Friday, January 24, 2014

My Qs & As w /State Dept Spox corruption, coup, Gulen Mov

Marie Harf
Deputy Spokesperson
Daily Press Briefing
Washington, DC
January 23, 2014

QUESTION: Turkey. I asked a couple of questions last week. Just to follow up those questions. First, how do you view the current unfolding corruption case in Turkey? It has been five weeks now.
MS. HARF: Well, we’ve been following Turkish domestic developments in the wake of the corruption investigations. As we’ve said repeatedly and I will repeat again today, we are not going to comment on those investigations beyond reiterating our support for the strong desire of Turkey’s citizens to see all investigations conducted in a fair, transparent, and democratic manner. I think as you heard the Secretary say earlier this week, the United States is not and will not become involved in Turkey’s domestic politics. I think we’ll leave it up to them to have those conversations.
QUESTION: Last week I again asked whether the Prime Minister Erdogan has been – and the government has been arguing that there’s a coup attempt and this has nothing to do with the corruption. What’s your take on that?
MS. HARF: Again, we’re following the developments domestically in Turkey and are just not going to get involved in Turkey’s domestic situation or do any analysis of it from here.
QUESTION: The government accuses the Gulen Movement – it is an Islamic movement and they accuse that they are behind these cases. First of all, what do you know about the Gulen Movement? What’s your assessment about that?
MS. HARF: I think, as Jen said, we’re not going to do an assessment on an internal Turkish domestic matter. Obviously, we’re in contact with the Turkish Government on a range of issues, but we’re just not going to do more of an assessment of this group that you’ve asked about, I think, than that.
QUESTION: There is a judicial bill at the parliament currently being discussed. It has been criticized by the EU many, many times. Do you think this bill, if it passes the parliament, would be – would damage the separation of powers in Turkey?
MS. HARF: What bill are you asking about? I’m sorry. What specific bill?
QUESTION: It’s judges and prosecutors. It’s about the judges and prosecutors council. It changes the structure. I’m, again, just follow up this question from last week.
MS. HARF: Yeah. Again, I hate to sound like a broken record, but these are all internal Turkish domestic issues, and it’s just not our position to take a position on them one way or the other.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My Qs and As w StateDept Spox on Syria, ISIS, 55.000 torture photos, US

Telephone - Conference Call Daily Press Briefing Index
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
1:15 p.m. EST
Briefer: Marie Harf, Deputy Spokesperson

How does US Adm feel about overseeing the 2nd Nazi Camps in Syria

QUESTION:  (Inaudible.)  Thank you for your time.  I have two quick questions on Syria.  One is that you already talk about – a little bit – about the recent report came up yesterday on Syria, this 55,000 photos.  One of the three lawyers who written the report, his name is Sir Desmond da Silva – he is also the chief prosecutor of the special court – he likened those images to those of Holocaust survivors and the Nazi death camps after the World War II. 

My question is – this is my first question:  Obviously, the U.S. is a superpower, and how do you feel as the U.S. Government who overseeing these unspeakable massacres over three years during your Administration?

MS. HARF:  Well, if I understand the crux of your question, and please follow up if I don’t, we have been committed to ensuring that Bashar al-Assad, who is the one responsible for these horrific images, cannot go on leading his country.  That is exactly why we are so engaged in the Geneva II process.  It’s complicated.  It’s difficult.  If it were easy, it would have been done months or years ago.  And one of the things that makes this even more challenging and even more imperative is the – it appears there’s no level low enough, right, for Assad, in terms of how he treats his own people. 

So again, these show systematic violations of Syrians’ human rights; terrible, awful conditions in the prisons; but this is exactly why we are committed to doing everything to ending this bloodshed.  Now we – this isn’t for the United States to impose.  This is a process led by the UN that we are a key part of, but certainly not the ones driving the process, to help get a political transition in place here.  And that’s exactly what they’re going to be focused on over the next few days in Montreux and Geneva.

