CNN Europe reports that Iraq is warning Turkey against allowing the US to use Incirlik Air Base as a staging point should the US decide to attack Iraq. In a statement remarkable for its blinding obviousness, Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz said Turkey will "absolutely not" be considered a friend of Iraq if it lets the United States use its air bases for an attack on Baghdad.
The article also discusses Turkey's weak economy and its difficulties with Kurdish rebels in the area bordering on Iraq, but fails to note the fragility of Prime Minister Ecevit's government, which is the real issue affecting Turkey's view on the war. While it appears (from his public statements) that Turkey opposes the attack, it is very likely that they will allow the US to use the base. While it is true that in the short term the Turkish economy might suffer more, it is likely that a regime change in Iraq will also result in the removal of trade sanctions against Iraq, and the Turks would be in a position to enjoy the fruits of a rejuvenated Iraqi economy through trade agreements.
posted on October 01, 2002 05:52 PM