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  • Author: Ali Balci
  • Publication Date: 08-2016
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Turkish Journal for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Abstract: The issue of rapprochement with Kurdish parties in the Northern Iraq turned a discursive battlefield between Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and the ruling Justice Development Party (AKP) after the 2005 General Elections in Iraq from which Kurdish groups emerged as a strong political actor in Iraqi politics. When the AKP government declared its policy of rapprochement with the Kurdish regional government at the beginning of 2007, the then Chief of General Staff Yaşar Büyükanıt publicly criticized and rejected this new policy. Büyükanıt declined to talk with Kurdish leaders on the grounds that they were supporting for the PKK. This exchange of statements was the part of a political snowball rolling to which other areas of the struggle were included. The rift between the AKP government and the TAF over how to deal with Iraqi Kurds started just as Turkey gears up for key presidential elections. This paper will attempt to analyze the battle over the Northern Iraq between the TAF and the AKP in order to answer the following questions: How the TAF and the AKP came face to face on the issue of the Northern Iraq? Under what conditions the Northern Iraq turned a discursive battlefield between the TAF and the AKP? What was the function of the Northern Iraq in the domestic power struggle between the TAF and the AKP?
  • Author: Mehmet O. Alkan
  • Publication Date: 08-2016
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Turkish Journal for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Abstract: The “Promulgation of Freedom” on 23 July 1908 paved the way to the Second Constitutional Period. A clear ideological change occurred in this 10 years period that lasted in 1918. This shift in ideology was a transition from “Islamic-Turkish Synthesis” of Abdülhamid II’s reign to the “Turkish-Islamic Synthesis.” The Committee of Union and Progress could have put into practice “Turkish nationalism” or “militant secularism” as the Republican People’s Party did after 1924 when they took the power after the coup of 23 January 1913. However the Balkan Wars and the World War I enforced them to postpone their will. On the contrary they made use of Islam as a unifying and mobilizing source of power and tried to build Turkish identity between the lines in the education system. That is why, as a result of these circumstances, “Militarist nationalism” and “Militarist Turkish-Islamic Synthesis” came into agenda in the Second Constitutional Period.
  • Author: Othman Ali
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Turkish Journal for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Abstract: In post-ISIL Iraq the country has little chance to remain as unified democratic state. The foreign intervention and Iranian expansionist policies in the form of building buffer of satellite states on its borders in particular, will leave a permanent impact on the nature of the emerging regime in Iraq. Besides, the issue of growing sectarianism, and ethnic polarization and will create low intensity conflicts which will be a salient feature of the future political system. It is our contention that unless Iran is restrained in its regional hegemonic policies, Iraq will be disintegrated into two or three entities along sectarian and ethnic lines, and this will have regional consequences with far-reaching consequences.
  • Author: Agah Hazir
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Turkish Journal for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Abstract: This article reviews existing comparative literature on Iran and Turkey in terms of their approaches, themes and findings. It extracts and critically analyses two dominant trends in this literature; Comparative Analyses of Cultures and Comparative Analyses of Modernizations. This paper argues that, these two common lines of approaching have serious limitations since they carry the traces of orientalist and ethnocentric assumptions. New literature on this topic however, offers new avenues of research, enabling the debate to avoid the above mentioned pitfalls. As a conclusion, this critical review points to certain dynamics to consider (over-politicization of the Iran-Turkey comparisons and the impact of international developments) in order to facilitate stronger comparative frameworks.
  • Author: Norman Finkelstein
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Turkish Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
  • Institution: Turkish Journal for Middle Eastern Studies
  • Abstract: On 31 May 2010, Israeli commandos killed nine Turkish citizens aboard the Mavi Marmara, the flagship vessel of a humanitarian flotilla headed for besieged Gaza. The Israeli attack evoked international outrage, which caused Israel to appoint an official commission of inquiry chaired by former Israeli Supreme Court Judge Jacob Turkel. In January 2011, the Turkel Commission released a 300 page report that allegedly established what happened in the course of the Israeli assault. In fact, and unsurprisingly, the report was a grotesque whitewash of Israeli actions. Nonetheless this mendacious report effectively shielded Israel from further international scrutiny. A panel of inquiry created by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to resolve differences between Turkey and Israel over the Mavi Marmara killings “fully associated itself” - in the bitter words of the Turkish representative on the panel - with the the Turkel report’s findings. To date, no independent researcher has exposed in detail the dishonesty and fraud of the Turkel report. The purpose of my article is to fill this gap.