Turkey seizes churches 2
Christian Persecution

While Erdoğan seizes churches, Cameron fights for Turkey to join the EU

 

David Cameron has pledged to fight for Turkey to be admitted to the European Union. This, he avers, would place them at “the top table of European politics”, where, he says, they deserve to be. But there are a couple of problems with this. Or possibly three. Or even four.

Firstly, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is currently busy seizing churches and land belonging to Armenian, Syriac, Chaldean and Protestant Christian communities. The ruling Justice and Development Party is zealously meting out ‘justice’ to Christians and pursuing ethnic and religious ‘development’ along traditional lines. “The government didn’t take over these pieces of property in order to protect them. They did so to acquire them,” Pastor Ahmet Guvener of Diyarbakir Protestant Church told the World Watch Monitor. The ‘nationalised’ churches now under Turkish state control are listed as: the Virgin Mary Syriac Orthodox Church, the Surp (Armenian for ‘Saint’) Sarkis Chaldean Catholic Church, the Diyarbakir Protestant Church, the Apostolic Armenian Surp Giragos Church, an Armenian Catholic church, and the Mar Petyun Chaldean Catholic Church. Turkey regularly features in the Open Doors ‘World Watch Map‘ of Christian persecution, and is currently ranked No.45 in the world (but still in receipt of £9million of UK aid).

While executing this progrom, President Erdoğan cloaks himself in immunity from all criticism. Insulting the president is a crime in Turkey punishable by up to four years in jail, but the consequences of being even a bit rude about him appear to extend to the EU. Chancellor Merkel has acceded to a request from Erdoğan to prosecute German comedian Jan Böhmermann for reciting a ‘poem’ (scarcely) entitled ‘Slanderous Criticism‘. And now Dutch journalist Ebru Umar has been prevented from leaving the country after tweeting something critical of the Turkish President. Imagine Turkey within the EU, when this blog post might fall within the purview of the European Arrest Warrant, and application is made to seek out His Grace’s ashes and extradite them to rot in Sağmalcılar Prison (or perhaps not there: it’s now a posh hotel) along with the ghost of Billy Hayes and any journalists, artists or intellectual dissidents who fall out of favour with the King of the Turks. By way of challenge, the Spectator has launched ‘The President Erdogan Offensive Poetry Competition’ (£1000 prize to be won). Send your entries HERE.

There’s also the slight problem of the Armenian Genocide, in which Turks tortured and slaughtered well over a million ethnic Christians as the curtain was falling on the Ottoman Empire at the beginning of the 20th century. Or perhaps David Cameron agrees with President Erdoğan (and Pope Francis?) that this wasn’t ‘genocide’. The Prime Minister does appear to be a little confused as to what precisely constitutes ‘genocide’: if the contemporary systematic eradication of Christians and Yazidis from Iraq doesn’t qualify, a million or so pesky Armenians from a few skewed history books won’t matter either. As Turkey’s denial deepens, Europe’s silent embrace is extended, eyes averted. One person’s ‘genocide’ is another’s ‘necessary measure’. The killing fields and starving deserts of a century ago are of little consequence: ‘Europe’ must be united in peace and reconciliation. What is truth?

Then there’s the small matter of whether Christians should vote for Turkey. Or, indeed, whether they would do so, for the French Constitution (Article 88-5) demands a referendum to ratify Turkish accession to the EU, and democracy can be a very inconvenient thing (as the EU has found previously in France, Denmark, the Netherlands, Ireland and Greece; and as Austria is just discovering).

Turkey is in a state of denial about its own bloody history: it denies freedom of religion, prohibits freedom of speech, and rides roughshod over the freedom of the press and other media. Turkey cannot be reconciled to European civilisation until she is reconciled to Armenian suffering. Quite why David Cameron thinks they deserve to be “at the top table of European politics” is something of a mystery. Unless it is born of political ignorance, religious disregard and a crass, superficial grasp of the inevitable consequences for Europe and the UK – within Schengen or without.

  • Sigfridiii

    Follow the money wherever Cameron is concerned – there must be a silver lining somewhere which he has identified

  • Uncle Brian

    The organizers of the Spectator’s competition say they prefer limericks. I’ve been trying to produce one but I haven’t got very far:

    Chancellor Angela Merkel
    Sincerely believes the Grand Turk’ll
    ……….. ………..
    ……….. ………..
    It’s as hopeless as squaring the circle.

    Any suggestions? We could even submit them as a joint entry, prize money (if any) to be donated to His Grace’s roof fund.

    • The Explorer

      Difficult. Finding another word to rhyme with Merkel for the last line is a real facer.

    • Findaráto

      “put the Gast in her Arbeiters,
      Without riling her Gauleiters”

    • Anton

      Merely wish to trade spice
      And become REALLY nice

      • Uncle Brian

        Lend his full weight
        To the secular state

        The trouble is, none of these are rude enough so far, not even Findarato’s. The Spectator specifies rude.

    • dannybhoy

      Chancellor Angela Merkel
      Sincerely believes the Grand Turk’ll
      Play the Eurogame fair and square.
      But Erdogan’s aim is not quite the same.
      It’s Islam for Europe; game, set and match.

  • David

    Splendid article !
    Now we are seeing the effects of relativism combined with self-interest operating at the highest levels to the grave detriment of freedom and democracy.
    Meanwhile the UK public slumber on in naive confusion and ignorance regarding the true nature of their government and the growing tyranny of the EU. What will it take to wake them up ?

  • The Explorer

    What makes a country part of Europe? Is it race, geographical location, or simply outlook on life? Recently, we imported Chinese steel at the expense of our own. On that basis, why not have China in the EU? After all, the EU is simply a transitional step towards the ultimate global state.

    • Findaráto

      Tsk, tsk! Get it right! The ultimate gobal elite lizard state, you mean.

      • The Explorer

        I’ve told you before: I don’t believe in the lizards.

        • Findaráto

          Which is exactly what a lizard agent would say…

          • The Explorer

            Quite true. It’s like that question put by American Immigration, “Are you a terrorist?” How many actual terrorists are going to say, “Yes”.

          • Anton

            The ones who are a second away from detonating a suicide vest of high explosive.

      • Anton

        You mean they bask in the sun doing nothing for most of the time, then rush and kill something?

        • Findaráto

          So you have been invited to Balmoral then…

          • Anton

            All Scottish snakes are venomous. (Of the three species native to Britain, only the Adder is hardy enough to survive north of the border.)

          • Uncle Brian

            All Scottish snakes are venomous.

            So are Scottish fish ,in particular the salmond and the sturgeon.

          • Anton

            The SNP is very fishy.

          • Findaráto

            They’re reptiles but I don’t think they’re snakes. More like velociraptors in drag.

            Killing things is their favourite pastime. It’s what they do all summer. If you live in Scotland and have four legs and a pointy hairdo, the most lethal thing on earth is a member of the royal family.

            Anyway, if you want some proof, wave a piece of fresh venison under their noses and watch their eyes blink horizontally and the forked tongues come flicking out. Don’t believe it? Too fantastic to be true? No more fantastic than resurrected corpses and virgin births. No proof that they ever happened beyond hearsay and fantastic stories. So if you believe in them, why not believe in the global elite lizard people?

          • Anton

            Actually I do believe in a giant talking reptile. See Genesis 3.

    • David Harkness

      Maybe it is their history that qualifies them… their armies have spent so much time in European countries over the years.

  • The Explorer

    I suspect Call me Dave’s support for Turkey is very much along the lines of his promotion of Same-Sex Marriage. Find an underdog and elevate it, to establish your humanitarian credentials.

    • Albert

      The British attitude has often been to support countries joining the EU for several reasons: to draw them away from Russia and to weaken the centralisation of Brussels. It’s pretty obvious that the latter at least hasn’t worked, but that might not stop officials having that attitude.

      • The Explorer

        I’m vague on how EU voting works because it seems to vary from one treaty to another, but looking at the Council of Europe it seems that Germany has the most votes because it has the largest population, and Luxembourg has the fewest.

        But Germany has 80 million (or 81 million with the latest influx) and Turkey has 79 million. Would that make Turkey the second-most influential member for having the second-largest population in the EU, or does time of joining have a bearing?

        • Albert

          Yes, that’s effectively how it works. Under QMV you need to have a proportion of the countries (55%), representing the majority of the people (65%). This seems reasonable in itself, but it means that a country like Germany has more power (and therefore Turkey). This follows also for the Parliament, in which large countries get more seats, but, perversely, the seats are not divided up equally relative to their populations, but on the contrary, there are huge discrepancies. Luxembourg has 76,667 people per MEP and we have 839,194 per MEP – while Spain, which has the least MEPs per person has one MEP for 875,160 people. Weirdly, Germany does better than that, having 832,606 people per MEP.

          Anyway, it’s all partly irrelevant, because decisions made in the Council between our elected representatives (and I guess the Parliament as well) can be struck down by the European Court on the basis of the EU constitution (which of course, it doesn’t have, since it was defeated in a referendum).

          • Albert

            Actually, the MEP figures are 2003, not the current ones. But the same system is in place.

    • Uncle Brian

      But in this case Turkish Christians are the underdog. Cameron is speaking power to truth.

    • Perhaps the non existent person with whom Dave did not share exotic pleasures at Oxford and who obviously did not blackmail him into same sex so called marriage was also not at all Turkish.

  • Albert

    Excellent post. WHILE ERDOĞAN SEIZES CHURCHES, CAMERON FIGHTS FOR TURKEY TO JOIN THE EU

    Let’s just remember what that means. It means that Turkey would have a position of influence and power within the EU, to impose rules on us. In fact, because of qualified majority voting, and the way the seats are allocated, from an EU point of view, Turkey would have more power than us, over which things the EU imposes on us.

  • B flat

    Cameron has not been a Conservative in any english sense since becoming leader of the Conservative Party. He has no grasp on reality, only an adherence to the superficial ephemera which feature in the BBC news and so have public airing.
    The answer to your Grace’s question in the last paragraph is an emphatic affirmative.

    • Old Nick

      Eton: smooth. PPE: shallow.

  • Anton

    I don’t trust Boris. But I’m moving toward the ABC position (Anyone But Cameron)…

    • CliveM

      A few years back I watched a programme, in which Boris proclaimed the benefits of Turkey joining the EU.

      I would trust Boris, less the I would trust Cameron.

      And frankly his performance for vote leave, hasn’t been that impressive. I’m beginning to sound his sincerity in backing the Out campaign.

      • Ian G

        Boris has an excuse. He has Turkish ancestry.

        • CliveM

          Well it certainly excuses his fondness for Turkey, not I think his unconvincing performance for the out campaign!!

          • Albert

            What is it about his performance that is so unconvincing?

          • Dreadnaught

            He’s primarily a journalist, fond of jokey, sound-bite politics and totally lacking gravitas on the world stage. Sadly the rest apart from Gove are crap too, even if he was also a journalist.

          • Albert

            That may be true, but the claim was that his lack of “conviciningness” is because of insincerity. I don’t agree that he has been unconvincing or that he lack sincerity. He’s a big personality, and that’s his forte, and that is what he is doing with Brexit.

          • Findaráto

            Johnson is a tennis player politician. It’s all about him. He can win competitions that require him to pit his talent against another, but expecting him to lead a team effort is like expecting a cat to lead a pack of wolves.

            The European referendum is not a personality issue. It’s not about Boris, although he’s doing his best to make it seem that way. I suspect it will be his downfall as a politician because it reveals his essential weakness. He’s a lone opportunist rather than a federating statesman. He can’t lead. All he can do is entertain.

            Has there been anything more comical in politics recently than Boris’s attempt to take on Obama? It’s like watching a Jack Russell bark and snap at an elephant. Lots of noise. You can even admire the terrier’s pluck and derring-do. But one stomp of the elephant’s foot will settle the conflict pretty quickly.

            Now the elephant has moved on and the terrier’s broken body is stirring feebly in the ruins of its passage. The poor little mutt will keep on yapping until it expires. That’s the way of the Jack. They’re nothing if not vocal. But would you want to be led by one? A team mascot maybe. A plucky little chap who can posture and growl in a high profile mayoral position where he entertain but do little real harm. That’s Boris’s forte. But anyone who thinks he’ll lead the Leave campaign to victory is following a circus clown to certain defeat.

          • Anton

            Obama has no gravitas and it is obvious.

          • Albert

            It’s like watching a Jack Russell bark and snap at an elephant.

            I don’t agree with that. Obama was never any good, but now he is a lame duck president, and he’s anti-British. A Jack Russell taking on a lame duck results in a victory for the Jack Russell.

          • Findaráto

            Obama is the president of the United States and therefore by definition a political heavyweight. Whether you respect him or not, he’s the most powerful man in the world and will continue to be so until the day his term expires.

            His successor will probably be another Democrat, therefore to call him a lame duck is not quite accurate. A Clinton presidency will build upon Obama’s legacy, so his place in history as an epoch-defining president is pretty secure.

            Only a Trump victory can change that. But how can a man whose own party is desperately trying to block his candidacy ever hope to win a presidential election? It’s estimated that at least a third of Republicans will vote for anyone except Trump, and the few Democrats he seduces with his anti-immigrant, extreme right wing politics don’t go any way towards making up the numbers.

            CNN has a prediction page that tracks current political trends on a real-time basis. Currently Clinton is predicted to win the presidency by a staggering 80% of participants. This represents a never-before-seen majority for a presidential candidate and while it could of course change before the election takes place, barring a major scandal the Democrats are pretty much assured of four more years.

            By insulting Obama, Johnson is treading on dangerous ground. If he hopes to become the next Conservative leader, he’s going to be severely handicapped by American disapproval. After his remarks about Obama’s ethnicity, Clinton is going to have to keep him at arm’s length and the “special relationship” will suffer.

            Personally I don’t think Boris is capable of becoming PM anyway, but his current antics have holed any campaign he might want to mount well below the waterline.

          • Albert

            Obama has been a spectacularly unimpressive President. His approval ratings in the US have been low. He has been singularly unimpressive in foreign affairs. At home he has generated the Donald Trump Republicans don’t want to vote for. He shouldn’t have been involved in a referendum debate this close to the poll, and his argument was hypocritical, etc. Boris simply articulated what most people think.

          • Findaráto

            Obama is a two-term president, i.e. he was not only elected, but re-elected. How did he do that if he was “spectacularly unimpressive”?

            Like all Christians you project your beliefs onto others and create a fantasy that bears no relation to the reality of the world around you. You may be unimpressed with Obama, but your opinion was not shared by a majority of Americans. Had it been, he would not be nearing the end of his second term in the White House.

            Obama’s intervention in the referendum campaign was carefully calculated. It sends a powerful message from the party that will rule the US for the next four years to an ally whose usefulness hangs in the balance. We’re the US’s bridgehead into Europe. They don’t want us to leave because we’re the only member state that consistently backs their interests. How many US companies base their European operations in the UK? How many will retain such a presence when the UK no longer offers them unfettered access to the single market?

            Good friends don’t shy away from offering advice when their partners are considering making foolhardy choices. Obama merely voiced what most Americans – or at least those who value the “special relationship”, among whom it is doubtful that Trump can be counted – believe we should do. You might not like what he said, but to claim he had no right to say it is pure partisan fatuousness. Had he egged us on to leave, you’d be crowing just as loudly as any Remainer.

          • Albert

            How did he do that if he was “spectacularly unimpressive”

            Because the Republicans are in a mess. Remember, that David Cameron could not even beat Gordon Brown properly at the fag end of three Labour terms and the Iraq war. This is not evidence that Brown and Labour were any good, it is evidence that the Tories were in a mess.

            Like all Christians you project your beliefs onto others and create a fantasy that bears no relation to the reality of the world around you. You may be unimpressed with Obama, but your opinion was not shared by a majority of Americans. Had it been, he would not be nearing the end of his second term in the White House.

            This is just pure prejudice and also poor logic as my previous paragraph showed. Actually, the conclusion I was drawing was not a fantasy world, but a reflection of Obama’s approval ratings, which I had just checked. Far from my opinion not being shared by the majority of Americans, the evidence is precisely that they do share it. Obama’s approval ratings have rarely been above 50%, his average is 47%, his low which he reached on 12 occasions is 40%. This compares with a presidential average of 53%, and the number for most presidents being much higher (people like Bush really brought it down, again explaining why Obama got back in). Thus your position is typical of atheists, a load of irrational and illogical argument unsupported by and in fact contradicted by the evidence.

            He was speaking for his own interest, not ours – you seem to rejoice in this.

            Had he egged us on to leave, you’d be crowing just as loudly as any Remainer.

            No. I would have thought it was wrong for him to speak out so close to the poll.

          • Findaráto

            You can criticise Obama all you like, but the fact remains that he beat his Republican opponents twice in a row with substantial majorities each time. However you look at it, that’s pretty impressive going.

            And it’s interesting that you “blame” his victories on the disarray of the opposing side. If that’s true then Hillary Clinton’s victory in November is assured. Trump’s candidacy is tearing the Republicans apart. There’s no chance of them being able to unite behind him within a few months to fight a successful presidential campaign.

            According to your logic this means that Clinton’s victory will be undeserved and her presidency therefore illegitimate. According to mine it means she’ll be elected by a large majority of her countrymen and have a clear mandate to continue Obama’s social and economic reforms. You will of course ignore the only opinion poll that counts – the election – and wait until she does something unpopular. Then you’ll use whatever poll of the moment shows her support to be slipping to try to undermine her legitimacy and claim that she’s spectacularly unimpressive, when actually she’ll be just as legitimate and impressive as any president is until the day he or she leaves office.

            I look towards the forthcoming presidential election with considerable anticipation. The prospect of four more years of Democrat rule in the US and the continuing marginalization of religion in public life there is exactly what I would wish for.

          • Albert

            According to your logic this means that Clinton’s victory will be undeserved and her presidency therefore illegitimate.

            Obviously, that isn’t where my logic leads. I said that Obama’s victories are based on the mess of the Republicans, not because he won, but because he won, despite having terrible approval ratings, and because we know that the Republicans are in disarray. Thus you are arguing invalidly here, by failing to grasp the argument and the evidence.

            It strikes me as highly likely that Hillary will win.

            Then you’ll use whatever poll of the moment shows her support to be slipping to try to undermine her legitimacy and claim that she’s spectacularly unimpressive, when actually she’ll be just as legitimate and impressive as any president is until the day he or she leaves office.

            Why are you so unevidential? Nothing I have done supports the idea that I base my judgment on one poll of a moment. The point about opinion polls of approval ratings is that they give an average for the entire presidency. I would have thought that was obvious, given the number of figures I cited.

            The prospect of four more years of Democrat rule in the US and the continuing marginalization of religion in public life there is exactly what I would wish for.

            Of course you think that. You proceed illogically from unevidential assumptions.

          • Findaráto

            Perhaps Obama’s victory should tell you something about approval ratings. Their unreliability has been demonstrated clearly enough in our own electoral process. If you take approval ratings as evidence of a president’s spectacular unimpressiveness, you clearly have a very low evidentiary threshold.

            The ultimate proofs of Obama’s ability to impress were his election victories. A victor only has to impress more than his opponent. That’s the only scale of impressiveness he can be judged against. You can compare him all you like to previous presidents. It doesn’t matter if Bill Clinton and FDR were more impressive, as judged by larger majorities. Obama wasn’t standing against them. He was standing against McCain and Romney, and he was clearly more impressive than they were.

            Your flexible attitude to evidence doesn’t surprise me. After all, you also claim the Gospels and Church tradition as evidence for the existence of God. Clearly “evidence” for you means whatever argument, no matter how fictitious or logically ludicrous, happens to support your position.

            Indeed there is no logic in your position at all. Just the usual preposterous claims of a fantasist. The fact remains that Obama is president because he managed to impress the American electorate twice in a row. Any claim to the contrary is not based on evidence, but rather on prejudice and, I suspect, a general feeling of animus against anyone who isn’t Catholic and won’t condemn gays, women who won’t submit to their husbands and all other categories of “sinner” to hell fire and damnation.

          • Albert

            Perhaps Obama’s victory should tell you something about approval ratings.

            This is classic atheist thinking. First you said:

            Like all Christians you project your beliefs onto others and create a fantasy that bears no relation to the reality of the world around you.

            So I produced a load of evidence. In return, you simply raised the bar to make the evidence inadmissible. But that’s wrong for several reasons. Firstly, if you bother to look at the evidence, you can see how poor Obama is, when compared with other presidents – indeed, I gave a comparison. Only two US presidents since 1937 score worse than him and the one with the worst average record (Truman) also won two terms. The president with the worst ever approval ratings (G Bush) also won two terms. And speaking of the elections you are so fond of, let’s see how elections have gone: Obama now has no majority in either house in congress.

            Now of course, you can keep raising the bar to ensure any awkward evidence does not count against you, but at that point, it is your position that ceases to be evidence based. But it was you that accused me of not being evidence based.

            The ultimate proofs of Obama’s ability to impress were his election victories. A victor only has to impress more than his opponent.

            Precisely! So the only evidence of Obama’s success is in fact something that is not straight evidence of his success but of how he compares with someone else – someone , we know was hindered by the pain of George “two electoral victories” Bush’s time in office.

            He was standing against McCain and Romney, and he was clearly more impressive than they were.

            Which is to say, not very impressive – since they weren’t impressive.

            Your flexible attitude to evidence doesn’t surprise me.

            So let’s just be clear: on no evidence, you accused me of not being based on evidence. Then when I provided an abundance of evidence, all you could do was change the rules, ignore the evidence, and then provide an argument (two terms) that would make the two most unpopular presidents popular, and you are having to go against the electoral evidence of congress! And yet you accuse me of a flexible attitude to evidence!

            After all, you also claim the Gospels and Church tradition as evidence for the existence of God.

            No I don’t – again, you are just throwing things out without any understanding or reference to evidence. Just because you hold a range of irrational and anti-evidential beliefs about what religious people think, doesn’t mean to say we think those things. It just means you are irrational and anti-evidential, which is to say, you are deeply prejudiced against religious people, which is why you want us marginalised.

            Clearly “evidence” for you means whatever argument, no matter how fictitious or logically ludicrous, happens to support your position.

            Clearly that applies to you, not me – as anyone can see from these posts.

            Just the usual preposterous claims of a fantasist.

            The last time you accused me of that, I gave you a load of evidence, which you could not contradict, except to deny it. Bizarre.

            Any claim to the contrary is not based on evidence, but rather on prejudice

            I never made any claim to the contrary. That’s just your irrational, and anti-evidentialist prejudice again.

            and, I suspect, a general feeling of animus against anyone who isn’t Catholic and won’t condemn gays, women who won’t submit to their husbands and all other categories of “sinner” to hell fire and damnation.

            Since I have not made such a claim, this claim of yours seems to be based on nothing more than a feeling of animus against anyone who from a religious perspective, disagrees with you.

          • Findaráto

            And this is typical religious thinking.

            You provide “evidence” and when anyone dares to debunk it, you claim they’re “raising the bar”.

            Your evidence is bogus and you know it, so your only choice is to discredit the person contesting it by claiming that the very act of questioning shows bad faith, a lack of logic, or whatever other accusation you decide to smear him with.

            It’s typical Catholic obscurantist nonsense. Discrediting sceptics via character assassination and accusations of prejudice and anti-Catholic hatred.

            No wonder your religion is dying in all societies that encourage independent thinking. Not only can we see the utter emptiness of the fantastic claims you make, we can also sense the malice you feel towards anyone who challenges you.

            That’s what it all boils down to in the end: malice. It drips from everything you write. What a religion! Hatred and contempt trying to masquerade as love and concern. It’s beyond pitiable.

          • Albert

            You provide “evidence” and when anyone dares to debunk it, you claim they’re “raising the bar”. Your evidence is bogus and you know it

            The suggestion that approval ratings, comparisons with other presidents’s approval ratings and indeed comparison within the approval rating and congressional elections are not evidence is such a bad argument that I’m not even going to reply to it.

            It’s typical Catholic obscurantist nonsense.

            So approval ratings, comparisons with other presidents and congressional elections are Catholic obscurantist nonsense. What’s particularly bizarre about your position is that on the one hand you call approval rating “bogus” on the grounds that opinion polls are sometimes inaccurate, but on the other hand you appeal to similar evidence to defend you own position:

            It’s estimated that at least a third of Republicans will vote for anyone except Trump, and the few Democrats he seduces with his anti-immigrant, extreme right wing politics don’t go any way towards making up the numbers.

            CNN has a prediction page that tracks current political trends on a real-time basis. Currently Clinton is predicted to win the presidency by a staggering 80% of participants. This represents a never-before-seen majority for a presidential candidate and while it could of course change before the election takes place, barring a major scandal the Democrats are pretty much assured of four more years.

            Why is that not Catholic obscurantist nonsense? But then previously you had said that elections are what counts, only then to call congressional elections that falsify your theory bogus.

            Discrediting sceptics via character assassination and accusations of prejudice and anti-Catholic hatred.

            Clearly not, as any reader can see. You’ve made a range of unpleasant accusations against me, which are simply demonstrably false. I have shown the evidence contradict them and that the logic on which they are based is erroneous and inconsistent. As for the prejudice element, you gave me that yourself, firstly by making such unfounded and false accusations on the basis of no evidence whatsoever, and by the kinds of comments you have made:

            Like all Christians you project your beliefs onto others and create a fantasy that bears no relation to the reality of the world around you.

            the continuing marginalization of religion in public life there is exactly what I would wish for.

            Indeed there is no logic in your position at all. Just the usual preposterous claims of a fantasist.

            Any claim to the contrary is not based on evidence, but rather on prejudice and, I suspect, a general feeling of animus against anyone who isn’t Catholic and won’t condemn gays, women who won’t submit to their husbands and all other categories of “sinner” to hell fire and damnation.

            It’s typical Catholic obscurantist nonsense. Discrediting sceptics via character assassination and accusations of prejudice and anti-Catholic hatred.

            we can also sense the malice you feel towards anyone who challenges you.

            That’s what it all boils down to in the end: malice. It drips from everything you write. What a religion! Hatred and contempt trying to masquerade as love and concern. It’s beyond pitiable.

            Anyone who looks at what you say, particularly in the light of the evidence that I have given will draw the same conclusion: you are deeply prejudiced against people of faith and Catholics in particular. Your own comments are evidence of that – I don’t need to add an argument for it, it is sufficient to quote your own posts.

          • Findaráto

            You may recollect how I stated that the predictions made on the CNN site may not bear any relation to what actually happens. This is because polling is a notoriously unreliable means of predicting the future.

            A president’s legacy is not decided during the closing months of his presidency. Only with the perspective offered by time will his reputation be made. The approvals ratings that you claim make Obama spectacularly unimpressive are mere snapshots that will not determine how history remembers him.

            How will he be remembered? As a two-term president, which in itself is a considerable achievement that immediately raises him above the level of a Carter or a Ford. They’ll remember the social advances made under his presidency, like equal marriage and the beginnings of reform of the health care system. They’ll remember his economic stimulus package that eased America through the worst of the recession brought about by previous administrations’ reckless economic policies. They’ll remember his elimination of Bin Laden and Gadaffi. They’ll remember how he saved the US auto industry and recapitalized the banks. In fact they’ll remember a lot of things that his critics in their rush to tarnish his legacy seem eager to forget.

            And there’s where you come in. Obama’s administration supports equal marriage and a woman’s right to make her own reproductive choices. This puts him in direct opposition to Catholic doctrine. So what does the Catholic propaganda machine as personified by you do? It trashes him and derides his legacy before he’s even left office. And thus the true face of Catholic obscurantism is revealed. If he’s not with you, he’s against you and his reputation must be trampled into the mud. Lies must be told. False witness must be borne. You’ll do and say anything to diminish an enemy. That’s how Catholicism works.

            What I say is not prejudice. If it were, I would have pre-judged, whereas my opinion of the Catholic Church is built upon personal experience of manipulative clerics and the campaigns of character assassination they mount against anyone who dares to question or oppose them. Just like you, if they can’t control, they set out to destroy, and when they fail, their fury knows no bounds. The god they claim to represent is surprisingly like them: proud, haughty, jealous, vengeful and bitter. This should come as no shock to anyone who’s ever had the misfortune to set foot in a Catholic church and been forced into dealing with sexually frustrated celibate psychopaths who use and abuse the people they claim to love and care for.

            I don’t believe in a god because I’ve never seen any evidence that such a being exists. But if he does, and as I am not in possession of all knowledge I can’t categorically deny the possibility no matter how unlikely I think it may be, one thing is sure: he can be nothing like the Catholic god. The Church worships a different master, one that it (and I refuse to call it “she” because to do so would be to dishonour all women) sees in the looking glass every day. It worships itself and its god and all the secondary characters in the fiction it weaves are no more than decoys or lures that serve to subjugate people to its will. Or rather “served”, the past tense being appropriate now that the West has largely shaken off its parasitic presence.

            Call my attitude prejudice if you will. I call it bitter experience. And go right ahead and lambast and denounce me. I’ve heard it all before from more eloquent tongues than yours. You say nothing new. You offer no convincing proofs of anything except your desire to dominate, manipulate and control. And when you don’t get your way, watch out for the accusations and the spite. Your imaginary god hath no fury like a priest scorned.

            You must be pretty busy these days: so many sinners to hate, despise and defame, Obama included. So little time…

          • Albert

            I am indeed very busy – so busy I am not even going to read this. It just looks like something you needed to get off your chest, and I hope you are feeling better.

          • Findaráto

            Given that my remark about you being busy came at the very end of my post, you clearly have read it and are merely claiming not to have as yet another way of expressing your disdain and contempt. Very honest. Very Christian…

            Could you be any more of a clerical stereotype? When you can scrape up enough mud to fling, you fling it with all your might. But when there’s no mud within scraping distance, you shift tactics and feign Olympian indifference as if your opponent isn’t even worthy of your notice.

            Anglicans take note. A better demonstration of the Catholic attitude to skeptics and heretics would be harder to find. First try to twist their words and misrepresent them. Then try to shout them down. Then stick your nose in the air and pretend you don’t have time to waste on them.

            The problem is they can’t burn us any more, so sending us to Coventry is the next best thing. Unfortunately for them we outnumber them considerably, so they end up in Coventry themselves, which probably explains the appalling reputation of the place…

          • Albert

            Does it not occur to you that seeing how long your post was, I scrolled down to bottom to see how it concluded, without reading the rest? Do you never do that with a long piece of writing? Yes, I think it was not worthy of notice. I have repeatedly shown how you have made accusations which are demonstrably false and inconsistent. So yes, I’m not going to bother read it.

          • CliveM

            Hi Albert

            Boris seems to have two modes in this campaign, bombast for his speeches and bluster for the interview. He has been at his most unconvincing when asked questions. He should be doing better.

            Gove in contrast is doing well.

            I have found his performance unconvincing. Either because he is being found out and actually there is less there then meets the eye, or he doesn’t have his heart in it.

          • Albert

            I think that’s just what Boris is like on most things.

      • Old Nick

        Is Mr. Johnson not the great-grandson of a minster in the last Ottoman government ?

        • CliveM

          I believe so.

  • why David Cameron thinks they deserve to be ‘at the top table of European politics’ is something of a mystery

    Cameron and many of his EU colleagues (former Communist countries excepted) hope that the admission of Turkey would be fatal to European Christianity, the culmination of a betrayal which began, in Britain, around 1950 with the arrival of Muslims from Pakistan. It is chilling to reflect on the depth of hatred there exists in the world for Christianity and for Europeans, one extending back two thousand years, the other a thousand.

  • preacher

    Cameron is doing what he does best – posturing ! He enjoys playing the great leader & statesman, but in truth it’s all an act, he is just the grindstone for the knives & swords of others – sparks & noise but little else. A usable commodity, they will use & support him in a patronising sort of way, why ? Because he’s useful to them.
    Every circus needs a clown, unfortunately for us he’s top of the bill at the moment in the Circ-EU-s.
    If Turkey gets in it will have nothing to do with him, ringleader Merkel will be the one with open arms (if she’s finished fawning on Obama, the guy who wants us to lose our independence after the U,S fought a war to be independent from us a while back).
    If there’s one thing about Boris I like, it’s that he’s got passion & fight in him, Cameron just seeks to bask in the reflected glory of others.
    Turkey at the top table of the E.U ? That could turn out to be a cuckoo’s egg in the E.U nest box, a bit of a shock when it hatches though, could cause a scramble to leave or, bring matters to boiling point, after all Erdogan has some experience of poaching – or maybe leave Cameron with egg on his face ? With him on their side, they could end up well stuffed ! Out in the Cold Turkey should be the response.

  • Dreadnaught

    Excellent post Cranny and at you behest I offer the following:

    The new Ottoman-German Alliance
    in order to force full compliance
    murdered freedom of speech,
    put dissent out of reach
    while pledging their nations’ affiance

    But their history they’d rather forget
    Of the Jews and the Kurds and the rest
    Genocide in Armenia?
    collective amnesia
    Should never be put to the test

    Frau Merkel and Tyipp Erdogan
    Have worked out this wonderful plan
    lock anyone up
    who upsets us enough
    and we’ll bring out the new Taliban

    So men get your bums in the air
    and girls cover up, we don’t care
    So its not European
    you’ll be no longer seen
    and most certainly you’ll not be heard.

    Bum-Bum!

    • Rule Britannia
      The British ruling class
      Bend over serfs, and
      Take it up the ****.

  • len

    What game is Cameron playing?. Cameron is either part of some sort of’ ‘elitist agenda’ for Europe or is he just blundering about with no clue as to what he is doing?. I have no idea as to which applies to David Cameron an I suspect not many know which answer is correct?.
    But what seems to be happening in the West today is a ‘drawing together’ of some of the fragmented forms of Christianity( the RCC and Protestant Churches) and a future movement of these towards reconciliation with Islam?. With the Islamic presence ever growing in Europe this matter will become one of some urgency.

    A new form of religion is being created which is named(rather appropriately) ‘Chrislam’
    an apostate form of Christianity joined with Islam which denies the divinity of Christ (all in the name of ‘unity’ of course )

    When(not’ if ‘) Turkey joins the EU a ‘form of religion’ will be needed which allows compromise between Christianity and Islam and those who proclaim the divinity of Christ will be ostracised and probably imprisoned as ‘troublemakers’.

    • Merchantman

      Correct-There are many people who want a form of Christianity but without Jesus Christ (The corner stone or the stumbling block). This is Anti-Christ.

  • Politically__Incorrect

    Turkey knows it has the EU over a barrel thanks to the flow of migrants. This is just a foretaste of what will happen if an Islamic country gets a foothold in Brussels. It is also another illustration (if one were needed) of the moral bankruptcy of the EU and it’s leaders. Where Islam is concerned they are supine, and easily betray their own principles. One can imagine what demands Erdogan wiould be making if he was able to influence European law and social policy. Turkey should never be allowed to join the EU unless it submit to civilised values of tolerance and freedom. If it can’t, then it should stay out.

    As to Cameron, well at least we are free to openly criticise this dipstick of a PM.

    • Albert

      Meanwhile people will vote to remain because Obama says we won’t get a quick trade agreement with the US…

      • Politically__Incorrect

        Like turkeys voting for Christmas (pun intended)

        • Albert

          It is bizarre that a debate that should be about politics and democracy etc. is so dominated by economics.

          You’d think people would have learnt after the last time, and indeed after the mess of the Eurozone: the EU is not primarily a financial organisation, it is a political institution, which uses finance to advance its political aims. And if economics and politics go in different directions, they will follow their political agenda at the expense of the financial element.

          • Politically__Incorrect

            With economics it is easier to talk over peoples heads and bombard them with figures and concepts which they find all the more alarming because they don’t fully understand them. I’d say it’s all part of “Project Fear”. If the remainers talked about issues like freedom, border controls, and security, they’d find themselves a bit tongue-tied as the EU has little reassurance to offer on these.

          • Albert

            Absolutely. I think the Leave side need to spend more time telling us what the EU is. Because I didn’t know much about the EU, I decided to read three books on the subject, covering between them, all perspectives. I’m genuinely shocked and even worried by the democratic power that has been given away. I think I would be prepared to pay almost any economic price to get out of the EU. Of course, the lack of democracy has a tendency to come with an economic price – just ask the Greeks.

          • Anton

            Which three books, out of interest, please; and why those?

          • Albert

            Pro: Hugo Dixon The In/Out Question arguing the EU needs reforming but we should stay in regardless.
            Middle: Roger Bootle The Trouble with Europe arguing that if we can’t reform Europe we should come out (it was published before Cameron’s failure)
            Daniel Hannan Why Vote Leave? arguing that the EU is incapable of reform and therefore we should come out.

            The odd thing is that each book (even Dixon’s) basically admitted that the EU is a bit crap (or in Hannan’s case that it is complete crap).

            These reason for these three books:

            Bootle: because it was the only book in the library on the topic! Dixon, because it was a the best value for money arguing in favour (amusingly, I noted that pro-EU books are hard to find, and tend to be less value for money. A metaphor perhaps.)
            Hannan: because no one seems as articulate, and informed as he on this topic. It’s a superb book, and it will cure you of any desire to stay in.

            The choice also gave me a cross spectrum of writers: Dixon’s a journalist specialising in economics, Bootle is an economist, and Hannan, of course, is a politician.

          • Anton

            Thank you. I’ve read none of those, but have read the first edition of Christopher Booker and Richard North’s history of the EU, The Great Deception. It is a genuine work of history to academic standard, and I regard the first edition as better than the second, which junked some of the older detail to include the European Constitution – the Giscard project that got voted down and resurfaced in bits, partly as the Lisbon Treaty. But the devil was in some of that older detail.

          • Albert

            That’s really interesting, thank you. I was thinking of getting hold of that. I will give it some thought. So many books to read, so little time…!

          • Anton

            I feel the same… but I intend to do some writing too.

          • Albert

            Good for you!

          • Albert

            Unless there has been an astonishingly effective campaign from the Leavers, deception really does seem to be the word for the EU.

          • At 2:58 mins he informs us “that it’s true that there has been a slight reduction in the amount of EU legislation flowing over the last year, but this is because all the really contentious stuff has been put in the fridge until after the UK referendum.

            The proposals on harmonising social security, the ruinous port services directive that was pulled from the vote just before it went through so as to spare British public opinion in the run up to the referendum. The new rules for a higher budget all will come out in a rush should we make the mistake of voting to remain on the 23rd June”

            Dan Hannan on: Why the EU will never give powers back

          • Albert

            Dan Hannan is excellent. I heard him speak once and thought him far and away the best speaker I can remember – it’s the old style oratory, but with a remarkable combination of real facts.

          • Anton

            Who can forget his shredding of Gordon Brown at the European parliament in March 2009?

          • Old Nick

            That’s Marlborough for you

          • Pubcrawler

            He is indeed. But he does have a history of support for Turkey’s EU membership.

            I’m not sure that circle has yet been squared.

          • Albert

            Mmm…he may well do, but this video is not evidence of it, it is evidence that Hannan objects to the EU’s inconsistency on the question of Turkey. If he does support that accession (and I suspect he does) I would wonder what his reasons are, given that he thinks we should come out.

          • Pubcrawler

            Agreed it’s not good evidence, just the first thing I could find approximately relevant. The fuller case was in one of his blog posts in the Telegraph years ago. Chances of finding that again slim, I’m afraid.

          • Merchantman

            If we vote remain this time; it’ll take a war to get out next.

          • Albert

            I worry we won’t be able to get out in the future – it will become structurally impossible to do so. Indeed, even if we vote to come out this time, I wonder if the EU will accept it – the EU hasn’t accepted a referendum opposed to EU policy since 1982! For this reason, it is better to vote to come out even if you want to stay in, because it seems likely that they will try to change the “reform” and then ask us again. So the deal will be better the second time.

          • Merchantman

            I find it amazing how much our politicians have ceded since 1945. Of course 3 or 4 shots at self destructive bankruptcy haven’t helped.
            We urgently need a new political class which at least like the British people and do all they can to promote them. isn’t this what Democracy is about?

          • Albert

            Tony Benn and Enoch Powell called this right, at the very beginning. Our politicians have given away powers which they had no right to give away. Now they don’t tell us what they have done.

          • Dreadnaught

            As Clinton said ‘Its the economy – Stoopid!’

          • Albert

            One of the reasons of course that the City supported appeasement, even after Munich – it’s the economy stupid. Except sometimes, it isn’t. It’s much more important than that.

          • Coniston

            ‘This month, in March, an official audit reported that EU auditors refuse to sign off more than £100 billion ($144 billion) of EU spending. The Brussels accounts have not been given the all-clear for 19 years in a row’.

            ‘There is a joke going around the internet it how the European Union works (or doesn’t):

            Pythagoras’s theorem – 24 words.

            Lord’s Prayer – 66 words.

            Archimedes’s Principle – 67 words.

            10 Commandments – 179 words.

            Gettysburg address – 286 words.

            U.S. Declaration of Independence – 1,300 words.

            U.S. Constitution with all 27 Amendments – 7,818 words.

            EU regulations on the sale of cabbage – 26,911 words.’

            – Gatestone. See
            http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/7774/uk-eu-brexit

          • bluedog

            One observes a dangerous symmetry. Islam masquerades as a religion yet practices political control. The EU masquerades as an economic unit yet practices political control. A marriage made in Hell.

          • Albert

            Yes, this is true, except that I am not sure how much the EU does masquerade as an economic unit rather than a political system. On the continent, they seem to be quite honest and open about it. It’s only here, starting with people like Heath, that we have this view of it as a trading bloc. What kind of trading bloc needs a parliament? Is there any other such system in the world?

      • Dreadnaught

        Obama is on the way out in November and lining himself up with the Ttip crowd. He is the lowest ranking President of the modern era; why should we give any house-room to his drivel?

        • Albert

          Quite – but I bet the opinion polls will show the effect.

        • DanJ0

          But what does Hillary think?

          • Dreadnaught

            She thinks about the money flowing back to the US.

      • Old Nick

        I recall last time around we were told that if we had not voted to remain, the Americans would not have sent us an ambassador with the kleos of Mr. Elliott Richardson (the double T and double L, from whence they come no man can tell). Of course you remember him – a Really Important American. No comment

      • Royinsouthwest

        He is coming to the end of his term as president. It does not really matter what he thinks.

        • Albert

          Quite and the fact that he ran our country down in our own capital, with the full support of the PM puts him in a bad light. After all we have done together, and the support we gave the US after 911, his remarks were frankly dishonourable. Most Americans are patriotic, and often pretty pro-British, they won’t have taken kindly to that sort of thing and hopefully will have recognized he got what he deserved.

          Moreover the trade deal thing is exaggerated. There isn’t an EU trade deal. The reason there is a queue is because the EU (and it forebears) has been in existence for nearly 60 years and hasn’t come up with one. So all Obama’s remarks have done is make the EU look bad, Cameron look bad, and the US look bad.

      • Merchantman

        The next president trumps everything Obama hopes for.

  • There was once a Turk called Erdogan
    Whose ego was dented by a comedian
    ……………………
    ……………………
    ……………………

    • Politically__Incorrect

      He failed to laugh at the funny remark
      and ordered the krauts to collar him
      ………………………………….
      ……………………

      • Uncle Brian

        Not rude enough! The Spectator specifies: The aim of the competition is to be as filthy and insulting as possible about Recep Erdogan.

        • Ok, how’s this, then?

          Erdogan, Erdogan,
          Sat alone on a rug.
          Then along came Cameron
          And gave him a hug.

          Not Erdogan’s horses,
          Nor even his goat
          Could pry Dave’s face
          Clear of his stoat.

          • Politically__Incorrect

            weasel words 🙂

          • Gave him a “tug” would be ruder ….

    • len

      Your’e names aVil all going on ze list.

  • chiefofsinners

    The President of Turkey is Erdogan
    His politics stink like a turdogan
    If you vote to remain
    Free speech will be slain
    So vote leave on June 23rd-ogan

  • There was once a chap called Erdogan
    Whose penis was such a small organ
    All over Turkey
    He’d try to get perky
    But alas a dead horse he was floggin’

    • sarky

      There once was a fellow named jack
      Who with insults just wouldn’t hold back
      The silly old burk
      Insulted a turk
      And went for a kebab and never came back

      • Then, there was a chap named Sarky.
        He berated our Jack very snarky.
        But Erdie the Turk
        Said to Cam’ron with a smirk,
        “Yo, bee-ach, haul me them two arses
        Here to Turkey.”

        • sarky

          There once was a fellow named barzel,
          Who couldn’t rhyme snarky and Turkey that well,
          These lines from our nation,
          Got lost in translation,
          But at least, for a Canadian, he could spell.

          • What cheek and what nerve
            Hath that Sarky.
            To befuddle our minds
            With malarkey.

            Though “Turkey” and “Sarky”
            Look different when written,
            They rhyme just as well
            In Canada as in Britain.

          • Findaráto

            There once was a Canadian painter
            Whose talent grew fainter and fainter
            As his patrons grew fewer
            Was Sark’ the wrongdoer
            Lambasted with terms ever quainter

            And then to Sark’s great relief
            Came Findaráto of agnostic belief
            He slapped down the painter
            With a bill of attainter
            Signed by Queenie without any grief

            “One is tired,” did old Queenie say
            “Of these dreadful colonials who pray
            For the wreck of our subjects
            No matter how abject
            One wishes they’d just go away!”

            “‘Tis unfair!” the painter did cry
            As the gallows at the Burn of Ty
            Did hove into view
            “You can’t do this to a Jew!
            Israel will avenge me if you try!”

            But dangle he did from the rope
            Despite last-minute pleas from Pope
            “Please have pity on him
            Or I fear the goyim
            In the Holy Land will run out of hope!”

            And so it did come to pass
            That all because of one ass
            Of a Canadian painter
            Christianity became fainter
            In the land of its birth, no more Mass!

          • William Lewis

            Findy was windy
            In rhyme and prose
            As his comments grew longer
            So did his nose, his nose
            His comments grew along with his nose.

            Tutti was frutti
            And wont to pose
            With a manner most snooty
            Like the shape of his nose, his nose
            It matched the shape of his nose.

            Linus was pissy
            Down to his toes
            Of pissoirs most picky
            But he couldn’t hold his nose, his nose
            He just could not hold his nose.

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            Findo the bile-o-gram sender,
            Was in truth a bit of a bender.
            A part of a goat
            Got stuck in his throat
            And made his oesophagus tender.

          • William Lewis

            Goodness!

          • Pubcrawler

            *splutter!*

          • Findaráto

            Mrs Proudie that notorious Trollope
            In desperate need of a whallop
            Went for a grope
            With poor Mr Slope
            And got herself vaginal polyps

            Yes those vaginal polyps do hinder
            Her efforts to find sex on Tinder
            When push comes to shove
            Her old tunnel of love
            Is dried up and burnt like a cinder

            The frustration she feels as she sees
            That it burns like hot fire when she pees
            Under that crinoline
            Retribution for sin
            Has her living in purgatory

            The moral of this tale is quite clear
            ´Twill be cancer when next she must smear
            A trickle of dust
            From her tunnel of rust
            On a slide at which doctors will peer

            The lesson to learn is quite simple
            Mrs Proudie should take to the wimple
            And try to repent
            Of a life so ill-spent
            In idolatrous Protestant temples

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            mildly amusing, rather derivative and over-long…but I expect the best you can do. Bravo!

