Friday, March 23, 2012

Is Obama Treating Turkey Like Israel?

And you know that can't be good.

When Hillary Clinton recently met Turkey's FM Ahmet Davutoğlu, who offered Turkey's help and suggestions on Syria--Hillary cut him off at the knees:
In a previously unreported turn of events, it has now come to light that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in her meeting with Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu last month, emphatically dismissed a number of forward leaning options on Syria that the Turkish top diplomat proposed to the Obama administration.

What this means is that Washington, which at one point subcontracted its Syria policy to Ankara, has now called the Turks off the regime of Bashar al-Assad.

According to well-informed Turkish and US sources, during his meeting with Secretary Clinton, Davutoğlu put forward a set of measures, including, among others, creating a buffer zone and/or a humanitarian corridor, as well as organizing and equipping the Free Syrian Army (FSA). The secretary of state responded in no uncertain terms that the Obama administration had no interest in pursuing any of these options. In fact, according to one account, Clinton told her Turkish counterpart no less than three times, “We are not there.”
But Davutoğlu shouldn't feel bad. As far as Obama is concerned, it is up to the big boys to deal with the problem in Syria--and that excludes those countries in the region who have the most to lose from the instability in Syria:
This conversation fits well with the administration’s message to other regional allies, namely Saudi Arabia, against arming the FSA and pushing Washington’s preferred policy of going through the Russians, in an attempt to reach a “political solution” to the Syrian crisis.
We'll have to see how the Muslim world takes to being told to sit back and letting the US deal with the problem. That has not succeeded too well in bringing Abbas to the peace table to talk with Netanyahu.

Will Obama be more successful applying pressure on someone who actually does not want to talk like Assad?

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