Syrian Journalist: The West, Led by the US, Knows Erdogan Has Been Supporting ISIS for Years, Yet Chooses to Ignore this

In an article titled “Erdogan’s Terror, Which the West Ignores” in the London-based daily Al-Arab, ‘Ali Qassem, a Syrian journalist residing in Tunisia, castigated the West for its stance towards Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He argued that the West, led by the U.S., knows that Erdogan has been directly and personally supporting ISIS and other terror organizations for years, yet chooses to ignore this fact and the extensive evidence that proves it. He also called out Erdogan for his hypocrisy, noting that he condemns the “terror” and “terrorists,” meaning the Kurds who fight ISIS, while he himself has been sheltering ISIS, enabling its activity and providing it with resources and financial support since 2012. When it comes to spreading lies, said Qassem, Erdogan is “a faithful disciple of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels” because he just “keeps lying, in hope that people will believe him even though the lie is obvious.”

The following are translated excerpts from his article:[1]

“When Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks about terror, what terror is he referring to? The terrorists he speaks about, are they the terrorists of ISIS and Al-Qaeda, or does he consider ISIS and Al-Qaeda to be saints? Erdogan says that whoever arms the terrorists… is party to [their] crimes and bears [responsibility] for the sin of shedding Muslim blood. That is what he stressed in his meeting with representatives of the Turkish diaspora and with [other] Muslims in New York, when he came there to attend the UN General Assembly. [But] the terrorists he hinted at, are they [actually] the people who are fighting ISIS, Al-Qaeda and the other jihadi groups [i.e., the Kurds]?

“Erdogan, who personally helped ignite flames inside Syria, [and] who opened the Turkish borders to masses of refugees and then threatened to expel them from Turkey in order to pressure and blackmail Europe… is [now] wondering how it is possible to remain silent in the face of the Islamophobia, antisemitism and growing antagonism to immigrants and foreigners that prevail in the West. Anyone listening to Erdogan… might think he is Mother Theresa, rather than a dictator who is determined to fill Turkey’s prisons with journalists and oppositionists…

“The West, and especially the U.S., are well aware that Erdogan has been sheltering ISIS and proving it with financial assistance and [other] means since 2012. On orders from Turkish intelligence, Turkish customs officers help this organization’s fighters cross the border to Syria and Iraq in droves…

“Politicians are often forced to lie, [but] they are careful to keep their lies logical and therefore credible. Erdogan is different. When it comes to lying, he is a faithful disciple of Nazi propaganda minister [Joseph] Goebbels. He [just] keeps lying, in hope that people will believe him even though the lie is obvious.  Most of the ISIS fighters who crossed into Syria and Iraq and declared the Islamic Caliphate there passed through Turkey. Proof of this is the fact that dozens of the fighters who were captured by the American Kurdish forces who helped the Americans were found to have Turkish stamps on their passports…

“Another characteristic of Erdogan, in addition to lying, is mixing things up. According to him, these terror organizations serve only the interests of the imperialists, and he expresses sorrow that countries that purport to be democracies and to defend human rights ignore the crimes perpetrated by these organizations. Erdogan cannot say, ‘I was misled,’ because Turkey’s sheltering of ISIS starts at the very top echelons of the Turkish leadership. In 2016, Wikileaks published 58,000 emails proving that Erdogan’s son-in-law, Berat Albayrak, was involved in marketing stolen Syrian and Iraqi oil for the benefit of ISIS. Sümeyye Erdogan, the daughter of the Turkish president, established well-equipped medical centers in Urfa in southeastern Turkey, near the Syrian border, to care for wounded ISIS soldiers. There is extensive proof of Erdogan’s direct and indirect support of ISIS and its affiliated terror groups. Why then does Western media insist on ignoring this?”


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[1] Al-Arab (London), September 26, 2019. 

Featured image: Ali Qassem (Source: Al-Arab, London)

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