For how many minutes can you 'reproach' the US president? - NEDRET ERSANEL

For how many minutes can you 'reproach' the US president?

The meetings between Turkish and U.S. leaders are always important.

What increases the strategic level of the gathering besides this "standard significance" is the two countries': 1. Tensions in the relations between them, 2. Tensions in their domestic policy, and 3. Attitude in mutual regional/global crises.

In other words, if you are not interested even though the developments in your region affect you, if there are tremors in your economy and politics, if your business with the U.S. has started to control the factors mentioned, the meetings will still be watched closely, but they cannot be called "negotiations."

The length of the meetings – although it is no determining factor – is closely followed, because it is considered to be one of the factors in determining the "temperature." Wouldn't it be strange if it were to last three minutes? Or drag on for seven hours?

Especially those who see Turkey's salvation in the West, "purse their lips" when the meetings between Turkish and U.S. leaders run short, but their hearts race. They think the West is setting their "own leaders" straight and get happy for "their own salvation."

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in the U.S.: “To prevent the weakening of the state in the last period of the Ottoman Empire, sending students to the West was seen as a solution. The aim was to study their knowledge and sciences and save the Grand State from collapse through educated human resources. This sincere intention that was aimed could never be achieved. Most of the time, those who were sent to the West to study their knowledge and sciences, returned to their country by assimilating the West’s culture alone and losing their essence. Those who were expected to prepare a prescription for the salvation of their country, unfortunately became the voluntary agents, loyal disciples of the West. We witness these segments make special effort to render our country as foreign-dependent in every aspect…”

There are exceptions beyond a commonly accepted criteria such as meeting duration.

The last summit was like that.


Is the Erdoğan-Trump meeting that lasted close to 50 minutes enough to discuss the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), the meaning of U.S. help to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s (PKK) Syrian offshoot, the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing the People’s Protection Units (YPG), immigrants, Syria, Iraq, the Barzani referendum, Iran, Israel, Myanmar, the S-400s, the decisions taken for Turkish guards, the Zarab issue, Astana decisions, et cetera, each of which are separate crisis items?

It might seem surprising, but the answer to this question is hidden in President Trump’s statement: “We are closer than ever. There is a good friendship between the U.S. and Turkey and I believe this is related to the personal relationship between the two of us.”

It means: “We have a mutual understanding of the dynamics behind the problems that currently seem to be unresolvable.”

Nice. Both country leaders understand which balances they are obliged to manage and show respect as long as it does not ruin their own balance.

But are U.S.-Turkey relations really “better than ever”?

This cannot be a realistic description. At the very least there is FETÖ and the inexplicable aid the U.S. provides to Syrian terrorist organizations and its contributions to Israel’s plans to divide the region into tiny pieces.

As a matter of fact, all of these seem related to “national security.”


The grounds of the meetings between leaders is also important. Before the sides are left alone, the addressee is first pushed toward being subject them as much as possible. Currently, the U.S. is not taking these old routine steps, but Turkey is.

The joint and counter-declaration, “We are against the KRG’s independence referendum. We agree to take joint measures in coordination,” made by Iraq-Iran and Turkey in relation to the referendum announced to be held in northern Iraq, is like that.

Is the time chosen to make the announcement that Russian President Vladimir Putin will be visiting Ankara next week and that “long” meetings will be held and its “synchronization” a coincidence? Didn’t everybody’s jaws drop?

Didn’t the U.S. see this? Of course it did. But what did it do? Nothing. It does not have a quick thinking political mind and initiative.

Likewise, it is with Turkey and the region’s strong stance that Washington raised its objections to Barzani’s referendum. Surely this objection does not comply with the American state’s “corridor” plans, but at the present moment, the U.S. administration is not in a situation to protect and/or control the outcome of the referendum.

It cannot stop providing aid to the PKK/PYD either, because it has nothing else to depend on. If it loses that too, the corridor will collapse on the U.S. and it will be ousted from the region. It has prepared where it will go once it has been ousted by establishing a base in Israel for the first time.

So, 50 minutes was long. Because each case item we listed contains the fixed policies of both countries. There is almost nothing to say.

It won’t matter who you tell what Ankara said to the U.S. about their aid to terrorist organizations, nobody can look you in the eye. How many minutes can you reproach a country’s president – in the politest manner?

As a result, for countries that stand in the right/ethical position of history and the conjuncture, that use/deploy its economic, political, military and diplomatic weapons correctly, that fully prepare the files that will be laid on the table, bilateral meetings with the U.S. or another country is as long as, “we can have a cup of coffee.”

Its duration is short, yet the memory lasts long.


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