The palace has made a golden shot
I have completely opposite views from President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on many topics, but I watch in admiration his political genius, his way of interpreting politics, his economic determination and also his “leadership stance.”
I can’t help it…
Sometimes he makes a move, he makes such a golden shot, that despite all my anger, I step aside and ask myself: “You do appreciate him, don’t you?” I reply to myself: “Yes, well done.”
Just imagine the European Union is discussing the Charlie Hebdo incident… It is settling accounts with its internal Muslim population… Islamophobia is in question and at this exact time Turkey’s President comes up to say, “Dude, I will not be begging at your door.”
Not a very important sentence; it is a typical Erdoğan stance.
But the following sentences are precisely a litmus paper for Europe. He said, “Actually, we are testing Europe. Will Europe adopt Turkey, whose population is Muslim? Are you against Islamophobia? If you are, then you have to admit Turkey into the European Union.”
You have to admit this is a very clever, subtle and to the point step. Admit it; it has a high dose of the hubris and arrogance we know so well. It also has a hint of “We have already given up, but you should give us the reason not to give up.”
Well, how can Europe reply to this challenge? Actually, they do not need to be very clever. They only have to say “We can adopt a Muslim country, but you, Tayyip Erdoğan, will you be able to adopt the democratic freedoms of the EU, its political values and its climate?”
Right there, it becomes tough for Erdoğan. It is because today’s Turkey, with its authoritarian regime and oppressed freedoms of expression, is a complete failure in anti-corruption and not a part of that geography.
Well, which one is true? The truth lies on both sides to adopt each other’s discourses. These could be concrete reasons for full membership, which will take Turkey, Europe and the world to a better place.
At the same time, they could be excuses for a historic snap.
If an Islamist Turkish leader dies, how many countries will lower their flags?
Just for the sake of thought, if a Turkish Islamist leader dies today, how many Islamic countries would fly their flags at half-mast?
Will it happen in Syria, where we supply arms in its civil war, especially to the side which is losing?
Will Egypt do it, the country three-fourths of which hate us because of siding with the Muslim Brothers?
Will Iraq do it, the country with which we interfere in its internal affairs constantly and where we have become an object of hate because we buy and sell Kurdish oil?
Will Tunisia, which is back on the road to secularism again after the last elections, do it?
Will it be in Yemen, where Turkey has become a source of hatred because arms that had been sent to the opposition were caught red-handed?
Or will it be in Libya, where even Turkish Airlines planes cannot fly, and where Turkish citizens do not have security of life anymore?
Or will Saudi Arabia do it, the country which we are contradicting because of its Muslim Brotherhood policy?
Will Iran do it, the country we are almost in a secret war with in Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Yemen?
Or will it be in United Arab Emirates, Kuwait?
Let me make a guess: Flags would fly at half-mast in Sudan where 200,000 people have been killed; in Somalia and in Gaza, they will fly at half-mast. Also, it will happen on the Iraqi and Syrian soil where the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is in control.
If you say Malaysia, etcetera, do not count on it too much.