Now that another NRO voice has joined the general exchange of ignorance about the Istanbul bombings, it’s high time for a corrective from, of all places, The Wall Street Journal. Interesting analysis by Norman Stone, a scholar who actually lives in Turkey:
Do significant people want Turkey out of the way–destabilized? Someone is out to undermine Turkey, maybe to get rid of the government, which, for the first time in years, has a respectable majority and promises some sort of continuity. The world is pointing fingers at al Qaeda, and there is much assertion that that group is out to punish Turkey for its modernity, its relations with Israel, and its history of hostility to adamantine Islam. There is also the uncomfortable example, in Tayyip Erdogan’s government, of Muslim moderateness at work.
But let us not forget that Turkey was at best a reluctant partner, to put it with saccharine kindness, on Iraq, and that it did not, in the end, send troops there. So we must look beyond the suspects thrown up by prevailing fashions, and various glib analyses–and think “outside the box,” as younger Americans say. If you believe, as I do, that the real aim was to damage Turkey, this looks to me, very possibly, like the PKK, the violent, leftist Kurdish separatist outfit. They have the local experience and expertise, and took their lessons in the old communist world–their propaganda, shared with the Sendero Luminoso, talks of anti-imperialism, and of eradicating the comprador class. What has been going on in Turkey–the next target is said to be Ankara, where I sit–has nothing to do with the Jews or the English, or Iraq. The target is Turkey–the only place between Athens and Singapore where people can live a decent life. And no one hates Turkey more than the PKK.
Not those lovable Kurdish freedom fighters! How are we gonna spin Saddam into this, Ms. Mylroie?