Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stunned a group of hawkish Republican senators in the Oval Office on Wednesday by producing an iPad and playing what witnesses called a propaganda video portraying America’s Kurdish allies as terrorists.
A White House official told DailyMail.com on Thursday that ‘yes, we’re all talking about it. Erdoğan brought in some weak video that looked like a 10-year-old with iMovie could have done better.’
It cast two different groups of Kurds as terrorist aggressors: the YPG, which the United States funded in a war against the ISIS terror army, and the PKK, which the U.S. and Turkey both see as terrorists.
The iPad video drew little distinction between the two, according to the official. A second official said an aide to a senior officical in the room had ‘laughed out loud after the meeting—he said the footage looked like an ISIS propaganda film made by the guys from South Park.’
WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 13: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (center) made President Donald Trump and a group of Republican senators watch a crude propaganda film on his iPad that portrayed U.S. Kurdish allies as terrorists
Trump, pictured at a press conference that followed, stayed clear of the fireworks that followed the unexpected screening, largely letting senators fight it out with the Turkish president
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham (right) reportedly asked Erdoğan if he would like to see a Kurdish movie about atrocities he had committed
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham was unimpressed, accordign to Axios, asking Erdoğan: ‘Well, do you want me to go get the Kurds to make one about what you’ve done?’
The Turkish embassy in Washington did not respond to a request for comment on Thursday.
The Turkish president insisted during the Oval Office meeting, and in a tense joint press conference that followed, that his country had aggressivbely fought ISIS.
Graham pushed back, telling the website: ‘The Turkish narrative that they have done more to destroy ISIS, I rejected forcefully, and I let Turkey know that 10,000 SDF fighters, mostly Kurds, suffered, died or injured, in the fight against ISIS, and America will not forget that and will not abandon them.’
Trump has been less supportive, allowing Erdoğan a clear path to invade Kurdish-held northern Syrian territory by withdrawing U.S. forces.
Turkey is straining to avoid the threat of U.S. sanctions for buying a missile defense system from Russia instead of a comparable product from an American contractor.
Erdoğan raised eyebrows and blood pressures during an awkward joint press conference with Trump, blasting Congress for recognizing the century-old Armenian genocide and deemanding the extradition of an Islamic cleric he blames for a coup attempt in 2016
Erdoğan wants to purchase a fleet of F-35 fighter jets from Lockheed Martin, a complicated ask since the Russian S-400 missiles are thought to be incompatible with the aircraft.
The missile purchase, plus Erdoğan’s military push into Syria, has created enemies among Republicans in Congress.
Sen. Ted Cruz said in a statement that he ‘made clear to President Erdoğan that so long as Turkey continues to procure or deploy the S-400 air defense system from Russia, the U.S. will not sell F-35 fighter jets to Turkey.’
Other senators in the Oval Office backed up Cruz and Graham, including Foreign Relations Chair Jim Risch.
Erdoğan raised eyebrows and blood pressures during an awkward joint press conference with Trump on Wednesday, blasting Congress for recognizing the century-old Armenian genocide and deemanding the extradition of an Islamic cleric he blames for a coup attempt in 2016.
He told reporters in Turkey on Thursday after his return home that he was open to adding U.S.-made missiles to his arsenal but wouldn’t return the Russian arms.
‘We said we can purchase Patriots,’ he said, but ‘we regard the proposal to completely remove the S-400s as a meddling in our sovereign rights.’
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'A 10-year-old with iMovie could have done better': White House aides mock anti-Kurdish propaganda film that Turkey's president made Donald Trump and Republican senators watch during Oval Office meeting have 1101 words, post on www.dailymail.co.uk at November 14, 2019. This is cached page on Travel News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.