Letters to the Editor The Wall Street Journal 200 Liberty Street New York, NY 10281
To the Editor:
I should not have been disappointed with your Aug. 16 editorial, "Get Serious About Turkey", because it expresses the thinking of the mainstream press on the subject, but I was expecting a more pragmatic approach from your writers. Is it really detrimental to our interests that the Turkish Prime Minister approached Teheran? Doesn't it validate what many of our foreign affairs experts of the last two or three administrations have foreseen and steered for, i.e. that Turkey's future lies eastwards? To be sure, this seems a distasteful concept to some Turkish politicians, who (paying lip service to Ataturk's Western aspirations) would really prefer immediate access to EU coffers rather than the hard work of playing a leadership role east of Anatolia. Isn't it preferable having the unpredictable, economically unstable Tehran regime rely for an important portion of its income upon Turkey, a NATO ally, rather than see it move towards unanticipated and desperate solutions? This arrangement in the end may be far more preferable than: 1) having Turkish politicians destabilizing the area with useless and damaging distractions for their voters, like threatening Greek territorial integrity and keeping an expensive 32,000-strong occupation force on Cyprus, while 2) embarrassing us and our European partners with rampant human rights violations and ethnic cleansing campaigns which we have not been able to credibly reconcile with our values and culture? This agreement between two international pariahs with penchants for transnational aggression may ironically help bring both Iran and Turkey closer into the western fold by encouraging western ties and dependence by the former, and providing an economic boost as well as a vision for the latter, the lack of which has often led to Ankara's unseemly foreign and domestic policies. Very truly yours, George Voryas* *Mr. Voryas has served as Editor, Deputy Chief and Acting Chief at Voice of America, Greek Service.