Nagorno Karabakh: Conflict Analysis

Following a long history of power struggles between Armenia and Azerbaijan, skirmishes continued
even after the last full-scale war that brought to a ceasefire in 1994. A new conflict recently erupted
in Nagorno-Karabakh on September 27th, resulting in many civilian casualties on both sides and
increasing tensions world-wide. Calls for de-escalation by the UN and both the US and Russia have
been dismissed by both sides so far. Unresolved geopolitical discrepancies, repeatedly failing
mediation attempts and recurring violations of ceasefire broadly explains this recent escalation.
However, the nuanced story grows more composite every day. 1
2020 Conflict:
On September 27th, president of (Armenia backed de facto state) Republic of Artsakh stated that
Azerbaijan launched an attack on Nagorno-Karabakh unprompted while, Azerbaijan authorities
argued that Armenia had started shelling their border front 2 hours prior and that their attack was
purely in retaliation. 2 Both countries continue making statements in the direction of military
escalation. The conflict is already expanding beyond the Nagorno-Karabakh borders as more than
500 have been killed in the region and thousands have been displaced. 3
A temporary ceasefire was agreed upon at the marathon peace talks held at Moscow on October
5th. However, the calm lasted only hours as both countries blamed each other for breaking the
truce the same day. 4 The conflict resumes on its fourth week and yet another ceasefire brokered by
the US this time was broken in the same day. 5 Global powers and international organizations call for
peace but no solution for peace in sight so far.
Area Profile and Background:
Nagorno-Karabakh is an area internationally recognized to be within the sovereignty of Azerbaijan.
Most of the population in the area is Armenian although there is an ethnic Azeri minority present
too. Civilians of both have been massacred and displaced from the region due to the war atrocities
in the 90s, shifting the general demographic disposition in Nagorno-Karabakh and wider regions.
The ethno-geographic rivalries in the region goes back a thousand years since when numerous
Turkic tribes migrated around and settled in the Eurasian diaspora beginning 11 th century. Armenia
was divided between Byzantine and Sassanid Empires in 387; Artsakh region specifically was
invaded and ruled by Ak Koyunlu and Kara Koyunlu Turkic tribes in the 15 th century and was given
the Turkic name Qarabağ, meaning ‘black garden’. 6 The contemporary crisis however is mainly
blamed on Soviet Union whose inconsistent policies were mainly based on Soviet interest and re-
mapped the region without concern for ethnic dissonances in the long term.
Initially, majority Armenian Nagorno-Karabakh and majority Azeri Nakhichevan were both
appointed to Armenia. This was later overturned, and both were tied to Azerbaijan. Turkey had a
big influence in this, and Azerbaijan was a key factor in its relations with Soviet Union. The wave of nationalism across the world at the end of WWI and the disintegration of the multinational
Ottoman Empire resulted in lasting unresolved complexities. The new-found Turkish Republic
wanted to avoid having a strong Armenia potentially claiming territory and jeopardizing its border
integrity. 7
Besides wanting to have good relations with Turkey, Stalin, (as the Commissar of Nationalities at
the time) also found it strategic to fragment Caucasian ethnic groups to avoid nationalist
unifications and potential resistance towards the Soviet Union. Armenians were split into Armenian
Soviet Socialist Republic and Nagorno-Karabakh Autonomous Oblast, and Azeris were split into the
Soviet Socialist Republic of Azerbaijan and Nakhichevan Autonomous Oblast. 7
With the breakdown of the USSR, regional parliament voted to join Armenia, but the Azeri
inhabitants wanted to stay independent. The vote was rejected by Azerbaijan and territorial
conflicts erupted in between. 8 Armenia occupied 20 percent of the Azeri areas surrounding
Nagorno-Karabakh and took control of them with separatist forces since then although Nagorno-
Karabakh is still internationally recognized as a sovereign territory of Azerbaijan. The de-facto
government Artsakh Republic holding an election in April significantly raised tensions and was
taken as a provocation to war by Azerbaijan. 9 Decades of incoherent territorial shuffling, lack of
political relationships, internal governmental instabilities and nationalistic tenacity of both sides
make diplomatic attempts very difficult.
Alliances and Strategic Positioning:

Meanwhile Turkey’s involvement in this conflict has been widely viewed as a negative influence by
the international media, likely to contribute to the rapid escalation. Turkish military forces and
equipment have been heavily utilized at the forefront of the conflict in Azeri areas and both sides
have been using weaponry provided by Russia. Both Armenia and Azerbaijan have been reported to
heavily hit civilians.
In response to calls for peace from US and France, Turkey argued that these countries have ignored
the situation for too long and their involvement would not be in favor of peace. Indeed, there is a
general mistrust towards the western powers in the east, reinforced by their duplicitous actions in
the Syrian War and dissatisfactory response to the refugee crisis.
Turkey has been accused of relocating Islamist Syrian militias to the region to support Azeri troops
which Turkey and Azerbaijan both have denied. Turkey and Russia have a complex relationship and
are currently in opposing sides of the conflict in Syria. Expansion of the Syrian conflict to the
Russian border is a great concern for Russia and could have grave effects for all countries involved.
Russia presents to be strongly against the conflict as it has favorable relations to both countries. Russia in a mutual defense pact and has a military base in Armenia which some interpret as
Moscow possibly being closer with Yerevan in case of escalation. It is also likely that although a
full-fledged multipolar war on its border is not desirable for Russia, the maintained instability
Nagorno-Karabakh issue prevents the reach of western political influence to the region which
already meant a lot of problems for Russia in the case of Ukraine. Afterall, Russia has been
providing both countries with arms for years and have a continued grip over the ex-Soviet states
allowing Russia great influence in defining regional balances.
Oil rich Iran managed to maintain a neutral position for a while however with its large Azeri
population it became more challenging as the crisis ensues. On Sunday Iran Revolutionary Guards
stated that ground forces have been deployed to the northern border near the conflict upon some
villages reported hit with stray rockets. 10 This is a defensive measure but in case of escalation it is
likely that Iran will be more actively involved.
Considering ethnic, cultural, and religious ties of Turkey with Azerbaijan and historical and
geopolitical position in the region, Turkey has an unavoidable role in this conflict. Whether it will be
a stabilizing or an escalatory one partially depends on whether the international actors will manage
to carry a fair approach. So far EU failed to do more than just condemn the conflict and call for
peace and many member state politicians -most brazenly in France who has a large Armenian
minority- have been showing outward support for Armenia. There were large public
demonstrations across Europe and America in solidarity of Armenia and Artsakh Republic.
Criticism given to Azerbaijan and Turkey by member states may have a fair ground. However, area
specialist Thomas De Waal points out that public trust of the other party towards the international
community gets damaged when same countries do not give criticism to Armenia where it is due. 11
Seven additional regions surrounding Nagorno-Karabakh that were undisputed Azeri districts
occupied and controlled by Armenian forces since the 90s and is a core issue for Azerbaijan’s
grievance and distrust. 12 Western powers always talking about implementing a global standard of
humanity and peace need to hold an educated and balanced stance on this issue in order to have
credibility as diplomatic actors.
Absence of any external intervention from international bodies to this point is mainly because rest
of the world is still focused on battling the pandemic and the South Caucasus is not the most
strategically significant those who can help. The timing of the conflict is seen by some as a tactical
move of President Aliyev, but Olesya Vartanyan of Crisis Group is doubtful that the violence break
out was premeditated. 13 Although an active conflict may briefly distract the Azeri public from its
increasing dissatisfaction with the government, it is more likely upping the stakes for Mr. Aliyev
considering how the government was replaced twice over military failures in the 90s. 13

Energy Interests:

Beyond historic and ethnic discrepancies, an underlying reason causing dispute in the region is its
important position for the global energy trade. Nagorno-Karabakh has some large oil fields that
adds a major financial-interest factor to the conflict and bears the possibly becoming a proxy war
field. Azerbaijan is also a major distributor for oil and gas which is imported to the West through
Turkey. 14 Armenian occupation of Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas leaves Azerbaijan only
with a smally periphery named the Ganja Gap for gas pipes to pass through to Georgia to Turkey
and then to Europe. 15 A fully realized conflict in the region is not only a humanitarian threat but a
threat to European energy security. Therefore, the west should be more diligent about investing in
stability here.
Russia on the other hand could have another strategic advantage from this conflict carrying out
without expanding too much. As mentioned, NATO ally Turkey is a competitor of Russia in
transporting energy to Europe and has shaky but relatively better relationship with the West in
comparison. A safe running Trans-Anatolian Pipeline System route also provides the ability for
Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan to export their vast energy reserve to the West through the Caspian
Sea. Russia has been strongly opposing the development of a subsea pipeline here as this could
seriously threaten Russia’s dominance in the energy trade market and hinder the dependence of
these nations to Russia to sell their most valuable resources. 15
Nagorno-Karabakh may be small and appear insignificant to the outside eye. However especially in
the current climate of multi-polar conflicts, a global pandemic, rise of neo-nationalism and growing
dismay towards international institutions; this conflict could be another fighting arena for
competing powers. International organizations and political actors need to hold the ethno-
geographic, political, and economic nuances of the conflict in consideration and fulfill a less biased
and more stabilizing position for successful diplomacy and peace. Taking part in one sided,
marginalizing discourse on a war with complex influence factors is propagandist and will nothing
more than alienate the ‘other side’ and further exacerbate the conflict. With all that is going on,
Nagorno Karabakh conflict should not be ignored and sincere diplomacy and peacebuilding
processes should be initiated before it grows any further.