          • Findaráto

            Derivative? Says the person (we have no proof of gender) whose literary efforts can be summed up as a pantomime dame doing Trollope?

            Playing at the Regis in Bognor next Christmas, are you? One can imagine the script:

            Dame Proudie: “”Oo ‘er Mr Slope, is that the bishop’s crozier under your surplice or are you just pleased to see me?”

            Mr Slope: “Come, come, dear lady!”

            Dame Proudie, with a broad wink: “I fully intend to!”

            Mr Slope: “Enough of this frivolity! Do you not know the people are starving? Eggs are going up!”

            Dame Proudie: “That’ll surprise a few chickens…”

            Comic drum roll as Dame Proudie’s crinoline rides up revealing Union Flag knickerbockers…

            A glittering career in panto awaits you. Quentin Crisp as Elizabeth I, eat your heart out!

          • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

            Again, too long…but keep at it, you will improve.

          • CliveM

            Don’t you bank on it, people have been telling him for years.

          • Findaráto

            Oh come on, Widow Twankey. “Too long”? Can it ever be too long for you?

            “‘Oo ‘er Findaráto, me ´Obnobs is gone all gooey!”

            Sounds about right.

          • There once was a Frenchie named Linus
            Poor soul, he couldn’t tell vaginas from arses
            One day in his haste
            He got covered in waste
            And now suffers chronic urethritis

          • chiefofsinners

            Findy our favourite agnostic
            Is less into slapstick than swastik
            No liking for Hebrews
            Despicable world views
            You’re summed up by this small acrostic.

          • Findaráto

            Be you Christian or Muslim or Jew
            There’s no difference from my point of view
            Your religious decisions
            Don’t shield you from derision
            And the victim card won’t protect you

    • Politically__Incorrect

      Time to cancel that holiday in Istanbul

      • chiefofsinners

        Say I’m behind the times if you like, but I prefer to call it Constantinople.

        • Uncle Brian

          Byzantium, surely.

          White founts falling in the Courts of the sun,
          And the Soldan of Byzantium is smiling as they run;
          There is laughter like the fountains in that face of all men feared,
          It stirs the forest darkness, the darkness of his beard,
          It curls the blood-red crescent, the crescent of his lips,
          For the inmost sea of all the earth is shaken with his ships.
          They have dared the white republics up the cape of Italy,
          They have dashed the Adriatic round the Lion of the Sea,
          And the Pope has cast his arms abroad for agony and loss,
          And called the kings of Christendom for swords about the Cross.

          • Old Nick

            Don John of Austria.

        • bluedog

          Make that Occupied Constantinople.

    • Anton

      Make sure you book your ticket for the Midnight Express…

    • Royinsouthwest

      Don’t go to Germany. A comedian there was arrested, with Merkel’s approval, for insulting remarks he had made about Erdogan. In fact, if Britain votes to remain in the EU and Turkey is admitted, you might find a group of British policemen turning up at your front door with a European Arrest Warrant!

      • Ecckkkk …… I’m going to claim Jewish citizenship then.

        • Merchantman

          There is an alt frau called Merkel
          whose dream is a star spangled circle
          in the process of which
          all the borders did hitch
          to let enter Turks d*l*ght*ng most purple

  • sarky

    As an aside, anyone know what happened to Gillan Scott?

    • chiefofsinners

      Criticised Erdogan. ’nuff said.

    • CliveM

      I was beginning to wonder as well.

    • chiefofsinners

      Beamed up?

    • Don’t panic, I still exist! No beaming up or anything like that. I’ve had to drastically reduce my commitments over the last few months due to one of my immediate family suffering from a severe illness. I do hope to be back sometime soon..

      • Anton

        May God be with you and yours.

      • sarky

        Glad to hear it ☺ and I wish your family member well.

      • len

        Hope to see you back soon, wish your family member well.

  • chiefofsinners

    A song for Europe, by Dave C:

    Camer, Camer, Camer, Camer, Camer chameleon,
    It’s time to go, it’s time to go.
    Leaving would be easy if your colours were blue not green
    Your words are full
    Of Istan-bull

    You’re a man without conviction… etc.

    • Anton

      Not even a conviction for parking on double yellow lines?

      • chiefofsinners

        I believe that in the Bullingdon Club the problem was white lines, not yellow ones. Allegedly.

  • Anton

    He looks like Lee van Cleef.

    • chiefofsinners

      Touch of the Lord Lucans about him. Now that would be a story.

      • bluedog

        Perhaps Mr Barzel can provide us with a photo-shopped image of DC with a Lucanesque moustache. Wife and nanny standing in the background.

  • bluedog

    It’s all part of containing Christian and Orthodox Russia, Your Grace. The only surprise is that Obama’s recent epistle to the British on the benefits of the EU didn’t include an appeal for Turkish membership of the EU. Turkey blocks the southern expansion of Russia, the westward expansion of the Iranians and is a member of NATO. As Obama explained, NATO and the EU are indissoluble, which came as news to this communicant and presumably all others.

    We’ve been this way before, of course. We fought the Crimea War for exactly the same misguided reasons. However, in 1919, British and French forces occupied Constantinople which was at the time quite small and with a population that still included a very large Greek minority. There remained too the Greek settlements down the Ionian coast that had survived intact under 400 years of Ottoman rule. So what did we do? We simply withdraw leaving the Greeks to fight an inept and disastrous war against the forces of the nascent Turkish state lead by Ataturk. What an opportunity missed! With Franco-British support for Greece, the Hagia Sophia could have been restored as a Greek cathedral and Western civilisation revitalised on both sides of the Bosporus. Now 100 years later we are asked to capitulate to neo-Ottoman policies that are designed to reassert Turkish rule in Eastern Europe, with free movement of the Turkish population to cement the prize to Ankara. Utter folly.

    Cameron is by far the most dangerous man in recent British history, excepting Blair, both shallow fools.

    • You’re right Cameron is a dangerous fool and with very bad judgment.

    • IanCad

      What, as conservatives, shall we do?

      • bluedog

        Two things. Firstly the parliamentary Conservative Party needs to understand that if the numbers are there, they must sack Cameron as PM and replace him with Boris before 23rd June. Your reservations about Boris are noted, but there would appear to be no-one else with the required combination of attributes. Anyway, then the second thing, Brexit, is assured. Mrs May’s comments about the European Court of Human Rights suggests that she is a nationalist and not a supranationalist at heart. A high-level defection to the Brexit camp from the Cabinet at this stage would be an important catalyst in bringing Cameron’s premiership to a close. Mrs May could possibly be that catalyst if offered a suitably prestigious role in the Johnson Cabinet. Perhaps Mrs May has metaphorically dropped her handkerchief to see who notices and what her suitors may offer.

        • IanCad

          I agree bluedog (and Clive); there could be a wholesale Tory defection to the “Out” camp. However we still have the idiotic referendum to face, and that I’m afraid, will subordinate liberty and self-determination to the myth of financial security.
          There are some issues far too important to be left for the public to decide

        • Merchantman

          Germans need to do ditto and sack Merkel before they do more irreparable damage to the Europe they hope to rule. Maybe they think a Muslim Europe will be more manageable than a Christian one that sabotaged their two previous attempts.

          • bluedog

            One suspects that the gap between the German political elite and the German electorate is wide and getting wider by the day. The volk are not so stupid as to believe the rubbish about multiculti that they have been fed. They will react.

      • CliveM

        You look at the front bench and it’s enough to make you despair. There isn’t a stand out candidate. I also suspect, in addition to all his other weaknesses, Boris wouldn’t get the backing of the parliamentary party.

        Boris is undeniably bright and popular, but he lacks substance as a politician.

    • David

      You are right. Cameron is a shallow fool, and therefore a danger to this country.

  • HedgehogFive

    If Turkey joins the EU, it won’t just be Turkey but an open barn door to all those ethnically Turcoman states stretching all the way to China.

    • prompteetsincere

      + Ezekiel 38:1ff. note well, v. 6 “Gomer*, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah** of the north quarters. and all his bands: and many people with thee,” * Germany **Turkey

    • Dreadnaught

      It won’t even require Turkey joining the EU. Chinese trains are bound straight for Europe via Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus. They will be unloaded in Poland and distributed to their final destinations.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-28289319

  • There is a President from Turkey
    Whose sexual interests are frankly quite quirky
    He once knew a man
    Did our dear Erdogan
    And now it’s all that makes him feel perky.

  • Old Nick

    It is worth mentioning that the Meryem Ana Kilisesi in the SW corner of the Old CIty of Diyarbakir (Roman Amida) is what is left of a church that has been used for Christian worship in Syriac continuously since probably the 5th, certainly the 6th century – well before Islam existed.

  • Erdogan, the Sultan of Turkey
    Turned into a hippie at Berkeley.
    He smoked a fat blunt,
    Shared it with no one, that —-
    But Cameron still smoked his jerky.

  • William Lewis

    The Sultan of Turkey, Erdogan
    Told Merkel, “I’m in need of some lovin'”
    The treacherous Kraut
    Was happy to spout
    “Of course! Where should I be rubbin’?”

    • May Jack suggest one very minor amendment?

      “Of course! Where should I be a rubbin’?”

      • William Lewis

        Not sure it scans as well, Jack. But perhaps it’s a matter of emphasis.

        • We can discuss it in a cell in Turkey.

          • William Lewis

            Yes. We’ll have plenty of time to develop our epic sagas.

  • Politically__Incorrect

    Slightly off-topic but I’ve just been reading about the Labour MP Naz Shah. She has tweeted that her solution to the Palestinian conflict is to deport all Israelis to America. One can imagine the outrage if someone suggested deporting all muslins from this country to Turkey. It seems if you’re muslim you can get away with hate crime, especially anti-Semitism. Labour is rapidly becoming a (National) Socialist party

    • Merchantman

      Did yesterday.

  • prompteetsincere

    The prelude to this impending post-EU postlude:”Barack’s” April 2009 ‘Apology’ Tour for the US; by-passing Israel, first to Istanbul’s Blue Mosque – shoes off;
    “Dave” is but offering the shoehorn.

  • Royinsouthwest

    Never mind. We can all be confident that Cameron will do something to change Turkish policies. Look what he did about the Polish government when he was still only the leader of the opposition.

    Conservatives to send homosexual MP on gay rights march. The Telegraph, 22 April 2010.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/7616897/Conservatives-to-send-homosexual-MP-on-gay-rights-march.html

    The most senior homosexual member of David Cameron’s front bench team will be sent on a gay rights march in Poland to encourage the party’s European Conservative allies to become less prejudiced.

  • Poor countries like Afghanistan had to pay for ‘harbouring’ the Taliban – trained by Americans when it suited them. But Saudi Arabia is an important ‘friend and ally’, and their role in 9/11 ought to be kept secret from the American public, according to George Bush. Turkey deserves to be in the EU – for its role in ‘tackling’ the ISIS. Islam is a religion of peace; and its tenets should be taught in Spanish schools. It seems that the more certain Muslim countries do to wreck the stability and security of Europe, the more western leaders like them.

    There are only 3 possibilities:

    1. Leaders like Cameron are extremely naïve and therefore unfit to govern,
    2. They know exactly what the consequences are, but don’t care.
    3. They are part of the whole effort to Islamise Europe; Cameron working in tandem with Merkel, Obama, King Salman and Erdogan to achieve the desired goal.

    Where are all the protests and the shocked headlines? What is most shocking, however, is not that Cameron and his ilk can say these things, but public apathy, and the indifference of the mainstream media.

    http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/04/06/spain-will-teach-koran-schools-counter-islamic-extremism/
    http://www.breitbart.com/london/2016/04/23/tory-mp-on-saudi-payroll-accused-of-being-shill-for-regime/
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/finding-discussion-and-narrative-regarding-certain-sensitive-narrative-matters-saudi-arabia-911-11-a6999091.html

  • Anton

    in November 2014 Cameron’s government reconfirmed British support for the European Arrest Warrant. Doing so was not an obligation under any treaty and was contrary to the wishes of many of his own backbenchers. This was at the same time he was saying he wanted the repatriation of political power from the EU.

    The consequence is that Brits can be extradited to other EU countries that do not have Habeas Corpus without any evidence being produced in any court.

    Thanks, Dave.

    • Albert

      The European Arrest Warrant is certainly a concern. However, this is an example of how the EU should work. Our elected representatives should be deciding these things, not our unelected unrepresentatives in Brussels.

      • Anton

        Agreed, but it is not the EU that my post was against.

        • Albert

          It was against Dave. You want to be careful doing that…

  • len

    Whatever policies western leaders are following regarding Islam and the migration of Muslims into Europe is ‘a mystery’ that none of them have dared explain to the electorate.
    After centuries of warfare those behind the EU decided to create a’ United States of Europe’ which they have created by deception.
    To achieve this aim some aspects of society needed(in the view of the founders of the EU)to go through some radical changes.
    National Identity, Sovereignty, Religion, Power of individual Governments to act independently , all these had to be stripped of any power and rendered ‘harmless’. The EU has gone a long way in achieving this goal.
    ‘Open borders’ have had the affect of breaking down and disrupting national identity, the pursuit of’ sexual freedom ‘and the promotion of homosexual lifestyles have devalued the family unit( a building block of a stable society)
    As In Europe so in America. Obama’s endorsement (and thinly veiled threat about trade links being suspended if the UK comes out ) is to reinforce the position of the elites in Europe.
    The migration of whole Muslim communities will further destroy national identities in the West and give’ a good reason’ for those in power to only allow a much watered down version of ‘Christianity’ which will be worse than useless (which I suppose is one of the main aims of those behind the EU . ‘ Divide and conquer’ should be the emblem emblazoned on the flag of the EU…

  • I wonder how many Remain voters even know that Istanbul used to be Constantinople, or how it changed it’s name, and what that meant….or gives a fig?

    I’m with the late Fred Phelps on this-Western Civilisation (formerly known as Christendom) has crossed too many lines, refused too many reproofs and has been at last given over to our destroyers.

    • Anton

      And it will be harder on the women, non-coincidentally.

      • Merchantman

        I think it is a question of provoking the young generation to think. That may not be an impossible dream but due to the so called progressive agenda and a PC in every bedroom it may be hard right now but not entirely impossible.
        I can remember certain striking things told to me as a student that certainly had an impact in the strength and validity of their anti cynical argument. We were all cynical then especially towards the older generation most of whom had literally at some point fought for their lives.
        Furthermore this caving in to Erdogan and his neo-islamic agenda has to be challenged. He is undoubtedly creating a halfway house for the ISIL thinkers and doers in his part of the world.
        I can think of no better place than Istanbul/Constantinople to remind the Turks forcibly that they are treading on the shoulders and graves of a far greater civilization than their own. It also serves as a reminder to the West that the future is an uncertain country unless you take good care of it and that the Gospel is an available salvation for them all.
        Yes and Merkel is bonkers.

        • HedgehogFive

          From an Anthology of Islamic Literature ed. James Kritzeck:

          referring to the times leading up to the Crusades:

          “The noble Arab and the supple Persian had given way to the barbarous and illiberal Turk.”

          • Pubcrawler

            At least one of those adjectives is debatable…

          • Uncle Brian

            If the intention is to apply the adjectives to the present-day Middle East, there’s something seriously wrong. For all his faults, Erdogan’s Turkey is still a less barbarous and less illiberal place than any Arab country or the ayatollahs’ Iran.

  • Anton

    We need a new political party that understands who our enemy is and does not comprise mainly football hooligans.

  • On in/out EU I recommend reading post by David Robertsom.

    https://theweeflea.com/2016/04/26/european-referendum-the-tipping-point/

  • Martin

    Um, pogrom I think is meant, not progrom.

    And have not our politicians often supped with the devil when they thought it to their advantage?