web analytics
December 22, 2014 / 30 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Opportunities and Risks Ahead for Turkey

Now is the time for Ankara to take some corrective domestic and foreign policy measures consistent with what the country has and continues to aspire for but fails to realize.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

Turkey's leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan misinterprets a literary reference to suggest Muslims in Americas pre-Columbus.
Photo Credit: EPA

Turkey is also in conflict with the two countries it once acted between as a mediator — Syria and Israel. Erdogan’s government has finally lost hope in the Assad regime, and joined its allies in imposing sanctions against it, but refrained from taking any decisive measure of its own, fearing Moscow’s wrath. Given the deep animosity and factionalism, the recent agreement between Washington and Moscow to arrange for a conference between the rebels and the Assad government in an effort to end the bloody conflict is not likely to succeed.

But since Turkey will be affected perhaps the most, regardless of the outcome of this conference, it is time for Erdogan to shed its concerns about Russia and persuade the U.S. to plan on supplying the rebels with the weapons desperately needed to tip the balance in their favor and bring a quicker end to the slaughter of civilians. On the Israeli front, Turkey must put behind its conflict with Israel over the sad Mavi Marmara incident in May 2010 that ended with the killing of nine Turks by Israeli commandos aboard the ship.

Israel should have apologized immediately after the incident for the tragic deaths of the Turks, but Israel’s refusal should not have prompted Turkey to downgrade its diplomatic relations with Israel to the lowest level, which clearly did not serve Turkey’s long-term strategic interests.

Now that Israel has apologized, however, Turkey should move quickly to restore full diplomatic relations with Israel and certainly not make it contingent upon the removal of the blockade of Gaza.

Turkey must spare no effort to demonstrate evenhandedness in dealing with Hamas and Israel. Erdogan’s pending visit to Gaza offers a momentous opportunity to persuade Hamas to permanently forsake violence in favor of a political solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Only then would lifting the blockade become a real possibility, provided it is done to the full satisfaction of Israel’s national security concerns. In addition, Erdogan must also use his considerable influence to wean Hamas off of Tehran, which will over time make it more palatable for Israel to deal with Hamas.

To improve the chances of reconciliation between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, Erdogan must not skip the West Bank and meet with Mahmoud Abbas during his visit to the area if he really wishes to play a constructive role.

Finally, Turkey should recognize that its ultimate successes and its efforts to mitigate Russia’s coercive regional policies depend on the strength of its alliance with the United States and on its ability to continue to serve as a positive bridge between East and West.

This year marks the 90th anniversary of the founding of the modern Republic of Turkey by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in 1923. In celebrating the birth of the new republic, there is no better time to take a deeper look at what has taken place since then, especially during the past ten years.

I believe that Turkey is a country that has the potential of becoming a significant global player, but, like any other power, it must also learn its limits.

Turkey’s current rise to prominence was possible because of its promise and implementation of many political, economic and social reforms. These initial successes, however, are not self-perpetuating and must continuously be nurtured.

Only then will Turkey live up to the promise of being the leading Islamic democracy it has set out to be, or it will lose a historic chance to become that kind of a model, especially in the wake of the Arab Spring.

Originally published at The American Thinker.

About the Author: Alon Ben-Meir is a professor of international relations at the Center for Global Affairs at NYU. He teaches courses on international negotiation and Middle Eastern studies. alon@alonben-meir.com Web: www.alonben-meir.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Opportunities and Risks Ahead for Turkey”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Haredi men cast their votes for the 19th Knesset in Bnei Brak, January 22 2013.
New Poll: Shows Netanyahu Will Lead Next Gov’t with Haredim
Latest Indepth Stories
Hanukiyah created world famous Venetian Glass Blower
Maestro Gianni Toso

Let us become modern day Maccabees and seize the day. Embrace the challenge. Fight for Hashem.

Motta Gur overlooks the Old City with his troops during the Six Day War

Har HaBayit is still Biyadein; Through our actions, its fate is in our hands


What does the way we count the days of Chanukah come to teach us about living in the present?

Knesset and Menorah

Israel projects global material illumination not always the light of “morality” meant by the Navi

“Mr. Prime Minister, declare a unilateral ceasefire! Remember, Blessed is the peacemaker!”

“D-e-t-e-r-m-i-n-a-t-i-o-n!”

Hamas is continuing to prepare its next war against Israel instead of improving conditions in Gaza

If the UN Grants national recognition to Palestine, why stop there? Tibet, Chechnya, Basque…

The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.

Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof

What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.

Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

More Articles from Alon Ben Meir
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

Now is the time for Ankara to take some corrective domestic and foreign policy measures consistent with what the country has and continues to aspire for but fails to realize.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/opportunities-and-risks-ahead-for-turkey/2013/05/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: