Erdogan’s Hypocrisy Over Khashoggi’s Murder

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Erdogan’s Hypocrisy Over Khashoggi’s Murder

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.orgHome – Stephen Lendman)

Turkey under Erdogan’s leadership is a fascist dictatorship, masquerading as democratic. Criticizing Riyadh for Khashoggi’s murder is like the pot calling the kettle black.

Both countries commit horrendous human rights abuses. Neither tolerates criticism of their ruling authorities.

In 2016, Erdogan abolished constitutional governance, usurping dictatorial powers following the aborted mid-July coup attempt.

At the time, he declared a state of emergency, falsely claiming he acted to assure Turkey’s “peace and stability” to combat “the terrorist threat that our country is facing.”

He arrested tens of thousands extrajudicially, purged over 160,000  judges, academics, human rights workers, journalists, police and civil servants.

He closed countless numbers of private schools and universities, charities and foundations, trade unions, hospitals and medical facilities.

Anyone suspected of links to regime opponent Fethullah Gulen, living in America, risks arrest, imprisonment, or elimination the way de facto Saudi ruler Mohammad bin Salman (MBS) dealt with Jamal Khashoggi.

Erdogan long ago lost credibility, waging war on Kurds internally and cross-border, eliminating fundamental freedoms while claiming democratic credentials.

Legitimate opposition is considered terrorism or treason. Critics, including journalists, human rights workers, academics, students and children are subject to arrest and imprisonment. 

Courts are largely rubber-stamp. Guilt by accusation is regime policy. Turkey under Erdogan wages war on press freedom, shutting down independent media, imprisoning more journalists than any other country for the crime of truth-telling.

Earlier he cited Hitler as a role model, calling his Nazi regime perhaps an ideal way to run Turkey, saying he wants things streamlined for more effective decision-making – code language for wanting iron-fisted rule, all challengers and critics eliminated.

Turkish and Saudi rule are much the same, Erdogan and MBS mirror images of each other – despotic, iron-fisted, defiant of democratic principles and rule of law principles, along with tolerating no criticism of regime policies.

On Wednesday, they spoke by phone for the first time since Jamal Khashoggi’s murder inside the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate.

According to an unnamed source, they discussed “joint efforts and the steps that need to be taken in order to shed light on the Jamal Khashoggi murder in all its aspects” – with no further elaboration.

Separately from Riyadh, MBS said the Khashoggi incident won’t “drive a wedge” between the kingdom and Turkey, vowing “in the end justice will prevail” – ignoring his direct responsibility for ordering Khashoggi’s brutal abduction and elimination.

Canadian PM Justice Trudeau and Spanish PM Pedro Sanchez said their governments will continue selling arms to the Saudis. So will most, perhaps all, other Western countries.

Britain’s Theresa May followed the Trump regime in revoking visas for Saudi nationals suspected of involvement in Khashoggi’s murder, their entry to both countries prohibited.

On Wednesday, Erdogan said he won’t let Saudis responsible for Khashoggi’s murder go unpunished – again stopping short of placing blame where it mostly belongs, MBS culpability not mentioned.

According to the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said MBS wouldn’t have ordered Khashoggi’s assassination without an OK from Washington.

“I don’t think that a country would dare commit such a crime without the protection of America,” he stressed.

Whether true or not, it’s clear the Trump regime wants nothing interfering with longstanding US/Saudi relations.

The same goes for the EU, Russia, China, and most other countries.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.