Israel to Pay a Price
Prime Minister Recep Erdogan of Turkey used his visit to Egypt on Monday to further "cement” his position as the new leader of the Sunni Arab world with a blistering attack against Israel.
Continuing his anti-Israeli campaign, Erdogan told a meeting of the 22-member Arab League in Cairo that Israel had to "pay a price for its aggression and crimes,” stoking the flames higher regarding a military confrontation between his country and the Jewish state.
Last week, the Turkish government expelled the Israeli ambassador and cut all military ties with the country it had enjoyed close relations with for many years.
In his anti-Israel message in Cairo, Erdogan reminded Egyptians that Israeli forces had recently killed five Egyptian policemen, inflaming what was already an emotional issue in Egypt as well as the anti-Israeli feeling that runs deep in some segments of Egyptian society.
With such a large anti-Israeli audience in Egypt, some members of which had recently attacked the Israeli embassy, it is not surprising Erdogan played the Palestinian card again.
Besides calling for the end of the Israeli blockade of Gaza, he also urged the countries present at the Arab League meeting to support the Palestinians’ bid for statehood next month at the UN. He called their support "an obligation.”
Debka has an interesting update as related to Turkey's growing threat to Israel:
Israeli-Greek defense pact invoked versus Turkish naval and air movements
Israel and Greece have invoked the mutual defense pact they signed secretly only 12 days ago in the light of heavy Turkish sea and air movements in the eastern Mediterranean.
The Greek Prime Minister added to the information recorded so far on Turkish fleet movements in the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas.
He was particularly concerned by the observation flights suddenly increased in the past 48 hours over the Greek island of Kastelorizo in the southeast Mediterranean just two kilometers from the Turkish coast. Those flights are escorted by Turkish combat jets.
Athens fears a Turkish attack on the island, whose population is fewer than 1,000, and an attempt to damage or seize it.
Israel suspects that a Turkish attack on the Greek island will be the signal for Turkish military aggression against its oil and gas platforms located in the Mediterranean between Israel and Cyprus.
Indeed. This could represent Turkey's efforts to establish a staging area for subsequent attacks which would involve Israel's new oil and gas finds and the so-called "disputed borders" at sea.
Papandreou said the Turks are capable of surprise attacks on additional Greek islands near the Turkish coast.
Turkey also backs Lebanon's complaint that Israel is robbing it of its natural resources. Talks between Lebanon and Cyprus to resolve this issue broke down. Beirut refuses any discussion with Israel.
...military sources surmise that in the first stage, Israeli navy and air forces are to be posted at Greek Mediterranean bases. The two intelligence agencies are already sharing input.
This threat covers not only shipping bound for Gaza but also Israel's oil and gas drilling platforms which are more than 60 miles out to sea.
Israeli warships crossing the 12-mile line bounding its territorial waters will be challenged by Turkish warships, which are instructed to approach them to within 100 meters and "disable their weapons."
Welcome to yet another potential tipping point in the powder keg, otherwise known as the Middle East.