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  • user warning: Table './conserva_drupal/cache_filter' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_filter SET data = '<p>TURKEY: June 26, 2019</p>\n<p><img alt=\"\" src=\"http://conservativechronicle.com/sites/default/files/Bay.gif\" style=\"width: 300px; height: 116px;\" /></p>\n<p>If the Istanbul electoral thrashing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan received June 23 eventually topples him, Turkey&rsquo;s citizens will prove once again they can protect their democracy from corruption by a hyper-empowered strongman and authoritarian Islamism.<br />\n Erdogan is on the verge of destroying Turkish democracy. He is also an emerging threat to the integrity of NATO, which means he&rsquo;s a threat to U.S. security. If &ldquo;security&rdquo; sounds vague, confront a specific. Sultan Recep (Erdogan&rsquo;s derisive nickname) threatens the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter&rsquo;s technological edge, which means he aids and abets America&rsquo;s military enemies.</p>\n<p> LET ME address NATO and then circle back to Turkish democracy and the Istanbul election, which Erdogan and his notionally Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) lost decisively.<br />\n NATO members are sovereign states. They owe their citizens honest debate on budgets and troop commitments. Despite policy and budget disagreements, NATO won the Cold War and set a record: It&rsquo;s the world&rsquo;s longest-lived military collective defense alliance &mdash; an alliance where the sovereign members pledge to defend one another against external military threats.<br />\n Turkey&rsquo;s problem-strewn participation in NATO&rsquo;s F-35 fighter program exemplifies Erdogan&rsquo;s increasingly authoritarian contempt for the type of fundamental military cooperation genuine mutual defense requires.<br />\n Turkey eagerly joined the F-35 consortium. The jet gives collective defense an edge.<br />\n Enter obstreperous Erdogan. Ignoring consequential pleas from his allies, Erdogan decided to buy the Russian-made S-400 air defense missile system. I hold him personally responsible because after his reorganization of Turkey&rsquo;s government, he is a power unto himself.<br />\n Sultan Recep&rsquo;s decision makes him a strategic enemy. If integrated into NATO&rsquo;s air defense network, the S-400 could disrupt NATO&rsquo;s collective air defense and potentially serve as a digital Russian spy tapping other networks. In real time, Moscow could locate every NATO warplane.<br />\n The technical risk is real; the trust issue is fundamental. In early June, the Pentagon began &ldquo;unwinding&rdquo; Turkish participation in the F-35 program.<br />\n I think it&rsquo;s quite fair to conclude that an election that sends Sultan Recep into retirement would ensure Turkish membership in NATO. As a bonus, the Turkish Air Force would get to fly the F- 35 with pride. (Good rumor has it the Turkish pilots who&rsquo;ve flown it like it.)</p>\n<p> TURKEY BRINGS a lot to NATO. Full Turkish partnership damages several international bad actors, first and foremost Vladimir Putin&rsquo;s crooked Russian regime. The overt record shows that since 2008, Czar Vlad has made disrupting and damaging NATO a Kremlin priority. Robust Turkish NATO membership also stymies Iran&rsquo;s robed Islamist dictators.<br />\n In late June 2019, Turkish voters in Istanbul began unwinding the source of the F-35/S-400 controversy, Sultan Recep.<br />\n Here&rsquo;s critical historical background to that election: The Turkish Republic that Mustafa Kemal Ataturk created in 1923 from the ruins of the post-World War I Ottoman empire was decidedly secular. Ataturk sought relationships with Western European democracies and pursued technical modernization. Turkey&rsquo;s democracy is Ataturk&rsquo;s legacy. To use a grander lens, Ataturk is the only man to successfully create a political system to modernize a culturally Islamic nation.<br />\n In the 2002 elections, Erdogan&rsquo;s &ldquo;moderate&rdquo; Islamist AKP defeated the Republican Peoples Party (CHP, founded by Ataturk). In 2003, Erdogan became prime minister. Year by year Turkey&rsquo;s government became less secular and more authoritarian as Erdogan forged a powerful executive. Since July 2016&rsquo;s curious coup, he has systematically jailed journalists, repressed political opponents and purged government workers.<br />\n More dirt: June&rsquo;s election was an authoritarian mulligan forced by Erdogan. The CHP won the March 31 vote in Turkey&rsquo;s three pre-eminent cities: Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. Erdogan managed to annul the Istanbul narrow tally.<br />\n March&rsquo;s Istanbul victor, Ekrem Imamoglu, won the June tally by an overwhelming margin.<br />\n Local elections in Istanbul are national bellwethers. Sultan Recep needs to go.</p>\n<p> BUT ... IF he attempts to undermine the CHP&rsquo;s victory, if he becomes increasingly oppressive, if another curious coup occurs ...<br />\n Make it easy, Sultan. Resign.</p>\n', created = 1574407951, expire = 1574494351, headers = '', serialized = 0 WHERE cid = '2:312f969d8ada55da48327fb7504b75c4' in /home/conserva/public_html/includes/cache.inc on line 112.
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Good news for NATO: Turk voters reject Erdogan’s ego-sultan regime

TURKEY: June 26, 2019

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