Over Mediterranean Sea Riches
14 January is my Birthday which has also become synonymous with the Clinton’s War since 2011. Now infamous Arab Spring sprung on that day and overthrew the legitimate government in Tunisia. That is how the energy wars of the New World Order began in eastern Mediterranean Sea.
Eleven years later, the second phase of these wars is already underway. Turkey, having consolidated power in the region in the interim, now it is in a position to implement “regime” changes to regulate energy explorations. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan officially announced that 2022 will become the year for energy explorations in the Mavi Vatan.
Since 2011, Turkey has become a Gamechanger in North Africa and the rest of eastern Mediterranean Sea. The National Transitional Council in Libya carved half of the country from the rebel-held eastern section with Turkish help. The regimes in Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco also became client states of the Turkish defense industry.
Israel quickly began to move through back doors to improve relations with dominant Turkey. Egypt began contemplating adjusting to the new reality. Even some in Greece, lately, began pondering why they relied on America and France all along.
In short, what began with the Clinton’s War in the region, a decade later ended with the total Turkish victory and domination. On one hand, Muslim regimes of the region have learned that Turkey has their back. On the other hand, foreign powers, lurking in the region for the spoils of energy riches, understood that buck stops with Turkey.
To put it another way, Globalists failed. Nationalism won. Worse news, in the second phase of the energy wars, now empowered nation-states of the region are ready to strike back. They will act like sovereign states, free of the Western yoke.
Energy Wars of the New World Order
First Phase: Proclamation of Mavi Vatan
Energy wars began when a survey from America announced availability of vast natural gas and oil reserves in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. Libya, Egypt, Gaza, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey encircle this closed sea. There is also the island of Cyprus, divided into two republics. That quickly brings the number of sovereigns claiming stake at the treasurer’s throw to nine.
Outsiders to the region like America, Russia, Western European countries immediately moved in. At one count, there were nearly two hundred foreign warships in this closed sea. They positioned themselves with littoral states of the region to claim their spoils of riches from the finds. In their mind, they had already carved this sea as they saw it fit without taking the locals into consideration.
By 2011, it was already a decade into the twenty-first century. Yet, Western powers were still living in the twentieth century. They did not want to wake up until Turkey, one of the nine local sovereigns, proclaimed Mavi Vatan as an exclusive Turkish domain. Suddenly almost half of the Eastern Mediterranean Sea was now a no-no zone to no one but to the only dominant local power.
The ensuing Libya-Turkey Maritime deal finally closed the rest of the sea to the foreign powers in theory and practice. As a result, Turkey ended the first phase of the energy wars of the New World Order with a total victory and momentum. The remaining eight local countries now were also in a position to claim their fair share, free from intimidation. Turkey, meanwhile, was promptly and deservingly getting the lion’s share.
What Is At Stake
According to the United States Geological Survey, the Levant Basin alone is estimated to contain 3.5 trillion cubic meters (tcm) of gas and 1.7 billion barrels (bb) of oil. The Nile Delta basin may possess 6.3 tcm of gas and 1.8 bb of oil. The area to the south of Crete is also estimated to house significant volumes of gas and oil but here is the caveat. Libya-Turkey Maritime Agreement and questions on the sovereignty of Crete, this particular find is at best in limbo and sure to be put in the back burner for a while.
Meanwhile, there is not yet much publicized estimate of what is inside the Turkish domain, called Mavi Vatan. Considering it is as big as the Levant and the Nile Delta basins combined, the potential is there. To put it into perspective, proven reserves of Azerbaijan, Nigeria, and Iran range from 2.8 tcm to 5.4 tcm and 32 tcm, respectively. Hence, President Erdoğan’s statement that Turkey will primarily focus on energy explorations in 2022 is all the more to the point. The world will finally learn what exactly is at stake in the second phase of the energy wars.
Romans called the Mediterranean Sea “Mare Nostrum.” So did Italians only a century ago. Previously, the Ottomans laid claim to it the same way in the 1500s. Before that, it was the Seljuk Turks in 1085. Ataturk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey also ordered on 1 September 1922: “Armies, your first target is the Mediterranean Sea, Go Ahead!”
The Roman and the Ottoman empires ruled Europe and the vast region because they controlled the Mediterranean Sea. Naval dominance in this sea matters. The British Empire in the 19th century and America in the 20th rose briefly to the sole superpower status only because of their dominant fleets in this sea. In the third millennium nothing has changed.
Now the stakes are different with vast potential energy sources. Plus, there is the rise of the Eastern powers to consider like China, soon to operate there too. Then there are the local stake holders. Hence, energy wars of the New World Order are sure to intensify in the “Mare Nostrum” in the second phase. The bad news: The West is the one to get the short end of the stick.
Energy Wars of the New World Order
Second Phase: Implementation of Mavi Vatan
In August 2020, Turkey discovered 405 billion cubic meters of natural gas in the Black Sea. It is the country’s biggest-ever natural gas find. A year later in June 2021, Turkey announced discovery of an additional 135 billion cubic meters of natural gas in the Black Sea.
