President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has made "helping the oppressed of the world" a pillar of Turkish foreign policy.
If Turkey travels to the other end of the world with all its resources and assets, it is to bring peace, security and salvation to a group of oppressed people.
That is why when the Muslims of Myanmar were subjected to massacres and one million fled the country to Bangladesh, Turkey was on hand to help the oppressed. So much so that when Bangladesh was reluctant to receive the refugees fleeing Myanmar, Turkey stepped in and assured the government of Bangladesh that it would finance the up-keep of these oppressed people. First lady Emine Erdoğan headed a high powered Turkish delegation to rush aid to the Muslims of Myanmar, she visited the refugee camps in Bangladesh and embraced children and women. The world applauded.
Turkey has always brought affection and compassion when its forces traveled thousands of kilometers to other lands… Isn't it a fact that Turkish soldiers in the NATO contingency are held in high esteem in the streets of Afghanistan and even other soldiers of Western countries wear Turkish badges when they are roaming in the streets? With the bonds of affection Turkish soldiers have established with the Afghan people, the people see us as saviors and not occupiers.
But can you say the same for the Americans troops who also have traveled thousands of kilometers to Afghanistan and are part of the NATO force? The common man in the streets of Afghanistan feels open enmity towards the American contingency as they use their unmanned aerial vehicles to attack so-called Afghan terrorists but end up massacring scores of civilians. All that the Americans have brought to Afghanistan has been blood, sweat and tears.
The American forces have traveled thousands of kilometers to conduct military operations against Daesh terrorists in Iraq and Syria. But instead of bringing security, justice and tranquility, all they have done is burn cities and towns to the ground and again kill innocent civilians claiming mishaps in the name of "friendly fire." Look what happened in Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria.
In Mosul Americans helped the Iraqi Army capture the city and push out Daesh but left the city in shambles. Again American war planes bombed Iraqi civilians.
In Raqqa it was even worse. PKK forces knowingly directed Americans to attack so-called Daesh targets which in fact were civilian settlements. It was a massacre of the Syrian Arabs.
So many people in the region are asking, "Why are the Americans in the Middle East, so far away from their homes, if they are not bringing peace and security?"
Turkey, on the other hand, was involved in Operation Euphrates Shield against Daesh along with the Free Syrian Army. It wiped Daesh away from the area and brought peace and tranquility to Jarablus and al-Bab along with dozens of other settlements. Today these settlements have turned into a safe haven for all Syrians and 100 migrants who fled to Turkey are now back in their homes enjoying tranquility.
Now Turkey is conducting Operation Olive Branch to clean up the PKK from the Afrin area in northern Syria as these terrorists posed a security risk for our country. Once the operation is over Afrin will be turned over to the Syrians who are the rightful owners of those lands.
In both Afrin and during Operation Euphrates Shield, Turkey took extreme care so that the local population and their homes were not devastated. This is what Turkey does and this is what others should also do…
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