June 29, 2020
Two weeks ago, France accused Turkey of harassing a French frigate off the coast of Libya while it carried out checks on a Turkish ship that it suspected of breaking the UN arms embargo. Turkey denied the charge. A week later, President Macron said, “I have already had the opportunity to say very clearly to President Erdogan I consider today that Turkey is playing a dangerous game in Libya and is in breach of all commitments it took during the Berlin conference.” Turkish officials reacted. NATO is now investigating the incident at sea. Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged Ataturk, Cameron, Libya, Libya intervention, Macron, Obama, Qaddafi, Sarkozy, Turkey, Turkish foreign policy, UNSC Res. 1973
June 22, 2020
Ataturk was the hero of our War of Independence, the founder of the Republic and Turkey’s greatest ever reformer. His motto was, “peace at home, peace in the world”.
Suffice to say, we no longer have peace at home. Our democracy is in steep decline and we are polarized like we have never been.
Neither the world is at peace. Particularly in the Middle East internal strife and proxy wars are taking their toll on the unfortunate masses. Continue reading
June 15, 2020
The end of the Cold War raised hopes for a more peaceful and stable world with the “international community” collectively confronting global challenges. This proved a myth. After three decades, all we hear now is Cold War II, which essentially means that world’s major powers have failed to redefine their self-centered foreign and security policy priorities and their relationships. Continue reading
May 26, 2020
In April 2017, President Trump hosted his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping for a two-day summit at the Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida. After their meeting, Mr. Trump spoke of “tremendous progress” in the U.S.-China relationship. A year later, the Trump administration announced sweeping tariffs on Chinese imports. The trade war escalated with more tariffs and Chinese retaliation. In December 2018, the chief financial officer Huawei was arrested in Canada at Washington’s request. The trade war intensified. In November 2019, President Trump signed a bill supporting Hong Kong protesters.
At present, the focus is on Hong Kong because China plans to push through, at this year’s China’s National People’s Congress, sweeping national security laws for Hong Kong to bar subversion, separatism or acts of foreign interference against the central government. Critics say this will effectively end the territory’s democracy and autonomy. Continue reading
May 18, 2020
Syria’s relations with Moscow have traditionally been close and steady. Russia operated a military base in Tartus for more than four decades. In the mid-1990s, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, U.S. Secretary of State Warren Christopher Warren Christopher, believing that this offered an opportunity to move Syria away from Russia, went to Damascus 24 times always to leave empty-handed. Continue reading
May 11, 2020
Two months ago, underlining the regrettable shallowness of the concept of “international community”, I said that the world now needs the kind cooperation commensurate with the enormity of the coronavirus challenge, like emergency meetings at the UN Security Council, frequent telephone calls between world leaders and senior health officials, video conferences at the highest level if leaders are advised not to travel. Because, closing of ranks is the only way to fight King Covid XIX’s phantom troops. Continue reading
April 27, 2020
Coronavirus is seen as the greatest global challenge of modern times. Because, the death toll in some countries has reached tens of thousands. Just as important is the shock of unpreparedness, helplessness and vulnerability of a technologically advanced world under attack. A second wave is looming, but second-strike capability is of no consequence. Nonetheless, countries including those hardest hit are planning to ease restrictions because the economy matters. Continue reading
April 20, 2020
Some say that after coronavirus passes “nothing will be the same”. Should that prove to be the case, hopefully the past will not dictate the future.
Last week, President Trump announced he was halting funding to the World Health Organization (WHO). It seems that Washington was not happy with WHO’s praise of China in fighting the coronavirus. “Had the WHO done its job to get medical experts into China to objectively assess the situation on the ground and to call out China’s lack of transparency, the outbreak could have been contained at its source with very little death,” Mr. Trump said. Continue reading
April 7, 2020
The Arab Spring threw the Middle East in chaos. Then came the Ukraine conflict and Russia’s annexation of Crimea. As the Syrian conflict moved up on the international agenda the former receded. Despite on and off official statements regarding the illegitimacy of Crimea’s annexation, everybody knew that there would be no going back. With a rising China and a resurgent Russia “global realignment” became a current topic. There was even talk about “Cold War II” and more investment in military power. The rise of populism and authoritarianism led to a pessimistic outlook regarding the future of democracy. Continue reading
March 27, 2020
“Operation Enduring Freedom”, “Operation Resolute Support”, “Operation New Dawn”, “Operation Unified Protector”, “Operation Decisive Storm”, to name a few, were recent decades’ ambitiously titled military interventions seeking to achieve narrow ends. Although diplomacy and multilateralism were sidelined, they all claimed to have the support of the so-called “international community”. In reality, they only represented its failure. Continue reading