Explaining the Change in Turkey’s Identity Question in the European Union Accession Process: A Levels of Analysis Approach
ÇAĞLAYAN ÇETĠN 109677003
ĠSTANBUL BĠLGĠ ÜNĠVERSĠTESĠ SOSYAL BĠLĠMLER ENSTĠTÜSÜ KÜLTÜR YÖNETĠMĠ YÜKSEK LĠSANS PROGRAMI
Prof. Dr. AYHAN KAYA Istanbul, 2011
Explaining the Change in Turkey’s Identity Question in the European Union Accession Process: A Levels of Analysis Approach
Türkiye’nin Avrupa Birliği’ne Giriş Sürecinde Değişen Kimliğini Anlatmak: Düzey Analizi Yaklaşımı
Çağlayan Çetin 109677003
Tez Danışmanının Adı Soyadı (imzası) : Prof. Dr. Ayhan Kaya Jüri Üyelerinin Adı Soyadı (imzası)
: Doç. Dr. Serhan Ada
Jüri Üyelerinin Adı Soyadı (imzası)
: Yrd. Doç. Dr. Itır Erhart
Tezin Onaylandığı Tarih
Toplam Sayfa Sayısı
Anahtar Kelimeler (Türkçe)
Anahtar Kelimeler (Ġngilizce)
1) 2) 3) 4) 5)
Türkiye’nin Kimliği Türkiye’nin Avrupa Birliği süreci Düzey Analizi Kimlik Değişimi Türkiye’nin modernleşmesi
1) Identity of Turkey 2) European Union accession process of Turkey 3) Levels of Analysis 4) Change of the identity 5) Modernization of Turkey
Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği‟ne giriş sürecinde kimliğinde ve bu kimliği yansıtmasında meydana gelen değişim üç başlıkta incelenmiştir: Birey düzeyi, devlet düzeyi ve sistem düzeyi. Birinci düzeyde liderlerden kaynaklanan durum, söylem analizi ile incelenmiştir. İkinci düzeyde devletin politik kültüründen bahsedilmiş, üç kurum (Avrupa Birliği Genel Sekreterliği, Yunus Emre Enstitüsü, Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı) incelenerek AB ilişkilerindeki değişimin devlet düzeyindeki yansımaları gösterilmiştir. Üçüncü düzeyde ise sistemden kaynaklanan değişikliklerin Türkiye‟nin kimliksel açıdan farklı bir tutum izlemesine yol açtığı belirtilmiş, bölgesel analizler yapılarak Türkiye‟nin yumuşak gücüne atıfta bulunulmuştur. Sonuç olarak Türkiye‟nin kimliğindeki değişimin tek boyutlu analizlerle tam olarak anlaşılmayacağına değinilmiş, ileriye yönelik tahminlerde bulunulmuştur.
Identity of Turkey has become one of the most discussed issues in academia, in internal affairs and in world politics especially in the last decade. Turkey‟s accession to European Union has been debated mostly via the identity of Turkey, alongside with the economic or legal terms. In the EU accession period, Turkey‟s stance with regard to its identity discourse has changed. In the previous decades, Turkey has been trying to prove how European she is. Today, there exists a different discourse which underlines the differences of Turkey and Europe; rather than stressing commonalities. This study tries to explain the reasons of the change of Turkey‟s stance in the post-Helsinki period with regard to its identity position towards European Union. In doing so, Kenneth Waltz‟s „Levels of Analysis‟ approach is used as a model. The reasons of the change are explained in three levels. In individual level, the effect of AKP government is dealt, with specific emphasis on the discourses of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and iii
Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu. In state level, the reasons which are stemmed from the very identity of state is put forward. Lastly, the systemic level explores the changes of the system and its reflections on the Turkish identity projection. Turkey‟s increasing soft power emerges as a significant factor within systemic analysis. It is acquired is that one dimensional explanations are not adequate to obtain a full understanding of Turkey‟s position towards EU.
First and foremost, I am deeply grateful to my advisor Dr. Ayhan Kaya for giving me the conﬁdence to explore my research interests. His support and guidance enabled me to develop an understanding of the subject. His understanding character encouraged me to work harder. It was a great pleasure to study with Dr. Kaya. I could not have asked a better advisor. I thank Dr. Serhan Ada and Dr. Asu Aksoy for their encouragement in pursuing further studies in my area of interests. I would like to thank the Chairman of Yunus Emre Institution Dr. Ali Fuat Bilkan, who allocated his time to discuss about the institution, for his polite and welcoming manner. I would also thank all the personnel of Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad for their friendly and helpful attitudes; especially my dear friend Selim Öztürk for his caring. I would like to extend my warm appreciation to my dearest housemates Berna Ağar and Canan Uğur for their patience, support and for relaxing me in tough days. Writing thesis with your accompany was awesome. I am heartily thankful to Ekrem Taha Başer. I am indebted to his brilliant mind and our conversations. He taught me that distances are “what we make of it.” He listened, encouraged, understood and became my light at every moment in every respect. My deepest gratitude goes to my father Tahsin Çetin, mother Gülten Çetin and my lovely sister Pınar Çetin. This dissertation would not have been possible with their love and support they provided me through my entire life.
CONTENTS INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................................... 1 Levels of Analysis ........................................................................................................ 6
CHAPTER 1: A Historical Look to Turkey‟s Identity Question ............................................... 2 1.1. Secularism and Westernization ................................................................................... 13 1.2. Kemalist Reforms ...................................................................................................... 15 1.3. From 1950 to late 1980s: Westernization of the Foreign Policy and Domestic Politics ........................................................................................................ 16 1.4. Post-1980s: Economic Liberalism and Political Islam in Turkey & Emergence of Identity Based Global Contex ........................................................................................... 20 1.5. Turkey – EU Relations ............................................................................................... 23 CHAPTER 2: FIRST IMAGE – INDIVIDUAL LEVEL.........................................................26 2.1. Discourse Analysis: Literature Review….....................................................................27 2.2. Doing Discourse Analysis.............................................................................................31 2.2.1. Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi - AKP).................31 2.2.2. Discourses of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.................................................................33 2.2.3. Discourses of Ahmet Davutoğlu.........................................................................39 CHAPTER 3: SECOND IMAGE – STATE LEVEL...............................................................45 3.1. Secretariat General for EU Affairs..................................................................................52 3.2. Yunus Emre Foundation and Institute............................................................................55 3.3. The Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad..........................................63 CHAPTER 4: THIRD IMAGE – SYSTEMIC LEVEL............................................................69 4.1. Regional Assessments.....................................................................................................71 4.1.1. Europe.................................................................................................................72 4.1.2. Middle East and Arab World..............................................................................74 4.1.3. Balkans................................................................................................................78 vi
4.1.4. Central Asia and Caucasus..................................................................................79 4.1.5. Russian Federation .............................................................................................82 4.1.6. United States.......................................................................................................84 4.2. Soft Power of Turkey......................................................................................................87
Explaining the Change in Turkey’s Identity Question in the European Union Accession Process: A Levels of Analysis Approach
The relations between Turkey and European Union (EU) started in 1959 with Turkey‟s application to join the European Economic Community.Since then, there have always been debates about the thorny road of Turkey and the relations have not been so smooth. In some periods, the relations tensed up due to the political agenda of the day. Some phases were called as honeymoon between Turkey and EU, when occurred progress in the negotiations. Demands of EU have always created arguments inside Turkey, both with regard to the statesmen and in the eyes of the public. However, it might not be wrong to state that in recent years Turkey‟s relationship with EU had never been discussed that intensively from the identical bases. The economic and political challenges that Turkey faces – once regarded as vital problems -, are now seems to be in the back stage. Rather, identity issues are on the scene. In Turkey and also 1
in European states; not only in the academia, but also in the political stage, Turkey‟s identity is projected as playing the leading role in EU membership process. The very identity of Turkey is also subject to a debate. There occurred a literature about the compatibility of Turkey‟s identity to EU identity. Scholars and politicians like Valery Giscard D‟Estang, Richard Wagner, Michael Glos, Alain Besançon, Agustin Jose Menendez and Sylvie Goulard think that Turkish identity is not compatible with European identity. They usually refer to the incompatibility of culture, history and religion of Turkey, with strong emphasis on Ancient Greek and Roman heritage of Europe. The incompability of Turkey‟s identity was not a new claim though. Turkey, being exposed to such assertions, has historically tried to defend itself as being Western as the EU member states. Turkey has developed a discourse affirming that Turkey is and has been a secular country with the 1923 reforms. Turkey liked to use the rhetoric of being in the crossroads of Europe and Asia. She has tried to project her Western identity, secular character and her modern face. Turkey, in the road for EU accession, has tried to locate itself as „being same as the European counterparts‟. Previous statesmen used to use the rhetoric of being like European states, embracing Western values and determination to pursue the modernization process. İsmail Cem was a leader who accepted the previous mindset of Turkey towards Europe. He stated that “We have been trying to be European, counted as Europeans. Accept us, make us Europeans, we are Europeans, we will be Europeans… We have created unnecessary inferiority complexes to ourselves” 1 However, when we came to 2000s, it seems that there occurred a change in the rhetoric of the Turkish identity. Especially nowadays (in 2011), the most common words that we hear on television news or in newspapers are the catch phrases of the „new‟ Turkish foreign policy. Starting with Recep Tayyip Erdoğan government, continuing with Ahmet Davutoğlu‟s being Minister of Foreign Affairs, phrases like „shift of axis, Alliance of Civilizations, Turkey being 1
"Avrupa Türkiye'yi Göze Alamıyor", Milliyet, 23 November 1997
model for Muslim world, being leader of the Arab world‟ started to be used much more frequently. For some statesmen and scholars, Turkey is going through a new phase and has a brand new foreign policy while some others think that there are continuities with the previous governments‟ foreign policy. Leaving aside questioning whether there is a completely new foreign policy or not; it seems that there occurred changes in Turkey‟s identity, at least in the projection of it. This research came into being by questioning whether there is really a change in the pattern of projecting the identity of Turkey. The aim of the research is to find out the changes in the discourse of the Turkey‟s identity in the EU membership process. The research question is “Is there an explicit shift in Turkish identity and what are the reasons of such change?” The hypothesis is that there is a shift in the identity of Turkey towards EU countries. After 2000s, there appeared a different discourse about the Turkish identity towards EU: Turkey has a different identity from the European states. Turkey is a Muslim country. Turkey has geographical and historical ties with Middle East and Arab world, which cannot be neglected in foreign policy making. Turkey belongs to another civilization. Turkey is different and that should be the very reason to be part of EU. Turkey should be the EU member because of the very distinguishing character of it. This discursive shift is not only seen in the political arena, but it is reflected to the academia. Jens Alber, Fuat Keyman, Levent Kırval, Gerard Delanty, Nedret Kuran-Burçoğlu and Wim Duisehberg, are the ones who hold the view that Turkish identity and EU identity are different and that‟s why Turkey should become a member of EU. The proponents of such view usually refer Turkey as a model for Muslim world or a legitimating factor for EU, which attributes the universality of the Enlightenment values to itself.
This study is going to analyze the change in the identity policy of Turkey in the EU accession period. In doing so, prominent neorealist scholar Kenneth Waltz‟s “levels of analysis” approach will be applied. Waltz‟s levels of analysis approach emerged from questioning the reasons of war. This time, the shift which underlines the distinctive character of Turkey is going to be examined with this approach. There are three levels in the analysis: individual level, state level and international level. 2 Waltz states that war is linked to the character of individual leaders, characteristics of states and societies and to the character of the international system. In short, Waltz‟s levels of analysis provides a three dimensional approach and it can be used not only to explain the war, but various issues in world politics. The research is going to encompass all three levels in explaining the shift in identity issues. The individual level of the shift in the Turkish identity towards EU will be studied through the discourses of the Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu. The method in reflecting their stance toward the EU will be „discourse analysis‟. The main topic of interest is to reveal the underlying meaning that may be assumed or played out within the conversation or text. It is related with the tools and strategies people use when engaged in communication, such as use of metaphors, choice of particular words etc. Apart from the speeches of the leaders, recent developments in the foreign policy agenda will certainly be mentioned. Alliance of Civilizations, Caricature Crisis, Davos Crisis, elimination of visas with various countries, official visit of the leaders will be given specific importance. With regard to the state level, three points will be presented as the factors for the identity shift. Embracing different modernities, Euro-skepticism and Turkey‟s economic improvement can be counted as the factors that pave the way for such shift. In order to analyze the state‟s stance, Turkish Secretariat General for EU Affairs (SGEU) will be examined with a 2
Kenneth Waltz, Man, The State, and War: A Theoretical Analysis (New York: Columbia University Press, 1959)
particular emphasis on “EU Communication Strategy 2010” 3 and “EU Strategy for Turkey‟s Accession 20104” documents. Another institution that is going to be studied will be the recently opened Yunus Emre Institute. The aim of the Yunus Emre Institute is to encourage learning Turkish language, culture and history especially in abroad. The analysis will be based on the first hand information obtained through the interview with the President of the Insititute Ali Fuat Bilkan and on the information on the official web site of the institution. Third institution is the Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad. It is newly opened under the Prime Ministry. The works of the institution is affiliated with creating a powerful Turkish diaspora via vitalizing the cultural, historical and ethnic relations with various nations. Its aims and the scope of activities worth studying. Third dimension is the systemic level in which Turkey‟s position in the international arena will be discussed. After the collapse of the bipolar world, the importance of being the reliable „Western partner‟ in NATO for Turkey diminished. After the end of the Soviet threat, hard security issues started to draw away from the international political scene compared to the previous era. The drastic changes after the end of the Cold War pave the way for new positions for states. Such context provided Turkey to redefine its role in the international system and to enlarge its sphere of influence with its soft power. Turkey‟s trade and economic ties enhanced with its Black Sea neighbors and Central Asia states and Turkey took steps to overcome its „isolation‟ and security concerns. Moreover, the system enabled Turkey a wider space of manoeuver in the Middle Eastern politics. Turkey started to involve into the Arab politics more actively. Rather than refraining from being part of the Middle East, Turkey started to seek the ways to be a „model‟ for the region in terms of combining democratic values and Islam alongside with flourishing economic performance. 3
Secretariat General for European Union, “Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği İletişim Stratejisi”[Turkey‟s Communication Strategy of EU] (Ankara: January 2010) 4 Secretariat General for European Union, “Türkiye‟nin Katılım Süreci için Avrupa Birliği Stratejisi” [Turkey‟s EU Strategy for Accession Period] (Ankara: December 2010)
To sum up, the hypothesis of this research is that there is a change in the identity policy of Turkey towards EU. The thesis will try to find an answer to the questions of „where do we see such change and what are the reasons for this discursive shift?‟ After examining all three levels, the outcome of the research came forward is that the change in the identity policy of Turkey is seen in all the levels. In other words, the reason of the change in Turkey‟s identity cannot be explained solely by the conservative background of the government leaders, nor it can be depended on the state‟s character or the world politics. To acquire a comprehensive understanding, one should study all the levels.
Levels of Analysis Being one of the most prominent International Relations scholars, Professor Kenneth Waltz is considered as one of the founders of neo-Realism. His contributions to the academia made him one of the most distinguished scholars in the field. His book “Man, State and War” 5 attracted the attention of the academia in large scale and influenced many other studies. In the book, Waltz searches for the reasons of the war and ways to prevent it. He classifies international relations into three “levels”, which he later called “images” instead (2001), in order to avoid projecting the phases as solid or concrete formations6. While explaining the theory, I will use both “image” and the more popular term “level” interchangeably; and call the “levels of analysis” as a “model”. In his book, Waltz examines the causes of war in three main chapters: human behavior, international structure of states and the international anarchy. Concluding from the context of
Kenneth Waltz, Man, The State, and War: A Theoretical Analysis (New York: Columbia University Press, 1959) Kenneth Waltz Man, The State, and War: A Theoretical Analysis (New York: Columbia University Press, 2001), Preface for 2001 Edition 6
the ideas, the three levels of analysis is widely called as “individual level, state level and the systemic level”.7 “According to the first image of international relations, the locus of the important causes of war is found in the nature and behavior of man…If these are the elimination of war must come through uplifting and enlightening men or securing their psychic-social readjustment.”8
Waltz says that human nature being the cause of the war is not a new idea. It has been put forward by many scholars in different ages like St. Augustine, Spinoza, Niebuhr, Hans Morgenthau and so on.9 The character of individual leaders or the very nature of the human beings leads to war. He did not eliminate the possibility of peace though. He divides the first image into optimists and pessimists; who believe that men are good and there can be peace versus who thinks human nature is bad. While doing his own criticism, he questions who determines „good‟ or „bad‟. The common example to the first level is Hitler and his authoritarian character that paved the way to the World War II. While Waltz summarizes the first image as “the evilness of men, or their improper behavior lead to war; individual goodness, if it could be universalized, would mean peace.” 10, he underlines the insufficiency of the individual level. He underlines that wars do not occur all the time. The factors of the first level are constants and cannot explain the variations in war and peace over time and space. Besides, since “everything is related to human nature, to explain anything one must consider more than human nature.”11 “For possible explanations of the occurrence or nonoccurrence of war, one can look to international politics (since war occurs among states), or one can look to the states themselves (since it is in the name of the state that the fighting is actually done). According to the second
James Lee Ray, “Integrating Levels of Analysis in World Politics”, Journal of Theoretical Politics 13:355 (2001): 355-388 8 Waltz, Man, The State, and War 9 Waltz, Man, The State, and War, p.21 10 Ibid, p.41 11 Ibid, p.81
image, the internal organization of states is the key to understanding war and peace.”12 In the second image, the focus shifts from the characteristics of individuals to the characteristics of states and the societies. Hobbes, Mill, Adam Smith shares similar views. One explanation of this level is that “war most often promotes the internal unity of each state involved.”13 In other words, the preservation of state can be guaranteed by uniting against a common enemy outside. The domestic factors that make states act different in their external relations may appear in many forms. The structure or the characteristic of state leads to war. To specify; militarism, externalization of an internal conflict, governmental forms, political culture or political ideologies, economic systems and the social institutions are the determining factors of the causes of the conflicts. In that sense, the Marxist view stating that the capitalist states are prone to go war and the liberal view claiming that democratic states are less likely to go war, are categorized in the same level, as they place the characteristic of the state into the focus. Waltz states that the domestic affairs and the structure of state is one of the reasons of the war but he does not take it for granted. He questions the second level, and the famous “democratic peace theory”14 at the same time. “Is it that democracies spell peace, but we have had wars because there have never been enough democracies of the right kind? The import of our criticism of liberal theories, however, is that no prescription for international relations written entirely in terms of the second image can be valid, that the approach itself faulty.” 15 In other words, he describes the domestic politics and the character of the state as the causes of the war whereas he puts forward that individual or state behavior cannot be the only determinant in the
Ibid, p.81 Ibid, p.83 14 For more information on democratic peace theory: Michael E. Brown, Sean M. Lynn-Jones, and Steven E. Miller. Debating the Democratic Peace (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1999); David E. Spiro. (1994). "Give Democratic Peace a Chance? The Insignificance of the Liberal Peace". International Security 19:2. (Autumn, 1994): 50-86. 15 Waltz, Man,The State, and War, p.122 13
war-peace equation. Just like societies they live in make men, the international environment makes states. Thus, third level must be considered.
Being among the founding fathers of the neo-Realism, Waltz uses the same international system perception of Realism. The states are sovereign entities and none of them can use force over another. There is no overarching world government and this leads to the anarchy in international arena. In Rousseau‟s words, “the wars occur because there is nothing to prevent them”.
Machiavelli, Thucydides and Clausewitz are among the scholar who places the
international anarchical system into the center of the problem of war. Lack of central authority means that states pursue their own interests, often forcefully and in conflict with the actions of other states. Given that the structure of the state system is anarchic, it serves in inspiring and tempting the political elite into carrying out military-supported power politics. 17 The inexistence of a law enforcing mechanism leads states to act on their own, according to their national interests and their interpretations of acts of other states. In other words, a state acts after considering the acts of other states. This means that “the policy of a state is determined by its goals and by its relations to other states.”18 “Security-dilemma”19 is one of the expected consequences. If the state perceives that if another state is too strong, then it can turn out to be a threat for itself. In order to eliminate the threat, the first state thinks she needs to increase her security by improvements in armed forces or through buying more weapons. After explaining the third image, Waltz adds that examining just international structure would be a mistake. Anarchy is a structural constant and consequently it cannot account for variations in war and peace. Besides, third level cannot explain civil wars, which occur under a sovereign state with the legitimacy to use force. Third image defines a framework of world
Waltz, Man,The State, and War, p.232 Tuğba Ünlü, Middle East Technical University, International Security Course, PowerPoint Slides, (Fall 2008) 18 Waltz, Man,The State, and War, p.211 19 John H. Herz, Political Realism and Political Idealism. A Study in Theories and Realities (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1951), p. 17 17
politics, but in the lack of first and the second images, the determinant elements of the relations and behaviors cannot be understood at all. He asserts that all three images and their relations with each other have vital role in comprehending the world politics: “Men make states, and states make men; but this is still a limited view. One is led to a search for the more inclusive nexus of causes, for state are shaped by the international environment as are men by both the national and international environments” 20 Despite still being one of the reliable models of IR, levels of analysis has faced with some criticisms. One of them is that it does not question the most important level and it focuses on the ultimate consequences of policy makers/states rather than the intentions behind. 21 Another one is the difficulty of separating the three levels and deciding what element should be counted in which level. 22 One of the criticisms of Realism is also valid in this model. According to Realism, states try to survive in the anarchical system and system means everything. Civil society is not usually considered as an actor of world politics. Thus, it is criticized as being a topdown approach, ignoring the effects of the civil society. This research is elaborated with the acknowledgement of such deficiencies. It does not have a claim to encompass all the aspects of the shift of Turkey‟s identity. For example, the paper is not going to deal with the role of the civil society; but only focus on the political side of the story23. Again in accordance with the comments of other scholars and Waltz‟s himself, it is
Waltz, Man,The State, and War, p.230 John A. Vasquez, The Power of Power Politics (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 1988) 22 David J. Singer “The Level of Analysis Problem in International Relations”, World Politics, 14:1, The International System: Theoretical Essays. (October, 1961), p. 84 23 For the role of civil society in Turkey‟s EU accession process see: Türkiye Ekonomik ve Toplumsal Tarih Vakfı, Türkiye‟de Sivil Toplum Kuruluşları Semozyumu – VII, Avrupa Birliği, devlet ve STK‟lar, (İstanbul:Türkiye Ekonomik ve Toplumsal Tarih Vakfı, 2001) ; Senem Aydın Düzgit and Ayhan Kaya (ed.s), Fransa ve Türkiye Arasında Sivil Toplum Diyaloğu: Önyargıları Aşmak (İstanbul: İstanbul Bilgi Üniversitesi, 2009) ; Civil Society Dialogue Between EU and Turkey (Luxembourg: Commission of the European Communities, 2009) ; Erhan Doğan, “Sendikalar ve Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği Seyahati” (Trade Unions and Turkey‟s EU Journey), Akdeniz Universtiy IIBF Jorunal 6 (2003)pp.19-43. ; Ersin Kalaycıoğlu, “State and Civil Society in Turkey: Democracy, Development and Protest,” in Amyn B. Sajoo (ed.). Civil Society in Muslim World: Contemporary Perspectives. I.B.Tauris Publishers: London, New York (2002) pp.247-272. ; Fuat Keyman and Ahmet İçduygu “Globalization, Civil Society and Citizenship in Turkey: Actors, Boundaries and Discourses”, Citizenship Studies, 7:2 (2003) pp.219-234. ; Ayhan Kaya and Ayşe Tecmen “Identity construction programs of the state and the EU: Case Study Phase I” (IME) WP5 (May, 2010) ; Ayça Ergün, “Civil Society in Turkey and 21
not easy to distinguish the three images sharply. One may categorize „reason A‟ into the different level, or may think that reason may be examined in both levels. Such arguments are not seen as the deficiency of the model. It is not regarded as explaining all. This paper regarded the “levels of analysis” as a model to explore the identity shift of Turkey in the EU accession process. Due to the time and space limit, the research will be done in the abovementioned frame. Although Waltz‟s levels of analysis emerged from studying the reasons of war, the model influenced numerous studies and can be well implemented to further international relations issues. However, the picture of the shift of Turkey‟s identity in the EU accession process is tried to be reflected within three images.
