WaPo publishes editorial from Fethullah Gulen on the day Erdogan meets Trump

Islamic Scholar Fethullah Gulen
Islamic Scholar Fethullah Gulen


Date posted: May 16, 2017

Jazz Shaw

If nothing else, the timing of this is certainly interesting. Yesterday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrived in Washington for his meeting with President Trump scheduled for later today. It’s an encounter which I already described as problematic at best, given Erdogan’s new status as a strongman and tyrant, and it doesn’t seem to hold the promise of much benefit on our part. And as you’ll recall, one of the main themes of Erdogan’s crushing of all dissent in his own country is his long standing claim that exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen was behind the attempted coup last summer. That’s why it seems to be a rather pointed jab for the Washington Post to publish a lengthy editorial from Gulen in their newspaper slamming the Turkish president on the day of the meeting.

Of course, virtually everything Gulen is saying in his op-ed is true, albeit with his own unique spin and a packaged denial of being involved in the coup. His critique of Erdogan’s regime is pretty much beyond question as we’ve been discussing here for months on end. And he even attempts to offer a way that western powers could help push Turkey back on the path toward true democracy, even if his approach seems a bit gauzy and pie-in-the-sky.

But the Turkey that I once knew as a hope-inspiring country on its way to consolidating its democracy and a moderate form of secularism has become the dominion of a president who is doing everything he can to amass power and subjugate dissent.

The West must help Turkey return to a democratic path. Tuesday’s meeting, and the NATO summit next week, should be used as an opportunity to advance this effort…

The people of Turkey need the support of their European allies and the United States to restore their democracy. Turkey initiated true multiparty elections in 1950 to join NATO. As a requirement of its membership, NATO can and should demand that Turkey honor its commitment to the alliance’s democratic norms.

For better or worse, Gulen is making some important points and I almost hope that both Erdogan and Trump are handed copies of this editorial before their meeting. I say “almost” because, while the message rings true, there probably isn’t a more divisive figure on the planet (in terms of the relationship between the United States and Turkey) to deliver it. We still have no way of knowing whether or not Gulen was behind the coup, was tangentially involved or is completely innocent as he claims. But what’s more important is that Erdogan believes that he was, or at least sticks to that claim in public so he can hold Gulen up as public enemy number one. Having one of the nation’s largest newspapers publishing his critique of Erdogan on the day of the meeting just seems like a pretty obvious broadside which is likely to inflame what’s already shaping up to be a tense meeting.

Then again, I’m not sure that there’s really all that much to lose here. What’s really going to come from this meeting? Erdogan has made it clear that he’s not backing down on either his attempts to get us to extradite Gulen or his ongoing assault on the Kurds. If the White House has been applying any pressure on him to release Pastor Andrew Brunson from prison it obviously hasn’t worked thus far. So I’m not clear on what our expectations should be today. In a best case scenario Trump could walk away with some sort of improved agreement on military cooperation and, just possibly, a promise for Brunson to be released. But at what cost? Are we going to give up Gulen in exchange, sending him off to what is almost certain torture and death without the benefit of a trial? Not that we owe him all that much, but it would certainly give the impression of having negotiated over a hostage release with someone who is allegedly still one of our allies.

Far more likely, assuming there aren’t already plans in place for those agenda items, is that this will wind up being some sort of grip and grin photo opportunity producing nothing more than some generic joint statement about how important the relationship between our two nations is. That winds up being a huge favor to Erdogan, giving him even more prominence and legitimacy on the world stage, while leaving the United States looking as if we’ll just continue to turn a blind eye to his despotic tendencies.

It’s too late to cancel the meeting now and I certainly hope that I’ll be proven wrong. But I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for anything wonderful to come of this.

 

Source: Hot Air , May 16, 2017


Related News

Turkmen Alevite Association and Kimse Yok Mu distribute aid to 1840 families in Ramadan

Özdemir Özdemir, president of Turkmen Alevite Association, thanked Kimse Yok Mu and expressed that Ramadan is an important time for Alevite-Sunni brotherhood. Two organizations worked together, showing a good example of solidarity and brotherhood. The Alevite association identified 1840 needy families in Ankara and distributed food packages, which were supported by Kimse Yok Mu.

65-year-old grandmother looking after twin babies as mother, father in jail for 5 months

Twin daughters of the Istanbul-based Şengün family were handed over to their 65-year-old grandmother as both E. Şengün and his wife F. were arrested after being kept under detention for 30 days. They are about to turn one with no father or mother in company.

Report: Turkey Mulling Attack On Fethullah Gulen

Turkish security services have reportedly been planning an attack on U.S.-based preacher Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric suspected of masterminding the July 15 coup plot, a number of sources confirmed. The source said a Turkish intelligence unit in the U.S. had been monitoring the Gulen’s compound for several weeks and that the security was easy to breach.

Mass firings in Turkey: ‘We have been given a social death sentence’

Some 134,000 people were fired after Turkey’s failed coup in 2016. Most are still jobless, forced to fight for healthcare and retirement benefits, and many suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Gülen’s lawyers: PM’s only correct statement is that he visited Gülen

Lawyers representing Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen dismissed on Friday remarks made by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu that Gülen rejected an invitation from Davutoğlu to return to Turkey on the grounds that “it was not time yet.”

Fethullah Gulen: I consider the coup attempt as a serious “terror coup”

The events of that night [the coup attempt] could be called as a serious terror coup. I categorically reject such accusations. The claim that I convinced the 8th biggest army in the world from 6000 miles away against its own government is an incredible slander. I would like those who are responsible for this coup attempt, regardless of their identities, to receive the punishment they deserve after a fair trial.

Latest News

This notable Pocono resident has been living here in exile since 1999

Logistics companies seized over Gülen links sold in fast-track auction

That is Why the Turkish Government could Pay 1 Billion Euros

ECtHR rules Bulgaria violated rights of Turkish journalist who was deported despite seeking asylum

Fethullah Gülen’s Message of Condolences in the Wake of the Western European Floods

Pregnant woman kept in prison for 4 months over Gülen links despite regulations

Normalization of Abduction, Torture, and Death in Erdogan’s Turkey

Turkey’s Maarif Foundation illegally seized German-run school in Ethiopia, says manager

Failed 2016 coup was gov’t plot to purge Gülenists from state bodies, journalist claims

In Case You Missed It

Hypocrisy in languages: criticizing Fethullah Gülen, English or Turkish?

‘State of rule of law suspended in Turkey, if not completely eliminated’

Hate crimes get worse in Turkey

Failed coup in Turkey hits Albany’s Turkish Cultural Center

Client fearfully waiting his turn to be tortured at Ankara police station: lawyer

Study Reveals Horrible Pattern Of Hate Speech By Erdoğan, The Chief Hatemonger In Turkey

Egyptian professor impressed with Fethullah Gulen

Copyright 2021 Hizmet News