YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 24, ARMENPRESS. The Azerbaijani advertisement on public transport in the Greek city of Thessaloniki with the words “Shushi is Azerbaijan” was removed by the efforts of the Armenian Embassy, community structures, the Greek-Armenian Chamber of Commerce and the Armenian National Committee of Thessaloniki, Ambassador of Armenia to Greece Tigran Mkrtchyan told ARMENPRESS. “We …
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Commenting on Erdoğan’s overseas military ambitions, François Mitterand’s adviser Jacques Attali tweeted: “We have to hear what Erdoğan says, take it very seriously and be prepared to act by all means. If our predecessors had taken the Führer’s speeches seriously from 1933 to 1936, they could have prevented this monster from accumulating the ways and means to do what he had announced.”
But Erdoğan can only accomplish his goals with the resources of a wealthy and mighty nation at his disposal. “This is Turkey’s Achilles heel,” said Ellis. “Foreign investors are fleeing, COVID-19 has crippled tourism and Moody’s has downgraded Turkey’s credit rating to B2, putting Turkey on a level with Egypt, Jamaica and Rwanda.”
Where does this leave us?
Well, with the increasing obvious but sad reality that Erdogan is no longer a partner to Europe’s or America’s democratic security. Instead, Erdogan requires confrontation. The United States should join with the European Union in preparing sanctions on the Turkish central bank. The Turkish lira is already at pathetic lows (in no insignificant part, thanks to Erdogan’s economic mismanagement). Let’s see whether the sultan feels so supreme when his economy implodes.
Kasparian, who has an impressive reliability track record, concluded this part of his daily bulletin by saying that his report “will be a great gift to our fellow Greeks and their intelligence. I’m sure our Greek friends and their intelligence already have this information, but if not – then here you go.”
His report on Syrian mercenaries preparing to be deployed on the Greek border comes as Stephanie Turco Williams, the top U.N. envoy for Libya, announced today that foreign mercenaries will depart “from all Libyan territories land, air and sea” within three months.
Whether Erdoğan plans to send the returned Syrian mercenaries back to Idlib, or stay within Turkey, or be deployed to the Greek border or elsewhere remains to be seen.
A senior Canadian bureaucrat testifying before MPs Thursday declined to answer questions regarding whether the Prime Minister’s Office or the Foreign Affairs Minister’s office influenced a decision to allow the export of airstrike-targeting gear to Turkey this May, equipment now allegedly being used by Azerbaijan to attack Armenians. Shalini Anand, acting director-general for the government’s …
What Erdogan is doing now can hardly be called soft power, although his security officials do not shine on the front lines in Nagorno-Karabakh. But since Erdogan’s policy is inseparable from power tools and does not exist outside of them, Turkey’s political style can rather be called “semi-hard power”. So Ankara’s influence is ensured not only through institutional channels, as the experience of the 1990s and 2000s showed, Turkey is not the most powerful. Influence is ensured through the direct presence and control of the military-power policy of partners, and in relatively harsh forms, as the Azerbaijani leader Ilham Aliyev could see. The concept of creating a single “Army of Turan” within the framework of the Cooperation Council of Turkic-speaking states, periodically voiced by a number of Turkish experts close to the ruling elite, is more than indicative. Erdogan has already felt both the taste of power and the taste of blood, so it will not be easy to lead him astray.
Turkey aside, the conflict threatens to drag in Russia, which has a defence pact with Armenia under the Collective Security Treaty Organisation – a post-Soviet military alliance.
It also risks pulling in Iran, which does not want Turkish or Syrian rebel forces on its northern border and whose territory is being hit by stray shells.
France is meant to lead EU diplomacy on the crisis via its co-presidency of the Minsk Club – a diplomatic forum for Armenia-Azerbaijan peace talks.
But that structure has remained largely inert for the past 26 years.