Turkey’s Grand Plans for Middle East Primacy

Source:The National Interest Date:22Dec2019

A thorugh analysis of Turkey’s regional policy steps and the strategy underneath.  Also, sympathetic to Turkish view.  Yet, this author must remind the readers that Imperial Overreach has been the Achilles Heel of a every great power or wanna-be throughout the history. Ankara might have the military muscle to execute its Grand Mid East Strategy, but it is certainly short of the brown to think it through.


Here is an excerpt from the article explaining how Turkey leverages many assets to reflect power:


The end result is a Turkish foreign policy that has also strayed. It has gone far from the “zero problems” concept of 2008, passing the “neo-Ottoman” concepts to a regional role that is predicated on a few allies but a much larger gambit involving Russia and muscular actions stretching from Tripoli to the border with Iran. In this area, Turkey is expanding its own indigenous defense industry, and trade deals. It is also trying to project itself as involved in global Islamic causes. Turkey has criticized China’s treatment of Uighurs in February and slammed India for its role in Kashmir. It led criticism of Trump’s Jerusalem decision in December 2018, hosting a session of the Organization of the Islamic Conference to oppose it. Erdogan compared Israel to Nazi Germany at the UN in September, part of its attempt to champion the Palestinian cause. It is important to Turkey’s ruling party to play a role in these various “Islamic” issues using both rhetoric and also soft power, such as inaugurating a new mosque in the UK. Ankara said it wanted to work with Pakistan and Malaysia on a new global TV network to “fight Islamophobia” in September. Ankara has also transformed TRT into part of its soft power, like Al-Jazeera is for Qatar or RT for Russia, to push programming that is uncritical of Turkey’s leadership but improves Ankara’s image abroad.