QUESTION:  I understand.  Just to follow up on this question, you are stating that you committed to stop these massacres, but obviously, it has been going on three years.  And I understand that you are saying that the UN is the driver of this process.  But is the U.S. Government – how do you feel that you have basically witnessed this massacre happen and oversee – basically oversaw this --

MS. HARF:  We – I would take issue on “oversaw.”  That’s – look, the people responsible for this are the Assad regime who are perpetrating it.  I’d make a few points.  We supported the opposition in its fight against the regime.  That’s certainly one way we have worked to help bring about an end to this violence.  When we’ve seen horrific uses of chemical weapons by the Syrian regime, we, through our diplomatic efforts, negotiated an agreement to ultimately destroy all of the chemical weapons in Syria, which we’re doing right now, so they can’t be used against their own people. 

But let’s be clear here about the best way to end the bloodshed.  It’s not through a military solution.  It’s not through the U.S. imposing a military solution or putting boots on the ground or anything like that.  It’s through a negotiated political transition.  There have been other ways as well.  Obviously, we can’t stop these horrific acts from happening, but we’ve called on the regime, we’ve called on the Russian Government to press the regime to allow humanitarian access, to help with the suffering of the Syrian people.

It’s not enough, certainly.  That’s why we need a political transition.  But we are trying to make inroads where we can to help the Syrian people.  You saw the Secretary at the Kuwait donors conference just last week announcing more money for humanitarian access, talking to the Russians about possibly pushing the regime to allow humanitarian access.  Those are the kind of things we’re focused on right now.

How does the Spoxperson think US will be remembered when it comes to Syria:

QUESTION:  Before moving my second question, just one last follow-up:  How do you think the U.S. Administration is going to be remembered with its policies regarding Syria in the future, even if it’s not finished yet?

MS. HARF:  Well, it’s certainly not finished yet.  I think that we’re focused right now – I mean, look, for the first time since this conflict began, tomorrow, the Syrian regime and the Syrian opposition will be sitting down at the table together.  That’s not an end in and of itself, but it’s a step that we hope can be taken forward in helping to get a political transition in place here. 

Again, this isn’t a U.S. Government issue to solve, per se.  It is a horrible tragedy that we are doing everything that we think is appropriate and that we can to support the Syrian opposition and the Syrian people, to help end their suffering through humanitarian access, to bring the parties together to negotiate a political solution here, which is the only solution that we see.  There’s not a military solution.  So obviously, it’s complicated and it’s complex and it’s difficult, but we’re very committed to continuing to work to try and resolve the issue because it’s so important, absolutely.

Again: How will the US adm be remembered when it comes to Syria?

QUESTION:  So how do you think your government’s efforts will be remembered when it comes to Syria, let’s say, a couple years later or 10 years later?

MS. HARF:  Well, I think, Ilhan – and then I think we’ll probably move on from this – I’ll leave history up to the historians who decide to write it in a few years.  What we’re focused on right now is the work that our folks are doing on the ground – working with the opposition, working with our international partners to try and bring some end to the bloodshed in Syria.

What does the US adm think about Assad-ISIS reported collusion via gas deals etc.

QUESTION:  Thank you.  My second question is:  Yesterday, and it has been a month, reports are coming out that the Assad regime has not bombed ISIS headquarters, whether in Raqqah or whether in Aleppo, and also, the al-Qaida factions – and again, reports from credible sources are coming out that Assad and the – especially ISIS and some other al-Qaida factions have been partnering on some oil interactions.  And so the question is whether you believe these point of views that Assad intentionally help some of the ISIS and al-Qaida factions to grow in the opposition areas.

MS. HARF:  Well, I could check on specifics.  What we’ve said is that the groups that we consider to be terrorist groups, whether it’s ISIS or al-Nusrah, they have been able to flourish in Syria because of the Assad regime’s actions – that the security situation on the ground, a number of other things, has allowed these terrorists to really flourish, take hold not just in Syria but other places throughout the region.  So obviously, that’s why we are absolutely concerned about the terrorist threat in Syria.  That’s certainly part of what we’re concerned about.

