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  • Author: William Hale
  • Publication Date: 09-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Barack Obama's inauguration as America's new president has been welcomed as opening a 'new era' in Turkey's relations with the United States. May 2009 also saw the appointment of a new foreign minister in Ankara, in the person of Professor Ahmet Davutoğlu. This article examines how these new directions are playing out in the Middle East, one of the world's most turbulent regions which also has crucial economic and strategic importance for Turkey. It focuses on Turkey's relations with four regional states – Iraq, Israel/ Palestine, Syria and Iran. The article closes by assessing whether Turkey has been able to achieve the government's ambition of 'zero problems' with its neighbors, and the degree to which it has been able to develop a new role as conciliator and go-between in addressing the region's bitter conflicts.
  • Topic: Government
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Nathan C. Funk
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The arrival of the Obama administration has created opportunities for positive and enduring change in U.S. relations with the Muslim world. Although early attempts to replace confrontation and ideological inflexibility with a more circumspect approach rooted in conciliatory gestures and "enlightened" political realism are encouraging, more substantial shifts in U.S.-Islamic relations will require commitment to a strategy of active peacemaking that moves beyond the standard repertoire of concepts and practices associated with the Cold War's dominant international relations paradigm. Such a strategy would seek to grasp the potential inherent in President Obama's stated commitment to founding relations upon "mutual interest and mutual respect," breaking the present impasse in U.S.-Islamic relations through principles and prescriptions derived from academic studies of peacemaking as well as from a critical re-evaluation of past U.S. policies.
  • Topic: Cold War, Islam
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Janice J. Terry
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Farnham, UK: Ashgate Publishing Limited, 2009, 159 pp., ISBN 9780754675242. Janice J. Terry, p. 182Insight Turkey, Vol. 11, No.4, 2009, p. 182
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: United States, United Kingdom, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Nurşin Ateşoğlu Güney, Contentious Issues of Security and the Future of Turkey Aldershot, U.K., and Burlington VT, Ashgate, 2007. 197 + xvii pp. Index. ISBN 13: 978-0-7546-4931-1 by William Hale
  • Topic: Islam
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Turkey
  • Author: Barin Kayaoglu
  • Publication Date: 04-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The Cyprus tragedy of the past and the Iraq predicament of our times bear striking similarities. Cyprus of the 1960s and 1970s is not too far from Iraq in 2008. The main thrust of this article is that Cyprus presents a useful case study for contemporary decision-makers in the United States, Turkey, and Iraq. Just like the Cyprus question, which has caused nearly irreparable damage to the relations between Turkey, Greece, and the United States, policies that are not carefully crafted by Washington, Ankara, Erbil, and Baghdad could lead to a very problematic future for the Middle East. In a nutshell, this article offers a cautionary analysis by drawing on the experiences of the Cyprus tragedy for the purpose of avoiding a similar one in Iraq.
  • Topic: Conflict Prevention, War
  • Political Geography: United States, Iraq, Turkey, Middle East
  • Publication Date: 04-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkey as a U.S. Security Partner by Stephen Larrabee / 146 Ömer Taşpnar Turkey and the European Union: Prospects for a Difficult Encounter Edited by Ezra LaGro, Knud Erik Jorgensen / 149 Natia Ejoshvili The Importance of Being European: Turkey, the EU and the Middle East Edited by Nimrod Goren and Amikan Nachmani / 151 Christopher Brewin Between Islam and the State: The Politics of Engagement by Berna Turam / 153 Tuba Kancı The Kemalists: Islamic Revival and the Fate of Secular Turkey by Muammer Kaylan / 156 Michael M. Gunter The Politics of Turkish Democracy: İsmet İnönü and the Formation of the Multi-Party System, 1938-1950 by John M. Vanderlippe / 158 Paul Kubicek The Ottoman Empire, the Balkans and the Greek Lands: Toward a Social and Economic History Edited by Elias Kolovos, Phokion Kotzageorgis, Sophia Laiou and Marinos Sariyyannis / 160 Fatma Sel Turhan
  • Topic: Security, Islam
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Robert Olson
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article examines the challenges of Kurdish nationalism within Turkey and of Kurdish nationalist movements emanating from Iraq during the period between the 22 July 2007 elections and the crises of March 2008. In particular the article discusses the following developments: First, the domestic political scene, particularly the consequences of the 22 July elections and the surprisingly strong wins of AKP deputies in the southeast and east of Turkey versus the relatively poor showing of the DTP; second, the efforts of the Turkish Armed Forces and businessmen's associations to ameliorate economic grievances in the southeast; and third, the increase in PKK terror activities and the TAF's subsequent air and land attacks on northern Iraq. The conclusion addresses the implications of the ongoing U.S. occupation of Iraq for Turkish-Kurdish relations, and discusses the trade-offs of different instruments utilized by Turkey to resolve the Kurdish problem.
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey
  • Author: Ahmet T. Kuru
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The Prosecutor of the High Court of Appeals opened a closure case against the ruling AK Party by presenting it as the center of anti-secular reactionism in Turkey. The indictment largely reflected four myths embraced by the Turkish establishment: 1) Secularism is a way of life and a constitutional principle; 2) Secularism does not allow religion's impact on social life; 3) Islam, unlike Christianity, is incompatible with secularism; therefore, secularism in Turkey should be restrictive; and 4) Turkey cannot be compared with the US, which is not a secular state, but is similar to France, which is secular. The Turkish Constitutional Court has justified restrictive policies on the basis of these myths. The court should no longer be bounded by its misleading past opinions. It can play an historical leading role with its future decisions by providing new, myth-free perspectives on secularism in Turkey.
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey, France
  • Publication Date: 07-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Graham Fuller’s latest book on Turkey provides a critical account of Turkey’s foreign policy in the post September 11 period and an insightful analysis of its structural features and domestic linkages. In fact, the challenges that Turkey faces in the post-Cold War era has been a focus of academic and strategic thinking in a series of recent studies.1The magnitude and the content of these studies reveal Turkey’s increasing role and significance in the post-Cold War era, not only in the regional context but also from the perspective of U.S. foreign policy priorities. All of these studies have concentrated on resolving the puzzle of Turkey’s new foreign policy identity and defining its new role in regional and global terms. Some accentuate the traditional Western orientation inherent in the logic of Turkey’s Kemalist Republic, while others try to establish a link between Turkey’s search for a new strategic role and the country’s post-1980 transformation. The latter point to the ways in which Turkey has initiated a new form of political pluralism, prioritizing identity issues in domestic and foreign pol-icy considerations. In both perspectives the changing nature and form of Turkey-U.S. relations occupy a crucial part of the analysis. The resolution of this puzzle becomes even more urgent in the post-September 11 era when U.S. security concerns require more assertive policies, particularly in the Middle East. Some go so far as to argue that there is an urgent need to redefine Turkey-U.S. relations if Turkey is to be relevant in the 21st century.2However, there is also a growing acknowledgement that Turkey has been slipping from the U.S. orbit and following a relatively independent foreign policy. F. S. Larrabee, for example, states that “in the future, Turkey is likely to be an increasingly less-predictable and more difficult ally.... [and] the United States will need to get used to dealing with a more in-dependent-minded and assertive Turkey–one whose interests do not always coincide with U.S. interests, especially in the Middle East.”
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Mahmood Monshipouri, Banafsheh Keynoush
  • Publication Date: 09-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Conflicting dynamics and power calculations within the Bush administration have given rise to contradictory signals coming from Washington regarding how best to deal with the Iranian puzzle. The situation indicates a lack of strategic coherence that could tip the balance toward a military showdown with Iran. If anything, the 2001 and 2003 wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which have essentially altered the balance of power to Iran's advantage, represent a total disregard for the ensuing negative consequences for the region. Under such circumstances, the absence of serious, direct talks with Iran have the potential to lead to greater momentum for war. In this paper, we set out to examine the internal and regional consequences of a U.S. attack on Iran, while asserting that the benefits of cooperation outweigh the costs of military confrontation. Negotiating with Iran is the only reasonable solution to the crisis confronting these two powers, and U.S.-Iran rapprochement can have a stabilizing impact on the entire region. Conversely, the implications of confrontation will be horrendously costly and profound.
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, United States, Iran