Future Diplomatic Relations between Turkey & U.S. defined by Situation in Syria, Today

Hurriyet Daily News
The U.S. is still the world’s leading super-power by nearly every measurement: GDP, defense spending, and diplomatic influence. But, the U.S. has up until now refused to take decisive action on the crisis in Syria because of America's already stretched resources and the high-risk associated with another intervention in the Middle East. Nevertheless, the U.S. must take a more central and leading role in helping to find a peaceful resolution in Syria or risk having the outcome further disturb America's power balance in the region. If this dynamic is not fully realized, Turkey will grab a majority share of the regional power hegemony instead.

Here are three examples of Turkey becoming the central power broker in the region, over the U.S.:

1. The second ‘Friends of Syria’ conference, being initiated by the Turkish Government and hosted in Istanbul on April 1st, aimed at the al-Assad regime in an attempt to alleviate the military crackdown.

2. Syria appearing to renew support and re-arm the Terrorist organization, the Kurdish Workers Party or PKK in Turkey as retaliation towards the Turkish government’s calls for Bashar al-Assad to step down.

3. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu stating that “A joint action plan should be implemented” and calling on the international community to “react to the ‘agony’ in Syria with a common voice.”

Admittedly Turkey is a strong ally to the U.S. in three major capacities: an economic partner, a defense technology partner, as well as a close NATO ally. But these recent actions are not on behalf of any of these alliances, tacit or expressed. Unlike Libya where we were able to take command by announcing beforehand we could lead from behind, here we have not done so. What will arise from this will probably be a scrambled attempt to try and retroactively insert this same line, when there currently and clearly exists no such sentiment or intent.

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu
These emerging and assertive roles are a smart move for Turkey in the stage of regional politics, but at the cost of American influence in the region. A partial power vacuum in the region has now emerged, with Syria as its nucleus. Russia (and China to a lesser extent) has clearly staked their ground. Now Turkey has positioned itself to make a play for the rest of what is available. The geographical border between Turkey and Syria is over 500 miles long, easily dwarfing (by 2x times) any of the other eight common borders Turkey shares with other countries. The diplomatic relationship between Turkey and Syria has been long and arduous due to lasting border disputes stemming back from the days of the Ottoman Empire. Because of the inaction on the part of the U.S., making special note that this is referring to not just in a militaristic capacity, we are complacently retreating on this ground we have earned.

Cause for immediate alarm is not yet present, but the attitudes and sentiments in Ankara have been shifting. Turkey's collapsing and nearly demolished relationship with Israel has created a semi-awkward situation as a result of the U.S.'s undying and unwavering support of the nation they are now at odds with. What we do or choose not to do in these coming weeks will define us in the decades to come (see my related article here). Because if a fracture between Ankara and Washington D.C. emerges, we will be able to trace it back to this moment. Yes, the relationship between Turkey and the U.S. is easily now the strongest it has ever been. And No, this is not by any means an act of Turkish aggression. But the diplomatic future remains uncertain and interests among allies are known to drift apart over time. 

The U.S. needs preemptively reassure Turkey by actively pressuring Damascus with implementing greater, stricter sanctions, like the EU recently did, and start to immediately send humanitarian aid into the region. Maybe then we can bring help to those who are suffering at the hands of their own government, whilst we wait on the gridlocked UN. With Russia’s policy shift to support Kofi Annan’s recommendation for a ceasefire and the allowing of foreign relief aid into Syria, the situation is progressing. The cessation of the conflict is still of the utmost importance.

(UPDATE: Since this article was written, President Obama and Turkish PM Erdoğan have discussed sending "non-lethal" aid to the Syrian opposition. See the CNN Article Here

The Translations are Here!

In honor and celebration of converting my blog to an official .com [or just my way of procrastinating from my studies] I have updated my NATO Project Page to include the Arabic Plain Text Dictations and the English Translations. I have also applied my new watermark to all of the leaflets - paying special consideration to obscure less of the text and areas of focus. Here is an example of how I formatted all of the leaflets:

NATO Shield
NATO is here to protect civilians.
الناتو هنا لحماية الدنيين
NATO is here to protect civilians and the inhabited areas threatened with attacks. NATO is not here to align to a particular side. NATO is authorized with resolution from the United Nations and has support of the international community and thus wide regional support.
الناتو هنا احماية الدنيين والناطق السكونة الهددة بالهجوم.
ليس الناتو هنا للانحياز إلى جانب معين.
الناتو مفوض بقرار من الأمم التحدة ولدية دعم الجتمع الدولي وكزلك الدعم الإقليمي الواسع.                      

All 20 [+ the misprint] are now on my NATO Project Page in this format. In the coming days, I will be updating my report briefing and will post a download link of the entire PDF compilation of the Leaflets and Translation work and formatting I have done so far...

Stay tuned for more updates concerning this project in the coming weeks, as I will be including specific and rather sensitive protocols and mission directives specifically related to this psy-ops portion of NATO Operation Unified Protector in Libya. Also, closer to May and the end of the Spring semester, I will be posting my complete report and findings on the NATO Project Page as well as releasing a PDF version.

Thanks for following along so far and helping me blaze past 3,500 page views, now into 3,600+!!!


Notice the Difference?

If you look in your address bar, you will see that you are now at www.TheNolanK.com! I decided to relaunch this blog on a dedicated domain host instead of relying on a dot 'tk' service. This means that the excellent and amazing insights provided to the reader by this blog will now be more reliable and more readily accessible.

While this change does modernize and stabilize the blog part of my 'Nolan Kraszkiewicz' publicity branch, I now have to re-watermark all of my NATO Leaflets, redesign and order new business cards, and tell everyone about this new change! You can help by sharing my blog on Facebook or Twitter...

Thanks for the already 3,500+ views in my first year [well, 11 months at this point]!!!
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