Category: Antichrist

Endgame for the U.S. -Turkey Relationship

By Caroline Glick May 29, 2018 , 9:00 am

On Monday, NATO ally Turkey withdrew its ambassador from Washington. The severe step is meant to punish the U.S. for opening an embassy in Jerusalem on Monday.

Also Monday, Turkey expelled Israel’s ambassador to Turkey. It had already withdrawn its ambassador from Tel Aviv.

In a speech at Chatham House on Monday, Turkish President Reçep Tayyip Erdogan called Israel a “terror state,” and accused Israel of carrying out a “genocide.”

Indicating his view that the U.S. is also responsible for the so-called “genocide,” Erdogan said, “I condemn this humanitarian drama, this genocide, from whichever side it comes, Israel or America.”

Turning his attention to Washington, Erdogan accused the U.S. of violating international law by recognizing Israel’s capital and moving its embassy to Jerusalem. He insisted that following the embassy move, the U.S. can no longer mediate the Palestinian conflict with Israel.

As Erdogan was condemning Israel and the U.S. in London, protesters in Ankara were burning Israeli and American flags at a mass rally. One speaker at the rally referred to the American people as “dogs.” The rally was organized by Turkey’s Islamist IHH group. IHH, which is aligned with Hamas and al Qaeda, has close relations with the Erdogan regime.

Also Monday, Turkey called an emergency meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in Istanbul. Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that immediately after the conference, a mass protest against Israel would be held at Istanbul’s central thoroughfare.

It would be easy to dismiss Erdogan’s latest moves as simply another expression of his hatred for Israel and Jews. By this line of thinking, the Turks are not hostile towards U.S. per se when Erdogan accuses the U.S. of committing genocide, and Turkish pro-regime demonstrators burn the U.S. flag. Erdogan and his followers are just sore at Washington for siding with the Jews.

That is, Erdogan’s anti-Americanism is a function of his anti-Jewish bigotry.

While it is certainly true that Erdogan is a raging anti-Jewish bigot and hater of Israel, antisemitism is only a partial explanation of his behavior.

On Thursday, Israeli Minister of Tourism Yariv Levin offered another explanation. After calling for Israelis to forego travel to Turkey, Levin said that Erdogan is striking out against Israel – and presumably the U.S. – as part of his election campaign. (Next week Turkey is holding parliamentary elections.)

Levin said, “Unfortunately, Turkey has a leader who repeatedly exploits Israel to make headlines for himself and to mobilize support ahead of elections. I would view the steps that Turkey has taken in terms of [next week’s] elections.”

The problem with explanations like Levin’s or the notion that Turkey’s anti-Americanism stems entirely from its hatred of Israel is that they ignore Erdogan’s view of elections on the one hand, and the purpose of his anti-Israel and anti-Jewish policies and his anti-Americanism on the other hand.

In regards to elections, Erdogan has made clear repeatedly over his 16 years in power that he will not allow election results to determine Turkey’s trajectory. In June 2015 elections, Erdogan’s Islamist AKP party lost its parliamentary majority. Rather than accept the loss, he called for new elections. Those elections, held in November 2015, unsurprisingly brought the desired results.

In an interview with Bloomberg on Tuesday, Erdogan would not rule out — indeed he all but admitted — that he will repeat the practice in the event his ruling AKP party fails to retain its parliamentary majority in the coming poll.

So, contrary to Levin’s assessment, Erdogan really doesn’t care about elections. His latest diatribes and actions against Israel and the U.S. do not stem from electoral considerations.

As for the role his Jew-hatred plays in determining his policies towards Israel and the U.S., while it is possible, indeed probable, that some of his policies are the result of his vituperative hatred of all things Jewish, the fact is that Erdogan uses hatred of Jews, which is widely shared by more than 70 percent of Turks, to advance a much larger goal.

To understand that goal, it is important to recognize Erdogan’s history with various U.S. administrations.

Erdogan was upheld by both the Bush and Obama administrations as a paragon of a moderate Muslim leader. To secure U.S. support, Erdogan was perfectly happy to let them believe that. But while he was basking in the support of the likes of Condoleezza Rice and Barack Obama,(who referred to Erdogan as one of five foreign leaders with whom he had formed “bonds of trust”), Erdogan repeatedly rejected the notion that there is such a thing as moderate Islam.

Erdogan never has made his true goal a secret. In his 16 years in power, he has enacted a slow motion revolution in Turkey. The Turkey he took over in 2002 was the secular republic formed by Ataturk on the ruins of the Ottoman Empire in the aftermath of World War I. Ataturk appointed the Turkish military as the constitutionally-mandated guardian of Turkey’s new secular order.

Military protection of secularism was necessary because, as Samuel Huntington explained in his book Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of the World Order, Turkey was always a “torn” society. It was never able to strike a balance between Islam, secularism, and Western identity.

Turkish scholar and former Pentagon official Harold Rhode explains in the book Ally No More: Erdogan’s New Turkish Caliphate and the Rising Jihadist Threat to the West that Erdogan represents the majority of Turks who never accepted the regime’s secularism. Since entering office, he has used public support as well as U.S. backing to dismantle the secular state over time. He replaced the secularists who controlled the media, the judiciary, civil service, law enforcement, and education with Islamists who share his goal of transforming Turkey into an Islamic state. The failed July 2016 coup gave Erdogan a pretext to purge the military brutally of all pockets of secular resistance.

Erdogan’s aspirations are not limited to Turkey. Indeed, Rhode explains, his goals extends far beyond Turkey. Erdogan intends to restore the Ottoman Empire and install himself as the caliph, or leader of the Islamic world.

As Rhode notes, Erdogan made his aspirations clear during a victory speech following his reelection to a third term as Turkish prime minister in 2011. Erdogan said, “Today, our victory here in Turkey is as important [here] as it is in Sarajevo [the capital of Bosnia]; in Izmir [Turkey] as it is in for Beirut, this victory is as important in Ankara as it is in Damascus…in Turkey as it is in Ramallah, Jenin and in Jerusalem.”

Like the Iranian regime, which shares Erdogan’s ambition to lead the Islamic world, the chief sociological obstacle Erdogan faces in achieving his goal of leading the Islamic world is that Turkey is not an Arab state. To overcome this racial impediment, Erdogan has latched onto Islamic hatred of Israel and of the Jews as a means to prove his worth.

Thus Erdogan competes with the Iranian regime for the mantle of Hamas’s chief sponsor. Hamas’s operational headquarters are in Istanbul. Most of the lethal terror attacks the group carried out against Israelis in recent years were directed from Hamas offices in Turkey. Turkey serves as a hub for financial transfers and money laundering operations for Hamas. And Erdogan is Hamas’s chief advocate in international forums.

For Erdogan, propagating hatred for America is another key feature of his efforts to seize leadership of the Islamic world. Since entering power, he has inculcated deep-seated hatred of the West generally, and the United States specifically, into Turkish society. Television shows, movies and books have been released that spew conspiracy theories demonizing Americans and America.

It seems a day doesn’t go by without Erdogan or one of his underlings saying or doing something deeply hostile to Israel, or a report emerging about another Turkish policy adopted to harm the Jewish state. Likewise, it seems a week doesn’t go by without Erdogan saying or doing something deeply hostile to the U.S., its citizens, or its strategic interests.

This week, Israel’s foreign ministry debated whether or not to cut off diplomatic relations with Turkey altogether. As Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely explained in a radio interview Thursday, the decision was made to keep formal ties intact. Most of the flights of Israel’s national airline, El Al, overfly Turkish airspace, Israel has considerable trade with Turkey, and Turkey has a significant Jewish community that is increasingly at risk, she explained.

While this is all true, given Erdogan’s desired end state, it is clear that Israel should have contingency plans ready to surmount the challenges to air travel and trade for the day Erdogan cuts off relations with Jerusalem.

Parallel to Israel’s discussions, it is reasonable to assume that Erdogan’s viciously anti-American statements and actions have provoked Washington policymakers to conduct cost-benefit analyses of Turkey’s continued membership in NATO. The reasoning presumably concludes that it is better for the U.S. to betray its Kurdish allies in Syria and Iraq and other shocking displays of Turkish treachery than lose its bases in Turkey.

While these considerations are not ridiculous, like Israel’s assessment of the desirability of continued diplomatic ties to Erdogan’s Turkey, they are largely missing the point.

Sixteen  years ago, Erdogan launched Turkey on a trajectory that is implacably hostile and antithetical to the very notion of a Turkish-U.S. alliance, let alone to continued Turkish membership in NATO.

Unless U.S. cost-benefit analyses are based on that basic fact, their conclusions are largely irrelevant to the strategic challenge Erdogan’s Turkey poses to the U.S.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9210

Erdogan Declares That Turkey Will Rebuild Its Economy On The German Model And Become A World Power In Five Years, Just In Time To Revive The Ottoman Empire

By Andrew Bieszad on May 24, 2018 in Featured, General

President Erdogan of Turkey recently stated that he wants to make Turkey into a “high income” nation as well as a world leader in manufacturing products for export:

Vowing to turn the country into a high-income nation, Turkey’s president on Thursday released the election manifesto of the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party for the June 24 elections.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan unveiled the election manifesto, titled “Strong Parliament, Strong Government, Strong Turkey,” at the Ankara Arena in the capital.

“Turkey’s new aim is to be among high-income countries,” he said, adding that with the initiatives taken over the last 16 years of AK Party rule, Turkey had climbed to the upper-middle income group.

“Turkey will not only be self-sufficient in the defense industry, but also it will become one of the leading exporting countries,” he said.

He added Turkey will improve its organizational capability with its local and national technological infrastructure in the cyber industry.

“We will boost women’s labor force participation rate to over 40 percent by the end of 2023,” he added.

Erdogan also said the AK Party will reach a high, sustainable economy along with an increase in Turkey’s share of the world economy to 1.5 percent.

Stating that Turkey plays an important role in voicing the problems and expectations of developing countries, he added: “We will strengthen our economic and political ties with various regional structures, especially the EU.

“We want all brotherly nations in our region and the world to reach better welfare, together with our nation.”

He said they would take necessary steps towards this and strengthen cooperation.

Fighting crime and terrorism

Erdogan said more effective methods will be developed to combat organized crime, cyber-crime, and drug smuggling.

“We will continue our fight against terror without any interruption,” he said.

Also stating that they would direct all resources to boost the quality of education in the new era, he pledged important reforms in every field of education.

Erdogan also said that they would support movies and TV series, touting their important role in introducing Turkish culture to the world.

He added that they would continue to support young people in every area, from employment to sports.

“We have come a long way in bringing our women to the positions they deserve. We will continue to increase women’s participation in every area, from politics to bureaucracy, culture to art, and to non-governmental activities,” he said.

Erdogan also touted new projects to solve the problems of the Turks living abroad and their children.

Science and technology

On their aims in science, Erdogan said they will lift science, technology, and research and development efforts to a new level.

He further pledged Turkey would set up a new scientific base in Antarctica in 2019.

Antarctica has served as a scientific research zone since a 1959 treaty, signed by Turkey.

Turkey’s first polar research center, Istanbul Te*-chnical University’s Polar Research Center, was founded in Antarctica in 2015.

The center’s mission is to carry out research on Antarctica and raise Turkey’s profile in the international scientific community. (source)

Currently, Turkey is listed as an “emerging” market, or what for a long time was called a “second world” nation. However, Turkey’s strength must not be underestimated. She as a population of approximately 80 million people- the same size as Germany- and by comparison Turks are younger at at average population age of 30 years (versus 45 for Germany). The Turkish fertility rate is still slightly below replacement at 2.05 children per woman, but with the exception of the tiny Faroese Islands (at 2.4), it is the highest in all of Europe.

Turkey’s ability to emerge as a potential world power has not been solely on her own doings. Turkey was and remains a central piece in the machinery of Operation Gladio because of the fact that she is one of the historical enemies of Russia. The Turkish military, which is the second largest in Europe after Russia, exists in the size and strength it has today because it was built by America, Germany, and other western European nations for the purpose of modifying the power balance against the Russians. As such, the Turkish economic growth over the last several decades is likewise tied to outside funding that has enabled Turkey to emerge as a major economic power.

Turkey’s largest trading partner as well as longest historical ally in the region is Germany and has been since the 15th century. Germany’s economy, which is the economy of the European Union and most of Europe, is built on a “manufacture-and-export” model similar to Japan’s that in combination with banks, lending money as a creditor, and then using financial leverage to extract political concessions has enabled her rise to power.

What Erdogan is saying, is that he is copying the German model for Turkey, and most likely with Germany’s direct assistance.

Note the date that Erdogan also declares he wants this goal to be realized by: 2023, the same year that the Islamic Caliphate was abolished and Turkey made into a “secular” state.

The Ottoman Empire is back, and Erdogan is going to see to it that, as he prepares to re-assert Turkey as the “protector” of Islam and the Muslim world, a revival of all of the evils of the Ottoman world.

 

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9206

Erdogan Of Turkey Just Announced That He Wants To Send A Muslim Peace Keeping Force Into Israel

By Ted on May 19, 2018 in Featured, General

The Istanbul summit, which brought together leaders of the member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, at the invitation of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that “Israel committed acts constituting crimes with the brutal support of the United States of America.”

The communiqué issued by the Istanbul Islamic Summit affirmed the determination “to take political and economic measures towards countries that recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.”

Erdogan’s OIC also wants to put in Israel what its terms as “a peace keeping force”. The statement called for “international protection for the Palestinian people,” including the “dispatch of a peacekeeping force.”

The Istanbul summit stressed the need for coordination and cooperation with the League of Arab States, the European Union, the African Union and regional and international organizations on the latest developments in Jerusalem and the Palestinian territories.

The summit called on the Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to take urgent action to establish an independent international commission of experts to investigate what it called “the crimes and massacres of Israeli forces against peaceful demonstrators in Gaza and to determine the criminal responsibility of the Israeli authorities”.

The Istanbul summit also called on the UN Security Council, the UN General Assembly and the Human Rights Council to fulfill their responsibilities to form an international commission of inquiry into the Gaza attacks and urged the issue to be included on the agenda of international institutions.

In 2017, Erdogan declared that East Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine. This is all a sign of the coming invasion of Israel, as the Scripture foretells:

For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem;
The city shall be taken,
The houses rifled,
And the women ravished.
Half of the city shall go into captivity,
But the remnant of the people shall not be cut off from the city. (Zechariah 14:2)

As we read in one report The leaders of 57 Muslim nations have called on the world to recognise “the State of Palestine and East Jerusalem as its occupied capital”.

An Organisation of Islamic Co-operation communique declares US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise the city as Israel’s capital as “null and void”.

It also says the move has signalled Washington’s withdrawal from its role in the Middle East peace process.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas earlier said the UN should take over.

In a speech to the OIC summit in Istanbul, Mr Abbas said it would be “unacceptable” for the US to be the mediator “since it is biased in favour of Israel”.

The Palestinians had engaged with the Trump administration in an attempt to agree “the deal of the century”, he noted, but had instead “got the slap of the century”.

Erdogan is the leader of the O.I.C. Organization of Islamic Cooperation (O.I.C) considered to be the Muslim ‘U.N’ coming second to the United Nations in size and global power.

OIC headquarters

Erdogan’s use of the OIC as the conduit to dealing with Trump’s decision is no coincidence. In fact it was Israel’s ‘occupation’ of Jerusalem which caused the founding of the OIC in 1969 consisting of 57 member states, the organisation states that it is “the collective voice of the Muslim world”. It was set up as result of the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the Caliphate after World War I which left a vacuum for a pan-Islamic institution. Losing the Six-Day War in 1967 provided the incentive needed where leaders of Muslim nations met in Rabat to establish the OIC on 25 September 1969.

In May last year year, Erdogan spoke about the importance of Jerusalem to Muslims around the world and urged more Turks and others to visit the city that “Jerusalem is ‘The first of the two directions of prayer, the second of mosques, the third of sanctuaries’”

This issue will fuel Erdogan to speed up the formation of a Muslim League. We warned last year about Erdogan using Jerusalem to create a Muslim League adding:

“This “league” is a united Muslim states and the O.I.C plays a major role in this affair. Remember the Scriptures: “Cush, and Put, and Lud [Turkey], and all Arabia, and Libya, and the people of the land that is in league, shall fall with them by the sword.” (Ezekiel 30:5)

Don’t say that we never told you so, way ahead of time, that you may consider the state of your spiritual affairs by becoming one of the five virgins with oil in their lamps before the coming of the Bridegroom.”

And a league it is. Just as we stated will happen is happening. Erdogan even traveled all over the Muslim world to create such a league. From Saudi Iranian relations to expressing concern at the stand-off between India and Pakistan on Kashmir, Erdogan offered to get involved in settling many issues to bring this unity together. And now since the issue of Jerusalem is coming up again this will speed the process.

So we are seeing the beginning signs of the times.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9198

DAZED AND CONFUSED: Erdogan Says Turkey Will Not Allow Israel To Steal Jerusalem From Palestinians. Huh?

Erdogan said his chief of staff’s office and foreign ministry were working to evacuate the injured from Gaza, and said that Turkey would stand by Palestine “no matter what the price”. “Even if the whole world shuts their eyes, we will not allow Israeli cruelty. We will continue to be with our Palestinian siblings not only with our hearts, but with all our resources,” he said. “We will never allow Jerusalem to be stolen by Israel.”

by Geoffrey Grider May 17, 2018

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday that the United Nations had “collapsed” in the face of events in Gaza where Israeli forces killed 60 Palestinian protesters on Monday as the United States relocated its Israel embassy to Jerusalem.

“And unto his son will I give one tribe, that David my servant may have a light alway before me in Jerusalem, the city which I have chosen me to put my name there.” 1 Kings 11:36 (KJV)

EDITOR’S NOTE: The president of Turkey, Tayyip Erdogan, seems to be a tad confused today. In giving his latest fiery tirade against all Jews everywhere in general and against the sovereign nation of Israel in particular, Erdogan made a amazingly ignorant statement. He said, and I quote that he will “not allow Israel to steal Jerusalem from the Palestinians”. Hmm. In my King James Bible, the word ‘Jerusalem’ appears 811 times, all of them in reference to Israel. Look it up, check me out. But that’s not all. There are dozens and dozens of verses where the LORD says that Jerusalem is the place where He chooses to ‘put His name’. And there is not a single reference that shows any Canaanite or Philistine, that’s what the modern day Palestinians are descended from, with the right to control the Holy City. In fact, Zechariah 14:21 shows that, in the Millennial Reign of King Jesus, all Canaanites/Palestinians will be removed completely from the House of the Lord. 

“Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the LORD of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come and take of them, and seethe therein: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts.” Zechariah 14:21 (KJV)

Turkey has been among the most vocal critics of the Israeli use of deadly force against protesters at the Gaza border and of the U.S. decision to open its new embassy in Jerusalem. It called for an emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Istanbul on Friday.

Speaking at a dinner on the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, Erdogan said the majority of the international community had failed to react to the events in Gaza, and warned that remaining silent would mean “opening a very dangerous door.”

For those of you who are not geographical scholars, here is the original land grant God gave to Abraham in bullet points:

How much of Israel belongs to the Jews? All of it, and then some. God’s land grant to Abraham is in perpetuity, and will not only last through the Millennial Reign, it will last throughout all eternity as well.

WHO’S OCCUPYING WHO? LET’S LOOK AT GOD’S ORIGINAL LAND GRANT OF ISRAEL TO ABRAHAM

“In the face of all these events, the United Nations has ended. (It has) become exhausted and collapsed,” Erdogan said. “If Israel’s bullying is met with more silence, the world will rapidly be dragged into a chaos where thuggery prevails.”

The events in Gaza have also sparked a diplomatic row between Turkey and Israel, with both countries expelling each other’s senior diplomats on Tuesday.

The dispute appears to mark the worst diplomatic crisis between the two regional powers since Israeli marines stormed an aid ship to enforce a naval blockade of Gaza in 2010, killing 10 Turkish activists and prompting a downgrade in diplomatic ties that lasted until 2016.

Erdogan, who described Monday’s bloodshed as genocide earlier this week, said Turkey had launched initiatives to get the issue onto the U.N. General Assembly’s agenda. He said Ankara was pressing members of the U.N. Security Council to be more active.

He said his chief of staff’s office and foreign ministry were working to evacuate the injured from Gaza, and said that Turkey would stand by Palestine “no matter what the price”.

“Even if the whole world shuts their eyes, we will not allow Israeli cruelty. We will continue to be with our Palestinian siblings not only with our hearts, but with all our resources,” he said. “We will never allow Jerusalem to be stolen by Israel.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9186

Turkey Expels Israeli Ambassador, Accuses Israel of ‘Genocide’

By JNS May 16, 2018 , 9:30 am

“The words of a fool lead to strife; His speech invites blows.” Proverbs 18:6 (The Israel Bible™)

Turkey has told the Israeli ambassador to the country to temporarily leave in protest of the situation in Gaza, which saw nearly 60 Palestinian rioters killed by Israeli forces on Monday.

Ambassador Eitan Naeh was summoned to the foreign ministry and told to “return to his country for a period of time,” said a Turkish foreign ministry official, AFP reported.

Turkey has also recalled its ambassadors to Israel and the United States over the Gaza situation.

Naeh had been serving in his post since December 2016, following a reconciliation agreement between Israel and Turkey stemming from a break down in relations due to the 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla incident.

At the same time, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan also lashed out at Israel, accusing the country of being a “terror state” that has committed “a genocide.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded on Tuesday, calling Erdoğan, who has long supported Hamas, of himself being involved in “terrorism and slaughter.”

Erdoğan then responded again, saying that Netanyahu leads an “apartheid state.”

“Netanyahu is the PM of an apartheid state that has occupied a defenseless people’s lands for 60+ yrs in violation of UN resolutions,” Erdoğan wrote on Twitter on Tuesday. “He has the blood of Palestinians on his hands and can’t cover up crimes by attacking Turkey.”

Israel’s Education Minister Naftali Bennett also responded to the expulsion of the Israeli ambassador and Erdoğan’s comments by blasting the compensation deal with Turkey over the Mavi Marmara incident and calling for the recognition of the Armenian genocide.

“Erdoğan is soaked with Hamas terror from head to toe. It was a severe mistake to sign a compensation deal with him, worth tens of millions of dollars, following the Marmara incident,” Bennett wrote on his Twitter account Tuesday.

Bennett, a member of the Security Cabinet, added: “At the time, I said he would return to hurt us, and I even voted against that shameful agreement, which unfortunately passed in the cabinet.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9184

Turkey: Erdoğan’s World of Terrorists Includes Everyone but Terrorists

by Burak Bekdil
May 3, 2018 at 5:30 am

  • Anyone who freely thinks for himself regarding Turkish President Erdoğan’s one-man rule, at home or abroad, can get the label “terrorist.”
  • On April 25, a Turkish court sentenced 14 staff members of the opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet to prison on charges of “terrorism,” and handed down sentences ranging from 2½ years to 7½ years.
  • When Erdoğan is not fighting hundreds of millions of “terrorists,” including almost the entire European continent, the U.S. and probably half his own nation, he is busy cultivating deeper ties with countries such as Russia, Sudan and Iran.

Many Middle East despots have historically accused the free world of being terrorists.

For Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, for instance, the entire Western civilization is a terrorist machine programmed to spill Muslim blood. Turkey’s strongman, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, is no exception.

In an April speech Erdoğan, evidently overcome with amnesia regarding Turkey’s invasions of Northern Cyprus and, a few weeks ago, Syria’s Afrin, called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a “terrorist.” Erdoğan told party loyalists:

“We don’t have the shame of invading on us, Netanyahu. You are an invader and right now are present in those lands as an invader. At the same time, you are a terrorist.”

In another speech, again apparently succumbing to amnesia regarding decades of Arab and Muslim wars against Israel, he said: “You [Israel] are a terrorist state. It is known what you have done in Gaza and what you have done in Jerusalem. You have no one that likes you in the world.” — as if the entire world were a fan of Erdoğan.

On April 7, Erdoğan accused France of abetting terrorists by “hosting them” at the Élysée Palace, amid a diplomatic row between NATO allies Turkey and France over Paris’s support for the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the main, Kurdish-dominated ground force that defeated Islamic State swathes of land in Syria. SDF also is an ally of the U.S. troops fighting in Syria. But Erdoğan said:

“You [France] will not be able to explain this. You will not be able to rid yourself of this terror burden… As long as the West nurtures these terrorists, you will sink”.

Then, there is the United States that “works with the terrorists:” In February Turkey warned American soldiers in Syria of the possibility of being treated as terrorists if they keep backing Kurdish militants. Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdağ threatened that U.S. soldiers risk being caught up in clashes and that Turkish troops would not make a distinction if Americans appear in Kurdish uniforms.

In the worldview of the Turkish government, almost the entire continent of Europe is made up of terrorist states. In an April 25 speech, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım accused European nations, with the exception of Spain, of supporting terrorist organizations. A few weeks earlier, Yıldırım warned Bosnia-Herzegovina, a state friendly to Turkey, that it could be a target if it supported the “Gülenist terror organization,” a reference to the Muslim cleric, Fethullah Gülen, who was once Erdoğan’s staunch ally, but now is in self-imposed exile in Pennsylvania.

Anyone who freely thinks for himself regarding Erdoğan’s one-man rule, at home or abroad, can get the label “terrorist.” On March 24, Erdoğan criticized anti-war students at one of Turkey’s best universities, Boğaziçi, calling some of the people there terrorists after a fight that erupted on campus over Turkey’s military incursion into a Kurdish enclave in neighboring Syria. He called the protesting students “communist, traitor youth” protesting a “religious, nationalist, local youth.” The “communist, traitor youth” were immediately detained.

On April 25, a Turkish court sentenced 14 staff members of the opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet to prison on charges of “terrorism,” and handed down sentences ranging from 2½ years to 7½ years. Another defendant in the case, who was not employed by Cumhuriyet and had been charged for his activities on Twitter, got the stiffest sentence, 10 years. “It has been journalism itself that has been in the dock and today’s verdicts defy logic and offend justice,” said Milena Buyum, Turkey campaigner at rights group Amnesty International. “These politically motivated sentences are clearly intended to instill fear and silence any form of dissent.”

All that is insane. When Erdoğan is not fighting hundreds of millions of “terrorists,” including almost the entire European continent, the U.S. and probably half his own nation, he is busy cultivating deeper ties with countries such as Russia, Sudan and Iran.

During a December visit to Sudan, Erdoğan called his host, President Omar al-Bashir “his brother”. Sadly, Erdoğan’s brother, al-Bashir, is a man who is wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of genocide and war crimes against his people.

Erdoğan, meanwhile, is allying with Russia and Iran, ironically, to topple Syria’s Russia- and Iran-backed dictator, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and to “bring peace to Syria” while invading the Kurdish enclaves in the country’s north.

In Erdoğan’s ideological divide, the world consists of “terrorist” countries such as the entire continent of Europe (minus Spain), plus the U.S. and half of his own country — as opposed to “noble” countries such as Russia, Sudan and Iran.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9162

Erdogan Calls Snap Elections In Turkey,

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called new presidential and parliamentary elections for June 24, more than a year earlier than scheduled. The change announced Wednesday by Erdogan speeds the implementation of the constitutional changes approved last year, which will give the president broad new powers upon completion of the next national election.

Just hours after Erdogan’s televised address Wednesday, Turkish lawmakers voted to extend the country’s state of emergency through July — the seventh such extension since Ankara first implemented it after an attempted coup in July 2016.

Speaking at the presidential palace in Ankara before the parliamentary vote, Erdogan told the country that, with political uncertainty rampant in the region, there was simply no time to lose in scheduling new elections.

“Even though the president and government are working in unison, the diseases of the old system confront us at every step we take,” Erdogan said, as translated by The Guardian. “Developments in Syria and elsewhere have made it urgent to switch to the new executive system in order to take steps for our country’s future in a stronger way.”

Turkey launched a military operation in northwest Syria earlier this year, aimed at dislodging Kurdish fighters from the region just across the Turkish border. Ankara views the People’s Protection Units, or YPG, a Kurdish militia operating in that area, as a terrorist group allied with Kurdish separatists inside its own borders — and just last month, the Turkish military seized the Syrian city of Afrin from the Kurds.

As NPR’s Peter Kenyon noted at the time, Erdogan has been riding a wave of domestic support for the operation, which “has analysts concluding that Erdogan’s political support is on the rise.”

Middle East

Turkish-Led Forces Oust Kurdish Fighters In Afrin, Syria

At the same time, Erdogan said his decision to call the vote came not solely of his own accord, but partly at the suggestion of a political ally: Devlet Bahçeli, head of the nationalist MHP party, who proposed the idea Tuesday. Bahçeli said there’s little reason to prolong the wait to implement those constitutional changes passed last year, which exchange the country’s parliamentary form of government for one that concentrates most of the power with the president.

Erdogan added during his speech that his ruling Justice and Development Party, or AKP, has entered a political alliance with Bahçeli’s party for the coming elections.

Other parties, however, have resisted the proposition — at least as long as the nearly 2-year-old state of emergency remains in place.

“There cannot be an election under emergency rule,” said Bulent Tezcan, spokesman for the main opposition party, according to Reuters. “The country needs to brought out of the emergency rule regime starting today.”

Elections held under the state of emergency are likely to hasten Erdogan’s consolidation of power — and are unlikely to come as welcome news to the European Union, which Turkey has been seeking to join. Just one day earlier, the European Commission, the EU’s executive body, expressed dismay at the recent political developments in Turkey.

“Most worryingly, in the crucial area of fundamental rights, Turkey has taken significant steps backwards,” Johannes Hahn, the commissioner considering potential new members, said while introducing a new report on Turkey’s EU bid Tuesday.

Conceding that the 2016 coup attempt “fundamentally changed the security situation” in Turkey, Hahn said Ankara’s response has been disproportionate.

“Journalists, human rights activists, members of civil society are still being imprisoned,” he added. “Since the introduction of the state of emergency, more than 150,000 people have been taken into custody, and many are still detained.”

The lengthy report itself made the matter even more plain: “Turkey should lift the state of emergency without delay.”

The Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, for its part, rejected the report’s conclusions in a lengthy rebuttal, citing its continuing fight against multiple terrorist organizations.

“Unfortunately, the European Commission showed that it was once again unwilling to understand the difficulties of the period we are passing through,” the ministry said in its statement. “Although we have explained these issues repeatedly supported by documentation, the Commission was unable to be objective and balanced.”

Regardless of the EU’s concerns about the state of emergency, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim announced Wednesday that they are proceeding without delay, according to the state-run Anadolu Agency.

“The process has officially started,” he said.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9134

Check it Out: Revised Antichrist Presentation

There is a revised Antichrist presentation on Prophecy Studies page 1. Check it out!

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9120

Rouhani, Erdogan, and Putin’s bizarre love triangle

By Wayne McLean

It appears a new regional security order is encircling Syria as the civil war grinds into its seventh year. This shift was visible last week, when the leaders of Turkey, Iran, and Russia met in Ankara to discuss solutions to the Syrian crisis. The detailed talks covered de-escalation zones, humanitarian concerns, and intra-Syrian dialogue, but the broader motive was to agree on the role of each state once the conflict ends.

A further variable framed the meeting: potential US retrenchment from the region. On the same day as the Ankara summit, Trump told reporters in Washington that he was going to “get out” of Syria “very soon”.

Then yet another variable emerged: Assad’s troops were, according to John McCain, emboldened by Trump’s retreat, leading to a chemical weapons attack on the rebel-held city of Douma.

The horrific attack was significant enough for Trump to assign Assad the puerile nickname “animal”, but the hard reality is that any US response, even military action, will be tokenistic.

The march towards Syrian retrenchment is already set on a path: $200 million has been removed from the US budget for recovery efforts, military plans have been prepared for the quick withdrawal of the 2000 US troops in Syria, and there is little domestic hunger for renewed adventurism, let alone around a conflict this complex.

The takeaway from the Ankara meeting and Trump’s rhetoric is that the regional security order around Syria is in flux, and that US efforts are likely to be replaced by a zone of anti-Western influence stretching from Beirut through to the Caspian Sea.

Turkey’s participation and positioning within this order is arguably the most radical. Under President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey has viewed itself as the natural leader of the region, but the neo-Ottoman dream of previous Turkish strategic thinkers, such as Ahmet Davutoğlu, is now dead.

Instead, Erdogan is likely to set aside his grandiose ideational prose in exchange for pragmatism. One prominent example is Turkey softening its anti-Assad position in exchange for concessions along Turkey’s southern border to counter Kurdish groups.

Turkey has another problem, which the group of three can assist it with. The country’s political capital is declining. As a NATO member, it has access to US defence mechanisms on paper, but Trump’s frigidity towards Brussels, combined with erratic grand strategies, has left Ankara isolated and concerned about its place in the European security complex.

The result is an increase in Russia–Turkey security cooperation. For example, after nearly a decade of stuttering, Turkey has committed to purchasing the S-400 missile defence system, and this month commenced construction on the Akkuyu nuclear power plant (Turkey’s first).

In short, by softening its position on Assad, and by aligning its interests closer to Moscow, Turkey regains some security currency in a dangerous neighbourhood as the US presence degenerates.

The intersection of Iranian and Turkish interests is somewhat more complex, but both countries share a common interest in defeating Kurdish forces. From this position, both Moscow and Tehran have been muted about Turkey’s actions in Afrin, as courting Ankara on this front supports their longer-term ambitions for influence on the Mediterranean coast above Lebanon.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, for his part, is happy to see Kurdish groups around the Syria–Turkey–Iran triangle weakened as a result of Turkish actions. This allows it to focus on support for Hezbollah and the consolidation of territory around the Golan Heights. This region is critical because it allows the deployment of short-range missiles capable of hitting Israel, providing a deterrent against Israeli attacks. More broadly, for Tehran, a strong Hezbollah creates a counterweight against Saudi and Wahhabi influences in the north of Syria.

This leads us to Russia. President Vladimir Putin’s largest challenge will be filling any void the US leaves behind.

Conflict and recovery is an expensive business, and discussions of Moscow’s weak economy are often glossed over in analysis. Russia is a state with a GDP on parity with Australia, not with the US or Germany. Granted, it compensates for this across other variables: territory, energy, transit routes, and nuclear capabilities.

But the bottom line is that Russia has only spent around US$2.2 billion in military activities in Syria, while the US has spent $30 billion. An increase in spending to match the US is unlikely.

Consequently, when viewed as a whole, this group of three provides mutual benefits. Turkey maintains Afrin and weakens the cause of Kurdish nationalists around the southern border. Iran gets more reliable access to its interests in the Golan Heights. Russia maintains its presence in Tartus port, which provides a cost-effective way to project power into the Mediterranean and thereby avoid perceived containment by Western forces.

The group of three deals with the apparent deficiencies of each member. Russia can ameliorate costs by burden sharing and delegating military efforts. Turkey no longer needs to appease Western normative sensibilities when engaging Kurds in a security setting. Iran can leave Kurdish security to Turkey and focus on building a Shia-led counterbalance against Israel and Saudi Arabia.

