Wednesday, 25 November 2015


The good thing about using proxies is that when things f**k up, you can throw then to the dogs and pretend you never knew them. That is more or less the correct attitude to have towards Turkey at the moment, after the hair-trigger shooting down of a Russian aircraft after it zipped into a tiny sliver of Turkish airspace for a few seconds.

A few facts:

According to the Turks, the Russian plane crossed 1.7 miles of Turkish territory before it was shot down. That would have taken a few seconds for a supersonic Russian jet, giving the lie to the other part of the Turkish story that they had repeatedly warned the Russian plane about intruding into their airspace.

Also it has been revealed that Turkey has violated the airspace of its Greek neighbour 2,244 times, without a single Turkish plane being shot down. This is alongside the violation of European "race space" and "cultural space" committed by Turkey, when it made no effort to prevent millions of Muslim migrants crossing over from Turkey into Greece.

The evidence is in. Turkey has clearly overreacted in this case and the Russians will be fully justified in exacting some kind of revenge, even if it is only to do what they have been doing – bombing the proxies of the Turkish proxy – but with more gusto.

The main thing to emphasize, however, is that the West must avoid getting sucked into taking Turkey’s side just because it is technically an ally. The West must close its ears to geopolitical illiterates like Marco Rubio, who has been quick off the mark with statements of shoulder-to-shoulder solidarity with the Turks. The Neocons had their chance to prove their childish theories back in 2003, and we all know how that ended.

As for the Turks, the old saying, “You made your bed, you lie in it,” applies particularly well. Ally or not, proxy or not, it is clear that in this case the Turks have overstepped the mark in the same way that a dog with rabies oversteps the command to "Sit, boy."

Vlad, switching back into KGB mode,
The best thing that America and its NATO allies can do, therefore, is to sidle away from Turkey and leave them to swing in the breeze. Whatever the Russians end up doing, whether supporting a Kurdish rebellion in Turkey or taking down a few Turkish planes, the outcome couldn’t be any worse for the West than the current Middle East mess, and probably a whole lot better and cheaper.

From the time when they first entered the Middle East in the 11th century and provoked the crusades, the Turks have been a destabilizing and dehumanizing force – except possibly for the brief period when they served as an ally against the global menace of Communism. But, in recent years, with the chaos flowing from the Arab Spring, we have seen the old Turkish traits of cruelty and sinister ambition re-emerge, leading to the destabilization of Syria and the rise of ISIS.

Whatever one thinks of ISIS – either as Satan incarnate or as a form of displaced Sunni nationalism – this is hardly the kind of thing that a prospective EU state should be involved with. Yet, despite this, idiots like David Cameron still think Turkey is an ideal candidate for joining the EU. Well, maybe it would be because it might serve as the necessary "kiss of death" to that vile organization, which needs to die before a healthier form of European unity can take its place.

NATO ally or not, the best thing is to let Turkey deal with Russia on its own. According to some reports, Putin has expressed the wish that we – the Western nations – muzzle our "rabid dog" – a flattering but misleading characterization of the West's relationship with Turkey, which clearly sees itself as the tail that should wag the dog. Better to just wash our hands of Turkey and let it bear the costs of  abusing its position as a NATO member.

Nothing would help the situation in Syria and the Middle East more than to see Turkey brought down a few notches. So, quickly and quietly, sidle away from the Turks, folks, and let the Russians know that in this case we are prepared to turn a blind eye to any revenge they may care to extract.

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