Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

Arab affairs
Editorial: The Non-Alignment Summit and Iran’s status

By Ghaleb Kandil

The Islamic Republic in Iran registered further progress in enhancing its influential position throughout the world and in the region, based on its active role in its Asian and Eastern surroundings and the elements of strength and autonomy it accumulated, thus rendering it stronger than all the pressures and blockades and allowing it to acquire a massive deterrence power in the face of the hostile adventures and threats.
 Firstly, in cooperation with Russia, China, Syria and the remaining BRICS states, Iran was able to contribute to the emergence of an international bloc including thirty countries and adopting a common vision towards the events in Syria in the face of the global war led by the United States and through which it is seeking to destroy the Syrian state and allow Israel to impose its hegemony over the region. Hence, the Tehran international meeting constituted an important and decisive step in the action aiming at besieging the colonial project targeting Syria, and consequently the new international balances, which resulted from the failure of the American-Israeli wars and invasions in the East.
 Secondly, the Non-Alignment Summit in Tehran constituted a new international forum to enhance even further the Iranian capital’s efficient and influential role at the level of the balances in the region and around the world. In the meantime, some figures and parties which stressed their wish to participate in the summit were subjected to wide American-Israeli campaigns, the most prominent of which was the attack launched against United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. Nothing has changed in the international organization which constitutes an American colony, whether at the level of its secretary general or its administrative apparatus, despite the new international equations that are starting to surface based on the Syrian repercussions which allowed Russia and China to regain their status inside the Security Council, to the point where Ban Ki-Moon’s attendance was considered as being a rebellion against the will of the White House.
 Thirdly, it is extremely unlikely that Ban Ki-Moon decided to come to Tehran without getting prior American approval, while his participation in the non-alignment summit confirms the reality of the devious and hypocritical positions adopted by Obama and his administration towards Iran. Indeed, while the American president asked his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to wait until after the presidential elections to carry out a qualitative leap at the level of bilateral negotiations with the Islamic Republic and the American handling of the Iranian nuclear file, it seems that Washington is maintaining indirect contact channels in parallel to the escalation of the pressures and conspiracies against the Islamic Republic. Hence, the American wager is on some sort of a breakthrough at the level of the war on Syria in order to besiege Iran or strip it from its most important regional ally.
 Fourthly, the outcome of the ongoing Syrian events will determine the nature of the power equations in the region and around the world. Therefore, they are perceived by Iran, Russia, China and all the independent states in all the continents as being a passageway towards freeing international relations from the hegemony and tyranny of the American colonialist that is subjecting the entire world to its will with great arrogance.
The Non-Alignment Summit is yet another event testifying for the ongoing Iranian rise and a new opportunity for the attempts to reveal the expansion of the circle of autonomous countries opposing Washington, in order to rid themselves of hegemony and deter the hostile wars, threats and pressures, knowing that many non-aligned states are governed by regimes that are collaborating with the West, at a time when the independent states which seem to constitute a minority inside the group are the most present and influential thanks to their autonomy. Hence, it was not odd for the Iranian command to perceive this conference as being an opportunity to activate its common vision with Russia and China vis-à-vis the Syrian situation, discuss the ways ways to handle it and build additional dams in the face of the Western-Zionist colonial threats facing an Arab state that is paying the price for its insistence on its independence, its defense of the Palestinian cause and its embracing of the resistance option.