1 Global Conflict Tracker. “Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict.” Accessed October 16, 2020.
2 Uras, Umut. “Armenia-Azerbaijan Clashes: Live News.” Accessed October 28, 2020.
3 Editorial, Observer. “The Observer View on Nagorno-Karabakh | Observer Editorial.” The Guardian, October 11, 2020,
sec. Opinion.
4 Welle (, Deutsche. “Nagorno-Karabakh’s Record Growth in Ruins amid Conflict and Pandemic | DW |
12.10.2020.” DW.COM. Accessed October 16, 2020.
5 “Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict: US-Brokered Ceasefire Frays Soon after Starting.” BBC News, October 26, 2020, sec. Europe.
6 Rasizade, Alec. “Azerbaijan’s Prospects in Nagorno-Karabakh.” Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies 13, no. 2 (June
1, 2011): 215–31. | Shepard, Jonathan, ed. 2019. “The Earlier Empire c.
500–c. 700.” Part. In The Cambridge History of the Byzantine Empire C.500–1492, 97–248. Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press.
7 Cornell, Svante E. “Turkey and the Conflict in Nagorno Karabakh: A Delicate Balance.” Middle
Eastern Studies 34, no. 1 (January 1, 1998): 51–72.
8 “Armenia-Azerbaijan: What’s behind the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict?” BBC News, September 28, 2020, sec. Europe.
9 Bagirova, Nvard Hovhannisyan, Nailia. “Armenia and Azerbaijan Accuse Each Other of Violating Nagorno-Karabakh
Ceasefire.” Reuters, October 11, 2020.
10 Euronews. “Nagorno-Karabakh: New Ceasefire Struck but Both Sides Allege Breaches,” October 26, 2020.
11 De Waal, Thomas, “The Caucasus Burns While Europe Struggles.” 2020. Carnegie Europe. Accessed October 28.
12 “The Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict Explained.” 2020. POLITICO. September 28.
13 Hauer, Neil. 2020. “Armenia and Azerbaijan Are at War Again—and Not in Nagorno-Karabakh.” Foreign Policy. Accessed
October 28.
14 “Fragile Oil and Gas Interests at Stake for Azerbaijan, Russia and Turkey in Nagorno-Karabakh.” Accessed October 16,
15 MPSG. 2020. “The Strategic Energy Implications of the 2020 Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict.” MP Strategic Group. October


Author: Berna Yusein

Visits: 298

Historical Perspective of the Karabakh Conflict and the Identities

In the last couple of weeks, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict which is called ‘frozen
conflict’ in terms of International Relations has come to the international and regional agenda
once more again. The future of the Nagorno-Karabakh is being asked repeatedly. However,
there is more than the future, the past. It is significant how the Nagorno-Karabakh is
perceived by both sides in this conflict. Also, it is unlikely unforeseen that any
agreements or compromise without the consent of two ‘publics’. Since Karabakh is perceived
as a constituent of public identity for both Azerbaijanis and Armenians. Armenians blame the
refusing of the Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent state by the Azerbaijani government.
Yet most of the people misunderstood Azerbaijan’s vision towards Karabakh and
significance of Karabakh for the Azerbaijani people as well, historically.
Karabakh is a longstanding and ideational element of the Azerbaijani identity.
Karabakh means as traditionally and culturally birthplace of many Azerbaijani
composers, writers and intellectuals. The historical capital of Karabakh is called as ‘St. Petersburg
of Azerbaijan’.

Azerbaijani people, in the matter of Karabakh, have their origins in 1987. First attempt
to kill and evict the Azerbaijani people held in 1987 by the Armenians. Following that, one of
the heartbreaking massacre ‘Khojaly Massacre’ , where hundreds of Azerbaijanis people
were killed, occurred in 1992. For the Azerbaijani people, massacres and their bereavements
are not forgettable moments. In addition to massacres, the Karabakh War, which was in between
1988-1994, caused approximately 600.000 internally displaced persons in Azerbaijan. Before
the occupation of Karabakh by the Armenian forces, almost all the people in Karabakh was
Azerbaijani people. However, along with the occupation, numerous Azerbaijanis's population
nearly bottomed out. Internally displaced persons still have some problems such as finding
jobs in big cities due to their agricultural past.

All of these have effects on the Azerbaijani people and policy-makers in Azerbaijan
politics. Sensitivity attitude of Azerbaijani people limits the range of policies for policy-
makers. For instance, many of the leaders such as Mutalibov and Elchibey resigned due to the
public pressure. Another example is that President Heydar Aliyev saw as favorable to the
Goble Plan aims to united Nagorno-Karabakh. However, President Aliyev faced
negative reactions from his advisers as well as the public. As a result of these negative
reactions, negotiations have failed.

On the other side of the conflict, the Armenian public is so sensitive towards the
Karabakh, too. Armenian public attitudes and policies of the opposition political parties are no
less radical on the issue of Karabakh. Karabakh is historically important for Armenia and
Armenian identity. Armenian society apply public pressure and raise their voice on the
Nagorno-Karabakh. To illustrate this public pressure, Armenian President Ter-Petrosyan was
eager to reach a common ground in terms of the Karabakh Conflict in the late 1990s. Following
that, he had to resign consequently in 1998. It is clearly proclaimed that any dialogue or
compromise on the Karabakh conflict would be ended with the deposition of government or
deadlock. Furthermore, the rights of the Azerbaijani refugees have rejected by the leaders of
the self-proclaimed Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. For the Azerbaijani society, recognizing the independence of Nagorno-Karabakh without the right of Azerbaijani refugees is unfair and unacceptable.

All of these examples clearly point out that the background of Azerbaijani and
Armenian society who radicalized day by day as well as the significance of understanding of
identity in terms of Karabakh during the compromise process.
From an international perspective on Karabakh Conflict, the international community has
tried to reach a consensus to the actual conflict which started in 1988 and ended in 1994 with the
ceasefire by the assistance of the OSCE Minsk Group. However, any attempt to ‘create’ a
common ground to give an end to the active phase of the war has been ineffective. Nevertheless,
Azerbaijan and Armenia agreed to follow some steps which formed under the Madrid
Principles since 2007. It was a general framework on the occupied regions, Azerbaijani
refugees and negotiation through the Nagorno-Karabakh. Despite the numerous United
Nations Security Council resolutions (e.g resolutions.822,853,874,884) and internationally
recognized status of Azerbaijan’s territorial integrity by the international community, Madrid
Principles have never put into practice for the reasons of lack of international efforts and
radicalized publics.

The ongoing Karabakh Conflict is like a chicken game that both sides willing to
continue their position until come to a catastrophic end. Nowadays, some of Armenians call
for peace and ceasefire yet neither peace nor ceasefire actualized due to the Azerbaijani
opposition to the continuation of the status quo by the reason of claiming a new status quo in this
region. In addition to that, in spite of the numerous UN Resolutions, which constitute a legal
basis for Azerbaijan’s claims, Azerbaijan has not been able to call attention to this
situation. Thus, the conflict on Karabakh increasingly continues on the field.

This article is written by Evren Gönen

Visits: 271

China in Balkans from the EU Perspective


In the early 2000s, China started to take an active role around the world. On the other hand,
we see that it started to be active in the Balkans after Xi Jinping’s examination of the Belt
Road Project, which extends from Asia to the Balkans, was announced in 2013. Subsequently,
67% of the Greece-Piraeus Port, which is the second-largest port of the Mediterranean, was
acquired by China in 2016. With the acquisition of this port, China took the task of
transporting the goods coming to Piraeus to Europe via the Balkans.
Although China seems to be very active in trade in the Balkans, its share of trade with
Balkan countries is only 5%. Only half of this percentage is with Serbia. Also, although the
EU gets worried about this situation, China is not an opponent of the EU. However, the
president of the EU Commission Ursula Von der Layen defended that the Balkans are not a
stop on the Silk Road but a part of Europe, and she emphasized that China’s presence in the
Balkans causes three difficulties: making countries dependent on itself by confining them in
debt, preventing the environmental standards demanded by the EU, and the continuity of
If we examine the above-mentioned effects of China in the Balkans, it is firstly defended by
the EU that China has an active role in the region through borrowing. They explain this as
China’s fast and cheap meeting of infrastructure needs in the Balkans, providing loans to
Balkan states and thus increasing its political influence in the Balkans. An example is the
selection of a Chinese company for the highway project in Montenegro, and Montenegro’s
high debt to China. As a result of these situations, Montenegro, which has made many legal
regulations, has been under the influence of China and is also in a debtor position and has
difficulties in granting EU membership. Secondly, the environmental regulation conditions
signed as Energy Treaty are not applied. While the use of fossil fuels should be reduced and
the use of renewable energy sources should increase, China started investing in coal power
plants in the Balkans. Finally, the Anti-Corruption Reform was prepared in order to ensure the
democracy deemed necessary for the membership of the Balkans to the EU, to accept the rule
of law and to adopt respect for human rights; however, this reform is not implemented and it
is claimed that China also supports this situation. In addition, China’s biggest problem with
this issue is that it is not transparent in the Belt and Road Project.
In addition to the three main reasons mentioned above and defended by the EU, one of the
reasons why China is effective in the Balkans is the good use of its soft power. With the

Confucius Institutes opening, China provided cultural transfer for the public of the Balkans.
Besides, China’s ability to hold on so tightly in the region is that it uses its development model
with its capital and brings wealth to the Balkans. Accordingly, the public is against the
attitude of the EU towards China. On the other hand, if we look at it historically, the main
reason why China took its place in the Balkans so easily is the power vacuum created by the
EU in the Balkans by seeing the Balkans as inferior and inadequate. Combined with the
Euroskepticism that emerged in the 2010s, China took a step and made progress. However, all
these have not prevented the EU from giving up its fundamental interests in the Balkans
today, and the need for the unification of the Balkans and Europe was discussed.
In summary, China started to be active in the Balkans in the 2010s and started this with the
Belt and Road Project. Although China used trade afterward, its main point was that China
brought wealth to the Balkans by using its soft power and capital effectively and quickly.
However, China’s activism has emerged that three major shortcomings from the EU’s
perspective in the Balkans: borrowing and dependence on China, low environmental
standards, and the continuation of corruption. According to the EU, all these consequences
prevent the Balkans from joining the EU, on the other hand, the EU does not want to give up
its fundamental interests in the Balkans. The President of the EU Commission and the
presidents of the EU Commission member states made statements and expressed that they
want the Balkans to join the EU fully and to reduce the influence of China due to the
problems created in the region. But how likely is this to happen?


