Why did Turkey turn its back on the West?

July 4, 2010


On June 15, Thomas Friedman, writing in The New York Times (where else?) made the fatuous claim that the fact that the once-firmly secular Turkey was turning towards Iran and Radical Islam was all the fault of the European Union which was less than enthusiastic about Turkey with its population of nearly 74 million Muslims joining the Christian club. Having been shunned by Europe, Turkey reluctantly headed East, that is Friedman’s analysis. Anyone who has followed Turkish politics or the life and ideas of Recep Tayyip Erdogan , the present Prime Minister of Turkey who took office in March 2003, and who is the leader of the ruling Justice and Development Party [AKP], would know that Erdogan always had an Islamist agenda. In 1974, Erdogan, as a member of an Islamist youth group, wrote and performed in a vile anti-Semitic play-Mas-kom-ya, a compound acronym for “Masons-Communists-Yahudi [i.e. Jews] -which dwelt on the evil nature of all three groups. Recently, Erdogan praised another anti-Semitic work, the film Valley of the Wolves. Erdogan had grown up round Erbakan, the ousted former Prime Minister. In a chilling interview first published in English in 2007, Erbakan who is Erdogan’s mentor, and the inspiration of the entire AKP party said, “Our Prophet was sent with love and compassion, and our goal is the happiness of all six billion people in the world. We are Muslims, and our civilization has brought happiness to the entire world. This is the good, but there also is evil. Our religion says that the infidels are one nation [Millah]. That means evil is run by one control center.” Erbakan and following in his steps, Erdogan, have made no bones about eradicating Ataturk’s secularist order. Erdogan went about his task patiently. The West and useful idiots like Thomas Friedman viewed him as a moderate, even though Erdogan himself ridiculed the very idea of “moderate Islam”. Such a term, he said, is “very ugly, it is offensive and an insult to our religion, There is no moderate or immoderate Islam. Islam is Islam and that’s it”. In the words of Andrew McCarthy, Erdogan’s AKP “criminalized adultery, condemned Christianity as a polytheistic religion, loosened restrictions against glorifying Islam in public schools and against freelance Koranic instruction”. Under Erdogan, Turkey has turned towards Iran, and has worked to undermine Western diplomacy designed to halt the Mullah’s nuclear program. Erdogan has turned against Israel, a former ally, using greater and greater Islamist vocabulary to denounce her. He has also invited Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah to come to Turkey for talks. So much for Ataturk’s secularist order.