News analysis: Turkish and American turmoil in light of the failure in Syria

The United States and Turkey escalated their direct interference in Syria through the enhancement of the military operations rooms, while the statements issued following the bilateral meetings that were recently held hinted to the fact that a new chapter of the attack on Syria is currently being launched.
 Firstly, the American-Turkish talks followed major defeats which afflicted the terrorist gangs in the face of the Syrian army in Aleppo among other Syrian areas that are witnessing troubles and in which terrorist gangs hosting death squads, NATO’s agents and the mercenaries of the Turkish-Gulf alliance are present. The actual talk during this meeting tackled the ways to enhance the smuggling of weapons and funds to Syria and develop the existing special and coded communication networks between the operations rooms in Turkey and the gangs of terrorism and death on Syrian soil, in order to implement the plans aiming at gathering, organizing, structuring and mobilizing the armed terrorist groups. This would be done in accordance with the satellite images and the information provided by the spies and mercenaries inside the Syrian territories in regard to the combat and logistic actions of the Syrian army, which continue to be a mystery puzzling the Western, Gulf and Turkish intelligence apparatuses in light of the outcome of the Damascus and Aleppo battles.
 Secondly, the loud statements issued by the American and Turkish officials in regard to the course of events in Syria completely contradict the statements heard in the backstage. Indeed, Arab officials quoted senior officials in Washington and Ankara as saying that the idea of toppling President Bashar al-Assad, of negotiating over the so-called conditions for a political transition of power and the attempts to sustain the war being launched by the death squads inside Syria, are being obstructed by solid walls in Syria, and by the Russian-Chinese positions. On the other hand, the Syrian army’s strength and cohesion, as well as the popular rallying around it, are continuously being confirmed, in the face of shameful scandals affecting the practices of the armed gangs receiving support from the West and the Turkish-Gulf alliance. This is causing the escalation of popular disgruntlement towards the theft, the collaboration and the terrorism prevailing over the behavior of the armed Syrian opposition groups, whether the ones operating domestically and including elements with several nationalities, or their political fronts abroad. This reality has started to constitute a serious obstacle in the face of the plan aiming at destroying the Syrian state, considering that the tools of this plan on the ground are murderers and Takfiris who are rejected by the vast majority of the Syrian people and who are, abroad, agents and mercenaries trading with the Syrian people’s blood. In the meantime, the Syrian state is advancing its national cause in defending Syria’s independence, the freedom of its people and the development of its state through reconciliation and dialogue. And it has won an important round in the political and media battle at that level.
 Thirdly, while the states involved in the war on Syria are trying to lift the morale of the terrorist gangs through lies about wide scale attacks being launched by these gangs in this or that part of the country, the Syrian official authorities did not respond to these claims, considering that those knowledgeable about the situation on the field among foreign journalists such as Robert Fisk - who exposed the structure of the gangs collaborating with the West - are confirming that the Syrian armed forces are carrying out comprehensive field operations to cleanse the country of terrorist groups and are targeting all their dens and strongholds based on well-studied plans. In the meantime, these troops are being embraced by those wishing to get rid of the turmoil and the threats affecting their security, lives and livelihood, which is why the citizens have started to reveal the locations of these dens and terrorist cells or carry weapons to fight alongside the army. This has been a key phenomenon affecting the events during the last two months.
 Fourthly, the repercussions of the involvement of the government of Ottoman illusion in Syria have gradually started to show during the last two weeks. Indeed, the sectarian strife which Erdogan wanted to export to Syria through the promotion of the idea of civil war and the use of a purely sectarian rhetoric, is now threatening Turkish stability. Hence, Erdogan is currently the object of fierce political campaigns against the backdrop of his extremist sectarian rhetoric. To the majority of the Turkish people, he has become a headline for turmoil and division inside turkey. As to the Kurdish file which was detonated by Erdogan’s foolishness, its field and military repercussions have become an open and bleeding wound inside Turkey, which is rendering the government of Ottoman illusion a security and political burden on Turkish stability due to its involvement in Syria, after it had become an economic burden when it undermined numerous commercial opportunities due to its hostility towards the Syrian state, thus paralyzing industrial and commercial facilities, blocking transit and causing the increase of its cost for the Turkish producers.
Amid this climate, the idea of a buffer zone or safe corridors which had previously pleased Erdogan, transformed into a mirage before the Syrian determination to deal with any violation affecting the country’s sovereignty and border as being a hostile act prompting a Syrian response. At this level, the American planners fear the eruption of a major regional war that would jeopardize Israel’s existence. In this context, The Guardian revealed the failure of the Turkish-American talks to reach a palpable decision in regard to this issue, and featured an American warning to Turkey against the threat of any adventure and Washington’s rejection of the establishment of buffer zones or safe corridors. The Turkish-American-Western-Gulf involvement in the global war on Syria is depleting their capabilities and margins of maneuver, while the activation sought by Washington and Ankara is a mere desperate attempt whose failure will be seen in the next few months.

