Leaders of Russia, Pakistan, Turkey, Iran Visit Central Asia

    Leaders of Russia, Pakistan, Turkey, Iran Visit Central Asia
    Photo: Getty Images News [via Getty Images]

    The Facts

    • Turkish Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Iran's Pres. Ebrahim Raisi, and Pakistani Prime Minister Anwaar ul Haq Kakar traveled to Uzbekistan on Thursday for the regional Economic Cooperation Organisation (ECO) summit, while Russia's Vladimir Putin met with his Kazakh counterpart Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Astana.

    • Erdoğan and Raisi spoke against Israel and the West at the summit in Tashkent, criticizing them over the Israel-Hamas war and highlighting their alleged hypocrisy and crimes in Gaza. The Turkish leader further urged Muslim countries to defend the Palestinian cause.

    The Spin

    Pro-establishment narrative

    The Muslim world should be very cautious before it decides to partner with Russia and China instead of its current Western allies. Russia has a history of killing and torturing so-called suspected Islamic terrorists since at least the Chechen wars of the 1990s, and China's treatment of the Muslim Uyghurs in the Xinjiang province is despicable. Just because these two dictatorships haven't condemned Hamas doesn't mean they're looking to accept Islam in their respective societies.

    Establishment-critical narrative

    The West has no leg to stand on concerning how or with whom the Muslim world conducts its business. The global rules-based order created in 1945 was founded by countries who wanted to prevent human rights abuses — but those countries, headed by the US, are now helping fund Israel's assault on the Palestinian people. A shift in global power structure is on the horizon, and non-Western countries will have a bigger seat at the table.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 39% chance that before 2024, the US government will state that Iran likely helped Hamas plan the Oct. 7 attack on Israel, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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