by Aggelos Skordas
Turkey’s ultranationalist leader Delvet Bahceli has once again verbally attacked Greece’s National Defense Minister Panos Kammenos, after yet another “hot” incident which took place in the Aegean, when a Turkish helicopter made a very low flight on Monday night over the island of Ro, near Kastellorizo.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s political ally and leader of extreme-right Nationalist Movement Party, Bahceli, said Kammenos should “visit a clinic” and warned about “a repeat of history”.
Only hours after the alleged Turkish helicopter flew around Ro at a very low altitude and with its lights off causing immediate response of troops stationed on the islet, whom fired warning shots, Bahceli told his party members that “he [Kammenos] has forgotten the days when they [Greeks] were chased down and pushed into sea. If that is what they want, a repeat of history, it would be a piece of cake for us. If necessary we can send them back into the sea again and this time they would not escape to Athens”.
Continuing in a similar tone, Bahceli accused Greek officials of grinding their teeth: “The ancestors of the Greeks paid the price of hostility towards the Turks and received a response on the battlefield. Greece is a country that is no larger that Iconium. [Greece’s] irresponsible politicians are gnashing their teeth. If necessary, we may also grind our teeth and pull theirs out.” Moreover, the ultranationalist politician said “the Greek Defense Minister appears affected by mythology”. “He is envious of Zeus, imitates Apollo and aspires to be Poseidon. If he is asleep he needs to wake up, if he is suffering a hysterical crisis he should visit a clinic”, he concluded.
During a recent speech to his supporters in Sakarya, Erdogan recently referred to the Greek population of Asia Minor which in 1922 “escaped from becoming salted fish” by “jumping into the sea”. Erdogan, Bahceli and Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim have repeatedly used strong and insulting language against Greece lately, while tension in the Aegean remains high.