“I dare you, Turkey!” Possible Russian moves in a showdown with Ankara


November 25, 2015 –

crimson alter, PolitRussia – 

Translated for Fort Russ by J. Arnoldski

“Moscow is pushing Ankara’s sore spots”

The Turko-American provocation has left the entire world anxious to see into the future. There is cause for alarm. One can take a risk and predict that their will be no war, but that there will be a fight for peace which will leave little of the earth left.

Before proceeding to analyze the possible orientation of Russia’s responsive actions, it is necessary to first of all understand what our opponents are trying to achieve. To this end, it is impossible to stop at the chain of logic in Ankara. We must remember that in geopolitics there are practically no rabid orphan dogs and in the Turkish case especially the links leading to Washington can be noticed by the naked eye. 

After the beginning of the Russian operation in Syria, the deranged patriotic part of the American elite, which prefers to plunge the world into a nuclear war in order to maintain global hegemony, demanded that Obama organize a no fly zone over at least part of Syria. This was demanded by McCain, Hillary Clinton and, most importantly, it was demanded by the main “brain” of influential American radicals, Robert Kagan (the husband of Victoria Nuland).

The most unintelligent of the representatives of the deranged part of the American elite, the senator from South Carolina, Lindsey Graham, publicly stated that “without exaggerating,” he would shoot down Russian planes in Syria if they threaten the forces that Washington supports.

Moreover, literally just a few days ago Kagan demanded that the US create not only a no-fly zone over the Syrian-Turkish border, but also a “sanctuary” (safe-zone) for the “moderate opposition” while strengthening its American military contingent to 30-50,000 people.

The programmatic article of Kagan published in the Wall Street Journal on Saturday caused a sharp negative reaction among the sane parts of the American political and military elite. Speaking frankly, no one wanted to die for the sake of “Kagan and his friends.” It is very likely that “Kagan and his friends”, having lost the opportunity to use the Pentagon as their own personal private military company, decided to switch to the traditional plan B – and this was using their Turkish puppets in the same style and format that they use their Kiev political puppets like Yatsenyuk and Dzhemilev. The opinions and desires of Erdogan himself in this scheme generally don’t matter, although it is likely that he liked the idea of strengthening his position due to the consolidation of society against an external enemy. As for the radicals in the party of Erdogan, this idea was obviously accepted with a cheer. 

If the situation is seen from the point of view of Kagan and his allies, then the Turks were compelled to do what the US military didn’t want to. If we call things by their names, then Turkey was sacrificed. Thanksgiving Day is soon and this is perhaps the most vile and filthy of all holidays known to humanity, a holiday of betrayal as a life style and strategy for success. Each year the kindness of those who the future Americans waged a genocide against is remembered and rejoiced. This can only be a holiday for someone for whom Judas is a hero. A traditional treat on this “holiday of backstabbing” is a roasted Turkey. If this is not a coincidence, then it is impossible not to recognize that our opponents present a rather peculiar sense of humor. 

As a response to the downed plane, the authors of “Kagan’s plan” would be suited by any of two possible scenarios:

1. A full-fledged war between Russia and NATO. Taking into account the emergent attempts by Europe to get out from underneath American “security,” this could be the last real chance to use article 5 of the NATO Charter in order to fight Russia with a united front. If this is not done now, then sooner or later attempts by Juncker to establish a European (i.e., independent from the US) army, as well as attempts by the French elite to become closer with Russia to solve the problem of ISIS could lead to the decomposition of NATO from the inside out.

2. The cessation of Russian operations and bombardments in the area of the Syrian-Turkish border with the subsequent creation of “sanctuary for moderate terrorists” about which Kagan himself wrote in his programmatic document. After the appearance of such a “safe zone” the Americans would have no trouble pushing their solution for the Syrian question: breaking Assad, supporting ISIS, and sending it to the Caucasus, Russia, and Iran.

It is already obvious that Kagan didn’t win one of these variants. In the statement of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation it is clear that:

  • the operation in Syria will be continued and intensified
  • any planes which threaten Russian planes will be shot down

It is necessary to make an important clarification which allows one to understand the emotions of the Turkish “war party” which happily played along with Kagan’s plan. From the point of view of the “Turkish imperialists” who constitute a substantial part of the political and military elite, the “Turkoman” brigades in Syria are the same as the LPR and DPR are for Russia. When Russian bombardments liquidate dozens and hundreds of “pro-Turkish militants” in one flight, then a part of the Turkish elite perceives this as a personal pain, personal tragedy, and personal reason for revenge. Moreover, one doesn’t need to be Baba Vanga to guess that a substantial part of the workforce of ISIS oil business, from truck drivers to engineers, have Turkish passports. From the point of view of a significant part of the Turkish elite, Russia stepped on a very sore spot and it’s not only about money and barrels, but also the fact that the Russian army has systematically killed those whom the Turks consider their own and to whom the Turkish elite promised support and protection. When McCain and Kagan appeared on the horizon with their ideas of a “buffer zone” and promises of protection, it is understandable that the Turks seized this idea with both hands. However, the Kremlin has drawn a completely logical conclusion: if it is so painful for the “Turkish imperialists” to watch the death of Pro-Turkish fighters and Turkish fuel, then the process should be continued and not wrapped up. Instead of backing off from Russia to lick its wounds, Ankara has ensured that the Russian army will dance a bloody jig on these blisters on a daily basis until every militant who dreams of new Ottoman Empire will be liquidated. Simultaneously, Russian air defenses will keep their sights on Turkish (and other) planes with an aim at leveling the score of aerial losses. 

