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  • Author: Azuolas Bagdonas
  • Publication Date: 08-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Why does Lithuania support Turkey's accession to the European Union? The article analyzes some of the key domestic factors and the strategic thinking behind Lithuania'a continuous support. Domestically, the political culture of the foreign policy elite and the permissiveness of public opinion allow treating Turkey's accession as a foreign policy issue, subject to cost-benefit calculations. Short-term calculations involve mutually advantageous deals between Turkey and Lithuania. Long-term assessments focus on how Turkey's membership would affect global, regional, and intra- European dynamics of power relations. The article suggests that, in the context of lasting foreign policy objectives and concerns, Turkey is attractive to Lithuania primarily due to its geopolitical roles: its traditional transatlantic alignment, its function as a transit hub for energy supplies to Europe, and its potential to become a great power, engaging in regional competition with Russia.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Turkey
  • Author: Deniz Bingöl Mcdonald
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article examines whether the presence of imperial legacies in Central and South-eastern Europe affects their foreign policy stances and public opinion towards Turkish accession to the EU. It first discusses the boundaries of the ideational factors affecting the perception of Turkey, namely the historical legacy of the Ottoman Empire as a European power in Eastern Europe. Secondly, it looks at the ideational factors in how Turkish foreign policy, more specifically Turkey's EU membership, is perceived by Eastern and South-eastern European political elite and public. The author finds that in places where the Ottoman Empire is perceived in more historically distant terms, the more positive or neutral views are of Turkish membership. It concludes with a juxtaposition of Eastern European stances with Turkey's new foreign policy strategies. It recommends that Turkish foreign policy should not neglect advocacy in the western part of the old Ottoman sphere of influence where new EU members lie. These may indeed by transformed into new allies to support Turkey's bid against the opponents among older EU members.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey
  • Author: Halil Bay
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: In recent years, not only have the changes in Turkish foreign policy been discussed but also the key factors and actors behind the change. This book deals with both the professional and academic life of the foreign minister of Turkey, Ahmet Davutoğlu, and provides information on him and on developments in Turkish foreign policy. The author, Gürkan Zengin, is a journalist with an interest in foreign relations. His book includes a number of important stories of Davutoğlu from when he was a university professor and advisor up to today as a diplomat and minister. It seems that the author reached his conclusions and got information for the book from colleagues of Davutoğlu, his writings, and from other media. At first sight, this book is very beneficial for those who are interested in Davutoğlu and Turkish foreign policy in general.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Development
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Özden Zeynep Oktav
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Socrates' pupil Chaerephon once asked an oracle “who is the wisest of all men?” The oracle responded that Socrates is the wisest of all because of his self-awareness. According to philosophers from Socrates to Montaigne, Spinoza, Kant, true wisdom and full knowledge may be a utopian fantasy. In a world of uncertainty where mistakes are unavoidable facts of daily life for citizens and politicians alike, how politicians will be able to avoid foreign policy mistakes is the main concern of this book. There are some other questions of crucial importance which the book deals with: What are foreign policy mistakes and how and why do they occur? The answers to those questions are available in this book and it concentrates on the concept of power. Regarding the concept of power, the main question is “kto-kovo?” (Lenin's famous question, “who controls whom?”) The answers to the question “what are foreign policy mistakes?” and conceptualizing foreign policy mistakes are quite blurry and complicated. There may be lots of different kinds of mistakes, such as violating moral rules, lack of cognitive judgment, and policies costing too much and having unanticipated and undesirable results. The mistakes can be classified as omission (too little/too late) and commission (too much/too soon). For example, mistakes of omission are evident in the British policies towards Germany which failed to deter Germany's occupation of Sudetenland in 1938 and to reassure the Russians that they would negotiate an alliance against Germany. This failure of the British decision makers led to a non-aggression pact between Stalin and Hitler in 1939. The Katyn Forest massacre exemplifies best how Soviet Russia misperceived the gains in cooperating with Germany in the removal of Poland from the map of Europe because according to the authors, the Soviet decision to execute Polish POWs and bury them in the Katyn Forest is a foreign policy decision that falls into three domain; morality, intelligence and policy. It was a violation of international law, based on a diagnostic judgement blinded by ignorance of the future and by communist ideology, which led to a prescription for a policy action that alienated future allies.This, at the same time illustrates the mistake of commission (too much/too soon) and moral failure. Foreign policy choices are not only concerned with rational choices, but, as Axelrod and Jarwis clearly defined it, they also stem from some sources of mistakes such as subjective cognitive maps, heuristics, attribution errors, desires to maintain cognitive consistency and avoid cognitive dissonance, selective attention, and other emotional or cold cognitive biases. Khong explains why human beings are “creatures with limited cognitive capacities” by emphasizing that leaders, like every human, tend to turn to historical analogies for guidance when confronted with novel foreign policy challenges. However the issue is that the result is often a foreign policy mistake since this only helps the leaders “access analogies on the basis of surface similarities”.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Britain, Russia, United States, Europe, Poland, Soviet Union, Germany
  • Author: Ömer Taşpınar
