• Turkey 'got what it wanted from Finland and Sweden' in talks, its government says

    ... and it approved the bids by Finland and Sweden to join NATO. Many view this as picking sides against Russia. Erdogan also said yesterday 'We will work with Biden for the purchase of the F-16s.'

  • Ukraine using Turkish (NATO ally) drones against vehicles in Russian convoy

  • Bulgarians and Greeks are buying a lot of goods in Turkey for the low prices.

  • Turkey Technofest

    Main things: killer drones, fighter jets, EVs, guns, helicopters, biotech, AI.

    At the podium, the chief tech officer said they were holding the festival 'in order not to be condemned to a world constructed by brutal capitalist technology monopolies, we must fill our sails with our own wind of transformation, and the direction of our civilizational values." Turkey's shifting away from importing tech.

    The initiative should generate a lot of cash for Turkey. Last year, Turkey's defence tech got $2.3b. People suggested if Turkey continues along its current tech development path, it might become home to the largest aerospace festival, and maybe even a world leader in the sector.
  • Turkish underworld figure, hiding out in Dubai, is blogging regularly about the dirt on Turkish politicians

    His name is Sedak Peker. Turks tune in every week for his updates, and the majority think there is at least some truth in them. Although many of the things he says are already known, that he is saying them and the evidence (although it seems there's not much in the way of evidence) makes people listen.

    His most recent video said he was now on a 'red list,' meaning there was a high chance he'd be killed, but said he would still do what he had said, which is talk about Erdogan. Erdogan has called it a 'conspiracy.'

    'People listen to him because the media here in Turkey has been silenced. They can't report many facts, so people prefer to believe what a Mafia leader says,' according to a DW Turkish Service worker.

  • Turkey has approved development of a new canal beside the Bosporus

    The Bosporus is Turkey's, but due to the 1936 Montreux Convention it can't allow non-Black Sea State navy ships to pass through, and it can't charge for the passage of civilian vessels during peacetime. The new Istanbul Canal would not have such restrictions.

    It is expected to be around 45km long, 21m deep, and 360-275m wide (top and bottom) and cost $15b. It will sit around 30km west of the Bosporus Straight, and will be spanned by 6 bridges, all high enough to clear the largest ships (which will cost another $1.4b).

    Currently, ships have to wait around 14 hours to enter the Black Sea due to congestion of the Bosporus. Estimates have it that revenue from the canal could amount to $8b per year eventually, if vessels decide to pay, which it is uncertain they will. Turkey will also be able to send dangerous cargo on a route further away from the city center.

    Istanbul citizens polled in 2020 opposed the project (80% opposed) due to environmental and other effects they will be faced with. It's also opposed by Russia which sees the potential ability of US and NATO warships to enter the Black Sea as a national security threat. 104 former Turkish naval officers also publicly opposed the project (the next day 10 were arrested).

  • First AI drone attacks (without human oversight)

    Reports have it that last year a Turkish quad-copter which was a true set-and-forget weapon, identified targets and opened fire in Libya. The targets were renegades loyal to Khalifa Haftar, reportedly.

    Analysts note that Turkey and other countries perceive themselves to have a competitive advantage by using these tools.