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Turkish Press Review, 03-03-05
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From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr><LINK href="http://www.byegm.gov.tr_yayinlarimiz_chr_pics_css/tpr.css" rel=STYLESHEET type=text/css> e-mail : email@example.com <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
05.03.2003FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…
 PRIME MINISTER GUL TO ATTEND OIC MEETINGPrime Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday traveled to Doha, the capital of Qatar, to attend the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) meeting. The OIC meeting is expected to focus on the Iraq and Palestinian crisis. /Star/
 ERDOGAN: “TURKEY SHOULDN’T BE JUST AN ONLOOKER TO DEVELOPMENTS IN IRAQ”Speaking at his party’s group meeting yesterday, ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey shouldn’t be just an onlooker to the developments in its neighbour country due to both its own security and Iraq’s territorial integrity. “Our approach to the problem shouldn’t be as Australia or Norway because a possible US-led operation against Iraq won’t negatively affect them,” said Erdogan. “However, the operation will have negative affects on Turkey and we should take necessary measures.” He stated that the US should consider Turkey’s sensitivities while pursuing a policy on Iraq since Turkey wanted to continue its good relations with the US. /Milliyet/
 US AMBASSADOR PEARSON VISITS PRIME MINISTER GULUS Ambassador to Ankara Robert Pearson yesterday visited Prime Minister Abdullah Gul. Pearson stated that the Bush administration still hoped that a second proposal authorizing the US to deploy troops at Turkey’s military facilities might be prepared and accepted by the Turkish Parliament. “I want to emphasize that there is a strong friendship between Turkey and the US,” said Pearson. “I believe that these two countries will work and overcome this crisis together.” He also stated that the US would not provide Turkey with financial assistance before an agreement on Turkey’s Iraq policy was reached. /Cumhuriyet/
 CHP LEADER BAYKAL ASKS: “DOESN’T WAR HAVE A COST”Opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal yesterday strongly criticized the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government as 2003 budget bringing $9.5 billion additional tax burden to people, was presented as the cost of peace. Baykal asked the government, “Doesn’t war have a cost?” Speaking at his party’s parliamentary group meeting, Baykal said, “I hope Turkey will not be forced to accept a proposal which it rejected recently. If that happens, Turkey will then face a greatest damage.” Remarking that before elections the AK Party had asked for votes of citizens who had low income, the CHP leader claimed that then those would suffer under the government’s rule. /Turkiye/
 AIR FORCE COMMANDER GEN. ASPARUK: “TURKISH AIR FORCE HAS ALWAYS BEEN READY TO DEFEND THE COUNTRY”Air Force Commander Gen. Cumhur Asparuk said yesterday that the Turkish Armed Force (TSK) had taken necessary measures to defend Turkey against possible threats in the event of a war in Iraq. Before meeting with his Dutch counterpart Lt. Gen. D.L. Berlijn who is currently paying a visit to Turkey, Asparuk answered reporters’ questions regarding the recent developments in the northern Iraq. “Our measures are taken to defend our country, rather than for involvement in any attack,” said Asparuk. The commander said that the Patriot missile defense systems which arrived in Turkey last week and were deployed in southeastern Anatolia would be ready on Wednesday. He said that it was up to NATO to decide on whether the Patriots could stay in Turkey longer than originally proposed. “NATO will withdraw its forces here as it agrees that the threat has disappeared. If the threat escalates, then it will be ready for action at full capacity. In this case, the number of AWACS early warning aircraft will be increased from two to four,” he said. A parliamentary vote not allowing deployment of US troops in Turkey didn’t affect Turkish army’s preparations as they were all for defense, added Asparuk. /Turkiye/
 STATE MINISTER BABACAN TO TRAVEL TO THE USState Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan is set to travel to Washington on March 15, to meet with International Monetary Fund and World Bank officials regarding Turkey’s economic program and their support. He is also expected to meet with officials from the United States Treasury and other economic officials as well as international investment banks and credit rating institutions on March 20-21 in New York. /Turkiye/
 DENKTAS TO VISIT TURKEY TODAYTurkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas is to pay a visit to Ankara today to discuss recent developments on the Cyprus issue with the Turkish officials. He is expected to meet with President Ahmet Necdet Sezer and Chief of General Staff Gen. Hilmi Ozkok. UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan recently wanted Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders to put his peace plan for Cyprus directly to referendum on the island if they cannot agree on it in the coming days. However, Denktas opposes such an idea criticizing the UN Cyprus plan for ignoring Turkish Cypriots’ interests. /Star- Cumhuriyet/
 VERHEUGEN: “TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP IS UP TO A RESOLUTION IN CYPRUS”Guenter Verheugen, European Union commisioner for enlargement, said yesterday that Turkey’s EU membership was up to a resolution in Cyprus. Verheugen stated that the Greek Cyprus would be a member of the Union next year. He added that if Turkey didn’t recognize the Greek Cyprus after it joins the EU, he didn’t know how the accession negotiations could begin with Turkey in 2004. Verheugen added that there was a golden chance to resolve the Cyprus issue and that if the two sides wouldn’t reach an agreement, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) could face economic and political isolation. /Milliyet/