QUESTION:  I understand, but I think the point is here that so far, many people told that it is unintentionally these al-Qaida fighters and groups grow in Syria.  But these reports, especially within the last month coming out, argue that Assad regime intentionally let the al-Qaida and ISIS groups to grow so that it can present itself as fighting with the terrorist organizations.

MS. HARF:  Well, again, I’m happy to check and see if there’s more specifics on this, but I would counter the notion that the Assad regime is responsible for fighting against terrorists; in fact, it’s the atmosphere they’ve created in their own country that’s led to the rise of these terrorists.  So I think that’s probably the extent of our comment on that.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

My Qs & As w/the Spox of the State Dept on #Turkey #Gulen #Coup

Thursday, January 16, 2014


QUESTION:  Turkey?

MS. PSAKI:  Okay.

QUESTION:  I have a couple of questions on Turkey.  One of that is the – it has been a month that this corruption case started.  How do you assess the current situation in Turkey now, in general terms?

MS. PSAKI:  In what capacity?

QUESTION:  Whether the country is stable.

Is Turkey Stable? Spox Psaki doesn't respond the question:

MS. PSAKI:  Well, I mean, I think we’ve stated many times, but I am happy to reiterate it today, we continue to follow the ongoing corruption investigations in Turkey.  In our conversations with all stakeholders in Turkey, we continue to make clear that the United States supports the desire of the people of Turkey for a legal system that meets the highest standards of fairness, timeliness, and transparency, where no one is above the law.  We remain in close touch on the ground.  Turkey is a valued ally, a valued NATO ally, a valued partner.  We work closely with them on a range of issues, including Syria, including preparations for the Geneva conference.  So beyond that, I don’t have any new analysis for you.

Ever talked to the Gulen Movement? Respond is 'no comment' - (note that answer is not a 'no')

QUESTION:  When you say you talk to all stakeholders, is the Gulen movement, which is the – accused by the prime minister and the administration as behind these investigations, do you talk to them as well?

MS. PSAKI:  We’ve seen, of course, a lot of reporting about Turkish domestic politics in the wake of the corruption investigations, and we’re not going to comment on those.

QUESTION:  Yesterday, again, the prime minister said that this coup attempt – not about corruption – actually, he said that this is package as corruption, but it’s actually coup.  Do you agree with that?  Have you been updated on these attempts?

MS. PSAKI:  I haven’t seen those.  I know we’re in close touch.  Obviously, we’re not going to get engaged too closely in comments back and forth on the ground.

Is there a coup against the Turkish Adm? No Respond

QUESTION:  Do you think there is a coup attempt against your ally in Turkey?

MS. PSAKI:  I just don’t have anything further for you on those comments, which I’m happy to take a closer look at.

Al Qaida Raids in Turkey

QUESTION:  Last couple days, Turkish security forces have been raiding some IHH offices, and today, just according to reports, there are about dozens or dozen al-Qaida operatives or suspects arrested.  Have you been updated on these issues?

MS. PSAKI:  I would point you to the Government of Turkey.  I can check and see if there’s anything I can read out for all of you about any updates we’ve received.

QUESTION:  What’s your general understanding of the al-Qaida operatives or al-Qaida presence in Turkey?

MS. PSAKI:  I don’t have any particular announcement or analysis on that for you from the podium.

Do we have any more on Turkey?  I assume probably not?  Oh, go ahead.

QUESTION:  I have one more.

MS. PSAKI:  Okay.

Blow to the Separation of Powers? Spox will check on that

QUESTION:  Today, it has been about – there have been about half a dozen warning came out of the European Union, and today, also Council of European Commissioner on Human Rights said that this new judicial bill at the parliament undermining the public’s confidence in the judiciary.  Do you have any take on that?

