Massenbach-Letter: NEWS 29/03/13

Guten Morgen.

Seit Mai 2012:

Auch an die
Mitglieder des Verteidigungsausschusses
des Deutschen Bundestages.
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Bis jetzt gibt es keine Antwort zu:
Wahlfreiheit zur Landwirtschaftlichen Sozialversicherung ?

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Australia’s phased withdrawal from Afghanistan will involve the closure of a base at Tarin Kowt and
the return of about 1,000 troops by the end of 2013, out of a total of around 1,600.
Press conference transcript external link | News Limited external link.

Massenbach EU – Turkey-Cyprus-Triangle:
Can Gas Save Cyprus? The Long-Term Cost of Frozen Conflicts
Erdogan schätzt „Freundschaft“ mit jüdischem Volk

Last month, iron anti-riot shutters boarded up the street-side windows of the Grande Bretagne hotel ballroom in Athens as fine-suited patriarchs of Greek and Cypriot industry gathered for the annual Athens Energy Forum, hoping that recent discoveries deep beneath the Mediterranean might power them out of austerity budgets and Eurozone bailouts.

But the idea of hydrocarbon salvation in the eastern Mediterranean is wishful thinking. The potential riches remain buried under decades of sterile politics: a lose-lose-lose failure to compromise between Greece, Cyprus and Turkey that will likely keep gas in the ground for much longer than is ever admitted in silver-tongued speeches at the Grande Bretagne.

The underlying reason is this: neither Turkey, nor Greece, nor Cyprus can securely say what belongs to whom. They have snookered themselves with maximalist claims to Exclusive Economic Zones in the Aegean and Mediterranean that cannot be resolved without major compromises. (According to the U.N. Law of the Sea, EEZs can extend up to 200 nautical miles from a country’s coast line; countries usually agree a median line if there is an overlap; islands may or may not allow EEZs to extend much further than a country’s mainland). If they try to drill without these compromises, they will have less reputable partners and higher costs; they will make un-economic development decisions; and they will risk igniting new conflicts.

This impasse is a legacy of old conflicts left unresolved because political elites have long chosen quick political gain over courageous steps towards compromise. The price of nationalist rhetoric over islands and maritime boundaries always seemed insignificant. But these individual actions have accumulated, and the resulting political blockage now gravely threatens core areas of these countries’ independence. Which, paradoxically, is the very reason the elites said they couldn’t compromise in the first place.

In Cyprus, an understandable but too absolute obsession with righting the wrongs of the Turkish invasion of 1974 led to its rejection of the UN’s Annan Plan to reunite the island in 2004. It also fostered a national blindness to the Cypriot elite’s survival tactics – loose bank regulation and risky international dalliances. Development and investment decisions were put off year after year because of unresolved angst about whether a conflict that left 30,000 Turkish troops dividing their capital and occupying the northern third of the island was really a frozen one.

In Cyprus, the real natural gas volumes in the new Aphrodite Field remain unknown. But even if it is 200 billion cubic meters, as claimed, profits could be 20-30 per cent less because of the frozen conflict – which, according to some bank reports, would mean no profits at all. That’s because of limited export options. An LNG plant will cost some $10 billion and face considerable market risks. A pipeline to Greece may cost $15-$20 billion. By contrast, studies have shown (see our report Aphrodite’s Gift: Can Cypriot Gas Power a New Dialogue? and the Peace Research In Oslo report The Cyprus Hydrocarbons Issue: Context, Positions and Future Scenarios) that the most profitable export route is by pipeline to Turkey – a growing market with easy onward access to Greece now and, most probably, Europe soon. But that pipeline cannot be built without a Cyprus settlement.

Failure to resolve Cyprus has forced Turkey, too, to pay a heavy long-term price in damage to its diplomatic image. It has lost EU aid in the past and now the freezing of half its negotiating chapters with the EU. Ankara did give brave support to the Annan Plan in 2004. But this was a late and brief exception to Ankara’s unwillingness to put behind it Turkish Cypriot suffering in the 1960s, and its failure to use its position of overwhelming power to really reach out to Greek Cypriots.

