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  • Author: Mehmet Ugur Ekinci
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article provides a general overview of Turkey's relations with the Western Balkans during the AK Party government. Although the Western Balkans has always been of primary interest for Turkey, the relations with this region had progressed only slowly and partially until the mid-2000s. From that time onwards, the convergence of a number of factors, including Turkey's economic progress, the AK Party's active foreign policy vision, the growth of civil society and the business sector, and favorable international political and economic conditions created new opportunities for Turkey in the Western Balkans. Consequently, the relations between Turkey and the Western Balkans has developed rapidly, especially in the economic and social spheres. Meanwhile, Turkey still has to deal with certain challenges and shortcomings for further deepening of these relations and their translation into political influence.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War, Economics
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Balkans
  • Author: Joerg Baudner
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article aims to explain the evolution of Turkish foreign policy through the search for a foreign policy role concept. It will argue that the AK Party government has already adopted two different foreign policy role concepts. Thus, the changes in Turkish foreign policy can best be characterized as the adoption of a foreign policy role with many traits of civilian power (2002-2005), subsequent limited change (2005-2010) and the adoption of a regional power role (from 2010 on).
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War, Government
  • Political Geography: America, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Zuhal Mert Uzuner
  • Publication Date: 10-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Change is a central concept in Turkish and global politics. It forms the basis of liberal ideology, alongside freedom, democracy, and equality. In this spirit of change, radical liberal thinkers question the state of contemporary international relations with a focus on justice and fairness. Ahmet Davutoğlu appreciates the importance of these liberal considerations, and he claims the global order is in a period of transformation, in which Turkey and the rest of the world will come into new political roles. In order to facilitate the formation of a fair, cooperative world order, Davutoğlu promotes a global consensus based on cosmopolitanism and multilateralism. These ideas for international reform are consistent with radical liberalism. However, he also considers the formation of a new global order according to his conservative and Islamic ideas-a position inconsistent with liberalism. This contradiction demands a better understanding of Davutoğlu's stance in domestic politics and international relations, and a consideration of implications for Turkey's global identity.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War, Government, Politics
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Dimitar Bechev
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkey's activism in former Yugoslavia is a continuation of the country's post-Cold War strategy in the broader context of South East Europe. It is driven largely by structural shifts related to the spread of democracy, Europeanization and globalization, rather than by ideology or Ottoman nostalgia. Despite its vanishing appeal, the EU remains essential in understanding Turkey's place in regional politics. The Union's expansion has deepened interdependence across South East Europe and transformed the Turkish approach: from power politics to a multidimensional policy reliant on trade, cross-border investment, and projection of soft power. Although Ankara is acting in a growingly unilateralist manner and could be viewed as a competitor in some Western capitals, Turkish policies are benefiting from Brussels and Washington's investment in the stabilisation and integration of the Western Balkans.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Europe, Washington, Turkey, Yugoslavia, Balkans, Brussels
  • Author: Christine Philliou
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Iran, Turkey, Asia
  • Author: F. Stephen Larrabee
  • Publication Date: 02-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The United States has to deal with a very different Turkey today than the Turkey during the Cold War. The disappearance of the Soviet threat has reduced Turkey's dependence on the United States for its security and deprived the U.S.-Turkish security partnership of a clear unifying purpose. At the same time, Turkey's geographic role and interests have expanded. Turkey now has interests and stakes in various regions it did not have two decades ago. It is thus less willing to automatically follow the U.S.'s lead on many issues, especially when U.S. policy conflicts with Turkey's own interests. This does not mean that Turkey is turning its back on the West or the United States. Turkey still wants—and needs—strong ties with the United States. But the terms of engagement have changed. Ankara is a rising regional power and is no longer content to play the role of junior partner.
  • Topic: Security, Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Turkey
  • Author: Kemal Kirisci
  • Publication Date: 04-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: A string of uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt followed by those in other countries have rekindled the issue of Turkey constituting a model for reform and democratization in the Arab world, a point raised by many Western and Arab commentators. Independent of this debate, what is lacking in the literature is an analysis of how come there is a “demand” for the Turkish model. This article develops the concept of a “demonstrative effect” and argues that it is this “effect” that makes the Turkish model of interest to the Middle East and that this “effect” is a function of three developments: the rise of the “trading state”, the diffusion of Turkey's democratization experience as a “work in progress”, and the positive image of Turkey's “new” foreign policy. The concluding part of the article discusses several challenges Turkey has to meet so that its “demonstrative effect” can have a positive impact.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East, Asia, Latin America, Hiroshima
  • Author: Žarko Petrović, Dušan Reljic
  • Publication Date: 07-2011
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The vigor which has characterized the Turkish approach to the Western Balkans since the end of the Cold War has transformed the country into an important regional actor from its previous position as a distant neighbor that showed little interest. Although Turkey and the Western Balkan countries have in the meanwhile achieved the most intensive relationship since the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, Turkey has not yet displayed the economic capacity and political weight that could make it compete with the magnetism of the European Union for Western Balkan countries. Turkish cultural influence, although significantly widened in the last few years, particularly through investments in educational institutions, is mostly limited to the Muslim population in the region. While potential EU membership remains the most important driver for the political elites in the region, the stalled EU membership prospects of both Turkey and the countries of the region might change this in the future.
