by Ian Greenhalgh
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a modern day Hitler and the state he leads is a criminal enterprise that, in many ways, resembles Nazi Germany. There is no freedom of the press, democracy is illusory, opponents are beaten, jailed or murdered, minorities are brutally oppressed and the military resembles a gang of thuggish enforcers for the criminal state.
The ruling group around Erdogan is nothing less than a mafia, a bunch of gangsters, just like the senior Nazis were, all of them ‘on the make’ to secure as much power, influence and wealth for themselves as possible, while at the same time, vying for the favour of the capo di tuti capi himself – Erdogan, who has created a Hitler-esque cult of personality around himself.
Erdogan even took a leaf straight out of the Hitlerian playbook by staging his own ‘burning of the Reichstag’ in the form of the fake coup that enabled him to purge the military, media, academia and other spheres of Turkish society of any and all opposition. Thus he was able to complete his seizure of all the reins of power in the nation and to eliminate any potential threats to his gangster rule.
No-one should be surprised that Turkey has sent it’s military into northern Syria to annexe territory while at the same time, committing the most brutal and murderous ethnic cleansing and genocide against the Kurdish population; a similar campaign has been waged for two decades against the Kurds and other minorities living inside Turkey’s borders, whole towns have been leveled, hundreds of thousands of innocent citizens turned into refugees..
Erdogan was one of the key figures behind the creation of ISIS; there could have been no ISIS in northern Syria and Iraq without Turkey’s support. The weapons and supplies all came through Turkey, trucked down from the Georgian port of Batumi after traversing the Black Sea from the Ukrainian port of Odessa and the Romanian port of Poti. Many of the ISIS fighters were recruited by the Turks from the displaced masses created by the violence. Syrian and Turkish men were conned into signing up, they were told they were going to fight against Kurdish insurgents and terrorists, that if they fought for a few months they would be rewarded with passports and a couple of thousand Euros, then transported to Europe to a better life.
Many were sent to Europe as Erdogan weaponised the refugees in order to attack Europe, blackmailing and bribing European leaders to accept the massive influx, resulting in unprecedented crime waves as young men, traumatised and desensitised by bloody conflict they had grown up amidst, understanding only the rule of violence, committed all manner of crimes from simple street robbery to gang rapes and murder. Often they had been supplied with drugs and encouraged by the Turkish agents provocateur in their midst.
All of Turkey’s neighbours have suffered from the malevolent interference of the Erdogan mafia, Macedonia has been wracked by violent unrest stirred up by Turkish agents, Armenia has been attacked continually by Azerbaijani forces that are under Erdogan’s control, financed, supplied, trained and equipped by Turkey, Azerbaijan itself being little more than a Turkish satrap.
Syria has suffered worst of all, for 8 years, Turkey has waged a clandestine war in northern Syria, hiding behind the disguise of ISIS, often it was the Turkish military sans their uniforms who were acting out the role of the supposed Jihadis, they carried on a murderous and brutal campaign against the population while Erdogan’s gangsters stripped the land bare of anything of value, carting away whole factories, leaving behind nothing but ruins and corpses.
Then there is the oil, stolen from the Syrian and Iranian fields in immense quantities, transported through Turkey in convoys of tanker trucks to discharge their cargo into the oil pipeline that leads from Turkey’s Mediterranean coast to the markets of Europe. Erdogan’s son oversaw this operation and it netted them billions of dollars.
It is this wholesale theft of the wealth and natural resources of northern Syria that is largely behind Turkey;s invasion. However, there is also a deeper, more disturbing agenda at play, one that was laid out by Erdogan’s foreign affairs adviser and former prime minister, Ahmet Davutoglu.
Davutoglu laid out the concept behind Erdogan’s foreign policy in the book ‘Strategic Depth,’ published in 2001, a year before the Erdogan came to power. In the book, he defined Turkey as a nation that does not study history, but writes it — a nation that is not at the periphery of the West, but at the center of Islamic civilization. Davutoglu saw himself as a grand theorist at the helm of his country as it navigated what he called the ‘river of history.’ In his mind, he and his country were not mere pawns in world politics, but the players who moved the pieces.
Davutoğlu argued that “Turkey would soon emerge as the leader of the Islamic world by taking advantage of its proud heritage and geographical potential […] Turkey must either establish economic hegemony over the Caucasus, the Balkans and the Middle East, or remain a conflict-driven nation-state that risks falling apart.”
This type of hegemony is conceptualized by Davutoğlu as a “Lebensraum” (territory claimed by a nation or state on the grounds that it is necessary for survival or growth). Davutoğlu bases his pan-Islamist vision on the political theories that were used to legitimize Western imperial expansion prior to 1945. While purporting to offer Turkey a new foreign policy for the 21st century, his writing draws on the discredited concepts of geopolitical thinkers like the German Karl Haushofer, who popularized the term “Lebensraum,” or living space, a phrase most famously employed by Germany during the 1920s and 1930s to emphasize the need to expand its borders.
According to Mr. Davutoglu, the nation states established after the breakup of the Ottoman Empire are artificial creations and Turkey must now carve out its own Lebensraum — a phrase he uses unapologetically. Doing so would bring about the cultural and economic integration of the Islamic world, which Turkey would eventually lead. Turkey must either establish economic hegemony over the Caucasus, the Balkans and the Middle East, or remain a conflict-riven nation-state that risks falling apart.
This is the underlying agenda behind Turkey’s aggressive, violent behaviour towards it’s neighbours, coupled with the plain old criminality of Erdogan’s mafia and their desire to ‘shake down’ governmnts and commit wholesale theft of wealth and resources, it is a very dangerous combination.
Thus far, Erdogan has proven to be a very slippery customer indeed, a man who has succeeded and survived by playing one side off against another, one moment working with the Americans, Israelis and Saudis in the ISIS project, the next, making overtures to the Kremlin, using their ill gotten oil wealth to buy Russian weapons systems and leveraging the deal to build a pipeline through Turkey to transport Russian oil and gas to the huge European market in order to curry favour with Putin.
So make no mistake, The Turks have nothing but nefarious intentions, their invasion of Syria has nothing to do with Turkish security or combating terrorists, it is nothing more than a most cynical attempt to seize territory that is rich in oil and water – an equally valuable commodity in the arid Middle East.
Trump may make the right noises about bringing the troops home and ending the pointless wars, but in reality, he is actively enabling Erdogan’s criminal enterprise and allowing Turkey to pillage the wealth of the region, no doubt he and his family are getting their cut of the proceeds of this blatant criminality.