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


Ömer Taşpınar

The Brookings Institution, and The National War College
Ömer Taşpınar
The Rise of Turkish Gaullism: Getting Turkish-American Relations Right
January 1, 2011
Turkey is becoming more independent and self-confident. Yet, the current analysis on Turkey in most American circles tirelessly refers to the tension between secularism and Islam or Eastern versus Western proclivities. Such focus often comes at the expense of the most powerful force driving Turkish foreign policy: nationalism and self-interest. Turkish-American relations are witnessing a paradigm shift that can be best defined as the rise of Turkish Gaullism. A Gaullist Turkey may in the long run decide to no longer pursue an elusive EU membership. It may even question its military alliance with the United States. Burdened by a sense that it never gets the respect it deserves, Turkey may increasingly act on its own in search of full independence, full sovereignty, strategic leverage and, most importantly, Turkish glory and grandeur.
Obama’s Turkey Policy: Bringing Credibility to “Strategic Partnership”
November 21, 2009
Under the Obama administration, American foreign policy will be engaged in genuine coalition building with allies. Such a return to multilateralism will have a positive impact on transatlantic and Turkish-American relations. Just like under the Clinton presidency during the late 1990s, Turkey needs American support to undo the deadlock with the European Union. America’s return to Middle East diplomacy will also improve Turkish-American relations since the Obama administration is much more likely to support Ankara’s openings to Damascus. Turkey should make an effort to host a new Arab-Israeli peace process in the framework of an international conference in Istanbul. In the short run, Ankara can avoid problems with Washington on the Armenian issue if it decides to enhance its military and civilian support to NATO forces in Afghanistan.
Turkey as a U.S. Security Partner
November 22, 2008
In his latest monograph on Turkey, veteran RAND foreign policy analyst Stephen Larrabee strikes the right cord between analysis and alarm. "Turkey as a U.S. Security Partner" provides a highly readable and balanced account of Turkish-American relations over the last decade. The opening sentence of the report sets the prevailing tone for the study: "In the future, Turkey is likely to be an increasingly less predictable and more difficult ally for the United States:'

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