Turkey has other problems too. It is doing exploratory drilling in uncontested territorial Mediterranean waters (within 12 nautical miles of its coast), but beyond that Greek and Cypriot EEZ claims leave it with a very reduced uncontested area, despite the fact that Turkey’s big size gives it one of the coastlines in the eastern Mediterranean.longest

Cypriot vision of eastern Mediterranean exclusive economic zones. CRISIS GROUP/Agnes Blassell

In Greece, politicians’ failure to solve the Aegean Sea nexus of maritime zone disputes has long forced Athens to spend a disproportionate five per cent of its budget on defence – the highest ratio in Europe. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras told executives at the Athens Energy Forum that he is determined to drill. But his options are limited. Drilling due south of Crete would not conflict with Turkish claims (it might clash with Libyan ones, however). But anywhere east of Crete, and almost anywhere in the Aegean Sea, it will confront Turkish claim. And any clash of claims means extra, and possibly prohibitive, costs and risks.

In the Aegean, Turkish officials know perfectly well that Greece’s claim is much stronger than its own (with 2,000 Greek islands dotting that sea). And Greek officials must know that Turkey’s claim in the Mediterranean is much stronger than theirs (since the Greek position is based on a speck of an archipelago 125 miles east of the nearest Greek territory). If the two sides went to the International Court of Justice, the normal arbitration venue, the court would probably balance Greek rights in the Aegean with Turkish rights in the Mediterranean. But Turkish officials say they will never go to court with Greece over this because it would leave unresolved the overlapping Cypriot claim in the Mediterranean. And this claim cannot be dealt with until – you’ve guessed it – the Cyprus problem is settled.

It doesn’t have to be like this. Greece and Turkey started a process of political and commercial normalisation in 1999 that brought out immense good will, new trade and positive energy. A normalisation on Cyprus that would somehow fit the Republic of Cyprus and the self-declared Turkish Republic of North Cyprus into the international system – whether it is reunification, a loose federation or a negotiated divorce – would probably do more good for the Greek Cypriot economy than either the gas or the bailout.

If Europe truly wants to help fellow EU members Greece and Cyprus in their hour of need – to put these damaged economies back on a healthier path, and to guide Turkey’s EU relationship onto a more normal track – its leaders should turn their attention once more to the mother of all obstacles to stability and prosperity on the southeastern edge of Europe: settling the division of Cyprus. And to help that, since the EU, Turkey and Cyprus are always welded together like a triangle, European countries will have to reach out to Turkey: be proactive in making visa procedures more humane, push France to lift its block on four EU accession chapters, reciprocate the recent overtures by Turkish leaders, and publicly recognise the enormous advantages Europe has reaped as Turkey’s principal trade and investment partner.

 

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Policy = res publica

Bärbel Freudenberg-PilsterFreudenberg-Pilster Bitte durch Unterschrift unterstützen! ./. Bitte unterstützt unsere Dialyse-Patienten !

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren,
liebe Freunde,

ich bitte Sie heute um Unterstützung für eine Patientin, stellvertretend für alle Dialyse-Patienten.
Bitte helfen Sie/Ihr durch Ihre/Eure Unterschrift. Es kann jeden treffen.

Herzliche Grüße

Holger Krestel
Mitglied der Deutschen Bundestages
FDP-Fraktion
Platz der Republik 1
11011 Berlin
Tel: 030/ 2277 2872
Fax: 030/ 2277 6871

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Politics: from Vision to Action

Barandat Governance, Identity, and Counterinsurgency: Evidence from Ramadi and Tal Afar

United States Army War College

With the last departure of U.S. combat forces from Iraq in 2011 and a drawdown in Afghanistan already underway, the current era of American counterinsurgency may be coming to a close. At the same time, irregular threats to U.S. national interests remain, and the future may hold yet more encounters with insurgents for the U.S. military. Accordingly, the latest Defense strategic guidance has called on the Department of Defense (DoD) to “retain and continue to refine the lessons learned, expertise, and specialized capabilities” from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This monograph is a contribution to this ongoing effort to institutionalize the military’s understanding of counterinsurgency, building on its hard-won recent experience. Michael Fitzsimmons examines two case studies drawn from some of the darkest months of conflict in Iraq to illuminate an important refinement of traditional counterinsurgency theory and doctrine:

that when it comes to building legitimacy, “good governance” may take a back seat to the politics of ethnic and religious identity. Dr. Fitzsimmons’s use of comparative case studies and a simple framework for systematically reviewing evidence accumulated through first-hand accounts of strategy, operations, and tactics, should serve as a compelling model for what will likely be many studies in the years to come of the U.S. military’s experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan.

DOUGLAS C. LOVELACE, JR.
Director

Strategic Studies Institute and
U.S. Army War College Press

 

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SUMMARY

The premise of most Western thinking on counterinsurgency is that success depends on establishing a perception of legitimacy among local populations.

The path to legitimacy is often seen as the improvement of governance in the form of effective and efficient administration of government and public services. However, good governance is not the only possible basis for claims to legitimacy. This monograph considers whether, in insurgencies where ethno-religious identities are politically salient, claims to legitimacy may rest more on the identity of who governs, rather than on how those people govern.

Building on a synthesis of scholarship and policy regarding insurgencies and counterinsurgencies, the politics of ethnic identity, governance, and legitimacy, the author presents an analytic framework for examining these issues and then applies that framework to two detailed local case
studies of American counterinsurgency operations in Iraq: Ramadi from 2004-05; and Tal Afar from 2005-06.

These case studies are based on primary research, including dozens of interviews with participants and eyewitnesses. In Ramadi, identity politics clearly trumped quality of governance in shaping the course of events. The grievances that fueled the insurgency had far more to do with a deep sense of disenfranchisement within Iraq’s Sunni community and the related fear of sectarian persecution than it did with any failure in the government’s performance.

As a result, the evidence from this case points toward major limits to how much popular loyalty and legitimacy could be won through the
improvement of governance. Other factors—namely security itself and identity-based concepts of legitimate rule (both tribal and sectarian)—appeared more decisive during the time of the case study.

Moreover, the tribal “Awakening” movement that took hold in Ramadi the following year strongly supports this interpretation of events. The Awakening seems to have stemmed from two key changes in Ramadi and its surrounding Anbar province.

First was the exhaustion of the population with violence and terror at the hands of Islamic extremists in their midst. Second was a new
willingness of the Coalition to recognize the legitimacy of local tribal rule in spite of the sectarian tension this rule introduced between local and national sovereignty.

Tal Afar’s story is quite different, but suggests a similar conclusion. While the quality of governance mattered in the way both the population and the counterinsurgents perceived legitimacy, improvements in governance in Tal Afar were more a consequence than a cause of successful counterinsurgency. Without both the U.S. Army’s dense presence in the city and its intensive focus on brokering compromises among the
city’s largely sectarian tribal conflicts, improvements in governance likely would never have taken root.

Governance and political compromise between sectarian groups clearly reinforced each other there, but interviews with participants in the counterinsurgency in Tal Afar suggest that improvements in governance were of secondary importance in reducing violence in the city.

The cases examined here yield ample evidence that ethno-religious identity politics do shape counterinsurgency outcomes in important ways, and also offer qualified support for the argument that addressing identity politics may be more critical than good governance to counterinsurgent success. However, the cases do not discredit the utility to counterinsurgents of providing good governance, and they corroborate
the traditional view that population security is the most important element of successful counterinsurgency strategy.
Key policy implications include the importance of making strategy development as sensitive as possible to the dynamics of identity politics,
and to local variations and the complexity in causal relationships among popular loyalties, grievances, and political violence.

http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/pubs/display.cfm?pubID=1150

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Middle East

Obama resets Middle East Compass

The spin given to United States President Barack Obama’s visit to Israel last week was that it could be a kiss-and-make-up trip aimed at improving Obama’s personal chemistry with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. If so, the mission succeeded. The surprise element came dramatically at the fag end of the visit just as Obama was about to get into the presidential jet at Tel Aviv airport on Friday.

Right there on the tarmac from a makeshift trailer, he dialed up Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and after a brief exchange of pleasantries he handed the phone to Netanyahu, who promptly went on to do what he had adamantly refused to do for the past two years – render a formal apology over the killing of nine Turks in 2010 who were traveling in a flotilla on a humanitarian mission to the Gaza enclave.

This is probably the first time in Israel’s history that it apologized to a foreign country for a sin committed.

The Gaza incident ripped apart Turkish-Israeli relations. The breakdown in ties with Turkey left Israel stranded and helpless in a region caught up in the throes of an upheaval it has never known before. The alliance with Turkey is of vital importance to Israel.

In his statement welcoming the Turkish-Israeli reconciliation, US Secretary of State John Kerry noted that this “will help Israel meet the many challenges it faces in the region“ and a full normalization will enable Tel Aviv and Ankara to “work together to advance their common interests.“

But the telephone conversation at Tel Aviv airport was a premeditated theatrical act, which Obama wanted the entire region to witness. It carried much symbolism that the captain was taking the US ship in a big arc into new directions.

The senior Turkish editor Murat Yetkin cited “high-ranking sources“ to disclose that Washington had approached Ankara a few weeks ago with the proposal that Obama wished to work on a rapprochement between Erdogan and Netanyahu and hoped to utilize his Israeli visit to that end. Yetkin wrote:

As Ankara said they could accept the good offices of the US to have an agreement with Israel, based on an apology, the diplomacy started. Before the start of Obama’s visit on March 20, diplomatic drafts about the terms of a possible agreement started to go back and forth between Ankara and Jerusalem under the auspices of US diplomacy.

Why is Turkish-Israeli normalization so terribly important for Obama – and, equally, for Erdogan and Netanyahu? The answer is to be found in the testimony given by the head of US European Command and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s top military commander, Admiral James Stavridis, before the US Senate Armed Services Committee last Monday on the eve of Obama’s departure from Washington for Israel.

Stavridis advised the US lawmakers that a more aggressive posture by the US and its allies could help break the stalemate in Syria. As he put it, “My personal opinion is that would be helpful in breaking the deadlock and bringing down the [Syrian] regime.“

The influential US senator John McCain pointedly queried Stavridis about NATO’s role in any intervention in Syria. Stavridis replied that the NATO is preparing for a range of contingencies. “We [NATO] are looking at a wide range of operations, and we are prepared if called upon to be engaged [as] we were in Libya,“ he said.

Stavridis went on to explain that the NATO Patriot missiles now deployed in Turkey ostensibly for the sake of defending Turkish airspace have the capability also to attack Syrian air force in that country’s air space and that any such a NATO operation would be a “powerful disincentive“ for the Syrian regime.

Tell-tale signs

Equally significant is that the NATO warships of the Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 [SNMGI], which arrived in the Eastern Mediterranean in late February, visited the Turkish naval base of Aksaz (where Turkey’s Southern Task Group maintains special units such as “underwater attack“) last fortnight en route to joining last week the US Strike Group consisting of the Aircraft Carrier USS Dwight D Eisenhower and escorts.

The SNMGI forms part of the NATO Response Force, which is permanently activated and is held at high readiness in order to respond to security challenges.

Thus, the picture that emerges – added to other recent tell-tale signs – is that a Western military intervention in Syria could well be in the making. Obama is moving carefully, and the commitment of US troops on the ground in Syria is just out of the question. But the US and NATO (and Israel) can give valuable air cover and can launch devastating missile attacks on the Syrian government’s command centers.

The Western powers would rather focus on eliminating President Bashar al-Assad rather than physically occupy the country. If ground forces need to be deployed inside Syria at some stage, Turkey can undertake that mission, being a Muslim country belonging to NATO.

This is where the Turkish-Israeli reconciliation comes into play. A close coordination between Turkey and Israel at the operational level can be expected to pulverize the Syrian regime from the north and south simultaneously.

But the revival of the Turkish-Israeli strategic axis has major implications for regional security. Erdogan has thoroughly milked the last ounce, politically speaking, out of his grandstanding against Israel and Zionism through the past two-year period to bolster his image in the “Arab Street“.

Erdogan lost no time to brag that the Israeli apology signaled Turkey’s growing regional influence. “We are at the beginning of a process of elevating Turkey to a position so that it will again have a say, initiative and power, as it did in the past,“ he said alluding to Turkey’s ambitions to mediate between Israel and the Palestinians.

He announced that he plans to visit the Palestinian territories, including Gaza, next month. But, having said that, Erdogan also can do with some timely help from Israel. The point is, he is currently pushing for a negotiated deal with the Kurdish militants belonging to the PKK. Last week, the PKK leader who is incarcerated in Turkey, Abdullah Ocalan, called for the vacation of the Kurdish militia from Turkish soil.

Turbulent times

Turkey has traditionally depended on Israel to provide it with intelligence on the Kurdish militant groups. Quite obviously, Erdogan hopes to revive the Turkish-Israeli intelligence sharing, which would work to Turkey’s advantage.

The Turkish-Israeli coordination in Kurdistan could buy peace for Turkish armed forces, which has been facing a surge in the Kurdish insurgency, and in turn the Pashas to concentrate on the Syrian front. At a broader level, Turkish-Israeli reconciliation will also help NATO’s future role in the Middle East as a net provider of security in the Levant. Massive energy reserves have been discovered in the Levant Basin in the recent years.

NATO’s efforts in the past four to five years to coordinate with Israel in the Eastern Mediterranean as a partner country hit the bump of the Turkish-Israeli rift. Turkey doggedly blocked NATO’s dealings with Israel and even prevented the alliance NATO from inviting Israel to its gala summit in Chicago.

Suffice to say, Turkish-Israeli reconciliation impacts the overall strategic balance in the Middle East. Turkish-Israeli collaboration at the security and military level has profound implications for the Iran question. Turkey sees Iran as a rival in the Middle East, while Israel regards Iran as an existential threat. Both estimate that Iran’s surge poses challenge to their regional ambitions. Thus, the Turkish-Israeli axis is destined to play a crucial role if the US ever decides to attack Iran.

In sum, Obama’s mediatory mission to Israel and his stunning success in healing the Turkish-Israeli rift resets the compass of Middle Eastern politics. The American regional policies are returning to their pristine moorings riveted on the perpetuation of its hegemony in the Middle East with Turkey and Israel acting as the key local agents.

While in Israel, Obama didn’t show any sense of urgency about the Middle East peace process. Indeed, turbulent times lie ahead for the Middle East.

M K Bhadrakumar served as a career diplomat in the Indian Foreign Service for over 29 years, with postings including India’s ambassador to Uzbekistan (1995-1998) and to Turkey (1998-2001).

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MID-04-250313.html

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Massenbach’sRecommendation
Oil unites Kurdistan and Turkey

Once at loggerheads, now best friends

A natural gas pipeline is being built that will transport at least 10 billion cubic meters of gas annually to Turkey in return for refined oil products to Kurdistan.

In a major move to bring Kurdistan and Turkey closer, a natural gas pipeline is being built, which will transport at least 10 billion cubic meters of gas annually. This is approximately over fifth of Turkey’s current consumption. Turkish officials have refused to publicly confirm the project that threatens to aggravate a dispute between Baghdad and the autonomous Kurdistan region over energy resources.

US officials are concerned that Turkey’s strained ties with Baghdad could have implications for the rest of the region. Turkey is defying Washington and Baghdad in developing a broad energy partnership with Iraqi Kurds as it pushes to secure affordable oil and gas supplies to fuel its rapid economic growth.

Turkey is pushing ahead with plans to extend economic cooperation with Iraq’s Kurdistan region, brushing aside warnings from the United States that this approach could lead to the disintegration of the Iraqi state.

Iraq’s Kurdish region has become so important to Turkey, economically and politically, that Ankara is willing to risk tensions with the US, its most important ally, said Celalettin Yavuz, an analyst at a think tank in the Turkish capital.

Taner Yildiz, Turkey’s energy minister announced to the Turkish media that oil imports from northern Iraq to Turkey by truck had resumed after a pause of several weeks for technical reasons. He said Turkey was determined to sell refined-oil products to Iraqi Kurdistan, the state-run Amnadolu news agency reported. Oil exports from northern Iraq to Turkey have angered the central-Iraqi government. It said the trade was illegal, which Ankara denies.

Yildiz stressed that Turkey was also buying oil from southern Iraq because doing otherwise would be „discrimination“.

The Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) announced last week its plans to press ahead with building an oil-export pipeline to Turkey. „We want to have an oil pipeline to ourselves,“ said Ashti Hawrami, the Iraqi Kurdish minister for natural resources.

Crude from the Kurdistan region used to be shipped to world markets through a Baghdad-controlled pipeline to Turkey, but exports via that channel dried up in December, from a peak of around 200,000 barrels per day (bpd), due to a row with Baghdad over payments.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister, said his country was not obliged to wait for a new agreement between the central Iraqi government and the KRG over oil exploration and export rights, even though Washington wanted Ankara to be cautious.

„Our economic relations are getting broader, despite everything, including America,“ Erdogan said last week, referring to the KRG. Erdogan, who has been careful to develop close relations with the US, freely acknowledged tensions with Washington over the issue.

Analysts say the move could also establish the country as a regional energy hub, but risks aggravating tensions in the powder keg region and damaging ties with the United States, its major ally.

Ankara had initially refused to engage in official contacts with Iraqi Kurds, fearing that the establishment of an independent Kurdish state there could embolden its own Kurds, some of whom have waged a nearly three-decade insurgency.

But as Turkey’s economy has boomed – it grew by more than 8.0 percent in 2010 and 2011 – and its thirst for energy has grown, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has moved gradually to forge trade ties with Iraqi Kurds.

The burgeoning energy ties are raising eyebrows in Washington, where there are concerns that they could tip the volatile country towards disintegration and push an increasingly isolated Baghdad into Iran’s embrace. „Economic success can help pull Iraq together,“ US Ambassador to Turkey Francis Ricciardone said earlier this month.

But „if Turkey and Iraq fail to optimize their economic relations … there could be more violent conflict in Iraq and the forces of disintegration within Iraq could be emboldened,“ he warned. „… and that would not be good for Turkey, the United States, or anybody in the region.“

Turkey has already ruffled Washington’s feathers by continuing to import Iranian (oil and gas) despite US efforts to isolate Tehran over its alleged nuclear weapons drive. But Ankara has remained defiant, supporting Iraqi Kurdistan’s right to use part of its energy resources as it sees fit.

Erdogan said the regional Kurdish government „is free to use this right with whichever country it wants and we are their neighbor.“

Analysts say energy-hungry Turkey’s dependence on expensive energy imports from Iran and Russia are pushing it to find cheaper sources, and Kurdistan appears to be the best provider.

„Iraqi sources are the cheapest and it is a way for Turkey to diminish its energy dependence,“ Mete Goknel, former director of Turkey’s state-owned pipeline company Botas, said to the Arab news online news service.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, Turkey has been importing about half of its crude oil from Iran, although this is likely to fall given international sanctions on Tehran.

In 2011 Turkey was importing nearly 60 percent of its natural gas from Iran, with a fifth coming from Russia. „Turkey depends on Russia and Iran on energy and if both countries close the tap, the Turkish economy will tank,“ said an energy expert who asked to remain anonymous.

This imported energy has been responsible for a large part of Turkey’s trade deficit, which threatens to crimp expansion. Goknel said Iraq would also benefit from Turkey becoming a regional energy hub. „It would be more advantageous for Iraq to ship its gas to western markets through Turkey versus the more expensive shipping lane, the strait of Hormuz,“ he said. A decision is expected within months on the route of a separate pipeline to ship natural gas from Azerbaijan via Turkey to Western Europe. However, Baghdad appears intent on dashing Ankara’s designs to become a regional energy hub, blocking Turkish efforts to step up their presence in Iraqi Kurdistan.

In November, Baghdad blocked Turkish national energy firm TPAO from bidding for an oil exploration contract, a decision which Erdogan said was not „smart business. Later on in December, Baghdad barred a plane carrying Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz from landing in Erbil as he was reportedly on his way to seal the much-speculated energy deal.

A Baghdad-controlled oil pipeline that goes to Turkey operates well below its capacity to transport 70.9 million tons per year.

Sunni-majority Turkey is also at loggerheads with the Iraqi government of Shiite Prime Minister Nuri Al-Maliki over a number of issues including Ankara’s refusal to extradite fugitive Vice President Tareq Al-Hashemi.

Despite the difficulties, Turkish trade with Iraq has grown rapidly, from $ 2.8 billion in 2007 to $ 10.7 billion last year.

Iraq is now Turkey’s number two trade partner following Germany, with most of its trade being from the Kurdish region. More than 1,000 Turkish companies are currently operating in northern Iraq, and they are optimistic Iraq could become Turkey’s top trade partner as soon as this year.

More significantly peace with the Kurdish rebels in Northern Kurdistan would likely further increase the attractiveness of Iraqi Kurdish energy resources for Turkey, say analysts.
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Leserbrief

Die Berliner FDP – ein überzeugendes Angebot für liberale Wähler der Stadt??

Die Aufstellung der Berliner Landesliste für die kommende Bundestagswahl haben viele Bürger mit Enttäuschung zur Kenntnis genommen – auch viele Parteimitglieder können sich mit dem Ergebnis nicht identifizieren. Eine Liste ohne Frauen und auch ohne Senioren/Seniorinnen. Damit wird die Berliner FDP in den Augen vieler zu einem reinen „Männerverein“. Diese Männer im mittleren Lebensabschnitt sollen die Gunst der Berliner gewinnen ? Dazu kommt, dass die Spitzenkandidaten auf der Liste die bisherigen drei* Bundestagsabgeordneten sind, die mit ihrer Politik in den letzten drei Jahren zum miserablen Umfrageergebnis auf Bundesebene und auch zur Wahlkatastrophe in der Abgeordnetenhauswahl 2011 beigetragen haben. Diese Landesliste stellt keinen Neuanfang dar. Sie ist das sichtbare Zeichen dafür, dass die Berliner FDP weiterhin in alten, verkrusteten Strukturen verhaftet ist, dass die alten, überholten „Strippenzieher“ in der Partei immer noch das Sagen haben.

M. aus D.

* Dr. Martin Lindner, Lars Lindemann, Holger Krestel.

Platz 4: Helmut Metzner (Mitarbeiter von Martin Lindner, MdB)…., Platz 8: Hartmut Bade (Mitarbeiter von Heinrich Kolb, MdB)

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Wir wünschen Ihnen ein angenehmes Wochenende. Ihr Team.

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Udo von Massenbach – Bärbel Freudenberg-Pilster – Jörg Barandat

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