Turkey’s Expansionist Policy Exposed – Col. (ret.) Dr. Jacques Neriah (JCPA via Daily Alert)
- Turkey’s Expansionist Policy Exposed – Col. (ret.) Dr. Jacques Neriah
Turkish Intelligence has been assisting militant groups belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood and other radical organizations in Syria, Egypt, and Lebanon. Activities exposed by journalists are only the tip of the iceberg. Egyptian secret services caught Turkish intelligence officers red-handed assisting Islamic State extremists in the Sinai Peninsula. Greek authorities intercepted a ship loaded with a Turkish shipment of weapons supposedly destined for Muslim radicals in northern Lebanon. Turkish courts heard testimony that Turkish ammunition and mortar shells from Turkish intelligence depots were transported in trucks accompanied by state officials to parts of Syria under Islamist rebel control.
In December 2018, Libyan customs caught separate shipments of weapons at the ports of Misurata and Al-Khoms originating in Turkey. Libyan National Army chief Khalifa Haftar called on the UN Security Council to condemn Turkey. Turkey has also played an important role in harboring Libyan Islamists and militants within its own borders.
There is a pattern in this Turkish behavior. This is a Turkey headed by the militant President Erdogan who is trying to revive the Ottoman heritage. Expressions of his expansionist policy may be seen in a defense agreement with Qatar allowing Turkey to deploy more than 4,000 troops in the Gulf princedom, the recent acquisition of Suakin Island off the coast of Sudan (which used to be the headquarters of the Ottoman fleet in the Red Sea), a Turkish military presence in Somalia and parts of northern Iraq, assistance to Hamas in Gaza, and political activities in Jerusalem.
The writer is a special analyst for the Middle East at the Jerusalem Center. (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)