News analysis: Erdogan and Turkey

Erdogan achieved rapprochement with the Turkish people after years of cultural, political, security and economic concerns, while carrying promises related to the move towards the safety shores. Moreover, he was able —under an Islamic headline— to compensate for the lost cultural identity. And through his openness vis-à-vis the Islamic and Arab worlds, the services and tourism sectors were revived and security and political wellbeing was instated amid promises to end the conflicts in Turkey’s surrounding and seek a political solution for the Kurdish issue.
Throughout a year of public Turkish interference in the Syrian crisis, the concerns are returning among the Turks, while reports issued by the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce reveal the troubles endured by the economy and the retreat caused by the obstruction of the transit lines which all go through the Syrian border.
Within a year, Turkey lost its image as the defender of the primary cause of the Arabs and Muslims, i.e. the Palestinian cause, and rushed towards fierce tensions with three among its most important neighbors, i.e. Syria, Iraq and Iran, which are neighbors and economic resources.
More importantly, the Turks are extremely concerned about the security issue following the resumption of the Kurdistan Workers Party’s operations —in a way similar to what was witnessed in the 80s and 90s of last century— but also about their army’s and cities’ involvement in a conflict with Syria, that might transform into mutual and destructive bombing targeting the main cities.
Erdogan is ill and pale, and his departure from power might constitute an opportunity for the Turkish people to regain their peace of mind. Some Turks are saying that when Syria discovered that the cost of the PKK’s presence on its soil was too much to bear for its people, it relinquished it despite the alliance between the two. They are thus assuring that Turkey should draw the lesson, considering that the cost of hosting militias dubbed the Syrian opposition is too much to bear for the Turkish people. So, does Erdogan lack the courage to ask them to leave? Or is he under the control of Washington’s orders and the millions coming from the Gulf?

Arab File


• On the field, the Syrian Arab army continued to cleanse some of the neighborhoods of the city of Aleppo from the armed groups, and was able to kill dozens of armed men and arrest others, including mercenaries carrying various nationalities. Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faysal al-Mekdad announced that Syria will cooperate with the new international envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, expecting he will try to launch Syrian national dialogue as soon as possible. He indicated following his meeting with the head of the international observers’ mission to Syria to bid him farewell: “We informed the United Nations about our approval of Brahimi’s appointment and we are looking forward to listening to the ideas he will present to ensure a possible solution to the crisis.” Al-Mekdad assured that Syria will achieve victory thanks to its people, leader and government and to the wisdom of those dealing with this difficult file. He stressed that a key part of the problem in Syria was foreign intervention, which is why he insisted that the Syrians and the Syrian command should be given an opportunity to resolve their problems.
• New United Nations envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi assured during a meeting in New York on Friday with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon that his priority will be the Syrian people’s interest. He thus said he would place the Syrian people above any other consideration and their interests above those of all the other parties. For his part, Ban Ki-Moon said that Brahimi’s main mission will be to instate peace and stability and to spread human rights in Syria.
• Syrian oppositionist Haitham al-Mannah recognized the existence of extremists within the armed groups. He said: “Today, the Syrian army is defending Aleppo’s moderate, Christian and Kurdish inhabitants in the face of a Chechnya national who wishes to establish an Islamic emirate in Syria.” He thus assured there were foreign fighters advocating Takfiri ideologies currently present in Syria, continuing that the war of the latter was denominational and did not aim at instating democracy. He added: “This behavior turned the Syrian revolution into an obscure action. The MB and those with it in the Syrian National Council know about this phenomena but are disregarding it.”


