Brog's Blog

June 21, 2010

Talking Turkey

Filed under: All Posts — brogsblog @ 5:24 pm

We Americans tend to hold Israel to a higher standard than most other nations on earth. As friends of Israel, this is our right. None of us want to see Israel behave the way Russia, Iran, China, Sudan, Sri Lanka or countless other callous nations act. I’m glad that while imperfect, Israel continues to show greater restraint, more respect for human life, and a deeper thirst for peace than any other country facing similar challenges.

Yet sometimes the hypocrisy gets difficult to take. When nations with far worse records criticize Israel in the harshest of terms – and are taken seriously while doing so – the higher standard by which we judge Israel starts looking more like a noose than a halo.

In recent months, Turkey has leapt to the front of the always fast-moving anti-Israel bandwagon. This is a most regrettable turn of events. Until recently, Turkey has been one of Israel’s most treasured allies.  As a Muslim nation capable of warm relations with the Jewish state, Turkey offered hope to all Israelis for a normal future in the Muslim Middle East. And the Turks have had a long tradition of resisting anti-Semitism. Indeed, the Jewish population of Turkey thrived like few others in the Muslim world.

Yet whether or not Israel could have better managed this relationship – including the recent interception of a Turkish vessel bound for Gaza – it is hard to avoid the conclusion that this decline in relations is a deliberate Turkish policy. For some time now, Turkey’s Islamist Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has been distancing his country from Israel and cozying up to Iran, Syria and Hamas. In the process, Erdogan has burrowed to new lows in hypocrisy.

Erdogan was one of the leading critics of Israel’s 2009 Operation Cast Lead, in which Israel sought to stop Hamas terrorists from firing thousands of rockets into Israel’s southern cities and towns. Yet when Turkey suffers so much as one attack, it does not hesitate to strike hard at those responsible. We were reminded of this fact on Saturday, when Turkey retaliated for an attack on a military outpost by the Kurdish group PKK with a series of air raids against Kurdish positions in northern Iraq. Erdogan has vowed to press ahead with the fight against the PKK “until the terrorist organization is eradicated.” Yet he demands that Israel not only refrain from fighting Hamas, but also allow Hamas to be fully restocked and resupplied.

Turkey has criticized Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza despite repeated Israeli offers to hand these territories over the Palestinians – offers which have been consistently rejected. Yet Turkey remains unwilling to even discuss its occupation of almost 40% of Cyprus and the displacement of Greeks from the Turkish zone. Turkey’s occupation is deemed illegal by the European Union and the United Nations and recognized by only one nation: Turkey.

Finally, Turkey has singled out Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians as the most serious of human rights offenses. Erdogan has gone so far as to publicly confront Israel’s President Shimon Peres – a leading Israeli dove – and shout at him: “When it comes to killing, you know well how to kill.” Yet Turkey is famously prickly about anyone trying to criticize its treatment of its Kurdish and Armenian minorities. Turkey reacts with fits of rage every time nations so much as debate recognizing the killing of over one million Armenians at the close of World War I as a genocide.

And Turkey coddles those who perpetrate genocide today. Erdogan has welcomed Sudan’s President Omar Hassan al-Bashir to Turkey even though Bashir has been indicted by the International Criminal Court on charges crimes against humanity for his role in the genocide in Darfur. Erdogan defended his action with the disturbing claim that “It’s not possible for a Muslim to commit genocide.” Erdogan has also warmly welcomed Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – a man guilty of incitement to genocide against Israel. Earlier this month, Turkey voted against imposing new nuclear sanctions on Iran in the United Nations Security Council.

I pray that relations between Israel and Turkey improve and do so quickly. And I hope that Israel does everything in its power to facilitate such reconciliation – Israel has certainly made its own mistakes and diplomatic missteps. Yet when the hypocrisy is this great, one wonders if Israel’s actions could ever placate Erdogan and his colleagues. If the only way to please Turkey is to sit back and absorb thousands of rockets from Gaza without any effective response, then the price is too high. Perhaps we should save our most fervent prayers for the next Turkish election, when Erdogan could be replaced by more reasonable voices.

David Brog is executive director of Christians United for Israel. David’s new book, In Defense of Faith: The Judeo-Christian Idea and the Struggle for Humanity being published July 6th.  You can follow David on Facebook by clicking here.



  1. I love Israël and I understand his position !

    Franck Delon

    Comment by Delon — June 21, 2010 @ 9:15 pm

  2. This only continues to beg the question, “Is it possible to be a moderate muslim??” In my opinion, absolutely not and this is the opinion of a growing majority in the United States. When are Christians going to realize that muslims worldwide want, and a lot of the time, call for the outright destruction of the Jewish State/people? There is no other way to deal with these people other than brute force and imposing our will on them. This is the only way there will be peace in the Middle East, when there is a true victor.

    Comment by Steve Apke — June 21, 2010 @ 9:31 pm

  3. Israel cannot do anything right…at least as far as the muslims are concerned. The eradication of Israel is priority number 1 to them.
    Luckily for those of us who know the Bible and understand how our Lord feels about Israel, they waste their energy and their breath. God’s hand is on her and after the dust settles, only Israel will remain standing. We would all do well to help those who don’t understand the depth and breadth of God’s love to do so. Time’s a wastin…….

    Comment by judy — June 21, 2010 @ 9:32 pm

  4. ‘I know your sitting down
    and your going out and coming
    and your raging against me.
    Because you have raged against me.
    and your arrogance has come
    to my ears,
    I will put my hook in your nose
    and my bit in your mouth,
    and I will turn you back on the
    by which you came.’ Isaiah 37
    It will be an interesting summer.

    Comment by Glenn L — June 21, 2010 @ 9:33 pm

  5. I don’t understand why anybody is surprised about Turkey’s Erdogan and other Muslims. The whole history of Islam is conquer and wipe out and having non Muslims cave in to their demands. Non Muslims just simply move elsewhere if they can escape. However, it is quickly becoming there’s no place to go because the Muslims are in every country in big numbers through birth and control of women. As the non Muslims in the territory conquered become smaller and in the size where they can be wiped out through violence, intermarriage, etc. the escape to places becomes smaller and in danger of being conquered also. Turkey has a military base on Greek land and is not about to move it because noone is forcing it to. That’s how Islam spreads because noone stands up to it and whoever does is wiped out or silenced through jail, approved murder, burning out, giving of homes and lands to Muslims, etc. as a result of false accusations. False accusations are used over and over to get rid of non-muslims in these conquered countries as Islam has the worst crooked court systems and justices in the world with justices and courts so bias, westerners can’t comprehend even the thought of a law system like theirs that approves of families being burned alive in their homes, etc.. Our children will find out.

    Comment by Original Anna — June 21, 2010 @ 10:11 pm

  6. This was expected at some point from Turkey. Just a matter of time. It’s not hypocricy…it is all about Taqiyya and Kitma, canons of Islam. Time for the West and us infidels (Jews and Christians) to wake up! The committed goal of the Muslim Brotherhood is to replace all democratic government systems on earth with Shariah Law. They are very open about it!

    Comment by Scottish Highlander — June 21, 2010 @ 10:40 pm

  7. ~ This comes as no suprise to me at all.
    As a matter fact
    I had come to expected Turkey would turn on Israel.

    My suprise, is that The Churches didn’t know it would happen!

    As The Churches have not continued to considered
    what Jesus said to them.

    Satan has a Throne.
    And his Throne still is in Pergamos/Turkey. – Rev.3:12,13

    Comment by Pandora — June 22, 2010 @ 12:06 am

  8. The problem is Islam is founded right from the beginning, politically, by a self-proclaimed Arab ‘prophet’, Mohammed – in order to justify complete annihilation of the Jews ( as a race, opposite the Arabs – who at that time became more liberated since the arrival of Christ)and to justify Arabic-dominance, over any other race. Thus, Islam is about propagating conquest and dominance – thus is why, it is brutal religion by the sword i.e physical force, literally and absolutely. Such historical real truths are never made known, especially to non-Arabic Muslims. And further, the problem is, the majority of the modern world and intellectuals, are willing to ignore these historical facts about Islam – thus most “peaceful inter-civilizational” dialogues have been based on lies and propagandas. What the world needs right now is to go through another Enlightenment period of history – to openly debate about the historical facts of Islam and classical European history. Thus is why, marginalized scholars in mainstream media and intercultural meetings like the former ex-Muslim Ibn Warraq, a great scholar on Islam and Andrew Bostom ( see – ) need to be at the forefront of opposing radical Islam. It is not about eradicating Islam but to eradicate the radical elements of it. Bostom, Warraq and other scholars, and truthful theologians, need to be heard to educate both elite and ordinary Muslims on why they should reclaim God and revive justice – since God and justice don’t belong to the Arabs, includng Mohammed. But also such scholars and theologians need to educate the ordinary non-Muslims that romanticized Marxist theories can lead to savagery if manipulated to the extreme as has been proven by Hitler, Mao and Stalin, or why the Christian world had done wrong to the Jews in the past since ancient times. Especially, where such extreme Marxist disciples and still misguided Christians, are unfortunately the biggest supporter or partner of Muslim fanatics within current historical context. History needs to be taught in the right way, to the younger generation – especially in the free and modern Western civilization. And Judeo-Christian heritage that founded modern Western civilization must be revived, celebrated and taught to the younger generation, who are mostly ignorant of such real historical facts.

    Comment by Katharina Sri (ex Noor Aza) — June 22, 2010 @ 12:24 am

  9. The Obama administration can take some credit for the increasingly belligerent tone of Erdogan. Obama is the first American administration to tilt towards the extremists in Palestine. This encourages our enemies. Forget so called constructive engagement with Islamic Jihadists. They must be defeated. We know God will defend Israel and destroy her enemies, but American Christians are not mere bystanders. We are to stand in the gap, and put on the Armor of God. And when necessary, put on the armor of the United States military.

    Comment by William Korach — June 22, 2010 @ 1:33 am

  10. Born an American Jew, raised as such and proud of my heritage an a direct decendant of David and Hullel, I also an a jewish gnostic and eclectic christian, very confortabe in Episcopal Churchs,though i do not take communion.My mongrel faith is probaly like those of Jsus time and the early christians who followed Peter. To me Jesus is a great rabbi. As a jew I seek justice on earch in the lives of men. G-d will judge whether we strive to do thatand rcognise our failings by sin and omission. I am a Zionist. Israel, G-d willing will be the place I return to the place I will remain, never less an American. It ma be hard for other chistians to understmd my position but it is tolerant annd grateful for evangelical support.I will never be baptised; but if the Mormons choose to baptise me by ptoxy, who am I to reject the kind gesture. When I began Hebrew School at age 3 1/2 I was taught to like and respect arabs and that the golden age of Jaudaisn was under the Soanish and morrocan Moors and throuhout the Levant. I have many muslim friend, but my expectations of the muslim world have not been realized. The Koran is not a holy nook, just the connivings of an iliterate warlard who dought power and domination not peace. While there are peaceful offshoots, most of Islam deekd to detroy Christians, Jews, Zoroastrians, Bahai, Bhuddists, Hindus and every nbeliever in Mohammed the great pretenter. Europe is nearly lost to the hordes who undermine every institution. America, Canada, Israel/// so few free places remain… Yes thre Turks have turned against the secularfoundation of the modern Turkish state, Erdogan is leading them there but they are not yet lost. But lost to NATO yes.
    There will be a new and devastating war and Israel can expect no help from Obama/ Israel eill syand alone and withe the help of G-d prevail. No more Hudnas, phonu emporsry truces, fight to take Damascus and alll that nreeds to be done. Israek must not yet beat its swords into plowshares for the profrssies of Isaih and Jesus are not yet upon us. Ignore the UN and the EU. Pray that Russia sees the common threat And keep the holy word close to heart Onlt with thr brotherhood of Christians can our Western Civilization survive.

    Comment by Mark Geoffrey Kirshner, Esq. — June 22, 2010 @ 3:02 am

  11. Am Yisrael Chai. The people of Isreal Live.In broyjrhood with christians for all the time that remains…

    Comment by Mark Geoffrey Kirshner, Esq. — June 22, 2010 @ 3:05 am

  12. Gracious be the God, the father of our Lord Jesus Christ. All we can see as christians is the fullfilment of Bibilical prophesies to prove that our God is a convenant keeping God. Islam is spreading like bush fire and most people in the world and especially christians cannot see a sinister motive. I am a Kenya Christian and currently we are making a new constitution which recognise Kadhi courts which is part of the 4 muslims judicial system, operated thro Sharia law. Our leaders are in support of this though the Church leaders r objecting, the US is in support seemingly thru the Diplomatic pressure. R we not endorsing the strategic Islamic take over considering that the muslim population is multiplying rapidly in my country?This scenario is being repeated in the world arena and though not threatened; it is time to realise that the end is near. Ken

