Turkey: The “Evasive Neutral”—Again?

 From the “It’s Getting Better All The Time”—NOT—File



Despite the ominous global and regional threat posed by an Iran armed with nuclear weapons, Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul announced several months ago, Saturday April 29 that Turkey will not allow the United States to launch any attacks on Iran from the Inchirlik airbase.


And now as reported July 25, 2008 at MEMRI’s  Turkish Media Blog (from Turkish Daily News, Gazeteport.com, July 25, 2008) “Iranian President Ahmadinejad To Visit Turkey Late August.” The invitation to Iran’s purveyor of apocalyptic, Jew-hating nuclear genocide was made by Turkey’s own “counterpart,” President Gul:



Iran‘s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is expected to pay a visit to Turkey next month at the invitation of his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gul. Discussions on both the program and the content of the visit have started and a date will be set soon. But there is still a possibility that the visit might be postponed if the government collapses in case the Constitutional Court rules to shut down the AKP.


The two neighboring countries have boosted economic, trade, energy and security ties in recent years and the energy ministers of the two sides recently signed a preliminary agreement on transferring Iranian natural gas through Turkish territory and allowing Turkish companies to develop three Iranian natural gas fields in southern Iran. According to Turkish media a couple of agreements focusing on economic relations would be signed during the presidential visit.


Turkey’s close energy and trade ties with Iran are not welcomed by the United States, which argues that they would encourage Iran not to cooperate with the international community to solve the nuclear program issue.


I am reminded of Frank Weber’s observations of Turkey’s utterly duplicitous role during World War II from his seminal “The Evasive Neutral,” when the “Republic” failed to side with the Allies against the Nazis, until it was meaningless (i.e., “declaring war” against Italy and Germany in February, 1945). Instead Turkey, exploited its “neutrality” in attempts to pursue local hegemonic goals, which only became fully apparent with Turkey’s invasion of Cyprus in 1974.


…Turkey, though bound to Britain and France in a mutual assistance treaty since October, 1939, broke her pledge to them on numerous occasions and declared war against Germany and Italy only in February, 1945, when the fighting was all but over…Throughout the Second World War, Turkey was a non-belligerent but not an ineffective bystander. By diplomacy alone, she maintained her territorial integrity against both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. She took expensive lend-lease equipment from Britain and gave only over-priced commodities in return. She deprived Germany of an Arab alliance and withheld her own alliance for the highest price. She emerged from the war with her land unscathed…


Turkish diplomacy during the war was a brilliant accomplishment by all standards except those of honesty and integrity. Only thirty years later, when they invaded Cyprus, did the Turks reveal that, after all, they had been dissatisfied with what diplomacy had gained them.

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