  • Topic: Cold War, Economics
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Balkans
  • Author: Stefan Höjelid
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: “One spring day towards the end of the cold war, a time of surprises, my teleprinter shuddered into action. A colleague in Beijing was sending a message: members of an ethnic group called the Uygurs, of whom I had never heard, were demonstrating in the streets of Urumqi, capital of the north-western Chinese province of Xinjiang. The protesters were denouncing the communist leadership in Beijing and chanting the name of an exiled leader said to be living in Turkey, a man named 'Isa'. My colleague had a simple and urgent question: Could I trace Isa down?”
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: China, Turkey, Beijing
  • Author: Bezen Balamir Coşkun, Richard Carlson
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkey's energy policy is shaped by issues of energy security, and is based on two aims: avoiding reliance on imported energy sources and supplying energy at a reasonable cost to its population. Within the context of post-Cold War energy geopolitics, Turkey has found itself at the center of supply and demand routes for oil and gas and has evolved as an energy hub. This article analyzes the new global energy geopolitics, then turns to Turkey's energy security perceptions and its placement within the new energy geopolitics. Throughout the article, the latest developments in Turkey's energy policy are examined, and answers to the following questions are sought: How is energy security perceived in Turkey, and hence how are its energy-related policies formulated? What is Turkey's position within global energy security dynamics and why does Turkey matter for the new energy geopolitics?
  • Topic: Cold War, Energy Policy
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Mustafa El-Labbad
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Arab-Turkish relations have always been -- at least since the Cold War -- haunted by the Arab elite's concerns, which with time became an obstacle to viewing Turkey's cultural and strategic dimensions or its national and sectarian components. The majority of the elite have branded Turkey with subordination to an international bloc, taking into consideration the Cold War experience and Turkey's entry into CENTO and then NATO. Reducing Turkey's domestic and regional policies to a narrow framework and viewing it in an ideological perspective prevented them from understanding the changes in a country that strongly affects the region. There is no unified Egyptian perspective on Turkey as the Islamists' views differ from that of the nationalists and the leftists. Overall ideological considerations influence the objective valuation of Turkey's domestic politics as well as its regional policy among the Egyptian elite.
  • Topic: NATO, Cold War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Arabia, Egypt
  • Author: Basheer M. Nafi
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: For centuries, the Arabs and Turks were subjects of the Ottoman Sultanate, and were largely shaped by the dominant Ottoman culture and mode of religiosity. The founding of the Turkish Republic and several Arab states during the 1920s created a new political map in the region and subsequently led to the evolvement of a new Arab consciousness of the modern Turkey. This article explains the role played by four major factors in framing the Turkish image in Arab eyes: interpretations of the Ottoman past, legacy of the Kemalist era, conflicts and alliances of the Cold War period, and the recent rise to power of the Justice and Development Party. The article concludes by underlining the challenges that the Arabs and the Turks are now facing to enhance the relations between them as nations, not subjects of an empire.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Arabia
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: No abstract is available.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Cold War
  • Political Geography: United States, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Hasan Kösebalaban
  • Publication Date: 10-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Conventional models developed through the conceptual lenses of modernization theory dating back to the 1960s, are no longer applicable to Turkish politics; they fall short of grasping the changes that Turkish ideologies experienced in recent decades. In the face of Turkey's growing democratization and societal modernization, Turkish secularists have lost their status as agents of reform and gradually emerged as defenders of the status quo in the face of the rapid mobilization of Anatolian-based conservative society. However, no factor was more responsible for this transformation than the comprehensive external and internal structural changes that Turkey experienced in the post-Cold War era, leading to the emergence of a globalist conservative ideology in large parts of Anatolia. This paper examines the question of why those who are commonly associated in Western scholarly discourse with progress and modernity, have fallen behind the Muslim conservatives in pursuit of democratization and further integration of the country with the West. The paper argues that at the root of the present conflict lies the tension between two modernization routes: a bureaucratic top-down modernization that has allowed the allocation of privileges to the secularist/nationalist elites, and the grassroots socio-economic mobilization of conservative societal elements benefiting from international integration and globalization.
  • Topic: Cold War, Democratization
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Birgül Demirtaş-Coşkun
  • Publication Date: 01-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article seeks to analyze identity discourses in Turkey and Germany in the wake of the end of the bipolar world order. The radical changes taking place in the international system in the late 1980s and early 1990s led to extensive internal debates on state identity in both countries. It is puzzling that despite heavy discussion in Ankara and Berlin, in the end, both retained the former identities they had constructed during the Cold War. Systemic changes resulted in alternative state identity narratives in both countries, without leading to any major change in the direction of foreign policy. One of the main arguments of this paper is that the main reasons behind the preservation of former identities in Turkey and Germany were the political, strategic and economic benefits that both countries had acquired during the Cold War. Another important argument is that Turkish and German state identities based on the "Western" orientation were well-established and resistant, at least, to the alternative models which were being discussed in the post-Cold War era.
  • Topic: Cold War
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Germany, Berlin