MS. PSAKI:  I think I would just point you to the comments I’ve made and the comments and the analysis that we put out every year when we put out our own reports and analysis on those issues.

QUESTION:  This obviously new development just happened last couple days.  So my question is that – do you think this bill being discussed at the parliament is a blow to separation of powers in Turkey?

MS. PSAKI:  I don’t have any analysis on it for you, but I’m happy to check and see if we’d like to add anything.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

John Kerry and Ahmet Davutoglu speaking after their meeting in Paris

Secretary of State John Kerry

And Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu
After Their Meeting

January 12, 2014
Chief of Mission Residence
Paris, France

SECRETARY KERRY:  Thank you very much.  I think Minister Davutoglu is going to lead off with a statement, then I’ll respond.  And thank you all for being here.

FOREIGN MINISTER DAVUTOGLU:  Thank you very much, John, for hosting us here in American Embassy in Paris.  Of course, we are going through a historic time.  Critical processes are continuing.   And Turkish-American cooperation is strategically important.  It has been important throughout the decades, centuries, but now Turkish-American cooperation, strategic consultation, is very important on different issues. 

Today, I had the honor to meet again with my dear colleague, Secretary Kerry.  And we went through future agenda, very comprehensive issues, of course starting with Syria.  Turkey and the United States working together for last three years to help Syrian people on humanitarian ground, as well as for the realization of the Syrian people’s aspirations.

Today, we had the Friends of Syria group meeting.  And in coming Geneva II talks, Turkey and United States, we will be working together to make this a successful process and meeting, and we decided today how to work together next – one week until – 10 days, almost, until Geneva II meeting.

Also on – in the region, there are other important transformations.  I am grateful to John because of his briefing about his visits to Israel and Palestine and regarding Middle Eastern peace process.  As Turkey, we support this process and we support your efforts, John.  And whatever Turkey can do for any peaceful initiative in the region, we are always ready to work.

Also, we support P5+1 Iran talks and the engagement with Iran and to solve the nuclear issue, which is – which will bring a new situation on the ground. 

Also, I think today we shared our common approach regarding the situation in Iraq.  We support Iraqi democratic process for elections and fight against terrorist groups as well as sectarianism.   And inclusive process in Iraq is a must, and we will definitely support all inclusive processes.

We also shared our views on Cyprus, which is in a critical state regarding for a peaceful settlement on the island.  And we are grateful for American support recently to mobilize the negotiations, and we will continue to work together. 

Of course, for Turkey, United States is a strategic ally, and we will continue to work together.  Our bilateral relation is going very well, and these consultations are important for us, for Turkey, for United States, for the region, and for the international peace, regional and international peace. 

Again, thank you very much for this opportunity, John.

SECRETARY KERRY:  Well, thank you very much, Ahmet.  I don’t know if you want to say anything about our conversation briefly on the subject of Turkey-U.S. and the internal politics.  Or do you want me to do that? 

FOREIGN MINISTER DAVUTOGLU:  Yeah, you do that.  If needed, I can explain. 

SECRETARY KERRY:  Of course.  Well, let me, first of all, thank Foreign Minister Davutoglu, my friend, Ahmet.  He and I have worked as closely together on a number of issues as any other foreign minister, and I’m very grateful to him for the many initiatives on which we have been joined together.  He’s mentioned many of them just now.

We talked several times even this week about our common approach to the issue of Syria and Geneva II.  And Ahmet has reached out on his own in very creative and energetic diplomacy to work with the opposition and to help us all to be united as we move towards this important meeting.

In addition to that, he’s been an important interlocutor with respect to Iraq, our common interest in stabilizing Iraq, trying to reduce the violence, find a way towards better governance that can reduce the tensions between groups in Iraq, and also deal with the issue of oil and revenues and distributions. 

We also have a strong supporter for the P5+1 process on Iran, and we appreciate Turkey’s influence there. 

