The Corner

What Goes Around, Comes Around . . .

After months of increasingly shrill rhetoric from Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan with regard to Israel and Hamas, Israel’s foreign minister has drawn equivalency between Hamas and the PKK, a Turkish (and Iraqi Kurdistan)-based terrorist group which has been fighting to carve out a state in Anatolia for decades. Turkey is upset, saying there is no comparison between the two. But Turkey is wrong: When democracies legitimize terrorist groups, the precedent can be damning.

To be clear, I disagree with Avigdor Lieberman: Israel should stay on the moral high ground and not legitimize terrorism the way Turkey’s current government has. But, as Turkey pursues a realist agenda, it certainly shouldn’t be surprised when a realist agenda is applied to it.

Michael Rubin is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, senior lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Civil-Military Relations, and a senior editor of the Middle East Quarterly.

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