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  • Author: Lasha Tchantouridze
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The results of the January 5 2008 presidential elections in Georgia will have a long-lasting effect on this emerging democracy, as well as its foreign policy orientation, and on overall stability in the Caucasus. The winner, Mikheil Saakashvili, widely seen as a pro-American and pro-Western politician very keen on the issues of joining NATO and the EU, has in fact done nothing during his first four years in power to secure his country's political independence from Russia or to weaken Moscow's position in the Caucasus. If Saakashvilis's deeds, rather than his words, are examined more carefully, he appears to be more pro-Russian in his foreign orientation rather than pro-Western. It is not entirely unlikely that President Putin of Russia and his Georgian counterpart Saakashvili are staging the hate game between themselves for the benefit of Western observers and their respective domestic audiences. Saakashvili has just managed to secure his second term in office on the anti-Russian ticket, with all the legal and illegal means at his disposal. This will keep his political opposition, whatever is left of the independent news media, and the majority of Georgians actively opposed to him for years to come. If pressured hard by the West, Saakashvili may be forced to make a turn in his foreign policy orientation, and openly choose Moscow as his political overlord. Such a turn of events would have long reaching consequences for the overall stability and security of the Caucasus, as well as for extra-regional links and energy cooperation.
  • Topic: Security, Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: America, Caucasus, Moscow, Georgia
  • Author: Phar Kim Beng
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: To fulfill Turkey's mission as a "civilizational connector" between Europe and Asia, Turkey must be a full member of the East Asian Summit. The path towards this goal, among others, requires Turkey to be a Dialogue Partner of ASEAN. Once ASEAN sponsors Turkey's membership in East Asian Summit, Turkey would then be strategically positioned to be a key member with some of the world's most monumental economic and political powers in its midst. Indeed, if Turkey is a member of East Asian Summit, ideally by 2010, Turkey would be in a better position to realize its strategic, civilizational, and historical depth.
  • Political Geography: Turkey, East Asia
  • Author: Talip Küçükcan
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Migrant and diaspora communities are increasingly getting engaged in transnational politics and trans-border communication across cultures and nations in the global world. Such communities are empowered by their considerable social and cultural capital that is mobilised to consolidate national interests. The Turkish diaspora in Europe which emerged after a wave of labour migration and their settlement since the late 1950s has a large network, civil capital and political capacity to bridge European Union and Turkey. Turks whose hearts and minds are divided between Europe and Turkey are not only willing to act as a bridge but also equipped with the instruments to do so if acknowledged and mobilised by both sides.
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey
  • Author: Yusuf Devran
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The aim of this research is to analyze how Turkey is portrayed by the British media. This study uses discourse analysis to examine Turkey's portrayal in two British daily newspapers, namely the Guardian and Daily Telegraph, and takes a detailed look at news items published between September 2004 and December 2005. The portrayal of Turkey in the western media helps us comprehend the stereotypes and images at work in the types of cognition European countries have about Turkey. Understanding this portrayal contributes to the development of new projects, strategies and tactics to remove negative images and mental obstacles in the minds of Europeans who remain less than enthusiastic about accepting Turkey's inclusion in the European Union. The deeply rooted conceptions and historical concerns held by European societies regarding Turkey – a country which has been trying to join the EU since 1963 – will be the main emphasis of our examination in this paper.
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey
  • Author: Mehmet Bardakçı
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Since 2004 there has been a dramatic drop in the support expressed by the Turkish public for the EU and the Turkish membership. Many factors were at work for this downward trend of Turkish people's perceptions of the EU including the Cyprus policy, the Armenian genocide claims, the EU's treatment of Turkey as a special case, vocal objections raised by the EU leaders as well as the public to Turkey's EU membership, the economic costs of the accession process, nationalist backlash as a result of the resumption of PKK terrorism, mutual rise in negative perceptions of the Muslim and Western world at large in the post-September 11 process. Therefore, amid growing anti-European sentiments in domestic politics it became increasingly difficult for the ruling AKP to sustain the EU reform agenda.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Armenia
  • Author: Sercan Gidişoğlu
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article offers an analysis of the large inventory of definitions proposed for 'the EU's capacity to absorb new members', by the EU institutions as well as scholars and Brussels-based public affairs companies. It also makes a comparison between 1993, when the term 'absorption capacity' (AC) is used for the first time in an official text, and the period from 2005 on, when this term reappeared frequently in European terminology and came to be defined with more precision. AC mainly refers to the capacity of the EU to absorb new members while functioning efficiently and maintaining the momentum of European integration. It has three main components: economic, political, and institutional absorption capacities. However, despite some consensus on its usage, the term remains ill-defined and misleading. To remedy this problem, the Commission recently replaced the term with the phrase 'integration capacity'. Nevertheless, further efforts should be made to clarify this concept, which is still being used in official texts without enough precision.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Brussels
  • Publication Date: 10-2007
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Salwa Ismail, Political Life in Cairo's New Urban Quarters: Encountering the Everyday State University of Minnesota Press, 2006, 264 p, $22,50, ISBN 0-8166-4912-X by Joanna Odencrantz   M. Hakan Yavuz (ed.), The Emergence of a New Turkey: Democracy and the AK Party University of Utah Press, 2006, 368 pp., $25, ISBN 978-0-87480-863-6 by Barış Kesgin   Guenter Lewy, The Armenian Massacres in Ottoman Turkey: A Disputed Genocide The University of Utah Press, 2005, 370 p., $23, ISBN 978-0-87480-890-2 by Fatih Balcı and Arif Akgül   Jillian Schwedler, Faith in Moderation: Islamist Parties in Jordan and Yemen  Cambridge University Press, 2006, 276 p., $29.99, ISBN 0-521-85113-0 by Hüseyin Alptekin
  • Topic: Islam
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Armenia