We also talked about a relationship with Israel and the future relationship hopefully with Turkey, to try to continue down the road to get that on track. 

We did also talk about the importance of both of our commitments to rule of law and to democracy and to the process of both of our countries respecting each other’s political process.  And I think the minister understood and made it clear that the United States of America has absolutely no interest in being caught up in or engaged in or involved in the internal politics, the election process of Turkey.  And we are not.  And I think the foreign minister understands that.

And so what is important is that we continue to value publicly and to make sure the people of both of our countries understand our commitment to the strength of the relationship between Turkey and the United States, two important allies, two friends who’ve worked very hard to solve problems, not create them. 

And I’m grateful to the foreign minister for his categorical statement about U.S.-Turkey relationship with respect to issues of rule of law and democracy, our commitment to it, and our respect for the fact that the United States is not engaged in that kind of activity, and we need to calm the waters and move forward to focus on the things that both of us want to make a difference on.  I think – is that a fair --

FOREIGN MINISTER DAVUTOGLU:  Yes.  That’s right.  You are right, and I fully agree.  As I always say, Turkey and United States, Turkish-U.S. relations, one of the most structured and well structured relations in international relations.  And this has been the case for the – throughout the difficult years of Cold War and throughout the post Cold War years, when we worked together in Balkans, in Afghanistan, everywhere in the world.  And this relation is based on mutual respect and a very close consultation in all fields. 

And Turkish democracy is a very mature democracy.  And in that sense, Turkish-American relation, with special reference to democratic values everywhere, not only in our countries but everywhere in the region and in Europe and everywhere, is the most important value.  We will continue our cooperations, political cooperation, based on these common values and for the future of world where there will be peace and stability. 

Thank you. 

SECRETARY KERRY:  Thank you, Ahmet.  Thank you very much.


SECRETARY KERRY:  And we’ll be meeting – we’ll be seeing each other in a few days. 

FOREIGN MINISTER DAVUTOGLU:  Yes, in a few days, and several telephone calls. 

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Turkey Questions - State Dpt, January 9th - #Corruption

US: No one above the law
Q: No, I've got one on Turkey, though.
Q: Could we go to the situation in Turkey where there's been a building political crisis? Erdogan sacked -- Prime Minister Erdogan sacked about 700 police officers, yesterday there were moves to try and curb some of the powers of the country's leading independent judicial body, and today there's more moves to impose strict controls on the Internet. I wondered if you could give us a broad kind of overview of the U.S. position on this.
MS. PSAKI: Well, you're right, and as you pointed to, it's been ongoing and there have been different developments each day. In our conversations with all stakeholders in Turkey, we continue to make clear that the United States supports the desire of the Turkish people for a legal system that meets the highest standards of fairness, timeliness and transparency in civil and criminal matters where no one is above the law and where allegations against public figures are investigated impartially.
You are familiar with our view on freedom of speech and freedom of media, which we've expressed as needed and expressed annually in our report as well, and we're certainly communicating that directly to the government.
Q: At what level? From whom in this building?
MS. PSAKI: I don't have any readouts or updates on calls from Washington, but certainly, it's being communicated on the ground.

US: Turkey remains a key ally
Q: So are there concerns that this could lead to instability, and what is a key U.S. ally in that region?
MS. PSAKI: You're right that Turkey is and remains a key U.S ally, and we're not going to get ahead of where we are now. We've expressed our concerns about some of the events that are happening on the ground directly, publicly and privately, and we'll continue to do that.
Q: But I mean, this -- there has been since the summer, really, all of this political unrest and a lot of violence related to how Prime Minister Erdogan has been treating the opposition. Do you -- do you think that this makes Turkey a less reliable ally if there's so much chaos in the country and they are diverted dealing with this domestic instability?
MS. PSAKI: Well, Elise (sp), certainly -- I would not qualify it that way from the United States government. We express concerns when we have them, as I just did in this case. We've had them in the past, and when we've had them in the past, we've expressed them, but Turkey remains an important ally. It remains a country we work closely with on a range of issues, and when we have concerns, we'll make those known.
Q: I didn't say it wasn't an important ally. I'm asking about the reliability in terms of, you know, the stability of the government, the security of the government, whether, you know, they are too preoccupied with their own domestic chaos to be a reliable and productive partner with you in other arenas.

