Saturday, November 01, 2014


This is an interesting New York Times article about how Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is rapidly beefing up the executive presidency, a post that was essentially created by him as Prime Minister. Certainly there are plenty of grounds for concern about authoritarian tendencies. But the bill of particulars the article sets out for how Erdogan-era Turkey has been a difficult player in international relations includes --
  • Not letting George Bush use Turkey as a base for invasion of Iraq in 2003
  • Believing that the Sykes-Picot map-drawing is a major cause of the Middle East's problems today, and
  • Questioning why the focus on battling ISIS is not matched by any new strategy for dealing with Bashar al-Assad.

Those crazy Turks!