December 03, 2009

Beware the winds of December While America has been absorbed by the Afghan election imbroglio, a less-noticed event slid into place in the Middle East. It is less dramatic than President Hamid Karzai’s near removal; but this event tilts the strategic balance: Turkey finally shrugged off its United States straight-jacket; stared past any beckoning European Union membership; and has fixed its eyes toward its former Ottoman Asian and Middle Eastern neighbors. Turkey did not make this shift merely to snub the West; but it does reflect Turkey’s discomfort and frustration with US and EU policy - as well as resonate more closely with the Islamic renaissance that has been taking place within Turkey. This “release” of Turkish policy towards a new direction - if successful - can be as significant as the destruction of Iraq and the implosion of Soviet power was, 20 years ago, in “releasing” Iran to emerge as one of the pre-eminent powers in the region. In the past months, a spate of new agreements have been signed by Turkey with Iraq, Iran, Syria and Armenia, which suggest not just a nascent commonality of political vision with Iraq, Iran and Syria, but more importantly, it reflects a joint economic interest - the northern tier of Middle East states are in line to become the principal suppliers of natural gas to Europe - thus displacing Russia as the dominant purveyor of gas to central Europe. In short, the prospective Nabucco gas pipeline to central Europe may gradually eclipse the energy primacy of Saudi oil.


I'm a watchman for Christ, looking on the horizon in expectation for the fulfillment of God's Word.

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