Independent and cutting-edge analysis on Turkey and its neighborhood

From the Desk of the Editor

From the Desk of the Editor

This issue of TPQ takes stock of important geopolitical shifts in the Eastern Mediterranean region, from the exploitation of newly discovered energy resources and emerging regional alliances to conflict resolution efforts and migration flows. While parsing the short and longer-term implications of the deteriorating security environment in the region, our authors indicate that there are also opportunities for cooperation.

Süreya Martha Köprülü | 27 June 2016

Emerging Security Challenges in NATO’s South: How Can the Alliance Respond?

Emerging Security Challenges in NATO’s South: How Can the Alliance Respond?

Given the complexity and diversity of the security environment in NATO’s South, the Alliance must adopt a multi-dimensional approach that seeks to project stability through a range of different tools. Among them that the author highlights are the strengthening of NATO’s military means of defense; advising and assisting local forces in the region; deepening its cooperation with regional partners and international organizations; and enhancing its strategic awareness on energy, cyber,...

Sorin Ducaru | 27 June 2016

The Eastern Mediterranean Vortex

The Eastern Mediterranean Vortex

The Eastern Mediterranean region has moved to the very center of global security concerns. Open- ended conflict in Syria, a fragmented Libya, and threats to the stability of Egypt and other pivotal states underscore the fragility of the region. Refugee flows and the foreign fighter phenomenon are at the top of the European security agenda, alongside deepening friction with Russia – a competition that has acquired a significant Mediterranean dimension.  In this article, the author...

Ian O. Lesser | 28 June 2016

Turkey’s Loaded Discussion on System Change: Presidentialism vs. Parliamentarism

Turkey’s Loaded Discussion on System Change: Presidentialism vs. Parliamentarism

Turkey is currently embroiled in a heated domestic debate about transitioning from a parliamentary system to a presidential system.There are deep divisions among both Turkey’s political class and different segments of society about the proposed political system and constitutional change. In this article, the author lays out the reasons behind the AK Party’s push for establishing an executive presidency, the opposition parties’ positions vis-a-vis this change, and the different...

Birol Akgün | 27 June 2016

The Reinvention of Jihadism in the Middle East

The Reinvention of Jihadism in the Middle East

The emergence of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has reshaped the global jihadist landscape in ways that have spawned questions about the future terrorist environment. In parsing the evolution of jihadism since Al Qaeda’s apex, the author argues that the movement self-destructed due to a number of compounding dynamics: less foreign volunteers interested in the cause, a smaller “audience,” the shift from global to local enemies, and the fast turnover of leaders....

Peter Harling | 28 June 2016

Cyprus Settlement Negotiations: From Euphoria to Reality

Cyprus Settlement Negotiations: From Euphoria to Reality

Arguably, negotiations for a settlement of the Cyprus issue are currently in their most critical and advanced phase in their history, prompting euphoria. Considerable progress has been achieved, but serious thorns and obstacles remain. At the same time, the prospects of a solution of the Cyprus issue are inextricably linked to regional and international developments, including strategic alignments and alliances, economic realities, political developments and energy issues. This article comprises...

Harry Tzimitras & Ayla Gürel | 28 June 2016

Pivoting Energy Relations in the Eastern Mediterranean

Pivoting Energy Relations in the Eastern Mediterranean

Italian energy firm Eni’s discovery of the Zohr natural gas field in Egypt in late 2015 may prove a boon to Turkey’s long-term goal of serving as an energy transit country. If the Egyptian market is saturated, Israel and Cyprus will be unable to export the majority of gas from the Leviathan and Aphrodite fields there, leaving Turkey as the most economical transport option for exports to Europe. The prospect of a pipeline offers added impetus to settle long-standing conflicts between...

Suzanne Carlson | 27 June 2016

The Case of the Chemicals Industry & the Modern Industrial Economy

The Case of the Chemicals Industry & the Modern Industrial Economy

The chemicals industry is indispensable to the modern industrial economy. However, the solutions it provides for global challenges and the investment and jobs it supports, can only be guaranteed if the industry is able to compete on a global basis. This article considers what pro-competitiveness policies can look like in a modern Turkish and European industrial economy, touching on energy, better regulation, trade and innovation, and the crucial role of training and development opportunities for...

Howard Chase | 27 June 2016

Turkey Needs a New Social Contract

Turkey Needs a New Social Contract

Turkey needs a new social contract to reverse economic slowdown, social polarization, internecine violence, and diplomatic isolation. The insistence on a presidential system, and the consequent failure of cross-party panels in 2013 and 2016 to draft a new constitution, however, have eroded enthusiasm for any further attempts. In this article, the author argues that Turkey could still make progress with the Constitution if it replaces its current fixation with the wholesale drafting of a new...

Aykan Erdemir | 27 June 2016

Changing Military Balances in the Eastern Mediterranean: Implications for Turkey

Changing Military Balances in the Eastern Mediterranean: Implications for Turkey

This paper is aimed at providing an assesement of the growing Russian naval strength and assertiveness in the Eastern Mediterranean, and its implications for Turkey’s place in the regional naval power hierarchy after Moscow’s direct involvement in the Syrian conflict in 2015. Although the main focus is on the Eastern Mediterranean, the region obviously cannot be decoupled from the Black Sea and to some extent from the Aegean. Therefore, this paper argues that the naval power...

Serhat Güvenç & Sıtkı Egeli | 27 June 2016

Cyber Power in the Changing Middle East

Cyber Power in the Changing Middle East

The turmoil that characterized the ruins of the century-old colonial Sykes-Picot order undermined the security environment for Ankara and Jerusalem alike. The geopolitical great power conflict will unfold turbulently in what was Syria and Iraq. Concurrently, cyber technology provides actors with new tools to achieve the desired effect and gain power. Israel has allegedly utilized original cyber power for strategic purposes in Syria and Iran. Russia, now entrenched in Syria, has created cyber...

Lior Tabansky | 28 June 2016

Issues in Turkey’s Post-Soviet Policy

Issues in Turkey’s Post-Soviet Policy

Turkey may feel comfortable in its position of regional power. However, this rise requires that Ankara direct its attention to the post-Soviet area. Traditional rivalry with Russia and normalization of relations in the Caucasus region will present the most important obstacles for engagement with post-Soviet nations. This all comes at a time of significant change in regional dynamics, affecting neighboring states and their regional strategies. In order to reach out to the post-Soviet space,...

David Erkomaishvili | 27 June 2016

Tackling the Syrian Refugee Crisis: Prospects & Challenges

Tackling the Syrian Refugee Crisis: Prospects & Challenges

The Co-Opinion Network organized a thematic workshop titled “Regional Development, Refugee Crisis, and Youth Unemployment” between 27-28 February 2016 at Hasan Kalyoncu University, Gaziantep. The workshop brought together representatives of distinguished civil society organizations, academic institutes, and international institutions. This article draws on the proceedings of this workshop, and discusses policy reforms necessary for the socioeconomic integration of Syrian refugees,...

Erhan Arslan, Semuhi Sinanoğlu & Irmak Taner | 28 June 2016

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FROM THE DESK OF THE EDITOR
From The Desk Of The Editor This issue of TPQ comes at a time when global instability is arguably at its highest point since the end of World War II. The Western-led liberal world order that emerged in its wake, anchored by NATO and bolstered by multilateral institutions such as the European Union and the World Bank is fraying, and the principles upon which the order was founded are being undermined. Furthermore, the...
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