The US’ ‘moderate Islam’ mistake

The US’ ‘moderate Islam’ mistake

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump said, “We will stop racing to topple foreign regimes…” He continued, “Instead, our focus must be on defeating terrorism and destroying [the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant], and we will.” 

While Trump was explaining the new foreign policy concept, he also made a historic confession.  

As the president-elect has expressed, the U.S. has a long record of changing regimes in foreign countries, toppling governments and staging coups d’état. The U.S. has formed puppet administrations loyal to them, serving the interests of the U.S., Israel and Western world, in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America for years through civil strife, military coups or overt military foreign interventions.  

The most recent ones have been experienced in Iraq, Syria and Egypt. While the U.S. expected “democracy” from the Arab Spring and did not “spare” its support, when it saw that instead of democratic movement, it was radicals that had replaced the “abandoned and toppled” administrations, it hit the brakes but has yet to find a solution.  

The U.S. abandoned the shah of Iran, Saddam Hussein, Moammar Gadhafi and Hosni Mubarak the moment it saw that its interests could no longer be guaranteed. Then, it saw that democratic systems did not replace these dictators that it had supported and strengthened in time, but instead movements that had nothing to do with democracy came to these countries. The U.S. is now in a situation where it does not know what to do in Iraq, Syria, Libya and Egypt. If Trump said these words after seeing this reality, then it should be considered important. 

The last big mistake the U.S. made is the “moderate Islam” mistake. With this thesis, which is not based on any truth, it calculated that a new and sustainable order would be set with a moderate Islam model in the Middle Eastern countries and even Turkey. Well, it made a historic mistake. 

All the political movements that have emerged are radical with no association with democracy. Even though this was revealed in Afghanistan and Pakistan years ago, the U.S. continued its support for this factor and, recently, it relied upon the Fethullahist network (the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization - FETÖ) as a “model.” It took leader Fethullah Gülen under its protection, supporting him as an alternative. 

This mistake has reached such dimensions that when FETÖ attempted to seize the state with a military takeover, it remained a “spectator” and continued to protect Gülen, revealing itself.  

Even though its magnitude was not the same, the EU also has stood in the wrong place with its stance concerning the FETÖ coup. The EU is now trying to compensate for this mistake. 

The key historic mistake that the U.S. and other Western imperialist countries have made is having supported radical movements under the cover of “Islam” with the thought “we will control them later, if not replace them with moderate models.” Even though this process, which the U.S. started with the aim of weakening the Soviet Union, has turned and hit them, they are refusing to see this fact. Their stance on the FETÖ matter demonstrates this. 

As a matter of fact, if they take a look at the world order they have formulated, they can easily see what kind of a mistake they are experiencing. 

Today, the United Nations and the world order surrounding it are very far from meeting numerous needs. It is not a just order. It is absolutely not a democratic one. This order must change, although that is a separate topic. There are quite justified objections to this order in terms of international justice, human rights and the equality of nations and states. The hegemons of the current international order are resisting, not changing it, even though the real danger is not these justified objections and demands. 

The real danger is the radicals who shed blood for a new world order under the cover of “Islam.” The ideology and aim of such organizations as al-Qaeda, ISIL and Boko Haram are to create a “one world” that understands and practices Islam only the way they do, instead of a sovereign, democratic-secular, mutual and rule-obeying world order. 

Turkey is the only country which has a Muslim population where these movements have not been able to dominate. 

From the point of its value and significance, the democratic/secular Turkey which was founded in 1923 is “the reality” that the West should highlight.