So says PoliGazette, citing a Dutch newspaper. Hurriyet, a Turkish news service, has it too. Simply appalling, and all the more so because it seems to be motivated by nothing more noble than Rasmussen’s personal ambition to be appointed head of NATO. Evidently, begging Muslims’ forgiveness for supporting free speech is the price of winning Turkey’s support. This makes twice now in the span of two months that a European pol who took a stand against Islamic violence has paid a political price for doing so.
The kicker? He’s going to do it in Istanbul.
Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Denmark’s leader, was one of the few European politicians who refused to give in to pressure from fundamentalists in the Middle East when a Danish newspaper published the now infamous “Mohammed cartoons.” His attitude was welcomed by may Europeans, especially by conservatives. He was quickly promoted to “hero of the freedom of speech,” and became one of the old continent’s most popular politicians.
But then something changed. Rasmussen set his eyes upon NATO. He wanted to become the organization’s next secretary general. An ambitious man, he proved willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish his goals.
Follow the link to PoliGazette for a trenchant point about what this’ll do to the secularist cause in Turkey. Meanwhile, Tapper posted an item last night at ABC about the impasse between Denmark and Turkey and how a certain smooth-talking Lightworker heroically intervened to heal the rift. Omitted were details about just what The One said or did to forge a compromise. The question: What role did our very liberal president have in acquiescing in or even encouraging this total betrayal of liberal values?
Obama, Rasmussen and [Turkish President Abdullah] Gul had another conversation, for about an hour, according to Obama’s national security adviser, Gen. Jim Jones (Ret.), and White House press secretary Robert Gibbs…
“As a result of the dialogue between the three heads of the state, they found a common ground that allowed Turkey to believe that their legitimate concerns about terror were going to be addressed, and Denmark, the Prime Minister found common ground to where, in his capacity as Secretary General, that Turkey now feels certain that he will take their considerations — take under account their considerations Alliance-wide,” Jones said.
When the three men returned to the main session, Jones told reporters, they had smiles on their faces, indicating that a deal of some sort had been clinched…
Said Jones: “I think it was a very helpful moment. I think that our President really was instrumental in bringing about this common ground and finding this common ground — and as a result the Alliance has a new Secretary General elected unanimously.”
I’m going to try to get Tapper’s attention on Twitter to press him to follow up. Stay tuned.
Update: Tapper’s on the case. He makes a good point about the sketchiness of some European media so I’ve added a question mark to the title, but Hurriyet is a mainstream Turkish paper with high circulation. Presumably a lot of Turks are expecting an apology tomorrow now. If one doesn’t come, that may end up being a story in itself.
Tapper also insists that Obama didn’t have any say in the terms of the negotiations, merely in bringing the parties together. That sounds very different from the description in last night’s item about an hour of “dialogue” between the three.