egg on his face, although less embarrassed than he would have been if Donald Trump had brought up human rights abuses, given that Turkey has always been and remains the European capital city of Torture. This meeting, on Wednesday 16 in Washington, was heralded by Ankara as the new beginning but it turned out to be the continuation of a relationship with difficulties in which Washington is the master and Turkey the obedient serf. More of the end of a new beginning or the beginning of the end for Erdogan as a somebody on the international stage. He may be mister big wallah wallah in Turkey but he is a nobody outside...

May 17 12:14

9 Injured, 2 Arrested In Anti-Erdogan Protests At Turkish Embassy In DC (VIDEOS)

Nine people were hurt, including one seriously, and two were arrested when a fight reportedly broke out between opposing groups of protesters outside the Turkish embassy in Washington, DC. The demonstration occurred as the Turkish president was in town.

May 17 08:37

INSANE. Erdogan’s people rough up Kurdish protesters | Washington DC

May 16 13:01

US And Turkey: The Balkanization Of The Middle East

For the past 20 years Washington has aggressively pursued the age-old imperial strategy of ‘divide and conquer’ throughout the Middle East, Southwest Asia and East Africa. Frustrated at its inability to control national policy of various independent nation-states, Washington used direct and indirect military force to destroy the central governments in the targeted nations and create patchworks of tribal-ethno-mini-states amenable to imperial rule. Tens of millions of people have been uprooted and millions have died because of this imperial policy.

May 16 10:16

Turkey’s War on Kurds Increasingly Crosses Borders: Erdogan's US Visit to Focus on His Anger at US Support for YPG

Officially, Turkey considers itself at war with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a war which has lasted decades. Increasingly, however, PKK is being very vaguely defined, and includes Kurdish groups in several countries which Turkey argues are all basically PKK.

Doing this has allowed Turkey to go after limited PKK forces who have crossed the border into Iraq or Syria, but as lines blur, it’s tough to argue that Turkey isn’t just at war with Kurds in general at this point, particularly in Syria, where the PKK is virtually non-existent, and Turkey is after the YPG claiming they are the same group.

It is this interest in warring with the YPG, and with Kurds as such, that will be a big focus of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on his upcoming visit to the US, where he will express outrage at US military support provided to the YPG to fight against ISIS, arguing that amounts to backing a terrorist group.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The problem for Erdogan, is not so much the Kurds in Syria, as it is the US government's desire to carve out an independent Kurdistan in Syria, as a "buffer state" between Turkey and Syria.

CARVING OUT “KURDISTAN” IS THE US’ NEW END GAME IN SYRIA

I am watching the Faux feed as I type this, and Presidents Trump and Erdogan are making their joint statement. Turkish President Erdogan is NOT smiling.

President Trump has his work cut out for him, to convince Erdogan that a neighboring Kurdistan will be a "good thing", because it will balkanize bits of Syria, and that will help keep Turkey safe.

I have to wonder what the "quid pro quo" on this US-created independent Kurdistan will be, behind closed doors.

And apparently, no one has sent Syrian President Bashir Al Assad the memo that the establishment of such a country will gobble up hunks of the sovereign state of Syria.

May 15 08:47

BREAKING: Merkel 'to withdraw all German soldiers from Turkey' in MAJOR diplomatic row

ANGELA Merkel is considering withdrawing all German soldiers from Turkey in a major diplomatic snub.

It comes after Turkey refused to allow German politicians to visit soldiers at Incirlik air base.

May 13 09:55

Turkish PM: US Promises Kurds Won’t Stay in Raqqa

Speaking to reporters today during an official visit to London, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim says that the United States has assured Turkey that even though the Kurdish YPG is being used to invade ISIS’ capital city of Raqqa, they will not keep control of the city after the battle.

These assurances appear to have been made to try to placate Turkish outrage over US plans to arm the YPG with heavy weapons for the Raqqa battle, and for the US choosing to back the YPG in the offensive against ISIS in general, something Turkey has repeatedly condemned.

Kurdish officials have never said anything about conquering Raqqa for somebody else, and it would be unusual for the group to be willing to commit so heavy to the invasion of a city if they didn’t have designs on incorporating it into their self-declared autonomous region.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Why would the Kurds be fighting at all, if not for an independent Kurdistan?!?

The US government and military need to be very clear as to their ultimate intentions here; otherwise, they may well find Turkey leaving NATO, and leaving them with a vast hole in their garrisoning of the Middle East.

May 11 07:35

Arming the Kurds: Trump’s Syrian Gambit

President Trump’s decision to provide weapons to the Syrian Kurds, who are fighting Isis, potentially marks a crucial change in the political geography of the Middle East. In effect, the US is choosing to support its Kurdish ally in Syria, in defiance of Turkey, whose aim is to prevent the establishment of a quasi-independent Kurdish state there.

