Arming mild Islamists; nonsense
The Pakistanis would not, but how many of the rest of the world still remembers the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan? Those were the Cold War times, political temperatures between the two blocks were at freezing lows and Zbigniew Brzezinski was busy explaining the tenant of the White House in Washington D.C. the merits of “Green Belt Strategy.”
The Green Belt Strategy was, of course, different than the “strategic depth” masterpiece of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, as unlike Davutoğlu’s neo-Ottomanist expansionist obsessions, Brzezinski was suggesting a containment approach to avoid an all-out war between the two superpowers. He suggested nourishing a belt of Islamist governments from Pakistan, Iran to Turkey, to form a buffer zone between the Soviets and the warm seas, and of course the oil rich regions, and thus contain the Russian bear in Afghanistan, where it would be fought with the students trained by the Pakistani military with American intelligence support at the “refugee camps” in Pakistan and so created the Taliban (students) “element.”
So far, still a little bit different from the Free Syria Army, al-Nusra or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) or such formations. Still, American intelligence, Turks, Qataris, Saudis or the Emirates are frequently mentioned as either fathering those beasts or at least breastfeeding them with affection, cash, logistics and assistance to boost their lethal capacities. Where is the enemy now? The enemy now is not the Russian bear, but the ruthless, bloodthirsty local dictators who created some sort of secular, but oppressive yet semi-democratic autocracies on lands dominated by Muslim societies. Baathist Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Crazy Colonel Gadhafi in Libya, Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, Bashar al-Assad in Syria… the list continues.
Removing these autocrats, providing democracy to the peoples of all ethnicities, clans, languages and religions of the oil and gas-rich region and installing democratic governance systems would be a great service of the Western democratic world to this backward region. One thing was forgotten: Democracy cannot grow in greenhouses. For Turks, it took almost two centuries since the first constitutional movement started in the Ottoman Palace and still Turkey has managed to become a sui generis democracy, with Turks still worshipping power. Thus the designs in Western laboratories to switch on democracy in the “wild Muslim lands” ended up offering the entire region to Salafist or Muslim Brotherhood-type political formations, as only they were organized in the societies.
The end result so far is chaos. The entire region has become ungovernable. Libya is still in turmoil. Only yesterday tens of people perished in bomb blasts in Baghdad, a reminder of the power vacuum, and in Syria, the government and the opposition have continued killing each other, with people taking refuge in Turkey in the hundreds. As if not enough, ISIL terrorists are trying to capture Kobani and thus consolidate their presence… American led “coalition” aerial bombardments, in the meantime comfort the consciences of those who ignited this pandemonium.
Afghanistan was long “liberated,” but is still trying to establish some sort of stability and security all through its territory one day. Yesterday’s Taliban was the worst enemy for some time, later a negotiating party, now is it part of the system or still trying to dictate its own terms through terrorism, that depends from which perspective the issue is approached. Pakistan, however, was in tranquility before the “Afghanistan operation” and camps hosting millions of Afghan refugees. Pakistan today is a candidate to the place of yesterday’s Afghanistan, and some parts of the country under the de facto control of the local Islamist warlords. Pakistan’s interests were brushed aside with consequent governments acting with moral values; since then, the country has gone through many full-fledged or attempted coups, still trying to restore normalcy.
Iran, thanks to the Green Belt Strategy long replaced the secular Shah Pahlavi with Shiite Islamists and has become a moral and material supporter of Hezbollah-type formations. For the past decade or so, Turkey has been under the rule of a Turkish-style Muslim Brotherhood. The number of refugees has officially exceeded 1.5 million; unofficially, Turkish officials say it is well over 2 million and uncontrollable.
Is it not the time for Turks to remember all these, particularly the Pakistani example, and try at least to stop the preparations to provide arms and training to Syrian “mild Islamists?” Who nourished al-Nusra and ISIL? Shall we stop and wait until we are all beheaded by some mild Islamists armed and trained by our state?