Obama’s Ally In The Mideast Just Turned Against Him In A Big Way
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is known for his flareups and his oversized ego.
Years ago, the late Middle East expert Professor Barry Rubin revealed to me that every foreign diplomat who receives an audience in the residence of the Turkish leader gets instructions on how not to provoke an outburst of anger in the conversation with Erdogan. The diplomats were advised to refrain from criticism and to pay maximal respect to the president.
The Turkish president is also known for his autocratic behavior at home. He has jailed numerous journalists who dared to publish articles that were openly critical of the Erdogan regime, and has manipulateddemocratic elections so that his AKP party would regain an absolute majority in the Turkish parliament.
The current crisis in Russian-Turkish relations is related to Erdogan’s problematic behavior.
The Turkish president thought he could stand up against Russian President Vladimir Putin after the Russian intervention in Syria, but overplayed his hand when Turkish F-16 fighter jets shot down a Russian warplane that briefly crossed into Turkish airspace from Syria in what looked like a premeditated action. Putin hit back hard against Erdogan via economic boycott measures against Turkey, but stopped short of declaring war on the country in the aftermath of the incident.
Erdogan clearly understood that he was playing with fire and backed off. He made several comments that indicated that he wanted to douse the flames; but this week, the Turkish regime stepped up its anti-Russian rhetoric once again after the pro-Assad coalition assisted by Russian airplanes succeeded in cutting off a major supply route from the Turkish border to Aleppo, Syria’s largest city. Turkey used this route to supply Sunni rebel groups with arms and money, and there’s evidence that the Turkish secret service delivered aid to Islamic State via this route.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, Erdogan’s confidant, accused Russia of randomly bombing civilian targets in Syria and said that Russia will have to pay a price for its behavior in Syria.
“The tyrants who turned Syria, my precious Aleppo and Bayirbucak into a lake of blood will one day definitely pay the price for what they have done. Nobody should forget how the Soviet forces, which were a mighty, super force during the Cold War and entered into Afghanistan, left Afghanistan in a servile situation. Those who have entered Syria today will also
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