In case you were wondering, yes, their chairs were the same height. Danny Ayalon, Israel’s deputy foreign minister, met today with a prominent Turkish official, Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu (say that five times fast), to congratulate him for his election to the Council of Europe’s presidency. Last time Ayalon met with a prominent Turkish official, it was the ambassador, and Ayalon deliberately humiliated him by, among other things, placing him in a significantly smaller chair. After this meeting, Ayalon reiterated his apology for that incident, before calling for direct Israeli-Syrian negotiations; Turkey has volunteered to mediate between the two foes.
In other news, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan—whose moderate Islamist party generally is not Israel’s favorite thing in the world—proclaimed today (which in most of the world is Holocaust Remembrance Day) that the Holocaust was “the most grave and unprecedented crime against humanity throughout history.” Which is of course the right sentiment, although we would feel a little better if we didn’t read between the lines and wonder how much Turkey’s position on the Nazi genocide and its totally “unprecedented” nature has to do with Turkey’s position on certain other alleged genocides that it itself may have had a hand in.