Not sated by his anti-Semitism, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has tried his hand at another form of blatant racism.
In comments made about Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the center-left and secular Republican Peoples Party (CHP), Erdoğan declared, “Kılıçdaroğlu is striving every bit he can to raise himself from the level of a black person to the level of a white man.”
The comments were made during a weekly meeting of his Justice and Development Party (AKP).
Commentary Magazine, which spotted the report in Turkey’s Gazeticiler online newspaper, notes that “President Obama has described Erdoğan as one of the few leaders with whom he has developed bonds of trust,” calling into question the US’s awareness of how Erdoğan speaks for domestic consumption.
Meanwhile, in keeping with the Turkish government’s anti-Semitic tone that has been on the rise since unrest began in the country May 28th, the website Al-Monitor reports that its coverage of the protests has earned it the label “subcontractor of the Zionist lobby” by Medyagundem, a website said to be under the control of Turkey’s state-run Sabah daily.
Medyagundem writes: “There is a website called Al-Monitor. It is a platform that translates news and comments from Turkish, Arabic, Kurdish, Hebrew and Persian. Obviously, it is a costly operation. You can find local language articles in English on this site. Its selections of news and articles is meticulously made and is highly professional. Its main theme is the news and analysis that will serve the interests of Israel and the global Zionist network.”
“The site’s stated goal is to tell the Western world about the Middle East. They have only one condition while doing that. Works of anyone who is a sworn enemy of Islamists and conservative administrations and actors are translated immediately into English.”
“In addition to translations, they also have regular writers. Some of its Turkish writers are interesting. This team that complains about their own country to the West in an Islamophobic, Zionist media organ has not come together by coincidence.”
The author of the Al-Monitor article that addresses the accusation, Cengiz Candar, writes that a list of Turkish writers accompanying the Medyagundem article includes him, “someone known as one of the most critical writers against Israel for decades,” before broaching whether Erdogan’s administration has “lost its bearings and [is] heading in a McCarthyist direction.”