Turkish discoveries, so far coming solely from the Black Sea, is a suspect. There are wide ranging rumors that Turkey strategically has been delaying the announcement of finds in the eastern Mediterranean. Simultaneously, Turkey announcing uninterrupted, an inordinate amount of major military platforms coming into fruition, make the intrigue even bigger.
Hence, the official statement from President Erdoğan becomes all the more curious and meaningful at this stage. A quick look back explains what is to come in the second phase of these energy wars. Turkey is the domineering militarily power of the entire region. As a result, next, there is nothing more natural than to focus on the consolidation of its economy through energy explorations.
Having already clearly defined the boundaries of Mavi Vatan, Turkey will proceed with the implementation of regimes in and around Mavi Vatan. From the looks of it, in the first two weeks of January 2022, there are already signs the message about Turkish intention is well communicated to the world. Two unprecedented and sudden international announcements appeared out of nowhere. One came from America, the other from France.
America, France and TCG Ufuk
On 11 January 2022, the Biden Administration expressed misgivings on a subsea pipeline designed to supply Europe with natural gas from the eastern Mediterranean. Greece, Cyprus, and Israel have been planning it for several years. The countries had aimed to reach a final investment decision this year and have the 6 billion euro ($6.82 billion) scheme completed by 2025 to help Europe diversify its energy resources.
Following Biden’s statement on the pipeline, French Total and US ExxonMobil announced that in 2022, they will no longer operate in the eastern Mediterranean. The consortium of French and American giants, a year ago, had already decided to postpone seismic surveys. They were well aware that the offshore blocks south and west of the island of Crete were in contention since the Libya-Turkey Maritime Agreement.
Reportedly, President Emanuel Macron officially notified Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis about the Turkish claims in the region and reasons for the withdrawal. President Biden also did a similar gesture, notifying Israel, Greece, and Cyprus with a letter. The US Administration left no doubt that it has permanently withdrew the support from the pipeline.
TCG UFUK (A-591)
My recent, widely read article, “Turkish Brinkmanship: Electronic Warfare” explains the predicament even better.
Meanwhile, speaking of my Birthday, the Turkish Navy commissioned, on the very 14 January 2022, TCG Ufuk (A-591). It measures 99.5 meters in length and displaces 2,400 tons. It also features a helipad that can accommodate a 10-ton helicopter, and can operate at sea continuously for 45 days. Operating in tough climatic and maritime conditions, the Corvette will be Turkey’s seeing eye and hearing ear on the high seas.
Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, President Erdoğan said that Turkey became one of ten nations worldwide capable of developing and building such a warship. He also said that the vessel, capable of performing SIGINT and ELINT operations, would significantly increase Turkey’s intelligence gathering potential.
The warship is also equipped with antennas identical to those used by the ÇAFRAD radar system. It is a sophisticated indigenous AESA radar built for the TF-2000 air defense destroyers that are under development in Turkey.
The Dire Predicament:
Energy Wars Against Turkey
The TCG Ufuk is not the only “GameChanger” Turkey will put forward in 2022. One of them is a flattop. The other is a new class sophisticated and deadly submarine. They are all indigenously developed and built.
TCG Anadolu flattop landing ship will be the biggest warship in the Turkish Navy. It will also be the first ever “drone carrier” and flagship. Reportedly, it will come with eighty TB-3s, new generation TB-2s, and in due course, with first subsonic and then supersonic MIUS.
In 2022, Turkish drones will also be competing with Turkish “sea drones,” Ulaqs on board. They are, currently mass manufactured and armed, unmanned surface vessels. They are also indigenously developed and produced, much like Zahas that are to premier this year together with TCG Anadolu.
Then there is TCG Piri Reis to talk about. It is the first in a series of six, 65 meters long with 20 knots underwater speed, submarine. It can stay down below without surfacing for about three weeks. The first one is being commissioned in 2022. Each year one more of them will enter service until 2027.
Turkish submarines also come with indigenously developed and built Akya and Orka torpedoes. There is a good chance they will be cheaper and potentially superior than their Western counterparts. Since Turkey develops and mass manufactures military standards first for domestic consumption and then for exports.
A Bit of Advice
America and France
Turkish Navy commissioning TCG Ufuk, TCG Anadolu, TCG Piri Reis and acquiring TB-3s, Akyas, Orkas, and Ulaqs in 2022 are not the only ones to worry the antagonists. Turkey is sure to announce more disconcerting military platforms and products this year.
Hence, it is a safe bet for presidents Biden and Macron to wait and see to avoid embarrassment. That is the least they can do short of cooperating with Turkey. Maybe someone should advise them sooner than later that it is better for America and France to collaborate with Turkey than to compete against.
I did not author “GameChanger,” published in 2020, for nothing. Maybe they should read it instead, and learn something ahead of time. Otherwise, these Globalists will never understand how the world revolves around, nowadays. It hurts hearing them repeatedly making floundering statements and decisions that insult intelligence.