    Comment by Ken Wamutiri — June 22, 2010 @ 4:54 am

  13. For those who want to understand better the mindset of Muslims bellow is an excellent analysis:

    Understanding Muslims’ Mindset – Amil Imani

    Comment by Ben Dor A. — June 22, 2010 @ 5:59 am

  14. Hello, hasn’t anybody watched the history channel? During WWII, Arabic countries were major supporters of the Holocaust, oops, not politically correct. They still stand for the annihilation of Israel. I am not so much concerned for Israel because God promises them protection and I pray for the peace of Jerusalem. What I am concerned for is what will happen to the US if she turns her back on Israel. God has promises for that as well. We are seeing a piece of it going on right now. This is only the beginning if we, as Christians, do not stand up and against Israel’s enemies.

    Comment by Jan Farron — June 22, 2010 @ 5:01 pm

  15. I first and foremost pray for peace in the middle east. However, it is becoming clear that Islamists don’y want peace and in fact would welcome a holy war. A holy war is what drives them and the sooner all non muslims are wiped out the better. It would do well for all Christians to start paying attention to what’s going on with respect to Muslims around the world. This is not being paranoid oh contrair. It is understanding current events and the underlying reasons why Christians must unite together now more than ever. It’s time we stopped worring about whether or not we are politicaly correct and it’s time we started worring about whether our political leaders are standing up for what’s right and just. Can you imagine the United States living under Sharia law? I thought not, but believe it or not that’s exactly where were headed if we don’t start paying attention to current events. Christians must stand together with Israel or we must stand up for justice around the world and a country living under Sharia law is not a country that’s living justly. When a husband can make false claims against his wife for committing adultry, with out any proof what so ever (knowing it’s a lie) she (under Sharia law) can be stoned to death. There are way to many nut jobs who are in power in the middle east now days like Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has publicly has stated that he want’s to see Israel wiped off the face of the earth and given the chance wouldn’t hesitate to do so. So I urge all American’s, Christian and Jew, the time to stand together is now, for we must or else the future could be very different from what we all enjoy now.

    Comment by Phil — June 22, 2010 @ 7:29 pm

  16. While I am alarmed at the rapid spread of Muslim ideology around the world, I have to admit that I find this recent turn of events with Turkey turning its back on Israel and joining the other side, so to speak, as exciting, in that this was one major piece that has been missing for Ezekiel 38 & 39 to come to pass. To live in a time when we can see world events played out as they appear in the Bible is very exciting! I do realize it’s easier to be excited here in the U.S., while Israel is literally under fire and being maligned by almost everyone world-wide, I think we need to remember that Israel and the Jewish people are God’s chosen people and his love for them is unending. He WILL prevail, ‘though I think we can expect some really difficult times in the meantime.

    Comment by Windy — June 22, 2010 @ 8:31 pm

  17. Sink and swim at Cyprus

    Comment by Glenn L — June 23, 2010 @ 8:15 pm

  18. David,
    Turkey-not a friendly country-they murdered over 1,500,00 Armenian Christians in 1915. It was called a Genocide by many countries, but Turkey called it a defense against an aggressive people-a civil war.Both the US & Israel have been too kind & generous to Turkey. The Turks did not allow the US to use their air… bases to re-fuel our military during a war. We pay them millions of $$$ per year for those bases & when we need them – they said NO. Today,the Israelis have denied the Genocide of the Armenian Chritians, by the Turks, in 1915. The US Jewish groups have spoken out against the Armenian Christians, who want justice for this massacre of over 1,500,000 Armenians. Just like the Jews cried out for justice with the Germans. Before Hitler murdered the Jews, he said Who remembered the Armenians ? Then he went & killed 6,000,000 Jews. The Jews should be ashamed of themselves for not recognizing the Armenian Genocide. We have alot of great Jewish friends who understand the sacrifice of the Armenians.

    Comment by Gil Markarian — June 24, 2010 @ 10:33 pm

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