Imagine a country where over 11 percent of the population (over 9 million people) view ISIS favorably, where funding is easily found for nearly all radical Sunni organizations ( including al Nusra and ISIS) , where shouts of “Allahu Akbar” flooded a soccer stadium during a moment of silence honoring the victims of the Paris terror attacks. Now, for the toughest challenge, suspend your disbelief and try to imagine such a country being granted with visa-free travel throughout Europe. Written sadly, this scenario could become a reality for Turkey.
Human Rights Violations:
The European Union asked member states this week to grant visa-free travel to Turks in return for Ankara stopping migrants reaching Europe. In addition, before accomplishing the deal, Turkey would have to change aspects of their domestic policy, including bringing its terrorism laws in line with EU standards.
Such changes in policy would include a needed narrowing of Tukey’s broad anti-terrorism laws, which have been used to silence virtually all public dissent. Under the law’s current definition, critical journalists and academics are consistently jailed for making “terrorist propaganda,” “attempting to influence a trial” and even “insulting Turkishness.” The looseness of such legislation allows for subjective, repressive use against virtually all dissenting opinion makers.
“We are teaching journalism students to go after the truth, investigate, be brave. But they quickly see that there is too much price to pay,” said Asil Tunc, journalism professor at Istanbul-Bilgi University.
Throughout the emergence of ISIS, Turkey’s 910-kilometer-long border with Syria had become an open door for jihadists from around the world, allowing thousands of new ISIS recruits and weapons to come in and fortunes worth of crude oil to come out and into the Turkish black-market.
Turkey’s support for extremist groups has been an unspoken, open secret since 2014, when Turkish “medical supplies” en route to Syria were discovered to contain missiles, rockets and large quantities of ammunition. One of the drivers testified that the cargo had been loaded from a foreign airplane at Ankara’s Esenboga Airport and that “we carried similar loads several times before.”
Two months after the seizure of the cargo, an audio recording was leaked to the social media by unknown sources, containing minutes of a top-secret meeting at the Turkish foreign ministry’s premises of some of Turkey’s most important men, including then-foreign minister Ahmet DavutoÄŸlu. “He had successfully sent two thousand trucks into Syria before,” said one of the recorded men.
If NATO members are welcome to support terrorism, violate basic human rights, and attempt to transition from a democracy to a dictatorship, any association with the organization is discrediting to all members. Offering visa free travel to such a destabilizing, duplicitous and oppressive society reveals how truly lost the bizarre, self destructive Europe really is. America will need watch and make certian the same mistakes are not made here.