Monday, July 18, 2016

Turkey and the flight ban

As you all been following the recent events in Turkey, I will not go into those details but I completely support a complete ban on all civilian air transit through Turkish airspace pending a resolution of the crisis.

A nation which cannot maintain the security of the airspace over its capital territory cannot possibly claim to be able to secure its civilian air corridors.

A nation where a military flight can take off with live munitions without the proper release papers being signed and then proceed to penetrate protected airspace and attack major national infrastructure is in no shape to honor its commitments to global aviation security.

Some view the FAA position on Turkey as extreme. I do not.

I feel they did the right thing, and it should have been done even faster.

At the instant there was sign of a coup an  immediate ground stop should have gone into effect and all flights transiting Turkish airspace should have landed or redirected.

I feel the ban should remain in effect until external observers from various security agencies consistently report that all Surface to Air and Air to Air weapons systems are being correctly managed by Turkish military personnel.

Doing anything else simply invites another MH-17 type disaster.

There are three main sources of transit revenue in Turkey

1) NATO money for military transit and hosting.
2) Kurdish drug revenue going West.
3) ONG revenue (some from Baku-Tblisi -Ceyhan and some from ISIS-oil).

My guess is that with the fall of the ISIS Caliphate - the revenue stream there has come under pressure and that is the fissure we are seeing right now.

This is way deeper than anything we are seeing anywhere.

This is way off the charts compared to the situation in France.

We are watching a modern secular democratic state critical to global security come apart at the seams.


At 8:32 PM, Blogger Ralphy said...

it's transforming from a psuedo attaturk secular state to a full on islamist state. not everybody is happy in the military about it. thus, the purges of the officer corps and the juduciary by islamist erdogan. it's been going on for a number of years.

At 4:45 AM, Blogger maverick said...

Wurzburg attack:

Does having a self-made ISIS flag *really* constitute a material link to ISIS?

I ask this for two reasons -

1) Apparently French authorities are saying that a single tweet to as yet unknown people is sufficient grounds to justify the radicalization claim.

2) If we use this kind of criteria to define radicalization, we will have to flag every little thing.

There is such a thing as setting the thresholds too low for meaningful threat discrimination. The false positives will overwhelm the entire intelligence system - Human and AI will be completely overpowered by setting the threshold too low.

At 5:02 AM, Blogger maverick said...

I don't believe any of the Islamist labeling. I think Ergodan consolidated his power by making an alliance with the religious groups - that is something every potentate does in a country with a large Islamic population. As with all such marriages of convenience (seen over and over again in Pakistan) - the ruler then lets power go to his head and ends up in a very brutal fight with the very same religious groups who backed him in the first place.

I am assuming that all this blame-dropping on Fethullah Gulen and the "shutdown" of Incirlik AFB is all a fancy way of Ergodan bringing pressure on the US to support his behavior.

I can't say it is going to work the way he wants it to.

If the mere words of Fethullah Gulen can inspire an armed insurrection inside Turkey, then imagine what rounding up thousands of people and torturing them in your prisons is going to do.

It is going to turn a small spark into a blazing inferno.

I fear we are at the beginning of something really nasty.

I foolishly hoped that after the coup Ergodan would take the hint and step down. But as usual - it doesn't seem like he is used to.

Score one for Pervez Musharraf - he was definitely smarter than Ergodan.

At 8:46 AM, Blogger maverick said...

If ISIS wants to lay claim to an attack - this is what I would need before I believed them

1) A martyrdom video that shows the attacker describing in detail why and how they will carry out the attack. I want to see a video where they explain to their own family why they are preparing to take this action on the behest of IS.

2) A set of videos going back through the attackers training period where the attacker repeatedly indicates a serious commitment to the attack.

3) A set of communication documents showing contact between the attacker and his IS handlers.

4) Footage that is clearly attributable only to IS camera coverage of the event.

5) A series of fatwas from religious leaders sympathetic to IS encouraging the exact mode of attack that has occurred.

Unless I see all this - I will have great difficulty believing IS claims.

At 9:25 PM, Blogger Ralphy said...

the electricity is still shutoff at Incirlik as it is at other airbases. supposedly this is to confound any future coup plotters.

the US is using its own emergency resources to power radar and runway lights in order to maintain Syria anti ISIS flight ops. but none for living quarters and food prep. tough duty for the air force.

erdogan has declared a three month state of emergency.

none of his f-16's came to his rescue. only one squadron of old f-4's remained loyal. and they had no air to air capability.

At 4:41 AM, Blogger maverick said...

I don't think Ergodan is taking the hint.

Like so many others before him, he has fallen into the trap of believing his own publicity about what really happened there.

He thinks he can punish the people that rose up against him. He doesn't get the fact that he doesn't have nearly the support he thinks he does and that when his ridiculous attempt to destroy his enemies fails - they will do to him what Qaddafi's opponents did to him.

No one has the resources to stabilize a nation the size of Turkey.