 RUSSIA, IRAN APPRECIATE TURKEY’S STANCE ON THE IRAQ CRISISRussian head of state Vladimir Putin and Iranian Foreign Minister Kemal Harrazi recently stated that they appreciated Turkey’s stance on the Iraq issue as the Turkish Parliament recently rejected a proposal authorizing US to deploy troops on Turkish soil. “Russia finds Turkey’s reluctant stance understandable,” said Putin. “I’m not surprised with the decision of the Turkish Parliament. We understand Turkey’s concerns.” In addition, Iranian Foreign Minister Harrazi yesterday remarked that Iran appreciated Turkey’s Iraq policy. /Cumhuriyet/
 DAWSON: “AKP’S ECONOMIC MEASURES ARE VERY POSITIVE”Tom Dawson, International Monetary Fund external relations director, said yesterday that the measures declared by Prime Minister Abdullah Gul were very positive and pleased the IMF. Speaking at a press conference, Dawson said that the process of writing the Letter of Intent (LOI) was still continuing. Asked about recent developments on the assistanse package the US would provide Turkey, Dawson stated that if there was such a package the sides would discuss its effects on Turkey’s economic program. “However, the program doesn’t depend on such a package,” he added. /Milliyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…
 MORE ROYALIST THAN THE KING BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)Columnist Fikret Bila comments on US’ and Turkey’s stance on Parliament’s refusal of the proposal on Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:
“It’s strange that certain Turkish analysts and media organs seem to be angry with Parliament’s refusal of the proposal on Iraq more than the US. They write about the troubles that Turkey will face due to Parliament’s decision and frighten the Turkish public on behalf of the US. They complain about what a great mistake (!) Parliament had made. Even some analysts wrote, ‘You didn’t allow the US soldiers, so withdraw the Turkish soldiers from northern Iraq. Why are our soldiers there?’ However, the US’ reactions aren’t as harsh as ours. This situation makes us think that some of these analysts are more royalists than the king. Clearly the US was sad about Parliament’s decision, which is very natural. Just like the majority of people in Turkey, they thought that Parliament would approve of the proposal and made their calculations according to this expectation but the proposal was refused. However, the US didn’t consider this the end of the world like some of us. The US and the European press published articles praising Turkey’s stance and criticizing US’ stance and certain articles and cartoons against Turkey’s honor.
After US Secretary of State Colin Powell, in his message to Prime Minister Abdullah Gul, US President George W. Bush conveyed his appreciation yesterday. He stated that he respected Ankara’s decision and democratic structure. Powell’s and Bush’s messages show that Washington realized certain truths. The US hasn’t sent messages of disaster that suggest burning the bridges with Turkey, declaring a Kurdish state, starting an economic embargo against Turkey, destroying Turkey or taking Turkish soldiers out of northern Iraq.
In addition, nobody is asking what the Turkish soldiers are doing in northern Iraq because they know that the Turkish soldiers are there by depending on the law, which the Poised Hammer depends. They also know that the Turkish soldiers aren’t there as the advance unit of the US army. They will carry out their duty not for the US, but for Turkey.
It was also understood that Parliament should see that the US soldiers’ passage through Turkey and Turkish soldiers’ presence in northern Iraq are for Turkey’s favor. Otherwise, this can’t be ensured. The US has understood it already but we haven’t.”
 TURKEY’S IDEOLOGICAL UNIVERSE SPLITS BY ERGIN YILDIZOGLU (CUMHURIYET)Columnist Ergin Yildizoglu comments on current political situation in Turkey after Parliament overturned Saturday a proposal which would have allowed deployment of US troops on Turkish soil. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Turkey’s ideological universe split when Parliament failed to approve US troops proposal last Saturday. This universe, which has long been kept intact by a false claim that globalization and the US hegemony are inevitable and resisting them would amount to nothing, has began wearing thin so much so that new options’ entering into it is now more probable than ever. The crack can get even bigger.
The concept of colonialism, when stripped of its historical attributes, can be described, in philosopher and anti-colonialist Frantz Fanon’s words, as “the power and the ability of an outsider to rule over a national realm.” The outsider enters this realm by using force (though not always a physical one). It transforms or completely destroys economic and cultural structures of that realm; it realizes its power there through representative bodies or institutions. The foreigner declares that particular national culture ‘inferior’ and moulds a new social class which would adopt and reproduce a ‘superior’ culture. This new social class begins to see itself through the gaze of the ‘other’ and asserts itself as the dynamics of progress, reproducing racist tendencies of the colonial power.
Drawing on these conclusions, Turkey can be said to have been suffering from a colonial syndrome for quite a long time now. And recently, we once again witnessed ‘the power of the other’ unfolding as negotiations between Turkey and the US proceeded on a war against Iraq. The government has begun talking to the US without taking the ruling party’s and the Turkish people’s tendencies into account. It has put forward US’ will as Turkey’s only option and presented Washington’s shaky and ambiguous promises as real gains. It has used International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) pressures to defend its own cause. It could resist neither to the US nor to IMF’s demands.
We can face more serious problems in the future if we don’t see things through the crack the US troops proposal had opened and question the colonialist syndrome.”
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