AHI Responds to Correct the Record on Kissinger, Cyprus
WASHINGTON, DC — The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) released two letters to the editor it submitted to The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times recently.
The first letter was a response to a September 20, 2015 article titled, “Kissinger the Freedom Fighter” by Niall Ferguson. In his letter, AHI President Nick Larigakis rebuts the author’s claim that Kissinger idealistic analysis to foreign policy still applies today. Instead, Rossides points out, it was Kissinger’s realpolitik approach to foreign policy that still lingers painfully today. Larigakis cites as case-in-point the realities of the four decade division of the Republic of Cyprus.
The second letter to the editor was a response to an October 6, 2015 article titled, “In Cyprus, hopes for a thaw in a long-frozen conflict” by David R. Sands. In his letter, AHI President Larigakis expresses dismay a two inaccuracies in the article. First, Sands references the Turkish-occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus as the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” (TRNC). Secondly, Sands refers to Mrs. Emine Colak as the “the foreign minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.”
“Such inaccuracies only embolden the “TRNC’s” separatist policy and hamper negotiations,” Larigakis wrote. He also sets the record straight about Turkey’s two-phase invasion of the Republic of Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriot leadership’s declared establishment of the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” as an illegal and invalid act by the international community.
The letters to the editor can be found in their entirety below.
The American Hellenic Institute is a non-profit Greek American public policy center and think tank that works to strengthen relations between the United States and Greece and Cyprus, and within the Greek American community.
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In response to the following article in the Wall Street Journal, “Kissinger the Freedom Fighter” by Niall Ferguson, printed on September 20, 2015 (https://www.wsj.com/articles/kissinger-the-freedom-fighter-1442570401).
In his essay, "Kissinger the Freedom Fighter," Niall Ferguson writes, "Nearly a half-century later, Henry Kissinger's idealistic analysis still applies." Unfortunately, it is not his idealism that still applies, but rather, Kissinger's realpolitik approach that still lingers painfully today. One only has to look to the realities of the 41-year division of the Republic of Cyprus.
Ferguson claims Kissinger pointed out that what made democracy work in the west "were certain peculiar limitations on governmental power, not least the rule of law." Kissinger did not stay true to his word as it pertained to Cyprus. Ferguson omits the realpolitik of Kissinger which played a complicit role in Turkey's illegal invasion of a sovereign nation, the Republic of Cyprus, with the illegal use of U.S. supplied arms and equipment in violation of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act of 1961, the UN Charter, the NATO Treaty, and customary international law—blatant violation of the rule of law. In a recently declassified 1974 State Department memorandum from Secretary Kissinger, he wrote, "There is no American reason why the Turks should not have one-third of Cyprus." Kissinger abandoned the rule of law and its principles, and by doing so, the United States had a role in causing the present division of Cyprus.
Furthermore, Ferguson's attempt to revise the spot-on critiques of Kalb, Hoffmann, and Isaacson of Kissinger's realpolitik approach to foreign policy is a disservice to those who suffered from it. Just ask the people of Cyprus.
I appreciated coverage of settlement talks to reunify the Republic of Cyprus (“In Cyprus, hopes for a thaw in a long-frozen conflict,” Oct. 6). However, I was dismayed by Sands’ inaccurate reporting on two accounts. First, he references the Turkish-occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus as the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” (TRNC). Secondly, Sands refers to Mrs. Colak as the “the foreign minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.” Such inaccuracies only embolden the “TRNC’s” separatist policy and hamper negotiations.
Turkey’s 1974 invasion of the Republic of Cyprus occurred in two phases. The first, July 20, was in violation of the U.S. Foreign Assistance Act, the UN Charter, the NATO Treaty, and customary international law. On August 14, three weeks after the legitimate government of Cyprus was restored, Turkey launched its second phase, grabbing another 33 percent of the island to expand its occupation to nearly 40 percent of Cyprus’s sovereign territory, which it continues to illegally occupy today.
In 1983, the Turkish Cypriot leadership unilaterally declared the establishment of the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.” This declaration, which the international community viewed as an attempt to dismember Cyprus, was condemned as illegal and invalid by several UN Security Council resolutions that called upon all states to refrain from recognizing the “TRNC” and from assisting or facilitating it in any way. Today, only Turkey recognizes the secessionist entity.
The article concludes with Mrs. Colak stating that if talks break down, “it will not be the fault of the Turkish Cypriots.” She’s correct. It will be the fault of Turkey.
AHI Responds to Correct the Record on Kissinger, Cyprus