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Emet m'Tsiyon

Friday, February 11, 2022

Why to Not Reconcile with Erdogan? Why in the first place?

Erdogan is an enemy of Israel. Will playing up to him and making concessions to him make him less of an enemy? Obviously not. So why does the present Israeli government seem ready to accept his command/invitation that President Herzog of Israel come to Turkey to meet him? Given all that Erdogan's Turkey has done to undermine Israeli control of our capital Jerusalem and to harm Israel in world public opinion [Mavi Marmara, for example], a visit by Herzog to Ankara would be humiliating for Herzog and for Israel as a state and for Israelis. It weaken Israel in the eyes of our friends in Greece, Cyprus, and the Gulf, etc.

Seth Frantzman explains the reasons not to let Herzog go to Ankara here

"Turkey’s pitch regarding Israel relations is rooted in a 1950s outlook. In this analysis, Turkey believes Israel is completely isolated in the region and therefore needs it. Turkey can thus benefit from Israel’s isolation while reaping profit. In essence, in all the discussions with Ankara or claims of reconciliation, the only narrative that comes out is that Turkey profits and Israel gets nothing.

"For instance, Turkey hosts Hamas, which murders Israelis, and it has backed Hamas extremism. Turkey’s religious authorities increasingly incite against Israel, vowing to “liberate” Jerusalem. When it reconsecrated the Church of Hagia Sophia as a mosque, its leadership compared this to helping Palestinians take over Jerusalem." [read the rest]

It might be good to send an ambassador back to Ankara, whereas now Israel is  represented there by lower level diplomats. But even in that case, we need to demand expulsion of all Hamas personnel from Turkey and end to demonizing Israel in the state-controlled Turkish press/media.

And much more.

Of course, Turkey has been a protege of Western diplomacy since  1922 [Smyrna Affair]. And Washington may be behind Erdogan's efforts to pretend to make nice with Israel --as well as behind our government's failure to dismiss Erdogan's commands out of hand.

For more on his issue, read Frantzman's articles in the JPost: here.

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