Ever since the Iraq War disrupted the regional balance of power, a fundamentally new geopolitical reality has been emerging in the Middle East. As the U.S. winds down its military presence in Iraq, it must confront this new reality, and decide what kind of grand strategy it will henceforth apply to the region. In this respect, the most promising development it can seize upon is the rapidly emerging role of Turkey as a leading regional political, economic and diplomatic power. As with any rising power, this process will generate occasional tensions with the United States, as seen recently over Iranian nuclear sanctions and the Israeli flotilla incident. But the United States should not lose sight of the overwhelming long-term advantages of Turkey’s greater prominence in the Middle East, which is likely to facilitate integration with the global economy, support peaceful modes of conflict resolution and encourage accommodation between Islamic and Western liberal political norms.