Turkey Wants Empire Based on Sharia
Barry Nussbaum: Hello, welcome to ATP Report. I'm Barry Nussbaum. We have been discussing the Middle East, specifically the Turkish invasion of northern Syria, the slaughter of the former Kurdish allies of the United States, what the world thinks, and what will happen as a result. We have with us our very special guest, Clare Lopez, Middle East expert, Vice President at the Center for Security Policy, and contributor to ATP Report. Clare, thank you for coming back.
Clare Lopez: And thank you for having me back, Barry.
Barry Nussbaum: Of course. So we know what's been happening. We've talked about it in a number of segments. And quite frankly, Turkey makes no secret, as you talked about in your article that their goal is to rule for a strict Muslim Sharia-compliant religious basis. They want a caliphate. The Kurds are a different form of Islam, less radical. However, fearsome fighters themselves who want, well, self-government, as you talked about earlier. They've wanted their own territory for over 100 hundred years since what was promised didn't get delivered. Can the Kurds be trusted as our allies if we were to go back after they'd been abandoned by us according to everybody's interpretation of what the United States has done?
Clare Lopez: Well, at first, very what I would say is that what really needs to be understood by the Trump administration and Europeans and others is there is only one Islam. There is one Sharia. There aren't different versions, but what there is, is a variation in the degree to which various Muslim populations and regimes are obedient in executing in fulfilling Islamic law. And right now, the trajectory of the Turkish regime under Erdogan, the one very openly, very clearly is not just on a trajectory to re-Islamize the government of Turkey. I'm not sure that the people ever were not Islamized, especially in perhaps the hinterland of Anatolia, but the Erdogan regime and its top officials have spoken repeatedly about their desire to re-establish the Ottoman Empire. And now, this is the interesting part, in the region many who are not Turks, in other words, Arabs, Christians, and many others, certainly the Jews remember the Ottoman Empire, the hundreds of years of of of suppression, oppression under the tyrannical regime, of a sequence of sultans with trepidation, with horror they remember that period. The Kurds, yes, they are majority Sunni Muslims, as I've said. But among them also are Christians, Syriac Christians, and others who are not Muslim. And even among those of the Kurds who are Muslim, they are not at the moment jihadi. And I think that's the dividing line. Jihad is an obligation of Islamic law under Sharia for every Muslim, wherever they may be in the entire world until the entire world is under an Islamic state and rule of Sharia. That is the obligation of the faith. The Kurds are not doing that right now. The Turks do seem to be on a path to do that right now. And I think that's the understanding that is missing in too many of the assessments going on right now. To understand, in other words, where the Turks are going, where is Erdogan going? Is this just about carving out this buffer zone to the south of Turkey, in northern Syria? Is it just about resettling those refugees back into Syria?
Barry Nussbaum: On the subject of refugees, Clare and as you said, let's quote Erdogan, who says he is threatening to flood Europe with millions of refugees, Muslim refugees, that is on top of the millions are already there wreaking havoc throughout Western Europe. And Erdogan is threatening a population jihad similar to and on top of what's already occurred.
Clare Lopez: Yes, he is. And that that is Erdogan's threat to try to, I guess, stifle the as we were talking about earlier, the response by Western Europeans and others in condemnation of his invasion and assault against the Kurds. And in response, it is not conciliatory at all. He's saying, stop it. You know, put a sock in it, or I'm going to flood you. Well, you know, I'm going to flood you. That's from his side. What about Germany? What about, you know, Britain, France, Spain, Italy? You know, they don't have to let these people come in. They don't have to allow them to overrun their countries, their culture, their civilization. And indeed, in places like Hungary, Prime Minister Viktor Orban, for example, had a very simple response. And that was a very high tech double fence line across his border, which is the direction that migrants earlier were coming. They don't come that way anymore.
Barry Nussbaum: Well said. And on a corollary, it's a great argument for a wall on the United States, the southern border, because, quite frankly, wall fence combination system, just like in Israel, keeps out the bad guys. So you've got the United States Congress on the same plane as Western Europe all saying bad choice by the president. We can't abandon these people. They're going to be slaughtered and. At the same time, the slaughtering is being done by a Turkish dictator who, as you said, and you laid it out beautifully in your article that just got released. I advise all of our listeners to grab it, and I'm going to ask you in a minute where they can find it. Quite frankly, he says he's on his way to a caliphate. He's going t raise the flag of the caliphate. It's going to be Sharia-compliant, Sharia-compliant from a Turkish point of view, like it was before. And they make no bones about it. Get out of the way, or we're going to come right over you. Can Erdogan be stopped? And if so, Clare, tell us how.
Clare Lopez: Well, certainly, he can be stopped. And the Center for Security Policy, thank for mentioning, has been trying to warn about Erdogan now for at least the last couple of years. We published last year in twenty eighteen a book called Ally No More. Erdogan's New Turkish Caliphate and the Rising Jihadist Threat to the West. And I cite that article or that book, I should say, in my new article called Erdogan's Jihad Offensive Began Many Months Ago that was published at the CSB Website, CenterforSecurityPolicy.org or a shorter URL is SecureFreedom.org. All of our papers, all of our books are available there online in PDF, free download or in terms of the books, and you can go to Amazon.com. But we've been trying to warn, you know, what path Erdogan and Turkey are on. It seems to have gone unheeded that warning, and we are where we are. We know that Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo were sent over to Turkey to try to reach some sort of agreement about halting the offensive, about stopping the invasion. We'll have to see where that goes because, given the long-time expressed intent of Erdogan and turkey to embark on this path of jihad and re-establishment of the Ottoman Empire, it doesn't seem that they are going to be persuaded to stop. Although the Turkish economy is in a weakened state and harsh, tough new sanctions being imposed by the Trump administration may have some effect, but it's not going to affect the underlying intent and motivation that drove this invasion in the first place. So I think we need an acknowledgment of what those drivers are. First, because without understanding that, you know, the mere application of sanctions will not get to the root of where this comes from.
Barry Nussbaum: You make the perfect point in your article. For those of us that know history, this sure looks a lot like the 1930s and Hitler's desire to rule the world, starting with the Sudetenland. And it was one little chunk of real estate after another and even Great Britain that proclaimed erroneously by their prime minister peace in our time, which turned out to be a laughing stock appraisal of the political climate in Europe, turned into the greatest slaughter the world has ever known. You now have 70 years later a leader who is just as crazy, just as bent on world domination. Although now it's not national socialism, it's Sharia as the flag they're going to carry. But he's told everybody what he's going to do as you pointed out, Clare. And now he's doing it. The question is, will we the world who doesn't want to be part of his caliphate have the backbone that we didn't have in the thirties with Adolf Hitler and the Nazis? We're going to leave it there for today. Thanks for joining us on ATP Report. You can text the word TRUTH to 88202, truth TO 88202. That will sign you up to be on our mailing list. You won't miss any of these exciting episodes and articles that people like Clare Lopez contribute to ATP. It's always free, and you never have to go anywhere. The reports will come right to you. For ATP Report, I'm Barry Nussbaum.