“AB Komisyonu Başkanı von Der Leyen: Batı Balkanlar’ın Yeri AB’dir, Bununla Ilgili Hiçbir

Şüphe Yok,” Euronews, May 6, 2020,

“Von Der Leyen: Western Balkans Are Part of Europe, Not Just a Stopover on the Silk Road,”
European Western Balkans, September 16, 2020,

Gamze Ayan Çakmak, “Batı Balkanlar’da Çin-AB Rekabeti,” Diplomasi ve Strateji Dergisi The
Journal of Diplomacy and Strategy, n.d.,
Robin Emmott Aleksandar Vasovic, “EU Aims to Counter Chinese, Russian Influence at Balkan

Summit,” Reuters, May 6, 2020,

This article is written by Buse Bakkaloğlu

Visits: 143

Intelligence and Decision Making

Intelligence is in reality important to the renovation and enlargement of political
and navy power. In practice, intelligence not often impacts the dedication of coverage even
though it does happen. Intelligence does now no longer exist in simple terms for its very
own sake. Taking the important motion is the remaining step of the intelligence cycle even
though it isn't always named withinside the intelligence sports list.
National safety generally encompasses all of the subjects of overseas policy.
Intelligence each serves countrywide protection and overseas policy.
Many governments keep a few sorts of intelligence functionality as a depend of
survival in a global in which risks and uncertainties nonetheless exist.
One essential motive for the lifestyles of the intelligence network is the
cause of lowering uncertainty on political and army issues.
There are numerous causes approximately how and why the coverage system
varies. One difference is among disaster and non-disaster coverage. Non-disaster coverage is
an issue to wider dialogue and dissent and might also be determined via way of means of
decrease tiers of the government.

There are several models of the foreign policy process.

-Rational-Actor Model.
-Bureaucratic Model.
There are four care elements of national interest. The center detail of countrywide hobby is countrywide protection presenting for the bodily protection of a country's
citizens. The detail is presenting for the financial prosperity of the counti'y insofar as it's
far suffering from the delivery of resources, exchange balances, economic alternate rates,
and different elements of the worldwide political economy. The third detail of countrywide hobby is presenting a good political environment. A fourth countrywide hobby detail is making sure countrywide cohesion.
Tools consist of a navy instrument, penetration and intervention instrument, diplomatic
installment and covert operations. Penetration and intervention include looking
to manage every other country's home political state of affairs and process. Methods consist
of direct, authorities-to-authorities negotiations and imparting its case withinside the area of
a worldwide organization.

Decision-makers typically have little know-how of the complete intelligence cycle.
There are seven factors of Decision Makers and Intelligence.
1) Personality and Leadership Style
2) Setting Priorities
3) Understanding the World of Intelligence
4) Politicizing Intelligence
5) Lack of Coordination
6) Understanding the Intelligence Product
7) Measures of Effectiveness for Intelligence


This article is written by Yasemin Erge

Visits: 111

Power in Middle East

The Middle East is a transcontinental region in Afro-Eurasia which generally includes
Western Asia, all of Egypt, and Turkey. Also, its importance comes from not only being
transcontinental but also having an energy source of oil. This situation results in a want to
have an active role in Middle East states which are there as well as external ones. Because of
that, there are always either conflicts or wars in that region. Many powerful states which are
the USA, Russia, China, etc get a goal that is being the leader and effective power in the
Middle East.
Iraq, which got rid of the British mandate in the 1930s, went through turbulent times in
domestic politics. In addition to riots and assassination attempts against those who happened,
social life was also not very regular. By the end of the 1970s, the Ba’ath Party and Saddam
Hussein wanted to be active in foreign policy as well as being active in domestic politics.
Accordingly, when the Iranian leader wanted to bring down Saddam by addressing the Shiites,
a war was fought with Iran in 1980-89. It is difficult to say that the winner is the result. In
addition, Kuwait was occupied in 1990 to dominate the Persian Gulf and gain oil and
leadership. With these situations, they have a say in the Middle East. However, the USA
invaded Iraq in 2003 due to both the September 11 events and the occupation of Kuwait. This
occupation lasted until 2011, and then the Arab Spring began. All of these prevented Iraq’s
internal gathering and regulation. With the emergence of the terrorist organization DAESH,
the leadership goal fell through.
We can see Egypt as the most developed state of the Middle East and the Arab world.
Between the years 1952-67, it was the most powerful country with the policies of Cemal
Abdül Nasır. He also rejected the Baghdad Pact against the Soviets in the bipolar system of
the Cold War and told the Arabs to stay away. In addition to these, he nationalized Suez in
1956 and made his country the leader of the Middle East. However, during the reign of his
successor Enver Sadat, he lost prestige in the Arab world with the peace made with Israel.
During the period of Hosni Mubarak, steps to rise to leadership were not taken, and internal
problems arose with the coup of Abdulfettah Sisi. The only advantage is that it can continue to
be the second most aid from the US.
Iran made a revolution with Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979 and opposition to both the USA
and the West was initiated. Progress was made with the motto “neither East nor West only
Islam”. Its goals include establishing a Shia crescent through Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. In

addition, it is aimed to be the dominant power in the Gulf region without accepting foreign
intervention. Accordingly, the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003 has come
to Iran’s interest. Besides, with the 2010 Arab Spring, with the outbreak of civil war in Syria
and the internal turmoil in Egypt, Iran did not rival regional empowerment. It also increased
its influence in Yemen, Syria, and Iraq. With the emphasis on nuclear studies, we can see that
Iran is now an important power in the region.
Saudi Arabia is trying to lead with the Sunnite sect. This situation puts Iranian Shiites

against each other. Consequently, proxy wars broke out in Yemen after the Arab Spring. Non-
state groups and sects clashed. It is difficult to say a clear result. Besides, the destabilization

of Iraq and the coup in Egypt gave Saudi Arabia a chance for regional leadership. In the
leadership of the region, a status quo approach was followed and a theocratic ground was
formed. In addition, the fact that the center of the Gulf Cooperation Council, which was
established in 1981, is Riyadh has given Saudi Arabia a positive effect. Also, relations with
the USA are very good.
Founded in 1948, Israel recently decided to abandon its hostility towards Arabs and become
collaborators with them. The biggest factor in this matter is the desire of countries to come
together against the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear studies and policies in general. The first
rapprochement was with Egypt and Jordan, and agreements were signed with Bahrain and the
United Arab Emirates about two weeks ago. Moreover, the USA is Israel’s biggest supporter.
In addition to all of these, Israel has a goal of becoming an effective power in the region
rather than being a regional leader. For this, both military and political steps are taken.
As a result, in the Middle East region, there are many countries which are Syria, Iraq,
Qatar, Cyprus, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Iran, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates,
Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tunisia, Algeria, Libya,
Sudan, Morocco; but in that writing, we examined five important countries which are Iraq,
Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Israel which have a goal of being the leader or effective power
in the Middle East. The relations they establish with each other and with countries outside the
region, their policies towards the region, their threat perceptions, and their relations shaped by
their allies serve to be the regional leader determined as a target by Middle Eastern countries.
Besides, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Iran are the states that have taken the lead in the region, but
it is very difficult to emerge a “full” leader due to the USA, Russia, and China’s influence in
the region.

This article is written by Buse Bakkaloğlu


Visits: 138

How is Davutoglu’s Strategic Depth viewed from the perspective of Turkic and Non-Turkic countries in the Caspian Region?

After the Kemalist revolution of 1923, Turkey started to pursue Western modernism with stabile and
isolationist policy from their East neighbors and with the rejection of Ottoman culture. However,
defensive and isolationist Western policy changed by Turgut Özal’s neo-Ottomanism approach.
Demirel’s argument of the Turkish world from the Adriatic to the Chinese Wall in the 1990s was significant to
the Caspian region (Efegil, 2008, p.167). This paper argues that despite Davutoglu’s “strategic depth” has
good intentions, this doctrine is mostly failed against Turkic and non-Turkic countries in the realities and
complexities of the Caspian region. This paper will first explain the strategic depth doctrine and will
afterward apply and assess this doctrine to Turkic and non-Turkic countries.
Turkey is a regional power in strategic depth. In this doctrine, Davutoglu utilizes Machiavellian classical
realism with stressing the importance of geography, history, culture and considers economic, and
military as potential powers. Thus, Davutoglu sees Turkey as a central country that possesses
a geographical and historical leadership role to its neighbors which is compatible with the definition of
regional power theory. Turkey uses soft power like economic interdependence, cultural platforms and
cooperative security as theoretical frameworks of regional power. Additionally, Turkey influences the
Caspian region and is therefore recognized by other states with its soft power. (Kardaş, 2010, p.124).
Strategic depth considers Turkey as a hinterland that emerges from the Ottoman Empire (Özkan, 2014,
p.119), whereas Turkey needs to remove its isolationist policies by multiple alliances to counterbalance
EU. According to Davutoglu, Turkey can’t reach the Caspian Sea and therefore Turkey needs to have
sea strategy for controlling other sea routes that are connected to the Caspian Sea (Aktoprak, 2003,
p.176). Hence, Turkey needs to collaborate with Russia and Iran (Davutoglu, 2001, p. 32). In this way
Turkey will increase its area of maneuver without aligning either with West or East. Given that Turkey
can utilize its unique historical, cultural and bridge role of connecting East and West characteristics, are
what makes Turkey special in strategic depth.
Particularly, strategic depth is the depth of geography which considers Turkey as a continental basin
under the capacity of being a Middle Eastern, Caucasian, Western and Mediterranean country, which
furthermore derives from Ottoman legacy rule to three continents and its historical depth of multiple
cultures in these continents. Davutoglu provides the elements of multidimensional, proactive, and
rhythmic diplomacy, zero problems with neighbors, pragmatism and mediation as characteristics of
Turkey’s new policy. Hence, Turkey pursues an integrated regional policy since it has multiple regional

