This brief but compelling editorial at the Washington Post raises some excellent observations about Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan - whose Jew-hating, genocide-denying, jihad-inciting craziness has been documented on this blog many times before - in light of the Humanitarian Hate Boats affair. While I take exception to the piece's reference in its opening line to "Israel's poor judgment and botched execution in the raid against the Free Gaza flotilla", it does make some trenchant points about Erdogan, his reaction to the affair, and the way in which his hardcore sharia-supremacist, "soft" jihadist mindset is becoming more apparent to the objective observer by the day:
Yet the IHH [the Turkish "charity" which orchestrated the trouble-making expedition to Gaza] has certainly done its best to promote Mr. Erdogan. "All the peoples of the Islamic world would want a leader like Recep Tayyip Erdogan," IHH chief Bulent Yildirim proclaimed at a Hamas rally in Gaza last year. And Mr. Erdogan seems to share that notion: In the days since an incident that the IHH admits it provoked, the Turkish prime minister has done his best to compete with Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hezbollah's Hasan Nasrallah in attacking the Jewish state.
"The heart of humanity has taken one of her heaviest wounds in history," Mr. Erdogan claimed this week. He has had next to nothing to say about the slaughter of Iranians protesting last year's fraudulent elections, but he called Israel's actions "state terrorism" and a "bloody massacre" and described Israel itself as an "adolescent, rootless state." His foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, said in Washington on Tuesday that "this attack is like 9/11 for Turkey" -- an obscene comparison to events in which more than 2,900 genuinely innocent people were killed.
The piece finishes with an accurate summary of President Obama's weakness and stupidity in dealing with Turkey, which can be generally applied to the rest of his dealings with the Muslim world, as well:
Mr. Erdogan's crude attempt to exploit the incident comes only a couple of weeks after he joined Brazil's president in linking arms with Mr. Ahmadinejad, whom he is assisting in an effort to block new U.N. sanctions. What's remarkable about his turn toward extremism is that it comes after more than a year of assiduous courting by the Obama administration, which, among other things, has overlooked his antidemocratic behavior at home, helped him combat the Kurdish PKK and catered to Turkish sensitivities about the Armenian genocide. Israel is suffering the consequences of its misjudgments and disregard of U.S. interests. Will Mr. Erdogan's behavior be without cost?
I believe that Erdogan represents a more dangerous form of jihadist than that represented by bin Laden or the Taliban - the kind that believes in all the same stuff, but has managed to convince the world that he is a "moderate". But as harmful as his "turn toward extremism" may be for those in his path, in one way I am glad that he is abandoning his "moderate" facade: the more obvious he gets, more likely free people are to oppose him before he gets what he wants.
But I wouldn't count on Obama being one of the resistors.