Below is an article that appeared in today’s Phileleftheros regarding statements made by Philip Gordon during the Senate confirmation hearing into his proposed appointment as assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasia. Gordon is a notorious pro-Turk zealot. Pro-Turk zealots seem to be taking over the State Department; not that here in Europe the Turkish sycophants are any less prominent. Yesterday, EU president, Jose Manuel Baroso, expressed the opinion to Turk president, Abdullah Gul, that Turkey’s EU course was independent of a solution to the Cyprus problem. Really? So, the fact that an EU candidate state refuses to recognise an EU member state and in fact has 40,000 troops stationed in that member state will have no bearing on the candidate’s application? (See report in Greek here).
Turkish occupation of Cyprus is just a ‘presence’
Washington: Turkish troops in the northern part of Cyprus do not comprise an ‘occupation’ force but are simply a ‘Turkish presence’, according to Philip Gordon, candidate for the post of assistant secretary of state for Europe, testifying yesterday before the Senate’s Foreign Relations Committee.
Gordon’s statement provoked strong reactions from Senators.
Senator Robert Menendez read out a previous statement made by Barack Obama, in which he referred to the need to end the occupation of Cyprus and asked Gordon if he agreed.
The former Clinton White House official and analyst for the Brookings Institute said: ‘The Turkish presence in the northern part of Cyprus is not accepted by the government of Cyprus and it is an issue for the negotiations [between Christofias and Talat] which we support.’
‘Therefore, you don’t consider it an occupation?’ asked the Democratic senator for New Jersey. ‘There are some experts and the government of Cyprus which considers it an occupation,’ replied Gordon.
During the confirmation hearing, Gordon said the upgrading of relations with Turkey was of vital national importance to America and he refused to take a position on the Armenian genocide.