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Russia Sees Turkey Through Its Own Lens

As long as Russia-Turkey relations stay calm, Moscow has no comment.
Turkey's Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan (C) speaks with AK Party (AKP) members after an AKP meeting in Ankara June 14, 2013. Erdogan on Friday called on hundreds of protesters occupying central Istanbul's Gezi Park to leave, saying their message had been received by the government after talks aimed at ending two weeks of unrest. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic (TURKEY - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST) - RTX10NQ0

Russia has been observing the unexpected events in Turkey idiosyncratically: through the prism of its own domestic policy. A well-known journalist standing on Taks im Square was the first to tell of how “Dismiss Putin” was among the slogans written on the Square’s asphalt surface, seemingly by a detractor of the Russian government living in Turkey who went the extra mile. A left-leaning female politician who writes scathing op-eds, titled a recent article “Russians, Learn Turkish.” She discerned namely a leftist-oriented socialist revolution in the protests unfolding in Istanbul, even though people with obviously very contrasting views have united against Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Aleksandr Dugin, a well-known conservative and supporter of what Eurasia stands for, voiced his stance, in what turned out to be the most surprising of them all, as being fundamentally anti-revolutionary, believing the West and NATO incite revolutions aimed at Russia and Eurasianism. Dugin is convinced that the founder of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, was a true Eurasianist, while Erdogan, in dismantling Ataturk’s legacy, is a minion of the hostile Atlantic community, even though he masks it with Islamic rhetoric.

Dugin writes: “Sooner or later Moscow has to master the geopolitical ABCs and take action according to our fundamental long-term and objective national interests. Thus, we should support a people’s uprising in Turkey. Don’t take it personally, Mr. Erodgan, what goes around, comes around.” His supporters from the Eurasian movement even attempted to picket the Turkish Embassy in Moscow, but the police got in their way.

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