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12 August 2012


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To start with;

Iran's Proposal;

"Moreover, in line with Annan’s six-point plan, I once again declare Iran’s support for political reform in Syria that will allow the Syrian people to decide their destiny. This includes ensuring that they have the right to participate in the upcoming free and fair presidential election under international supervision."


Turkey's Proposal;

"US and Turkey weigh no-fly zones for Syria"



Haven't they been strategic rivals more or less continuously since the division of the Roman empire? Or at least the Persian successor states have been rivals with the various successor states of the Eastern Roman empire.


Iran's Proposal;

"Moreover, in line with Annan’s six-point plan, I once again declare Iran’s support for political reform in Syria that will allow the Syrian people to decide their destiny. This includes ensuring that they have the right to participate in the upcoming free and fair presidential election under international supervision."

This is tongue in cheek, right? You are truly trying to make a point by demonstrating how out of touch the Iranians are with reality on the ground right? And in their own country, "free and fair presidential election under international supervision" and such... Annan plan and political reform in Syria...Ohh, they sound so out of touch, unless thats what they want others to think... And ubless that's what they don't want others not to think to think. See, they invented chess.


It looks like Iran has allowed sanctuary for PKK to attack Turkey. Unlike Turkey attacking northern Iraq, this clearly creates new problems for Turkey. Perhaps it is tit for tat for Turkish action in Syria.


bth, you are correct, as well as Grimgrin above.

Iranians are playing a dangerous, hypocritical game vis a vis Turkey. Losing Syria is going to be disastorous for them, so it seems now that it is strategically worth for them to antoganize Turkey. Iran is the last piece in Turkish trial and error foreign policy. Libya, Syria and now Iran.

A while back there has been questions whether Turkey is breaking away from the West. Indeed there has been evidence to support this starting with the Israili crisis, all the way up to present. But now, AKP is coming to the conclusion that Turkey's best interests lie in acting with the West. I expect a reproachment with Israel soon as indication.


Farhad Atrushi, a Kurdish MP in Iraqi Parliament, said “If Iran says I want you to do what I want, then the Kurdistan Region president will not do that, because we are not part of Iran.”

He said the pressures from Iran on Kurdistan are linked to pressures exerted by the Iraqi government.

"...Although Hassani argues that Kurds should follow Iraq’s foreign policy in dealing with other countries in the region and broader world, Kurds seem to disagree.

“Iraq wants the Kurdistan Region to be part of its policy, and Iraq’s policy is to be aligned with Iran’s policy in the region which is against Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey and has strong relations and coordination with Syria and Lebanese Hezbollah. So it is clear where things are leading,” said Atrushi...."


bth: Very interesting article about Iran/Turkey/Kurds/Iraq. So would Turkey support the Kurds in a separation from Iraq?


Interesting article about Iranian import surge of Turkish steel caused by lines of credit that are available to Iran from Turkish state owned banks. Note financing of Ukrainian and Russian steel sales have dropped to near zero with Iran. Given the pounding the sanction plagued Iranian economy is taking, one wonders why re-bar and cement sales are up. One wonders.



"... Given these dynamics, Iran’s verbal and diplomatic offensive, including the national security adviser Saeed jalili’s very public meeting with Assad in Damascus, can be understood as having several objectives in mind.

First, it is intended to make a public case that Assad’s fall is not imminent as portrayed by his opponents. The intended message is that Assad may be in trouble, but pushing him out of power requires more than the current militarised approach.

Second, Iran hopes to highlight the dangers of continued support for the removal of Assad through foreign-backed armed insurgency without any political framework that takes into account the interests of Assad and his supporters. The policy has so far failed to remove the regime but even if it does succeed, it will underwrite the country’s disintegration with no one having control over the regional implications.

Third, Tehran is making the case that the resolution of the Syria problem will be not be possible without Iran’s involvement.

It is noteworthy that Tehran’s assessment of Ankara’s predicament is not that different from many assessments in the United States regarding the threat that the lengthening of the conflict poses for neighbouring countries. In the United States, however, the spectre of the conflict spinning out of control has mostly led to calls for increased support for the insurgency in order to remove Assad and end the conflict as soon as possible.

Unlike the United States, Iran does not have the resources to become directly involved in the expanding Syrian conflict. But it is trying to capitalise publicly on the costly but so far unsuccessful attempt to dislodge Assad. And for now, it is Turkish public opinion that is being conceived as a battleground.

Given the powerful allies that are prodding Turkey to remain committed to hastening the end of the Assad regime, Tehran’s play is a pretty weak one. But Erdogan’s Syria policy is also turning out to be a gamble that will only be redeemed if Syria does not disintegrate as a country...."


"...Under the previous Turkish leadership, the suspicion with which the secular Turkish establishment -- particularly the once-influential Turkish military -- regarded Iran was an obstacle to sustained bilateral cooperation between the two countries. Yet the election of the AKP has replaced the secular/Islamist divide with a Sunni/Shia one. This has never been so evident as following the Arab Spring, when we have seen very clearly the major policy gap between the two countries in terms of the Middle East. ..." http://english.alarabiya.net/views/2012/08/12/231743.html


Shimon Peres has come out guns blazing against Bibi and Barak; Iran is central of course. But, he makes a point of lambasting the politicos for their pussyfooting on mending ties with Turkey. I'm guessing that the rift as it affects the Israel>Turkey mil-to-mil relationship is Shimon's base concern.


Among other things Turkey needs Israeli drones to get a good look at what is happening in Syria.



IMO the Turks are receiving far better intelligence from us than they could ever receive from Israel. In re your long ago comment about banishment, i am not going to allow this blog to become the kind of sewer that so many are. pl


Prior to the incident of the Turkish ship off Gaza, Turkey was purchasing and using Israeli drones. That reportedly stopped after their military relationship fell on hard times. Then after the Syrian shoot down of the Turkish fighter this summer, it was reported that the US turned down a request from the Turkish military to fly US drones over Syria. Now its reported that PKK has been given base sanctuary in Iran. My guess is that Israel and Turkey need to cooperate on drones in the worst way right now. Israel also reportedly supplied them to Azerbaijan. Israeli drones as generally shorter range so a regional base would be important.



Drones are useful for tactical surveillinace. We can do a lot better than that. pl


Off subject, but of interest, here is a photo of Prince Bandar http://www.saudigazette.com.sa/index.cfm?method=home.regcon&contentid=20120816133317
and another reference to him here at this weeks conference in Saudi Arabia http://www.gulf-times.com/site/topics/article.asp?cu_no=2&item_no=525564&version=1&template_id=36&parent_id=16
So if he was assassinated earlier this month, it looks like he got better.


The cowardly killings on the flotilla were the final straw in a series of humiliations involving Israel. My recollection is that the disruption in commercial ties was of concern but, security types were particularly alarmed that Israeli>

So far, and despite US pressures, Turkey is still demanding an apology for the executions of her citizens before making nice with Israel again. We shall see.


An article suggesting that a cold war is emerging between Iran and Turkey.

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