ISTANBUL (Armenpress)–As the Turkish Daily "Zaman" reported recently–Robert L. Pollock’s article titled "The Sick Man of Europe–Again," which appeared in the February 16 issue of the Wall Street Journal–has sent shock waves throughout the Republic of Turkey. Given the Journal’s friendly stance towards Turkey during the past five decades–and its senior editorial page writer’s personal attitude about the country–Pollock described himself as a friend of Turkey during an interview–the Turkish newspaper speculates that the article can only indicate a major shift in American sentiment toward the republic.
In the article–Pollock states that during a recent visit to Turkey he discovered "a poisonous atmosphere–one in which just about every politician and media outlet (secular and religious) preaches an extreme combination of America- and Jew-hatred that…voluntarily goes far further than anything found in most of the Arab world’s state-controlled press. If I hesitate to call it Nazi-like–that’s only because Goebbels would probably have rejected much of it as too crude."
Pollock fills his American audience in on the various rumors spread by Turkish newspapers regarding US’s presence in Iraq. "Yeni Safak," which Pollock states is Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s favorite–has unveiled a number of "scoops," including reports detailing the rape and murder of Iraqi women and children by US forces–the deployment of 1000 Israeli troops in Iraq–and the harvesting of the innards of dead Iraqis for the eventual sale on the US "organ market."
Referring to US Ambassador Eric Edelman’s difficulties in light of such attitudes–Pollock notes–"Never in an ostensibly friendly country have I had the impression of embassy staff so besieged. Erdogan’s office recently forbade Turkish officials from attending a reception at the ambassador’s residence in honor of the ‘Ecumenical ‘ Patriarch of the Orthodox Church–who resides in Istanbul. Why? Because ‘ecumenical’ means universal–which somehow makes it all part of a plot to carve up Turkey."
After describing several other such examples–Pollock ends his article with an ominous warning: "Turkey could easily become just another second-rate country: small-minded–paranoid–marginal and–how could it be otherwise?–friendless in America and unwelcome in Europe!"
According to "Zaman," Armenian- and Greek-Americans have provided significant support to Robert L. Pollock–in response to his views on Turkey. A Greek-American organization–according to "Zaman," has also distributed copies of Pollock’s article to members of Congress.
Among the many postings on the Wall Street Journal’s website–was one by a reader named David Govett–who wrote: "Turkey cannot be the sick man of Europe because it has never been a part of Europe. Ataturk’s initiatives to modernize Turkey were as successful as Crazy Peter’s Westernization attempts on Russia."