You have said “this Turkish freindship is not more than a geo-political role.”
Unfortunately, neither you have understood the good intentions of Turkish people nor the Turkish government ruled by the Islamic moderate AK Party (The Justice and the Development Party). Clearly, you have little readings on International politics and highly influenced by the conspiracy theorists who believe there must be some hidden agenda because no good can or should occur without a secret agenda.
First, let me answer a common question that has been often raised in forums and probably confused so many Somalian natives or diapora about the recent collaboration of the Turkish State. Why Turkey and why all of a sudden? It is not all of a sudden. Since the establishment of Turkish Republic in 1923 from the ruins of great Ottoman Muslim Empire, Turkey was ruled by highly autocratic socialist/facist governments backed by the Turkish Military. Turkey has suffered the devastating results of the broken empire for decades; after that, it was the World War II. Although Turkey did not participate in the War and encountered the European nations such as Britain to fight on their side against the Soviets (spread of Marxism) and the Germans (nazi-facism), the nation suffered economically for the following decades. Right after the World War II, there was the expansion of Marxism, the fear of Soviet occupation and the effects of the Cold War between the East and the West. Turkey was in the epicenter of the Cold War. The global conditions influenced the domestic politic and the political powers in addition to ASALA Armenian terror activities in the 1980s and the PKK Kurdish terror activities since 1970s. As a result, Turkey has never become a stable nation until the election of 2002 when the AK Party was overwhelmingly and democratically elected into the power. The first 6 years of it, there were multiple attempts to overthrow the democratically elected government by the political parties, media groups, financial institutions and educational centers run or controlled by the fascist/socialists backed by the military with the similar agenda. They believed with their hearths and minds that there were two groups of people in Turkey: the elite and the working class(mostly made up by Muslims).
Although Turkish people are secualar,the conservatives make up the majority in Turkey; 65-70% versus 30-35% the ultra secular(the Kemalists) and socialists/marxists. Turks are finally enjoying some stability although not quite yet for the first time since 2008. Turkish economy has blosommed since the AK Party got into power in 2002. Its economy and export quadrapled during this ten year period.
Turks have great pride. They see that they have achieved great things in the past creating so many great and long lasting empires and nations, the Ottoman Empire is the last of them in a very unstable geography. The Turkish Muslims are very proud of their religion and believe it is the teachings of their religion that allowed them to succeed. Whenever they strayed away from their beliefs, they have also suffered. Under the leadership of the AK Party and Tayyip Erdogan,a very proud Muslim, they believe they can contribute to the volatile world in a positive way where we all can live in peace. They believe Muslims have the responsibility to change the negative perception of the world about Islam. For that, the Muslims need to act according to the teachings of Islamic belief: Muslims must form true brotherhood.
As a young kid, I remember, like millions, I would watch the heartbreaking tv footages about the suffering in Africa, suffering of Africans and particularly Muslim children and women due to drought and starvation. We all were highly affected by those tv footages. We all cried for them. Unfortunately, we were also helpless. We had so much trouble at home! We, ourselves, were not living in decent conditions and how could we help to others. Neverthless, we helped what we could but it went unnoticeable in a world the West dictate everything including writing and propagading their views on the Western controlled media. All the good things could come only through Christinaity and the Western Nations because they were the civilized nations and there was the rest (remember, how they expanden in Africa and their criminal activities were justified?)
Now, we are in 2013. Turkey wants to be a dominant force not only in the region but in the world, again. They know they can do it. Turkish people and the state do not want to be ignored or mistreated by the West, their largest trade partners, who approach Turkey with a carrot and stick. Turkey believes they need to expand and find new economic partners. But also, Turks believe they have responsibility to protect and improve the conditions of Muslims all over the world. Turks believe there is necessity for the establishment of Islamic alliance in real sense. Only, then they can change the negative perceptions about Islam and Muslims while they can also be dominant force in the world against the other expanding forces: the U.S. The EU, China and Russia. Otherwise, they all be irrelevant! Turkey believes Turks and Muslims can be relevant again ONLY if they unite and form brotherhood and economic partnership.