Mr Trump approved a plan on Monday to arm the Kurds directly, in order to enable the People’s Mobilisation Units (YPG) Kurdish militia and its Arab allies to assault and capture Raqqa, the de facto capital of Isis in Syria. The US will send heavy machine guns, anti-tank weapons, mortars, armoured cars and engineering equipment to bolster the attack.

May 10 12:43

Turkey Convicts Daesh British Member, Hands Him Jail Terms

A British man suspected of being a senior member of the Takfiri Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group has been convicted in Turkey on terrorism charges and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison.

May 10 09:42

Turkey warns US against arming Syrian Kurd ‘terrorists,’ ponders end of ‘strategic partnership’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said he hopes the recent US decision to arm Syrian-Kurdish forces fighting Islamic State will be reversed by the time he flies to Washington for a meeting with President Donald Trump next week.

The Turkish government has asked the US to reverse its decision to broaden support for Syria’s Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (YPG), stating that it is unacceptable for a NATO ally to support “terrorist groups.”

May 10 09:29

Turkish Dictator Recep Erdogan Calls For Muslims Worldwide To ‘Flood Jerusalem’, Warns Trump On Embassy

DURING HIS ADDRESS, ERDOGAN ALSO WARNED THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION NOT TO MOVE ITS EMBASSY FROM TEL AVIV TO JERUSALEM, SAYING THE STEP WOULD BE “EXTREMELY WRONG” AND “ILL-ADVISED”

May 10 08:21

Turkey Slams US 'Unacceptable' Weapons Supply to Kurdish Militants

"The supply of arms to the YPG is unacceptable, such a policy will benefit nobody," Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli, New Arab reported.

"We expect that this mistake is to be rectified," he said, days ahead of a crunch meeting in Washington between President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and US counterpart Donald Trump.

But Ankara regards the group as a terror outfit which is effectively the Syrian branch of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which has waged an insurgency since 1984 against Ankara, leaving tens of thousands dead.

May 10 08:20

Every weapon obtained by YPG threat against Turkey: Cavusoglu

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has expressed great resentment over the US administration’s decision to arm Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) fighters battling Takfiri Daesh terrorists in Syria, stressing that every weapon obtained by the forces constitutes a threat to Turkey.

May 09 12:02

Radical Feminist Embraces Islam – Guess What Happened To Her Next

Liberals are quick to attack conservatives for violence and misogyny—but continue to give Islam a free pass.
Radical left-wing activist, Lacy MacAuley, who leads violent protest group “Antifa” in Washington, DC, came to regret that stance—after she accompanied her Muslim boyfriend to his homeland of Turkey, where “misogyny and patriarchy run deep.”

The Gateway Pundit dug up a ten-month-old archived blog post from MacAuley’s website. Called, “My experience of intimate partner violence, trapped in Turkey,” MacAuley explains her experience

Upon leaving Turkey, MacAuley has continued her work to rally against “totalitarianism” and “sexism” in the United States.

But like many liberals, she seems to still be unaware that the fact that women, minorities, and just about everyone else, are more free and more respected in the United States than most of the world.

May 09 09:34

Syria rejects international forces in safe zones

Syria on Monday dismissed the idea of foreign forces patrolling four so-called de-escalation zones that are to be established under a deal struck by Russia, Iran and Turkey, suggesting Damascus would agree only to Russian "military police" who are already on the ground.

Syria planned to abide by the agreement signed in Kazakhstan last week, Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem told reporters in the Syrian capital, but he cautioned it was "premature" to say whether the deal would succeed.

"There will be no presence by any international forces supervised by the United Nations," al-Moallem said. "The Russian guarantor has clarified that there will be military police and observation centers."

Though he did not specify who the military police would be, he appeared to be referring to Russian observers already in Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: it appears that the US government and the rebels it has been arming and training, will completely ignore the de-escalation zones.

May 08 09:57

Erdo?an urges Muslims to visit Al-Aqsa to protect the mosque's Islamic identity

President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an expressed Turkey's support for the Palestinian fight against the Israeli occupation of Jerusalem, calling on Turks to visit the Al-Aqsa Mosque often to protect the Muslim identity of the Holy place.

May 08 09:15

Turkey deploying troops to Syria’s militant-held Idlib: Report

The Turkish army is set to deploy forces to Syria’s militant-controlled northwestern Idlib province and establish military bases there, a report says.

May 08 09:15

Turkey may infiltrate into Iraq, Syria overnight: Erdogan

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Ankara would not tolerate the presence of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in Iraq's Sinjar region and northern Syria, hinting about an operation to flush militants out of the areas in Turkey’s south.

"Turkey knows what to do and when to do it, we may come there overnight all of a sudden," Erdogan said on Saturday.

May 08 08:32

Russia Says Deal Bars American Jets From Much of Syria’s Skies. U.S. Says No.

United States and allied aircraft will be banned from flying over much of Syria as part of a deal struck by Iran, Russia and Turkey to foster a cease-fire in the Syrian war, a senior Russian diplomat said Friday.

