What Are the Turks Aiming At?

Αssociated Press

Turkey s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, talks during an event in Ankara, Turkey, Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020. (Turkish Presidency via AP, Pool)

With less than 20 days to go before the election, America is increasingly losing patience with Erdogan.

It’s about time. With the President devoting all his time and power to the fight for his re-election, the professional diplomats of the State Department – with the concurrence of their chief, Mike Pompeo – made an announcement this week exposing Erdogan and his tricks. Their statement leaves absolutely no doubt about the party they support: Greece.

Below I have republished part of the State Department’s announcement:

“The United States deplores Turkey’s October 11 announcement of renewed Turkish survey activity in areas over which Greece asserts jurisdiction in the Eastern Mediterranean. Turkey’s announcement unilaterally raises tensions in the region and deliberately complicates the resumption of crucial exploratory talks between our NATO Allies Greece and Turkey.

“Coercion, threats, intimidation, and military activity will not resolve tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean. We urge Turkey to end this calculated provocation and immediately begin exploratory talks with Greece. Unilateral actions cannot build trust and will not produce enduring solutions.”

Apart from the harshness of the disapproval that is expressed, which I find unusual, at least where Turkey is concerned, there are two words that we need to analyze, because they seem to hide a lot.

The statement said Turkey: "Deliberately complicates the resumption of crucial exploratory talks between our NATO Allies Greece and Turkey.”

And adds: “We urge Turkey to end this calculated provocation.”

What do they mean by "deliberately" and "calculated"? And if they are doing it "deliberately" and if the acts are “calculated,” then why are they doing it, and what are they aiming at?

Why? It is easy to see. They aim to prevent talks with Greece from even commencing.

But what is the ultimate goal?

This is the crucial question: Have they perhaps not completed their seismic research and need more time to complete it?

Or are they waiting for something else, i.e., for the U.S. elections? And if so, why?

Maybe they hope to get more favorable treatment – if Trump is re-elected – when the talks finally take place, or during a possible conflict?

Or are they preparing for the lame duck period between the election and January 20, when they swear-in the new president, if Biden wins?