Yet another example of how the short-term exigencies of “smart” domestic politics creates pressures for a “not-so-smart” foreign policy. CS
SUZAN FRASER, Associated Press, 5 Mar 2010
ANKARA, Turkey – Turkey warned the Obama administration on Friday of negative diplomatic consequences if it doesn’t impede a U.S. resolution branding the World War I-era killing of Armenians genocide.
Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Turkey, a key Muslim ally of the U.S., would assess what measures it would take, adding that the issue was a matter of “honor” for his country.
A U.S. congressional committee approved the measure Thursday. The 23-22 vote sends the measure to the full House of Representatives, where prospects for passage are uncertain. Minutes after the vote, Turkey withdrew its ambassador to the U.S.
Historians estimate that up to 1.5 million Armenians were killed by Ottoman Turks around the time of World War I, an event widely viewed by scholars as the first genocide of the 20th century. Turkey denies that the deaths constituted genocide, saying the toll has been inflated and those killed were victims of civil war and unrest.
Phi Beta Iota: The lack of intelligence by the US Congress, combined with its lack of integrity, is not new. What is new is public realization that the US Government is completely broken and completely out of touch with both the real world, and the public recognition of Turkey’s vital importance to the future of both Persian and Arabic stability as well as, in passing, Central Asian stability. The gap between those in “power” and those with knowledge was cataclysmic in 1997, today it is beyond any voter’s worst nightmare.