Commentary: Terrorist Attack Heightens Fears for the Future of Turkish Christians

Santa Maria Catholic Church

On Jan. 28, two terrorists wearing black balaclavas attacked Santa Maria Catholic Church in Istanbul, Turkey. The assailants entered the church as approximately 40 people were attending Mass. During the Liturgy of the Eucharist, the gunmen began firing. Tragically, Tuncer Cihan was killed. He was about to become a Christian, attended church regularly, and was described as “a good person.”

Thankfully, no one else was injured, as the terrorists fled due to one of the guns miraculously jamming.

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Pennsylvania Senate Candidate Oz Getting Criticism for 2018 Turkish Election Vote

Some security and foreign-policy experts are raising questions about a 2018 photograph showing Pennsylvania Senate candidate Mehmet Oz voting in that year’s Turkish presidential election.

Oz holds dual citizenship in in the United States and Turkey; his parents moved from the latter to the former in the 1960s. The celebrity doctor, who is running for Pennsylvania Senate with the support of former President Donald Trump, has promised that he will renounce his Turkish citizenship if he wins retiring Republican Sen. Pat Toomey’s seat in November.

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Earthquake Strikes Turkish Coast and Greek Island, Killing 14

A strong earthquake struck Friday in the Aegean Sea between the Turkish coast and the Greek island of Samos, killing at least 14 people and injuring hundreds amid collapsed buildings and flooding, officials said.

A small tsunami struck the Seferihisar district south of Izmir, the city in western Turkey that was the worst affected, said Haluk Ozener, director of the Istanbul-based Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute.

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Turkey’s President Formally Makes Hagia Sophia a Mosque

The president of Turkey on Friday formally converted Istanbul’s sixth-century Hagia Sophia back into a mosque and declared it open for Muslim worship, hours after a high court annulled a 1934 decision that had made the religious landmark a museum.

The decision sparked deep dismay among Orthodox Christians. Originally a cathedral, Hagia Sophia was turned into a mosque after Istanbul’s conquest by the Ottoman Empire but had been a museum for the last 86 years, drawing millions of tourists annually.

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Americans Not ‘Buying’ Democrats’ Impeachment Narrative, Rep. Burchett Tells C-SPAN

U.S. Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN-02) on Wednesday appeared on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” call-in program to discuss the impeachment inquiry. He blamed a “cocky attitude” among some in the State Department and said they are upset over not being involved in President Donald Trump’s conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

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Commentary: Turkey’s Invasion of Syria Tests NATO Alliance, Advises Caution

On Oct. 6, the Office of the White House Press Secretary released a statement that after a telephone conversation by President Donald Trump with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that “Turkey will soon be moving forward with its long-planned operation into Northern Syria. The United States Armed Forces will not support or be involved in the operation, and United States forces, having defeated the ISIS territorial ‘Caliphate,’ will no longer be in the immediate area.”

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Commentary: Lindsey Graham Gets the Kurds and Syria Backwards

“We can’t abandon the Kurds now,” said Senator Lindsey Graham during a recent appearance on Fox & Friends. “When Turkey goes into Syria, they’re not going in to fight ISIS. They’re going in to kill the Kurds because in their eyes they’re more of a threat to Turkey than ISIS,” the South Carolina Republican said on “Fox & Friends. According to reporting by William Cummings for USA TODAY Graham added that “every military person” has told Trump not to pull the troops out.

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Washington Correspondent, Neil McCabe from One America News Network Talks to the Tennessee Star Report About President Trump’s Recent Syria Decision

On Tuesday’s Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 am to 8:00 am – host Leahy welcomed weekly guest and One America News Network’s, Neil McCabe to the show to talk about President Trump’s recent decision to remove US troops from Syria.

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Sen. Blackburn Urges President Trump to Protect Kurdish Allies as America Looks to Leave Syria

U.S. Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) on Thursday sent a letter urging President Donald Trump to protect the United States’ Kurdish partners in the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). Blackburn posted a copy of the letter on Twitter, tweeting, “This morning, I joined @SenDuckworth in writing a letter to the president to express the importance of protecting our Kurdish friends as the administration plans its withdrawal of American troops from Syria.” “The protection of our Kurdish friends and allies is in the national security interest of the United States,” said Blackburn. “The Kurds have been a reliable partner in the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS and we must not abandon them now.” Nashville is home to the largest Kurdish population of any city in the United States, Blackburn said. The letter comes as the administration considers a withdrawal of U.S. military forces from Syria. Blackburn and Duckworth are members of the Senate Armed Services Committee. The White House officially announced Dec. 19 that nearly 2,000 U.S. troops would leave Syria, Townhall reported. “Five years ago, ISIS was a very powerful and dangerous force in the Middle East, and now the United States has defeated the territorial caliphate. These…

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Turkish Court Orders Andrew Brunson Released After Four Witnesses Recant Testimony

by Chuck Ross   A Turkish court on Friday convicted American pastor Andrew Brunson of terrorism charges but ordered his release from house arrest, a decision that will allow him to return back to the U.S. During a court hearing, four government witnesses retracted their statements that Brunson had aided two organizations, the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, and the network of supporters of Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen. Brunson, 50, was arrested in October 2016 on claims that he supported the two groups. He was sentenced to three years in jail on Friday but released due to time served. The Turkish court also relaxed a travel ban against Brunson, allowing the North Carolina native to return home. Brunson and his wife had operated Christian churches in Turkey for 23 years until his arrest. Brunson’ case touched off a bitter diplomatic dispute between the U.S. and Turkey. The Trump administration pushed its Nato ally to release Brunson, arguing that the charges against him were bogus. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rejected those requests, saying publicly that he was using Brunson as a bargaining chip to force the U.S. to extradite Gulen, who is living in exile in Pennsylvania. The Trump administration…

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Commentary: Turkey’s Erdogan Is No Ally Of America

  by George Rasley, Editor Yesterday, President Trump met with Turkey’s Islamist President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. You will hear a lot in the establishment media, and maybe even some from the White House, talk about what an important “ally” Turkey is to the United States. Don’t believe it. It is true that Turkey is part of NATO and was once part of our bulwark against the old communist Soviet Union, but those days are long past. Today, Turkey’s government is part of the Islamist assault on the West and President Erdogan is one of the Muslim world’s leading advocates of cultural jihad and hijra – Muslim invasion by immigration. On April 2, 2016, a gigantic Ottoman style of mosque was opened in Lanham, Maryland by President Erdogan. The mosque, according to Turkish officials, is “one of the largest Turkish mosques built outside Turkey.” Funds to build it, as reported by the Turkish pro-government newspaper, Sabah, came from Turkey’s state-run Presidency of Religious Affairs, known as the Diyanet, as well as Turkish-American non-profit organizations. The mosque is actually part of a larger complex, commonly referred to as “Maryland kulliye.” A kulliye, as such Islamic compounds were called in Ottoman times,…

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