US: We won't make prediction about Turkey's reliability 
MS. PSAKI: Well, I don't think we want to make a prediction of that. As you know, Turkey is -- will be participating in a range of discussions about Syria and the crisis in Syria. They're obviously an important partner on that. We work with them on other issues. So --
Q: So you have seen over the last, what, six months that this political instability and chaos and, you know, periodic violence in Turkey has not affected your business with them?
MS. PSAKI: We've continued to work closely with Turkey. And obviously, we've expressed concerns about issues going on domestically as we see fit.
Q: Yes, on Turkey, do you consider Mr. Erdogan a leader who respects democracy? Since he dismissed judges and prosecutors, since he put more than 1,000 journalists in jail, is he a leader that respects democracy, you think?
MS. PSAKI: Well, I will say that when we have concerns about his actions, we express those. And that's something I have just done today.
Do we have any more on Turkey?

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Erdoğan’ın Elçisi ve Gülen’in Mektubu

Erdoğan’ın Elçisi ve Gülen’in Mektubu
  • Zamanlama: Gazeteci Fehmi Koru, Fethullah Gülen’i 21 Aralık günü ziyaret etmiş. Yani Gülen’in oldukça ses getiren ‘karşılıklı belalaşma’ sohbetinden sadece bir gün sonra, ve Başbakan Erdoğan’ın yine hafızalardan silinmemek üzere kazınan ‘inlerini didik didik edeceğiz’ konuşmalarını yaptığı gün olan Cumartesi günü, Erdogan'in aynı zamanda Pennsylvania’ya elçi gönderdiği gün imiş. (Erdoğan’ın PKK ile müzakereler sürecindeki sert dili akla gelen.)
  • Gülen vs. Erdoğan: Elçi, Cumhurbaşkanı Gül tarafından gönderilmiş ama gazeteci Nazlı Ilıcak’ın bildirdiği gibi, Başbakan Erdoğan’ın da olanlardan haberi var. Yani asıl aktörler burada Erdoğan ve Gülen. Gül neredeyse sadece arabulucu denebilir.
  • Tepkiler: Erdoğan’ın, 5 Ocak Cuma günü gazeteci ve yazarlarla yaptığı toplantıda bir elçi gönderdiğini söylemeden, Gülen’in ‘pazarlık’ amacıyla ‘ıslak imzalı mektup’ gönderdiği şeklinde durumu yansıtması, Pennsylvania tarafından iyi karşılanmadığı hemen belli oldu. Erdoğan’ı olabilecek en kısa zamanda yalanlamak üzere mektubun Erdoğan’a değil Gül’e gönderildiğinin söylenmesi, ve gönderilen elçinin (F.Koru) talebi sonrası böyle bir mektubun yazıldığının hatırlatılması, bizzat yazım aşamasında rol oynamış Osman Şimşek tarafından açıklandı. Şimşek’in ‘la havle’ çekerek mektubu yazdığını belirtmesi, Erdoğan’ın durumu anlatış şekline yapılan bir tepki olarak algılandı.
  • Hız: Erdoğan’ın kendisine Gülen tarafından bir mektubun geldiğini ifade etmesi sonrasındaki yaklaşık iki saat içinde önce Gazeteciler ve Yazarlar Vakfı (GYV) sonra da Gülen’in en yakınındaki Osman Şimşek tarafından yapılan hızlı açıklama ve etkili şekilde sosyal medya ve gazetelere ulaşılması, Camianın artık bu hallerde çok hızlı hareket edebilme refleksine sahip olduğunu gösteriyor. Bu kısa zaman, hükümetin hızına denk denebilir.