This outcome will comfort neither those recovering from the chemical attacks in Douma, nor Kurdish nationalists. But it is perhaps a glimpse of the types of alliances and compromises that will emerge as the US-led security order winds down.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=9116

Top minister: Reconciliation with ‘anti-Semite’ Erdogan may have been a mistake

As Netanyahu and Erdogan’s public clash over Gaza escalates, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan says in hindsight, perhaps 2016 detente should not have been approved

By TOI staff Today, 9:12 am 6

Israel’s 2016 reconciliation agreement with Turkey may have been a mistake, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan said Monday, as a war of words between the nation’s leaders over the Gaza Strip became increasingly vitriolic.

“Looking back, maybe the accord should not have been approved,” Erdan told Army Radio, calling Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan “an anti-Semite who continues to support Hamas.”

He said Israel must stand up “to the hostility and anti-Semitism of Erdogan. It’s odd for a country such as Turkey, that is massacring the Kurds and occupying northern Cyprus, to be accepted as a legitimate nation by the West.”

Turkey invaded areas of northern Cypus in 1974 and later annexed the territory in a move not recognized by any other country.

In January this year, Turkey launched an air and ground offensive in the enclave of Afrin in Syria to root out the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which Turkey brands a terrorist group but which is seen by the United States as a key player in the fight against Islamic State jihadists. The UN has said that 170,000 people have fled Afrin in the wake of the Turkish offensive. Dozens of civilians have been killed.

Erdan noted that he had always had issues with the 2016 deal with Ankara that ended years of diplomatic crisis.

“I’m not fully comfortable with my vote, and I wasn’t then either,” he said. He explained that “there were many considerations for and against” and that he had considered opposing it, but was convinced otherwise by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

“Looking back, maybe the accord should not have been approved,” he said. But he added that he was speaking with the benefit of hindsight, and that Israel “did not have the luxury of rejecting a compromise deal with one of the Middle East’s greatest powers.”

The 2016 reconciliation deal with Turkey saw the two countries restore ties soured by the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident six years earlier.

Relations between the former allies imploded in 2010 following an Israeli naval raid on a Turkish aid ship trying to breach Israel’s blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. The raid, in which IDF commandos were attacked by activists on board, left 10 Turks dead and several Israeli soldiers wounded.

Erdan’s comments echoed those of Yesh Atid leader Yair Lapid, who in December called the accord a “diplomatic mistake” that had “failed.” At the time Erdogan called Israel a “terrorist state” that “kills children” after US President Donald Trump’s recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

Netanyahu stepped up a war of words with Erdogan Sunday, telling him that he had better get used to an Israeli response to his rhetoric and that Israel was not prepared to accept criticism from the Turkish strongman.

“Erdogan is not used to being answered back to,” Netanyahu tweeted. “He should get used to it. ”

His comments came on a day of back and forth between the two in which Erdogan called Netanyahu a “terrorist” and Israel a “terrorist state.”

Netanyahu cited what he said were Turkey’s crimes: “Someone who occupies northern Cyprus, invades the Kurdish regions, and slaughters civilians in Afrin — should not preach to us about values and ethics,” Netanyahu said.

Netanyahu’s comments came after earlier in the day Erdogan had branded him a “terrorist.”

“Hey Netanyahu! You are an occupier. And it is as an occupier that you are on those lands. At the same time, you are a terrorist,” Erdogan said in a televised speech in Adana, southern Turkey.

“What you do to the oppressed Palestinians will be part of history and we will never forget it,” he said, adding: “The Israeli people are uncomfortable with what you’re doing. We are not guilty of any act of occupation.”

In another speech, Reuters quoted Erdogan as saying: “You are a terrorist state. It is known what you have done in Gaza and what you have done in Jerusalem. You have no one that likes you in the world.”

Netanyahu earlier Sunday lashed out at Turkey in response to its president’s claim that Israel had mounted an “inhumane attack” on Palestinians during Friday’s mass protests on the border with Israel.

“The most moral army in the world will not accept moral preaching from someone who for years has been bombing a civilian population indiscriminately,” he said, in apparent reference to Ankara’s ongoing battle against the Kurds.

“That’s apparently how Ankara marks [April Fool’s Day],” Netanyahu tweeted in Hebrew, of the Turkish condemnation.

On Saturday, Erdogan said during a speech in Istanbul, “I strongly condemn the Israeli government over its inhumane attack.”

The Israel Defense Forces said Saturday that at least 10 of those killed — the Gazans reported a death toll of 15 — were members of Palestinian terror groups, including Hamas.

On Friday, some 30,000 Palestinians took part in demonstrations along the Gaza border, during which rioters threw rocks and firebombs at Israeli troops on the other side of the fence, burned tires and scrap wood, sought to breach and damage the security fence, and in one case opened fire at Israeli soldiers.

The army said that its sharpshooters targeted only those taking explicit violent action against Israeli troops or trying to break through or damage the security fence. Video footage showed that in one case a rioter, whom the army included in its list of Hamas members, appeared to be shot while running away from the border. The army in response accused Hamas of editing and/or fabricating its videos.

As of Saturday evening, Hamas, a terrorist group that openly seeks to destroy Israel, itself acknowledged that five of the dead in the so-called “March of Return” were its own gunmen.

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