John Stuart Mill said, “Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends than that good men should look on and do nothing.” So, it was easy for Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan to execute his Islamist agenda of converting Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia into a mosque. But, thankfully, there is some pushback. Not from a major power but a small European country, Greece; but it’s there nonetheless.
As we mentioned earlier, Greece is the only European country to have slammed the conversion. Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’s office said earlier: “Greece condemns in the most intense manner the decision of Turkey to convert Hagia Sophia into a mosque. This is a choice which offends all those who also recognize the monument as a World Heritage Site. And of course it does not only affect relations between Turkey and Greece, but its relations with the European Union” (https://indianarrative.com/world/fear-of-being-called-islamophobe-helped-erdogans-move-5404.html).
Greece’s condemnation has not abated. On Saturday—that is, a day after Muslims prayed at the cathedral-turned-mosque-turned-museum-turned-mosque in 86 years—Greece again castigated Erdogan. This was in response to the Turkish President’s criticism of Greece.
Erdogan had simply called his critics the enemies of Muslims and Turkey. When patriotism blends with religion, it becomes a deadly concoction; Erdogan is using the brew to fool his own people and threaten others.
“We see that the targets of those countries who have made so much noise in recent days are not Hagia Sophia or the eastern Mediterranean,” Erdogan said in a televised speech. “[Their targets] are the presence itself of the Turkish nation and Muslims in this region.”
While he didn’t name Greece, the Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman did: “Greece showed once again its enmity towards Islam and Turkey with the excuse of reacting to Hagia Sophia Mosque being opened to prayers.”
The day Islamic prayers were held at Hagia Sophia, Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis called the conversion of the museum into a mosque as an “affront to civilization of the 21st century.” He was equally right in calling Turkey a “troublemaker.” For Erdogan’s Turkey has been igniting hatred against Christians and Christianity among Muslims.
“In recent years, French churches have also been targeted by a series of provocations and attacks by Islamists. Dalil Boubakeur, rector of the Grand Mosque in Paris and the president of the French Council of Muslim Faith, asked France to turn the country's empty churches into mosques. In Saint-Étienne-du-Rouvray, in northern France, two Islamic State terrorists killed Father Jacques Hamel during a morning Mass. The shock was immediate and immense. Islamists were also planning to strike Notre-Dame de Paris and actually did succeed in conducting an ISIS-inspired terrorist attack on Strasbourg's Christmas Market,” Giulio Meotti, cultural editor for Il Foglio, an Italian publication, recently wrote (https://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/16264/france-cathedrals-fire.)
“Islamist terrorists and other radicalized Muslims have led France’s most deadly attacks against Christians,” Nina Shea of the American think tank Hudson Institute wrote May last year (https://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/frances-other-burning-churches).
Erdogan, the wannabe caliph, wants to revive the medieval glory of Islam, when it ruled major parts of Europe. While the conversion of Hagia Sophia is a symbolic event, it is complemented with concrete measures against Christianity and Western civilization—from supporting radical Islam to urging the Turks to have more children, thus demographically overwhelming Europe.
Turkey is also promoting jihadist bodies like the Muslim Brotherhood. Yasin Aktay, a key advisor to Erdogan, said some time ago, “The Muslim Brotherhood represents Turkey’s soft power.”
In short, Erdogan is continuing with his evil designs in his own country as also outside. Kudos for Greece for taking him on, even as others “look on and do nothing.”.