  • Güvensizlik: Elçi ve mektubun sulh amaçlı hamleler olmasına rağmen, günün sonunda aradaki güvensizliği daha da artırmış olması, tarafların birbirinden ne kadar uzaklaştığını ve barışın ne denli zorlu olduğunu yeniden gösterdi.
  • Pazarlık? Mektubun içeriğinde, Gülen Hocanın kabaca üç talebi olduğu göze çarpıyor: 1) Dersanelerin kapatılmaması 2) kamu sektöründe görevden alınmaların durdurulması 3) basın üzerinden yapılan kavganın son bulması. Kendisine gönderilen elçiye, Camianın talepleri, aradaki sürtüşmenin başlangıcı olarak görülen dersanelerden başlayarak, 17 Aralık sonrası meydana gelen görevden alınmaların durdurulmasınin talep edilmesi, Camianın pozisyonunu tamamen koruduğunu gösteriyor. Görüldüğü kadarıyla en başta nerede idiyseler, oradalar.
  • Camia Karşılığı? İki taraf arasındaki bu iletişimden sonra, farz-ı muhal, Erdoğan’ın Gülen’den gelen bu talepleri yerine getirdiğini düşünelim. Bu durum halinde Camianın nasıl karşılık vereceği bilinmiyor. Örneğin, dersanenin kapanmasından vazgeçilir, kamu personellerinin yerinden edilmeleri durdurulur ve (hatta olmaz ya) AKP yanlısı gazete ve medyalarda dahi barış ilan edilirse, mesela yolsuzluk dosyalarına ne olacak? Duracak mı? Bunun pek mümkün olamayacağı düşünülürse, bu bağlamda, Erdoğan’ın bir barış yapması için pek bir nedeninin kalmadığı görülüyor.
  • Kullanma tarihi: AKP tarafının bir elçiyi Gülen’i ziyarete göndermiş olması, barış ortamını yoklamayı öncelikle AKP’nin istediğini gösteriyor. Ama 21 Aralık’da yapılmış bir görüşmenin üzerinden 2. dalga gözaltıları ve sonrasında yaklaşık bin kadar emniyet görevlisi ve diğer kamu görevlilelerinin yerinin değiştiğini hatırlamamız gerekir. Yani aslında mektubun kullanma tarihinin de geçtiği söylenebilir.
  • Erdoğan mecbur mu kaldı? Mehmet Baransu’nun ağır twitler eşliğinde AKP’nin gönderdiği elçiden birkaç gün önce bahsetmiş olması ve AKP’li elçinin ABD'den Türkiye'ye eli boş döndüğünü iddia etmesinden sonra AKP tarafı bu elçi durumunu açıklamak zorunda kaldı. Bunu açıklarken de Erdoğan, Gülen’in arayı düzeltmek için pazarlık yapmaya çalıştığı şeklinde bir durum tasvir etti, böyle bir algı oluşturma yoluna gitti . Bu istenen algı, birkaç saat için de olsa, ta ki GYV’den açıklama gelene kadar, başarılı oldu. Bu kötü tecrübeden sonra ise bu tür arabulucuk ve sulh mektupları için ortamın daha da zehirli bir hale geldiğini, tarafların yoğurdu üfleyerek yiyeceğini düşünebiliriz.
  • Gülen’in mesajı: Gülen, mektupla birlikte, 2 tane de imzalı kitabı, iyi niyetinin nişanesi olarak Erdoğan’a gönderdiğini Osman Şimşek Herkü'da yazdı. Bu hareket, aktif ve ileri gelen bir Camia üyesine göre, Gülen’den Erdoğan’a, ancak ikisinin anlayabileceği bir mesajı da taşıyordu. Bunun ne anlama geldiğini, Washington’da Hizmetin önemli bir önemli figürü bana tahmini olarak ifade etti. Görüldüğü kadarıyla Erdoğan, Gülen’in gönderdiği mesajı yeterli bulmadı.
  • Son Soru: yolsuzluk suçlamaları, bakanların rüşvet alma suçlamaları, onca fotolar, ayakkabı kutuları, 700 bin liralık saatler, Reza Zarrab’ın maceraları, özel jetli umreler.. Bunlar nasıl unutulacak? İstiklal Savaşı ilanıyla mı?

