Hugh Pope writes about the UN report on the Mavi Marmara flotilla incident, and links directly to the report. Click here for Pope?s full essay. An excerpt:
Furkan Dogan, a 19-year-old US citizen of Turkish descent, was aboard the Mavi Marmara when he was killed by Israeli commandos. (Photo: freegazaorg; Edited: Jared Rodriguez / t r u t h o u t)
Hugh Pope offers a thoughtful commentary on the UN Human Rights Commission’s September 23, 2010, report on the Mavi Marmara incident. While Israeli officials were at pains to dismiss the report out of hand, Pope shows that the report reflects a careful weighing of evidence. The report disproves key aspects of Israel’s account, including the allegation that the passengers were armed with firearms. The report establishes that two of those killed on board were documenting the boarding with video equipment, including Furkan Dogan, a U.S. citizen. (Dogan was shot twice in the head at close range.)
At the beginning of the year, Eurasia Group’s President Ian Bremmer and Head of Research David Gordon announced Top Risks and Red Herrings for 2010
“We?ll also still see significant concerns within developed states this year–weaker states in Europe under massive fiscal pressure; financial regulatory reform in the United States; and the impact of a political revolution in Japan. A few surprises from emerging markets–Brazil?s a risk this year, as coming elections are more troubled than people expect. India-Pakistan risk resurfaces after years of quiet engagement (while Afghanistan, making headlines throughout the year, is effectively pushed as a top risk to 2011 by the US troop surge). Unemployment coupled with a spate of elections merit a spot for Eastern Europe in the top ten. And a host of domestic and international stresses puts Turkey on the list too, though barely.”
I had the opportunity yesterday to meet and listen to Turkey?s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu at Harvard University. I found him to be a most impressive man, able to speak in great detail about any of Turkey?s many foreign policy issues. His program is well known ? he is the person who has steered Turkey into becoming a global power broker, breaking down Cold-War-era barriers and attitudes to other countries. His mantras are zero problems, maximum engagement. Rather than a defensive stance, he believes that Turkey should leverage its strategic location, its strong economy, and its Muslim and Western identity into regional leadership and political participation at a global level. Turkey?s characteristics and interests fit it to be a political broker and a regional economic multiplier. (Those are my terms; Davutoğlu has the uncanny ability to say very complicated things in language that appears almost conversational.)
Turkey has accepted an extension of its command of NATO forces in Afghanistan?s Kabul for another year. Turkey has led NATO?s International Security Assistance Force, or ISAF, since Nov. 1, 2009. (Bolow) Logo of ISAF. Pashto writing: ??? ?? ?????? (Komak aw Hamkari) meaning “Help and Cooperation”.
Turkey isn?t even a member yet, but deputy prime minister Ali Babacan is already demanding a leading role in Europe for his country. All you have to do is look at Turkey’s economic and demographic growth to see it’s likely to get what it wants, says Die Presse
There has been a lot of discussion regarding the political motivations behind Turkey’s ambitious foreign policy moves, but what about the economic angle? The evolution of the mantra governing Ankara’s new foreign policy from “Zero Problems With Neighbors” to “Zero Problems, Maximum Trade” seems to say quite a bit about what role economics and the pursuit of economic growth have to do with Turkey’s changing approach to many of its neighbors.
Report of the international fact-finding mission regarding the Israeli attacks on the humanitarian flotilla
15th session of the Human Rights Council, Geneva 13 September – 1 October 2010
Report of the international fact-finding mission to investigate violations of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, resulting from the Israeli attacks on the flotilla of ships carrying humanitarian assistance
To read the full report in PDF format click here