Additionally, Turkey considers the all-inclusive policy of taking NGOs and every state into cooperation
(Aras, 2009, p. 133), while its global role is shifted from Western military deterrent and peripheral
country to the central country. Hence, Turkey’s secular democracy can bring stability and peace to the
Caspian states. The latter gains more attention since the strategic depth represents both neo- Ottomanism
and Eurasianism with Islamic conservatism without Turkish ethnic domination but rather cooperation
(Tüysüzoğlu, 2014, p.99).
Russia is the biggest test for the strategic depth doctrine. Turkey removed its skepticism towards Russia
and shifted its relations from an enemy state to an economical ally state after 1990 with increasing
economic relations during the Putin era. Davutoglu argues that Turkey needs to implement a strategy of
close cooperation with Turkic states against Russia’s unilateralism in the Caspian Sea. Turkey’s new
multidimensional and inclusive policy allows Turkey to remain neutral between Russia and the West while
increasing its economic relations with Russia. Turkey pursued a multilateral diplomacy policy in the
Russian-Georgian crisis of 2008 in order to balance Russian unilateralism with the Caucasian
Cooperation and Stability Platform which consists of Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Russia and Turkey
without external powers (Aras, 2009, p. 136). This platform is created because of the failure of Minsk
group and was the only solution for Turkey to provide peace and stability, since Turkey’s political
actions are restricted because of its economic dependency on Russia. Therefore, Georgia is crucial for
Turkey to decrease the Russian dependency, and in the same way it is an ally for Turkey since they both
support Western democracy. Turkey considers Georgia geographically important since the main routes
of BTC and BTE pipeline routes pass through Georgia because of the ethnic and historical conflicts with
Armenia. Consequently, Turkey seeks to solve Georgian crisis by CSCP for to be energy hub between
Caspian and West.
However, the CSCP platform is unsuccessful for the following reasons; Firstly, because of the
asymmetrical dependence and secondly because of Turkey’s non inclusive approach for not taking EU,
US even Iran to cooperate was accredited as a big mistake (Jackson, 2011, p.88). Hence, this crisis
demonstrates that strategic depth failed in the real complex of the Caspian politics. Turkey could gain geopolitical advantage neither from the US nor from Russia because of this policy. This crisis was
difficult for Turkey since it needs to make a binary choice between Russia and the US and similarly
between Armenia and Azerbaijan in Karabakh. Turkey restricted the passing of US military ships in
straits in accordance to the Montreux agreement during this crisis. Consequently, Turkey used its soft
power with providing only humanitarian aid to Georgia and having a mediation role between Russia and
Georgia. This crisis occurred to prevent NATO’s military expansion in Georgia, whereas Russia
legitimized these actions in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

Moreover, Turkey recognizes the Russian dominance with including Russia in every cooperation, which
is compatible with the strategic depth doctrine. From this doctrine, Russia is naturally allied to
counterbalance EU and with also converging interest to fight against radical Islamism (Walker, 2007,
Besides, apart from the energy disputes, e.g. the BTC and BTE pipelines, Turkey balances this with the
Blue Stream pipeline. (Davutoglu, 2008, p.91). Russia is critical for Turkey to illustrate to the Turkic
states that Turkey cooperates with a common share of identity and interest rather than Pan-Turkism or
imperial desires. The great game of transferring energy sources of Caspian to Europe can create
conflicts among Russia and Turkey (Çaman, Akyurt, 2011, p.55). Turkey’s economic dependency on
Russia is an obstacle for the implementation of the strategic depth, and is therefore suggested that
Turkey can decrease this dependency through Iran and Turkmenistan and not only with Azerbaijan. This
dependency restricts Turkey’s political freedom in the Russian-Georgian crisis. Given that Turkey should
not allow Russia to impose dominance on Turkic countries, only the realistic policies of strategic
partnerships with Turkic countries, render this possible rather than adopting a “big brother” behavior.
Turkey’s biggest disadvantage is Russia’s historical political and cultural assimilation process on Turkic
states during the Soviet Union, which clarifies that both sides need to be cautious on ethnic issues like
Chechen and Kurdish people. According to Davutoglu, Turkey should not leave the mediation role to
Russia in Karabakh. Gradually, after 1990, Russia was successful in terms of filling the vacuum of
geopolitics in the Caspian rather than Turkey. This could be interpreted because of Turkey’s lack of
domestic economic and political stability, which illustrates that the strategic depth lost against Russia.
The triangle of Azerbaijan-Armenia and Turkey is a deadlocked process. Unfortunately, the strategic depth
of Turkey in this triangle is also unsuccessful. Azerbaijan is the closest ally and strategic partner for
Turkey, and although the Karabakh issue threatens Azerbaijan’s sovereignty, it remains unsolved
despite Turkey’s and Russia’s mediations. Davutoglu argues that Turkey needs to have an energy strategy
and partnership with Azerbaijan without allowing the creation of an alliance among Russia, Iran and
Armenia against Turkey (Davutoglu, 2001, p.24). Although this energy strategy is compatible with the
strategic depth policy, however, this did not happen in the realities of Caspian. Davutoglu in his strategic
depth analysis rejects Samuel Huntington’s clash of civilizations ideology however the Karabakh
issue between Azeri and Armenian people is a clash of civilization (Murinson, 2006, p.949). Strategic
depth respects multiculturalism but real politics prevent this. The normalization process and diplomatic
talks with Turkey and Armenia in 2009 was a huge development. This normalization policy is convenient
with the strategic depth for the following three reasons; firstly, it will attribute a mediation opportunity to Ankara; Secondly, it will enhance Ankara’s regional role and finally, it will render possible the
Nabucco pipeline operation. If Turkey manages to have good relation with Armenia without losing
Azerbaijan, then Russia will lose its control on pipelines. However, this protocol was not put into
practice because of the Karabakh issue. Turkey’s normalization process also damaged its closest ally,
Azerbaijan. Consequently, it is obvious that the Karabakh conflict creates a huge dilemma in this
triangle, in which Armenia prefers to be allied with Russia and Iran (Aras, 2009, p.4). Armenian
arguments of the 1915 genocide, which is a major problem for Turkey, since the genocide accusations,
renders unsuccessful the strategic depth, especially due to the Armenian historical conflict with Ottoman
and pan Turkism in the Caspian (Jackson, 2011, p.83). Hence, Turkey needs to use its economic
interdependence card against Armenia to incentive them to cooperate on energy pipelines mainly
because Armenia’s economy totally deteriorated after the bombardment of Georgian ports by
Russia in 2008, which undoubtedly resulted in the loss of Armenia’s economic partner, Georgia. The
football diplomacy among Turkey and Armenia is also unsuccessful due to the nationalist domestic
pressures of both sides, the genocide arguments, the diaspora of Armenians and the Karabakh issue.
Although Turkey was one of the first states that recognized Armenia’s independence and invited the
latter as a founding member of the Black Sea Cooperation, this triangle illustrates that strategic depth is
not succeeding due to deep historical and ideational conflicts, which prevent any peace progress and
cause zero-sum policies (Aras, Akpınar, 2011, p.61). Azerbaijan is therefore the last ally for Turkey to
be the energy hub, with also the help of Georgia.
Turkey has to acknowledge that all post-Soviet Turkic countries do not want to be dependent on any
single power and do not seek any country for a role model (Walker, 2007, p.43). Although Western
powers consider and hope Turkey to be a role model in this region, in order to remove Iran’s dangerous
radical Islamism and Russia’s geopolitical desires, Turkey was unsuccessful in this role. The Turkish
public opinion is sensitive towards the Turkic countries since they consider them as “fatherland of
ethnic Turks”. However, Turkic populations do not consider themselves as Turkish, thus this is a crucial
common misunderstanding. Hence, Turkey needs to perceive Turkic countries as they are. TIKA is
founded for giving aid to Turkic countries (Çaman, Akyurt, 2011, p.47). This is the soft power of
Turkey in the areas of economics, culture, language, history in line with the strategic depth
understanding. Turkey facilitates the ground for increasing their voice in international institutions with
its “door opening and right advocating” role. In parallel, the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO),
Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA), Turkic Council are organizations that consist of
Turkey and Turkic states. Turkey and Kazakhstan have joint economic Commission and High Level
Strategic Cooperation Council and achieved agreement on security and terrorism. However, since there are disagreements among Turkic states, Turkey only achieved bilateral cooperation instead of multilateral relationships. Therefore, Turkey needs to have realistic and pragmatic policies towards these states instead of unfounded expectations and speeches. Turkey’s lack of economic success and political instability allowed Russia to fill this geostrategic role, which resulted in the defeat of both Turkey and Iran against Russia in terms of controlling the Turkic states. Turkey has to recognize the dominance of
Iran and Russia and needs to cooperate with them in order to increase its influence.
Moreover, the establishment of the Turkic Council is a huge achievement for Turkey which it can
increase this kind of soft power for the implementation of realistic goals. According to Aras, Turkey
fails to sufficiently understand international factors and its misperceptions are the reasons for the failure
of Turkish policy in the Caspian. Turkey supports the policy of “One Nation, Two States” towards
Turkic states, and it additionally supports Turkmenistan’s neutral status, regardless of the fact that their
interactions are limited to tourism, culture and official visits. TURKSOY, TDV and TDRA are cultural,
religious and educational organizations in the region (Aras, 2000, p.45), and in the meantime, the high
transfer of students from Caspian to Turkey, is valuable for integration. Therefore, strategic depth is
partially successful to Turkic countries. This success depends mostly on Turkey’s soft power in cultural,
education, historical and language councils to these regions. However, Turkey lost the ground to Russia
in terms of both geopolitical and geo-economical grounds except Azerbaijan.
Concerning Iran, Turkey utilized its strategic depth policy against Iran, thus it supported the Iranian
peaceful nuclear program during the US sanctions (Murinson, 2006, p.960). They agreed on fighting
against the PKK terrorism in Syria. Turkey cooperates with Iran for increasing the bargaining power
against the Russian gas dependency in compliance with the strategic depth, whereas Turkey also
defeated Iranian Islamism in Turkic states. Since Iran has economic restrictions due to sanctions, most
Turkic states prefer to choose the Turkish liberal economy (Goudarzi, Lashaki, Lakani, 2015, p.127).
However, neither Iran nor Turkey could take Russia’s geopolitical role in the Caspian. Although Iran
has the most compatible and safe energy route for pipelines, Azerbaijan chose Turkey for cooperation
because of Iran’s support to Armenia and Iran’s Islamic threat to Azerbaijan’s Western democracy. Aras
argues that Turkey’s constructive de-securitization process on political Islam and Kurdish separatism
caused to have good relations with Iran (Aras, Polat, 2008, p.496). Consequently, the strategic depth is
successful in the eyes of Turkic states against Iran in Caspian.
Consequently, I think the strategic depth doctrine has good intentions for making the Turkish foreign
policy success with regards to its geographical and historical depth of Ottoman legacy. However, this
is achievable in peaceful regions and not in complex and unstable cases, such as the Caspian Sea. This is
because of the strategic depth’s neo-Ottomanism, Islamic tendency and pan Turkism, which are not good strategies towards the Turkic and non-Turkic countries. The latter could be interpreted from the
fact that all states in the Caspian do not seek any role model; in contrary they want to be independent
and act according to their interests. Therefore, strategic depth is achievable ıf it is used on economic
interdependence and mutual interests. Thus, Turkey had success towards Azerbaijan but unfortunately
failed against other Turkic states. Turkic states mostly prefer to cooperate with US, EU and Russia.
Consequently, strategic depth failed in the eyes of Turkic states and non-Turkic states. This role is filled
by Russia because of Turkey’s not realistic policies and lack of domestic economic and political