Friday, January 03, 2014

My Qs & As w/US State Dept. Spox on Turkey

Friday, January 3, 2014

QUESTION:  Turkey?

MS. HARF:  Mm-hmm. 

Corruption as "internal matter"

QUESTION:  Yesterday, Washington Post editorial was addressing the U.S. Government and saying that the Obama Administration should be pressing Mr. Erdogan to respect the rule of law and give police and prosecutors the opportunity to present their cases in court.  Do you agree with that, or what’s your reaction?

MS. HARF:  Well, we’ve continued obviously to follow the investigations going on in Turkey.  We’ve certainly over months and years made concerns known to the Turkish Government about freedom of the press, about some of the – freedom of – some of these issues that I think were mentioned there.  I don’t have any, I think, any further analysis on that other than to say we have a close relationship with Turkey.  We’ll keep raising these issues as we think it’s appropriate.  And again, this is an internal matter in Turkey, and we’ll follow it, but this is something for them to deal with.

QUESTION:  So you have been repeating some of the norms – universal norms here, transparency and judiciary and all that.

MS. HARF:  Mm-hmm.  And due process --

QUESTION:  Due process.

MS. HARF:  -- effective access to justice, all of that.  Absolutely. 

QUESTION:  So over three or four weeks that the hundreds of police officers and prosecutors also – the one that launched the case – removed from the case.  Do you think that the Administration’s handling the cases over the months is --

MS. HARF:  Well, I don’t have any comment on the specifics of the cases.  Obviously, we would reiterate again that we expect Turkey to follow and meet the highest standards for transparency, for timeliness and fairness in its judicial system.  But I don’t have any specific comments, again, on these cases.

Corruption is a plot hatched by the US?
QUESTION:  So last week the Prime Minister Erdogan basically said that this corruption case is a plot, is planned in the U.S. in April.  Did you guys hatch such a plot to overthrow the Turkish Government?

MS. HARF:  Absolutely not.  We find this attack baseless.  We’ve made it known to Turkish authorities our concerns about these kind of allegations regarding American officials just completely baseless.  Again, this is an internal Turkish matter.  We’ll keep following it, but don’t have much more on it than that.

The Gulen Movement behind?
QUESTION:  The Administration argues that there is planned movement.  It is an Islamist – the Islamic movement is behind these cases that tried to overthrow the government.  Do you know anything about this?  Do you have any comment on this?

MS. HARF:  I mean, I’ve seen some of those reports.  I don’t have a comment on it.  I’m happy to check with our folks to see if there’s more that we can share.

Current Turkey-US Relations
QUESTION:  Would you be able to define the current U.S.-Turkey relationship under the circumstances?

MS. HARF:  Well, I think broadly speaking, they are a very important NATO ally, as we know.  We work together on a host of issues very closely, including on regional issues like Syria and other issues as well.  I think as I said about a number of countries, the sign of a close partnership is the ability to speak frankly when you have disagreements, which we do.  And we’re focused on working together on all these issues going forward.  I don’t think I have much more analysis on the bilateral relationship than that.

QUESTION:  Any development on the U.S. ambassador so far?  Is he staying or is he --

MS. HARF:  I don’t have anything new to announce on that.  I’m happy to check, but I don’t have any update on that.

QUESTION:  And lastly, yesterday there were some trucks in Turkey confiscated and then let go.  Do you have anything – do you know anything about the trucks?

MS. HARF:  I haven’t seen those reports.  I’m not sure if they’re the same thing you’re asking about, but I’m happy to look into them.