Israel is longing for February 28 days on Turkey ties

The reaction Israel showed to the postponement of the international dimension of the Anatolian Eagle War Games, the way they reflected this and the language they used should be analyzed well. If this diplomatic language is analyzed well, it will be possible to decipher both Israel’s perspective on Turkey and the diplomatic and strategic exigencies.

First let’s look at the process undergone by the international dimension of the Anatolian Eagle War Games that were announced to be postponed and not cancelled. According to Cemil Çiçek’s statement, “This decision which was made by the General Staff Headquarters at the recommendation of the Air Force was approved by the government.”  In his statement to Todays Zaman, government spokesman Cemil Çiçek felt the necessity of underscoring that the decision to delay “did not occur due to the government’s recommendation.” It was not in vain that Çiçek, known as a “deep” member of the government, emphasized this detail that was given as a technical detail of the decision. The statements made by the Israeli media and officials on the ministry level can be read as a kind of resistance effort.

Israel is intentionally following a tactic of exaggerating the traditional military-government friction in this slowing accelerating crisis. Making statements to the effect that the military has bowed to the government’s command and remained under the influence of circles opposed to Israel, it is following a method that further aggravates the situation by stressing the traditional sensitivity of the Turkish Armed Forces.

Not that Israel has no reasons that appear right to her for resorting to this means. Everyone knows that the policy of raising the level of Turkish-Israeli relations to the degree that they gained a strategic dimension was a product of the February 28th coup period when military influence was at its height. Even though relations had begun to develop step by step before the postmodern coup, during her Israeli visit former Prime Minister Tansu Çiller made pretentious, mind-boggling statements regarding the Promised Land. Only during that period did the “war on terrorism” and foreign policy and Israeli relations come under the influence of the military to a large degree.

It is a fact that relations being carried to a strategic dimension occurred at the initiative of the military bureaucracy due to weak administrations and as a product of the postmodern coup period. Israel took good advantage in a timely manner of the internal balances in Turkish politics, developments occurring in the region and the military perception of threat. Turkey almost gave the appearance of clinging to Israel’s coattails and being dependent on them in military and international diplomacy. Like Israel, the region’s loneliest and most outsider country, Turkey succeeded in isolating itself in spite of its historical, geographical and cultural base. It gave the appearance of being a country that entered the Middle East via Israel…

The past has shown this very clearly: Israel needs Turkey. In spite of this fact, with media support and the diplomatic discourse used, just the opposite idea has become widespread.

In the latest incident Israel’s attempt to develop a discourse that strains the military-civil relation –one of the fault lines of Turkish politics- is in this respect not in vain. An effort is apparently being made to use a language that implies the development of conditions for reestablishing a relationship that was the product of extraordinary conditions. Tel Aviv is reacting with well-established reflexes.

Even the “postponement” of the military maneuvers in Israel’s view is enough to blame and show Turkey as anti-Semitic. Developed in this direction, the official discourse was hoped to be spread by the channel of internal “power agents.” However, this time the anticipated reverberation did not materialize.

Turning to the probable reasons for the “postponement,” however much the Prime Minister says, “I listened to the voice of the people,” –particularly to the Arab press- more serious reasons should be sought.

In the week when visa requirements were eliminated with Syria and when decisions were made to develop common projects in many areas, maneuvers made with war planes that bomb regions bordering Turkey with the excuse of probable nuclear facilities would have been hard to explain.

More importantly, Israeli planes making maneuvers close to the Iranian border in mountainous regions during the operation could put Turkey in a very difficult position. In case of a likely Israeli attack against Iran, the suspicion of even Turkey’s indirect assistance to the attack could completely upset all the new balances the government has tried to establish. Moreover, it is no secret that Israeli planes have made investigation and training related to Iran during these maneuvers. In particular, the government would be pushed into a corner on the issue of Iran and the nuclear crisis which appears to be one of its most difficult tests.

Israel was going to spread the information and propaganda that it had gained an advantage over Iran in the maneuvers held in Turkey. This situation would both force the government into a corner and strike a blow to Turkey’s strategic interests and again push this country towards isolation in the region. Thus, concession to Israel’s blackmail would have been possible. No state with good sense would be tricked into this. For this reason Israel longs for the intoxication of February 28th.

lgili YazlarEnglish, Siyaset

Editr emreakif on October 16, 2009



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