 Aktoprak, E. (2003). Stratejik Derinlik: Türkiye'nin Uluslararası Konumu.
 Aras, B. (2009). The Davutoglu era in Turkish foreign policy. Insight Turkey, 127-142.
 Aras, B. (2000). Turkey's policy in the former Soviet south: Assets and options. Turkish
Studies, 1(1), 36-58.
 Aras, B. (2009). Turkey and the Russian Federation: an emerging multidimensional
partnership. SETA Policy Brief, 35.
 Aras, B., & Karakaya Polat, R. (2008). From conflict to cooperation: Desecuritization of Turkey's
relations with Syria and Iran. Security Dialogue, 39(5), 495-515.
 Bülent, A., & Akpinar, P. (2011). The relations between Turkey and the Caucasus. Perceptions:
Journal of International Affairs, 16(3), 53-68.
 Çaman, M. E., & Akyurt, M. A. (2011). Caucasus and Central Asia in Turkish Foreign Policy: The
Time Has Come for a New Regional Policy. Alternatives: Turkish Journal of international
relations, 10.
 Davutoğlu, A. (2001). Stratejik Derinlik: Turkiye'nin Uluslararasi Konumu (Turkish Foreign Policy).
Retrieved from
 Davutoglu, A. (2008). Turkey's foreign policy vision: an assessment of 2007. Insight Turkey, 77-96.
 Efegil, E. (2008). Turkish AK Party’s Central Asia and Caucasus policies: critiques and
suggestions. Caucasian Review of International Affairs, 2(3), 166-172.
 Goudarzi, M. R., Lashaki, A. B., & Lakani, S. F. M. (2015). Turkish Foreign Policy in South
Caucasus and Its Impacts in Iran-Azerbaijan Relationship. J. Pol. & L., 8, 122.

 Jackson, A. (2011). The Limits of Good Intentions: The Caucasus as a Test Case for Turkish Foreign
Policy. Turkish Policy Quarterly, 9, 81-92.
 Kardaş, Ş. (2010). Turkey: redrawing the Middle East map or building sandcastles?. Middle East
Policy, 17(1), 115-136.
 Murinson, A. (2006). The strategic depth doctrine of Turkish foreign policy. Middle Eastern
Studies, 42(6), 945-964.
 Ozkan, B. (2014). Turkey, Davutoglu and the idea of Pan-Islamism. Survival, 56(4), 119-140.
 Tüysüzoğlu, G. (2014). Strategic depth: A neo-Ottomanist interpretation of Turkish
Eurasianism. Mediterranean Quarterly, 25(2), 85-104.
 Walker, J. W. (2007). Learning strategic depth: implications of Turkey's new foreign policy
doctrine. Insight Turkey, 32-47.

