Russia, in light of the awareness of media as the strongest tool to affect the world to legitimize oneself while causing wars, reveals supposed evidence about the oil trade between Turkey and DAESH after Turkey’s downing its jet,

In today’s world, foreign policy is not only about what countries do or do not do, but also about the “marketing” of what they are doing or seem to be doing. Diplomacy has become a tool that helps shape peoples’ perceptions about world affairs.

That is why officials present facts in so many different ways that it becomes impossible for ordinary people to understand what has actually happened. Propaganda has always existed, but it has been conducted in different manners. In the past, when a head of state was making an official statement, people assumed that this was the correct version of what happened. Nowadays, however, we listen to official declarations always with some suspicion. Societies have already learned that official declarations are part of the propaganda war.

As an example, let’s have a look at the official declarations of Russia, which seems determined to keep the crisis with Turkey dragging on. Moscow has built its propaganda on two particular issues. First, Turkey downed the Russian jet, they claim, without a justified reason. According to them, the Su-24 did not violate Turkish airspace and had never been warned.

If you believe this version, you will have to admit that Turkey had suddenly decided to carry out an act of war against Russia. We do not know if there are people in Russia hoping to make war with Turkey, but why on earth would someone in Turkey want to start a war with Russia? Ankara has always valued its friendly relations with Russia, we have excellent commercial relations and, moreover, Turkish authorities know that Russia is a global nuclear power, so I do not think anybody in Ankara would like to have a war with this mighty neighbor.

When asked about this, Russians say that Turkey’s aim was to give additional justification for NATO to reinforce its presence in the Middle East. It is true that if Turkey were to ask for NATO’s help, the military organization would have to help. Nevertheless, NATO member states are already operating in the region, and they did not wait for Turkey’s invitation, as the threat posed by DAESH had been enough for all of them to send troops to the Middle East. So if someone had indeed pulled NATO into the region it was not Turkey, but DAESH.

Maybe the Russian public, or those in Iran and the Assad regime believe this propaganda, but the rest of the international community does not seem to be paying any attention to it. Russian President Vladimir Putin is personally involved in this propaganda as he even had his picture taken while examining the Russian jet’s black box.

The second part of the Russian propaganda is about DAESH oil smuggling. First, we do not know if DAESH has enough oil under its control to affect world market prices. If DAESH has enough oil and sells it, and if Russia knows who the buyers are, it is hard to understand why Russia is better informed than anyone else about this and why it has not done anything about it before the downing of its jet.

Russia insists so much on the matter that one could believe Turkey’s economy depends on DAESH oil. If Turkey were that compromised, would not its NATO allies be angry with it? Why are Turkey’s explanations accepted while Russia keeps telling the world Turkey is acting like an ally to DAESH? We know that oil smuggling or other illicit trade exists in every war zone, but as we saw in Libya, those who benefit from it are often those who send their troops there.

Russia’s propaganda is mainly about pushing Turkey into a difficult position among its Western allies and about harming relations between Iran and Turkey. Fortunately, Turkey is aware of that as well.

By Beril Dedeoğlu, Daily Sabah