Turkish journalists said the military signaled one expected and one surprise act in this new era after the remarks delivered by Turkey’s newly appointed chief of General Staff, Gen. Ilker Basbug.
Basbug was expected to stress the principle of secularism as the basis of the Turkish Republic, while in a surprise statement he described the “cooperation” with the United States in the fight against terrorism as “excellent”, Murat Yetkin from Radikal daily said on Saturday.
"Our cooperation with the U.S. army is on a perfect level. It is one of our most important duties to preserve this cooperation since Turkey-United States relations have gained further importance," Basbug said on Thursday when officially hold the top post of the Turkish army.
He warned on threats to secularism and stressed the importance of fight against terrorism
No previous chief of general staff has depicted relations between Turkey and United States in this way, Yetkin added.
Semih Idiz, Milliyet daily’s coloumnist also said that Basbug remarks regarding U.S were surprising since they were mentioned in a time when the anti-Americanism is high in Turkish society.
While Fikret Bila, Milliyet daily’s columnist, citing his interview with the leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party, Deniz Baykal, said Basbug had made some important and positive statements, but that these assessments would have no influence.