web analytics
August 3, 2015 / 18 Av, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


Bi-Partisan Letter to Erdogan: Anti-Zionism Comment Unacceptable

A phalanx of world leaders representing the US and the EU have condemned Erdogan's hostile remark about Zionism as outrageous, offensive and unacceptable.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Prime Minister of Turkey.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Photo Credit: E.T. Studhalter/World Economic Forum

Eighty-nine members of the U.S. congress sent a letter to Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan, expressing their “grave disappointment” over statements he made at the United Nations sponsored Alliance of Civilizations forum in Vienna last month, “equating Zionism – the foundation of the Jewish State and the movement for Jewish self-determination – with fascism and anti-Semitism and labeling it a ‘crime against humanity.'”

The letter was sent to Erdoğan on Tuesday, March 12.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY) said,“Today, 89 Members of the U.S. Congress are expressing to Prime Minister Erdoğan that his outlandish comment is simply unacceptable. National leaders like Prime Minister Erdoğan cannot be spouting incendiary rhetoric that further threatens unrest in an already perilous region. Zionism is a non-discriminatory affirmation of Jewish nationhood, and the Prime Minister’s comment disparages this noble historical enterprise.”

Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) used similarly strong language in chastising the Turkish head of state. “Prime Minister Erdoğan’s latest comments were outrageous and offensive. Rather than pursuing closer ties with the United States, Europe and Israel, Erdoğan continues to pursue a policy of distance and isolation from the West.  I urge the Prime Minister to apologize for his remarks and chart a better course for the future of the Turkish people.”

The legislators also took pains in their letter to acknowledge Turkey’s historic legacy of tolerance and that it was the first Muslim country to recognize the newly reborn Jewish state in 1949.

“Your nation led the region, and much of the world, in acknowledging the right of the Jewish people to live in peace and security in its national homeland,” they wrote.

While economic relations between Turkey and Israel remain robust, and figures for 2012 even show a sharp increase, the congressional leaders wrote that they “regret the harsh tone adopted by you and senior Turkish officials in the recent past – culminating in the appalling comment” which he made at the Viennese forum.

Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO) said, “Prime Minister Erdoğan simply must retract his statement. His comments were wrong and hurtful, particularly for a national leader. Turkey has a history of religious tolerance and I hope that Prime Minister Erdoğan leads his country back in that direction.”

Twenty European Union parliamentary members, representing 11 nations and five political groups, sent a similar letter to the EU’s foreign policy chief, Lady Catherine Ashton, informing her that they condemn the Turkish Prime Minister’s statements about Israel, and called on her to do the same at the Foreign Affairs Council meeting on March 11.

The EU parliamentarians wrote:

We have heard statements like these before, but what makes this situation even more troubling is that it comes from a leader of a country seeking to join our Union. Thus, we have a further obligation to speak out against these acts, not simply in defense of Israel but in promotion of our core values of tolerance and democracy.

Lady Ashton said that the comments on Zionism attributed to Erdoğan were “unacceptable to the EU, now and forever.”  The European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso told Israeli President Shimon Peres: “We didn’t agree with Mr Erdogan’s statement and we made it clear that we couldn’t agree at all with it.”

Some contend that the Turkish government has already clarified Erdoğan’s statements, but few have been mollified by an explanation, so frequently offered by haters of Israel, that rather than hating Jews, it is just the Jewish State, or the policies of Israel that is hated.

Turkey’s Deputy Premier Bulent Arinc, speaking at a conference at the German Federal Parliamentary conference hall in Berlin on Tuesday, March 5, offered that excuse.

The explanation provided by Arinc, according to the Turkish news outlet TimeTurk, was that “Turkey does not have a problem with Jews, rather, its problem is with the government of the Jewish State.” Arinc went on:

Just as the Israeli government criticized the Turkish government freely in the past, we might have criticized the Israeli government and its officials. And I believe we did it in a very strong manner. But we would not have any thoughts that would confront your faith or challenge the reasons for your existence. We would not utter a word that would hurt you.

Arinc’s remarks came in response, according to Anadolu Agency,  to a call from Michael Friedmann, former German politician and current television host during the conference on “Muslims, Jews and Christians: Peace is possible!”

About the Author: Lori Lowenthal Marcus is the US correspondent for The Jewish Press. She is a recovered lawyer who previously practiced First Amendment law and taught in Philadelphia-area graduate and law schools. You can reach her by email: Lori@JewishPressOnline.com


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

6 Responses to “Bi-Partisan Letter to Erdogan: Anti-Zionism Comment Unacceptable”

  1. Tim Upham says:

    It was inappropriate for him to call Zionism "a crime against humanity," when Turkey will not admit to its crime against humanity. The Armenian Genocide from 1915 to 1922, when 1.5 million Armenians were killed. The first state-sponsored genocide of the 20th century, was definitely a crime against humanity.

  2. Arie's Pragmatic Politics says:

    And yet it didn't stop obama asking the ottomans just this past Thursday to take the lead in forging a peace between the "Zionist fascists" and the palis. The hypocrisy of the administration of the lord and savior is unending.

  3. Charlie Hall says:

    Even Ashton objected? Pigs are flying!

  4. No Erdogan is not against Jews – just Jews that don't know their place in society.

    How dare Jews govern Muslims and not pay Jizya.

  5. Joels Davidi says:

    Even a pig can wear lipstick.

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Israeli soccer players flee  angry Bulgarian fans.
Violent Bulgarian Soccer Fans Chase Israeli Team off the Field [video]
Latest News Stories
Islamic peacher al-Mughrabi at the Al Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount.

The Muslims preacher is a permanent fixture on the Temple Mount to incite Muslims but finally has been arrested.

Israeli soccer players flee  angry Bulgarian fans.

The “friendly” game was cancelled after the fans took over the soccer field.

Yitzhak Rabin (L.) and Yigal Alon in 1949

Late PM Yitzhak Rabin’s granddaughter has announced her launch into politics.

Israeli soldiers deployed at the Gaza security fence shot over the heads of Arabs who had approached the no-go zone Monday, Palestinian Authority media reported. No one was injured. Arabs frequently approached the security fence, usually with intentions to infiltrate into Israel or to carry out a terrorist attack on the spot. Palestinian Authority media […]

Iranian double talk is clear when a top official praises the nuclear deal but warns of no IAEA inspector access to military sites.

President Rouhani tells Iranians his nation has the right to enrich uranium under the new nuclear deal.

Egypt’s Pres. El-Sisi signs law that paves the way to new parliamentary elections.

Israel’s Security Cabinet classifies Duma arson as “terror attack,” creates ministerial counter terror committee.

RJC Demands Obama stop demonizing Jews for opposing the Iran deal.

Arabs and Jews rallied together for co-existence Sunday at the Gush Etzion junction, joined by MK Yair Lapid.

Settlers, Sheikhs, Rabbis and secular politicians came together on Sunday evening for a joint prayer session at the Gush Etzion junction.

Israelis have broken the nation’s record for energy consumption in this week’s heat wave.

The body of missing Israeli back packer Dor Cohen has been found in Georgia.

A 16-year-old girl has died of her wounds after being stabbed at Jerusalem’s Gay Pride Parade.

Officials looked again at the sprouting wildfires after a terror victim memorial was torched in Mt. Hebron.

There is a new kind of arms race that involves producing the most impenetrable virtual fortresses of cybersecurity to resist catastrophic threats.

More Articles from Lori Lowenthal Marcus
U.S. President Barack Obama

RJC Demands Obama stop demonizing Jews for opposing the Iran deal.

Cong. Albio Sires (D-NJ-8)

Cong. Albio Sires of New Jersey is the third Democrat so far to come out against the JCPOA because it won’t bar Iran from becoming a nuclear state

California Democratic Congressman will vote against Iran deal because it fails to stop Iran from becoming a nuclear threshold state.

Kerry justifies keeping Iran deal “side deals” from the American public, while skipping Israel on ME trip.

A poll suggesting American Jews support the Iran deal is flawed, while a new poll reveals the opposite.

Netanyahu called Pollard’s wife over news of his impending release from prison.

12,000 people filled Times Square at the Stop Iran Now rally in NY’s Times Square.

The NYC rally against the Iran deal must show Congress, which must show the world, that Americans don’t support this deal.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/bi-partisan-letter-to-erdogan-anti-zionism-comment-unacceptable/2013/03/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: