This week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared victory in his country’s historic constitutional referendum. The changes to be set in motion after the the referendum place almost all power in the president’s hands, allowing him to stay in office for another 15 years. Critics fear Turkey will lurch from a democracy toward dictatorship—and fast.
This should be scary news for the United States.
Erdogan spews anti-American rhetoric, ISIS organizes within Turkey’s borders, its military is the second biggest in the NATO alliance, and 50 to 90 atomic weapons are located at Incirlik. President Donald Trump’s State Department even noted the irregularities in the incredibly close election.
Still, on Monday, Trump congratulated Erdogan on his win.
“President Donald J. Trump spoke today with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of Turkey to congratulate him on his recent referendum victory and to discuss the United States’ action in response to the Syrian regime’s use of chemical weapons on April 4th,” the White House said in a statement.
If you’re surprised at the president’s support, the Internet is not.
Sure, Trump’s first national security adviser admitted to lobbying in Turkey, but take a look: In 2012, First Daughter Ivanka Trump, queen of saying a lot about nothing at all, tweeted her appreciation of the Turkish president’s ties to the family business:
Lest you forget, it was revealed today that Ivanka’s clothing company also received Chinese trademarks on the same day that she met with Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Interesting. Veeery interesting.