If this comes to boil (as it seems like it is going to) - there will total hell to pay. Think of all that has gone down in Syria and multiply that by a factor of 10 - that is what will happen in Turkey.

At 6:31 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

I understand the purging of the military under the circumstances but also the judiciary and the state council?

If I was a Turkish citizen I would be very concerned about erdogan's power aggrandisement.

At 6:36 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

truly the muslims have no love for democracy. a bigoted statement but it's just not there. erdogan has been in power over 10 years.

At 4:55 AM, Blogger maverick said...

>> "Muslims have no love for democracy".

I wouldn't call it bigoted but I would say that is an oversimplification.

A more precise statement would be that the Muslim religious elite have conceptual difficulty with democratic ideas and since so much of the support infrastructure in Islamic societies is still in the hands of religious institutions, these elites hold a disproportionate influence on Muslim populations.

Democracy is a difficult concept for some Muslim religious leaders because for thousands of years they have been supported despots who brought stability to their societies. This is a formula that has worked well too many times in the past and people can't understand why it is failing today.

Traditionally the accountability mechanisms have run via the religious elite. So when the idea of direct accountability is posed, elite feel a certain loss of status.

In many places these religious elite would have gladly accepted democracy had it not been for the "Not Invented Here" syndrome. Most religious leaders don't want to be seen as importing concepts from somewhere else but rather creating their own ideas.

The unfortunate reality that so many people don't realize is that in Muslim countries there are people (commoners and religious leaders) who strongly believe in democratic ideals and direct accountability of rulers, but they find themselves struggling against entrenched interest groups that are intent on keeping the status quo. In a handful of places their voices are heard clearly but in most parts of the Muslim world - these voices for change - are suppressed and these nations living in a medieval and feudal reality that is several hundred years behind the world.

In Turkey - I really don't understand where all this support for Ergodan is coming from.

Are people really supporting Ergodan or are they merely opposing a coup?

Are all these supporters of Ergodan loyal to some religious leaders? or are they common Turks who want to see the military out of politics?

I have never understood why so many businessmen in Istanbul support Ergodan. What investment opportunities has he promised them that makes him so popular with them?

All I see are buildings going up - but no one is inside these buildings? so what possible successful investment could we have in such a place?

At 5:56 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

it seems that India sending 100 tanks to the border has caught the Chinese attention, they are now worried about business opportunities in that as export more goods to India.

At 6:00 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

the secular party in Turkey opposed the coup but now is worried about erdogan's consolidation of power.......too late for that I suppose.

At 7:28 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

the kashmiris (is there such a thing?) are using facebook and social media in their struggle against India. it seems that 70% of the savages now have access.

does not bode well for democracy.....

At 7:39 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

what is the long term result of giving medieval society access to modern technology. many years ago it was postulated that progress would ensue. now, I am not so sure. they all have access to ak-47's and cell phones and they are still as blood thirsty as superstitious savages as they have proven to be.

At 1:12 PM, Blogger Ralphy said...

this news comes from the truth is stranger than fiction section.

China levies anti dumping tax on electric steel imports from the EU, Japan and S. Korea.

so far, no action against the US which has put an import tax of 600% on Chinese imports of steel.

At 7:55 AM, Blogger maverick said...

> Kashmiris and whatsapp.

I think there is a silver lining.

With a medium that is completely controlled by the people, news of *all* atrocities will come out and public opinion will quickly swing towards law and order improvement.

Yes for a period it will look like this is working against India's security forces, but ultimately public distaste with extremist violence will surface with the same enormity as it did against any perceived excesses by Indian security forces.

At 7:56 AM, Blogger maverick said...

> what is the long term result of giving medieval society access to modern technology.

Well - it should behave something like Europe in the early 19th century.

A sudden spike in the violence levels as people come to grips with the fact that modern technology and feudal mindsets only produce catastrophically high levels of murder.

At 8:06 AM, Blogger maverick said...

Re Ansbach.

Goes to show - the only defense against a suicide bomber is *good* perimeter security.

How did he get access to a device?

Re Reutlingen

Sorry - there is no defense against a sudden attack like that with any weapon.

At 8:23 AM, Blogger maverick said...

> Tanks along the India-China border.

The logistics have improved.

They have moved light tanks up there before - the problem is keeping the supply chain up so that maneuver and training is possible.

Terrain is quite adverse and maintaining a regiment is expensive.

If they have moved 5 squadrons up there, it will be interesting to see how they keep the supply chain going.

At 6:07 AM, Blogger maverick said...

Given the upsurge in mass killings in places where there usually aren't as many - why does one get the feeling that a program designed to produce Manchurian candidates has lost control of its assets?

At 7:37 AM, Blogger Ralphy said...

if a normally elected politician can't stop it, then the people will find one who will. can a free democracy survive such in such savagery?

At 2:39 PM, Blogger Ralphy said...

the major source of the world's problems? Technology.

and you know what? I think I agree with him.

At 4:21 AM, Blogger maverick said...

>> the major source of the world's problems? Technology.

Hmm.. I feel like that has been true since Man discovered fire.


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