• The Al-Giza criminal court headed by Mohammad Fahim Darwish launched on Thursday its first session in the trial of Islam Afifi, the chief editor of Ad-Doustour newspaper, after he was accused of having insulted President Mohammad Morsi and carrying false reports that could harm public interest. Egyptian President Morsi issued an urgent law annulling temporary imprisonment in publication cases, in order to stop the implementation of the ruling to imprison Islam Afifi. This urgent law was ratified after the ruling had raised wide disgruntlement in the political and human rights circles in particular.
• On Friday, thousand of Egyptians demonstrated in various areas of Cairo and other cities in protest against what they dubbed the Muslim Brotherhood’s hegemony over all the capabilities of the state following the election of President Mohammad Morsi who had exited the group’s ranks. Cairo thus witnessed clashes between demonstrators opposing the Egyptian president and others supporting him.
• On the other hand, Egypt denied having received any Israeli official complaint against its military reinforcements in Sinai to pursue the terrorists, at a time when the United States supported this Egyptian step provided it is done with Israel’s approval.
• The Egyptian security forces resumed the destruction of the smuggling tunnels underneath the border between Egypt and the Gaza Strip in the Rafah region.

Israeli File

• The retreat of diplomatic relations and security coordination with Egypt were among the most prominent topics tackled by the Israeli papers issued this week. Hence, these papers considered that the Egyptian tanks in Sinai did not concern Israel as much as the quasi-severed diplomatic relations with Cairo and Egyptian President Mohammad Morsi’s successful decrease of security coordination between Egypt and Israel. The papers also spoke about the statements of former Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi against the idea of attacking Iran for the time being, indicating that the time had not come to strike the Iranian nuclear facilities.
• They also quoted Chief of Staff General Benny Gantz as saying that whoever tries to attack Israel will discover its strength and that the threats to which it is being subjected during the current stage are based on false assumptions about its actual power.
• As to Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman’s statements, they had a great impact on the political arena, as he considered that the deployment of Egyptian tanks in Sinai was a blatant violation of the Camp David accords. In a letter he addressed to the foreign ministers of the international Quartet, he also called for defining a date for the staging of general elections in the areas under the control of the Palestinian authority in order to change its president Mahmoud Abbas under claims that “he is an obstacle in the face of the peace process.”

Lebanese File

• A new round of clashes erupted in Tripoli between Jabal Mohsen and Bab al-Tebeneh, causing the fall of a number of dead and wounded, including military elements. Journalistic reports pointed to the intensive presence of armed men and non-Lebanese fighters, but also to the use of sophisticated weapons in the clashes. The Lebanese army sent additional reinforcements to the region after the population called on it to interfere and settle the situation, especially since the area’s inhabitants were besieged in their homes. In a statement, the army command called on the political leaders, regardless of their inclinations and belongings, not to interfere on the field in the city, not to fuel the disputes and to assume their responsibilities in these difficult times. It also warned against the attempts deployed by some to exploit the tense regional situation to liquidate domestic scores, which will be harmful to all the parties involved. It also announced its intention to engage in direct dialogue with the field commanders controlling the city in order to deter strife and prevent any possible explosion, assuring that the army never withdrew for one moment from the location of the clashes or its surroundings and has been implementing a military plan and deterring those violating the law.
• Prime Minister Najib Mikati stressed that the elements of the explosion were all available, but that “we are trying to distance this cup from Tripoli.” Following the extended meeting he held in his house in Tripoli, he asked Mufti Malik al-Shaar to launch an initiative and complete the reconciliation that was launched in 2009.
• On the other hand, parliament Speaker Nabih Berri assured that the airport road was a red line and that the army now had a “carte blanche to prevent its blocking again, regardless of the price. I say it clearly: whoever blocks the airport road again will have his hands cut off.”
• On Saturday, one of the eleven Lebanese hostages in Syria Hussein Omar was released by his kidnappers via Turkish mediation and was received at the Beirut International Airport by a wide popular and official delegation. Omar said in television statements that he was informed by the kidnaping group that the remaining Lebanese hostages - who were taken by elements from the Free Syrian Army as they were returning from their pilgrimage - will be released in five days. It is worth mentioning that upon his arrival to the Turkish territories, Omar was quoted by Al-Jazeera channel as saying that he was never a hostage or a detainee, rather the revolutionaries’ guest. For his part, Interior Minister Marwan Charbel was present at the Beirut airport to receive Omar and said that the Turks were trying to release the remaining hostages.

New Orient News ">New Orient News