U.S. Senator Shaheen: "Turkey Remains a Valuable Ally"

U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Member, Democrat Senator Jeanne Shaheen, spoke to Bloomberg HT journalist Ali Çınar. Senator Shaheen said that as a Senate Foreign Relations Committee member, she would look deeper into Turkey's F-16 request.

"We should sell them the F-16 jets and modernize those jets as well. It's not in our interest not to do that, and there's no quid pro quo with that, and it's just that we should sell. But I need congressional approval to be able to do that, and I think we can get that," President Biden said at a news conference after the NATO leaders' summit in Madrid.

President Biden's comments gave the strongest signal of the administration's support for the proposed sale of new F-16s to Turkey.

Senator Shaheen, who makes critical statements about Turkey, spoke to Ciner Media USA Representative Ali Çınar about the new sales of 40 F-16s and nearly 80 F-16 modernization kits for Turkey. Here is Senator Shaheneen's statement:

“Turkey remains a valuable ally and a critical regional security partner for the United States and NATO. I remain committed to maintaining the already robust bilateral security relationship between our two countries. The F16 upgrade package submitted by the Biden administration - like any foreign arms sale - will ultimately have to go through a comprehensive review by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to ensure that the deal will benefit our joint security interests. As a member of that committee, I will work with the committee and ask questions of the administration to thoroughly review their request.” - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen

Members of the House of Representatives Carolyn Maloney, Gus Bilirakis, and Chris Pappas announced their disappointment with the apparent plan to modernize Turkey's F-16s.

Key Republican Senator Lindsay Graham backed the sale of F-16 fighter jets to Turkey. Upgrading its "aviation capability will benefit Turkey, the U.S., NATO, and regional security," said Lindsey Graham on Wednesday.

While Turkish Parliament Members are preparing to visit Washington D.C. for meetings with their U.S. Counterparts regarding the F-16 request, the U.S. Congress will be closed from August 8 to September 5. In addition, Congressional midterm elections will be held on November 8 for the 435 seats in the House of Representatives and 35 seats in the Senate.

What has come out of the NATO meeting in Madrid?

The Madrid Summit, a crucial summit in NATO history, was held, and the organization carried out significant structural transformations during it.

Negotiations on Finland's and Sweden's participation in NATO, NATO's 'Strategic Concept' that will shed light on the next ten years, the new aid package for Ukraine, strengthening the East Wing of NATO, and NATO–EU relations were at the top of the summit agenda.

In NATO's Strategic Concept document, China was included for the first time, and Russia was included as a direct threat. The document states that the war Russia started in Ukraine severely changed the security environment of NATO and confirms that the main objective of NATO is to ensure collective defense based on a 360-degree approach in the concept prepared within this framework.

The document emphasizes that the three basic duties of the alliance are 'deterrence and defense, crisis prevention and management, and collaborative security,' stating, 'As the backbone of our Article 5 commitment on defending each other, we underline the need for significantly strengthening our deterrence and defense duty.'

The document explains, 'Russia is the most important and direct threat to the safety of the allies. It strives to create impact and direct control areas through force, destruction, and annexation' and notes that Russia uses cyber and hybrid devices as well as traditional methods against NATO allies and partners.

It states, 'NATO does not want conflict, and Russia does not pose any kind of threat. We will continue to give response collaboratively and responsibly against the threats and hostile activities from Russia. However, we seek to maintain open lines of communication with Moscow in order to lessen and manage the risks.'

Referring to the requirement for stability and predictability in the Europe–Atlantic region and between NATO and Russia, the document states, 'Any change in our relations depends on Russia's stopping its aggressive behaviors and completely complying with the international law.'

In the new Strategic Concept document, China was included for the first time, and the following remarks were made: 'China's ambitions and coercive policies challenge our interests, security, and values. While China uses a wide range of political, economic, and military means to increase its global footprint and project power, it remains uncertain about its strategy, intentions, and military background

NATO Gateway Opened to Sweden and Finland

The repercussions of Turkey unblocking and giving the green light to the NATO membership of Sweden and Finland continue to be observed. A triple agreement was signed to resolve the issues that threatened the national security of Turkey. The agreement stated, 'Turkey, Finland, and Sweden express their commitment to the principles and values set forth in the Washington Agreement. One of the essential elements of the alliance is the complete solidarity and collaboration in struggling with all forms and appearances of terrorism that pose a direct threat to international peace and stability in addition to the national security of the member states

With Sweden and Finland keeping their promises to Turkey, the membership of these two countries is expected to be approved by the council of all NATO member countries, including Turkey.

With thanks to Turkey, Sweden, and Finland, the Biden administration has stated that the NATO alliance will expand.

Biden–Erdogan Meeting

In an environment in which ups and downs have been experienced in Turkish–American relations, President Biden and President Erdogan spoke for an hour and ten minutes. In spite of these ups and downs, a message describing the continuation of a constructive relationship and indicating that the meeting had gone well was delivered in the White House's written statement. While President Biden has stated that F-16s should be given to Turkey, President Erdogan has given the message that the bilateral affairs will proceed favorably.

The common and close work of the two NATO countries will be an excellent step for both nations, and it will further strengthen NATO and promote the resolution of the problems in the region.

MicroStrategy CEO Saylor: Of the tokens, 99% will fail, excluding Bitcoin.

Bloomberg HT Journalist Ali Cinar interviewed Michael Saylor, the CEO of Microstrategy. Saylor said that he thinks Bitcoin will survive, unlike most other digital assets.

CEO of Microstrategy Michael Saylor evaluated the decline in cryptocurrencies and the future of digital assets to Bloomberg HT. Having stated that, he thinks Bitcoin will survive. Still, most of the remaining assets will not be able to survive. Saylor also said, "There are almost 20 thousand cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin. The failure rate for tokens, except for Bitcoin, will be 99%."

"Bitcoin is a truly well-engineered decentralized asset, so it will survive," he said. Saylor also emphasized that regulations are required for the cryptocurrency stock exchange, saying, "There is extreme leverage, and with these regulations, they will be further reduced. Besides, it is important for regulators to provide crypto education."

"If you would like to hedge yourself weekly or monthly against inflation monthly or weekly, I have to say that it does not have a safe port strategy in the short term. A thing to do would be to develop a long-lasting strategy. You need to have a strategy that covers four years or more. As for a long-term strategy, different instruments in the basket is a requirement," he added.

Regarding the long-term performance of Bitcoin, Saylor made the following remark: "Considering the periods of two, four or eight years, we can state that Bitcoin has a five to ten times better performance compared to the other alternatives. It showed a better performance than Nasdaq shares, real estate or gold."

Saylor also touched on the regulations issue, commenting, "Bitcoin is actually one of the digital commodities. All of the other 20 thousand cryptocurrency assets are securities. Everything must be explained in these assets as in the other listed companies." They refuse to do this, and problems occur at this point. More transparency will be in question in the next few years because the regulatory authorities have started to work more actively. There is such a transformation, but there are also lots of uncertainties within this transformation. This means if you buy cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin, you take a huge risk.

Asserting that Bitcoin is the best of all digital commodities, Saylor stated that the strategy of Microstrategy is to retain Bitcoin for the long term (longer than ten years). Emphasizing that Microstrategy is already a very profitable company, Saylor also said, "We declared that we bought Bitcoin for an amount of 10 million dollars. We also did this at very different times when we had cash. We are not trying to buy at the bottom and sell at the top. "If you focus on which days will be good or bad, you will fail 98 percent of the time."

Former U.S. Military Attaché Richard Outzen: "Turkey will launch an operation in Syria"

Non-Resident Fellow at Atlantic Council in Turkey, Richard Outzen spoke about recent developments between Turkey and U.S. to Bloomberg HT Journalist Ali Cinar.

WASHINGTON, DC, UNITED STATES, June 28, 2022 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Former Pentagon Official Outzen stated that he had been concerned about the US' remarks regarding protecting stability in the region. He emphasized that there was no stability whatsoever. Outzen said, 'I see that we're no closer to reaching a final solution in Syria. Like the US, we prioritize our own interests.'

He also stated, 'US soldiers continue to operate on the east side of the Euphrates, and they continue to conduct anti-DEASH operations, albeit on a small scale. Of course, the US works with PKK off-shoot YPG in the region, and this is something that Turkey objects to.'

Atlantic Council Non Resident Fellow Outzen warned that 'a Turkish operation on the eastern bank of the Euphrates will be dangerous for the US as well.' He said that the US 'might have told Turkey that a small military operation might be acceptable.' 'The US won't give a major reaction to a small operation targeting Tal Rifat and Menbij,' he said.Outzen emphasized that the US, Turkey, and European Allies must continue to implement sanctions and 'prevent a new refugee wave and increase the pressure on Assad.'

Outzen: "The United States must follow a balanced policy with Turkey and Greece."

Former Pentagon Official Outzen said that there was an idea that the closer the US was to an ally, the more stable they would become. He underlined that Greece has specific hypotheses that cross the line. Outzen said that Greece definitely couldn't be an alternative to Turkey, reminding that Turkey was much bigger than Greece in a geographic and strategic location.

'If the US wants stability, then it must follow a balanced policy between Turkey and Greece, and it must mediate,' said Outzen, adding that in both countries, US ambassadors would share US policies with the public in a positive light.

Former Pentagon Official Outzen also said that Turkey's' concerns about Sweden and Finland's NATO bids were justifiable. Stating that Turkey manufactures about 70 percent of its own needs in the defense industry, Outzen said it is challenging to sell sizeable military ammunition to Turkey in this environment.Lastly, Outzen stated that there is still a problem in the US Congress, but the situation is not entirely hopeless.

Colonel Rich Outzen (Ret.) is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council in Turkey and a geopolitical analyst and consultant currently serving private sector clients as Dragoman LLC. His military service has also included tours in the Office of the Secretary of Defense and on the Joint Staff, and service as military attaché in Afghanistan and Israel.

Ali Cinar is a journalist based in Washington, DC. He represents Ciner Media US Group(Haberturk TV and Bloomberg HT). Ali Cinar was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor and was the youngest Turkish American to receive this award in over 30 years. He is a Ph.D. candidate in Communication at Liberty University,

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Tim Ozgener Returns To Cigar Business

Tim Ozgener is back in the cigar industry with a new brand bearing his family name. The man who once owned and ran CAO alongside his father and sister is about to launch Ozgener Family Cigars Bosphorus. It’s his first blend in around 12 years, and the beginning of what he expects to be several cigars launched under the Ozgener name.  “I still love cigars—and I found I appreciate them more and more,” said Ozgener during a recent visit to the Cigar Aficionado offices in New York City. “Some of the most satisfying portions of my life were in the cigar business. I love the traditions.” He’s been working on the new project, he says, “for close to two years.”

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Ukrainian President Zelensky Calls for Support from G7

 

Ukrainian President Zelensky Calls for Support from G7

Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelensky joined the G7 summit that remotely brings the seven wealthiest economies in the world. He said that his country required more support to protect itself.

Zelensky warned that Russia was stepping up its rocket attacks against Ukraine and said, 'I need modern and effective air defense systems to ensure the safety of the civilian population and protect our cities. Heavier sanctions should be implemented against Russia. It is important to consider effective mechanisms that can remove obstacles preventing Ukraine's grain export and keep the global food supply intact.'

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said that in his remote remarks, Zelensky described his country's current situation and how his government allocated the financial and military support they had received so far. Sullivan also stated that the Ukrainian leader gave the message that in the struggle against Russia, he was determined to bring his country to an advantageous position in the coming months.

Sullivan pointed to the next 24 hours for a possible Biden-Erdoğan meeting.

While answering questions for the press, Sullivan said that there wasn't an exact program for President Joe Biden to meet with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during the NATO Summit that will take place in Madrid. But he said there could be developments in the next 24 hours.

G7 pledges support to Ukraine

On the other hand, G7 leaders issued a joint statement affirming their continued support for Ukraine shortly after Zelensky spoke to them today. The statement said, 'We will continue to provide financial, humanitarian, military, and diplomatic support and stand with Ukraine as long as it takes,' and it emphasized that Ukraine had the support of the G7 when it came to protecting its territorial integrity, defending itself, and determining its future.

Journalist Ali Cinar explained the outcome of the G7 summit that was held in Germany on Bloomberg HT yesterday.

Is the U.S. Headed for a Recession?

With inflation rising to 8.6% and 6 million Americans unemployed, the debate about a possible economic recession has begun in the United States of America. Democrat members of Congress voiced support for the decision of the Fed to hike interest rates by 75 base points, whereas the Republicans said that the Fed should have hiked rates sooner.

Fed chair Jerome Powell said inflation data would be the decisive factor in determining the percentage of further rate hikes in the coming policy meetings. President Biden announced that his first economic priority was to "combat inflation." Secretary of the Treasury Yellen acknowledged the possibility of recession.

The Biden administration reiterated that inflation has been increasing globally due to the pandemic, Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and global supply chain problems. The Fed had to revise its growth, unemployment, and inflation forecasts.

Powell Will Testify Before Congress

Fed Chair Powell will testify in the open session of the House of Representatives and the Senate's twice-a-year monetary policy session on June 22–23.

President Biden will head over to Germany for the G7 summit on June 25, while Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm is expected to meet with the executives of seven oil companies this week.

In an interview given to the Associated Press, Presiden Biden acknowledged that public morale is low because of the pandemic, the current economic situation, and the increasing gas prices that strain the wallets. However, he emphasized that a recession is not inevitable and was optimistic about the country's future. Biden also underlined, "If you want a direct barometer of what people are going to talk about at the kitchen table and the dining room table and whether things are going well, it's the cost of food and the cost of gasoline. At the pump."

Headlines from U.S. Media:

Wall Street Journal: Recession Probability Soars as Inflation Worsens

NY Times; Inflation Expected to Remain High Even as Economy Slows and Layoffs Rise

Washington Post: A recession may be looming. Here's what to do.

Yahoo Finance; Deutsche Bank now expects 'an earlier and somewhat more severe recession'

CNBC: The recession will hit in the first half of 2023 and the Dow is headed lower: CNBC CFO survey

Thousands March for Gun Reform in New York

New York City Mayor Eric Adams, who campaigned on a promise to end gun violence in the city, and State Attorney General Letitia James, who sued the National Rifle Association (NRA), also participated in the rally in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Adams and James led the activists on the march to the Brooklyn Bridge.

The Mayor of NYC stated, "But here's the real problem that many people face right now: the Far Left and the Far Right. By them shooting at each other, the victims are impacting our entire city. The Far Left is saying it's alright for people who are dangerous to stay on the streets with guns, and the Far Right is saying, let's get as many guns in the hands as possible. Those two entities are causing Americans and New Yorkers to be unsafe.".

Attorney General James said, "Nothing will happen in this country unless young people rise instead of the politicians."

Thousands of people took to the streets in Washington D.C. and other cities to demand stricter gun control laws following recent mass shootings, which left many people dead. The protestors called on Congress to act.

Last week, New York Mayor Eric Adams announced the creation of a gun task force ahead of the traditional summer surge in violence to combat the shootings that began across the city at the onset of the pandemic. Adams stated that the task force will be co-chaired by the founder of the Brooklyn-based anti-violence group "Man Up!" Andre T. Mitchell and Deputy Mayor Sheena Wright.

Secretary Blinken: 'Sweden and Finland have more than enough to become NATO members.'

Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a joint press conference Wednesday morning with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.

Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said they exchanged views on NATO's preparations for present and future threats. He stated that there are different topics, from hacking attacks on the internet to China's increasing armament, from security issues that emerged with climate change to the new situation in Europe after Russia's attack on Ukraine.

Blinken reminded that the US had sent 20,000 soldiers to strengthen NATO's eastern flank since the start of Russia's attack on Ukraine and pointed out that, similarly, NATO member countries have maintained their military presence in the region.

Stating that the US continues its military support to Ukraine with the new aid package, the US Secretary of State noted that they aim to enable Ukraine to defend itself more intensely and to sit on the table more strongly against Russia in the next meetings. President Joe Biden made the same point in his column in the New York Times today.Secretary Blinken also said that Ukraine has guaranteed that it will never use the weapons it bought from the United States to target Russian territory other than to defend its territory.

Touching upon Sweden and Finland's application for NATO membership, Secretary Blinken, said, 'These countries applied for NATO membership not because their leaders imposed it, but because their citizens wanted it.'

'The United States strongly supports Finland and Sweden becoming NATO members. These countries have more than enough qualifications to become members of the alliance as soon as possible. NATO will become stronger with the participation of these countries. Like the United States, we expect Finland and Sweden to become members of this strongest alliance in history,' he said.

 

Turkey, Finland, and Sweden delegations will meet in Brussels.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also drew attention to the support given by the US to Ukraine and said that the help of the US continues to make a difference for Ukraine every day at the front. Stoltenberg also expressed his satisfaction with the new military aid package announced by the United States to Ukraine today.

NATO Secretary-General pointed out that NATO has already strengthened its presence in Europe with more than 100,000 troops in the air and at sea and has prevented Moscow from making wrong calculations.

Stoltenberg said that Russian President Vladimir Putin set out to have less NATO presence, but at the point reached today, he is facing more NATO troops and more NATO member countries in Europe.

Describing Finland and Sweden's applications to become NATO members as historic, Stoltenberg said that the membership of these two countries would further strengthen NATO.

Turk of America Journalist Ali Cinar interviewed by Haberturk TV and Bloomberg HT after the joint conference.

US Representative to the UN Continues Her Visit to Turkey

Stating that her first stop in Turkey is to meet with the members of the Syrian opposition-led civil defense organization known as the White Helmets, Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said, 'The White Helmets are helping Syrians in need by putting themselves at risk. The same courage is not needed for the UN Security Council to continue the flow of aid to Syria. It is enough to be determined to do the right thing.'

The UN cross-border mechanism, which ensures that the Cilvegözü border gate, through which international aid enters Syria, remains open, needs to be renewed in July with the UN Security Council decision. However, there is a possibility of facing a veto from Russia and China.

Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield, who emphasized in her previous speeches that the border gate should remain open, also noted on her social media account that she had the opportunity to meet with Syrian refugees within the scope of her Turkey meetings.

'Today, I had the opportunity to meet with Syrian refugees in Turkey, the women and children whose lives have been turned upside down by the horrific conflict that has continued for more than 11 years,' the UN official said on Twitter. 'During these visits, I personally listened to the ongoing humanitarian crisis and the urgent needs on the ground.'

Stating that she also listened to stories of hope during her visit, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield said, 'I listened to the stories of Turkish and Syrian children who went to school together. These students study space in their lessons. That's why I surprised them with NASA-themed gifts.'

Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield also stated that in her meetings, she listened to the stories of Syrian refugees who had found a warm home in Turkey and been able to build a better future for their families and establish businesses that benefit their communities. 

The Permanent Representative of the USA to the UN visited the Antakya Science and Youth Center supported by the International Organization for Migration and talked to refugee children who are learning space and robotic coding there. Thomas-Greenfield is expected to continue her contacts today.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on the UN Security Council to renew the authority of the mechanism that keeps Cilvegözü's door open for aid, saying that this is a 'moral and humanitarian imperative.' The United Nations reports that shipments from here have delivered aid to more than 4 million people. Russia is signaling that it opposes the renewal of the aid operation, arguing that it violates Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity and that more humanitarian aid should be delivered from within Syria. For the UN Security Council resolution to pass, nine votes in favor and no veto from Russia, China, the USA, France, or the UK are needed.

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