David Boyajian sends his analysis of Donald Trump’s unseemly relationship with Turkey and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Bidniz is bidniz, I guess.
Trump’s Turkish Problem
by David Boyajian
American presidents have habitually kowtowed to Turkish demands.
However, President Trump’s business investments in Turkey, Turkish-tainted associates, and baffling deference to President Erdogan have spawned an exceptionally troubling record.
That record could provide additional fodder for Trump’s Republican, Democratic, and Justice Department (DOJ) foes, especially as Turkey remains a rogue NATO member and supporter of international terrorism.
Below is a mere fraction of the dismal Trump-Turkish saga.
A Little Conflict of Interest
“I have a little conflict of interest” regarding Turkey, admitted Trump in 2015.
Indeed, since 2012, Trump Towers/Mall in Istanbul has earned him a reported $10 million in naming rights.
Mehmet Ali Yalcindag is Trump’s Turkish partner in that venture. He’s chaired the Turkey-U.S. Business Council (TAIK) — linked to the Turkish government — since 2018. He was also reportedly an intermediary between Berat Albayrak (Erdogan’s shady son-in-law) and Jared Kushner (Trump’s son-in-law).
In 2020, Yalcindag’s letters to Trump’s Agriculture, Commerce, and Energy secretaries lobbied for increased business with Turkey. Yalcindag conspicuously cc’d Trump, thereby apparently (and inappropriately) leveraging their business partnership.
From 2013 until late 2020, DC’s Mercury Public Affairs served as TAIK’s registered Turkish foreign agent.
Following Trump’s inauguration, Mercury hired his communications director, Bryan Lanza, and registered him as a Turkish agent. Ballard Partners, headed by top Trump fundraiser Brian Ballard, also soon became a Turkish agent.
Donald Jr.’s Post-Thanksgiving Turkey Trot
Donald Trump Jr. went hunting in Antalya, Turkey right after his father’s election.
Accompanied by an unnamed businessman — Yalcindag, allegedly — Donald Jr. bagged two wild goats.
The self-indulgent trip to a repressive country highlighted the Trump family’s Turkish blind spot.