“Like 9/11 for Turkey”

What’s Turkish for chutzpah?

With anger and sarcasm, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu lashed out Tuesday at Israel’s attack on a Gaza aid flotilla and by extension the Obama administration’s reluctance to immediately condemn the assault that left at least nine civilians dead.

“Psychologically, this attack is like 9/11 for Turkey,” Davutoglu told reporters over breakfast in Washington before going to the State Department to meet with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

From The Washington Post (Via Michael Totten)

A letter from Bibi

This is a wishful-thinking letter from Bibi to Obama, courtesy of Yaacov Lozowick (it’s his wishful thinking):

Israel recognizes that the blockade of Gaza is causing human suffering, and wishes to end it as soon as possible. Since there are no Israeli forces or citizens in Gaza, and the border between it and Israel is undisputed, all that remains for Israel to fully desist from any sort of intervention in the lives of the Gazans is that they not interfere in the lives of Israelis. This means they must return the single Israeli still in Gaza, Gilad Shalit; they must desist from any form of aggression against Israel; and they must pay the bill for whatever services they receive from Israel such as electricity or medical bills of Gazan citizens. Should these terms be met, the blockade will be lifted completely and immediately.

Israel now turns to the United States, to Turkey, and to the United Nations. We hereby announce that it is our urgent wish to lift the blockade from Gaza so as to enable the Gazans to live their lives independently of us. We will take this measure as soon as you can assure us of the following:

1. There will be no attacks from Gaza on Israel.
2. Imports of aggressive weapons into Gaza will not happen.
3. Gilad Shalit has returned to his family.

Israel has decided that Gaza is the test for the continuation of the peace process. Should the international community in collaboration with the Palestinians be able to deliver the three simple conditions described above, Israel will be eager to move forward in negotiations regarding the West Bank. If these three simple conditions cannot be met by the Palestinians, or cannot be guaranteed by the US, Turkey and the United Nations, how can Israel lower its defensive abilities on the West Bank?

The onus is now on you: Gazans, the United States, Turkey, and the United Nations. Please hurry, since the populace of Gaza is suffering, and we wish to end our part of that suffering as soon as possible.

Flotilla and “Women”

While the Flotilla Incident was happening I was busy reading the Qur’an. Since the waters are still murky around Gaza I’ll refrain from commenting. It’s going to be a long week.

I’m on the chapter called “Women”, ostensibly because there are passages of Leviticus-like lawgiving on the the treatment of women interspersed among further injunctions to “kill them wherever you find them.” Here is to be found a brilliant commandment to convert the unbelievers on penalty of death:

Do not take them for friends until they emigrate in the cause of God. If they refuse, sieze them and kill them wherever you find them, and do not take them as friend or ally, etc…

It’s not much worse than much of Deuteronomy, really, except that it was written a thousand or so years later. So Muhammad no longer has the excuse of antiquity for this kind of barbarism.