I have been sounding the warning over Turkey since January 2009. Now that Turkey has instigated a confrontation with Israel, it is important to keep Turkey’s greater game in mind.
Glick makes another important point, which is that alongside the shooting war is an information war. The information war is designed to deligitimize Israel and deprive it of the ability to defend itself:
This is where the Useful Idiots, like Glenn Greenwald, come in. By demonizing and dehumanizing Israel and its supporters (for example, labeling them “Israel-firsters“), and attacking everything Israel does to defend itself, the incessant critics of Israel put Israel on the defensive militarily.
The flotilla incident is a good example. Apparently fearing criticism of using “excessive force,” Israeli commandos initially only used paint ball guns (a mild form of riot control) to defend themselves. Had the Israeli commandos gone in with a greater show of force, and cleared the decks with tear gas, stun grenades, and other non-lethal forms of crowd control, there likely would have been no deaths.
This lack of force allowed the jihadist agitators on board the Turkish vessel to attack the commandos with iron bars and other weapons, which resulted in the commandos having to use deadly force to defend themselves. The use of deadly force, of course, was just more excuse to attack Israel.
The information war contributed to the fiasco at sea, and the fiasco itself became another weapon to be used against Israel.
In many ways, the information war is as important as the shooting war. The isolation of Israel by a ring of missile launching pads in Lebanon, Syria and Gaza is matched by the isolation of Israel by the Islamist-leftist coalition.
I am reasonably confident Israel can win a shooting war, although the price it will pay is rising dramatically.
As to the information war, I’m not so sure.
Fortunately, the vast majority of Americans do not buy into the verbal and written garbage hurled by the liberal intelligentsia at Israel.
We need to keep it that way.
Note: With this post, I’m starting a Turkey post tag, since I have a feeling I’m going to be posting on Turkey’s slide into Islamism in the coming months and years.
Update: Read Robert Pollak’s article in The Wall Street Journal, Erdogan and the Decline of the Turks:
To follow Turkish discourse in recent years has been to follow a national decline into madness. Imagine 80 million or so people sitting at the crossroads between Europe and Asia. They don’t speak an Indo-European language and perhaps hundreds of thousands of them have meaningful access to any outside media. What information most of them get is filtered through a secular press that makes Italian communists look right wing by comparison and an increasing number of state (i.e., Islamist) influenced outfits. Topics A and B (or B and A, it doesn’t really matter) have been the malign influence on the world of Israel and the United States.
Charles Krauthammer also gets it right:
The whole point of this relentless international campaign is to deprive Israel of any legitimate form of self-defense.