The above-mentioned is only one, albeit the main trajectory of Russia’s responsive actions.

Turkey has one serious trump card in its relations with Russia. Ankara can close the strait through which Russian troops in Syria are supplied and Russian oil is exported. Russia also has a serious trump card which will be applied in the case of an escalation of the conflict: Turkish energy is dependent on Russian gas. Franky speaking, as a result of “closing the strait,” the Turks will have to turn off their lights and this is in addition to the obvious prospect for a military solution to the problem of a blockade. This set of mutual threats indicates that a mutual use of mutual threats will most likely not happen.

There are two additional responsive actions: supporting the Kurds and impacting the economic interests of Turkey.

It shouldn’t be believed that “all the Kurds are under the wing of the US.” This is a simplification which does not really correspond to reality. First of all, there are many Kurds, and not all Kurdish organizations have a positive attitude towards the United States. Secondly, even the formally pro-American Kurdish forces are not cooperating with the US eagerly and they will come to realize that Washington simultaneously supports Ankara. In these circumstances, Moscow can offer interesting options for collaboration to the Kurds, because we now have no restrictions in terms of risking offending Turkey. 

As far as Turkish economic interests, Dmitry Medvedev made it quite clear: “Long-standing good relations between Russia and Turkey have been undermined, including the economic and humanitarian spheres. This damage will be difficult to heal and its direct consequence might be the rejection of a number of joint projects with Turkish companies and the loss of their positions on the Russian market.”

By coincidence, the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance already discovered this morning some violations by a Turkish supplier of meat to Russia.

It can be safely predicated that Russian regulatory authorities will suddenly become unnaturally yet commendably vigilant in matters of inspecting Turkish companies according to various norms of Russian legislation. Turkish non-profit organizations and Azerbaijani-Turkish businesses, which feel themselves to be doing quite well in some sectors of the Russian economy, will also start to have bad luck. Sure, Turkey could possibly respond symmetrically and create problems for Sberbank, Inter RAO and Lukoil subsidiaries, but in terms of money Turkish business will lose much more than Russian business. 

In fact, every Russian consumer can participate in these retaliations. One can and should refuse vacationing in Turkey, but this is not enough. For example, one can and should refuse to purchase household appliances from BEKO (a brand of the Turkish corporation Ko Holding Durable Goods Group). Consuming beer is bad, and that includes consuming beer from Efes, the Turkish corporation Anadolu Efes Biraclk ve Malt Sanayii A. This is not only bad, but is also sponsoring Turkish accomplices to terrorists. If you have a deposit or account at Credit Europe Bank which belongs to the Turkish oligarch Husnu Ozyegin, then closing it would be a nice patriotic gesture. One would also hope that wearing the Turkish brand Colin’s will soon be bad taste. 

The last but perhaps the most important work orientation on the Turkish front will bear a diplomatic and informational character. In the mid-range perspective, the Kremlin will ensure that Turkey is perceived on the international arena as a country which sponsors international terrorism. The evidence is there, and now they will methodically use it in the framework of the work of all international structures from the UN to the FATF. It will be very difficult for the Turks to defend themselves against accusations and they cannot simply ignore them. It will be especially difficult for European politicians to ignore this after the terrorist attacks in Paris. A successful developing of this line of attack on Turkey will make it all the more harder for American radicals to keep Transatlantic solidarity together while defending Turkey from the hostile actions of Russia in other spheres. Moreover, the exposure of the participation of Turkish officials and their close relatives in financing ISIS could, on the one hand, provoke a subsequent political crisis in Turkey and, on the other hand, open up great opportunities for the prosecution of some of the odious representatives of the political elite. For us, it would be desirable for various troubles which will happen with the Turkish elites to be written off not as “Russian revenge” but as being clearly justified by generally recognized need to combat international terrorism. 

By the way, the very fact of the existence of contemporary Turkey is a result of the idealism of the Soviet leadership. The history of Russia, in the cases of Bulgaria, Turkey, and even Ukraine, teaches us that mercy and idealism, regardless of motivation, are dangerous luxuries in geopolitics. In the future, however, it is worth seeing with some optimism that we have all the chances to correct some historical mistakes. 

The Turkish problem will be solved, but it is only a symptom, as the fundamental reason for such problems is Washington, and not even the White House, but the inconspicuous office at 1775 Massachusetts Avenue. The problem is the insane segment of the American political elite. Their neutralization is a topic for a separate conversation. If we will kill off the Turkish imperialists relatively soon, then everything will be much more difficult with the American ones. We are now participating in the First World Hybrid War. Victory will be expensive and far off, but it will be ours. 

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