Will the Christian west retake Istanbul?
I admit, the idea that Christians will retake Istanbul off the rails.
But, of all the world’s hot spots, the one least talked about and the most serious is Recep Erdogan’s Turkey.
Economically, Turkey is Istanbul surrounded by abject poverty. The city is divided down the middle by the Bosporus and spanned by three bridges, the most spectacular being the mile-long Martyr’s bridge.
(It seems that in Islam, everything is about dying for religion.)
The Bosporus divides the Islamic east from the Christian west. Most of Turkey’s landmass is in the east but 1/3 of its gross domestic product and most of its wealth is in Istanbul. It’s capital, Ankara, is in the east.
Ankara’s gross domestic product is $105 billion, breathtakingly low for the capital of a major nation. Istanbul’s GDP is 2 ½ times higher.
The legacy of elections in Islamic nations isn’t impressive. The Palestinians first shot at an election, under the collective idiocy of George Bush and Condoleezza Rice was to elect Yasser Arafat. Arafat skimmed billions in aid all the while destroying the economies of the West Bank and Gaza. Since then, they’ve elected a line of Hamas lunatics who have carried on Arafat’s legacy of theft.
Both Iraq and Iran have elected Islamic lunatics who’ve used religion to shut down universities, destroy Christian religious sites and create prison states. The situation is even worse in Pakistan. When Mohammad Zia Al Haq took over Pakistan in a military coup, he held a referendum for Islamification. This meant civil law would be replaced by the Koran. He took this as a mandate for his rule, turning the nation into a prison. Their last military leader was just sentenced to death.
Erdogan is in the process of doing the same in Turkey.
Erdogan is incredibly antisemitic, even compared to the UK’s nut job Jeremy Corbyn. Were that not enough, he’s so paranoid he makes Richard Nixon appear normal. He fired over 21,000 teachers and most of the countries university administrators because he felt they were trying to overthrow his government.
The fact is Islamic nations are not competitive. Wealth everywhere, even in communist countries is in the hands of western Christians. Although there are 1.3 billion Muslims, there isn’t a single Islamic university in the top 250 in the world. There are just a couple Islamic Nobel Prize winners. (Aside from the peace prize.) One cannot stifle innovation and innovate.
It’s clear that the EU is going to have to eliminate Turkey from consideration in the Eurozone.
Between 2000 and 2013, Turkey’s economy grew by 350%, one of the most explosive in the world. But since then, their currency has lost 65% of it’s value against the dollar and GDP has fallen 25%. But it was its link to the west, specifically Europe that caused their growth. A disconnect will destroy their economy.
Erdogan’s decision to stage troops in Libya is another example of his megalomania for the simple reason they can’t afford it.
Turkey has been for a decade running massive budget deficits. This borrowing has been almost exclusively in Euro’s, which will have to be paid back in Euro’s, something that will be next to impossible with a collapsing Turkish Lira.
Were that not enough, Turkey is running a massive trade deficit, exporting manufactured items like auto’s but importing raw materials and consumer goods. They import $10 billion per year in oil, mostly from Russia, Iran and Iraq.
This puts Turkey in an impossible situation. They buy from the east, sell to the west and finance through European banks. Erdogan’s move to put his Army in Libya and Kurdistan will certainly cause the Eurozone and the USA to sanction them.
This will (and has already) caused severe economic hardship.
The political situation in the middle east and northern Africa has not been this severe since perhaps the end of the Roman Empire.
Libya is a shamble, its economy destroyed and large swaths of the country under the rule of semi literate tribes. Syria is a basket case, leveled by war and genocide. Egypt is being held together by loans, the Sinai a lawless wasteland.
Erdogan sees himself as the resurrection of the Ottoman empire in Turkey. Surrounded by yes men, the collapse of his country seems to elude him.
It’s hard to imagine how they emerge from this, but one thing is certain. The area on the Asian side of the Bosporus has tens, perhaps hundreds of millions of people that are in a state of severe poverty. The Syrian war has caused the largest refugee crisis since world war 2.
Erdogan has threatened to ship 3 million refugees to Europe. Almost all of these are in Jordan and along Turkey’s border with Syria. To get them to Europe, they must cross the Bosporus’s three bridges.
Will NATO be forced to take out these bridges?
Will the EU be forced to cut Turkey in half?
As outlandish as this seems, the other alternative, that Turkey reform its economy, reverse its trade and budget deficits and restore confidence in the Lira seems more outlandish.
In politics, there are two paths. The hard path and the path politicians always take.
Trying to predict what a nation’s politicians will do is easy. They’ll do what keeps then in power.
Right now, the US going through the overthrow of it’s President by the CIA and FBI. American conservatives are chomping at the bit to “drain the swamp.”
In the end, the bureaucracy will protect itself. Anyone who thinks their government will protect their sorry ass should be institutionalized.
This is true all over the world. Erdogan will do what he must do to stay in power. He will cause the outright destruction of his own country. This is what the British Royals did after WW1, it’s Pakistan did under Zia, it’s what India did under Gandhi, what Venezuela did under Chavez; I could list the countries that did this until my fingers cramped up.
The US founding father’s created divided government because they knew, in the end, governments will do exactly what Recep Erdogan and Adolf Hitler did. Destroy their own house in an ego induced Wagnerian fantasy.
How this ends at this point may be loonier that anyone can imagine.