But a State Department spokesman later said that the agreement, which the United States did not sign, does not “preclude anyone from going after terrorists wherever they may be in Syria.” The spokesman, Edgar Vasquez, said Russian officials’ interpretation of their own agreement “makes no sense.”

May 07 08:38

Putin ‘orders Gazprom to start laying pipes along Turkish Stream’s sea route’

Gazprom will be ready to start laying pipes on the Turkish Stream offshore section in several days, the company’s CEO Alexei Miller told Russian President Vladimir Putin on May 4, as Russia’s TASS reported.

Putin has ordered Gazprom to start laying pipes on sea stretch of Turkish Stream pipeline.

“We will be ready to start laying the Turkish Stream gas pipeline in several days,” Miller said, as quoted by the Russian news agency.

The Turkish Stream natural gas pipeline project agreement between Turkey and Russia was signed on Oct. 10, 2016, and ratified by Russian President Vladimir Putin on Feb. 7.

The project, which was announced by Putin during a 2014 visit to Turkey, is set to carry gas from Russia under the Black Sea to Turkey’s Thrace region.

One line, with 15.75 billion cubic meters of capacity, is expected to supply the Turkish market, while a second line will carry gas to Europe.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a big deal, in light of the US government's objections against such a pipeline, because of how it will benefit Russia, economically, particularly in light of the natural gas which will be sold to Russia.

May 05 08:03

Russia says Syria safe zones closed to US-coalition jets

Jets from the U.S.-led coalition are barred from proposed safe zones in Syria set to be created under a deal inked by Russia, Iran and Turkey, Moscow's envoy said Friday.

"In terms of their actions in the de-escalation zones then from this moment these zones are closed for their flights," the Kremlin's envoy to peace talks in Kazakhstan Alexander Lavrentiev was quoted as saying by Interfax news agency.

"Aviation operations, especially by the international coalition forces, are absolutely not envisioned," he said.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"You can't Do that!!! We can and will bomb anywhere we want to, because you guys are all aggressors, Aggressors, AGGRESSORS!!!! We are the GOOD guys! You are all the BAD guys! Our bombs are holy. Our bombs are righteous! Our bombs are beloved by GOD!!!" -- Official White Horse Souse

May 05 06:16

U.S. AND TURKEY ON COLLISION COURSE OVER KURDISH FORCES IN SYRIA

A top adviser for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Ilnur Cevik, warned on May 3 that United States troops and equipment risk being destroyed due to their proximity to Kurdish forces in Northern Syria.

Turkey claims those fighters are aligned with the Kurdish militant group the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been waging a guerrilla war in Turkey for years.

In a radio interview on Turkish media, Cevik was asked what would happen to U.S. forces that were working with Kurdish forces that Turkey wants to attack.

“It doesn’t matter whether they are patrolling there. If those PKK terrorists continue their activities within Turkey…you know they are infiltrating from Northern Syria (into Turkey.) That’s the region they infiltrate from,” Cevik replied.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

One has to wonder just how the US is planning to carve Syria up into little fiefdoms, one of which is engineered to exist as an independent Kurdistan.

Neither Erdogan nor Syria's Al Assad are going to be very happy about this, however. And Russian troops on the ground in Syria, appear to be expanding their mission to advise and assist, and we have reports of Russian troops on the ground in Northern Syria.

Russia expands its advise and assist in Syria.Images:
Russian soldiers arrive in Northern Syria.

May 04 08:25

Breaking. Russia Setting Up Military Installations in Northeastern Syria, in YPG-Held Area

A number of Russian troops and vehicles have entered the area of the Afrin Canton controlled by fighters of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), according to photos and videos appearing online.

Pro-Kurdish media activists speculate that the Russian military is going to set up a military base or even a “joint military base” in the YPG-held area near the border with Turkey.

According to more neutral sources, Russian military servicemen are setting up two posts near the border in order to monitor possible clashes between Kurdish militias and the Turkish military.

This comes amid increasing US military activity along the Syrian-Turkish border. According to Kurdish sources in northeastern Syria, US troops have been patrolling the Kurdish-held areas bordering Turkey. Thus, US troops are a buffer force that should prevent Ankara from combating Kurdish militias in Syria.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is only a matter of time before US and Russian ground troops start to confront each other in Syria; and then, what?!?!?

May 01 10:04

Petrodollar Faces Growing Threat From the East. Payments in Gold Across Asia

While the recent raft of Sino-Saudi trade agreements benefited Chinese soft power in protecting Xinjiang, and the Saudis by diversifying their economy, China’s slow intertwining with Saudi Arabia complements the Sino-Russian alliance. Primarily, its benefits could lead to a realistic threat to the petrodollar.

