This week was another of those difficult weeks to schedule blogs, because so many people shared so many articles on all sorts of topics that it was rather difficult to decide what to blog about. Indeed, my usual practice is to delete files from week to week of articles I have not used, but this week is different, as I have retained many important stories for possible blogs in the future.
One of the themes that emerged in this week's pile of emails and articles, however, was space, and more literal high strangeness. Accordingly, today we begin a two days' worth of blogs relating to space stories that also emerged in the same context (more or less) as the strange Aldrin-Antarctica story.
The story begins with Sultan Erdogan's newest policy reversal in a year that has seen many such reversals from the Sultan. Initially of course, the animus of Ankara was directed against Assad's government in Damascus, and Erdogan was aiding the US-ISIS effort to topple that government, and along the way, collect a lot of swag from ISIS's oil smuggling. Then, of course, we had the Russian intervention, the sudden reversal of the radicals' military fortunes thanks to a few well-laced Russian bombs and ordnance, then the downing of the Russian fighter by Turkey. Tensions rose, Russia placed an embargo on against Turkey and demanded an apology and compensation.
Equally as suddenly, we saw the abortive coup attempt against Mr. Erdogan, his bizarre flight from Istanbul accompanied by two Turkish coup fighters that did not shoot him down, Frau Merkel's refusal to grant him asylum, his flight back to Istanbul and his twitters and tweets calling out "the people," and the subsequent collapse of the coup, which Mr. Erdogan promptly blamed on U.S.-protected Gullen. The Turks blocked power to Insirlik airbase while the USA quickly shuttled its nuclear weapons there to eastern Europe and out of Turkey's reach. This was followed equally quickly by a complete reversal of policy of Erdogan's part, with visits to Russia, letters of apology to that country for shooting down its fighter, full compensation for the family, and re-establishment of relations with Israel, accompanied by some stiff anti-NATO and anti-EU rhetoric out of Ankara.
Then, Mr. Erdogan did another apparent about-face, and invaded Syria once again. This has been followed by some (no doubt sharp and pointed) phone calls from Mr. Putin, which forced Mr. Erdogan to reverse course yet again in just a matter of days, backing off from his statements that Turkey was there to overthrow the Assad regime once and for all. In reality, I suspect that Mr. Erdogan's target here was not the Assad regime, but the Kurds, a constant source of irritation to Ankara.
... while all this was going on, Turkey played host to one of the largest UFO flaps in recent memory, according to this story shared by many readers here:
The story made some of the major American talk shows as well.
This is one of those stories that almost compels some high octane speculation, for as UFO flaps go, its timing is unusual, both as to timing during a major geopolitical crisis and confrontation, but also as to its place, namely, in the country originated the current round of the crisis, Turkey. This invites the idea that someone was sending messages, but who? Mr. Putin, of course, most likely had some hard and less-than-encouraging words for Mr. Erdogan during their phone conversations, and a day later, by most reckoning, Mr. Erdogan had altered his message that the Turkish invasion was simply meant to be against terrorism rather than Mr. Assad's government. This invites the idea that perhaps the UFO "flap" may have been meant as a "backup" to whatever message Mr. Putin delivered, a kind of revelation of Russian "black projects" as it were.
This is not so far-fetched as it may seem, for in my books I have detailed the journey through Russia of a US Senator by train in the 1950s, during which trip he witnessed a "disk like object" ascending from the surface. The Senator's Russian escorts, undoubtedly KGB, then appeared, politely excused themselves, and pulled the blinds on the train window down. The senator then reported that he felt like he was meant to see what he saw. After all, the Russians had their fair share of captured Nazis too, and some of them, according to some stories, were occupied in the various Nazi "saucer" projects utilizing vectored jets and so on. Possible? Well, maybe.
But if not Russia, then who? The USA would have no reason to send dissuading message to the Sultan. This leaves a "third party" of some sort, whatever its origins, intent on sending messages to Mr. Erdogan. This is, indeed, another case of "you tell me," but (and here comes the really high octane speculation), I cannot but help wondering if all this recent business is somehow related to Patriarch Kiril's visit to Antarctica and with "whatever is going on down there." If so, then we may indeed be looking at even stranger "alliances" then we've seen thus far, some, perhaps, involving alliances with hitherto unknown players.
Really high octane speculation? To be sure. But in this case it's a case of you tell me.
See you on the flip side...