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The New Era in Turkish Foreign Policy: Critiques and Challenges

This article examines the critiques directed at Turkish foreign policy during the AK Party administration. There are three basic critiques leveled at the foreign policy that has been followed by the AK Party: Islamist ideology, geopolitical codes, and lack of capacity in foreign policy. These criticisms will be examined through a multi-layered approach, whereby they will be contextualized in terms of global fragmentation (macro level), regional disorder and fragmentation (meso level), and restoration in domestic politics and the opponents within Turkey towards these policies (micro level). A look at the challenges that Turkish foreign policy faces today and the search for a new foreign policy model will follow.

The New Era in Turkish Foreign Policy Critiques and Challenges
The New Era in Turkish Foreign Policy: Critiques and Challenges
 

Introduction

The Arab Spring has significantly destabilized the “geopolitical zone” surrounding Turkey. Although Turkey, at first, viewed these events as opportunities for “democratic restoration,” the Arab Spring has unleashed new dynamics that have turned Turkey’s region into a zone of chronic crisis. Indeed, a new “age of insecurity” has begun in the Middle East, as identity-based animosities and radical tendencies threaten nation-state borders and the principle of sovereignty. These conditions confront Turkish foreign policy with multidimensional challenges and pressures not witnessed during the past decade. In light of President-elect Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s desire to more fully utilize the powers of the presidency to take a more active role in foreign policy, an evaluation of this new period has become necessary for tackling these challenges and generating practical responses to these pressures. 

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