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Comments | For Biden and NATO Turkey is an agonizing subject.

Joe from Scranton will give “C’mon man! No Malarkey!” Cure? That would warm the hearts of legislators. Policy experts, journalists, human rights activists and dissenters But maybe not so much, although Biden personally read Erdogan about the act of rioting. Despite the acclaim of 1 pound of turkey meat in Washington these days. But who expected fireworks at the meeting? Biden-Erdogan is often disappointed. Biden can’t do much about Turkey’s geopolitical dilemma. And he is unlikely to accept the tension. at least in public Because he focused on repairing transatlantic relations and showing solidarity with allies. Ankara will remain a NATO ally on paper. but has long ceased to be a partnership And that won̵

7;t change anytime soon.

Turkey’s advantage within NATO has always been its location. Close to Russia, the Middle East and the Balkans. The country is an indispensable asset in NATO’s southeastern wing. This has always given Ankara the freedom to pursue policies that are inconsistent with NATO, whether it’s four successful military dictatorships between 1960 and 1997. or the occupation of northern Cyprus that began in 1974 and continues to this day . In recent years Erdogan, who regarded Turkey as a superpower in its own right, has tested the limits of Ankara’s privileged position

Biden is unlikely to take Erdogan to work in front of the camera in Brussels, though. But his administration has responded to the list of irritants on the US-Turkey agenda, visibly changing the tone of bilateral relations. The State Department has taken unusually hard action. It has been reported (by oral standards) about the Turkish government’s use of riot police on student protesters and the investigation by Turkish businessmen and American academics who are groundlessly accused of plotting a failed July 2016 coup. The White House issued a statement when Turkey withdrew from a transnational agreement in 2011 to combat domestic violence against women. which the Turkish president’s office has claimed to be a “hijack”[ed] by groups trying to normalize homosexuality.”

And of course, there was awareness of the Armenian genocide. It was something Armenian-American activists had hoped to see from President Barack Obama, but he took a stance for fear of upsetting his key American ally. A lot has changed since then.

Other differences Long-standing conflicts between the alliance include the fight against Islamic State (IS) in Syria, where the United States relies on fighting Kurdish forces that Turkey sees as a terrorist organization. the presence of Fethullah Gulen, Erdogan’s archenemy in the United States; and Turkish security agents who defeated American citizens who protested Erdogan in May 2017.

My poor understanding of the Atlantic coast is that Ankara has proved a huge headache for NATO. This is because they often have mild relationships with other alliance members. Turkey has caused a crisis with Greece and France, NATO’s ally, to shorten the story. Turkey has pulled a maritime border with Libya, which has no legal basis and cut the Mediterranean in half. In addition to being dangerously close to the Greek island of Crete. (which may have important undersea gas resources) France, which considers itself a Mediterranean power. except for the Turkish movement. as well as the Greeks for obvious reasons at the same time Turkey is searching for gas in the waters of the Republic of Cyprus. It is a member of the European Union but not of NATO, resulting in a show of Greek and French military support for the island.

No shots were fired. But that’s hardly earned. Beyond the Mediterranean last year Turkey has also threatened to send Syrians and other refugees to Greece, other European countries and NATO.

In a sense, all of these contractions were a rational response to what the Turkish leader saw as an effort by Greece. (and allies of Egypt, Cyprus and Israel) in the integration of Turkey into a small part. of the Mediterranean Even though it’s 995 miles, the coastline with its source of water on the other hand Turkey is showing its own geopolitical interests separate from NATO interests, a fact the allies have yet to dispute. But can’t do much.

and then there is Russia Turkey and Russia have strengthened trade, diplomatic and military ties in recent years. But this relationship is not as straightforward as it is commonly believed.

The most important indication of Turkey’s uncertainty over NATO is Erdogan’s willingness to purchase and deploy the Russian S-400 air defense system, the most complex in Moscow’s arsenal. from the US objection and European partners Despite America’s repeated warnings Turkey’s removal from the F-35 joint attack fighter program and outrageous sanctions from Congress Turkey is also through such transactions.

For some observers, the S-400 saga clearly shows that Ankara corresponds to Moscow. in the same way a few weeks ago An angry European diplomat leaked to the Turkish media in a NATO speech condemning the hijacking of Ryanair in Belarus for the arrest of dissident journalists. Europeans have implied that Turkey wants to take a softer stance on Belarus because of Erdogan’s desire to condemn Russian President Vladimir Putin.

But Ankara’s critics in Europe and the United States have often overlooked that the Turkish and Russian governments stand in opposition to every major conflict in the region involved, including Syria, Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh and Ukraine. Why did the Turkish government buy the S-400 and why Erdogan and Putin worked so hard to differentiate them?

The answer can be seen in a statement by Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu before the first S-400 components reach an airbase outside Ankara. The insidious minister declared that it was Turkey’s “Independence Day” is independence from NATO and the United States. Turkish patriots such as Erdogan and Soylu detest what they see as NATO’s long-term efforts to make Ankara the only part of an alliance that is expected to pursue the interests and goals of other countries in On the other hand, the leaders in Ankara regard Turkey on par with major European powers. They also regard their country as a Mediterranean superpower. Eurasian superpower and the power of Muslims

In this context, Turkey’s relationship with Russia is somewhat different in color. Cooperation between Erdogan and Russia in some areas is not a sign that he is a supporter of Putin. as well as other anti-Russian issues. It didn’t make Ankara the anti-Moscow fortress that the NATO allies wanted it to be. But Erdogan’s double-edged approach underscores Ankara’s determination to be an independent and powerful player on the world stage by itself.

This is what makes the debate at NATO about how to deal with this troubled alliance so complicated. The alliance understands Turkey’s values ​​and wants to keep it, but Erdogan appears to be a dual idea of ​​whether NATO is important to Turkey. He didn’t want to withdraw from it. But his actions suggest that he does not believe that an international order led by America – and hence by NATO – enhances Turkey’s power. No matter what happens between the American and Turkish presidents in Belgium Turkey’s leaders must take note and will continue to inform NATO allies that the country will achieve its own goals. Even if it means conflict with allies.

Rather than sweeping the bad behavior of Turkish people under the carpet as the previous government did. Biden seems to have decided in a different way: to work with Erdogan in areas of mutual interest, such as Ukraine and the security of the Black Sea. but does not emphasize what used to be regarded as an important bilateral relationship

Biden-Erdogan meeting Likely to be as cold as with reading data in April But the NATO summit ends when it begins. Leaders continue to complain about Ankara’s role in slowing the Allied response to Belarus, the S-400 problem remains promising. It remains unresolved and Americans are skeptical about an important but difficult alliance. in other words Turkey is a problem And don’t expect Biden or Erdogan to do much about that anytime soon.

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