Sunday, July 31, 2016

Turkey under Erdogan wants to be recognized and treated as a new regional power with a say in the reformatting of Euroasia. This requires a new order and a more disciplined Turkey for which the flirting with the EU is over

George Friedman (STRATFOR) also sees Erdogan's anti-coup as the shift of Turkey to a status of regional power, which, as such, will try to reassert its greater independence. He also sees (I agree) this as the result of Turkey's internal development.
Russia in this regard is not getting any stronger (for example vis-a-vis the US), but continues on the path of its deepening social, economic and moral crisis. Moreover, since the 1990s Russia has been a dutifully tributes/reparations paying colonized mafia state. As such, not only Russia ditched or sold out nearly all her allies and did so much for nothing (except for the temporary license given to the mafia/KGB oligarchs to rip off and plunder their own country), but, as a sinking hole, Putin's Russia as a colony can't build any proper, solid relations either.
Turkey as a more independent and assertive regional power will undoubtedly be one of the serious suitors for the post-Soviet heritage of Central Asia and the Caucasus (and not only there) to be divided among the new claimants--the US, China, Turkey.
In doing so, Erdogan's Turkey will try to reset or renegotiate the key basic principles of its relationship and partnership with the US. Perhaps more akin to what Israel has with the US--as an "indispensable" player and power for the one "indispensable" nation on earth.
The challenge for Erdogan is to foster and maintain a new form of assertive nationalism (based much on something similar to US realism) in the age of globalization (global elite ruling the world). It is the type of nationalism which Putin and his clique have occasionally been hinting upon or faking in all their impotence, hollowness and insincerity.
One of the most critical challenges to Erdogan's Turkey is how to maintain the economic dynamo of its country and how to contain or redirect the Kurdish wrath.
This and Brexit thus presents the (re)emergence and formation of three regional powers--Germany, Turkey, and Great Britain. In the meantime, with the great help from the Putinist clique, the West succeeded in pitting essentially two Russian armies against each other in Donbass and so far the West has also been able to skillfully keep control over the valves of this conflict and the amount of Russian deaths at the hands of the Russians and Russian blood flowing through the new Russian-Ukrainian pipeline in this new war of Rome against Carthage.

GEORGE FRIEDMAN: Turkey's failed coup puts it on the path to becoming a major world power

In my book The Next 100 Years, I argued that Turkey is going to become a major regional power. Recent events would seem at odds with this view. But in fact, they confirm it.
Emerging as a regional power puts great pressure on a nation. The shift in external reality causes internal shifts as well. This is what we see in Turkey: a clash between rival factions with diverse visions, a coup of some sort, and for now, a dictatorship.
Increased global power flows from greater domestic strength. But it also feeds back into the internal system. This creates strain on social and political fault lines.
We see examples of this throughout history.

How the US and Japan emerged as global powers

The Mexican-American War turned the US into the leading regional power in North America. The war also spurred the early stages of industrialization. Railroads, the telegraph, and various forms of hydrocarbon-powered factories began to change the nature of commerce.
The North evolved its economic and social systems. But, the South wanted to retain its plantation-based economy and social system. This split led to the Civil War.
Some thought the Civil War would end the regional power status of the US. But this view was wrong. From 1865 onward, the US grew its economic and global power.
Although tragic, the Civil War did not change the course of the US. Instead, it cleared the decks and created a new power structure to deal with the new realities of a mechanized society. The ascent of the US, to that of a regional power dominating a continent, ripped the social fabric and led to war.
Also consider Japan’s journey to become a major power as it industrialized in the late 19th century. After Japan defeated Russia, its economy evolved quickly while the social structure stayed fairly static. That led to tensions between the liberally minded business class and the socially conservative military.
Japan experienced instability in this new role as a regional and economic power. Military dictatorship soon followed.
Turkey also had to start managing its regional power. The first step would be to redefine its relationship with the US. The military was pro-American, while Erdoğan was not eager to engage in America’s regional agendas.
These external pressures and internal social change created an unstable situation. Turkey was a volatile mix of political ingredients that was destined to explode.
There was no civil war, at least not yet, and the military was unable to impose a dictatorship. But the new realities had to be dealt with.
Many have asked whether the coup attempt was real or staged by Erdoğan. It’s an interesting question. Either way, the fact is that a dictatorship has emerged and imposed a state of emergency.
Erdoğan is conducting a massive purge of opponents. The focus, though, has been on the military. Turkish society is being transformed.

The state that Atatürk created can no longer exist. The pro-European secularism of the 1920s has weakened.
The economic boom introduced new players to what was a closed circle of elites. The military can no longer function as overseer of Turkish politics. Those days are at an end, but they will not end quietly. Erdoğan is now trying to bury the past.
But this should not be understood as the failure of Turkey as a society, nor as rendering Turkey incapable of being a regional power. These events will strengthen Turkey’s ability to act regionally, based on its interests.

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