Turkey has been expanding its economic activities in the Central Asian regions where there are 6 more Turkish Republics were formed following the break up of the Soviet Union. Turkey has increased its economic partnership with its neighbors including its most ardent enemies, Greece, and other Ottoman controlled European and Middle Eastern states. Beyond all that there is great Africa with whom Turkey has historical ties that goes back to 16th century.
As a result, for those who believe in conspiracy teories, I suggest you study Turkish history, Turkish people, and the effects of global economy, and how to build and survive strong land long-lasting economic and political partnership in the global world.
Turkish humanitarian aid is no different than its approach to Greece or elsewhere. With its limited resources due to decades-old financial debt to international organization, Turks want to aid nations in difficulties as much as possible. Such moves can bring nations closer to each other. When the earthquake happened in Turkey in the late 90s, Greeks send an aid team. The following year, Greece had similar natural disaster and Turkey did the same. Following that, two nations has got closer more than ever before since the independence of Greece from the Ottoman Empire. Similarly, Turkey, while wanting to aid her muslim bretherens in Somalia also want to establish stronger ties with Somalia and Somali people that will benefit both nations.
Look, no nation can help another one forever unless they can facilitate the resources somehow to pay the cost. So there is nothing wrong if Turkey or else want to aid Somalia to be a financially independent nation by investing in the country. It will create jobs for the locals and improve their lives while those who take risk and aid Somalia at a very difficult time. As you all agree, Somalia needs to be independent rather than seeking aid continously so that they can determine their own future. Unless, Somalia is secure, the western companies will not settle in Somalia.
In regards to the competition between Iran and Turkey mentioned in some other websites, I do not believe it is a concern for Turkey as much as it is for Iran. Iran has political agenda, mainly. Although Iran’s largest trade partner is Turkey, it is alinated from the civilized world whereas Turkey has great relations with the U.S, the EU, the Middle Eastern nations including Israel. Turkey believes in positivity while Iranian government acts in the opposite direction. While Turkey support soverign nations, Iran supports the terror groups or illegitimate governments within those nations. I remember Iran was a big threat for Turkey following the Iranian revolution as Iran began exporting its staunch religious views to neigboring nations including Turkey. The democratic and economic improvements in Turkey now made Turkey the biggest threat for the survival of the Ayatollah regime of Iran. The Iranian regime fears that Turkish democracy will topple the Iranian regime because more and more Iranian are questioning why Iran can’t be like Turkey where everyone can live their lives freely.
Moreover, Iran has been losing friends one after another. They are one of the two majority Shia government, Iraq is the other one. They know they only can expand in the unstable states such as Somalia as they did in Lebanon. It does not matter for Turkey as to whether Somalia stays as a Shia or Sunni state. Turkey’s largest trade partner after the EU, is Iran; thus, Turkey can do business with Shia Somalia as well if it comes to that. But, Turkey wants Somalia to set example to the rest of Africa. Now, we all are convinced that neither the U.N nor the western nations such as the U.S. and the EU states can bring stability to Somalia. Turkey has nothing to lose by trying its own method that has succeeded in Turkey. The numbers of major constructions Turkish AK Party has done in all over Turkey is immense. The things that were said “impossible” for decades became reality within a few years. So many major projects have been completed in a short span of time. It is amazing! Turks now have the confidence the replicate that development elsewhere. Venezuelan goevenrment signed an agreement with Turkish state to build 500,000 homes. Airports, thousands of miles of roads, railroads, tunnels, subways, metros, bridges have been built and are being built in Turkey only in ten years. Turks believe they can replicate it in Somalia.
So, it is time we stop looking for conspiracies but believe in ourselves and the good intentions of others, Turkey in Somalia case, to move forward. God willing, with hope, Somalia will achieve great things. Turks will be providing as much support as they are capable and Somalians need.
Peace and Salaam.
By Anthony Keane