Bibi [Israel] and Erdogan [Turkey] Embrace After a Six Year Hiatus of Acrimony!
When the world’s attention is on the EU/Brexit, I would like to congratulate two of my favorite villains: Bibi & Erdogan for normalizing relations between the two countries after six years.In an extremely brilliant strategic movement, both leaders spent months negotiation a deal that restores normal relations between the Jewish State and the primarily Sunni Muslim State.
Not bad for two enemies who have been fighting over a raid which happened six years ago! Reminder: 10 Turkish activists were killed by Israeli navy commandoes when the Turkish boat, Mavi Marmara, tried to break an Israeli blockade of Hamas controlled Gaza Strip.
This new agreement specifies the following:
- Israeli government apologized for the 2010 raid and agreed to pay $20M in compensation to the families of the bereaved and injured pro-Hamas Turkish activists.
- Turkey will pass laws indemnifying the Israeli soldiers involved in the raid.
- Both countries will resume Ambassadorial relations.
- Israel will explore with Turkey potential lucrative gas deals in the Mediterranean Sea.
- Military weapons, training exercises, and intelligence sharing will resume for both countries.
Why is this important?
Turkey was the first Muslim country that recognized the state of Israel in March,1949. Since that time both countries have had extensive national security/business relations which allowed Israeli jet fighters to fly/practice unencumbered in the vast lands of unoccupied eastern Turkey. In turn, Israel has provided Turkey with advanced weapons systems and made certain that Turkey was secure both internally and externally.
How did this unusual Muslim/Jewish relationship come about?
During the birth of Jewish Zionism [somewhere in the late 1920-30s] when Ben Gurion was developing a foresighted foreign policy for the non-existing Jewish state, he spent an immense amount of time with Mustafa Kamal Ataturk, then the secular leader of Turkey [believed to be a crypto-Jew from Salonika].
Both visionaries foresaw a world where both a Jewish and Muslim state could co-exist and co-operate in a meaningful relationship without resorting to constant religious bickering.
Ben Gurion went even further in his quest to surround the Middle East with Muslim ethnic tribes like the Kurds and others [non-arabs] who could eventually help the nascent state to survive in a hostile environment. For the most part, his vision was successful.
Israel is now in close partnership with Saudi Arabia, Dubai, UAE, Jordan and other Arab/Muslim states.These alliances which have been kept secret for the most part have really prospered over the past eight years as the Obama presidency correctly decided to diminish its moral/financial support of Israel.
What we are witnessing today is the growth of Israel from an infantile dependency on the USG into a more mature outgoing country forced to make alliances of all sorts with its presumed enemies—the Muslim/Arab world.
In time, ISIS will disappear. Instead we will see a new balance of relationships where Israel will continue to be a conduit between the Sunni Arab states and the Shi’ite Persian [non-Arab] Iranian hegemony.
Finally, strategic geopolitical and psycho-political imperatives have forced all the countries in the Middle East to make serious accommodations with each other in order to maintain political/economic stability throughout the region.
Mazel Tov and Merci—to both Turkey and Israel!
May their respective people enjoy the mutual bounties/benefits of peace.