Insight Turkey
Insight Turkey
Challenging ideas
On Turkish politics and International affairs

Author

Kemal İnat

Sakarya University, Türkiye
Kemal İnat
A Century of Türkiye-Europe Relations: Europe’s Diminishing Role
October 2, 2023
This article analyzes the major developments and general trends in Türkiye-Europe relations over the last century to make the main argument that Europe, which had been the main determinant of Turkish foreign policy in recent centuries, has gradually lost that position. Whereas European states, with which Türkiye had the closest economic and political relations at the time of the Republic’s foundation, remain significant in terms of foreign direct investments and external trade today, their share in those fields has notably decreased compared to a century (and even 30 years) ago. During the last two decades, when the global power struggle intensified, European governments opted to adopt an incomprehensible policy of pressure and sanctions against Türkiye’s democratically elected Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government instead of trying to keep the country, a long-time ally, in their corner. This article also discusses why the relevant countries behaved that way and how the Turkish government responded to such behavior.
Turkish Foreign Policy in the Face of Regional and Global Challenges
June 26, 2023
This article essentially posits that Türkiye took advantage of the deepening competition between global powers under the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) to part ways with its traditional foreign policy tradition and pursue a more independent approach. That the country expanded its economic and military capacity significantly during the relevant period to support a balanced policy between the West, Russia, and China is another major argument. To put those claims to the test, this article primarily analyzes the expansion of Türkiye’s economic and military capacity and proceeds to focus on its policy toward the deepening rivalry between the West and Russia (due to the Ukraine war) and how it responded to the “rise of Asia.” Last but not least, this piece analyzes Türkiye’s pursuit of a more independent foreign policy, how the country clashed with the U.S., the European Union, and Russia as well as their allies on the ground, and how Ankara used its policy of balance to keep a lid on those tensions.
Will the Rise of China Transform the International System?
December 14, 2021
In this article, the rise of China is discussed in the light of economic and military data, and what the challenge from China means for the global leadership of the U.S. is analyzed. Changes in the indicators of the U.S. and China’s economic and military power over the last 30-40 years are examined and an answer is sought for the following question: What will the consequences of China’s rise be in terms of the international political system? To answer this question, similar ‘rise and challenge’ precedents are discussed to contextualize and analyze and the present challenge China poses. This article concludes that while improving its global status, China has been taking the previous cases’ failed challenges into consideration. China, which does not want to repeat the mistakes made by Germany and the Soviet Union, is hesitant to pursue an aggressive military policy and tries to limit its rivalry with the U.S. in the economic area. While Chinese policy of avoiding direct conflict and focusing on economic development has made it the biggest economic rival of the U.S, the rise of China initiates the discussions about the end of the U.S. and West-led international system.
Anti-Turkey Sentiment in Europe during the Referendum Process
April 1, 2017
In each era, relations with Europe have constituted one of the most significant areas of Turkish foreign policy. The commentary addresses the interventions into Turkish politics, and the manipulations of different factions in Europe during the process of constitutional referendum held in Turkey on April 16, 2017. The commentary presents the lack of respect for reciprocal sovereignty by examining the policies of ultra left, ultra right and center politicians relating to Turkey during the referendum process.
Economic Relations between Turkey and Germany
January 1, 2016
This paper examines the economic relations between Turkey and Germany, Turkey’s number one trade partner for over a century. It first ascertains that the relations between the two countries are based on mutual interests rather than “historical friendship” or “brotherhood of arms.” Second of all, this paper explains, with data, how trade and mutual investments between Turkey and Germany have been developed. Third of all, this paper determines that the level of economic relations between Turkey and Germany is lower than it should be, considering their foreign policy orientations based on economic interest. Lastly, this paper underlines potential areas of contribution to the development of expanded economic relations.

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