The Persian rival who showed the way

In 2012/2013, the US Treasury Department, under the Obama administration, initiated a raft of sanctions in an amateurish fashion against the Central Bank of Iran. As we were told, it was done to tire and bleed Iranian economic and social life enough to draw Tehran into negotiations concerning its nuclear programme. The argument of were they/weren’t they pursuing a weaponized nuclear program isn’t important; how the Iranians circumvented these sanctions is.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Is this why we are seeing more and more demonization of Iran, to prevent it from finding more loopholes in US sanctions, and trading in a real commodity, rather than the dollar, which has absolutely no real backing behind it?!?

May 01 09:31

Tensions Grow Between US, Turkey Along Syrian Border

The US responded to last week’s Turkish attacks on allied Kurdish forces in both Iraq and Syria by deploying a growing number of US troops in armored vehicles along the Syria-Turkey border, aiming to provide some sort of buffer and to prevent more Turkish attacks.

It doesn’t seem to be working, and if anything, tensions are now growing between the Turkish government and the US, with Turkish officials unhappy that the US is getting in their way, and seeing it as amounting to the US taking the side of the Kurds against them.

Turkish President Erdogan insisted he was “deeply saddened” to see the US flag flying alongside “terrorists” from the Kurdish YPG, saying he intends to demand President Trump stop supporting the Kurds in an upcoming White House visit, adding “this needs to be stopped right now.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The question now becomes, just how far is the US government prepared to go, in preventing Turkey from interfering in the creating of an independent Kurdistan?!?

Apr 29 09:38

Beneath the waves: Has a sunken Russian ship been sabotaged?

Turkish divers could have found secret reconnaissance equipment and encryption codes on board The Liman after it mysteriously plummeted towards the sea bed in Turkish waters.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This is a valid concern. As I pointed out in "Rivero challenges the NSA", the most difficult part of breaking an enemy code is to figure out the methodology. The Allies in WW2 were not able to break the German Enigma until they captured an actual machine. Once they had that, building another machine to brute force the keys was relatively easy (not to disrespect the work of the people at Bletchley Park, of course).

If I were Russia, I would be deploying updated encryption systems with altered methodologies right now, and in an age of computer codes and software, it is much easier than it would have been for Germany to re-engineer the Enigma and ship out new hardware.

Apr 29 08:31

US Deploys Troops in NE Syria as ‘Buffer’ Between Kurds, Turkey

The US has deployed a number of special forces troops and armored vehicles along the border between Kurdish-held northeast Syria and Turkey, with most of the troops sent to the area around Darbasiya, which was the site of heavy Turkish attacks earlier this week.

Officially, US commanders say the troops are there “monitoring the situation,” though Syrian Kurds say that in practice the US deployment is an attempt to establish a “buffer” to try to limit fighting between the two sides,, which has been raging since Turkey’s airstrikes were carried out.

From Turkey’s perspective, there are two trains of thought on their recent push to attack the Kurdish YPG, who they consider “terrorists.” On the one hand, there seems to be some hope that if they can displace the Kurds enough during the buildup to the invasion of the ISIS capital of Raqqa, the US might agree to change it to a joint US-Turkey operation.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I think we will continue to see more US troops in Syria, as regime change is definitely back on the table here, in the thinking of the American deep state.

But what happens when US troops run into direct confrontation with the Russian ground troops, which are being deployed there very soon?!?

Russian Ground troops mobilising for deployment in Syria,
25 April, 2017

War with Russia over Syria?!?

This would be completely insane.

Apr 27 10:03

Our Turk Allies Just Attacked Our Kurd Allies – Whose Side Are We On?

Here’s a perfect example of how convoluted our Middle East policy is: our Turkish NATO allies attacked our Kurdish anti-ISIS ground forces in Iraq and Syria this week, killing as many as 70 fighters. The Kurdish YPG fighters make up the bulk of the US-backed “Syrian Democratic Forces” who are leading the US fight against ISIS in eastern Syria. How will the Kurds respond to the fact that their chief sponsor’s close ally keeps killing them?

Apr 27 09:30

Turkey Issues Warrants for 3,224 People Over Alleged Links to Failed Coup

Turkey has issued detention warrants for 3,224 people over suspected links to U.S.-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, news channels NTV and CNN Turk reported on Wednesday, in one of the largest operations in months against the network which Turkey blames for a failed July coup.

Apr 26 15:07

Turkey-EU relationship at ‘lowest point’ after country added to human rights watchlist

TURKEY’s relations with the European Union have reached their "lowest point" in recent times, according to Prime Minister Binali Yildirim.

His remarks came after a leading European human rights body placed Turkey back on a watchlist over concerns about the functioning of democratic institutions in the country.

The unprecedented decision to reinstate monitoring triggered a furious reaction from the Turkish government, which claims the “unjust” move was motivated by xenophobia.

Apr 26 09:08

Flynn May Have Broken Law Over Payments From Russia, Turkey: Oversight Committee

Tensions have escalated between the White House and US Congress as the likelihood of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s violation of law by receiving money from foreign governments heightens.

Apr 26 08:49

Turkey Cannot Fight PKK at Expense of Counter-Daesh Fight - US State Dept.

Turkey cannot fight the Kurdistan People’s Party (PKK) at the expense of the regional fight to defeat the Islamic State, also known as Daesh (banned in Russia), acting US Department of State spokesperson Mark Toner said in a briefing on Tuesday.

"We’re also cognizant of the threat that the PKK poses to Turkey but again the point we made to Turkey and I’m making now is that Turkey cannot pursue that fight at the expense of our common fight against the terrorists that threaten us all," Toner told reporters.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

IF the PKK were legitimised in Turkey, and given the opportunity for true representation, this would not be an issue; unfortunately, the Kurds have been persecuted and marginalised in every possible way, and Turkey is paying the price for it.

U.N. Accuses Turkey of Killing Hundreds of Kurds

Apr 26 07:07

German Weapons Giant Plans to Arm Ankara With New Turkish Panzer Factory

The German arms supplier Rheinmetall plans to build a factory in Turkey to produce tanks for the Turkish army despite concerns from opposition parties that the production will contravene German laws on arms exports.

Apr 25 08:28

TURKISH AIRSTRIKES ON KURDS COMPLICATE U.S. OPERATIONS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA

A few hour ago the Turkish airforce hit Kurdish and Yezidi positons on both sides of the Singal mountains in east-Syria and west-Iraq. Near Derik in east-Syria more than 20 bombs destroyed a YPG headquarter, a radio station and a media center. At least nine YPK fighters were killed. The YPG is the Syrian sister organization of the Kurdish PKK in Turkey. The PKK is a designated terrorist organization. Within Syria U.S. special forces are embedded with the YPG and are coordinating YPG moves against the Islamic State in Raqqa. YPK and PKK follow the anarcho-marxist theories of their leader Abdullah Öcalan who is in isolation detention in Turkey.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The question is, what can the US offer Erdogan's Turkey, to make it comfortable with in an independent Kurdistan, when the Turkish government has made it clear that ethnic Kurds in their country are persona non grata, and done their best to suppress Kurdish political parties?!?

But until, and unless, the US has something to offer Turkey, in exchange for them accepting the reality of an independent Kurdistan, these attacks will continue, and most probably worsen.

Apr 24 14:25

INTERPOL: four Israelis Arrested for Trafficking Human organs in Bulgaria, a Rabbi among suspects

A Rabbi among suspects; traffickers would approach poor Bulgarians and offer to buy a kidney for transplant in Turkey.

Apr 24 11:05

Erdogan calls Shia paramilitary groups ‘terrorists’, threatening Turkish intervention in Iraq

The Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan labeled the paramilitary forces fighting the Islamic State in Iraq as “terrorists” and part of Iran’s “Persian expansion policy”.

“Who are al-Hashd al-Shaabi? Who is backing them? The Iraqi parliament supports al-Hashd al-Shaabi, but, honestly, they are a terrorist organization, and should be known who stands behind it,” he said during an interview with the Qatari channel Al Jazeera on Wednesday.

Ahmed al-Assadi, a spokesperson of the Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU), also known as al-Hashd al-Shaabi, called Erdogan’s remarks as “a violation against an Iraqi security institution” that is “recognized by the parliament and the state”.

Hadi Al-Ameri, the former Iraqi minister of transportation and the head of the PMU Badr Organization, one of the biggest PMU forces in Iraq, in response called for a complete stop of trade with Turkey.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Just what the Middle East and Iraq need; more destabilisation, courtesy of Turkey!!

Apr 24 10:56

Turkey says it may suspend migrant deal with EU

Ankara will present a new document in May on its visa-free deal with the EU which if not accepted would put the refugee deal with the bloc at a standstill, EU Minister Ömer Çelik has said.

In an interview with private news channel CNN Turk on Aprik 22, Çelik said Turkey was doing its part in the deal with EU.

He said the refugee deal between the two sides would continue if the EU accepted Ankara’s fresh offer that would be submitted in May.

“If they accept our proposal, the [refugee] deal would be completed in a positive way, otherwise it would come to a standstill,” he said.

The EU and Turkey agreed in March last year on a plan to stop migration through illegal channels in the Aegean Sea by cracking down on human traffickers and improving the conditions of nearly 3 million Syrian refugees in Turkey.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

If Turkey reneges on this deal, all hell will break loose in Europe, which is already straining, economically and socially, from the huge impacts of previous waves of immigration from the Middle East and North Africa.

Apr 24 09:59

Turkey, After The Referendum

Turkey is a fundamentally divided society. The vote this weekend over a referendum to give the President additional powers and a longer term, showed the extent of Turkey’s divisions. The “Yes” vote, a victory for President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, was won with 25 million votes, while the “No” campaign fetched almost 24 million votes. But given the nature of electoral democracy, a fractured verdict will nonetheless mean an expansion of the powers of Mr. Erdo?an and of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).

Apr 22 07:36

Russia says metro bomber funded by 'international terrorists' in Turkey: RIA

Russian investigators said on Thursday that the man suspected of detonating a bomb on the St. Petersburg metro earlier this month had received money from an "international terrorist group" in Turkey, the RIA news agency reported.

Apr 21 09:54

A Sad Day for Turkey

There are at least 25 factors that delegitimize the referendum and its results, and once implemented, the repercussions on Turkey’s future will be dire and essentially seal the fate of the country’s prospective democracy.

Finally, whether or not the West admits it, the referendum raises serious questions about Turkey’s commitment to NATO and its importance as an ally. Erdogan has shown time and again that he is untrustworthy in the way he is dealing with Western powers.

His repeated threats to flood Europe with refugees unless he gets his way, and his challenge to the US to stop aiding its ally, the Syrian Kurds (the YPG)—whom he views as terrorists assisting the PKK in their battle against his government—must simply be rejected.

Apr 21 08:10

Turkey says close to S-400 missile purchase deal with Russia

Turkey's talks with Russia about the purchase of the S-400 air missile defense system have reached the "final stage," Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik said on Friday.

"It is clear that Turkey needs a missile defense system but NATO member countries have not presented on offer which is financially effective," Isik said during a news conference in Ankara, local broadcaster CNNTurk reported.

"Work on the S-400 has reached a final point. But the final stage does not mean let's sign a deal tomorrow morning," he added.

Apr 19 07:34

Up to 2.5 million Turkish votes were possibly ‘manipulated,’ intl observer says

It is possible that 2.5 million Turkish votes were “manipulated,” changing the results of the recent constitutional referendum, an international observer monitoring the Turkish referendum told ORF radio.

Alev Korun, an Austrian MP and member of the Council of Europe observer mission, said that there is “a suspicion that up to 2.5 million votes could have been manipulated,” as cited by Reuters.

Korun also referred to the Turkish electoral authorities’ move to accept as valid around 1.5 million unstamped ballots and envelopes.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

As I said on yesterday's radio show, no people vote away democracy. Erdogan's "victory" had to be a fraud.

Apr 19 05:20

FRAUD ALLEGATIONS TO TEST TURKISH PRESIDENT ERDOGAN’S NEW AUTHORITARIAN POWERS

US President Donald Trump was the first (and so far, to the best of our knowledge, only) Western leader to congratulate his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday on acquiring virtually dictatorial powers. But while the commanders-in-chief of NATO’s two largest armies may share a common authoritarian impulse, Trump may yet come to see Erdogan as a bad role model. Experts say the Turkish president’s proclamation of victory in Sunday’s referendum could bring short-term stability in NATO’s Middle Eastern anchor, but the future of this deeply divided country looks far from stable.

Apr 18 10:21

Video: Is Turkey Becoming A Dictatorship?: Erdogan Claims Victory In Vote To Give President Sweeping Powers

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has claimed victory in Sunday’s referendum over whether to give sweeping powers to the president, but Turkey’s main opposition party is calling for the the referendum results to be tossed out, citing irregularities.

Apr 18 08:41

TRUMP ENTHRONES ERDOGAN - DESTROYS ALL TRUST IN U.S. DIPLOMACY

Trump contradicted his speaker, the State Department and his allies by congratulating the Turkish President Erdogan for winning Sunday's referendum vote. He undermined his diplomacy.

Sundays referendum in Turkey makes the presidential office a quasi dictatorial position that leads the executive and can, via decrees, also overrule the legislative and judiciary elements of the state. President Erdogan is now in a dictatorial position. It maybe that a majority of the Turkish voters voted for this change but it is far from certain. The number of votes in doubt because they were not taken in accordance with the legal procedures (2-3 million) is higher than slight majority lead (1.5 million) for the "yes" side.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Congratulations, President Trump, for having inflicted upon the American people yet one more disappointment in an incredible string of colossal disappointments since your inauguration.

Apr 18 08:38

A LOOK AT TURKISH ‘ELECTIONS’ IN TOONS

Monitors Say Turkish Referendum Neither Fair Nor Free

Apr 18 08:01

TURKS VOTE TO EXPAND ERDOGAN POWER

Apr 18 07:18

Turkish Soldiers, Kurdish Fighters Exchange Heavy Fire in Northern Syria

The Turkish Army soldiers and allied militants targeted heavily the positions of Kurdish fighters in five different regions in Northern Aleppo, escalating fierce clashes with the Kurds.

Apr 18 06:51

Trump Enthrones Erdogan - Destroys Trust In U.S. Diplomacy

Trump contradicted his speaker, the State Department and his allies by congratulating the Turkish President Erdogan for winning Sunday's referendum vote. He undermined his diplomacy.

Sundays referendum in Turkey makes the presidential office a quasi dictatorial position that leads the executive and can, via decrees, also overrule the legislative and judiciary elements of the state. President Erdogan is now in a dictatorial position. It maybe that a majority of the Turkish voters voted for this change but it is far from certain. The number of votes in doubt because they were not taken in accordance with the legal procedures (2-3 million) is higher than slight majority lead (1.5 million) for the "yes" side.

Apr 17 17:00

Turkey referendum: Erdogan dismisses criticism by monitors

Despite saying that the voting day was "well administered", the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe criticised the campaign, saying:

  • It was an "unlevel playing field" and the two sides of the campaign "did not have equal opportunities"
  • It was unbalanced due to the active involvement of the president and several senior officials
  • It was tarnished by a number of officials equating No supporters with terrorist sympathisers
  • State resources were misused
  • Under the state of emergency, essential fundamental freedoms were curtailed
  • Despite some measures, the legal framework remained inadequate for a genuinely democratic referendum
  • Apr 17 09:16

    Allegations Of Voter Fraud Mar Turkey Referendum

    Claims of voter fraud and other irregularities are tainting today’s critical referendum in Turkey, where voters are deciding whether to approve a massive expansion of presidential powers. The referendum, which will replace the country’s parliamentary system with a more concentrated executive system, could allow for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to remain in office until 2029.

    Given the high stakes, many Turks are on the lookout for irregularities. Videos purporting to show fraud, like voting outside of stations and voters submitting multiple ballots are going viral on Turkish social media. One video appears to show a voter emerging from his booth, then putting five envelopes into the ballot box.

    Apr 17 09:08

    EU Rapporteur For Turkey Warns Turkish Talks Will Be Suspended If Erdogan Gets "Unchecked Powers"

    Just hours after the predictable passage of today's Turkish referendum, the EU has promptly slammed the outcome, warning it threatens to slide the country's collapse into "authoritarianism" and that Turkey's accession talks with the EU will be suspended if the constitutional package is implement as per today's outcome.

    Apr 17 09:06

    McMaster ‘Doubts’ US Will Send More Troops to Syria

    In comments today on ABC’s “This Week,” National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster downplayed the chances of the US sending more ground troops to Syria, saying that it still “remains to be seen” if more troops are needed, but that he doubts the US will have to send any more.

    President Trump had appeared to rule out such deployments last week, insisting “we’re not going into Syria,” though of course US forces are already in Syria, and there are proposals still coming in calling for additional US troops to be deployed.

    The indications had been that McMaster was leading the push for more troops, however, and had even argued in favor of a deployment of some 50,000 US ground troops to fight in Syria. That McMaster is the one downplaying more troops now may suggest he’s been overruled.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    This at least temporarily ratchets down the possibility of direct US/Russian military confrontation in Syria; but for how long, if regime change continues not to be accomplished in Damascus, which is the end goal of US foreign policy here?!?

    And so far, the arming of both the Kurdish YPG, and various anti-government rebels hasn't worked at all; in fact, these appear to be historically failed US policies.

    Apr 17 08:27

    Erdogan Wins Narrow Referendum Victory, Laying Bare Turkey’s Divisions

    Supporters of Tayyip Erdogan waved flags in the streets while opponents banged pots and pans in protest in their homes, after a narrow referendum victory gave the Turkish president sweeping powers and laid the nation’s divisions bare.

    The referendum will bring the biggest overhaul in Turkish politics since the founding of the modern republic, abolishing the post of prime minister and concentrating power in the hands of the president. Unofficial results, which the opposition said it would challenge, showed a narrow victory with 51.4 percent of votes cast in favor.

    Yet the procedures used in both the campaign leading up to the referendum as well as on the day of didn’t adhere to international standards and created an “unlevel playing field,” Tana de Zulueta, head of the team of Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe observers present in Turkey, said in a news conference Monday.

    Webmaster's Commentary: 

    Through this referendum, the Turkish people have given Erdogan nearly dictatorial powers; and heaven only knows what he will wind up doing with them.

    Apr 17 06:07

    President Erdogan warns Turkish opposition's challenge to his referendum victory 'will be in vain' as his supporters hunt down and beat protesters

    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned opposition parties that their attempts to challenge his referendum victory 'will be in vain'.

    Thousands of protesters took to the street in a rally against the controversial victory, which will give President Erdogan sweeping new powers and could see him remain as president until 2029.

    It comes as shocking video from last night's demonstrations appeared to show a protester being attacked by pro-Erdogan Turks. In the clip, a person is chased down by a large group, who surround them and kick them to the ground.

    This morning, opposition parties complained of a number of irregularities in the voting, and were particularly incensed by an electoral board decision announced on Sunday afternoon to accept as valid ballots that did not bear the official stamp.

    Apr 17 06:00

    Turkish opposition calls for referendum result to be annulled over unstamped ballots

    Turkish opposition figures have called for the results of Sunday’s referendum granting new presidential powers to be annulled, citing unstamped ballots given to voters. The electoral board insists the referendum result is valid, however.

    Bulent Tezcan, deputy chairman of the main opposition Republican Peoples' Party (CHP), said Monday that the “only one way to end the discussions about the vote's legitimacy and to put the people at ease… is for the Supreme Electoral Board to cancel the vote.”

    It is illegal to count the unstamped ballots as valid, Tezcan said. He added that his party had received complaints from a number of regions where people couldn’t vote in privacy, with some ballots counted in secret, as cited by Reuters.

    Apr 16 21:15

    Flashback: WikiLeaks Emails Show Turkey Tried To Hide Corruption Evidence

    Hacked government emails, leaked and newly indexed by WikiLeaks, show that Turkey’s ruling party knowingly misled the public about previously leaked audio in which the country’s leader tells his son how to avoid corruption charges.

    The emails come from the inbox of Berat Albayrak, Turkey’s energy minister, who happens to be the son-in-law of Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, the country’s former prime minister and current president. Though per its policy, WikiLeaks doesn’t reveal its sources, the Turkish Marxist hacktivist group RedHack had previously claimed credit for and leaked Albayrak’s emails.

    At issue is the fallout from Turkey’s 2013 government corruption scandal, which led to the detention of more than 50 members of the ruling party, AKP. Despite December 2013 newspaper reports that Erdo?an’s son, Bilal, was named in a followup investigation, he wasn’t arrested.

    Apr 16 21:13

    Flashback: The Erdogan tapes

    In Turksh we have a proverb that goes, “You can chose the way you want to die.” That is where Erdogan is: If the tape is authentic, contrary to his claims — and it looks that way — it would mean he has committed a crime that would require a trial before the Supreme Court. On the other hand, if his converations were manipulated to create the tapes, how can someone who cannot even control his encrypted phones govern a country like Turkey for another 10 years?

    Apr 16 20:59

    Flashback: Erdogan cries foul over money tapes leak implicating son

    Turkey’s prime minister vowed to launch court proceedings to suppress “fabricated and treacherous” tapes of an alleged conversation with his son in which he purportedly instructed family members to hide tens of millions of euros in cash stored at his house.

    Apr 16 19:51

    Protesters in Turkey hunted down and beaten by supporters of President Erdogan after he won disputed victory in referendum to grant him more power and immediately vowed to bring back the DEATH PENALTY

    Thousands of Turkish protesters took to the street in a rally against the referendum result that will give President Erdogan sweeping new powers.

    People raided their kitchen cupboards and banged pots and pans as a symbol of defiance against the result, which could mean Erdogan will remain in power until 2029.

    Others held yellow banners in the air as they shouted 'Thief, murderer, Erdogan'.

    Apr 16 18:16

    'Yes' camp claims win in vote on new Erdogan powers

    The `Yes` camp in a referendum to give Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogangreater powers claimed victory on Sunday but the knife-edge result left the country bitterly divided with the opposition crying foul.
    Opponents fear the constitutional changes, which would grant Erdogan more power than any leader since modern Turkey`s founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and his successor Ismet Inonu, would lead the country to one-man rule.

    Apr 16 15:03

    How to bring down the elephant in the room

    The reason why I decided to tackle this issue today is that the forces who broke Trump in less than a month are also the very same forces who have forced him into a political 180: the Neocons and the US deep state. However, I think that these two concepts can be fused into on I would call the “Ziocons”: basically Zionists plus some rabid Anglo imperialists à la Cheney or McCain. These are the folks who control the US corporate media, Hollywood, Congress, most of academia, etc. These are the folks who organized a ferocious assault on the “nationalist” or “patriotic” wing of Trump supporters and ousted Flynn and Bannon and these are the folks who basically staged a color revolution against Trump. There is some pretty good evidence that the person in charge of this quiet coup is Jared Kushner, a rabid Zionist. Maybe. Maybe not.

    Apr 16 09:05

    Tense Turkey decides its 'destiny' in vote on Erdogan powers

    Turkey voted today to decide whether to expand President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's powers in a bitterly-contested referendum set to determine the future course of the key NATO member and EU hopeful.
    More than 55.3 million Turks were eligible to cast ballots on sweeping changes to the president's role which, if approved, would grant Erdogan more power than any leader since modern Turkey's founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and his successor Ismet Inonu.

    Apr 16 08:55

    Erdogan-2029? Early count results show ‘Yes’ vote winning in constitutional reform referendum

    With most of the ballots opened in the Turkish referendum on constitutional reform, over 51 percent of voters have supported expanding the powers of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, local media report.

    Around 94% of ballots have been counted, Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency says adding that the "yes'' votes are leading with 51.7%.

    #Turkey#referendum2017 unofficial overall results
    YES: 51.74%
    NO: 48.26%
    Ballots opened: 94.74%https://t.co/pCgJ7oPKXjpic.twitter.com/HUMeo6ZKG8

    — ANADOLU AGENCY (ENG) (@anadoluagency) April 16, 2017

    Apr 15 08:12

    Turkish army evacuated 70 Kurdish villages in al-Bab region

    Revolutionary Forces General Commander Hac Ehmed said the invading Turkish army evacuated 70 Kurdish villages, forced the villagers to move and settled in their collaborators.

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