A Turkish columnist at a pro-government newspaper celebrated Hitler in a recent column on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and demanded that Turkey’s Jewish leaders apologize for "genocide" committed by the "‘Zionist/Jewish terror base’ that is Israel," according to a translation of the controversial op-ed.
Turkish journalist Faruk Kose, writing recently in the pro-government Turkish Daily, demanded that the country’s chief rabbi apologize "in the name of the Jews" for "Israel’s genocide in Gaza," where Israeli military personal have launched a ground operation to root out Hamas militants.
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Kose praised Hitler, engaged in anti-Semitic rhetoric, and wonder if it is "legitimate to kill a Zionist," according to a translation Friday of his full column performed by Merve Tahiroglu, a research associate for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD).
The highly charged column is a sign of mounting anger and increased anti-Semitism across the Muslim world as Israel increases its military operation against Hamas terrorists.
Turkey, once a reliable Western ally, has continued to move away from the United States under Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who himself has come under fire multiple times in recent months for engaging in anti-Semitic and anti-Israel rhetoric.
Israel on Friday was forced to remove its diplomats from Turkey following attacks by protestors on its embassy buildings.
Kose’s column is rife with Jew-baiting rhetoric and seems to passively encourage violence against Turkish Jews.
"As a Muslim I believe that it is not in line with Islam’s justice to think that a person, just because they are a Jew, should ‘die’ or ‘be exterminated,’" Kose wrote. "I mean, if they were, I would not be upset, but I also would not argue that they should be treated this way simply because they are Jewish."
Jewish people, "who cause strife and mischief every place they go," should roundly condemn Israel’s military operation in Gaza, Kose goes on to state.
"There is no way we can accept this ‘genocide movement’ of the ‘Zionist/Jewish terror base’ that is Israel," wrote Kose, who calls on Jews who "still have a conscience" to publicly apologize.
"No reason can justify this," he wrote. "For this reason, those Jews who still have a conscience—if there are any left—should reject Israel’s massacre in Gaza."
Feelings of anti-Semitism and violence are justified at this time, according to Kose.
"The ‘Zionist/Jewish terror base’ that is Israel, continues to turn Gaza into hell with its genocide," he wrote. "So of course one feels like saying, ‘God bless that Hitler!’"
Due to these feelings among some Turks, the country’s chief Rabbi, Rav Isak Haleva, should issue a blanket apology and condemn Israel, Kose says.
"You must quickly, without any delay, with a very clear expression, make a statement in the name of the Jews living in Turkey," Kose wrote to Haleva, outlining what he should say:
In this statement you must say that you ‘don’t find it right,’ that ‘it isn’t humane,’ that you ‘have no sentimental connection to Israel’s operation’ that you ‘don’t condone,’ that you condemn Israel’s genocide in Gaza, the massacre, the operation; the killings of children and the bombing of mosques, hospitals, schools and civil population centers.
Such a statement would help move Muslim Turks to not commit violent acts against Jews in retaliation for Israel’s military campaign, Kose wrote.
"For this reason, a statement that you will make on behalf of the Jewish community in our country, in which you will reject the Israeli operations, will be an important step to prevent an potential enmity between the Muslims and Jews who have lived here in peace for five centuries," he wrote.
Should Jews fail to apologize for Israel and begin flaunting their "Jewish identity," Kose will begin to advocate for "an eye for an eye approach."
"If you come out with your ‘Jewish’ identity and start massacring my Muslim brothers, start siding with this ‘Zionist/Jewish terror base’ that is Israel, which implicates a complete genocide on my religious-brothers in Palestine, from babies to children, and start siding with this crime against humanity, you will be guilty of the same thing," he wrote. "And at that point, I will have earned the right to ask for the ‘an eye for an eye’ approach towards you."
Turkish leader Erdogan has found himself in hot water in recent months for his own anti-Semitic outbursts.
In May, Erdogan ruffled feathers when he reportedly referred to a group of protestors as "Israeli semen."
He also received backlash from the White House last year when he blamed the Israelis for Egypt’s popular revolution that ousted former Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohammed Morsi.
Erdogan’s Turkey has also come under scrutiny for its ties to terror groups and support for Iran.