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Turkey - The Speech Delivered by Mr. Ali Babacan

Turkey views

Fergana Valley exports revolutions for “democracy”

US plans to topple Soviet time rulers make Uzbekistan centre of struggle

The background to Fergana agitations from Turkey’s angle

Cultural and social relations with the new republics

Muhammed Salih becomes the Americans’ bomb to undermine cooperation

President Islam Kerimov closely escaped death

Muhammed Salih becomes the Americans’ bomb to undermine cooperation

Even before the disintegration of the Soviet Union, there were overtly pro-American politicians working in the Soviet dictatorship and their political struggle with the Soviet time rulers has become the most important factor in shaping the futures of these new States as well as their relations with Turkey.

In Azerbaijan, one of these non-communist politicians, Abulfaz Elchibey became the first president with the Turkish PM Suleyman Demirel’s support over the Azeri TV. However Elchibey’s performance in office was a total disaster for his country and Turkey’s brotherhood with the Turkish world. He adopted an extremist policy devoid of any wisdom in attempting to immediately replace the Soviet bases and troops by the American ones. While ignoring any suggestions of rationale from Ankara he began to talk of reunifying the two Azerbaijan communities and thus alarming both Moscow and Tehran. He called Uzbeks “koyun millet” (sheep nation) and caused Kerimov’s cancelling Baku-Tashkent flights. The result was very painful for the Azerbaijan nation which lost one-third of its lands to Armenia with overt Russian military support. PM Demirel and FM Mesut Yilmaz underhandedly joined hands with the Russians, much to Washington’s protests, and toppled Elchibey. A former KGB Chief Haydar Aliyev replaced him in June 1993 and his son Ilham Aliyev has been in power since his death two years ago.

Leaving aside these Azeri stories which already exist in previous Pulse issues, it should be noted that similar things were taking place in other Turkic republics with Uzbekistan and the Uzbek opposition leader Muhammed Salih at their centre.

Salih was one of the Soviet time politicians who, along with Elchibey joined the “Movement of Democracy and Independence” aimed at disintegrating the USSR during the Perestroika and Glasnost democratization periods. Muhammed Salih’s activities backed up by George Soros or other CIA funds during the last years of the Soviet Union and the first decades of the new Turkic States were the determining factor in Turkey’s relations with these countries, because the pro-American wing of the extreme nationalist MNP and its youth organizations and sometimes the Turkish Executive force (I don’t say “the Turkish Government” because in the American English it is equal to what we call in Turkey “The Turkish State” – V.U) were involved in this subversion. A typical example of this intolerable fact is PM Tansu Ciller’s attempt to get President Haydar Aliyev killed in March 1994 and President Demirel’s fouling it by informing Aliyev at an international conference in Copenhagen, as soon as the Turkish State learnt of this unauthorized coup from the relevant MIT agent’s informing of it to MIT from Azerbaijan at the last minute.

Thus the Turkish State learnt that Russia and the new Turkic States, especially President Kerimov’s Uzbekistan, were quite right about their complaints of Turkish involvements in terrorist agitations in Chechnya, Uzbekistan and others. In return, Moscow, Tashkent and other capitals concerned also learnt that it was not the Turkish State that was doing it, but some American agents infiltrated in the Turkish Government were, as Tansu Ciller’s abortive plot to Aliyev through the MHP’s blindly pro-American flank constituted a typical example.

Muhammed Salih, a worldwide poet and scholar of the Turkish world, was being used as the pivot of all this American plans for disintegrating the present Russian Federation after the collapse of the USSR. Salih competed with Islam Kerimov for Uzbekistan’s leadership even before independence and lost all elections with allegations of rigging by pro-Russian forces. The last one of this competition was at the first presidential election of Uzbekistan in December 1991. According to pro-American sources, the Uzbek State Radio first announced that Salih had received 31% of the total votes, but it was later reduced to 15% and then to 12.7%, proving the manipulation of the election results by the pro-Kremlin forces. Still Muhammed Salih entered Parliament as the chairman of the opposition “ERK Democratic Party” whose slogan was the Turkic poet Cholpan’s famous words, “Zincir giyme, Boyun eyme ki sen de hur dogdun” (Don’t put on chains, don’t succumb; you too were born free). On 2 July 1992 Muhammed Salih resigned from Parliament and in April 1993 left the country via Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan with the help of Turkish MHP militants along with others. He entered Turkey with false documents as a refugee from Turkmenistan. President Turgut Ozal, who had long become a blindly pro-American politician, having fallen into his family members’ corruption quagmire, was to receive him in Ankara at 1700 hrs on 17 April 1993. When Muhammed Salih landed at Ankara airport from Istanbul with his MHP or other ultra nationalist escorts, he learnt that President Ozal had “died of a heart attack” a few hours before. Mrs Ozal would years later claim that Ozal had not died naturally; he had been killed like President Kennedy.