ABDULHAMIT – Dying to fit into Iran’s old shoes

Dying to fit into Iran’s old shoesThe processes of change the Middle Eastern region’s two major countries, Iran and Turkey, have been going through in recent years have interesting contrasts. Until recently, Turkey’s domestic and foreign policies were envied by many countries in the region, including Iran.

During his eight-year presidential term, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad restricted freedoms at home and antagonized many people, including the founders of the regime, while pursuing a policy of hostility against many countries.On the other hand, during the same period, freedoms were being expanding and the economy was improving in Turkey, as Ankara was dispensing with old hostilities and establishing good relations with both the West and the East.

Turkey had emerged as a soft power, and was able to establish dialogue with all groups in the region, trying to reconcile the participants in conflict in the region. It embodied the vision of opening the way to all sorts of interaction by tearing down the walls that hindered relations between countries.

At that time, many Iranians would spend their holiday in Turkey and watch our TV series with interest. Some Iranian intellectuals I had spoken to at that time had even acknowledged that Iran should take Turkey as an example.

During the Ahmadinejad era, Iran was excluded from the external world and its influence in the Middle East had waned. It fell behind Turkey in terms of regional competition and its economy went bankrupt.

Despite its oil riches, the sale of gasoline was rationed. In the face of the country’s worsening performance, Iranians elected Hassan Rouhani as their president in the 2013 elections, thereby turning a new page.

Rouhani was a reliable figure from inside the regime, but he held a doctorate of philosophy from the United Kingdom As soon as he was elected, he sent conciliatory messages to the international community. Iran started to hold direct talks with the US regarding the nuclear issue.

This policy of conciliation was pursued consciously and gave the impression that it was modeled after the successful policies Turkey pursued until recently. Soon it began to yield successful results.

Sanctions were relaxed and the restrictions on frozen Iranian funds were lifted. The same conciliatory approach could also be seen in Iran’s domestic politics.

Now the world sees Iran as a responsible player in the Middle East.Recently, journalist DoIan ErtuIrul published a series about Babak Zanjani, who is said to be the real boss of Reza Zarrab, the number one suspect in the graft and bribery probe of Dec.

17, 2013, shedding light on the shady and corrupt economic and fiscal web of relations of the Ahmadinejad era Tehran is now looking for the billions of dollars earned in an undeserved manner by those who acted as intermediaries to export Iran’s oil, which the regime was not allowed to sell due to embargoes. In addition to judicial processes, Iran set up three parliamentary commissions to investigate into the corrupt practices of the old eraWeirdly enough, at a time when Iran is trying to normalize its relations with the external world and settling accounts with corrupt practices, Turkey is turning to the policies that are reminiscent of the Iran of the Ahmadinejad era Indeed, Turkey is getting increasingly isolated in the region and around the world, and it challenges everyone.

In the face of corruption allegations, the Turkish government is trying to forcefully repress the opposition. Turkey’s relations with terrorist groups are being debated.

As noted by the Human Rights Watch (HRW), Turkey modeled the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) after Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. It tries to revive the one-party mentality in all state organs.

The Turkish government is voicing divisive arguments, and created a loyal media and intellectual structure using the carrot and stick method. It attacks a global movement which originated in Turkey.

For the first time, a Turkish statesman referred to Iran as his second home. All these developments show that ErdoIan’s new Turkey is dying to fit into the shoes that Iran discarded.

No sane, patriotic person can say that this policy — which failed in Iran and which has the potential to turn Turkey into Somalia or Iraq — is a domestic or national one. Every patriot must then search for the answer to the following question: who thrusts these old shoes on Turkey via ErdoIan? The persistent efforts to cover up the Dec.

17 investigation — which implicated major members of the Turkish government — as well as the probe into the terrorist organization Tawhid-Salam (an Iranian-backed terrorist organization), and the identity and intentions of the small oligarchic group nested within the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) which derailed the party are important tips for understanding this enigma.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman