Friday, April 1
Melee at Brookings as Erdogan ignores differences between Washington and Ankara
Such a good boy, Barackie
The staid Washington-based Brookings Institution, the most influential think tank in the world, hasn't seen so much excitement since never before as Erdogan's security detail treated American protestors and journalists the way they do in Turkey.
See the following report for photos and video of the scuffles inside Brookings and just outside the building, as Brookings guards, DC police and even Brookings staff jumped in to protect journalists from Erdogan's thugs.
Photos: Turkish President's Visit To Brookings Turns Violent
BY RACHEL SADON
March 31, 2016 - 2:10 PM EDT
Security for Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan clashed with protesters, journalists, Brookings staff, and D.C. Police this afternoon, as the violence outside the prominent think tank overshadowed his scheduled speech.Erdogan is in town for the Nuclear Security Summit, which is causing more traffic chaos than anything else thus far, and he met with Vice President Joe Biden earlier today. He was also due to give a 12:30 p.m. speech at Brookings on "global challenges and Turkey's goals for the year 2023."
Supporters showed up with signs and flags to welcome him, while protesters came out with posters calling the Turkish president a war criminal, among other criticisms.
Although Erdogan's address was being webcast, his security detail tried to bar multiple reporters from the event.
A Wilson Center scholar and Turkish journalist tweeted that Erdogan's guards called her a "PKK whore." Others filmed Brookings staff working to protect journalists as the Turkish personnel tried to kick them out of the building.
Foreign Policy reports that at least one reporter was removed from the site, a second was kicked by a guard, and a third thrown to the sidewalk outside the Brookings Institution. Turkish officials also demanded that police remove the protesters, which they declined to do.
"You're part of the problem, you guys need to control yourselves and let these people protest," a D.C. police officer told one of the Turkish guards, FP's Paul Mcleary reports.
No arrests have been made, according to a D.C. Police spokeswoman.The National Press Club had even stronger words than the police. From the CBS report on the melee:
In a statement Thursday, NPC President Thomas Burr said the Turkish leader's team "have no right to lay their hands on reporters or protesters or anyone else for that matter, when the people they were apparently roughing up seemed to be merely doing their jobs or exercising the rights they have in this country."CBS goes on to mention:
In Turkey, Erdogan's government has been cracking down on the press, and earlier this month seized Zaman, the newspaper with the highest circulation in Turkey.CBS avoids mentioning that Erdogan treated his American hosts like Turks because he has complete contempt for America's President, which frankly President Obama brought on himself.