This article is written by Senad Sevdik

Visits: 123


Following the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1990, the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina
in 1992 has provided serious human tragedy in the Balkan region. This article investigates the
article of “Decision to Intervene: How the War in Bosnia Ended” from the author of Ivo
H.Daalder. The main research question of this article concerns why did United States finally
decide to intervene Bosnia and end the war in the summer of 1995. Hence, this article points
out how the international community such as the UN, the US, NATO and internal actors
finally agreed to end the war and create the Dayton agreement as well as why this decison
reached so late in 1995. Hence, this analysis will first explain and analyze the main arguments
and the key breaking points of the article. Secondly, it will assess the research gap of article
and its methodology. Finally, this paper will explain the theoretical framework of Daalder’s
article and then conclude with giving crucial suggestions to the Bosnia issue.
One of the main arguments of Daalder is that Clinton’s administration strategy of the day-today crisis management proved to be a great mistake during the Bosnian war. Hence, in order
to save and protect the US’s prestige in the world and to gain next elections, Clinton’s
administration decided to take more decisive and integrated strategy towards the Bosnian war.
According to the Daalder, the Srebrenica massacre and the human tragedy were the main
purposes of the alteration and the dramatic shift of the Clinton administration policy towards
Bosnia (Daalder, 2016). After this massacre, the US was decided to protect all safe regions of
Gorazde, Sarajevo, Tuzla and Bihac from the attacks of Bosnian Serbs. Another crucial point
is the disagreement between international actors concerning the lack of common consensus
for how to end the war. For example, when NATO started to protect the safe areas of Bosnia
with air strikes, this resulted in hostage keeping of peacekeepers in the region. In parallel, the
United Nations force would return to “traditional peacekeeping principles” which allowed
Bosnian Serbs to follow their brutal strategy of ethnic cleansing, murder and rape of women.
Therefore, this delay of decision making and the lack of common consensus for the
cooperation between EU countries and the US resulted in giving opportunity to Bosnian Serbs
for following their strategy.
After the Srebrenica massacre, the United States decided to completely leave the policy of
muddling through between the parties in Bosnia. Daalder argues that this strategy was created
because of many mistakes that the US pursed between 1992 and 1995. These mistakes consist
of insisting to bring Bosnian Serbs to the table through the mediation of the Serb President
Slobadan Milosevic which caused the increase of the bargaining power of Serb parties.
Another mistake concerns the refusal to have US troops in the field whereas the European
powers’ overprotection on their troops and their hesitations for preventing their troops
increased the possibility of being taken as hostage by Serb militaries. As final mistakes could
be the UN forces decision for following “traditional peacekeeping principles” and the US’s
decision for lifting the arms embargo in the Bosnia. Overall, US and EU countries’ day to day
crisis mechanism was the biggest mistake during the war. Another crucial point of Daadler is
that the US intervened to Bosnia in 1995 in order to safeguard both of the US and NATO’s
prestige and as well as the election process in the US.
Moreover, the US natioal team of foreign policy produced a strategy of combining force with
diplomacy which is a more effective and long term solution based on strategy. It was
significantly clear that all the US, the EU and contact group of countries and particularly
Britain, France, Germany and Russia were all aware that the only way to bring Bosnian Serbs
into the table was with military pressure. However, European countries insist to share the cost
of military burden with the United States on the ground with the participation of the US
military troops in the war. Daadler also highlights that Lake’s suggestion of removing the
United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) was crucial for the subsequent US
implementation of the military force against Bosnian Serbs. This suggestion was also
approved by Clinton Administration.
Additionally, the United Nations Protection force (UNPROFOR) was also taken into account
by the Clinton administration as an obstacle for the solution in Bosnia. The United Nations
force and its allied European powers’ indecisive attitudes and opposition both towards the air
strikes and lift of the arms embargo on Bosnia government undermined the right of self
defense from the Bosnian side. However, the US State and their defence departments need to
deploy a huge amount of US troops in order to overcome the problems which emerge from
the withdrawal of UNPROFOR forces from Bosnia. The endgame strategy was finally
reached with the leadership of Lake. Therefore, Daadler points that the end game strategy
should consist of three steps; First step is to remove UNPROFOR and replace it with NATO
and US force. Second step is to acknowledge that a diplomatic solution or an agreement can
not be build completely against the gains of Bosnian Serbs; and Third step is to pointing the
importance of utilizing military force against all the internal parties for achieving political
deal in Bosnia (Daalder, 2016). Thus, both Clinton and Lake have agreed that the status quo
in Bosnia is no longer acceptable and the US needs to alter the balance of power between the
Muslim-Croat federation and the Bosnian Serb entity. Therefore, the US and its forces will
implement high costs to both parties ıf they can not reach or reject the agreement. If the
federation side rejects the agreement then the US will impose “lift and leave” policy which
means the lift of the arms embargo and leaving the federation to its own fate. If the Bosnian
Serb entity rejects the agreement then it will confront the air strikes from NATO and US will
assist federation forces for protecting 51 percent of the Bosnian territory.
This endgame strategy with the leadership of the US actually provided the foundation of the
Dayton Agreement in Bosnia for to end the war. Daadler’s illustration of the Dayton
agreement was also significant for Bosnian war. Although this agreement recognizes the
sovereignty and territorial integrity of Bosnia, it also allowed to divide the country into two
entities – the Bosnian Serb identity and the Muslim-Croat federation. However, this agreement
also allows entities to have special relationship with their neighbours such as with Serbia and
Crotia and it even allows them to have secession with a future referendum. Consequently, the
Dayton agreement is too much controversial in its nature thus it emphasizes and prioritizes the
importance of ethnic division and entity voting against the sovereignty and territorial integrity
of Bosnia.
Overall, Ivo.H.Daadler insists that the Clinton administration was decisive to convince its
European allies and Russia for this agreement. However, the US was also determined to
implement this agreement even if it is necessary to go with only its own forces. During 1995,
the US and NATO forces were successfull to alter the balance of power in favaor of the
Bosnian-Croatian federation. Another interesting point that Daadler provides was that
although US and EU learned many lessons from the Bosnia case, these lessons were not
effective in Kosovo due to the lack of willingness from the US on the way to end the conflict
in Kosovo and to impose any military and diplomatic pressure on the parties. Therefore, the
US’s strong vision and determination in Bosnia with Richard Hoolbroke’s extensive
mediation among parties are completely absent in the Kosovo case. Consequently, the US
policy in Kosovo will not be more than muddling through strategy in this regard.
Ivo.H.Daadler’s article is qualitative methodology with also giving examples from
international actors speeches on Bosnian war. Hence, it can be also considered to have a
discourse analysis. However, the article is generally more desciptive and based on the
author’s personal opinion. Hence, Daadler’s article is more based on the explanation and
interpretation of the Bosnian war from the author’s perspective. However, the author focuses
and observes the Bosnian war from a different perspective with different research question.
Mainly, his research questions concern firstly the Clinton Administration’s decision in August
1995 at long last to intervene decisively in Bosnia, secondly Why the summer of 1995 was
different. It is also considered to be a case study since the article focuses on a certain period of
time which is during the summer of 1995 and the details of the US policy making in this time
with the actions of Anthony Lake and Richard Hoolbroke. Daadler’s article is significanlty
well structured in terms of mentioning breaking points during 1995 such as the betrayal of the
Srebrenica massacre, the past mistakes of the US policy before 1995, the disagreements and
the lack of common consensus between European powers, the US on the deployment of
troops and considering the United Nations Protection force as an obstacle for solution.
Finally, the Dayton agreement was also mentioned and explained which is strongly associated
with the endgame strategy of US in 1995.
Daadler emphasizes and fills the research gap of why the United States finally took a
leadership role to end the war in Bosnia. According to Daadler, it also seeks to understand the
details of the Clinton administration’s policy-making process during the summer of 1995
which is less known. Generally, it is argued as many articles have written on the failure of US
and West countries to end the human tragedy in Bosnia. However, this article completely
focuses on the 1995 year and the US dramatic policy making especially after the Srebrenica
There are mainly two types of theoretical framework in Daadler’s article. The first one is
clearly obvious; namely, classical realism and neorealism. The Second one is constructivism
especially during the period of the US’s dramatic policy shift in Bosnia during the summer of
1995. I argue that this constructivism policy occurred due to the human tragedy of Srebrenica
massacre. The result of this massacre seriously affected the international community and the
US and resulted in a more decisive intervention into Bosnia. Classical realism is compatible in
the Bosnian situation and it is also clearly pointed by the author. For example, Lake’s
proposal for changing the status quo with military force in Bosnia is also approved by the
Clinton administration. Hence, Clinton administration clearly aimed to have balance of power
with supporting the federation side (Croat-Muslim) against Bosnian Serbs. As Daadler
demonstrates in his article that balance of power is the core aspect of the classical realism.
Another point for classical realims is that it emphasizes on self-interest and on state power
maximization due to human nature ambitions. This is also the case in Bosnia especially for
Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Croats. Both Serbs and Croats had the intention and aim to divide,
conquer and share Bosnia among each other. Especially, geography and military powers are
crucial factors in the Bosnian war, thus during the negotiation in the Dayton agreement, every
region and land were discussed highly extensively for gaining one piece of land and for more
power. Hence, balance of power, maximizing state’s interests and human nature are all
comptaible aspects in the Bosnian war. Another aspect of classical realism is to point
revisionist states and status quo states. For example, both the United States and Bosnian Serbs
are considered to be revisionist states which desire to alter the balance of power. However,
both Bosnian Croats and Bosnian muslims prefer to have more status quo state in the region.
Neorealism is also convenient in the situation of Bosnia. This is explained because the
Bosnian war proved that the international system is highly anarchical and structural
constraints are proved to be highly effective during the war. For example, United Nations
Protection force failure and other West European countries hesitations or overprotection for
their troops caused to have massacre in Srebrenica. Hence, the lack of clear international
cooperation and solidarity against Bosnian Serbs was a significant structural constraint in this
regard. Due to this anarchical order, the US with its hegemonic role actually intervened into
Bosnia and clearly ended the war because of its determination and power in the system.
Hence, the US created stability in Bosnia which is also compatible with the Hegemonic
Stability Theory. This is exactly what happened in the Bosnian war with US’s hegemonic role
persuasition, coercion and diplomacy. Hence, the US actually deployed “preponderance of
power” towards all internal actors in the Bosnia.
Finally, constructivism is also compatible in the Bosnian war. For example, until the
Srebrenica massacre in 1995, Bosnia faced serious structural constraints such as receiving
help from European countries, the lack of international cooperation among military force in
the United Nations, the lack of political willingness from the US which allowed Bosnian
Serbs to pursue their brutal strategy. Constructivism challenges neorealism’s understanding
that anarchical nature derives from international politics and at state level. However,
constructivism challenges this understanding with the idea that structural constraints actually
are not given in nature but they are the results of construction through social practice. This is
also the case for United States because the US gained significant lessons during the Bosnian
war until the Srebrenica massacre. Hence, norms, ethics and identity are the major factors in
constructivism. After the human tragedy in Srebrenica, the US with its past lessons and
experiences constructed a new decision making policy in Bosnia. This new construction of
reality actually ended the war in Bosnia. Therefore, constructivism insists that it is not the
inevitable consequences of human nature, structural constraints or states that determine reality
rather people construct these realities with their experiences from social and historical gains.
Consequently, this article analyzed the research paper of Ivo H.Daalder “Decision to
Intervene: How the War in Bosnia Ended”. In this respect, the research paper posed the
research question of “Why did United States finally decide to intervene Bosnia and end the
war in the summer of 1995?” The main argument of the author is that the US intervened into
Bosnia in order to end the war due to the human tragedy in Srebrenica massacre. The Clinton
administration, the European governments, NATO and UNPROFOR in overall gained
significant experience to end the war in Bosnia. However, the US’s coercion, persuasion and
diplomacy with decisive reforms and particularly the removal of UNPROFOR to end the war
in the summer of 1995 was significantly effective in Bosnia. The Dayton agreement was a
success in terms of ending the human tragedy and war in Bosnia. Moreover, this constituion
has significant flaws and controversies. Although it supports the soverignty and territorial
integrity of Bosnia, it separates Bosnia into two entites and ten seperate cantons in its
territory. Overall, although the Bosnian war has ended, its heavy consequences especially on
the social and economic life turned to be disastrous for the Bosnian people who nowadays
have to live and struggle for the conflicts that Dayton agreement created

This article is written by Senad Sevdik

Visits: 412

China and the World Economy

The People’s Republic of China is a unitary sovereign state in East Asia ruled by the
Communist Party of China with a one-party regime. It is the world’s most populous country
with approximately 1,400 billion and the second-largest country in terms of land area with 9.6
million km2. When we look at the structure of the country, we see twenty-two states, five
autonomous regions, four directly governed cities, and the special administrative regions of
Hong Kong and Macau. China also claims sovereignty over Taiwan. In this article, we will
talk about China’s place in the world economy.
Up to the Deng Xiaoping term, The People’s Republic of China did not have an open
economy. Considering the year 1977, although it brought a lot of restrictions to the Chinese
people, it became the 30th largest economy, and this situation brought limited freedom and
controlled liberalism with Deng Xiaoping, who came to power in 1978. This was the first step
of openness which can be seen as a critical tool in a strategy for getting development. China
got 2 percent growth after this, and before liberalization, China got just 0.7 percent growth.
Namely, openness provided adding double growth. So, how did openness reveal that
situation? Because openness has four important positive effects: domestic monopolies’ market
power can be limited, opportunities to seek rent are reduced, technologies and organizational
methods are learned, and production scales become large. (Of course, there are disadvantages
which are living destabilizing shocks and getting economic sanctions from trading partners;
but we do not see for China these so much clearly).
With the openness strategy that has been used, there have been changes in the commercial
field. The rate of export materials increased, and the export rate became 14 percent which was
resulted in increasing the income of the export firms in China. This situation was the first
since the 1920s. Also, China got more money, began to manufacture and export to
manufactured goods, such as clothes, toys, machines. In line with all these results, China has
shown very rapid development. Looking at China’s trade with the USA in 1998, while the
USA had a trade deficit, China had a surplus. In addition to all these, China became the 4th
the country in world trade in 2009.
The worldwide financial panic experienced in 1997-1998 did not affect China much due to
its closed economy yet; However, as the measures to be taken in the transition to an open
economy were not paid attention to, some problems arose later. Foreign investors
concentrated in the south of China have also preferred Taiwan, Hong Kong (the former