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkey is becoming more independent and self-confident. Yet, the current analysis on Turkey in most American circles tirelessly refers to the tension between secularism and Islam or Eastern versus Western proclivities. Such focus often comes at the expense of the most powerful force driving Turkish foreign policy: nationalism and self-interest. Turkish-American relations are witnessing a paradigm shift that can be best defined as the rise of Turkish Gaullism. A Gaullist Turkey may in the long run decide to no longer pursue an elusive EU membership. It may even question its military alliance with the United States. Burdened by a sense that it never gets the respect it deserves, Turkey may increasingly act on its own in search of full independence, full sovereignty, strategic leverage and, most importantly, Turkish glory and grandeur.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Islam, Nationalism, Sovereignty
  • Political Geography: America, Turkey
  • Author: ZİYA ÖNİŞ
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The “axis-shift” discussions on Turkish foreign policy activism over the last couple of years have attracted remarkable international attention. Some pundits have attempted to place Turkey's increasing relations with its neighbors within the context of an ideological and identical reshuffling of Turkish foreign policy principles. While finding the “shift of axis” argument a rather crude characterization, the paper nevertheless argues that there are subtle shifts in Turkish foreign policy orientation. In this context, the paper aims to identify both the elements of continuity and rupture in the style and behavior of Turkish foreign policy. In fact, there are solid political economy fundamentals and legitimate reasons for Turkey to pursue a multi- dimensional and more assertive foreign policy in the emerging multi-polar world system. However, the present paper underlines that Turkey's multi-dimensional foreign policy activism with no firm axis may have potentially counterproductive consequences regarding Turkey's long- term national interests as well as its ability to play a stabilizing role as a pro-active and benign regional power.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Mustafa Kutlay
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkish foreign policy activism during the last decade has attracted widespread international attention. As a result, scholarly literature on the issue has expanded noticeably. If one makes a general categorization, the literature on the new Turkish foreign policy has mainly concentrated on “security-based” and “identitybased” explanations. The role of the changing economic dynamics in Turkey and the transformation of Turkish financial and industrial capital, however, are not adequately addressed in the existing literature. This study aims to contribute to the recent debates from a political economy perspective with reference to the functionalist and interdependence approaches. It is argued in this paper that the bifurcation within the financial capital in Turkey in the post-2001 period and the internationalization of the 'Anatolian tigers' have turned out to be the 'practical hand' of Turkish foreign policy. In addition, this study argues that there are certain limits and constraints of employing political economy factors as a driving force in the Turkish foreign policy activism.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Kadri Kaan Renda
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: In this paper, I argue that a fuller understanding of the recent activism in Turkish foreign policy, and in particular the changing nature of relations with its neighbors, requires us to engage in the study of the increasing economic interdependence and the analysis of broadly redefined national interests. Therefore, this paper aims to explain Turkey's relations with its neighbors through the neo-liberal theory model put forth by Robert O. Keohane and Joseph S. Nye, which underlines the importance of interdependence and cooperation among states. I argue that recent developments in Turkish foreign policy, particularly Turkey's relations with its neighbors, resemble the characteristic features of complex interdependence. The new activism in Turkish foreign policy facilitates international cooperation among regional actors and creates a “complex interdependence”.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Altay Atli
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Research on state-business relations has traditionally focused on business associations' lobbying activities. However, as these organizations started to assume a more active role in their country's economic life, scholars began to look at another distinct role of business associations: their formal participation in policy making. This article examines to what extent Turkish business associations are taking part in the foreign economic policy-making process, which, in turn, leads to two sub-questions: (1) Through what kind of mechanisms is a pattern of interaction established between the state and the business associations? (2) Does the state transfer a part of its administrative functions to the private sector? This article examines the institutional setting established during the liberalization wave of the 1980s and has gradually evolved up to the present, through which the state has maintained its role as the policy maker yet has allowed the private sector to play a role in the process because it is deemed to be capable of administering specific functions more efficiently than the state.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Mehmet Babacan
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Our analysis will discuss Turkey's changing direction, if any, in terms of its trade orientation. This paper argues that Turkey's trade sector has maintained its long-standing direction towards the major European Union (EU) member countries with only minor setbacks, while new dimensions in bilateral trade have emerged not only due to Turkey's changing foreign policy considerations but also global economic transformations. Moreover, this paper argues that Turkey's trade partners are subject to these changes, as the epicentre of the global economy shifts, i.e. to the East. In the first section, a brief introduction with regards to Turkey's foreign trade under the AK Party's administration -since 2002 will be provided. The second section will discuss the scope of regional and worldwide changes in trade patterns and analyze the recent shift in Turkey's trade orientation in the context of Asia's economic and political rise in early 21st century. The Third section will focus on the role of political dynamics in Turkey's trade sector and structural issues.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey