Trump Calls Erdogan To Congratulate Him On Winning Referendum Giving Him Virtually Dictatorial Powers

donald_trump_president-elect_portrait_cropped220px-Recep_Tayyip_ErdoganThe world has condemned the referendum that narrowly gave near dictatorial powers to Turkish President ­Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Not only was the government accused of tampering with the close results, but the referendum represents the final demise of democracy in Turkey.  Erdogan is also responsible for destroying the separation of church and state.  However, Erdogan did get one call of congratulations . . . from the President of the United States.

In addition to Trump, Erdogan received another congratulatory call from Vladimir Putin.

We have followed the rapid destruction of the secular government and civil liberties in Turkey under the authoritarian rule of Erdogan. Erdogan used the recent failed coup to push his effort to create a de facto Islamic regime and to complete his work in arresting his critics, including forcing the resignation of thousands of secular academics, and suspending all civil liberties in a proclaimed state of emergency. Recently, Erdogan threatened the United States that he wants his greatest critic, US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, delivered to him and that a failure to yield to his demands would be a “big mistake.”  Now, he has ordered the round up of journalists despite the fact that journalists helped him stay in power during the coup by bravely continuing to broadcast during the coup.  In addition, his government is now arresting people who express doubt (with many internationally) about the coup.  Erdogan has been known to use trumped up events to expand his power and many believe that he is not only using the coup as an excuse but engineered the coup.  What is clear is that he has used the coup attempt to arrest dozens of journalists and thousands of opponents and critics.

Trump discussed the U.S. operations in Syria and the call reflected how important Turkey is to the United States — a strategic arrangement that Erdogan knows will forgive his converting one of the few secular democracies in the Muslim world into an Islamically based dictatorship.

While President Trump congratulated the authoritarian leader, the State Department was expressing reservations over irregularities in the close vote — concerns also raised by our European allies.  The call is likely to go over poorly with millions of Turks who are continuing to fight for democracy, free speech, and the free press — all rights curtailed by Erdogan.

72 thoughts on “Trump Calls Erdogan To Congratulate Him On Winning Referendum Giving Him Virtually Dictatorial Powers”

  1. There are no good countries in the Middle East or Africa. Islam is a cult and Muslims should be banned from entering this country. Religious freedom? What other religion basically radicalizes members and where so many of its leaders teach that any non Muslim is slaves or infidels who must be killed. Wake up stupid leftists. I love the 1st Amendment as much as anyone but spare me the religion of peace bs. Its a cult of lunatics. Its a shame the Crusades didnt wipe it out like it should have.

    1. Also spare me the comparison to Hitler and the Jews. Because that just demonstrates you are uneducated on the entire subject.

      Jews are an ethnic group not a religion. There is the Jewish faith but that is the religion of the majority of Jewish people. There are many atheist Jews or even Jews for Jesus. You cannot be an atheist Muslim. Mulsims are not a race or ethnic group. Its a religious cult.

    2. There are no good countries in the Middle East or Africa. I

      Get back to us when you can locate one or the other on a map.

    1. Don’t hold back, Jill. Let’s hear from James Fetzer.

  2. Am I the only one who thinks Erdogan looks a lot like Walt Disney?

  3. USA – Building and Encouraging Dictatorships. We’re Number One! We Do It Best.

    Trump Calls Erdogan To Congratulate Him On Winning Referendum Giving Him Virtually Dictatorial Powers

    BTW, for those challenged by the title of this post, “Referendum” does not spell “Dictatorship.” Trump called Erdogan to congratulate him on the recent Referendum, NOT on his “dictatorship.”

    True, the so called referendum (snicker) gave him dictatorial powers. And true, Trump’s call was totally appropriate for a newly minted puppet of the US deep state, but technically, Trump did not, repeat NOT, congratulate Erdogan on his dictatorship.

    No doubt one the most sincere calls of envy and admiration Trump, or any recent US President, has made while in office.

    1. USA – Building and Encouraging Dictatorships. We’re Number One! We Do It Best.

      We do neither. Authoritarian rule is the default state in the Near East, North Africa, and Central Asia. That’s not a function of American policy and it’s not likely to change any time soon.

      Given time and diligent effort, you and Jill might between you manage a political judgment which is neither stupid nor self-aggrandizing. You’re just not there yet.

      1. Hmmm, this isn’t posting. Let’s see if it will now.

        WOW, I’m so glad this never happened! The 1953 Iranian coup d’état, known in Iran as the 28 Mordad coup (Persian: کودتای ۲۸ مرداد‎‎), was the overthrow of the democratically elected Prime Minister Mohammad Mosaddegh in favour of strengthening the monarchical rule of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi on 19 August 1953, orchestrated by the United Kingdom (under the name “Operation Boot”) and the United States (under the
        name TPWOW,état

        It was all a bad dream and the Iranians woke up to find their democratically elected leader was still in place and nothing bad happened at all. AMAZING! I guess they Iranians just weren’t there yet (along with a whole bunch of other people whose nations have been dictatored by the US).

      2. Like totally! Iran didn’t happen! Iranians are so not there yet!!!!

        Darren, I have a comment that just won’t post on the removal of the democratically elected leader of Iran by the UK and the US. Are you able to find it? It just won’t post.


        1. Like totally! Iran didn’t happen! Iranians are so not there yet!!!!

          Jill’s idea of ‘democracy’ is Mohammed Mossadegh’s dictatorship. Jill also fancies that a multi-ethnic state where 10% of the population is literate is a sterling candidate for parliamentary government. Because Jill’s as dumb as she is opinionated.

          1. You know DDS,

            I really wish you were a person who would engage with people in an honest manner. You claimed that BB and I were wrong to state the US had brought about dictatorships. I showed you just one example of the US doing exactly that and linked to the information so anyone could read about it. There are many other examples of the US installing brutal dictatorships and anyone can find that out for themselves.

            Instead of grappling with the issue at hand, you resort to silly name calling. There are so many people on this blog who have differing opinions. They know about lots of things that other people don’t know. It is a pleasure to hear from them. There are no personal attacks. No crap. Just sincere statements of their thoughts and ideas along with actual information.

            You seem like a person who just won’t engage in honest discussion over differences of both opinion or fact. Too bad. I leave you to your way of doing things.

            1. I showed you just one example of the US doing exactly that

              You did nothing of the kind, Jill. You fancy you did because you don’t know any actual history and traffick in talking points from The Nation. Parliamentary government was kaput in Iran and it imploded in every other Near Eastern country between 1949 and 1963 bar Cyprus, Israel, and Lebanon, none of which bear the slightest resemblance to Iran.

              It takes a hell of a lot of brass for you to question anyone’s integrity Jill.

  4. The fate of Turkey is tragic. Istanbul used to be a chic tourist destination. As long as you didn’t visit the inside of a Turkish prison, or bring up Armenians, you’d have a grand time.

    We have always looked the other way to maintain our alliances with Turkey and Saudi Arabia. We refuse to state the obvious: that Turkey engaged in the genocide of the Christian Armenians, because we did not want to lose what scant good will we can find in the ME.

    However, if the world ever develops a reliable, clean, renewable, and affordable (without subsidies) energy alternative to fossil fuels, the ME will lose the revenue it uses to fund terrorism. It will lose its importance and perhaps finally we can vote with our dollars on how these regimes behave.

    Trump’s call reaffirming our ties with Turkey was a mistake. True, Turkey has been threatening to unleash thousands of Syrian refugees in Europe. But is this relationship worth it?

    1. Istanbul used to be a chic tourist destination.

      1914 was a long time ago. The place isn’t any more affluent than Mexico. It’s safer than Latin America but comparatively crime-ridden next to most places in the Near East, North Africa, and Central Asia. It’s had successive waves of political violence in this century, with the southeast spending considerable spans of time under martial law.

      1. My father used to travel to Istanbul for our government on occasion, and I’ve had friends who enjoyed going there. One of my favorite necklaces is from Turkey. Granted, the last time they went, for an anniversary, was when the most recent uprising occurred. A kind shopkeeper got them off the street, away from the tear gas, and down into his basement, I believe it was.

        I don’t know…there are a lot of diseases in North Africa. Not interested in Sudan but I did always want to see Morocco.

    2. KarenS – have you read “Birds without Wings”? One of the best novels I’ve read in the last decade. From Wiki:

      “Birds Without Wings is a novel by Louis de Bernières, written in 2004. Narrated by various characters, it tells the tragic love story of Philothei and Ibrahim. It also chronicles the rise of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the ‘Father of the Turkish Nation’. The overarching theme of the story covers the impact of religious intolerance, over-zealous nationalism, and the war that often results. The characters are unwittingly caught up in historical tides outside of their control.”

      The book’s title is taken from a saying by one of the characters, Iskander the Potter, ‘Man is a bird without wings, and a bird is a man without sorrows.'”

      1. Thanks for the book recommendation. I’ll have to check it out. And what a poignant saying.

      1. Ralph–What would you expect from a hardware store in the “People’s Republic of Vermont”?

    1. Boycott that hardware store. Is there anything these days that has not become politicized?

    2. Is he in the hardware business or not? Is this some Producers type scam where he has to lose money for tax reasons?

  5. On what demented and quite moronic level does this headline make any sense? Turkey is still in NATO, right? Doesn’t the United States have a strategic interest in that part of the world, especially our Incirlik airbase? How intellectually bankrupt do you have to be to believe ANY US President would call ANY world leader to congratulate them on their “dictatorship”? In an environment where Trump and his administration cannot even celebrate Easter without some concocted controversy, IF this were true, the evidence would have been reported EVERYWHERE.

    Wow! Just wow.

    1. Obama’s pen pal was the Iranian Ayatollah, Obama gave Iran billions to support terrorism, Obama decreased sanctions and allowed Iran to shore up its economy, and Obama gave Iran a pathway to a nuclear bomb. Yet, people are worried because of Trump’s congratulatory call to Erdogan? Such hypocrisy! American Presidents, both Democrat and Republican, have a long history of backing incumbent repressive leaders for reasons involving perceived U.S. interests. Whether it is the case or not, Trump may have felt it was in the U.S. interest for him to congratulate Erdogan.

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