British colony can be seen as a financial center), and Singapore. While the people living in the
south earned the negative effect in the factories opened as a result of the investments, the
people living in the north made a living from agriculture, which led to in-country migration
after income inequality. There have been many developments in technology and business
management as a positive effect on foreign investment.
China joined the World Trade Organization, which was established in 1995, in 2001. With
this participation, foreign investors’ access to China’s market would be easier and more
secure, and China would make it easier for foreigners to find a business environment, and
reduce customs taxes. Although these things may seem like a burden for China, they actually
contributed to China’s income at first. Because with the formation of the free market, growth
and prosperity have been realized in the economy. The only problematic situation is the
increase in the unemployment rate after the privatization reforms were postponed. However,
these were easily overcome and China is now the second-largest economy in the world.
Today, China is very advanced in technological terms both in civilian and military are.
Because China provides a contribution to its engineers with opening institutes.
Consequently, when we look at the history of the state, which was named the People’s
The Republic of China in 1948, the increase in the country’s earnings with the open economy and
foreign investment can be seen quite clearly. In addition, we see with the example of Hong
Kong that there are certain criteria in the selection of the cities where investment is made.
This region, which was a financial center during the British colonization, was also chosen by
the People’s Republic of China. In addition to these, China, which joined the World Trade
Organization in 2001, has had a lot of duties (reducing customs tax, supporting foreign
investors, etc.) and as a result, it got very good results. Today, it is the second-largest
the economy in the world and is highly developed technologically.

This article is written by Buse Bakkaloğlu

Visits: 263

The Ottoman sultan who changed America

Today, coffee has become an indispensable beverage that most people consume every
day. Due to the fast pace of life and the increase in working hours, most people have made a
habit of coffee to keep their body vigorous. In this way, many coffee chains were opened,
such as Starbucks and spread all over the world. Since many American-based coffee chains
spread around the world, it may not be known where the basis of coffee comes from.
History professor Alan Mikhail explained the relationship between America, spread of
Protestantism and the Ottoman Empire, also he explained that the origin story of coffee which
have an important place in our lives, actually spread to the world thanks to the Ottoman
Nowadays, the Ottoman Empire does not draw attention from the eyes of Europeans
and Americans historically, it is not known that the Ottoman state was a powerful and a great
state that influenced the history of many countries. Stating that this is wrong, Mikhail states
that even the discovery of America depended on the Ottoman state's domination of trade
routes at that time.
The most important period that increased the influence of the Ottoman Empire among
many countries is the period of Selim III. The reason for this is that Selim proved his
sovereignty by defeating the Mamluk Empire and expanded Ottoman territory. With the
important victories of Selim, the Ottoman Empire also had trade networks and large ports.
Because of the empire strengthening both economically and as a land, Islam got ahead of
Christianity in this period and spread rapidly.
The empowerment of the Ottomans was not the only reason for the weakening of
Christianity. The corruption of Christians in themselves and the use of rulers ‘religion’ as a
means of deceiving people drew the public reaction and the Protestant movement started
under the leadership of Marthin Luther. The Protestant movement spread to the world as
Catholics could not stop the spread of Islam and started to collapse. In other words, an
important reason for the spread of Protestantism was the rise of the Ottomans and Islam.
If we talk about the relationship between the coffee we mentioned at the beginning and
the Ottoman Empire, we can say that the Ottomans discovered coffee from Yemen and found
its use. Until the 18th century, coffee was an important economic resource for the Ottoman

Empire. In other words, the origin of coffee, which is consumed in large amounts all over the
world today, is based on the Ottoman Empire.
Selim's effect on America was realized as the Ottoman rule expanded from the
Atlantic to North America. Taking over Cairo and Jerusalem, the Ottoman Empire prevented
Europe's trade relations with China and India. In this way, the Ottoman Empire became a
leader both in terms of economically and territory.
As a result, the Ottoman Empire was an important power with high dominance in the
world until the First World War. Therefore, it is possible to see the Ottoman influence in the
history of many countries, although it is not noticeable today. Also we can say that most of
these effects occurred as a result of the successes of the Selim III.

This article is written by Esma Kaya.

Visits: 168

State and Government in Ibn Khaldun’s Thought

Ibn Khaldun is the North African thinker and statesman who lived in the 14th century and
laid the foundations of historiosophy, sociology and economics. Even though the term
“sociology” is firstly used by the 19th century thinker Auguste Comte -who is accepted as the
founder of sociology by Western sources-, Ibn Khaldun has initiated sociology studies five
hundred years before Comte. He wasn’t aware of the science he initiated at the time, but after
centuries, today his works are considered under the frame of sociology literature.
Ibn Khaldun suggests that social, economic and political transformations include certain
patterns and they proceed in an order. He uses a science he named “umran” to explai his
suggestion. Umran deals with the reasons that necessitate to live together for, in other words
a community life, taking social life and organization of people in its center. According to
Khaldun, there are two reasons that motivate people to live together. First one is the need for
nourishment, which requires cooperation and solidarity. Second one is the need for defence
and protection, which requires sticking together.
The lexical meaning of Umran is to progress and improve. It has two forms: umran badawi
and umran hadhari. Badawi umran means nomadian and it refers to the most primitive
lifestyle. In this form, far from sciences; artisanship such as carpentry, forging, bakery didn’t
exist and even if they did, they existed as silhouettes. The need of cooperation and solidarity
necessitates a social life in badawi umran. The form, quality and quantity of this social
cooperation is expressed with the term “asabiyah”, which is considered as kindredship in
badawi umran. Badawi umran proceeds to hadhari umran. The main future of the transition
from badawi umran to hadhari umran is the increase of the production volume in badawi
umran. At this stage, another factor arises that oblige people to socialize and this factor is the
sovereign power that protects people and their excessive goods against each other and
regulates their relations. When it comes to the level of hadhari umran, it becomes overly
complex to be defined in terms of kindredship. However, since people continue to live
together, asabiyah haven’t disappeared yet but only gained a new meaning. For this form of
umran, in which complex city economies exist with industry and technology; fine arts,
elegant artisanship and science can find place state and asabiyah are indispensable.
According to Ibn Khaldun, umran shares the life of state in space and time. It improves when
state improves, it peaks when state peaks and it disappears when state disappears. Khaldun
suggests that, in the process which leads to states there is a relation between the form of
asabiyah and the shape the state will take. To explain this relation, there are five phases of the
state’s organizational development, from the perspective of the state as a political
1- Victory and Invasion: It’s the foundation stage of state or dynasty. It includes seizing the
power from its previous owner and founding the state/dynasty, by suppressing every sort of
resistance. Sovereign hasn’t separated parties that are involved in the foundation process and

the society, yet. Thus, parties who are closer to sovereign become a part of administration and
this indicates that the dynamism of asabiyah is at the highest level.
2- Domination: It’s the stage where the sovereign seeks to guarantee its domination over the
society and tends to centralize his power. The sovereign desires to cast the notables -who had
become a part of the administration- aside. Nevertheless, he wants to keep them loyal. He
achieves this by paying salary through civilian and military bureaucracies. However, casting
the parties aside, who he had been sharing the same asabiyah, would lead to dissolution of the
asabiyah and his own end.
3- Prosperity: This is the stage of wealth and comfort. At this period, the sovereign
completely hegemonized both his own group and the outsiders of his group. Now he has a
wide tax base and a well-functioning financial order, an effective civilian bureaucracy which
is responsible for enforcing his orders everywhere and a well-trained strong army. He makes
an effort to increase his personal wealth and financial resources of the state, urban
beautification and cultural development. All national subjects of the state benefit from this
economic prosperity.
4- Peace: In this stage development of the state stops. Sovereign is confined with what his
ancestors left. It’s the phase where the structure of the state becomes traditional and its
rationalist elements disappear. Additionally, a tendency of resistance for change exists and
the sovereign rarely answers external threats and developments.
5- Extravagance: The sovereign spends all the wealth his ancestors left prodigally for
pleasure. Thus, he demolishes the institutional structure of the states his ancestors established
and he causes dismemberment of the state. The group who holds the authority changes, the
sovereign changes and the asabiyah dissolves. The state can survive only if a dynasty shift
within the country occurs.
According to Ibn Khaldun, the most critical phase is the transition from prosperity stage to
peace stage when all the stages that the institutional structure of the state goes through are
considered. Since the cultural development of the society continues but a production
mechanism and economic structure to support this cultural development don’t exist, the trust
for the government weakens. Even if the society holds its cultural expectations back for a
while, a feeling of resentment appears after sometime because humans are cultural beings.
“Humans are the children of their habits, not their fathers.” with Khaldun’s words.
Consequently, just as all living beings that are born, grow, develop, age and die; according to
Ibn Khaldun, every social organization is alive in this context and they are established,
develop, age, dissolve and die.
This article is written by Merve Ilgaz and Beyza Kumanova

Visits: 252

SUN TZU – ART of WAR – Book Review


Art of War written by Sun Tzu 2500 years ago in China. Taoism has influenced it
significantly. Ideas in Art of War not only helped war situations also it helped today’s
businesspeople. Japan’s modernization process used ideas in the book. These examples show
that Art of War is a classic which is not only about war but almost all human relations.

I am going to analyze the book chapter by chapter because every chapter has ties inside it.

I. Laying Plans: In this chapter Sun Tzu explains how war making, civil life and
political life connected each other. How effective making plans and preparations on
result of a war. (1) The Moral Law; (2) Heaven; (3) Earth; (4) The Commander; (5)
Method and discipline. These elements govern to conditions of war. Sun Tzu gives
some questions for commander to answer. Answers of these questions will show
current situation of army.
II. Waging War: This part says that making war has a significant cost for a state so
before starting a war making plans on logistics, taxes and preparing budged is
necessary. Making points to finish war in a short time is crucial. Otherwise, war will
be far costlier than the aim. Additionally, loots during war will help to reduce cost of
war of yours and increase the opponents.
III. Attack by Stratagem: Sun says There are three type of generalship. “supreme
excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting.” This part of
the book is one of the popular one. Winning wars without fighting is the highest form
of generalship. Additionally, Sun Tzu says that army moral, officer’s quality and
discipline are strongly affects an army’s power.
IV. Tactical Dispositions: After giving strategical advices Sun Tzu gives general tactical
advices in this part. Avoiding from a defeat is the first step for a general. Later a
general should seek mistakes of the enemy for winning a war he says.

V. Energy: Shun Tzu defines energy as a preparation of tactics. After creating energy
commander will release this energy upon enemy. He gives this comparison to better
understanding “Energy may be likened to the bending of a crossbow, decision, to the
releasing of a trigger.”.
VI. Weak Points and Strong: Subtlety and secrecy defined as divine things by Sun Tzu.
To “hold enemy’s fate in our hands” those two are key abilities for a commander.
VII. Maneuvering: knowledge about enemy and geography are most important
information to create tactics.
VIII. Variation in Tactics: This part advises are generally focused on Commander. Sun
Tzu says that commander should take initiative for victory. Sometimes orders from
superiors should not be followed to achieve victory. The burden he puts on
commanders’ shoulders are very high. He says that a commander should change his
personal traits. He lists some bad traits for a commander; recklessness, cowardice, a
hasty temper, a delicacy of honor, over-solicitude for his men.
IX. The Army on the March: This part gives tips to commander about marching stance.
Where and when to engage enemy, how to use geography, understanding behaviors
of enemy soldiers, uncovering traps, and lastly reading your own soldier’s behaviors
to understand their needs.
X. Terrain: Terrain part’s one half is about terrain features other is about general’s
responsibilities. In first half Sun Tzu says that there are six types of terrain which are
named natural ones: “(1) Accessible ground; (2) entangling ground; (3) temporizing
ground; (4) narrow passes; (5) precipitous heights; (6) positions at a great distance
from the enemy.”. For Sun Tzu, these different types of terrains require different
tactics and movements. Second half is about commander’s failures. He points these
failures so a commander can avoid them. (1) Flight; (2) insubordination; (3) collapse;
(4) ruin; (5) disorganization; (6) rout. These failures are all about army management,
discipline, sustaining authority and merit.
XI. The Nine Situations: These nine situations classified by enemy and ally lands. (1)
Dispersive ground; (2) facile ground; (3) contentious ground; (4) open ground; (5)
ground of intersecting highways; (6) serious ground; (7) difficult ground; (8)
hemmed-in ground; (9) desperate ground. The most detailed part of the book is this
part. Sun Tzu gives detailed information about features of these nine situations.
Also, some tips to avoid from defeat and winning a war.

XII. The Attack by Fire: Fire is one of the common war technologies at Shun Tzu’s time.
He gives technical and tactical information about fire usage in war. He explains
suitable conditions to use fire in a war by weather conditions, astrology, and seasons.
Then he connects the topic to anger control’s importance for a commander.
XIII. The Uses of Spies: gathering a country’s all power into an aim is significantly costly
for every element of it. So, usage of conspiracy is crucial to lead such power to a
victory. Sun Tzu categorizes spies into five classes. (1) Local spies; (2) inward spies;
(3) converted spies; (4) doomed spies; (5) surviving spies. These spy categories are
for where to use them how much resource to give them.

This article written by Ozan Anıl Özmercan

Visits: 162

Turkey and Libyan Crisis

Two Main Rival Factions

Like most of the Arab nations in Arab Spring of 2011, protests also broke out in Libya, a geopolitically important state in the international arena because of its richest oil reserves in the North Africa. Eventually these protests led to a civil war and the death of the leader, Muammar Gaddafi by NATO airstrikes but it was not the end. After the death Muammar Gaddafi, violence escalated again and the second civil war erupted in 2014 because of the proliferation of armed groups in the country. The second civil war is mainly among two rival factions; Marshal Khalifa Haftar who was appointed by the parliament of Libya, House of Representatives in 2014 with only an 18% turnout and relocated to Tobruk and the Prime Minister Fayez Al-Sarraj, the leader of Government of National Accord based in Tripoli, the capital of Libya which officially recognized by the UN as Libya’s legitimate government. In addition, both of the factions have foreign supports like; Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and France support the House of Representatives and the United Nations, Western powers including the United States but mainly Turkey, Qatar and Italy support the Government of National Accord. On the other hand, these instabilities resulted in the collapse of the state’s economy and oil industry.

Turkey and Second Civil War of Libya

Foreign powers intervened in Libyan civil war because of their strategies and economic concerns and interests and flooded this country with weapons and drones in spite of UN arms embargo. Turkey, as a foreign power in this conflict has also its own ideological and political reasons to support the Government of National Accord to increase its political and economic dominance in the region. One of the main ideological reasons is that this faction is related to the Muslim Brotherhood because in the past Turkey reportedly supported a Libyan Islamist group named the Justice and Construction Party with close ties to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, to gain a foothold in the GNA which opposes a threat to other Arab countries such as Egypt and UAE. In addition, as Mediterranean Sea is geopolitically important for the regional states, by signing a Maritime Boundary Treaty with GNA, Turkey established an exclusive economic zone in Mediterranean Sea which enables this country to claim rights to ocean bed resources which contain vast gas reserves. According to the Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Çavuşoğlu in an interview with local broadcaster 24 TV, Turkey signed this agreement to preserve the rights of Turkish Cypriots and to protect its interests in the continental shelf, while the legitimacy of this agreement have been disputed by a number of states including European Union, Cyprus, Egypt and Greece because it does not comply with the Law of the Sea and it violates the rights of third states.

Unfortunately, in spite of several diplomatic meetings and agreements on cease fire and truce among the two rival factions of the Libyan conflict and the foreign powers, the conflict has not been de-escalated enough.

This article written by Aida Farrokhpour

Visits: 70


Libya, which cannot be shared and important country in the world due to oil reserves, is a
major part of the agenda today with the constant change of balances in the region. In Libya,
which is in the 8th place in the world in terms of oil reserves, an authority gap occurred after
the overthrow of Gaddafi. On one side of the The Tripoli-based Government of National
Accord (GNA) which supported by the Government of Turkey and the United Nations, the
other side’s  Libyan National Army (LNA) which is supported by Russia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia
and France. Both sides want to be active in the region in order to dominate Libya and get a
share of the reserves. However, they can also gain their interests in Syria. The changes in the
balance situation in the region were as follows; In 2018, Russia tried to gain the upper hand
with Wagner, a private company, sending military and weaponry aid to the region. In this
process, the treaty proposals from the National Consensus Government were rejected.
Later,Turkey sent troops to Libya, with the agreement made between the Government of
National Reconciliation with Turkey. At the same time, the military training and equipment
support provided by the Turkish armed forces ensured the protection and strengthening of the
Tripoli region. The Libyan National Army’s inability to dominate the Tripoli region caused
the ropes to stretch within itself and was interpreted as changing balances in the international
community. Secondly, actors who did not want to get involved in the chaos in the region had
to determine their sides and wishes with this unexpected move. Thirdly, Saudi Arabia and the
United Arab Emirates provided financial support and gained earning from the region. This
situation and their inability to dominate the region caused them to have a dispute among
themselves, especially with Russia.
All in all, competition environment and confusion have increased due to the rapid changes in
balances and the increase of actors who want to be effective in the region. It seems that the
Libya issue will continue to be discussed internationally and an agreement will be reached.
We will be able to see whether this will be successful or not with future events.

source: Nihat Ali Özcan- Milliyet

This article written by Esma Kaya

Visits: 271

French Elections 2020

This article written by Yasemin Erge


The 2020 French municipal elections were held from 15 March to 28 June. The
election system of France consists of two rounds. Local elections held a few days ago
surprised France. French president Macron was defeated. In 2015, local elections were held
last. With the elections held this year, we see that the right-left balance in France is changing
In these elections of France, the greens left their mark on the left. Greens won mayors
in important cities such as Lyon, Strasbourg, Bordeaux, Tours, Poitiers, Besançon in alliance
with the left. In Paris, socialist candidate Anne Hidalgo became the president again by taking
50 percent of the votes in alliance with the Greens. Greens, who could not participate in the
second round by getting 6% votes in 2015, won the second round by winning 13.5% in 2020
and won in many leading cities. We see that the alliance between parties increased in 2020. In
the second largest city of France, Marseille also called the ”spring of Marseille” alliance, and
many years later the city took the majority from the right.
In general, while the voting rate of the right parties decreased, the left parties were
prepared very well for the elections. As a result of these elections, the Greens took the flag of
innovation in the hands of President Macron. They had the right to undress the leadership of
the opposition. In the upcoming presidential elections, it is envisaged that a large part of the
left will participate in the elections by standing behind the candidate of the Greens from the
first round.
Macron’ party ‘’En Marche!’’ It was founded in 2016 and did not participate in the
2015 elections. However, he was elected by putting his candidacy for presidency in 2017.
Pratisi is located in the center. Macron, who made warnings for the far right in the previous
elections, was the left threat in these elections.
Uncomfortable with the extreme left’s strengthening, Macron decided to prepare better
for the presidential elections to be held 2 years later. Prime Minister Edouard Philippe, whose
government has been in office for three years, and his cabinet resigned. They cited Edouard
Philippe’s election as the mayor of Le Havre for this reason. Jean Castex was appointed as the
new prime minister.
Macron’s change of prime minister shows that he will be a candidate again in the
elections after 2 years and does not want him to set an obstacle in front of the rising left.
Because after 2 years, if the votes continue increasingly, Macron will say goodbye to the

Visits: 142