Local Dimensions of Europeanization”, Journal of European Integration, 32:5 (September 2010) pp. 507-522. ; Daniella Kuzmanovic, “Project Culture and Turkish Civil Society”, Turkish Studies, 11:3 (September 2010) pp.429-444. ; Gaye Eslen Özerkan and Ceren Mutlu, “Turkey's EU Journey and Turkish Civil Society” International Issues & Slovak Foreign Policy Affairs, 17:1 (2008) pp. 29-46. ; Ahmet Evin, “TurkeyEU Civil society Dialogue: Turkey-EU Observatory Conferences”, İstanbul: Istanbul Policy Center, 2008 http://ipc.sabanciuniv.edu/tr/Yayinlar/EU.html
CHAPTER 1 A Historical Look to Turkey’s Identity Question
Since Tanzimat (1839), Ottoman Empire had done numerous reforms in order to keep up to the level of Western states. However, the clear cut reforms took place with the establishment of the Republic of Turkey, with the reforms done before the declaration of the Republic and just the period after. Atatürk‟s Republic was, by all means, the project of modernization and „reaching to the level of modern civilizations.‟ Thus, Westernization and secularization came together with the idea of modern Turkey. This chapter is going to look into Turkey‟s identity question in the historical context. Basis of Turkey‟s identity is going to be examined with specific emphasis on the terms „modernization‟, „Westernization‟, „Westernism‟, „secularization‟ and „Europeanization‟; which are usually used interchangeably and belived to be mixed in Turkish political scene. The idea behind the establishment of the Republic of Turkey and the Kemalist reforms will be mentioned in the identitcal context. Then, how Turkey has positioned itself as a modern/Western state will be covered by giving references to transformations in Turkish 12
political and social life until late 1980s. The years between 1950 and late 1980s can be regarded as the period that Turkish politics is tried to be „westernized‟ both at home and abroad. Post-1980s can well be called as the period of the emergence of identity based global context. Related with this context developments in Turkey in post-1980s is going to be defined in the light of economic liberalism and the rise of political Islam. Turkey - EU relations is going to be explained within the „Europeanization‟ concept. The prevailing elements in the period until 1980s are the consistency of the actions and the notion of modernization. What is distinct about the last period is the predmominance of the „different‟ identity of Turkey from the West. In other words, from 1990s onwards, the notions of modernization and Westernization are no longer used in the same meaning. 1.1. Secularism and Westernization Latin-origined term „secularism‟ was used from the mid-19th century in the West to specify the separation of church from the state.24 In the usage of secularism, the idea of 'wordliness‟ is stressed whereas in laicism emphasizes the distinction of the laity from the clergy. 25 Both terms, however, refer the same issue. “Secularization or laicization meant the transformation of persons, offices, properties, institutions or matters of an ecclesiastical or spiritual character to a lay, or worldly position.”26 Different from the Christianity, there is not a separate concept of church and state in Islam. Rather, they are believed to be fused together where the state was conceived as the embodiment of religion, and religion as the essence of the state.27 This underlying idea is the reason why concept of secularism has been seen or viewed as inconvenient to the Muslim societies. 28 However, it was Turkey, among all Muslim countries, which adopted secularism and promoted secular policies by constitution. The 24
“Church and State." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, 2011. Web. 08 Jun. 2011. 25 “Secularism." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, 2011. Web. 08 Jun. 2011. 26 Niyazi Berkes, The Development of Secularism in Turkey (London: Hurst&Co, 1998) p.5 27 Ibid. p.5 28 Eleanor Bisbee, “Tesf of Democracy in Turkey” Middle East Journal 4:2 (April 1950): 170-182
secularization of Turkey differs from the Christian countries though. The problem is not between the church and the state, but the revolt is to the tradition that encompasses the state culture.29 Like secularism, Westernization (Batılılaşma) and Westernism (Batıcılık) are the terms that have varriant meanings in the Turkey‟s social and political context. Westernization can be identified as the deed “to cause the ideas and ways of doing things which are common in North America and most of Europe to be used and accepted by someone or something in or from another part of the world.” 30 In Turkey, Westernization is more often correlated with Europe rather than North America. Besides, it is more than harmonizing the way of doing things to Europe, rather “Westernization [is regarded] as a concept and program to “renew” the state and society, in effect, became an identity-constituting orientation.” 31 Westernism, on the other hand, is the term that is more peculiar to Turkey. Westernism in Turkey “explains the thought that started in Ottoman State and gained new dimensions in the Republic of Turkey and that considers Europe as the destination that is needed to be reached and achieved socially and ideologically.”32 To make it clear, Westernization can be called as the process, while Westernism may be regarded as the advocy of the Westernization thought. The following sections would be more helpful to understand the usage of secularism, Westernization, modernization and Europeanization terms in Turkey.
Berkes, The Development of Secularism in Turkey, p.6 Cambridge Dictionaries Online, Westernize http://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/british/westernize?q=westernization 31 İhsan Dağı, “Transformation of Islamic political identity in Turkey: Rethinking the West and Westernization”, Turkish Studies, 6: 1 (2005) p.22 32 Şerif Mardin, “Türk Modernleşmesi” in Murat Belge and Mete Tunçay(eds.) Cumhuriyet Dönemi Türkiye Ansiklopedisi V.1 (İstanbul: İletişim yayınları, 1983), p.9 30
1.2. Kemalist Reforms The Kemalist secularization reforms of first years of the Republic is an explicit reflection of the Western values which stems from the principle of reaching the stage achieved by the civilized nations. Abolition of the Caliphate (1924), abolishing the Ministries of Sharia and Evkaf, closing madrasahs and unifying the education under the Ministry of Education, abolishing the religious settlements (tariqas), elimination of the clause stating the religion of the state is Islam(1928) were the reforms that took place directly after the establishing the Republic. Above all, the state was first named as secular in the Constitution in 1937. The West was the symbol of science and technology, development and the higher civilization. In order reach the level of Western countries, embracing West with its all aspects was the idea; not solely the science, knowledge or techniques. Prohibition of the wearing of fez and making wearing hat compulsory (1925); prohibition of Arab script and the adoption of Latin script instead (1928) were the most striking ones of this kind. “The important point is to free our legal practices, our codes, and our legal organizations immediately from principles dominating our life that are incompatible with the necessities of the age… The direction to be followed in civil law and family law should be nothing but that of Western civilization.”33 Although there were harsh oppositions to the abovementioned reforms both from the society and from the Parliament, Atatürk and his supporters did not take a step back. It was the time for change, transforming the traditional state culture and modernization.34 Searching about the modernization and secularization of Turkey, one will find out that these terms are explained in the same pattern. 35 While the establishment of Turkish national
Atatürk‟ün Söylev ve Demeçleri I (Ankara: Atam Yayınları 1997) p.317 For more information: Metin Heper, "Islam, Polity and Society in Turkey: A Middle Eastern Perspective," The Middle East Journal 35: 3 (Summer 1981), pp. 350-58.; Howard A. Reed, "Atatürk's Secularizing Legacy and the Continuing Vitality of Islam in Republican Turkey," in Cyriac K. Pullapilly, ed., Islam in the Contemporary World (Notre Dame, Indiana: Cross Roads Press, 1980) 35 For more information: Tanıl Bora, Murat Gültekingil and Uygur Kocabaşıoğlu, (ed.) Modern Türkiye‟de Siyasi Düşünce : Modernleşme ve Batıcılık, (Istanbul:İletişim Yayınları, 2002); See also: Feroz Ahmad, The Making of Modern Turkey (London and New York: Routledge, 1993); 34
state is the essence of the modernization; the
reforms are realized according to Turkey‟s
Western civilization trajectory in legal, political, social and cultural means. The Western life style was exemplary. The Swiss civil law, the Italian penal law, and the German commercial law were adopted in 1926. The lunar calendar was abolished and the Gregorian calendar became the only valid calendar (1925). Women were given suffrage (1930). The revolutions were the practical consequences of the detachment from the tradition and following up the drastic changes in parallel with the [Western] world states.36 The Eastern Civilization was seen as the Islamic tradition while the Western Civilization was perceived as the contemporary/ modern civilization. The first one regulates all the spheres of life according to the rules that are revealed by religion. But the latter separates the tradition/religion from the daily necessities and that is why the Western civilization is prior to the other.37 The material adoptions were not adequate to internalize the modernized mentality.
1.3. From 1950 to late 1980s: Westernization of the Foreign Policy and Domestic Politics The peak of the revolutions can be called as the “golden age of Kemalizm”38 whereas the period after that can be regarded as the first democratic steps of the Turkish national state, integration with West in both political and military terms and the rapid economic development. Atatürk‟s single party is replaced with a multiparty system with the victory of the Democratic Party (DP) (1950). Although there existed a multiparty system in the last period of Ottoman State, it was different from the 1950s democratic environment. The change of government by the people‟s will with voting was unique example in the modern Turkish Republic. Since then,
Bernard Lewis, The Emergence of Modern Turkey (London: Oxford University Press, 2002) 36 In Nutuk, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk mentions the concept of breaking from tradition. For more information: Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, Nutuk (Istanbul: Say Yayınları, 2009) 37 Niyazi Berkes, Türkiye‟de Çağdaşlaşma, (Istanbul:Bilgi Yayinevi, 1973) p.465 38 Esra Özyürek, Nostalgia for the Modern: State Secularism and Everyday Politics in Turkey. (Durham, North Carolina, Duke University Press, 2006)
Turkey enjoys the same „structural‟ multiparty system of the West, despite from the several ruptures in 1960, 1971 and in 1980. Turkey has not only turned to West in her internal affairs. Becoming a Western power in the international arena was one of the main tenets that constitute the political agenda. Turkey succeeded to remain neutral in the World War II. Then, she declared war on Germany at the end of the war in order to be member of the United Nations (1945). Likewise, Turkey contributed to the US-led UN military forces to suppress the communist aggression. By this way, Turkey fulfilled the aim of becoming a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) (1952). She sided with Western powers in Cold War (1945-1991) and tried to remote herself from the effects of Communism. More, Turkey happened to be a beneficiary of European Recovery Program, known as Marshall Fund, provided by US government (194851). Turkey also became member of the Council of Europe (1949). In the meanwhile, “the American alliance has been the cornerstone of the Turkish foreign policy for more than forty years”.39 Turkey benefited from the US financial aids in the improvement of agriculture and the modernization of the armed military forces. IMF stability program was accepted in this period (1959). All these developments paved the way for the integration with West. The abovementioned developments in Turkey‟s foreign policy were reflected in the writings of Turkey‟s intellectuals of statecraft. American influence was such strong that in 1957 President Celal Bayar said he hoped Turkey to become “Little America” 40. Similarly, Kamran Inan, Head of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Turkish Senate, published in 1974: “Our membership in NATO is, first of all, an important stride in our westernization movement. We have obtained a place and a say within the Atlantic community. The frontiers of Europe now begin from Eastern Turkey. In the context of our historical development, this constitutes an important achievement and a milestone…The 39
Andrew Mango, Turkey: The Challenge of a New Role, The Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, D.C., (Westport CT: Preager, 1994) p.23 40 Douglas Howard, History of Turkey, (Westport CT, USA : Greenwood Publishing Group, 2001) p.131
countries which have similar political systems, and close values and views of life and common interests generally come together…This has been the case in NATO."41
Leaving international relations aside, the discussions about secularism came to the stage in the domestic political environment. Although DP had the tendency to use religion factor in politics and tried to lessen the restriction of religion in, at least, social sphere; there has not been a change in the secular state principle. “DP did enjoyed strong popular support .The wide public support was the result of the populism and the conservatism in cultural issues that DP has used successfully. However, in 1960 the civilian and democratic rule was interrupted by military to stop the internal conflicts and „to save the democracy‟ with not much opposition of the society.42 Although the coup d‟état is an indisputable break from democracy, the democratic order established in a year and elections are made. The new 1961 Constitution brought broadened sphere of political activities to both right and left parties. Thus, it can be called the more liberalized constitution than the previous one.43 Instituting a second chamber and a constitutional court and by proclaiming the autonomy of universities, broadcasting and other institutions were some of the improvements. The tension of secularism and Islamism has always been felt in the politics of Turkey. After 1950, Democratic Party, leaded by Adnan Menderes, came to power and showed a more flexible and tolerant policy toward Islamic practices. “Prior to 1970, the religious right was just a faction within the mainstream center-right parties. In the 1970s, it emerged as a separate political movement under the leadership of Necmattin Erbakan, who founded the Milli Görüş
Kamran Inan, "Turkey and NATO" Foreign Policy (1974) p.72 [Taken from: Eylem Yılmaz and Pınar Bilgin, “Turkey: Myths and Realties” International Journal 61:1 (Winter, 2005-2006) p.52] pp. 39-59 42 Zurcher, Turkey: A Modern History, p. 351 For more information on the role of the military in Turkish politics see: William Hale, Turkish Politics and the Military, (London: Routledge, 1994); Metin Heper and Ahmet Evin (eds.), State, Democracy and the Military, Turkey in the 1980s, (Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter, 1988) 43 Zurcher, Turkey: A Modern History, p. 359
movement.”44 The era after 1970 is affiliated with the „political Islam‟ in Turkey. 45 „Political Islam‟ or „Islamism‟ is simply approaching Islam as political ideology rather than religion or theology.46 It is regarded as “a form of instrumentalization of Islam by individuals, groups and organizations that pursue political objectives.” 47 First party of this kind in Turkey was National Order Party (Milli Nizam Partisi- MNP), which was closed down by Constitutional Court. Then, National Salvation Party (Milli Selamet Partisi-MSP) was established and it became the coalition partner of People‟s Republic Party in 1974. After 1980, Welfare Party (Refah PartisiRP) was founded. RP came to power in 1995 and formed a coalition government with True Path Party (Doğru Yol Partisi-DYP). As a result of the heavy pressure of the institutions of the secular establishment, this coalition collapsed in 1997 and Welfare Party was closed down by Constitutional Court. This intervention has been known as „28 February Process‟, which expresses the military coup against Refah Party led coalition government. After the closure of the Welfare Party, Virtue Party (Fazilet Partisi) established and banned from political life like previous ones. Today, Felicity Party (Saadet Partisi-SP) represents Islamist ideas inTurkish politics. All these parties define themselves as the followers of a National Vision (Milli Görüş). Islamism, nationalism and anti-Westernism are three main characteristics of National Vision ideology. The followers of Erbakan have repeatedly used the ideas of National Vision without making any essential revision, because National Vision ideology is a true way, which gives opportunity to them to express themselves as the true Turk and true Muslim. National Vision ideology categorizes Erbakan‟s followers as authentic Muslims and Turks and other parties as „the imitators of the West‟.48
Angel Rabasa and Stephen F. Larrabee, Rise of Political Islam in Turkey, (Santa Monica, CA, USA: Rand Corporation, 2008) p.52 45 Ibid. 46 Mohammed Ayoob, Many Faces of Political Islam: Religion and Politics in the Muslim World , (Ann Arbor, MI, USA: University of Michigan Press, 2009) p 2. 47 Guilain Denoeux, “The Forgotten Swamp: Navigating Political Islam,” Middle East Policy 9:2 (2002): 61 48 Banu Eligur, The Mobilization of Political Islam in Turkey, (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010) p.150
Despite the fact that democratization is one of the most important principles of Western political life, secularism and preserving stability prevailed over democracy in Turkey politics as can be felt in all the military interventions. This thesis is not going to delve into the left-right conflicts of the time. But the thing is that; 1960 and 1980 coup d‟états, 1971 memorandum were the ruptures to democracy where the suppression and restrictions were at the stage.
1.4. Post-1980s: Economic Liberalism and Political Islam in Turkey & Emergence of Identity Based Global Context The change started to be felt in post-1980s both in Turkey and in the world. In Turkey economic liberalism and the rise of political Islam were the benchmarks of the aforementioned change, while the identity based global context constitutes the necessary background. Post-1980s were the times that significant changes in Turkish politics started to be felt since its establishment. On one hand, the power of the military and the suppression of in both political and social field continued to be felt in 1980s after the 1982 Constitution. On the other hand, 1980s experienced the first steps towards globalization. One important event of the period was adopting free market economy and making private and foreign investment available in Turkey. Transition to liberal economy promoted closer relations with other free market economy countries, namely the Western countries.
Prime Minister (1983-89) and then
President (1989-93) Turgut Özal pursued close cooperation with US and seeked full membership to the European Community49. Another distinguishing factor of the Özal period was his religious and conservative character. He was known to have connections with the Naksibendi religious order.50 The dilemma of state being secular or democratic started to be felt
more intensively within society. Kurdish issue became one of the major problems as the
Howard, History of Turkey, p. 172 Zürcher, Modern History of Turkey, p.297; Eligur, Mobilization of Political Islam in Turkey, p.113 50
Kurdistan Workers‟ Party (PKK) started first terror activities in 1984. The new voices emerged in Turkey against the rigid Kemalist nationalist stance. The 1995 elections were widely mentioned as the revival of political Islam in Turkey. As Justice and Development Party‟s (AKP) core team emerged out of the Erbakan‟s Refah Party, their vision worths mentioning. In 1995 election campaigns, Erbakan honored Iran for resisting the power of the West. He promised to take Turkey out of NATO, establish an Islamic NATO, an Islamic UN, an Islamic version of the EU, and to generate an Islamic currency. 51 The warning of the military did not take so long. In 28 February 1997, National Security Council stated that the secularism is the guarantee of democracy and law, and made Erbakan resigned. Despite the instabilities of the coalition governments of 1990s, Turkey has been a reliable ally of US and in NATO in her foreign policy; supporting Washington in the 1990-91 Persian Gulf War, allowing US to use İncirlik Air Base and contributing troops to U.S.-led operations in Kosovo and Afghanistan. 52
Putting aside domestic affairs of Turkey, identity and culture started to come up as pivotal actors. In 1983, famous sociologist Gellner stated that “the focus of political loyalties in modern societies is no longer to a monarch or land or faith but rather to a culture”. 53 The forthcoming developments seem to prove the statement of Gellner. The world was going through an unprecedented era in which globalization gained pace. With the collapse of the USSR, the traditional security concept has been challenged. The demise of the ideologically divided bipolar world paved the way to the emergence of different perceptions. In this respect, soft issues; notably culture and identity started to be discussed primarily in US and in Europe. Cultural identity or identity politics has become a prominent issue in studies of world politics in 51
Howard, Douglas A. History of Turkey, p 177. For more information about the Turkish foreign policy after World War II: Stephan F. Larrabee and Ian O. Lesser, Turkey as a US Security Partner (CA, USA: RAND Corporation, 2002); See also Heinz Kramer, Changing Turkey: Challenges to Europe and the United States (Brookings Institution Press: 2000) 53 Ernest Gellner, Nations and Nationalism (New York: Cornell University Press,1983), p.50 52
the post-Cold War era.54 Emergence of large scale political movements, namely feminism, Black Civil Rights in the U.S., gay and lesbian liberation, and the American Indian movements in the second half of the twentieth century, took the world‟s attention inevitably. The claims of injustices that the disadvantaged groups are faced with and the demand for broadening rights affected the internal affairs of the states as well as the world politics. Freud, in his approach to civilization, mentioned that love can bind people together “so long as there are other people left over to receive the manifestations of their aggressiveness” and he called this phenomenon “the narcissism of minor differences” in 193055. Contrary to the popular “narcissism of minor differences” perception; terms such as “cultural differences of people”, “minority rights”, “equality in diversity”, “plurality”, “multicultural environment” and “intercultural dialogue” have bees accepted by the people at large both within the academy and among the societies in 1990s onwards. In such an environment, Huntington‟s “Clash of Civilizations” 56 thesis attracted tremendous attention in the world. It immediately created its antithesis. One of them is the “Alliance of Civilizations”, an initiative of Turkish and Spanish governments, under the umbrella of United Nations57. European Union also set a specific agenda for culture and declared 2008 as “the year of intercultural dialogue”58. „Celebration of differences‟ has turned out to be a significant „trend‟ in the era of globalization. Having the abovementioned features at the background, the movements in the international arena and developments in internal affairs have inevitably effects upon the
For more information: Jongshuk Chay, (ed.), Culture and International Relations (Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1990); Ali Mazrui, Cultural Forces in World Politics (London: James Currey, 1990); David Davis and Will Moore, “Ethnicity Matters: Transnational Ethnic Alliances and Foreign Policy Behavior”, International Studies Quarterly, 41 (1997): 71-84 55 Sigmund Freud, Civilization and Its Discontents (Das Unbehagen in der Kultur, 1930) 56 Samuel Huntington, “Clash of Civilizations”, Foreign Affairs (Summer 1993): 22-49 57 “Many cultures, one humnatiy” is the motto of AoC. See: http://www.unaoc.org/ 58 See: http://www.interculturaldialogue2008.eu/
identity of Turkey. Turkey‟s outlook started to deviate from the „Turk, Muslim, Sunni‟ trilogy, which was once treated as the core of the Turkish society. 59
1.5. Turkey - EU Relations In order to understand the Turkey-EU relations of today and for better comprehension of the Turkey‟s changing stance towards “Europeanization”, one must look to the historical relations of the actors. As mentioned before, Westernization has turned out to be the “sine qua non” of the Turkish modernization and is usually used as the synonym of modernization.60 “In fact, Turkey‟s membership to EU is seen as a bet over if a country, which has a desire to synthesize the Western ideas in cultural, political and economic structure with her owns‟, can transform herself enough in order to be counted as a Western country. In this way, Turkey made herself a laboratory to test the various fashionable notions and theories.”61 The Turkey – European Community/Union (EC/EU) relations are going to be reflected in this perspective in two sections: pre-Helsinki period and post-Helsinki period.
Turkey pointed out her will to be part of the Western states‟ system by becoming member of the Council of Europe in 1949, NATO in 1952, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (first OECC, then OECD) in 1948 and Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in 1999. Turkey applied to European Economic Community (EEC) in 1959. Ankara Agreement of 1963 established the basis of the legal relations between Turkey and the EU. The agreement is also the initial step of Turkey‟s membership to the Customs Union. EC declined the full membership application of Turkey in 59
Soner Çağaptay, Islam, Secularism, and Nationalism in Modern Turkey: Who Is a Turkey, (Routledge, 2006) Ziya Öniş, “Turkey‟s Encounters with the New Europe: Multiple Transformations, Inherent Dilemmas and the Challenges Ahead”. Journal of Southern Europe and the Balkans, 8:3 (2006) Draft 61 B.Park, “Turkey‟s EU Candidancy :From Luxembourg to Helsinki to Ankara” Interntional Studies Association 41.Annual Convention, (Los Angeles, CA: 14-18 March 2000) , p. 9 60
1989, stating that EC needed to improve in itself while Turkey is required to be developed economically, politically and socially. In 1963-1999 period, no radical changes occurred in the political arena, but the economic and trade relations improved due to the Customs Union principle. December 10-11, 1999 Helsinki Summit came about to be the milestone both with regard to the Turkey-EU relations and the democratization period of Turkey. In Helsinki Summit, Turkey‟s candidacy to become EU member is officially accepted, with the same conditions which are applied to the other candidate states. After the candidacy status, Turkey‟s relations with EU acquire a decisive quality and EU‟s credibility increased in the eyes of Turkey. In the Helsinki Summit, it is declared that Turkey needed to fulfill the Copenhagen criteria (1993) - the series of conditions that all candidates need to meet. In order to start to the negotiation process, it is stated that Turkey should have the institutions that guarantees the superiority of the democracy and law, protection of the human rights and minority rights and possesses well-functioning market economy, ability to compete with the EU market forces and capacity to confirm with and implement the decisions taken by EU. By this way, the frame of the Turkey-EU relations was drawn. The criteria and the level that Turkey supposed to reach were mentioned on definite terms.62 After the Helsinki Summit, the Europeanization process gained speed with the reforms on democratization in Turkey. Thanks to the decision taken in the Brussels Summit in the previous year, Turkey started the negotiation process in 2005. In this period Turkey took significant steps on the improvement of human rights and minority rights, rule of law and regulation of the operation of the democratic institutions.
Looking to the historical relations and the modernization approach of Turkey, it would not be wrong to state that Turkey projects suitable and fruitful example to the term of 62
Kıvanç Ulusoy, Turkey‟s Reform Effort Reconsidered 1987-2004, European University Institute Working Papers, RSCAS 2005:28 (2005) htpp://www.iue.it/RSCAS/Publications
„Europeanization”‟ According to Radaelli, “Europeanization consists of processes of a) construction, b) diffusion and c) institutionalization of formal and informal rules, procedures, policy paradigms, styles, 'ways of doing things' and shared beliefs and norms which are first defined and consolidated in the EU policy process and then incorporated in the logic of domestic (national and subnational) discourse, political structures and public policies.” 63 Especially in the pre-Helsinki period, what we see is that Europeanization became the outcome of the Turkey‟s aim to reach to the contemporary civilizations. She did not only adopt the formal and informal rules, procedures and policy paradigms; but also embraced the Western norms, styles, values and the ways of doing things. However, in the era after the Helsinki Summit, especially after 2002 with the AKP government, there occurred countless debates about the identity of Turkey. The argument whether Turkish identity is compatible with European identity is a popular discussion and it has always been on the agenda. Turkey had been repelling the opposite arguments and had been continuing to refer herself as a Western country until recently. The latest argument is that whether Turkey is drifting apart from the West. Numerous debates came into existence with the AKP‟s coming to the power and due to the changes both in the world politics and the world political system. The argument if Turkey is turning her face to Middle East and Muslim countries has become a very popular issue and it found place abundantly both in the academia and in the daily life of a Turkish citizen through the news. The aim of this paper is to reach to a conclusion about this shift of the identity of Turkey. There is no doubt at all that civil society affected the identity debates and there are also economical and sociological dimensions of the issue. But this paper will focus only on the political domain.
Claudio M. Radaelli, “Europeanisation: Solution or Problem?” European Integration Online Papers 8:16 (2004) p.3
Chapter 2 First Image - Individual Level
The first image is going to discuss individuals‟ effects in the change of Turkey‟s identity projection towards EU. By individuals; political leaders are meant, namely the policy makers. The role of the individuals will be examined via discourse analysis. (Discourse analysis will also be used in interpreting the in-depth interviews made for the state level.) Discourse analysis has gained influence among the individuals working in a variety of disciplines as they are coming to recognize the ways in which changes in language use are linked to wider social and cultural processes, and hence are coming to appreciate the importance of using language analysis as a method for studying social change. 64 Being widely used in almost every branch of social sciences65, there is an explosion of interest in the concept of discourse and discourse analysis. 66 Thus, one of the most effective ways to understand political leaders‟ stance towards Turkish identity is thought to be discourse analysis. In this section, first the discourse analysis itself will be explained via the writings of prominent scholars and political discourse analysis will be 64
Norman Fairclough, Discourse and Social Change, (Cambridge UK, Cambridge MA: Polity Press, 1992), p.1 For more info about the variety of disciplines see: Van T. Dijk, (ed.) Handbook of Discourse Analysis, Vol.4 (London: Academic Press, 1985) 66 David Howarth, Aletta J. Norval and Yannis Stavrakakis (eds.), Discourse Theory and Political Analysis. Identities, Hegemonies and Social Change, (Manchester and New York: Manchester University Press,2000) 65
mentioned. Then, the discourses of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu are going to be examined. Mentioned in the first chapter, the change started to be felt in late 1980s, but it was the AKP government that pushed the EU accession process more than any other government in Turkish political life. Thus, the acts and discourses of AKP policy makers matter much more. For this reason, the discourses of the AKP leaders will be analyzed from 2000 to today. 2.1. Discourse Analysis: Literature Review “Discourse theory assumes that all objects and actions are meaningful, and that their meaning is conferred by historically specific systems of rules.” 67 Discourse analysts presume that discourses are both constructed and constructive. It means that, “all objects are objects of discourse, as their meaning depends upon a socially constructed system of rules and significant differences”68. On the other hand, discourses construct, constitute, reproduce, challenge and restructure systems of knowledge and belief. 69 There is not one single explanation of the discourse. In some studies, only speeches are taken as discourse; while some embrace spoken dialogue and written language70. Likewise, various scholars imply their own approaches of doing discourse analysis. Although the proliferation of forms of discourse analysis makes it difficult to categorize, different approaches of prominent scholars will be looked through in order to acquire essential knowledge about discourse analysis. Zellig Harris is the first to use the „discourse analysis‟ term in 1952. He moved forward from the descriptive linguistics and highlighted the relation between language and culture. Since late 1960s, the role of language in structuring power relations gained popularity in the academia. Scholars such as Foucault, Derrida and Weaver have written about the function of
Ibid., p.2 Ibid., p.2 69 Norman Fairclough, Discourse and Social Change, p.169 70 Ibid, p.3 68
language in constructing, preserving and challenging power and knowledge. 71 Foucault has contributed to the social theory with discourse analysis rather than mechanical linguistics. In his constitutive view of discourse, discourse actively constitutes and constructs society on various dimensions. Discourse constitutes the objects of knowledge, social subjects and forms of „self‟, social relationships, and conceptual frameworks. 72 Pêcheux, explained Foucault‟s „discursive formation‟ term as the determinant factor of what can and should be said.73According to him, words change their meaning according to the positions of those who use them. Edwards & Potter discuss discursive psychological analysis of the role of psychological talk in institutions.74 Thompson is one of the prominent scholars who wrote about the relation between discourse, ideology and power relations. Thompson arrives at the conclusion that study of the ideology is the competition of meanings (signification) over sustaining the domination. In other words, “Thompson points out that language is used as a medium by which society perpetuates unequal power relationships among classes, sexes, races and nation states”.75 In addition, George Orwell‟s critical position towards discourse and the repression in his “1984” novel is usually counted as one of the milestones of the forthcoming studies. Works of Fairclough, Fowler, Hodge and Kress, Halliday and Chomsky are worth mentioning in this category with their influence in affiliating linguistics to social and political activities. Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) is one of the approaches of discourse analysis.
Fairclough, Discourse and Social Change, p. 26 Michel Foucault, The Archaeology of Knowledge and The Discourse on Language (New York: Pantheon Books, 1972) 73 Michel Pêcheux, Language, semantics and ideology (New York: St. Martin's Press,1982) 74 Jonathan Potter and D. Edwards, "Discursive psychology", in McHoul, A.W., Rapley, M., (Eds), How to analyse talk in institutional settings: A casebook of methods (London: Continuum International.2001) 75 Martin Jonghak Baik and Rosa Jinyoung Shim, Language, Culture and Ideology in the English Textbook of Two Koreas, in World Englishes: Critical Concepts in Linguistics, Kingles Bolton & Braj B. Kachru (Eds) (New York: Routledge, 2006) 72
Norman Fairclough, Teun A. van Dijk and Ruth Wodak are the most notable academics in the field and they have contributed to CDA literature in great extends. According to them, written or spoken „discourse‟ is a form of social practice.76 “It [CDA] assumes a dialectical relationship between particular discursive acts and the situations, institutions and social structures in which they are embedded: the situational, institutional and social contexts shape and affect discourse, and, in turn, discourses influence social and political reality. In other words, discourse constitutes social practice and is at the same time constituted by it.”77 It is „critical‟ because it “primarily studies the way social power abuse, dominance, and inequality are enacted, reproduced, and resisted by text and talk in the social and political context.”78 Contrary to the ones who do not count CDA as a reliable analysis due to the lack of a common rules to apply it, Van Dijk and Michael Billig argue that its strength lays in articulating different concepts in each research. Fairclough and Wodak summarize the main assumptions of CDA as follows: “1. CDA addresses social problems 2. Power relations are discursive 3. Discourse constitutes society and culture 4. Discourse does ideological work 5. Discourse is historical 6. The link between text and society is mediated 7. Discourse analysis is interpretative and explanatory 8. Discourse is a form of social action.” 79
Fairclough well examines the deficiencies in discourse analysis. He criticizes that discourse analysis either focus on the mechanical analysis in which the linguistics are looked through solely as formalistic and cognitive paradigms; or the domination of social sciences is felt strongly, leaving the technical analysis behind. He comments that „critical linguistics‟ approach 76
Norman Fairclough and Ruth Wodak, Critical Discourse Analysis, in T. A. van Dijk (ed.), Discourse Studies: A Multidisciplinary Introduction: Vol.2. Discourse as Social Interaction.( London, UK: Sage Publications, 1997) 77 Ruth Wodak, et. al. The Discursive Construction of National Identity (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999: 2009) p.8 78 Teun A. Van Dijk, Critical Discourse Analysis, Discourses, p.353 http://www.discourses.org/OldArticles/Critical%20discourse%20analysis.pdf (Original: Fairclough and Wodak, Critical Discourse Analysis, 1997) 79 Ibid,p.353 (Original: Fairclough and Wodak, Critical Discourse Analysis, 1997)
of 1970s, „systemic linguistics‟ approach of Halliday80 and works of Michel Pecheux lack from a balance between the social and linguistic elements of the synthesis. Thus he synthesizes the works of Antonio Gramsci, Louis Althusser, Michel Foucault, Jürgen Habermas and Anthony Giddens.81 He has elaborated the relationship between use of language and the social change. “Changes in language use are an important part of wider social and cultural changes. Changing discourse practices contribute to change in knowledge (including beliefs and common sense), social relations, and social identities; and one needs a conception of discourse and a method of analysis which attends to the interplay of these three.” 82 To sum up, language has a vital role in social and cultural change that “attempts to engineer the direction of change increasingly include attempts to change language practices.” Discussing the identical change in Turkish politics, this dissertation has mostly benefited from the studies of Fairclough. Although Wilson and Schlegoff criticizes Van Dijk, Wodak or Fairclough as taking clear political position while doing analysis, 83 they insist that discourse analysis is not that naïve methodologically and epistemologically. Despite the criticisms, they remain to be prominent scholars that influence the discourse analysis as a whole. Explaining the main assumptions of discourse, discourse analysis, political and critical discourse analysis, I am going to focus on the discourses of Turkish political leaders that shape the political agenda in Turkey. Applying discourse analysis, there is no need to explain in detail that in this dissertation the identity will be treated as a notion that is constructed, can be reconstructed, deconstructed, and can be changed. I am not going to get into the detail of the idea of national identities being constructed. However, what I want to summarize is that I will assume that national identity is shaped politically and institutionally by state, by media and
Michel Halliday, Language as Social Semiotic: the Social Interpretation of Language and Meaning (Sydney: Edward Arnold, 1976) 81 Fairclough, Discourse and Social Change, p. 1 82 Ibid, pp.5-8 83 Martyn Hammersly, “Conversation analysis and discourse analysis: methods or paradigms?” Discourse&Society 14:6, (2003) p.751-782
through everyday social practices. In this picture, discourses are the part of social practices that have role in formation of identities and at the same time formed by the same means.
2.2. Doing Discourse Analysis In this section, discourses of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu are going to be analyzed. Discourses cannot be understood apart from the society it is constructed. Thus, for better understanding, the background of Justice and Development Party is presented in the first section. 2.2.1. Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi - AKP) With the general elections in 3rd of November 2002, AKP accomplished to come to power as a single party. Turkish political scene had been dealing with unstable coalition governments and the AKP rule is welcomed by tradesmen and the economic elite. Apart from the stability, AKP government is regarded as a sign of the rise of the political Islam in Turkey due to its conservative character and Islamic roots, as the leaders of AKP were previously integrated in the series of parties that represented religious conservative National View movement. From the beginning, secularist and Kemalist elite has been skeptic about the Islamist background of AKP and its ties with Gülen Movement.84 Opposition parties, military, judiciary, media, civil society organizations and significant part of the public make serious attempts to warn the AKP government because of its perceived intention of making Turkey an Islamic state. Despite the opponents, AKP has achieved electoral victories on 2002 (first party in general election with 34% of the votes) , in 2004 with 40% (municipal election), 2007 (first party in general election with 47% of the votes), 2009 with 38% (municipal election) and 2010 (referendum for the “civil” constitution proposed by AKP accepte with 55% of the votes). AKP was successful in 84
For more information about Gülen Movement: Helen Rose Ebaugh, The Gülen Movement: A Sociological Analysis of a Civic Movement Rooted in Moderate Islam (Texas,US: Springer, 2009); M. Hakan Yavuz, Turkish Islam and the Secular State: The Global Impact of Fethullah Gulen Nur Movement New York,US: Syracuse University Press, 2003
dismantling itself from the predecessor Islamist parties and engaging into Europeanization process. In fact, AKP‟s being one of the parties with an Islamic background and being the most active supporter of EU at the same time posed an irony. AKP has been successful in positioning itself as the center-right party with conservative-democrat stance, embracing universal values and implementing serious reforms in the road to EU membership. From the beginning of coming to the power, AKP took serious steps that lead to the transformation of Turkey both in the domestic and international arena. The party –especially in the first years of coming to power- put stress on democracy, human rights, civil rights and cultural rights which lead to legitimize the importance they give to religion socially and politically. Shaping the party vision around the democratic values, aim of EU membership, implementing EU reforms, defining „Democratic Opening‟, “AKP approached transformation as a positive vehicle by which to increase its electoral support, its political power and its societal (both domestic and global) legitimacy and acceptance.”85 AKP disengage itself from the traditional National View and prevented itself from being labeled as anti-modern or anti-EU. AKP presented a unique example in Turkish political life. As mentioned above, EU membership was seen as one of the necessities of the Westernization process of the Kemalist secular vision. AKP‟s combining Islamic values and modernization paved the way for a different type of modernization that Turkey has not experienced before. In Erdoğan‟s words, his government is an important opportunity for the “conservative idea, which emphasizes tradition, history and social culture, gives religion a significant place and (re)constructs itself in a democratic form.”86 In order to understand the discursive shift in Turkey‟s identity, Erdoğan‟s speeches will be analyzed in the next section.
Fuat Keyman, Modernization, Globalization and Democratization in Turkey: The AKP Experience and its Limits Constellations 17:2 (2010) p.321 86 R.Tayyip Erdoğan, “Opening Speech of Prime Minister Erdoğan”, Symposium on Conservatism and Democracy, Istanbul, (10 January 2004): 20 May 2010 http://www.akparti.org.tr/haber.asp?haber_id=6532.
2.2.2. Discourses of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan The differentiation in the identity discourses is widely is seen in Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan‟s speeches. His speeches about the Alliance of Civilizations and caricature crisis propose illuminating examples. I will introduce these two important events and the statements of Erdoğan on the issues. Then, I will mention some other speeches of Erdoğan, which do not point a specific event, but are important in observing the discursive shift. Alliance of Civilization (AoC) is an initiative of the Governments of Turkey and Spain with the aim of eliminating the polarization between different societies and cultures. It came into being in 2005 and then institutionalized under UN. Erdoğan, in the opening of Second Forum of AoC, stated: “We said no to those who said that the clash of civilizations is inevitable and proved them that the alliance of civilizations is attainable. […] We, as Turkey and Spain, have believed the premise that peace and dialogue are attainable and we based our journey on this very premise. We believed in our hearts that mutual understanding and tolerance can be attained between the Christian and Muslim communities, Muslim and Jewish communities, and Western and Eastern worlds.”87
Turkey‟s being the co-chair of the AoC on its own is the indicator of embracing a civilization other than those from Europeans. Stating that West and East, Christian and Muslim communities need to communicate, Erdoğan underlines that culture and civilization are solid and unchangeable notions that have concrete borders. Looking from this perspective, it can be stated that Clash of Civilizations and AoC are the product of the same line of thought anthropologically. 88 In addition to that, his speech makes it clear that he had internalized Turkey being “Muslim”, rather than being “Western”. In his speech in the Third AoC Forum, he talked on the problems on the misperception of the Islam. 87
R.Tayyip Erdoğan, “Second Forum of Alliance of Civilizations Speech”, AKP Official Web Site, (2009): 20 May 2010 http://eng.akparti.org.tr/english/news4.html 88 Ayhan Kaya, “„Uygarlıklar Çatışması ve „Uygarlıklar İttifakı‟ Söylemleri Bağlamında Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği Bütünleşme Süreci,” in Günay Göksu Özdoğan ve Gencer Özcan (eds.), Haluk Ülman‟a Armağan.(İstanbul:2011)
“I always say, “There‟s no Islamic terrorism.” Islam and terrorism are two contrary, opposite words to each other that cannot come together […] How wrong a blind enmity towards the West is, and how wrong anti-Semitism is, it‟s as much as wrong to connect Islam with terrorism….Islamophobia is also that wrong.”89 Trying to correct the improper perceptions about Muslims, Erdoğan position himself as the spokesman of the Islam. “Belonging to the Islam Civilization”, he has the authority to speak in the name of Muslims. Spain symbolizes the Christianity and Turkey stands for the „good‟ example of a Muslim country. The roles are also evident in the article that Erdoğan and Spanish Prime Minister Zapatero co-wrote in the International Heralde Tribune. 90 Similar attitude is seen in the Caricature Crisis in 2005. Briefly, the crisis is about the twelve cartoons that are published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten on 30 September 2005. In the cartoons, Islamic Prophet Muhammed is depicted like a terrorist and somehow in an improper way.91 With the publication of the cartoons, the newspaper and the Danish government encounter with serious protests of Muslim societies and condemnations of the Islamist countries‟ leaders. After six months, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen was the closest candidate to be the new leader of NATO. Erdoğan stated that he is opposed to Danish Prime Minister‟s candidacy due to the Caricature Crisis. In his words, “We have gone through a caricature crisis. I make him a request to invite all the ambassadors of the Islamic countries, explain the situation and discuss how to overcome this event. He did not respond positively. How will those who do not have a contribution in the peace process react after? We have question marks. I, by myself, am negative.”92
R.Tayyip Erdoğan, “Medeniyetler İttifakı Üçüncü Forumu Konuşması”, Presidency Official Web Site (2010) : 20 May 2011 http://www.basbakanlik.gov.tr/Forms/pDetay.aspx 90 Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Jose Rodriguez Zapatero, “A Call for Respect and Calm,” International Herald Tribune, (February 5, 2006): 26 May 2011 http://www.nytimes.com/2006/02/05/opinion/05ihtedprimes.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=%EF%82%A7%09Recep%20Tayyip%20Erdo%C4%9Fan%20and%20Jose%20 Rodriguez%20Zapatero,%20%E2%80%9CA%20Call%20for%20Respect%20and%20Calm&st=cse 91 For the caricatures: http://www.aina.org/releases/20060201143237.htm 92 “Erdoğan: Rasmussen‟in adaylığına karşıyım” NTV, (April,3 2009): 5 May 2011 http://www.ntvmsnbc.com/id/24953179
In his speech, it is understood that he includes Turkey in “Islamic countries”. More, when the expected apology did not come, he opposes Rasmussen‟s candidacy of being NATO General Secretary as he is the Prime Minister of Denmark, the country where the caricature crisis emerged. Speaker of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey of the day Bülent Arınç did not only condemned the crisis but also took action. He sent letters to the speakers of the EU member states‟ national assemblies condemning the crisis and inviting them to be more moderate.93 He stated: “In order to avoid such crisis [caricature crisis] and to leave peacefully, EU needs to embrace a new vision and a new perception on the relations among civilizations, different religions and cultures.”94
Although the caricatures are published in one newspaper, the blame is attributed to the state of the newspaper and as Denmark is an EU member state, EU as a whole became the subject of the argument. This is reaching to a conclusion from a small sample and making hasty generalization. Again, Turkey is regarded as the spokesman of the Muslim states, whom herself is part of, and the craricatures effected the NATO presidency elections. Again, on one part there are Western states, namely EU, and on the other part there are Islamic countries, which Turkey is included, in this case. Apart from specific cases, Erdoğan and his cabinet are generous in making statements about the EU affair of Turkey. During his visit to Italia, he explained his visit as: “I said „you and we need to admit that EU is not a Christian club, EU is not restricted to the geographical border, EU is not an economic union but EU is the sum of the political values.‟ […] Turkey can be a
“TBMM Başkanı Arınç, Karikatür Krizi ile İlgili Olarak AB Üyesi Ülkelerin Meclis Başkanlarına Bir Mektup Gönderdi”, TBMM, (February, 09 2006): 8 May 2011 www.tbmm.gov.tr/develop/owa/tbmm_basin_aciklamalari_sd.aciklama%3Fp1%3D32343+Arınc+karikatür+krizi &cd=3&hl=tr&ct=clnk&gl=tr&source=www.google.com.tr 94 “Bülent Arınç:'Karikatür krizinden ders çıkarmalıyız", Mynet Haber, (June,30 2006): 8 May 2011 http://haber.mynet.com/detay/politika/karikatur-krizinden-ders-cikarmaliyiz/259022'
model for EU. Turkey will change the thoughts of the 1.5 billionpopulated Islam community towards EU in a positive way.” 95 In this speech, three points worth mentioning. First, Erdoğan accepts all the Muslim states, even all the Muslims around the world as a whole, homogeneous and unified entity. He disregards the differences among Muslims, namely different sects, different practices or how devout they are. Second, it is explicit that he refers to Turkey as an exemplary state of the whole Islamic community. Third, the message is that, despite the EU membership‟s benefits to Turkey; Turkey would provide benefits to EU in case of membership. Emphasizing Turkey‟s benefits to EU, with regard to the Turkey‟s sui generis identity is also a new discourse. Erdoğan also said that “Turkish EU membership could help Europe integrate Muslims.”96 It is understood that Turkey‟s role is not one-dimensional. Turkey will change the perception of Muslims towards EU and at the same time will be beneficial for Europe to integrate Muslims as well. Another significant concept in Erdoğan‟s discourses is “Christian Club”. He uses this term frequently in order to justify Turkey‟s membership. His manner toughens throughout the years. He was saying that “EU is not a Christian Club and Turkey‟s membership will be the proof of it.”97 In 2009, in his speech in University of Gdańsk in Poland, he emphasized that “If Turkey does not become a part of EU, the union will only be a Christians' Club, but nothing else. This is the reality,”98 In one of his speeches in 2010, in the Black Sea Technical University (Karadeniz Teknik Üniversitesi) in Turkey, he stated that “if you [EU] are not a
“Erdoğan: Türkiye, 1.5 Milyarlık İslam Aleminin AB‟ye Bakışını Farklı Kılıp, Olumlu Hale Getirecektir”, Haber Vitrini, (September, 07 2003): 15 May 2011 http://www.habervitrini.com/haber.asp?id=98097 96 Christian Wienberg, “Erdogan says Turkish EU membership could help Europe integrate Muslims”, AP Worldstream (November 15, 2005): 15 May 2011 http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P1-115273664.html 97 “AB Bir Hristiyan Kulübü Değildir.” Mynet Haber, (February 16, 2004): 19 May 2011, http://haber.mynet.com/detay/politika/ab-bir-hristiyan-kulubu-degil/118036 98 “Turkish Premier at Poland's Gdansk University” Turkish Weekly, (May,16 2009): 13 May 2011 http://www.turkishweekly.net/news/76950/turkish-premier-at-poland-39-s-gdansk-university.html
Christian Club, then you have to accept us as a member. The only way to disprove being Christian Club, is to accept Turkey whose population is Muslim” 99 Apparently enough, Erdoğan shapes the claims of Turkey towards EU, not within the economical or political context, but in the identy bases. He uses the same language of Clash of Civilizations and tries to form Turkey in the frame of AoC. Using “Christian Club” term, he clearly points out the difference between Christian Europe and Muslim Turkey. In this context, the subtext emerges: Turkey should become a member because it is different from European states. Turkey is non-European with its identity. Another significant concept in Erdoğan‟s discourses is the modernity without loosing distinctive values. He emphasizes the values, traditions, culture, morality as the essentials of Turkey. In many of his speeches, he stressed that European modernity is just one type of modernity whereas Turkey has its own. To illustrate; “The conjuncture, current situation, and real policy could not be the main determining factors of the foreign policy. Such an understanding, which is disconnected from our culture, morality, and conscience, cannot produce a humanitarian policy. One of the fundamental reasons why Turkey wins approvals in a wide geography, especially in the Middle East, is that Turkey defends such principals.”100
Turkey is trying to pursue a multi-dimensional foreign policy and Middle East appears to be one of the most important regions in that sense. In the discourses of leaders, it is frequently mentioned that Turkey has historical and cultural ties with Middle East and cannot just wait and see what happens. Turkey no longer isolated itself from the Middle East and not only wants to participate but also to be the key figure. Thus, in order to achieve its multi-dimensional 99
“Erdoğan: AB Hıristiyan Kulübü değilse...”, NTV, (June, 12 2010): 1 May 2011 http://www.ntvmsnbc.com/id/25105673/ 100 R. Tayyip Erdoğan, „Changing Balances and the Rising Importance of Turkey‟, Speech delivered at the International Strategic Research Organization (USAK), Journal of Turkish Weekly (February,10 2010): 6 May 2011 http://www.turkishweekly.net/news/97459/full-text-of-prime-minister-erdogan-39-s-speech-at-usak-39-thechanging-balances-and-the-rising-importance-of-turkey-39-.html
policy and keep its popularity in Middle East, preserving the cultural values is the key. Morality and culture matter in the Middle Eastern politics. “It is possible to change with local dynamics, with protecting local values. It is possible to construct a future inspired by its history, roots and ancient civilization. It is perfectly possible to change without demolishing or distorting believes, refusing societal values. There, with the experiences, Turkey proved that such change is possible.” 101 “Demolishing or distorting believes and refusal of societal values” are attributed to the previous governments, who tried to prove that Turkey possesses Western values. Again, Erdoğan underlines the Turkish “exceptionalism” 102 and features Turkey‟s own local values, other than those of Western states. Analyzing the usage of “us” and “them” is a common practice in discourse analysis. As widely encountered in discourses of leaders trying to build the national identity, it is common in Erdoğan‟s as well. In the opening of the new facility building of Turkish Embassy of Bishkek, he defined “we” as the states in Central Asia, and “they” as EU states. He said: “As you know, in the EU, there is an implementation called Schengen. If they implement this, we, as the brother states [sic] in Central Asia can implement such policy among ourselves.” 103 To sum up, Erdoğan highlights the unique Turkish identity, rather than commonality with Europe. Alliance of Civilizations is the most apparent example of this view. Turkey‟s role as bridge, this time, is defined between West and Islam. Caricature crisis enhanced the tension between Muslim and Christian societies and Erdoğan, with his team, volunteered for advocating Islam and being the spokesman of Muslims around the world. With Erdoğan‟s discourses, Turkey is projected as the model and exemplary state for the Islam states. 101
“Başbakan: Haçlı Seferleri Münasebetsizlik”, Zaman, (March 24, 2011): 8 May 2011 http://www.zaman.com.tr/haber.do?haberno=1112152&title=basbakan-hacli-seferlerimunasebetsizlik&haberSayfa=2 102 For more information about the discourses on Turkish exceptionalism see: Lerna K. Yanık, “Constructing Turkish “exceptionalism”: Discourses of liminality and hybridity in post-Cold War Turkish foreign policy”Political Geograpy (30:2) February 2011, pp. 80-89 106 “Brezilya'nın Bolivya'nın AB ile ne alakası var?”, Akşam, (February 13, 2011): 23 May 2011 http://www.aksam.com.tr/brezilyanin-bolivyanin-ab-ile-ne-alakasi-var--16884h.htm
Describing EU as the Christian Club shapes EU-Turkey relations agenda around identity issues. Turkey‟s different identity is celebrated and it is tried to be turned into an advantage: the “Muslim state” Turkey must be the part of it. 2.2.3. Discourses of Ahmet Davutoğlu Although Erdoğan and Ahmet Davutoğlu represent the same school of thought, there are some differences in their discourses. While Erdoğan put stress on the Islamic credentials, Davutoğlu highlights the Ottoman past of Turkey alongside with Islamic background. He is usually called as neo-Ottoman for his “embracing Ottoman State” stance. His “multi-dimensional foreign policy” and “zero problem with neighbors” came to be very influential and created various interpretations, one of the most popular ones being „axis of Turkey is shifted to East‟. He is a professor in international relations, he published several books which throw light on his foreign policy doctrine. A special emphasis will be given to “Strategic Depth”, the book which is the most famous one in among his works. First of all, he thinks that Turkey‟s culture is different from those of Europe or USA. He uses the term “counter civilization” to refer to West, let alone trying to prove the commonalities of West and Turkey. The meaning is so explicit that doing discourse analysis is not pretty much needed. “With its dynamic characteristics, Turkish political culture differentiates from the political culture of Western Europe and American societies to a great extent. […] The most important factor that differentiates political culture in Turkey from different societies is that, this country has been the center of a civilization that had established unique and long-lasting political order which embraced the main intersection points. The effect of loosing this front-line relationship between this central civilization and the countercivilization [sic] affected the sociopsychological infrastructure, which makes up the political culture. Since Tanzimat, the attempts of the
political elite to construct a new political structure convulsed all of the societies in the Ottoman geography.” 104
He defines the effect of the Kemalist reforms and the Westernization policies that have been carried out as the „radical civilizational transformation‟. According to him, “suppress of creating a new political culture radical breakthrough from the historical continuity and political identity.” Glorifying the common history is regarded as widespread practice in consolidating a new identity in nationalism studies. He poses not an exception to that. He glorifies the Ottoman past and mentions that the only way to survive on itself is embracing the history, namely reconciling with its roots. He criticizes the Western-oriented elite approaches for creating a gap between the society and state elites and for missed opportunities during the past 50 years to redirect Turkish foreign policy105 towards the geo-cultural depth. Referring to the top-down modernization reforms, he states that “considering the society as a mass that can change with a single command in any time, heading towards a one-dimensional dogmatism is nothing but neo-orientalist approach.”106 He continues that EU relations must be evaluated within this civilizational interaction. With his words, he presents that Turkey will act within the frame shaped by identity paradigms. By this way, Turkey shows her cards to EU, within the principle of respecting and preserving diversity. In Davutoğlu‟s view, EU aims to leave Turkey in ambiguity and the issues of human rights, Cyprus, Aegean Sea and economic parameters are just the pretexts of this ambiguity
Ahmet Davutoğlu, Stratejik Derinlik: Türkiye‟nin Uluslararası Konumu, (Istanbul:Küre Yayınları, 2001:2011), p.81 105 Alexander Murinson, “The Strategic Depth Doctrine of Turkish Foreign Policy”, Middle Eastern Studies, 42:6 (November 2006) pp.945-964, 106 Ahmet Davutoğlu, Stratejik Derinlik, p.541
strategy. 107 Accepting the problems in the abovementioned issues, he believes that the identical dimension of Turkey-EU relations is the most decisive aspect. The main thesis of the „Strategic Depth Doctrine‟ is that Turkey will gain the „centralstate‟ position with its geographical and historical depth. He constantly put emphasis of Turkey‟s distinct characteristics which is stemmed from its giant history and culture. He uses the term of “geopolitical depth” many times throughout the book to refer to the state‟s “continuity of the place” and the “mutual interaction within its strategic sphere.”108 With the “continuity of place”, he attributes the Ottoman geography and mentions that without the timeplace consciousness, a state cannot outshine. 109 With his doctrine; Turkey should act as the pivot in Balkans, Caucasus, Black Sea, Middle East, Mediterranean, Caspian Sea and Gulf States. Ottoman Empire‟s legacy is the geographical depth that Turkey needs to engage in the active politics in the neighborhood. He thinks that taking active role in the regions once under the Ottoman rule, is the moral responsibility of today‟s Turkey. “One of the main tenets of being a historical center for Turkey is that it was established on the legacy of the Ottomans, which was one of the eight states in the 20th century that embodied numerous geopolitical, geo-economic and geo-cultural elements within a single, large scale political unit (empire). Geopolitical, geo-economic and geo-cultural fragmentations that occurred during the dissolutions of such large units forced the countries which were formerly the central pieces of those political structures, to assume a serious historical responsibility and deal with the challenges that followed.” 110 Apart from responsibility, he claims that there is an inherent Ottoman thinking in the each individual of the Turkish society. In one of his interviews, he claims that “Turkish intellectuals,
even those who are strongly committed to the Westernization as the prevalent ideology, there is a hidden Ottoman living inside.” 111 One of the main arguments of Davutoğlu is the Islamic credentials of Turkey and the vision of Islamic civilization. He thinks that the Muslim world, which became the intersectional arena of these two phenomena, civilizational revival and strategic competition, becomes the focal point in international relations. He grounds his civilization vision on Huntington‟s Clash of Civilizations thesis and puts forward that Turkey, having Islamic cultural heritage, can be the bridge in this chaotic environment. “Possessing the most important elements of old humanity knowledge, blessed with the most refined cultural heritage of Islamic civilization and constituting a serious inter-civilizational interaction area, Turkey should use this position to pioneer a new civilizational opening.” 112 In other words, Turkey is part of the Islamic civilization and this character of Turkey should go for its own peculiarities, without trying to be part of another civilization, which is West. While referring to Islamic civilization and Western civilization as two different civilizations like Huntington, he thinks that the basins that are in danger of annihilation by Western civilization should come closer. It is required to avoid the Western hegemony that will address only one dimension to the humankind and narrows the human horizon. 113 It is acquired that Turkey, which has been trying to prove that she is Western from its establishment to present day, now distinct itself from Western civilization, regard the West with disfavor and claims that it does not fulfill all the complex requirements of the mankind. Another point that is also seen in Davutoğlu‟s speeches is to see the Islamic civilization as the homogeneous and unchangeable entities, ignoring the clashes between Sunnis, Shiites and Muslim Kurds. He emphasizes the religious aspect of the civilization and calls the region
which makes up Turkey‟s geographical depth as “the integral part of the Islamic civilization.”114 Due to his attempts on eliminating the differences and projecting Islamic civilization as a single integral body, Murinson claims that Davutoğlu substitutes „ummah‟, a term with religious connotations, by the more neutral term „Islamic civilization‟ 115. According to Davutoğlu, the issue of Karabakh and the invasion of Azeri lands by Armenian forces is the only real cultural/civilizational clash in this region”. 116 Davutoğlu referred Quran as the tool that shapes societies‟ behavior patterns and elites‟ mind. “Think about that; today a Bosnian reads Quran, so does a Turk, a Malaysian and a Tanzanian”. Thereby, there occurs common consciousness and common knowledge sphere. […] In that sense, Islam civilization is the one that resisted against West for the first time and extensively.”117 It means that Turkey and the Islamic countries like Bosnia, Malaysia and Tanzania are in the same geo-cultural sphere because Islam unifies them under the same umbrella and creates the common identity. Besides, despite mentioning the similarities, Islamic states are positioned against the Western states, preserving their own characteristics. He does not cast doubt on the constructive nature of the identities and explicitly says that “we need to construct a new identity118, new philosophical ground to conform to the new modernization period that is not in the monopoly of the Europeans anymore. 119 To sum up, Davutoğlu puts emphasis on the different identities of Turkey and Europe and treats the relations in a civilizational perspective. He criticizes Westernization reforms as they created a break from the geographical and historical depth of Turkey. He underlines the 114
Ahmet Davutoglu, “The Clash of Interests: An Explanation of the World (Dis)Order”, Perceptions: Journal of International Aﬀairs, 2:4 (Dec 1997–Feb 1998), p.1 115 Alexander Murinson, “The Strategic Depth Doctrine of Turkish Foreign Policy” Middle Eastern Studies, 42:6 (November 2006), p.949 116 Ibid, p.949 117 Davutoğlu, Küresel Bunalım, p.226 118 Davutoğlu, Stratejik Derinlik, p.92 119 “Davutoğlu: Artık Avrupa Merkezli Kültür Hayatı Yok [There Exists No European-centered Cultural Life Anymore]”, Doğan Haber Ajansı, (June,19 2010): 3 March 2011 http://www.dha.com.tr/haberdetay.asp?tarih=21.05.2011&Newsid=36862&Categoryid=2
Ottoman heritage that Turkey cannot escape and he undertakes the responsibility stemmed from the Ottoman background. Last but not least, he draws attention to the Islamic culture as the soft power of the modern Turkish state.
Chapter 3 Second Image - State Level
Second image is the level that the reasons of the shift in the identity projection are going to be examined in within the state. The situation inside Turkey that has effect on the identical change will be examined in three headings: Embracing different modernities, Euro-skepticism and the economic improvement. After mentioning the pillars within state, the state institutions that reflect shift in the Turkey‟s Western identity will be analyzed based on the interviews and the acts of them. The institutions that are examined are Secretariat General for EU Affairs (SGEU), Yunus Emre Institution and the Presidency of Turks Abroad and Related Communities. In the post- Helsinki period, Turkey has undergone many reforms with regard to the democratization. Civil and political rights, economic and social liberties, cultural rights and minority rights, civil-military relations, judiciary and public administration are some areas that the reforms took place. The Europeanization reforms in Turkey and the prevalence of the “unity in diversity” mentality inside the EU are the products of the same line of thought. The “unity in diversity” discourse gained popularity within EU thanks to Roman Prodi, the
President of the European Commission between 1999 and 2004. 120 Leaving the “minority” word aside, EU started to use “cultural differences” instead. 121 Turkey, implementing democratization reforms inside and act upon the EU school of thought at the same time, affected from the relatively liberal political environment. The woman, ethno-cultural, religious movements have, definitely, effected Turkey and bring the inherent argument to light. In Turkish state level, Kurdish nationalism appears as one of the facts of the emergence of the different voices. Started in 1980s, Kurdish nationalism gained pace in 1990s and became one of the striking examples of piercing the homogeneity of Turkish political culture. Alawite movement of 1990s and the “2nd republican” debates in 1990s provide similar examples. 122 As mentioned before, there has always been a tension with the seculars and the Islamist. Throughout the Turkish modern history, military-secular elite had continued to be the backbone of the Republic. Whereas this time, more democratic Turkey ignored the order coming from the coup d‟états and the Islamists voices started to be heard higher. All of them posed a threat to the homogenous state notion that traces back to Millet system in Ottoman123. The products of Millet system was successful in creating society of „Turk-Muslim-Sunni‟ triangle and is still observed in contemporary Turkey. Evolving from such political culture, the rise of the new voices was a new phenomenon in Turkey. With the deviancies in the „proper Turk‟ perception, the idea of the existence of different identities opened the way to think about the Western
Tenth President of the European Commission Romano Prodi has widely contributed to the “unity in diversity” discourse. One example is that in 2004, Prodi initiated a “Reflection Group” to investigate Europe‟s spiritual and cultural dimension and commonalities. The report concluded that Europe is not all about border and there are no limits. Fo the report: Reflection Group:Kurt Biedenkopf,Bronislaw Geremek and Krzysztof Michalski, “The Spiritual and Cultural Dimension of Europe: Concluding Remarks”,European Commission (Brussels:2004): 18 April 2011 http://cordis.europa.eu/documents/documentlibrary/104214451EN6.pdf; Romano Prodi, Europe: A Family Governed by Common Rules, Joint Seim and Senate Commissions on European Integration, Foreign Affairs and EU Law: Speech 01/110 (Warsaw: March 2001) 121 Ayhan Kaya and Ayşe Tecmen, “Turkish Modernity: A Continuous Journey of Europeanization,” FP7 Project entitled Identities and Modernities in Europe (IME), WP4 „The state of the art: various paths to modernity‟ Turkish Case report, 2010,p.20 http://fass.kingston.ac.uk/public/ime/ 122 Ibid., p.17 123 Shaw descirbes Millet system as “the division of the society into communities along religious lines with each individual or group belonging to one millet or another according to religious affiliation.” See: Stanford J. Shaw, History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern Turkey, Vol.I. (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1976), p.151
identity of Turkey. In the Turkish history, the debate between the seculars and the Islamists/conservatists has always been a thorny issue. Having these features at the background, the Western type of modernization is started to be questioned. The modernization used to be perceived as the linear process that is the product of West. When the term „modernization‟ is used, there was no need to mention the character of the process; it was inevitably perceived as the Western modernization. However, the Western monopoly, namely the European and later on the American hegemony, started to be rethought, in the light of the celebrating differences. Parallel with the developments and academic accumulation 124 in the international arena, Turkey started to embrace the idea of „multiple modernities‟. Just like the sui generis character of Chinese, Japanese modernization, Turkey started to pose a modernization of her own, with her distinct characteristics. The idea of various modernities is welcomed in Turkey by the abovementioned groups, especially conservatists who feel themselves not conforming to the cultural practices of the Western lifestyles. Multiple interpretations of modernity other than of West pave the way for the acceleration of „Turkish exceptionalism‟. Among other things, it is ironic that the democratization wave that is very much related to the Helsinki, Copenhagen and Amsterdam Summits lead to the rise of the different voices and the “cultural diversity” notion; and in the present situation, the outputs of the Europeanization reforms lead – or at least effected strongly- to the differentiation from Europe. Another aspect that should be dealt in the state level is the Euro-skepticism of Turkey. Before talking about the today‟s circumstances that paved the way for casting doubt on EU, “Sevres Syndrome” needed to be well understood. Sevres Syndrome is the perception that Turkey is encircled with enemies whom try to divide up the country. This manner is named 124
S.N. Eisenstadt, Comparative Civilizations, Multiple Modernities (Netherlands:Koninklijke,2003); Robert W. Hefner, Multiple Modernities: Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism in a Globalizing Age, Annual Review of Anthropology, Vol. 27, (1998), pp. 83-104; Mary E. John, “Alternate Modernities?: Reservations and Women's Movement in 20th Century India” Economic and Political Weekly, 35: 43/44 (October -November , 2000), pp. 322-382; Fuat Keyman and Ahmet İçduygu, “Globalization, Civil Society and Citizenship in Turkey: Actors, Boundaries and Discourses”, Citizenship Studies, 7: 2 (2003) p.219-234
after the Treaty of Sevres, signed by Allied powers and Ottoman Empire in 1920. According to the treaty, the Ottoman Empire was to be divided between Britain, France, Armenia and Greece. The Sévres Treaty has not been implemented and replaced by the Lausanne Peace Treaty after the 1923 Independence War. However, its effects lasted in the social psyche for so long and the Sevres Syndrome is kept alive to today. There are several reasons for the Sévres Syndrome to arouse in the EU accession period. One of the main issues that trigger the Euro-skepticism is the harsh oppositions of some EU member states, i.e. France, Germany, Austria, against Turkish membership. Former French President Valéry Giscard d‟Estang continuously stated that “Turkey entry would destroy EU”.125 His opposition is derived neither derived from the deficiencies in human rights or economy, nor the foreign policy deadlocks. His claims are based on identical differences and argue that to have a European patriotism, there needs to be a strong European identity which is, in his view, based on the cultural richness of Ancient Greece and Rome, and the innovative and creative soul of Renaissance. His key argument here is that Turkey has never shared any of those experiences; therefore Turkey‟s inclusion will change the structure of the European Project.126 Former Interior Minister and today‟s President of France Nicholas Sarkozy also thinks that Turkey is an Asian state and cannot be part of EU because Turkey is a Muslim country.127 Leaving changing his stance after becoming president, he even toughened his opposition to Turkey‟s membership and to the Muslim world in general. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also repeatedly said that Turkey is not suitable for EU 128 and put forward the „privileged partnership‟ option rather than full membership. Moreover, the public opinion in EU to membership of Turkey has fallen steadily. Germany, France, Austria, Denmark and 125
“Turkey entry would destroy EU”, BBC News, (November,8 2002): 5 April 2011, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/2420697.stm 126 “AB Türkiye‟ye Hazır Değil” [The EU Is Not Ready for Turkey], Radikal, (December,13 2004): 30 March 2011 (originally published in Der Standard) http://www.radikal.com.tr/haber.php?haberno=137138 127 Nicholas Sarkozy, Interview with by Charlie Rose, (July,13 2007): 30 March 2011 http://www.charlierose.com/view/interview/8593 128 “Turkey's EU bid overshadows Angela Merkel visit”, BBC News (March, 29 2011): 30 March 2011 http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/8592170.stm
Holland are the countries that the support for the Turkey‟s membership is in minimum degrees. According to the surveys of Transatlantic Trends, the project German Marshall Fund of US, the public opinion of EU member states has been declining from 2005 129. According to the recent survey, 22% of the European public see Turkish EU as positive. When it came to shared values, only 32% of the European public think that Turkey had enough values in common with the West.130 In return, Turks also became less enthusiastic about the EU membership. From 2004 to 2008, it is observed that there is a steady decline in the ratios of the Turkish people who see the Turkey‟s EU membership as “positive”. 131 Some other elements that triggered “Euroscepticism, nationalism and parochialism in Turkey” are “the disapproving sentiments towards the American occupation of Iraq, the limitations on national sovereignty posed by the EU integration, the high tide of the 90th anniversary of the Armenian “deportation”/“genocide” among the Armenian diaspora (2005), the “risk of recognition” of Southern Cyprus by Turkey for the sake of the EU integration and Israel‟s attacks on Lebanon in 2006.”132 Not surprisingly, the anti-Turkey stance of the member states and the Turkish public opinion affected Turkey‟s policies towards EU. As a reaction against the ones who are not in favour of the Turkey‟s membership, Turkey developed a defensive attitude and declared many times that it would be disadvantageous for EU, not for Turkey. In one of his speeches, when Erdoğan is asked about Sarkozy‟s attitude, he replied that Turkey would go on her own path, if
Project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States measures broad public opinion in the United States, Turkey, and 11 European Union countries. The results are taken from: Tarık Oğuzlu and Mustafa Kibaroğlu, “Is the Westernization Process Losing Pace in Turkey: Who‟s to Blame?” Turkish Studies 10:4 (December 2009) p.590 130 “Survey: Leaders More Optimistic on Transatlantic Relations Than General Public”, Transatlantic Trends, (March,15 2011): 30 April 2011 http://trends.gmfus.org/?page_id=2971 131 Delegation of European Commission to Turkey, “Turkey National Report”, Eurobarometer, (Spring 2008) http://www.avrupa.info.tr/News_Archieve/july_08,04july2008.html 132 Ziya Öniş “Turkish Modernization and Challenges for the New Europe,” Perceptions (Autumn:2004), p.12
EU does not want Turkey. 133 Similarly, Chief Negotiator Egemen Bağış stated that “Turkey is not, anymore, a country to beg in front of the EU.”134 Turkey, this time, does not try to prove that she is European, but declares that EU would be the loser without Turkey. Erdoğan‟s top adviser İbrahim Kalın also mentioned “It would not be the end of the world for Turkey if the EU does not accept Turkey into the Union. However, if Europe turns into a continent without tolerance, then it would be the eventual loser,” 135 Economic improvement of Turkey appears as another factor in the Turkey‟s shift which is related with both internal dynamics and external relations. Starting from the internal dynamics, one can say that the increasing prosperity within Anatolia effected the Turkey experienced uninterrupted economic growth since 2002. Due to the growth in economy, the foreign investment rates increased to a high degree. In his analysis in 2008, O. Lesser stated “High growth has been accompanied and supported by dramatic increases in foreign investment of all kinds. The revival of Turkey‟s real economy, and especially the fortunes of small- and medium-sized enterprises in the years since 2000-2001, has played a role in the social transformation of the country, fueling prosperity in Anatolia, and changing patterns of power and influence in diverse sectors.” Starting with the internal dynamics, one can state that the economic flourish in Anatolia has effect upon the Turkish policy. The increase in the production rates, employment capacity and the capital accumulation in Anatolian cities led to the emergence of a new bourgeoisie class, popularly called „Anatolian tigers‟.136 With the rise of the Anatolian tigers, their political power started to be felt. TÜSIAD, once believed to be the beholder of the economic power and posses
“Sarkozy's Approach To Turkey Very Wrong, Erdoğan Says”, Turkish NY (February,25 2011): 30 April 2011 http://www.turkishny.com/english-news/5-english-news/48362-sarkozys-approach-to-turkey-very-wrong-erdogansays 134 “Bağış‟tan Önemli Açıklama”, Akşam, (February,3 2011): 30 April 2011 http://www.haberturk.com/dunya/haber/597823-salya-sumuk-aglama-hakkiniz-yok135 “Turkey To Continue EU Membership Process With Determination, Adviser Says”, Turkish NY, (February,01 2011): 30 April 2011 http://www.turkishny.com/english-news/5-english-news/46448-turkey-to-continue-eu-membership-process-withdetermination-adviser-says 136 Mehmet Şahin, “ „Anadolu Kaplanları‟ Türkiye‟yi Orta Doğu ve Afrika‟da Etkin Kılıyor” Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies http://www.orsam.org.tr/tr/trUploads/Yazilar/Dosyalar/201034_ANADOLU_K..pdf
the political influence on its own, no longer was the monopoly. The Anatolian businessmen are regarded as the „emerging new middle class‟ of Turkey and the pillar of urbanization. Taken the conservative character of the „emerging new middle class‟ into the consideration, their power to influence the politics became an advantage for AKP. By this way, “the electoral support of the party does not include only poor and excluded segments of society, but also, and more importantly, the new conservative middle classes, empowered and enriched by the process of Islamic resurgence.”137 Economic stability in Turkey also led to good relations within its neighborhood. In last ten years, Turkey used the advantage of the growing economies of Eastern states138 and multiplied its exports to the Middle Eastern countries with ten in eight years. In 2000, Turkey‟s export rates were 2.573 billion dollar and increased to 25.430 billion dollars in 2008. 139 Although the trade rates are negatively affected from the recent economic crisis, Turkey carries on with the fruitful economic relations with the growing Middle East countries, in which she enjoys geographical proximity and historical ties. Furthermore, the economical aspect of the Turkish foreign policy laid pragmatic grounds for the detaching from West. The hope was that Turkey‟s capability to materialize its economic development at home as well as to reach out to her neighborhood would become much easier if Turkey defined herself as a Eurasian country rather than to be the one whose number one foreign policy interest is to join the EU.140
Keyman, “Modernization, Globalization and Democratization in Turkey: The AKP Experience and its Limits”, Constellations 17:2 (2010), p.324 138 When we look at the aftermath of the global economic crisis, Middle East is the least affected region in the world. It also is the region that had the fastest recovery rates. Middle East experienced GNP growths of 4.2% in 2008, and -with only 1% drop- 3.2% in 2009. According to World Bank data, the region is expected to quickly attain the pre-crisis levels of GNP growth with an estimated 4.0% in 2010, 4.3 in 2011 and 4.5% in 2012. Middle East's performance during and after the crisis draws a positive profile in comparison to Europe which shrinked 9% and Central Asia.. For more information see: Regional detailed forecasts, World Bank http://web.worldbank.org/external/default/main?contentMDK=20381640&menuPK=659183&theSitePK=659149 &pagePK=2470434&piPK=2470429 139 T.C Başbakanlık Dış Ticaret Müsteşarlığı, İhracat Kayıt Rakamları, Arşiv http://www.dtm.gov.tr/dtmweb/index.cfm?action=ihrkayit&yayinID=2415&icerikID=2584&dil=TR 140 Joshua W. Walker, “Learning Strategic Depth: Implications of Turkey‟s New Foreign Policy Doctrine,” Insight Turkey, 9:3 (2007), pp. 32–47
To sum up, three factors with many subtitles are examined to clarify the Turkey‟s position in identity projection. One is the embracing the different modernities in the light of the rise of different voices and the second is the revival of the inherent Euro-skepticism. Both factors are reflections of the Turkish political culture and the historical perception to today‟s policies. The third one is the rediscovery of the Balkans and especially Middle Eastern region due to the economic improvements. Turkish case provides an example of the Waltz‟s argument that the political culture and economic structure affects how states act.
3.1. Secretariat General for EU Affairs Secretariat General for EU Affairs (SGEU) is established in 2000 with the aim of providing internal coordination between public institutions in accordance with the programs for the preparation of Turkey‟s membership to EU. Turkey‟s Communication Strategy for EU (CSEU) is prepared by Secretariat General for EU Affairs. This section will examine “EU Communication Strategy 2010” and “EU Strategy for Turkey‟s Accession” reports with respect to the identity reflection. SGEU is the institution that is responsible for EU affairs and the EU membership is its ultimate aim. What is meant is that the institution‟s stance and the carried activities are unquestionably pro-European. Thus, the pro-European practices will not be paid attention. Instead, the remarkable points that clarifies Turkey‟s altered attitude will be put emphasis in the CSEU. CSEU put forward the two-dimensioned strategy: Explaining Turkey to EU and explaining EU to Turkey. Being aware of the Turkish-skepticism in Europe and the Euroskepticism in Turkey, CSEU aims to eliminate the prejudices of both sides. The CSEU provides comprehensible and practical agenda that includes state institutions, embassies, thinktanks, NGOs, civil society, academics, students, conventional and social media. One of the
main principles in the CSEU is to put more emphasis on the states which do not in favor of the Turkey‟s membership, namely France, Germany, Austria, Denmark and Holland. 141 Moreover, as indicated in the CSEU, SGEU acts promptly to repulse the “defamatory campaigns” carried out in the media and internet. CSEU identified some “general messages” which should be delivered to EU institutions and the public opinions. Two of the messages aim to project Turkey‟s European identity: Turkey sharing the same values with Europe and the Turkey‟s location in the European system. Other five messages that have relevance with the identity discourse reveal the Turkey‟s importance regarding the civilizational context and the benefits that Turkey can provide with her identity. Some of them are “our role in Alliance of Civilizations, being the cradle of the civilizations and religions, being bridge between cultures, being a model for the cohabitate of different cultures, history of peace and stability that will be generated together”.142 In order to give the messages, CSEU is determined to utilize all the media tools with a specific emphasis on social networks. With instant updates, the Secretariat is quite successful in using Facebook, Twitter and blogs.143 The strategy calls for creating a “Turkey brand” in the advertisement form including mottos and catchwords.144 CSEU also seek students support to EU and put emphasis on student participation in EU affairs. Combining the two aims, SGEU implemented “The Competition of Young Communicators on the Path to the EU” among university students. It is worth mentioning that the winner of the television category is called “Our life is a la Turca , its standard is Europe (Hayatımız Alaturka, Standardı Avrupa)”.
While the advertisement
Secretariat General for European Union, “Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği İletişim Stratejisi” [Turkey‟s Communication Strategy of EU] (Ankara: Ocak 2010), p.1 http://www.abgs.gov.tr/files/strateji/abis_tr1.pdf 142 Ibid, p.6 143 Egemen Bağış has a personal Twitter account. There is a Facebook account of SGEU. The news are frequently updated. See: http://twitter.com/#!/Egemen_Bagis ; http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001694267128 144 Secretariat General for European Union, “Türkiye‟nin Avrupa Birliği İletişim Stratejisi” [Turkey‟s Communication Strategy of EU] (Ankara: Ocak 2010), p.8
demonstrates the advantages of EU membership to Turkey, it indicates the contrasts between Turkish customs and European way of living, with the a la Turca music at the background.145 Another important point in the strategy is that the circulation of Turkish art that reflects the different aspects of Turkish culture, to EU countries. Furthermore, there is an emphasis of “Ankara Criteria” in place of “Copenhagen Criteria”. By Ankara Criteria, it is meant that the democratization process will continue by all means, regardless of the ruptures in the process that stems from the EU states. Erdoğan uses “Ankara Criteria” to mention that Turkey is determined to imply the reforms with or without Europe146, meaning that Turkey is not making the changes because EU wants to, but for the good of her people with her own will. Similar attitude is observed in the document of “EU Strategy for Turkey‟s Accession”. It is stated that the important thing is the outcomes (reaching the contemporary standards and expansion of the rights and freedoms) of the EU accession process147, meaning that EU membership is not a sine qua non. In the document, there is an apparent effort to take the control of the EU process. It is stated that Turkey will act in accordance with her priorities regardless of the blocked, not opened or suspended chapters.148 By this way “the issues that are troublesome to Turkey can be postponed while the important issues for Turkey can be given priority.” In several items, the same point is exerted. “The time and speed period determined by EU will be reversed and Turkey will keep the control. Hereby, Turkey, by herself, will determine the future of the accession process in line with her own preferences and
“Hayatımız Alaturka, Standardı Avrupa”, Winner of the Competition of Young Communicators on the Path to the EU, 3 April 2011, http://www.abgs.gov.tr/files/Bas%C4%B1nMusavirlik/haberler/Video/tv_hayatimiz_alaturka_standardi_avrupa.w mv 146 “Erdoğan AB üyelerine seslendi:„Önümüzü keserseniz, Ankara kriterleri ile yolumuza devam ederiz‟” Turkish Journal, (December 23, 2006): 9 April 2011 http://www.turkishjournal.com/i.php?newsid=240 147 Secretariat General for European Union, “Türkiye‟nin Katılım Süreci için Avrupa Birliği Stratejisi” [Turkey‟s EU Strategy for Accession Period] (Ankara: December 2010), p.1 http://www.abgs.gov.tr/files/strateji/yabs_tr1.pdf 148 Ibid., p.2
priorities.[sic]”149 The stress on Turkey‟s control in EU affairs shows that, SGEU, in line with Erdoğan and Davutoğlu, does not want passive Turkey anymore. Turkey should be active in front of EU, take the control and lead the process instead of one-dimensional instructions coming from EU. Once more, it should be stated that being the driving force of EU Affairs, the aim of SGEU‟s establishment is to make Turkey an EU member as soon as possible. Thus, they carry out various activities and give messages favoring EU. In doing so, the modernization aspect and the benefits that EU membership would bring are mentioned. Nevertheless, it is important to discern that even in the SGEU, the elements that reveal the different characteristics of Turkey are present in the both communication and accession strategies. Turkey‟s role in bridging Islam and West is mentioned. Turkey‟s will to pass through the reform process is declared but then, it is stated that Turkey would apply reforms because she wants to, not with the dictate of EU. Turkey‟s determination to take the control and lead the EU process on her own is underlined. It means that Turkey will no longer wait for EU to take decisions but be an active player, like in the other spheres of foreign policy, with her own stance.
2.1. Yunus Emre Foundation and Institute Yunus Emre Foundation is established on 5 May 2007 as a state foundation. The foundation is named after prominent Turkish poet and Sufi who lived in 13th century. The foundation worth examining as it reflects the features of current identity policy. In this section, Yunus Emre Institute, which is associated to the Foundation, will be introduced with regard to its aim, the places it operates and its activities. The institute is rather recently established and there is hardly any academic research on it. However, the institution publishes monthly bulletins about
the activities and includes the state leaders' speeches about the institute. Moreover, personally I have made an interview with the Chairman of the Institute Prof. Dr. Ali Fuat Bilkan. Thus, the website and the bulletins of the institutions alongside with the interview will be the sources of the analysis. Three featured points will be drawn attention: the international dimension of the introducing Turkish culture, the "various modernizations" aspect within the institution and the uniqueness of the Turkish culture with its possible contributions to the world culture. The purpose of the foundation is as follows: “The purpose of this Act is, to introduce Turkey, its cultural heritage, the Turkish language, culture and art, and enhance Turkey‟s friendship with other countries, increase cultural Exchange, in that regard to present domestic and foreign information and documents on Turkey to the benefit of the world, to serve those who wish to receive an education in the fields of Turkish language, culture and arts, to establish a Yunus Emre Research Institution in Turkey and a Yunus Emre Cultural Centre abroad….”150 The institute is thought to be the counterpart of British Council of Great British, Cervantes Institute of Spanish, Goethe Institute of German and alike. There have been suggestions both from the academy and from the political leaders regarding the need of such an institution for fifteen years or earlier.151 But the timing of the establishment is significant. It would not be wrong to say that the institution is the concrete outcome of the Turkey's recent foreign policy and its identical stance. The Chairman of the Institute Ali Fuat Bilkan also confirmed that the timing of the establishment is related with the Turkey's recent foreign policy arguments and Turkey's significant political stance in the international arena. 152 The founders of the board of trustees include President Abdullah Gül and the members of the board of trustees include Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu, Minister of Culture and Tourism Ertuğrul Günay. (The comity of consultants of the foundation includes one representative of Presidency
Yunus Emre Institution, Yunus Emre Foundation Law, Law No. 5653, Article 1 http://www.yunusemreenstitusu.org/icerik_orta.aspx?id=17 151 Ali Fuat Bilkan, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: TOBB ETU, 20 April 2011 152 Ibid
of Religious Affairs alongside with the members of board of trustees.) Thus, it is natural to reflect the state's identity policies. In Davutoğlu's words, one of the aim of the Yunus Emre Institute is to "bringing our national culture together with the universal culture and increase the activeness of the national culture the universal culture." It is needed because "in history not many nation, like ours, is interacted with different cultures and different civilizations, sometimes became the agent of these civilizations and sometimes make up big cultural blends with these civilizations..."153 He explains the second purpose of the institute as follows:
"Today, the foreign policy is not only carried out by diplomacy; but is covered with cultural, economical and commercial ties. In this context, the second purpose of the institution is "to universalize Turkish, preserve Turkish cultural properties, spread Turkish culture to every generation of world. This will enable us to place our historical and cultural accumulation to today's strategy." 154 The choice of the places of the Yunus Emre Cultural Centers abroad is significant. First five centers are opened in the "geographical basin" of Turkey. To list them in the order; first one opened in Bosnia-Herzegovina, second one in Albania, third in Egypt, fourth in Macedonia and the fifth one opened in Kazakhstan. After the first tier, Poland, Syria, Britain, Japan and Belgium became the countries with Yunus Emre Cultural Centers. The next cultural center to be opened will be in Peru, Lima. The places are not selected randomly. As stated, the first tier of the centers puts emphasis on the common cultural values and in this respect is related with the inherent neo-Ottoman approach. Both Davutoğlu and Bilkan stated that the opening of the first cultural center in Sarajevo is not a coincidence. In the interview, Bilkan answered the question why some places are given priorities as follows:
"It is because Bosnia-Herzegovina is the natural extension of our cultural history and cultural geography. It is like a person who embeds
Ahmet Davutoğlu, Yunus Emre Institute Opening Speech, Yunus Emre Bulletin, 1:1, (September 2009), p.7 Ibid
himself under the soil and takes out his hand from far away. It is the part of the body. It is the part of the cultural borders."155 Naming the Ottoman geography as the natural cultural boundaries is kind of a new phenomenon that found a place in today's Turkish foreign policy. Turkey no longer defines itself solely as a Western country, but also reconstructs its position as a regional leader. Bilkan continues his words with quotes from Davutoğlu, saying "Turkey is a Caucasian country, Black Sea country, Central Asia country, Middle Eastern country, Balkan country, Mediterranean country and a European country. Thus, it is actually difficult to decide where to begin." 156 While the priority is given to states where Turkey is thought to have cultural, historical ties and responsibilities, Yunus Emre Institution does not overlook big cities that can be counted as world culture centers. So, second point in the selection of Yunus Emre Cultural Centers is to take place in the world powers and their cultural hubs; like London, Paris, Brussels, New York and alike. 157 Apart from that, the institution attaches importance to the places which are not familiar with Turkish culture at all. The next destinations being Peru, Estonia, Belarus is the reflection of the idea of Turkey's will to expand its culture universally in order to make them meet the Turkish culture. This idea is not limited with Turkey's region or nor with the places with high number of Turkish people living in. Bilkan explains that, the institution does not only address the Turkish communities abroad, kindreds or the Islamic geography. They have already known Turkish culture with its cuisine, with recent Turkish soap operas, with agreements of visa eliminations. He adds that the institution meets the demands from various universities abroad to open Yunus Emre Cultural Center under their organization. Thus, the cultural centers
Ali Fuat Bilkan, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: TOBB Economy and Technology University, 20 April 2011 156 Ibid 157 Ibid
operate firstly in "our own cultural geography" 158; then, in the big culture cities, and finally in the places which are not familiar with the Turkish culture.
Coming to the activities of the cultural centers abroad, it is found that traditional Turkish culture is dominant rather than the contemporary Turkish art. For instance; art of paper marbling (ebru), calligraphy (hat) and gilding (tezhip) exhibitions are organized. Photographs of Mevlana exhibition, Semazen and Mevlevi activities exhibitions took place. The 8500 years history of Istanbul was introduced. Such activities seem to reveal that the cultural centers put emphasis on Islamic-Ottoman heritage, apart from the contemporary Turkish art. However, there are also some activities regarding the contemporary Turkish cinema for example. "The activities differ from place to place, even from city to city", says Bilkan when he was asked about the dominant sphere of activities. "We consider the demands of different countries and even cities in one country. To illustrate, the activities may target Roman minority in Bucharest while the needs of Turkish minority are considered in Constanta." He continues that as Albania and Bosnia Herzegovina posses the common cultural values with us, revealing the common elements matter; while in Croatia activities related with modern Turkish culture is put emphasis. In this context, in the former Ottoman geography, in Turkic states, in the near neighbor; the commonalities between Turkish culture and the country in question are come into prominence. However, in the big metropolises and other European cities, Turkish culture is just promoted, rather than accentuating commonalities.
Apart from introducing Turkish folk, one of the main tenets of the institute is teaching Turkish language. Under the organization body, there established a separate body for the Turkish education for foreigners and has launched a Turkish Profiency Exam (TYS) as the counterpart of TOEFL or DELE. The purpose of YETEM (Yunus Emre Turkish Language
Education Center) is "to promote Turkish as a global language in foreign countries, develop course materials and tools and contribute to the promotional activities of Turkey in Turkish."159 YETEM also puts emphasis on expansion of Turkology studies alongside with the teaching Turkish practically. The main areas of activity of YETEM include teaching Ottoman language and arts of ebru and hat. Education of Ottoman language as part of a Turkish culture is, again, embracing Ottoman heritage. Teaching Ottoman language has a further dimension. With the abolition of the Arab alphabet in 1928, there occurred a rupture learning and teaching of Ottoman language -as aimed-. But now, this rupture is tried to be retrieved.
So far, aims, places and the activities of the institution are examined. Inferred from the interview from the head of the institution, from the bulletins and the information on website, three concepts can be regarded as the mindset behind the abovementioned actions. First one bases on the idea that "We are not modernized because of the Europeans." When asked about his comments on Huntington's statement that "Turkey which wants to go under a civilizational transform, is denied from the civilization that wants to be part of."160, Bilkan interpreted that EU is an entity with cultural and political aspects; but more significantly it is an economic entity. If Turkey cannot become a member of EU, this will not mean that Turkey cannot continue to be modernized. In his words:
"I am one of those who believe that EU issue is very much exaggerated. EU is perceived as a milestone. It is more of a economic cooperation club and if Turkey meets the conditions, it would get in. If not, she will not take part in there. However, Turkey has been adopting itself to norms of the contemporary world. It is not started with the establishment of the Republic. It started with Mahmud the second or before him.[...] Why such changes are experienced? Turkey has gone through many changes in order to provide an environment
Yunus Emre Institute, Yunus Emre Türkçe Eğitim ve Öğretim Merkezi http://www.yunusemreenstitusu.org/icerik_orta.aspx?tip=c3848b45 160 Samuel Huntington, Clash of Civilizations and the Remarking of World Order.(New York: Simon&Schuster, 1997), p.152
with more freedom to the people from different religions, languages, cultures and races."161 He also mentions that some rights that are provided to foreigners with Tanzimat, does not today exist in many Europeans states. He explains the difficulties in front of moving to some European city and the suffering in some European airports in order to show the contrasts between the Turkey's implementations regardful to humans of all over the world. By this way, it becomes clear that the one of assumptions of the institution is that Turkey would not lose anything from its modernization pace if she would not become a member of EU.
Second one is the notion that Turkish culture is not limited to one region or a specific geography. It is the mixture of various civilizations and cultures. In the opening speech of Yunus Emre Institute, Erdoğan stated:
"We are carriers of the country, of the history and of the heritage which has been amalgamating different cultures and different civilizations for thousands of years with its own culture."162 Similarly, Bilkan mentions that Turkish culture is the culture that is produced from the first era of the history and there is continuity in the production of culture. He means all the arts, literature, religion and way of livings throughout the history by culture; not a specific time period. Limiting the culture to a specific period of time; like pre-Ottoman or post-Ottoman or Republic Anatolian, is an ideological categorization. He tells that the essence of our civilization is formed by Seljuks. But he adds that these are just the periods that made up the Turkish culture at the end. He includes Mamluk, Safavid, Tamerlaine and Babür as part of the Turkish culture too. All in all, the prevailing vision appears to be that Turkish culture does not only have a regional dimension. It is thought to embrace many civilizations and is viewed as global
Ali Fuat Bilkan, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: TOBB ETU, 20 April 2011 R.Tayyip Erdoğan, Speech Delivered in the Opening of Yunus Emre Institute, Yunus Emre Bulletin, 1:1 (September 2009) ,p.4 162
matter. This attitude is parallel with the Turkish foreign policy that conduct Turkey's role as a global actor, as well as being the regional leader.
Third, there is an emphasis on the contributions of Turkish culture to the world culture and to the improvement of the dialogue between civilizations. Bilkan says "Turkey is a very significant model for Middle East" because of the cohabitation of the Islam on one hand and the modern life and freedom on the other. He gives examples of Turkish hospitality as one factor that paves the way for the break in the "us and others" distinction. He adds that clash of civilizations does not exist in the real world in the daily life of peoples but it is kind of a created project. Turkey's role in the Alliance of Civilizations project is highlighted with its historical structure that enables differences to live together. For example, an exhibition is going to be opened in Brussels about the non-Muslims in Turkey, their way of livings and religious rituals. This point is worth mentioning. The institution does not only seek to show how deep history Turks have, but also introduce the diversity via non-Muslims. By preserving and keeping diversity alive, the clash of civilizations can be avoided says Bilkan. Turkey is thought to be one of the pioneers to accomplish it. Apart from the clash of civilizations perspective, unique values of Turkish culture are perceived as the center of attraction to the globalized world where everyone lives in the same way, eat in the same restaurants, wear the same clothes.
To sum up, the time of the establishment of such an institute is not a coincidence. It is parallel to the recent Turkish foreign policy. Briefly, the aim is to introduce Turkish culture and abroad and teach Turkish to foreigners. The „geo-cultural basin‟ of Turkey, namely the Ottoman geography is given priority in the Yunus Emre Cultural Center places. The institution is aimed to act as one of the major sources of Turkey's soft power. The institution can be regarded as the proof of the changing attitude of Turkey in EU relations. However, it would be unfair to say that the institution acts according to the neo-Ottoman doctrine or religious tenets.
It does not ignore the Western side of Turkey. But the Western characteristics of Turkey are seen only one part of the story. European character is seen only one dimension of Turkey's deep culture. It would not be wrong to state that the institution has nothing to do with extracting commonalities with European culture. Rather, the commonalities with Balkan or Turkic states are featured. European character of Turkey is one of the strengths of the country; but greater features would not be attributed.
3.2. The Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad (Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı)
The Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad is established on 6 April 2010 and it is affiliated to the Minister of State Faruk Çelik. It is established in order to coordinate the Turkish citizens living abroad and to strengthen the ties with related communities. It operates under three committes: Consultancy Committee of Citizens Abroad (Yurtdışı Vatandaşlar Danışma Kurulu), Evaluation of Foreign Students Committee (Yabancı Öğrenci Değerlendirme Kurulu) and Cultural and Social Relations Coordination Committee (Kültürel ve Sosyal İlişkiler Eşgüdüm Değerlendirme Kurulu). There are six heads of departments, three of whose names are the same as the abovementioned committees. The aim and the areas of activities of the presidency will be briefly explained under these headings. The speeches of the President Kemal Yurtnaç, the web site of the presidency and the in-depth interviews which I have conducted with Vice President Gürsel Dönmez, Head of the Cultural and Social Relations Department Ramazan Çokçevik, Expert in Foreign Citizens Department Metin Atmaca and Experts in Cultural and Social Relations Department Ahmet Turali and Selim Öztürk will be the sources of the analysis.
First of all, the very idea of the establishment of such an institution and its timing needs to be paid attention. Although the idea to set up such a state institution has background, it is opened in 2010, when the arguments about „shift of axis of Turkey‟ were in its peak among academic circles, newspaper columnists and society. Paying such an importance to set up a new institution in order to collaborate with the Turks and the kindreds (soydaşlar) abroad seems that it is simply the reflection the outcome of Davutoğlu‟s foreign policy. He usually states: “We do not only have responsibility to 70 million citizens, but also we have a historical obligation to the lands that had carried out all kinds of concerns. We need to fulfill this obligation in our best”163 Similarly, it is the reflection of Erdoğan‟s speech, mentioned also above, in the opening of the Bishkek Embassy Kyrgyzstan: “As you know, in EU, there is an implementation called Schengen. If they implement this, we, as the brother states [sic] in Central Asia can implement such policy among ourselves.” 164 The abovementioned statement is not the first of its kind. A month before, when Erdoğan was in Kuwait and took initiatives for the visa elimination between Turkey and Kuwait, he had said “We are the ones who best understand us...We are sufficient to ourselves.(Biz bize yeteriz.) But first of all we have to take required steps as brother states 165.” Head of the Cultural and Social Relations Committee Ramazan Çokçevik thinks in line with Erdoğan. He says that it is needed to establish a „common customs basin‟ within the Middle Eastern and Central Asian states. He mentions that Schengen implementation took so long after the European Coal and Steel Foundation. Similarly, such implementation with the brother states of Turkey may took some
Ahmet Davutoğlu, Dışişleri Bakanlığı Görev Değişimi, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, (May,2 2009): 20 March 2011 http://www.mfa.gov.tr/devlet-bakani-ve-basabakan-yardimcisi-sayin-ali-babacan-ile-disisleri-bakani-sayinahmet-davutoglu_nun-devir-teslim-vesilesiyle.tr.mfa 164 “Brezilya'nın Bolivya'nın AB ile ne alakası var?”, Akşam, (February 13, 2011): 23 May 2011 http://www.aksam.com.tr/brezilyanin-bolivyanin-ab-ile-ne-alakasi-var--16884h.htm 165 “Erdoğan: Biz Bize Yeteriz”, Vatan Gazetesi, (January 12,2011): 20 March 2011 http://haber.gazetevatan.com/erdogan-biz-bize-yeteriz/352350/1/Haber
time, but it is doable and actually it is a must.166 In the regulation of the institution, it is written that the aim of the Department of Citizens Abroad is written as follows: “To raise consciousness about participating to the social life without loosing their own culture (öz kültürlerini kaybetmeden) to the citizens who live abroad or who expatriated […].”167 This is an important point to explore. For years, there were separate institutions for the Turkish citizens living abroad and there have not been a full-fledged body to deal with their problems. The problems of the Turkish immigrants have always been a discussion topic from all the parties: the immigrants, their state of origin and the host state. Living with their traditions and daily habits were seen kind of a failure of the immigrants. The need to adapt to the social life and live in conformity with the host state‟s habits was the dominant discourse. Now, again integrating the social life of the host country matters. But this time, “without loosing their own culture” discourse is dominant and this discourse has found place even in the legislation of the institution. President Yurtnaç‟s statements about the institution‟s will to enhance their feeling of belonging to Turkey168 is regarded as the confirmation of the abovementioned perspective. Another statement in the same article of the legislation is: “To carry out activities[…] in order to protect the Turkish citizens living abroad and those who are not citizens anymore from discrimination, assimilation and from xenophobia and to cooperate with the people and institutions who act for the same purpose”169
Ramazan Çokçevik, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, 5 May 2011 167 Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı Teşkilat ve Görevleri Hakkında Kanun, Madde 8/c http://www.ytb.gov.tr/Files/Document/5978-Sayili-Yurtdisi-Turkler-ve-Akraba-Topluluklar-Baskanligi-Teskilatve-Gorevleri-Hakkinda-Kanun.pdf 168 “Kemal Yurtnaç:'Lobiciliği Güçlendireceğiz'” Gündem, (May 05,2011): 6 May 2011 http://arsiv.gundem.be/go.php?go=3212303&do=details&return=summary&pg=1 169 Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı Teşkilat ve Görevleri Hakkında Kanun, Madde 8/d http://www.ytb.gov.tr/Files/Document/5978-Sayili-Yurtdisi-Turkler-ve-Akraba-Topluluklar-Baskanligi-Teskilatve-Gorevleri-Hakkinda-Kanun.pdf
The legislation and the statements of the Yurtnaç reveal that the state body is the institutionalized form of the lobbying activities. He explicitly tells that the institution is going to carry out activities to strengthen the lobbying. Non-governmental organizations are the major party in this project. He says that there are some organizations dealing with lobbying activities but he thinks that they are not effective and powerful enough since they remain as some disorganized voluntary organizations. In the end, the result of the activities should influence the decision mechanisms of the other states; such as the Armenian bill in USA.170 Çokçevik and Turali mention the same issue. “Our presidency undertakes the diaspora activities. NGOs that are trying to carry out Turkish diaspora activities are disconnected and disorganized. Our mission is to coordinate these bodies in order to use them effectively.” 171
The purposes of the Cultural and Social Relations Coordination Committee includes supporting and coordinating the activities of related individuals, NGOs and professional chambers in order to develop economic, social and cultural ties with kindreds and relative communities.172 Actually, acquired from to the interviews, the name of the department was thought to be “Kindreds and Relative Communities” at first. Then, faced with criticisms about using the word “kindred”, the name is changed to Cultural and Social Relations Coordination Committee. However, the purpose and the activities remained the same; the department deals with “kindreds” abroad. When Çokçevik is asked more to comment on the specific activities of the Cultural and Social Relations Department, he refrains from telling and says that most of their works are confidential.
Kemal Yurtnaç:'Lobiciliği Güçlendireceğiz'” Gündem, (May 05,2011): 6 May 2011 http://arsiv.gundem.be/go.php?go=3212303&do=details&return=summary&pg=1 171 Ramazan Çokçevik, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, 5 May 2011 172 Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı Teşkilat ve Görevleri Hakkında Kanun, Kültüre ve Sosyal İlişkiler Daire Başkanlığı, Madda 9/1(a) http://www.ytb.gov.tr/Files/Document/5978-Sayili-Yurtdisi-Turkler-ve-Akraba-Topluluklar-Baskanligi-Teskilatve-Gorevleri-Hakkinda-Kanun.pdf
The institution deals with all Turks living abroad regardless of the place and the cognates and their rights. Specific desks operate for the areas with high density of Turkish population. Germany desk is one of them. Working in the Germany desk, Atmaca states that their first priority is to enhance the rights of Turkish citizens in Germany and make them beware of their rights. He points out the change in language learning. Contrary to the previous immigrants, today‟s Turks living in Germany know German well; but they are not capable of speaking Turkish. Thus, the aim is to make them learn Turkish 173, avoid them alienating from their cultural values. When asked about the institution‟s stance towards “brain drain”, Turalı explains that the institution does not seek to reserve the brain drain. Rather Turks living abroad is viewed as a positive thing in terms of strengthening the diaspora. Instead of making them return their hometown; collaborating with the Turks living abroad is the policy. 174 This attitude again reveals a considerable shift in the relations with Turks abroad and, more importantly, the shift in the perceptions. Avoiding from binding them to the “home”, the institution encourages Turk to live abroad in order to strengthen diasporic activities. It means that Turkey does not anymore want to be referred as an introverted. Not only with its trade relations or foreign policy, but also with its citizens, Turkey now wants to be an outward looking country. In the meanwhile, consolidating more powerful ties within Turks and kindred remain as the essential point.
Overall, the institution seeks to reveal the solidarity between Turkish people abroad, regardless of whether they are citizens or kindred. The tenets examined in the first part of the state level and the aim of the institution intersects with each other. The more the Euroskepticism increases, the less the Turkish public opinion is in favor of the EU membership and the more discouraged the government to take action towards EU issues. The very establishment 173
Metin Atmaca, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, Almanya Masası, 5 May 2011 174 Ahmet Turalı, Personal interview by Çağlayan Çetin, Ankara: Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Topluluklar Başkanlığı, Kültürel ve Sosyal İlişkiler Daire Başkanlığı, 5 May 2011
of the institution can be regarded as the Turkey‟s attempt to go on its own way in opposed to keep waiting in front of the EU‟s door. Cooperating with Turks, kindreds and related communities from all over the world, collaborating to enhance the image of Turkey, raising the power of Turks, protecting them from assimilation and xenophobia are the moves that take the negative perception of „foreigners‟ towards Turks for granted. It is the declaration that EU is not the only alternative. Turks, Turkic states and kindreds can well form a political entity that can act on the world scene as the counterpart of the EU, if not a rival. It would be wrong to refer the institution as the rebirth of the imperial claims of pan-Turkism; but it is obvious that it reveals/constructs shared common sense of identity, history and destiny appeal.
Chapter 4 Third Image - Systemic Level
Mentioned in the previous section, the analysis would not be completed in the absence of the systemic level. Systemic level deals with the outcomes that stemmed from the system‟s very nature of anarchy. In the lack of international hierarchy, states do not obey an overarching authority and act in the limits of the system. In the system, there are sovereign actors and a state acts in accordance with the acts of other states. The changes in the international system after the Cold War and Turkey‟s new geopolitical position affected its identity to a great extent. In this part, I am going to explain the shift in the identity of Turkey in the systemic context. In doing so, first of all the changes in the system will be reviewed. Then, how Turkey has reacted to the changes will be examined with special emphasis on the regions and the actors that are vital in Turkish foreign policy. These are Middle East, Balkans, Central Asia & Caucasus and EU alongside with the notable actors US and Russia. This section aims to explore how systemic changes lead Turkey to act a multi-dimensional foreign policy and how this foreign policy affected Turkey‟s identity in the EU accession period.
To begin with, the collapse of the Soviet Union marked the end of the Cold War. The Soviet threat is eliminated and the bipolar world came to an end. Although nuclear power still is an important element, the logic behind the bipolar balance that is depended on the nuclear weapons came to end. The era that world once dominated by US and USSR is terminated. The new world brought its own conditions, challenges as well as opportunities. One of the most important consequences was the emergence of the new nation states with the collapse of USSR and Yugoslavia. Fifteen new states emerged from USSR: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. Five states emerged from Yugoslavia at first in 1991: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Slovenia. Until this time, after series of conflicts and independence wars, there existed seven states from the dissolution of Yugoslavia: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Slovenia. The significance of these dissolutions to Turkey will be dealt in separate parts below; but the point is that Turkey found herself in a different geopolitical situation. She became neighbor with some of the newly emerged states and the developments in Balkan geography urged Turkey due to the proximity and the historical and cultural ties with the nations in the region. Turkey found herself in more problematic environment than ever. Bordering with the regions Caucasus, Balkans, Middle East and the Mediterranean, Turkey confronted with various complications and security challenges. Moreover, the impact of West on the new blocs became lesser than was in the bipolar world, in which it is not a must to side with either US or USSR.
The importance of the NATO diminished since its containing Communism role is disappeared. NATO tried to adjust itself according to the new parameters of the new era. Similarly, Turkey‟s strategic importance as a barrier against Soviet threat is disappeared to the West. However, the conditions in the new era put Turkey in a different context and created new 70
spheres in which Turkey‟s strategic position is not diminished, but changed shape. Turkey reidentified its role in the international arena in the post-Cold War world according to the new parameters. Her new role leaved no space for isolationist and passive stance. The changes in the international system forced Turkey to be more active in her relations with other states and reformulate her foreign policy. The new foreign policy affected her identity and its projection inevitably. In December 11, 1999 Ecevit summarized Turkey‟s new role just after the EU summit meeting that approved Turkey‟s candidacy for membership: “The Turks have been Europeans for 600 years. But the Turks are not only Europeans. They are also Asian, Caucasian and Middle Eastern at once. Turkey is a power in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea Basins and the Balkans. It is becoming the energy terminal where the gas and oil riches of the Caspian Basin and the Caucasus will be transported to world markets. It is not only a bridge between Europe and Asia but it is also a living bridge between Christianity, Judaism and Islam.”175 The same rhetoric is seen in the words of Ahmet Davutoğlu today. The striking point is that Erdoğan and Davutoğlu are not acting only in accordance with their personal political view, but it is the changing international system that make leaders act in this way, be them conservative, republican, left-wing or right-wing.
What I argue is that Turkey has pursued an active policy since the end of the Cold War. Yet, a decade from the end of the Cold War was the era that Turkey try to get accustomed to the new system and involved in the regional matters that has never been that active before. In that period, “hard politics” still mattered; i.e. continuing impacts of Iraqi-Kuwait War, SerboBosnian and Serbo-Croat Wars, Gulf War, Chechen revolts against Russia, Abkhazians revolts against Georgia, Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, etc were still
Bülent Ecevit, Speech delivered at Helsinki Summit, Finland Helsinki, 11 December 1999, http://www.belgenet.com/arsiv/ab/helsinkizirve_01.html
making up the major foreign policy agenda. Every state tried to settle down and find a new path for her foreign policy in the decade after the end of the Cold War and Turkey was no exception. Then, when we come to 2000s, Turkey added the “soft power” dimension to her foreign policy activism in hard politics. In other words, Turkey, with the decline of its importance in the eyes of the West after the East-West confrontation, enhanced using soft power, after getting over the initial impacts of the changes in the system. It is a must to mention Joseph Nye when the issue is “soft power”. In 1990 Nye referred to “soft power” in his book “Bound to Lead: The Changing Nature of American Power”. Then, in 2004, he extended the term and wrote about the soft power as a means of success in international relations.176 He explains that soft power is “the ability to shape the preferences of others” 177. “It is the capacity to attract and inspire. It is about arousing interest, capturing imagination and causing admiration.” 178 “Soft power does not involve coercion via threats or inducement via payments.” 179 “It is bringing in the co-optive power; „the ability to shape what others want‟, different from the command power which may be called as „the ability to change what others do‟. It can rest on the attractiveness of one‟s own culture and values or the ability to manipulate the agenda of political choices in a manner that makes others fail to express some preferences because they seem to be too unrealistic.” 180 Although there are some criticisms to Nye‟s soft power idea, it is regarded as one of the prominent concepts of world politics of 21 st century. In the next section, I am going to explain how the changes in the new order affected Turkish foreign policy and how it has been giving shape to Turkey‟s re-identifying herself. Since the aim is to show Turkey‟s multi-dimensional 176
Joseph Nye, Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics, (US: US PublicAffairs, 2004) Ibid 178 Hakan Altınay, “Turkey‟s Soft Power: An Unpolished Gem or an Elusive Mirage”, Insight Turkey 10:2 (2008), p.55 179 Pınar Bilgin and Berivan Eliş, “Hard Power, Soft Power: Toward a More Realistic Power Analysis”, Insight Turkey 10:2 (2008), p.11 180 Joseph S. Nye, “Soft Power” Foreign Policy, No:80 (1990), p.7 177
foreign policy; instead of the previous prevalent one-dimensioned policy shaped by Western powers, the regions that Turkey has been actively involved will be examined separately.
4.1. Regional Assessments The changes in the system and the consequences over the Turkey‟s identity question will be examined region by region and by giving emphasis on the specific actors which have prominent place in Turkish foreign policy.
As the Turkey-EU relations is already examined in the previously, it is not going to be examined in detail in this section. Nevertheless, the changes that stemmed from the system also affected Europe, so did Turkey. One essential consequence of the systemic changes on EU is about the threat conception. EU, being in the victorious part of the Cold War, is not expecting conventional military threats. The Soviet threat is over. Besides, it has completed its in economical and political unity and still continuing to seek cultural and social unity. The „security‟ perception is changed. Hitherto, the security for Europeans means more terrorism, migration and minority problems, while it is less about the conventional military power. Xenophobia and intolerance to different identities are the other elements that rise in European societies. In return, EU is making up its agenda with the aim of finding solutions to such threats. Multiculturalism, cultural integration, unity in diversity concepts are celebrated and put forward in the legal documents of EU. In such context, Turkey positions herself accordingly in two ways. First, Turkey, not able to act as the barrier against Soviet threat, claims that Turkey can have contributions in eliminating such „soft threats‟ and can increase EU‟s soft power. Second, she utilizes EU‟s concepts of the „cultural integration, unity in diversity and the celebrating cultural differences‟ mentality for her own advantage. Then, Turkey is not anymore
trying to prove that Turkey is a fully Western country. She now asserts that Turkey is different from EU states: She is both Muslim and secular. She has her own civilizational values. With its unique character, Turkey should be in the union, if you Europeans do not want to be called as Christian Club or as the facilitator of the clash of civilizations. Turkey enjoys smooth relations with non-Western part of the world. Turkey will be the door of the Middle East and Caucasus to EU. This is the reason that Turkey must be admitted.
4.1.2. Middle East and Arab World
In the Cold War period, Turkey could not play an active role in Middle East affairs. One of the main reasons was the anti-imperialist, anti-Western stance of the Arab world. Turkey refrained from conflicts with Western powers and did not want to get through any conflict that may put a damper on her Western alliance. Similarly, given Turkey‟s membership of NATO and recognizing Israel etc., Arab world was skeptic about Turkey‟s Western orientation. Another reason that Turkey did not pursue a comprehensive policy on the region is to avoid the clashes with neighbors, notably USSR. 181 Apart from these, throughout the Cold War era Turkey cannot normalize her relations with the region due to the conflicts such as; fall of the Mosaddegh by CIA coup, 1967,1973 Arab-Israel Wars, Lebanon Civil War, 1982 Israel invasion of Lebanon, 1980-88 Iran-Iraq War. The impacts of super powers US and USSR over the conflicts and their rivalry made Turkey keep away from the Arab world.
The end of the Cold War brought instabilities to all regions and affected the already problematic region Middle East. The Gulf War (Iraq-Kuwait war in 1991) occurred immediately after the Cold War. The Western powers involved in the war and again Turkey, under the presidency of Özal, actively supported the international coalition against Iraq. However, the US power on the region was still there and there were no room for Turkey to 181
develop relations apart from the West. Then, US invasion of Afghanistan (2002) and finally Iraq(2003) took place. After the invasions, the failure of the US in rebuilding Iraq and of acting as a mediator in Middle East opened new rooms of maneuver for Turkey to pursue more effective diplomacy. The stability of the region has always been a matter for Turkey due to its proximity and due to the rich oil reserves of the region. When she found a space, she did not remain as an outsider observer, rather pursued to take part actively in the regional politics.
The rise of political Islam in Turkey with AKP also affects the perception of Arab world. The well-economic performance of Turkey, the existence of the democratic environment that is far better than in any Arab state and embracing Islam at the same time impress the Arab world. The effective multiparty system and the preserving the secular structure is one of a kind in the Arab world. Reconciled democracy and Islam, Turkey has started to be seen as the model for the region with its unique character. Thus, especially after 2003, Turkey‟s being a model for the Arab world is one of the top issues in Turkish and Arab politics. The perception of the Arab world towards Turkey also turned out to be positive after Turkish parliament‟s refusal to allow the US to deploy troops on Turkish soil against Iraq. The relations with the Middle East states gradually improved, with the exception of Israel. In addition to the overall picture drew above, the improvement in one-to-one relations is seen. Syria abandoned to support PKK and the claims over Hatay did not compose one of the foreign policy issues anymore. Borders are cleaned from mines. The visas are eliminated and the free movement is provided between two states. Many protocols are signed between Syria and Turkey and cooperation in economic and social spheres is broadened.182
In the meanwhile, Iraq and Turkey relations progressed. Trade between two states increased in the reconstruction period of Iraq and Iraq became the fifth export partner of 182
“The High Level Strategic Cooperation Agreement signed between Turkey and Syria”, September 16, 2009 For more information: http://www.resmi-gazete.org/gundem/duyurular/icisleri-bakanligi/turkiye-suriye-yuksekduzeyli-stratejik-isbirligi-konseyi-birinc.html
Turkey. Turkey took significant steps towards Kurdish Regional Government. Mutual visits are paid by the leaders of Turkey, Iraq and Regional Kurdish Government. After the Agreement Memorandum of 2007, High Level Strategic Cooperation Agreement is signed between Turkey and Iraq in 2008 in the political, economic, energy, trade, water resources, security and military spheres.183 Finally, Turkish Consulate is opened in Arbil in 2010.
Turkey gives importance also to the relations Iran. Iran has become one of the most significant trade partners of Turkey, whose export rates are increased ten times in eight years time from 2000 to 2008. Besides with the Energy Cooperation Agreement signed in 2007, two states agreed on building Nabucco Pipeline, which is thought to decrease Turkey‟s dependence on Russia in natural gas. By this way, Turkey aims to become an important energy corridor between the Caspian, the Middle East, and Europe. In order to accomplish it, Turkey is expected to develop smooth relations with Iran. 184 Turkey‟s support for Iran‟s peaceful nuclear weapons, when the whole Western world is against to, is another element that created a trust of Turkey in Iran. Turkey‟s desire of a powerful and stable region made her pursue an active independent role towards Middle East. Apart from these, Turkey has become the first country outside the Gulf to be given the status of strategic partner of the Gulf Cooperation Council 185, whose members are United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar while Jordan and Morocco is expected to join in the near future.186
The exception to the ongoing fruitful relations is Israel, the only non-Muslim state in the region. Turkey has always been in favor of seeking smooth relations with Israel due to its close ties with US. More, Israel and Turkey cooperation became important towards the PKK 183
“The High Level Strategic Cooperation Agreement signed between Turkey and Iraq” July 10, 2008 For more information: http://www.mfa.gov.tr/data/DISPOLITIKA/Bolgeler/ortadogu/irak/Ortak%20Siyasi%20Bildirge.pdf 184 Wiliam Hale, “Turkey and the Middle East in the 'New Era'” Insight Turkey 11:3 (2009): p.145 185 “GCC names Turkey first strategic partner outside the Gulf”, Gulf News (September 3,2008): 15 May 2011 http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/general/gcc-names-turkey-first-strategic-partner-outside-the-gulf-1.129631 186 “Gulf bloc to consider Jordan, Morocco membership”, Reuters (May 10,2011): 15 May 2011 http://af.reuters.com/article/moroccoNews/idAFLDE7492I020110510
supporting Syria. However, Israeli relations deteriorated over time. Turkey‟s invitation to Hamas leader to Turkey187 offended Israel. Turkey criticized the Gaza attacks of Israel in 2009 and created a heavy negative public opinion within Turkey against Israel. In the World Economic Forum at Davos, Switzerland, on January 29, 2009, Erdoğan interrupted the moderator, which then became very popular as “one minute” reprimand. Erdoğan accused Israel of the killing ordinary people and walked out of the saloon. This severe attempt made relations with Israel worsen while Turkey gather attention and appreciation of the Arab world. Erdoğan and Turkey is celebrated in Arab world after the Davos incident. Moreover, Israeli attack to Mavi Marmara Gaza aid fleet coming from Turkey deteriorated the relations more.
Before the Israeli relation got worse, Turkey has been trying to act as a mediator in various conflicts of the region. She tried to restart negotiations between Israel and Syria. She involved in Israeli-Palestinian conflict in different ways, Lebanese crisis, Syria-Iraq, Hamas-Al Fatah, Iran-US. Turkey‟s being a third party and her involvement in the crisis as a mediator is actually a new strategy in Turkish foreign policy. This willingness clearly signals a shift in Turkey‟s long-standing policy of non-intervention in regional conflicts.188 Acting as the new peace-builder in the region, her new role is somehow welcomed by different regional actors. By this way, Turkey opened a new sphere of influence. She did not only increase its economic, political and military relations and strength over the region, but also added the “soft power” dimension. Overall, Turkey started to be referred as the model of the Arab world and emerged as an active player in Middle East affairs.
“Hamas lideri Meşal Ankara'da”, BBC Turkish (February 16, 2006): 15 May 2011 http://www.bbc.co.uk/turkish/news/story/2006/02/060216_palestine_turkey.shtml 188 Meliha Benli Altunışık, “The Possiblities and Limits of Turkey‟s Soft Power in the Middle East”, Insight Turkey 10:2 (2008), p.50
The changes in the system affected Balkan Peninsula and its relations with Turkey. After the dissolution of Yugoslavia, the word that explains the region best was the “instability”. Turkey has historical and cultural ties with the newly emerged states and in some cases, Turkey played an active role in the regional conflicts. Nevertheless, it would be wrong to state that in period immediate after the Cold War Turkey sought a predominant role to regain Balkans. Rather, in the first decade of post-Cold War, the priority of Turkey was the stability and security of her neighborhood. Thus, Turkey shaped her policies in the limits of the new order.
For Europe, the conflicts in the Balkans were not big enough to threaten the existing Western security structure. European powers were satisfied with the containment of the conflict.189 For Turkey, the conflicts may cause long-term instability and Turkey wants to be cautious about the migrants from the Balkans, since migration in 1989 from Bulgaria created problems. Therefore, Turkey pursued an active policy towards the region and involved in the conflicts. The impacts of the Cold War were still there and the states were either trying to gain their independence or trying to transform to the liberal economic system. Thus, the impact of US, NATO, UN and European powers was obvious. Actually, Turkish and American foreign policies were complying with each other and this conformity facilitated Turkey‟s activeness on the region. Besides, USSR was too far to have a direct impact on. Both US and Turkey wanted stability and the newly emerged states to adopt liberal economy. For this reason, Turkey did not act bilaterally, but she took part in the multilateral actions and urged international organizations to play more effective role. 1992 Bosnian War and 1999 Kosovo War are the incidents that Turkey involved in through international mechanisms such as; KFOR, EUFOR,UNMIK, EULEX and EUPOL. Turkey also urged Albania and Macedonia to settle the Turkish minority 189
Mustafa Türkeş, “Turkish Foreign Policy Towards Balkans: Quest for Enduring Stability and Security” in Idris Bal (ed.), Turkish Foreign Policy in the Post Cold War Era, (Florida: BrownWalker Press,2004), p.204
disputes. Turkey is one of the founding fathers of South East European Cooperation Process (1996) whose members are Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Greece, Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, and lately Croatia, Moldova, Montenegro and Slovenia. Besides, in 2008 Regional Cooperation Council is initiated among the same members including Turkey as well. Apart from these, Turkey was one of the firsts to recognize the newly independent states. Her stance towards recognition increased Turkey‟s credibility among states in question and Turkey had given them the support that they need from the external powers.
To sum up, Balkans matter to Turkey geo-strategically. Despite its strategic location; the Ottoman legacy, historical and cultural ties and Islam, Turkish minorities constitute the elements why Turkey needs to take part in the Balkans actively. The gap after the Cold War enabled Turkey to be more interested over the region. It has not been a long time that hard security issues have terminated. Turkey, in the 1991-2000 period, conducted her foreign policy accordingly. Today, the hard security issues are less likely to emerge. Then, Turkey started to use its soft power and stress its historical and cultural legacy; referring to Ottoman past and Islam as the unifying factors.
4.1.4. Central Asia and Caucasus
Throughout the Cold War, Turkish foreign policy towards Central Asia and Caucasus was shaped in the frame of being NATO member and strategic ally of US. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, Turkey needed to develop new policies towards the new parameters of the region. Had been act as a barrier in front of USSR and communism, Turkey then needed to position herself with a new strategic role. Indeed, the region has always been important for Turkey‟s interests because of the oil and gas and its trade potential. Turkey was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of ex-Soviet states. Turkey tend to believe that she can consolidate the Turkish unity among the former Soviet republics of Caucasus and Central Asia; 79
namely Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Turgut Özal, the president of Turkey from 1989 to1993, was eager to fill the gap left from USSR. In his famous saying, “from Adriatic to great wall of China” he aimed to create the Turkish Unity. Just like the unified Europe, he dreamed of United Turkic World. 190 Turkey tried to establish close relations with newly independent states and tried to become the official leader of the Turkic-speaking states in the region. 191 However, there were limits to Turkey‟s leadership. Although the Cold War was over and the USSR hegemony was demised legally, Russia‟s de facto dominance has not yet come to an end. Russia and Iran also redesigned their policies. They were uncomfortable with the Turkish impact, which is engaged into Western values and the liberal economic system. Baku-Tbilisi -Ceyhan Pipeline, which is planned in 1992, was seen as Turkey‟s attempts to counterbalance Russian and Iranian control over the region economically, politically and militarily. Despite the Russian and Iranian controversies, the pipeline is initiated and started to operate in 2006. Likewise, Baku-TbilisiCeyhan natural gas pipeline is initiated. The most significant project is the Nabucco Pipeline, which will bring gas from the Caspian region, with much of its supplies coming from Azerbaijan, going through Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary and Austria. With the abovementioned projects, Turkey aim to diminish the Russian proportion over Turkey‟s oil and gas and to be the energy hub of the region.
Despite the energy projects, Turkeys refrained from the confrontations with Russia and Iran on the hard security issues and constrained its relations with cultural and economical spheres. So to speak, she refrained from acting as “the big brother”. Nevertheless, this new
“Özal‟ın Hayalindeki Türkiye”, Büyük Anavatan Partisi http://www.buyukanavatanpartisi.com/default.aspx?mi=172 191 Phar Kim Beng, “Turkey‟s Potential as a Soft Power: A Call for Conceptual Clarity” Insight Turkey 10:2 (2008), p.24
position opened Turkey various spaces to assert its influence via soft power. In other words, Turkey acquired advantage to exercise her soft power. There are various practical examples. TÜRKSOY (International Organization of Turkic Culture) is established in 1992 in order to expand cultural relations within Turkic states. The aim of TÜRKSOY includes revealing common culture, history, religion, art, literature and examining them as whole. Turkish Speaking Countries Summit and Turkish General Assembly (Turkish States and Communities Friendship, Brotherhood and Cooperation Assembly) serve the same aim “Big Student Project” is initiated and many scholarships are provided to students from the countries in the region. Turkish-Kyrgyz and Turkish-Kazak universities are opened in the countries in question. Turkish television broadcasts are expanded.
The starting dates of the initiatives (1992-93) make it clear that Turkey tried to make use of the collapse of USSR to enhance its influence over the region. In doing so, Turkey tried to assert the “Turkish” identity of herself and of the countries‟ in the region. She established pipeline projects and new economic and trade relations. She focused on cultural relations and wanted to strengthen the ties with educational initiatives. She tried to vitalize the historical ties and underlined the commonalities between Turkic states and Turkey. Nevertheless, Turkey did not seek to spread pan-Turkist ideology and does not have the desire to establish a unified Turkish state. “Turkey did not succumb to a pan-Turkic temptation; it did have to devise a special set of policies for dealing with these new neighbors and their problems. For half-dozen ethnic republics and equal number of Turkic minorities in these areas, Turkey had become to some extent a model and leader.”192 Secular, democratic and industrialized Turkey has been seen as the actor that can fulfill the created „geopolitical vacuum‟ 193 with her very close
Barry Rubin, “Understanding turkey‟s New Foreign Policy” in Barry Rubin and Kemal Kirişçi (ed.s), Turkey in World Politics: An Emerging Multiregional Power (Istanbul: Boğaziçi University Press, 2002) p.331 193 Victor Panin and Henry Paniev, “Turkey and Russia” in Idris Bal (ed.), Turkish Foreign Policy in the PostCold War (Florida: BrownWalker Press,2004), p.253
civilizational ties with the societies of the newly formed states. Turkish foreign policy over the region can be best described with the term “cultural Turkism”. 194 Refraining from disturbing the Russia, Iran and other interest groups of West, Turkey pursue to utilize her soft power and underline the commonalities via stressing her „Turkishness‟.
4.1.5. Russian Federation
With the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the security concerns of the bipolar system were abolished. Turkey, being NATO member and the Western ally, started to build relations with Russia. Indeed, Turkey was the first NATO member state to initiate military and political relations with Russia. 195 For Turkey, Soviet and communism threat was over and a new arena happened to be opened for rebuilding the political and economic relations. Russia, on the other hand, did not see Turkey as a threat as at the beginning of the post-Cold War. The Caucasus and Central Asia became the new rivalry arena between Turkey and Russia, both trying to act the leader role. Russia intended to remain as the hegemon over the region while Turkey sought to vitalize the historical legacies and civilizational ties. Nevertheless, this rivalry has not led to a serious conflict. Turkey, well-understood Russian interests, refrained from putting herself forward. Turkey does not anymore support Chechens or Tatars against Russia, nor elaborates a harsh Pan-Turkic discourse. Instead, Turkey puts emphasis on cultural ties and educational cooperation within the soft power context. Purging from the mutual threats compose one reason for the new era of relations. Another point is the economic importance of Russia to Turkey. Despite the projects to lessen the import of natural gas and oil from Russia, she still ranks first among Turkey‟s import partners.Turkey imports approximately 65 percent of its 194
Ian O. Lesser and Graham E. Fuller, Balkanlardan Batı Çine, Türkiye‟nin Yeni Jeopolitik Konumu (Alfa Basım Yayın Dağıtım:2000), p.214 195 Victor Panin and Henry Paniev, “Turkey and Russia” in Idris Bal (ed.), Turkish Foreign Policy in the PostCold War (Florida: BrownWalker Press,2004)
natural gas and 25 percent of its oil from Russia 196. Planned in 1997 and operating since 2005, Blue Stream is one of the most important projects for supplying natural gas from Russia into Turkey over Black Sea. The bilateral trade relations are even expected to increase to $100 billion over the next five years. 197 Apart from the economical dependency, Turkey and Russia have historically seen as the outsiders of the Western world. Despite being member of various Western institutions, the prolongation of the EU membership of Turkey paved the way to the non-Western character of Turkey to come to the scene. Turkish exclusion from EU is considered on the identical differences. On the other hand, Russia has been against West throughout the history. Russia and Turkey appear to meet on the common ground of being “rest”, considering the popular saying “West and the rest”.
Having these factors at the background, it can be truly stated that Turkish-Russian relations became more fruitful in 2000s after consolidating mutual trust in 1990s. In 1990s, economic cooperation was the determinant factor while in 2000s political relations are expanded. In 1992 Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) is established with Turkey‟s initiative. The members include Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Ukraine and Turkey. Although BSEC has not been an organization like EU with tight economical or political ties, BSEC exists as the example of Turkey‟s attempts to consolidate new spheres for economic, political and security concerns apart from Europe. BlackSeaFor and Operation Black Sea Harmony also provides some examples of cooperation between Turkey and Russia and their will to take action against the common threats; terrorism, drug, weapon and human trafficking. 198 Recently, High Level Strategic
F. William Engdahl, “Turkey: Washıngton‟s Geopolitical Pivot”, European Dialogue, http://www.eurodialogue.org/Turkey-Washington-Geopolitical-Pivot 197 “Russia, Turkey could increase trade to $100 billion over 5 years”, RiaNovosti (May 12, 2010): 18 May 2011 http://en.rian.ru/world/20100512/158994532.html 198
Türk Silahlı Kuvvetleri Genel Kurmay Başkanlığı, “Karadeniz'in Deniz Güvenliği” http://www.tsk.tr/4_ULUSLARARASI_ILISKILER/4_17_Karadenizin_Deniz_Guvenligi/Karadenizin_Deniz_Gu venligi.htm
Cooperation Council is set up between the two states. According to the agreements signed in 12 May 2010, various steps are taken in political, economical, trade, social and cultural spheres. One important decision taken is the elimination of visas mutually for visits not exceeding thirty days. The new implementation not only facilitates trade relations but it is also regarded as the confirmation of trust between two countries.
All in all, the disintegration of the Soviet Union opened new paths for cooperation between Russia and Turkey. While the concerns were dependent on economic and security factors in 1990s, the cooperation is expanded to political and social spheres. The improved relations enabled Turkey to pursue a multidimensional policy, instead of one dimensional proWestern agenda.
4.1.6. United States Turkey‟s strategic importance is thought to decline in the eye of the Western world, particularly of United States, after her role being barrier against the Soviet threat is disappeared. Another side of the coin is the decreasing importance of US to Turkey. No more anxious about the spread of communism, Turkey did not feel compelled to go in line with US policies. US role in Turkish foreign policy changed shape. However, the new circumstances raised Turkey as a more important rising power. The US-Turkey relations is started to be named as “strategic alliance” after the Cold War. Determined under the new conditions, new threats and new geopolitical conditions; the new era in US-Turkey relations paved the way for a multidimensional foreign policy of Turkey. Morton Abramowitz pictures Turkey in the eyes of US as follows:
"Turkey poses no security threat to the United States compared to the situation in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan and Russia in and around the Caucasus. Turkey is not a key player like the European Union, Japan and China in dealing with the international financial debacle. It's not 84
an energy exporter like Saudi Arabia. It does not harbor terrorists who want to strike the United States, and it is not a proliferation risk like Pakistan and North Korea. In short, Turkey does not make headlines in The New York Times or on CNN.”199 Abramowitz shows clearly Turkey does not pose a threat to US with regard to the primary foreign policy purposes. Rather, the interests of two states meet on the common grounds. The importance of Turkey increases as she starts to pursue an active foreign policy in her geopolitical region, where consists of the main challenging geographies Middle East, Balkans, Caucasus and Black Sea. US aspiration to get involved in the energy politics of Caucasus and Central Asia, render Turkey as a strategically important ally. Turkey emerges as a reliable ally to balance Russia and Iran dominance over the region. US appears to adhere moderate Islam in opposed to radical Islamic waves dominating the region. Turkey with her secular character and her engagement in liberal economy and Western institutions make Turkey a unique and vital actor in the region to act as a model. To this end, US proposes a “Turkish model” for the Central Asia and Caucasus200. The similar situation is valid in the Middle East region. After the September 11 terrorist acts, terrorism found an essential place in the US National Security Strategy, which is once determined within conventional military threats. 201 US re-identified the conception of security that emphasizes the threats stemming from the internal conditions of other states; particularly the lack of democracy. 9/11 attacks constituted the basis of hitherto US-Turkey relations inevitably. US proposed “moderate Islam” for Turkey to act as a model
Morton Abramowitz, in Ömer Taşpınar “Obama's Turkey Policy: Bringing Credibility to „Strategic Partnership‟” Insight Turkey 11:1 (2009), p.1 200 Hüseyin Bağcı and Saban Kardas, “Post-September 11 Impact: The Strategic Importance of Turkey Revisited” in Idris Bal (ed.), Turkish Foreign Policy in the Post-Cold War (Florida: BrownWalker Press,2004), p.445 201 The White House, “III. Strengthen Alliances to Defeat Global Terrorism and Work to Prevent Attacks Against Us and Our Friends” http://georgewbushwhitehouse.archives.gov/nsc/nss/2002/nss3.html
for the Arab world 202. She is regarded as a bridge between Islamic world and the West. Although Turkey officially has not acceptted such role, it seems that she embraced being role model to Arab world and being a moderate-Muslim state. As a matter of course, US proposal of such models for the Middle East and Central Asia and Caucasus shaped Turkey‟s relations with her neighbors. In contrast to some overlapping interests, Turkish parliament rejection to US to deploy troops in Turkish soil to invade Iraq is seen as the sign of Turkey‟s independent foreign policy. The opposition to her confident super power ally is regarded as the cornerstone in Turkey‟s relations with US. Turkey is considered that she gave signals to the shape of the further Turkish-US relations, that Turkey is not dependent on US and can right pursue her own interests. Although it is a must to elaborate the Turkish-US relations in detail for better understanding, several points can be briefly deducted with regard to the changing position of Turkey. One is that, overlapping interests of Turkey and US - that is sustaining stability, economic improvement and to balance the emergence of a hegemon in the neighboring geography of Turkey – opened a wider space of manoeuver for Turkey. Second, US placed Turkey as the model for the Arab world and ex-Soviet countries. US regulated her policies accordingly and referred Turkey as a model of moderate Islam against radical Islamic, nondemocratic states of Middle East; namely Iran. And, Turkey embraced her new position. Third, the elimination of Soviet threat enabled Turkey to pursue an active independent policy to some extent (as seen in 2003 Iraq War example); rather than her previous “faithful ally” position.
Although US stance towards Turkey cannot be drawn with clear-cut lines; US –especially after 9/11- has regarded Turkey as the model for moderate Islam. See: US Department of Defense, “Wolfowitz Says U.S. Must Encourage Moderate Muslim States”, Jim Garamone American Forces Press Service (June 5, 2002): 15 June 2011 http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=43784 ; “Prime Minister objects to ‟moderate Islam‟ label” Hürriyet Daily News, (April, 5 2009): 15 June 2011 http://www.hurriyet.com.tr/english/domestic/11360374.asp
Soft Power of Turkey
All in all, the systemic changes opened new paths for Turkey. Turkey found herself in a new geopolitical environment in which one-dimensional Western-oriented policy does not meet the new order‟s requirements. Indeed, following multi-dimensional foreign policy has become a must. The system leaded Turkey to re-identify herself. In this process, Turkey was willing to play more active role in the neighboring regions with historical, cultural and ethnic ties. In the era that the key for success in world politics is thought to use soft power, 203 Turkey embraced different identities to assert her influence via her unique soft power. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) Commission on Smart Power published a report co-chaired by Joseph Nye and Richard Armitage in 2007. In the report, “smart power” term is used as the combination of hard power and soft power. The report puts forward the means to use US smart power. According to the report: “Specifically, the United States should focus on five critical areas: 1)Alliances, partnerships and institutions: The United States must reinvigorate the alliances, partnerships, and institutions that serve our interests and help us to meet twenty-first century challenges. 2)Global development: Elevating the role of development in U.S. foreign policy can help the United States align its own interests with the aspirations of people around the world. 3)Public diplomacy: Bringing foreign populations to our side depends on building long-term, people-to-people relationships, particularly among youth. 4)Economic integration: Continued engagement with the global economy is necessary for growth and prosperity, but the benefits of free trade must be expanded to include those left behind at home and abroad. 5)Technology and innovation: Energy security and climate change require American leadership to help establish global consensus and develop innovative solutions.”204
Joseph Nye, Soft Power: The Means to Success in World Politics, (US: US PublicAffairs, 2004) “CSIS Commıssıon on Smart Power A Smarter, More Secure America” (Co-chaired by Richard L. Armitage and Joseph s. Nye), Center for Strategic and International Studies, (Washington DC: CSIS Press, 2007), p.9 http://media.csis.org/smartpower/071105_CSIS_Smart_Power_Report.pdf 204
The abovementioned tenets of smart power are formulated for US, but it can also be applied to Turkey‟s smart power as well. Although the examination of such a detailed topic requires a better research, the question of “what Turkey does for using her smart power?” can be briefly answered. The first factor “alliances, partnerships and institutions” appears as one of the areas that Turkey well utilizes. In recent years, Turkey has been acting as the third party and as a self-proposed mediator in conflict resolutions. Moreover, she is engaged in multilateral relations and taking multilateral actions. Being member of UN, NATO, BSEC, Council of Europe, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, D-8, World Trade Organization, Economic Cooperation Organization, Organization of the Islamic Conference, OECD, and TÜRKSOY etc.; Turkey builds alliances, multilateral relations and partnerships and participates to finding solutions to twenty-first century challenges. Among all, Turkey‟s co-presidency of Alliance of Civilizations is significant as Turkey ascribes a role to solve the problems stemming from civilizational differences to herself. Second point is global development. Although US and Turkey are not comparable in this context, Turkish contribution to global development should not be undervalued. Turkey‟s contributions to the development of all parts of the world through donations have increased over time to a great extent. Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency states that the total donations abroad, carried out by the just the institution itself is raised from 66 million dollars in 2003
to 793,11 million dollars in 2008
. The number is decreased to 707,17 million
dollars in 2009 due to the economic crisis, but the rise of the donations for the sake of global development is clear as the general tendency. 207
Türk İşbirliği ve Kalkınma İdaresi Başkanlığı, Kalkınma Yardımları Raporu 2004, TIKA, 2004 http://www.tika.gov.tr/KalkinmaYardimlariRaporu2004/KalkinmaYardimlariRaporu_2004.pdf 206 Türk İşbirliği ve Kalkınma İdaresi Başkanlığı, Kalkınma Yardımları Raporu 2009, TIKA, 2009 http://www.tika.gov.tr/yukle/dosyalar/2010/raporlar/RAPOR2009.pdf 207 The data before 2003 and after 2009 is not available. For more information see: Nükrettin Parlak, “Orta AsyaKafkasya-Balkan Ülkeleriyle İlişkiler ve Türk Dış Yardımları”, Dissertation TODAI, 2007 http://www.tika.gov.tr/TR/Yayin_Detay.asp?Yayin=25
Third point public diplomacy is one of the issues that Turkey started to put more emphasis on. Building people-to-people relations and gaining the peoples putting aside the state leaders can be regarded as the concepts that Turkey is quite successful with. Yunus Emre Institution and the Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad are established to serve this aim. Increasing the number of the foreign students coming to Turkey and increasing their grants constitute one of the major areas of operation for especially the latter organization. Mentioned before, Alliance of Civilization is a project that puts people at the center. In other words, the policies including people as the target are implemented. Moreover, Erdoğan‟s “One minute” incident in Davos and other casual speeches make Turkish Prime Minister “the leader of the Muslim societies”. The speeches and the character of Erdoğan is widely discussed in Arab media as well as in European news channels. Fourth point economic integration is about engagement with liberal market economy and trade relations. Turkey is member of European Customs Union. Trade relations are not only increased to a great extend, but also has expanded to the various parts of the world, including Africa. Both export and import rates increased. 208 In addition, Turkey has numerous free trade agreements with many countries. The fifth point technology and innovation is one of the Turkey‟s weaker domains. However, Turkey signed the Kyoto Protocol and showed that she acknowledges the vitality of the climate change. As a conclusion, one can say that Turkey started to be aware of her smart power and has been using it in various domains. However, it does not mean that Turkey has already fulfilled using her smart power. There many more stuff to do. It is just a brief section that pictures Turkey‟s new role. As mentioned above, Turkey was born into the era that paves the way for
T.C Başbakanlık Dış Ticaret Müsteşarlığı, Dış Ticaret İstatistikleri, http://www.dtm.gov.tr/dtmweb/index.cfm?action=detayrk&yayinID=1116&icerikID=1225&dil=TR
exercising her soft power through various regions, not solely to the West. The shift in the identity projection came as the natural outcome of this situation.
This thesis tried to point out the changing stance of Turkey in the EU accession period within the identical basis. Despite its practical benefits, EU membership had been regarded as Turkey‟s modernization project. Being in the same block with European states had been thought to make Turkey as Western as others, as civilized as Europeans. Modernization, Westernization, secularization and later on Europeanization had been used interchangeably in the Turkish political context. Even before the establishment of EU, Turkey revolutionary steps in order to conform to the Western lifestyle. The reforms were adopted by Atatürk and then carried out by the forthcoming governments, institutionalized, solidified and internalized. Turkey‟s EU membership would mean the realization of full-fledged modernization. Adopting EU reforms were the extension of the Kemalist reforms and were seen as the guide keep up with the contemporary civilizations. In this context, Turkey had been struggling to prove that she is a Western state. In order to convince the European states, Turkey used to represent herself as Western as others. The discourses of the leaders, the practices, the implementation 91
and the foreign policy agenda was set in the way to put emphasis on the Western identity of Turkey. By underlining the commonalities with European states, Turkey thought she could be regarded as modern, Western and European. However, starting from 1999, this stance of Turkey towards EU started to change. Turkey no longer seeks for the commonalities with West; rather she puts forward the differences. Turkey differentiates the Western civilization from the civilization that she belongs to. Turkey makes clear distinction between herself and Europe. She reveals the divergent points between herself and EU member states and claims that this divergence should be the reason for Turkey‟s EU membership. Whether Turkey is drifted apart from Europe is not in the scope of this study. The change in the Turkey‟s identity towards EU is analyzed. The changes are examined in three chapters. Kenneth Walt‟s “levels of analysis” model is used in order to provide a comprehensive understanding and to facilitate studying. The majority of the studies about Turkey‟s relations with Western world and her identity question are stucked into single dimensional explanations. They usually refer to the conservative character of the AKP. Those who are thought to be in the „secular‟ group in the secular versus Islamist dilemma tend to think that AKP is unwilling to be part of the Western world and has a desire to make Turkey an Islamic or Middle Eastern state. However, despite its conservative character, AKP is the party that has taken much more steps for EU membership than any other rulling party in Turkish political scene. On the other hand, nationalists are inclined to put the „blame‟ on the strong opposition of the some EU states. But very few tend to question the inherent reasons. Although these factors matter, they should be examined in a broader context to avoid misleading. This paper aimed to overcome the superficial approaches. Levels of analysis is chosen as a model because it provides a deeper understanding with individual, state and systemic
images. Admitting that no model is perfect, it is not claimed to explain everything; rather it is used as a guide in the analysis. In individual level, the character of the AKP leaders is examined. The Islamist/conservative background of the AKP cabinet is put forward and their personal perceptions are put forward as one of the reasons of the change. In doing so, the speeches of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu are analyzed through discourse analysis. Critical discourse analysis enabled us reveal what is inherently mentioned in the speeches. What is observed is that both Erdoğan and Davutoğlu describe Turkey in a different track than of Western countries. They both reveal the unique characters of Turkey and present the West as a different civilization. They like to use words like civilization, values and social norms. While they share common basic principles in projecting Turkey, there are minor differences in their Turkish image. Erdoğan is more likely to underline the Islamic credentials of Turkey while Davutoğlu adds Ottoman dimension. Both of them think that relations with the states that Turkey has historical, geographical, cultural and religious ties should be strengthened. In that context, historical ties refer to the Ottoman history; geographical ties refer to Ottoman geography; cultural and religious ties refer to the „Muslim states‟. They underline the multi-dimensional identity of Turkey and avoid from emphasizing solely the Western character. More, the advantages that Turkey would bring to EU are mentioned strongly. Turkey would be the factor that would be decisive in the future of the EU. Turkey would make EU define itself within the concepts of plurality and democracy. Otherwise, EU would remain as an identity based institution and cannot escape from labeled as the Christian Club. Although the personal views of the leaders have strong impact on the foreign policy, it can not constitute the whole answer. In the second chapter, the state image is examined. The inner dynamics of the state is analyzed. Three factors can be stated with regard to the dynamics 93
of the state. First one is the emergence of the idea of various modernities. The effects of global women movement, ethno-cultural and religious movements; reached Turkey. The „unity in diversity‟ and „celebrating cultural differences‟ discourses within the EU are also resonated in Turkey. Such developments revealed the inherent identities in Turkey. Kurdish and Alawite identities uncovered and started to be heard louder. The already existing secular-Islamist dilemma came to stage and found a wider place in the political agenda. In this context, Western type of modernization started to be questioned. The idea of being modern and Muslim at the same time gathered attention within the Turkish society. Another point is the enhancing Euroskepticism within Turkey. Turkish state has traditionally viewed the external powers as threats to Turkish unity. Going back to the Sevres Agreement, there has been an inherent skepticism towards Western powers. The identity-based harsh oppositions of EU states to Turkey‟s membership boosted the Euro-skepticism. The last factor is about the economic situation about Turkey. The improvement of Turkish economy led to perform fruitful trade relations with Middle Eastern states and decreased its dependency to Western institutions; namely IMF. More, the emergence of a new bourgeoisie class in Anatolia, appeared to have influence over political domain. Considering the conservative character of the Anatolian tigers, Turkey started to rediscover the economic importance of the non-Western regions. In order to reflect the state-origined changes, three public institutions are examined: Secretariat General for EU Affairs, Yunus Emre Institution and Presidency of Turks and Related Communities Abroad. Being the principal agent for EU membership process, SGEU does not have a divergent position from EU. However, the similar rhetoric as of Erdoğan and Davutoğlu perception is also observed. The advantages that Turkey is supposed to bring are underlined. Turkey‟s determination to carry out the reforms with or without EU, are mentioned. Turkey tries to take the control of the process, instead of passively implementing the required reforms. Secondly, Yunus Emre Insititute emerges as one of the main tools of Turkish soft 94
power. The institution aims to teach Turkish language and culture in various parts of the world with a distinctive importance to the Ottoman geography. The first cultural centers are opened in the Balkans, where ongoing activities aim to underline the commonalities with Turkish and Balkan cultures. Turkish culture lies at the heart of the institution while Europeanness is regarded as one of the many dimensions of Turkey. Last institution TRCA draws attentions with its very aim. Formation of organized lobbying activities and diaspora activities by state hand are the main aim of the institution. TRCA not only deals with Turks abroad, but also encompasses Turkic communities. The very establishment of such an organization points the importance given to the Turkic communities and deviance from the one dimensional proWestern identity of Turkey. In the third chapter, the systemic changes and their effects on Turkish identity are projected. With the demise of the Soviet Union, Communism threat is abolished and Turkey‟s role as the barrier of Communism came to an end. However, the new order produced new parameters and Turkey redefined her position according to the developments. With the collapse of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia, power vacuums occurred. Turkey found new places for maneuver. She became able to pursue multi-dimensional policies. In Central Asia and Caucasus, Turkey consolidated cultural relations with the emphasis of common Turkic identity. In Balkans, she tried to maintain stability and strengthen the relations on common historical grounds; that is the Ottoman legacy. The importance of Middle East increased and in a sense Turkey rediscovered the Arab world. The US model “an exemplary moderate Islamic state” worked well and democratic Turkey is regarded as the role model for the Muslim Arab world. Turkey placed stake on her Islamic identity in her relations with Middle East. While the parallel interests with US enhanced Turkey‟s position in some spheres, Turkey showed that her primary role is not the faithful ally of West/US, but can act as an independent actor. Security concept is redefined and the issues such as migration and terrorism emerged as the vital threats than of 95
conventional military threats for Europe and US. The soft power dimension is added to hard power. Soft power is defined as the ability to make the others want what you want to do. In this context, cultural and identical issues, values, moral principles are paid attention more than ever. From this perspective, the system has led Turkey to identify herself in a different concept than „Western states‟. What is acquired is that the explanation of the change in the Turkey‟s identical stance needs a comprehensive analysis. One should not simply state that it is because of the conservative character of AKP without looking to the state and systemic images. Likewise, it is not accurate to interpret the new position of Turkey as “EU lost Turkey”. Similarly, it is not all about the changes in the system. It is possible that, if the ruling party was not AKP, such shift in the identity might not have occurred in the same new world order. All in all, in order to understand Turkey‟s position toward EU it is required to examine all three levels. The change in the identical stance of Turkey in the EU accession period has reasons in different layers. Taking one level out would lead to miscalculations and misperceptions. In the light of the outcomes of this research and by looking into the recent developments (i.e. general elections of Turkey on 12nd of June 2011 and the ongoing turmoil in the Middle East), it would be acceptable to forecast that this trend will preserve its pace. In line with the structure of the thesis, reviewing three levels can be helpful to acquire some assumptions. With the victory of AKP with half of the votes on 12 nd of June 2011, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan remained as the Prime Minister for the third term and Ahmet Davutoğlu is going to work as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. There is no sigh that character or line of thought has changed. Rather, in his speech just after the victory of the elections, Erdoğan stated: Believe me, today Sarajevo winned as much as İstanbul; Beirut winned as much as İzmir; Damascus winned as much as Ankara; Ramallah, Nablus, Jenin, West Bank, Jerusalem, Gaza winned much 96
as Diyarbakır. Today, Middle East, Caucasus, Balkans and Europe winned as much as Turkey. Today peace, justice and stability winned as much as democracy and freedom. Erdoğan in the abovementioned speech did not highlighted cities –even did not mentioned onelike Brussels, London or Paris; but he mentioned cities in Balkans and Middle East. More specifically, he put emphasis on Middle East and listed major cities of Palestine. As stated before, Balkans and Middle East refer to the Ottoman heritage and indicates the neo-Ottoman diplomacy. Keeping in mind that the Turkey‟s Israeli relations are in one of the most problematic eras, his stress on the Palestinian cities must be well read. He aims to keep his popularity among the Arab world which he had reached its peak in the “one-minute” incident. It is not only adressing Arab world; but it is about embracing the Islamic states and highling the Muslim brotherhood. By this way, it can be said that he had drew the frame of the Turkey‟s identity path and Turkish foreign policy. It is acquired that he confirmed ongoing stance of Turkey is going to be preserved. The former Ottoman geography and the Islamic countries will be put emphasis and the commonalities between them and Turkey will be revealed. Contrary to the critiques to force the pace with EU, Erdoğan underlined the significance of the „rest‟, instead of the „West‟. To sum up, the individual level shows that the same pattern will be pursued by the leaders. When we come to the state level, we see that the reasons mentioned above are expected to continue. The Euro-skepticism does not seem to come to an end in the near future due to the continuing negative stance of the particular EU states. The economic performance of Turkey forecasted to improve in opposed to crisis-hit EU states. Embracing various modernities issue also seem to keep on with the activities of newly established institutes (Yunus Emre Institute and TRCA). Systemic image is the level where changes rarely occur. In other words, the demise of the bipolar world opened a new era and it is not simple for a tremendous change to occur once 97
more. Since the system remains the same, Turkey is expected to preserve its multi-dimensional foreign policy. To sum, it seems that Turkey is going to proceed constructing and projecting her identity in this way - at least in the short term. However, it does not mean that Turkey has turned down her back on West or EU. Neither has she denied the „Western values/identity‟. In fact, it is the „Western identity‟ which makes Turkey so unique and so appreciated in the neighbor regions. Her success lays in making democracy, secularism, human rights and Islam cohabit. Modern face of Turkey is the principal element that boosts her soft power. Turkey‟s EU vision locates as the point of attraction. Thus, relations with EU should remain as one of the primary issues in the foreign policy agenda. EU membership vision should not be underestimated.
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Yunus Emre Enstitüsü Başkanı Prof. Dr. Ali Fuat BİLKAN ile Görüşme Görüşmeyi gerçekleştiren: Çağlayan Çetin Çağlayan Çetin: İspanyolların Cervantes gibi, Almanların Goethe Enstitüsü gibi, Türkiye’nin de bir kültür enstitüsü olmalı tartışmaları bir süredir vardı. Yunus Emre Enstitüsü neden şimdi kuruldu? Neden şimdiye kadar kurulmadı? Şimdi kurulmuş olmasında Türkiye’de ve dünyadaki ne gibi gelişmeler etkili oldu? Prof. Dr. Ali Fuat Bilkan: Aslında bu yeni bir şey değil. Enstitünün kurulması veya Yunus Emre Vakfı‟nın bir enstitü kurması fikri çok önceden, yaklaşık 15 yıldır, belki daha da önceden beri, hep dillendirilen bir olaydı. “Niçin British Council, Cervantes gibi bir merkezimiz yok?” konusu çeşitli bakanların, devlet büyüklerimizin sürekli gündeme getirdikleri bir konuydu. Fakat şimdiki Cumhurbaşkanımızın Dışişleri Bakanı olduğu dönemde yoğunlaşan bir çalışmayla, Atilla Koç Bey‟in Kültür Bakanı olduğu dönemde, Mustafa İsen Bey‟in Kültür Bakanlığı Müsteşarı olduğu dönemde bu çalışmalar meclise taşındı. 5653 sayılı kanunla böyle bir vakıf kuruldu. Kuruldu ama bir seneye yakın, vakfın ne yapacağı, nasıl teşkilatlanacağı ile ilgili tereddütler meydana geldi. Tabi ki geç kalınmış bir proje. Bunu ben kabul ediyorum. Ama bunun direkt olarak Türkiye‟nin son dönemde gelişen dış politika argümanlarıyla tamamen ilintisiz olduğunu söylemek de yanlış olur. Türkiye son yıllarda yurtdışında ciddi anlamda politik duruş sergiledi. Onun da çok ciddi özellikleri var. Bu kurum bir kanun ile kuruldu. Bu kanunun amaç maddesinde “Türkiye‟yi, kültürel mirasını, Türk dilini, kültürünü, sanatını tanıtmak Türkiye‟nin diğer ülkelerle dostluğunu geliştirmek, kültürel alışverişini artırmak, bununla ilgili yurtiçi ve dışındaki bilgi ve belgeleri dünyanın istifadesine sunmak, Türk dili ve kültürü ile ilgili eğitim almak isteyenlere yurtdışında hizmet vermek” maddeleri yer alıyor. Bakın yurtdışında diyor, yurtiçinde demiyor. Orada bir vurgu var. Türkiye‟de Yunus Emre Araştırma Enstitüsü ve yurtdışında Yunus Emre Türk Kültür Merkezini açmak. Bu amaçla 112
Yunus Emre Vakfı bir enstitü açtı. Bu şuna benziyor: TOBB ETÜ nasıl bir vakfın kurduğu bir üniversite ise artık hiç kimse vakfın ismini zikretmiyor. Mesela TOBBEV diye bir vakfımız //var ama kimse vakfın adını bilmez. Veya Bilkent Vakfı‟nı ya da Sabancı Vakfı‟nı değil, Sabancı Üniversitesi‟ni bilinir. Vakıf, enstitüyü kurdu ve enstitü kısa zamanda önce Ankara Ulus‟taki tarihi bir binanın restorasyonu biter bitmez taşındık. Vakıf da bir devlet vakfı olduğu için, tamamen devlet denetimine tabi. Maliye Bakanlığı‟nın denetimi altında. Hatta biraz daha ileri bir denetleme mekanizması bulunuyor.
İktidar partisini temsilen bir kişi, ana muhalefet
partisini temsilen bir kişi, Dışişleri Bakanlığı‟nı temsilen bir kişi, Kültür Bakanlığı‟nı temsilen bir kişi ve maliye başmüfettişinden oluşan beş kişilik bir denetleme kurulu var. Ayrıca Vakıflar Genel Müdürlüğü‟nün denetimi var. Bir de özel şirket denetimi var. Yani vakıf bu noktada diğer vakıf ve kuruluşlara benzemeyen sivil bir denetime tabi. Mütevelli heyeti başkanı, Dışişleri Bakanı iken Sayın Abdullah Gül‟dü. Daha sonra Ali Babacan Bey, şimdi Ahmet Davutoğlu var. Toplam dört bakan bulunuyor. Evet, geç kalınmış bir proje; fakat bu geç kalmak bizim çok da önümüze bir engel olarak çıkmadı. Çünkü biz hızlı bir şekilde kurumsal kimliğimizi tamamlamak noktasında çalışmalara başladık. Arnavutluk‟ta Belçika‟da Bosna‟da merkezlerimi açtık.
Ben de bunu soracaktım. Yer seçimlerinde ilk olarak neye dikkat ettiniz? Nelere öncelik verdiniz? Öncelik ihtiyaçlara göre belirlendi. Bölgesel ihtiyaçlara bakıyoruz. Mesela, ilk kültür merkezini açtığımız yer Bosna Hersek. Saraybosna‟da açtık. Çünkü Bosna Hersek bizim kültür tarihimizin, kültür coğrafyamızın tabii bir uzantısı. Yani, bir insanın kıyıda kuma kendisi gömdürüp eline ta uzak bir yerden çıkarması gibi bir şey. O bedenin bir parçası. Kültür havzası var. Siyasi sınırlar var, bir de kültürel sınırlar var.
Kültürel sınırlarınız sizin Endonezya‟ya kadar da gider, Moğolistan‟a kadar da gider. Macaristan bizim kültür sınırlarımızın önemli bir merkezidir. Türkiye‟nin İslam coğrafyası, Türk coğrafyası… Dışişleri Bakanımızın güzel bir tanımı vardır. Diyor ki “Türkiye hem bir Kafkas ülkesidir, Karadeniz Ülkesidir, Orta Asya ülkesidir, hem bir Orta Doğu ülkesidir, bir Akdeniz ülkesidir, bir Balkan ülkesidir ve aynı zamanda bir Avrupa ülkesidir.” Dolayısıyla Türkiye‟nin konumu, Türkiye‟nin tarihi, Türkiye‟nin kültür coğrafyası, Türkiye‟nin tarihi hafızası bizi “Nerelerde, hangi ülkelerde başlayalım?” sorusuna karar vermede bir ölçüde zorluyor. Ama buna başlarken, görüyorsunuz sürekli karşımda tutuyorum listeyi. (Hemen karşıdaki beyaz tahtayı gösteriyor.) Mesela, Cakarta‟da açmak gerekiyor mu, Madrid‟de gerekiyor mu, Moskova‟da gerekiyor mu? Bunları sorgulamak gerekiyor. Çünkü biz Türk ve Akraba Topluluklara ya da İslam coğrafyasına hitap eden bir kurum değiliz. Öyle bir iddiamız yok. Onunla ilgili İslam Konferansı var, Yurtdışı Türkler ve Akraba Toplulukları Başkanlığı kuruldu. Ayni nakdi yardımlar, alt yapı yardımları, teknik yardımlar ile ilgili TİKA var. Fakat biz bir kültür merkeziyiz. Kültür merkezi olma hüviyetimiz; ırk, dil, din, coğrafya ayırt etmeksizin, Türk kültürünü, yemek kültürünü, sinema kültürünü, müziğini, plastik sanatları, tiyatrosunu, Türk dilini, edebiyatını, dünyanın dört bir tarafına, tanıtım amaçlı ya da o ülkelerde duyulan ihtiyaçlara cevap verecek biçimde ulaştırmak. Bunların içerisinde Peru da //var mesela. Bir ay içerisinde Peru-Lima‟da bir şube açıyoruz. Levhası bile hazır: “Lima Yunus Emre Türk Kültür Merkezi”.
Neden Peru’da peki? Diğer yerleri anlayabiliyorum, Balkan coğrafyası ya da Brüksel, Londra Türk yoğunluklu şehirler. Peru neden? Aslında ben de tam tersini düşünüyorum. Niçin Kazakistan, niçin kendi yakın coğrafyamızda oyalanıyoruz? Neticede Türkiye bu coğrafyada zaten Türk sinemasıyla, dizi filmleriyle, futbol takımıyla, yemek kültürüyle, Türkiye‟nin elli küsür ülkeyle yaptığı anlaşma gereği vizesiz 114
seyahatler zaten kendi kendini tanıtıyor. Yani Suriye‟ye kendimizi tanıtmalıyız ama Suriye zaten iki adımlık yer. Sabah gelip Gaziantep‟ten alışveriş yapıp arabalarını doldurup dönülebilinecek bir yer. Ama Peru öyle değil, Brezilya öyle değil, Çin, Endonezya öyle değil. Demek istediğim, bizim kendi kültür coğrafyamızda kendimizi bir taraftan tanıtırken bir de hiç gitmediğimiz, uğraşmadığımız, Türkiye ile ilgili hiçbir fikir sahibi olmayan başka ülkelerle, başka coğrafyalarda da tanışmamız gerekiyor. Bir taraftan kendi kültür coğrafyamız, bir taraftan büyük devletler ve dünya kültür başkentlerinde Türk kültürünün sergilenmesi; Paris, Londra, Brüksel, belki New York gibi . Buralarda olmamız çok önemli. Bir taraftan da Türkiye‟nin kendi kültürünü, sanatını hiç taşımadığı bazı ülkelerde tanıtım. Mesela şimdi elimde Estonya‟dan gelen bir yazı var. Estonya bizim için ne ifade ediyor etmiyor tartışılır ama Estonya‟da Tartu Üniversitesi Felsefe Fakültesi Dil Merkezi Bölüm Başkanı mektup yazmış ve mutlaka Tartu Üniversitesi‟nde bir Yunus Emre Kültür Merkezi açılmasını talep ediyor. Biz sadece gidip ülkelerde devasa binalar kiralayıp kültür merkezleri açmıyoruz. Biz aynı zamanda Türkçeyi de yabancı dil olarak öğretelim ve yabancı diller fakültesi içerisinde bir Türkçe kürsüsü de olsun taleplerini de karşılıyoruz ve buraya bir bütçe bağlıyoruz. Bunu için mesela Varşova Üniversitesi‟nde yeni bir yer açtık. Köln Üniversitesi‟nde açıyoruz. Protokoller senatodan geçiyor. Beyaz Rusya‟da bir yer açıyoruz. Estonya‟da bunu kabul edeceğiz. Peru‟da yine bir üniversite içerisinde, İnka Üniversitesi‟nde açıyoruz. Dolayısıyla bu model; sadece gidip güzel bir meydanda Yunus Emre Türk Kültür Merkezi açmak değil; aynı zamanda talepleri değerlendirmek. Bizden bu tür istekte bulunan kurum ve kuruluşların isteklerine duyarsız kalmamak durumundayız.
Enstitü amacı “Türk kültürünün, tarihinin, dilinin ve edebiyatının daha iyi tanıtılması ve öğretilmesi amacı”. Türk kültürü nedir, neleri kapsar? Bu konuda tartışma var. Türk kültürü ile tam olarak hangi alanları işaret ediyorsunuz? Aynı şekilde, Türk tarihinin
başlangıcı-sonu nedir? Türk kültürü derken çeşitli eleştirilere maruz kaldınız mı ya da bu konuda tartışmalar yapıldı mı? Nasıl tanımlarsınız? Benim alanım klasik dönem edebiyatı. Bütün yüksek lisans ve doktora çalışmalarımda 17.yy üzerine çalıştım. Dolayısıyla ben klasik metinleri de okuyup tarayabildiğim için kültür sürekliliğini daha yakından görebiliyorum. Türk kültürü, tarihin ilk dönemlerinden itibaren ürettiğimiz kültürdür. Bunu ne Osmanlı öncesi, ne Osmanlı sonrası diye dışlamak zorunda değiliz. Victor Hugo‟ya sormuşlar: “Romantizm 17.yüzyılda başladı üstadım ne diyorsunuz?” diye. Demiş ki “Yok ya, saat kaçta?”. Bunun gibi bir şey. İnsanoğlu //var olduğu günden itibaren bir kültür üretmiştir. Bu kültür; ırklar, coğrafyalar, çeşitli tarihsel süreçler diye birbirinden farklılaşmıştır. Bizim ilk yazılı kaynaklarımızdan itibaren, tarihte ilk görünür olduğumuz tarihten itibaren ürettiğimiz ortaya koyduğumuz bir kültür vardır. Din, edebiyat, sanat, kendimize özgü inanç ve yaşam tarzları… O süreklilik içerisinde görmek lazım bunu. Bana göre bunu bir yerde kesip bir yeri dışlamak ideolojiktir. Hangi türden olursa olsun. Yanlıştır. İdeolojiler hiçbir zaman kültürel hareketliği yönetmemelidir. Bu zararlı bir şey olur. Sizin bir şeyi reddetmeniz, o şeyin olmadığı anlamına gelmez. Siz Göktürkleri kabul etmeyin; sizin probleminiz. Göktürklerin bundan etkilenmesi mümkün değil. Onlar tarihte varlar. Osmanlı önce-sonrası tamamen ideolojikti. Bugün de o tartışmalar bu nitelikte. Osmanlı bir dönemdir, Selçuklu da bir dönemdir. Bizim medeniyetimizin aslında hamuru -pek bilinmez amaSelçuklar tarafından yoğrulmuştur. Osmanlı, Selçuklunun yoğurduğu hamur üzerine kurmuştur medeniyetini ya da kültürel dokusunu. Netice itibariyle Selçuklu bir uç beyidir Osmanlıda. Onu da kabul etmek gerekiyor. Fakat kültürel birikime dikkat ederseniz, özellikle 12. yüzyıldan sonra gelişen 13, 14, 15. yüzyıllara kadar gelişen yoğun mimari, musiki, edebiyat, sanat ve kültür zemininde Selçukluların muazzam bir birikimleri ve gayretleri var.
Bir de kültürü bu
şekilde sadece Osmanlı, Selçuklu, Anadolu, Cumhuriyet diye ayırmamak lazım. Örneğin Memlükler var. Türk bunlar. Türkçe, Kıpçak Türkçesi konuşuyorlar. Timurlar var, Şiban Han
var. Safeviler Türk zaten. Türkçe edebiyatları, şiirleri var. Şah İsmail‟in Türkçe divanı var. Bunu biliyoruz. Öte taraftan Babür devleti var. Babürlerin muazzam bir kültürü edebiyatı sanatı var. Dünya mimarisinde çok önemli bir yeri olan Tac Mahal gibi mimari eserleri var. Demek istediğim, bunu bir dönemle coğrafyayla sınırlamak doğru değil. O yüzden ben Türk kültürü tarihten görüldüğümüz ilk günden bugüne kadar oluşturduğumuz ve dünya medeniyetine eklemlediğimiz katkıda bulunduğumuz bütün bir maddi manevi somut soyut kültür varlıkları olarak görüyorum.
Yurtdışındaki faaliyetlerinizde nasıl yansıtıyorsunuz bu kültürü? Bir yanda son dönemde çıkan Türk filmleri festivali yapılıyor, öbür yandan hat, ebru, tezhip gibi faaliyetler yapılıyor. Hangi tarafa ağırlık veriliyor? Her ülke, her coğrafya, hatta ülkedeki bölgeler veya şehirler bile farklı bir kültür faaliyeti veya felsefesi ya da refleksi ihtiyacı doğuruyor. Yani sizin Şam‟da yapacağınız kültür faaliyeti ile Halep‟te, Tiran ile İşkodra‟da yapacağınız faaliyet fark ediyor.
Neye göre fark ediyor? Orada yaşayan nüfus bunu belirliyor. Mesela siz Bükreş‟te daha ziyade Romanyalı ya da Romen vatandaşlara yönelik çalışma yapabilirsiniz. Ama Köstence‟de Türk azınlık var, Türk azınlığın ihtiyaçları var. Priştina‟da Arnavut vatandaşların yoğun olduğu bir yer. Onlarla daha ziyade ortak kültür değerleri üzerine bir şeyler yapabilirsiniz veya Türkiye‟yi tanıtırsınız. Ama Prizren‟de Türk çocukların folklor ihtiyaçları, Türkçe şarkı, korolar kurma, tiyatro grubu kurma ihtiyaçları var. Farklı coğrafyalarda, ülkelerde, bölgelerde, şehirlerde çok farklı talepler var. Bosna Hersek‟te yapacağınız faaliyet ile Hırvatistan‟da yapacağınız faaliyet arasında farklar var. Hırvatistan‟da modern Türkiye‟yi tanıtmak zorundasınız. Ama Bosna‟da bir Müslüman 117
kitle //var ve Boşnaklar bizimle ortak kültür değerlerine sahip insanlar. Ebru öğrenmek istiyorlar, Türkçe şiir okumak istiyorlar. Öbür tarafta Hırvatistan‟da belki Türkçe daha ziyada sektörel öğretilebilir. Hırvatistan, Türklerin son zamanlarda tatil beldesi olarak gördüğü ülkelerden biri. Suriye‟de iş için Türkçe öğrenen bir çoğunluk var. Biz bunların hepsinin istatistiklerinin çıkarıyoruz. Niçin Türkçe öğrenmek istediklerini araştırıyoruz. Mesela Bosna Hersek Tuzla‟da bir şişecam fabrikası açılıyor ve orada iş bulmak için ciddi bir Türkçe öğrenme talebi çıkıyor. Türkçe öğrenmeyi artık bir kültürü başka bir kültür üzerine yaymak diye algılamamak lazım. Çok yanlış olur. Dünyada ekonomik kaygılar birçok şeyi belirliyor aslında. Bunu biz de görüyoruz. Fakat sadece ekonomik kaygıların belirleyici olduğunu söylemek de yanlış. Çünkü bazen çok yoksul bir ülke, bir müzikle, bir kültür programıyla çok ön plana çıkabiliyor. Biz yıllarca Brezilya dizileri izledik. Bugün de Ortadoğu, Uzak doğu, Orta Asya, Balkanlar, Türk dizileri izliyorlar. Geçenlerde Makedonya Kültür Bakanı‟yla bir görüşmem vardı. “Ben Binbir Gece‟ye hayranım hep seyrediyorum” dedi. Ben Binbir Gece‟yi hiç seyretmemiştim. Bu konuda o bölgenin, o coğrafyanın sizden beklentileri önemli. O coğrafyaya elbette modern Türkiye‟nin gücünü, imkanlarını, turizm bölgelerini anlatmak gerekir. Sadece o bölgede gidip bir ebru kursu ya da resim sergisi açmıyoruz. Aynı zamanda Türkiye‟yi bir eğitim adası haline getirmek için Türk üniversitelerinin broşürlerini eğitim sergilerine katılarak buralarda sergiliyoruz. Türkiye‟de dünyanın dört bir tarafına eğitim için koşturan gençler niçin Türkiye‟yi tercih etmesinler? Türkiye‟de de yabancı dil eğitimi var. Gelirler, daha iyi bir imkânla Türkiye‟de eğitim görürler. Önümüzdeki günlerde Türkiye‟deki tatil yörelerinin belli başlı yerleri tanıtım broşürlerini de kendi merkezimizde barındıracağız. Türk Hava Yolları, TOBB, Kültür ve Turizm Bakanlığı sponsorlarımız arasında. Dolayısıyla bu sene yaklaşık iki yüz civarında Türkçe öğrenen genci bütün masraflarını ödeyerek Türkiye‟ye tatil amaçlı getireceğiz. Yaklaşık yirmi üniversite ile anlaştık. Onlar kampüslerini açacaklar. Yirmişer, otuzar kişi alacağız. Mesela Eskişehir Anadolu Üniversitesi, Türk Folklor grupları oynayan
öğrencileri ağırlayacak. İstanbul Üniversitesi, Selçuk Üniversitesi, Nevşehir Üniversitesi, Çankırı Üniversitesi ile anlaşmalar yaptık. Mesela Çankırı‟ya Amerikalıları getireceğiz. Türkiye‟deki tabii hayatı, köy hayatını görecekler. İmece usulünü, insanları, kültürü, dokuyu tanıyacaklar. Herhangi bir batı ülkesindeki batı tarzıyla bizim büyük şehirlerimiz arasında fark kalmadı artık. Nevşehir‟e özellikle arkeoloji okuyan öğrencileri göndereceğiz. Topyekûn bütün kurumlarla bir şeyler yapmaya çalışıyoruz. O yüzden ihtiyaçlara, taleplere, ülkemizden beklentilere bakıyoruz. O ülkelerde, mesela Balkanlarda ciddi bir işsizlik söz konusu. Bizim politikamızın bir tarafı da bu insanlara acaba nasıl bir teknik eğitim imkânı sağlayabiliriz diye düşünmek. Bizdeki İşkur‟la, Kosgep‟le, Tika‟yla bunlara teknik ara eleman yetiştirme konusunda bazı imkânlar sağlayabilir miyiz? Bu doğrudan bizim görev alanımız olmayabilir. Ancak, siz doktor değilsiniz ve yanınızda bir insan yere düşerse doktor olup olmanız önemli değildir. Sizin ona yardıma koşmanız gerekiyor.
Kültürü öğrenmeden, dizilerden bahsettik. Kurumun internet sayfasını inceledim. Bültenlerinizde Türkçe öğrenenlerin çok fazla nedeni //var deniyor. Örneğin kimi Türk biriyle evlenmek için, kimi Türkçe müzikleri, dizileri anlamak için Türkçe öğrenmeye başlamış. Bu şekilde kültürel entegrasyon sağlanabilir mi sizce? Batı’da //var olan “biz ve Müslümanlar” ya da İslam coğrafyasında //var olan “biz ve Batı” ayrımı kırılabilir mi sizce? Ya da en baştan böyle bir ayrımın olduğunu kabul eder misiniz? Biz ve ötekiler diye bir şeye ben inanmıyorum. İnsanlar birbirlerini tanıdıkça ortaklıklar benzer yönler fark ediyorlar. Ancak genel olarak böyle bir algı mutlaka var. Bizim coğrafyamıza yönelik çok daha farklı şeyler var. Benim Amerika‟da tanıştığım bir Ermeni arkadaşım, “Türkiye‟de bir süre kalabilir miyim?” diye bana sordu. Ermeni ama Amerikalı, Amerika‟da yaşıyor. Ben de memnuniyetle kabul ettim. Türkiye‟de misafir ettim. Gitmek istediği yerleri, Sivas, Urfa, Mardin…dolaştırdık. Amerika‟ya döneceği sırada bana enteresan bir şey söyledi: “Bizim hiç problemimiz yok aslında. Birbirimize çok benziyoruz” dedi. Bakın bu çok enteresan. Hatta bana “dağın öteki yüzü diye bir resim sergisi açsak, Türk ve Ermeni ressamları 119
bir araya getirsek” diye bir teklifte bulundu. Bu arkadaşım mühendisken Ermeni cemaati onu antropoloji okumaya ikna etmiş. Antropoloji okuyordu, doktorasını yapıyordu. Ve belki Türkiye çalışmaları konusunda çok sivri yetiştireleceği bir rol üstlenecekti. Fakat bu insan bile Türkiye‟yi, Türk insanını tanıdıktan sonra düşünceleri değişti. Bu insanı Urfa‟da damda yatırmışlar. Çiğköfteler, kebaplar, ayranlar… İnsanlar misafirimiz diye ağırlamış ve hiç dışlanmamış. Ondaki algı “Bunlar babalarımızı kestiler, dedelerimizi kestiler” şeklindeydi. Düşmanlık ve kin olsa, o kin devam ederdi mutlaka. İnsanlar tuhaf karşılarlardı, resmi davranırlardı. Olmadı. Kendi evinde misafir etmiş, otele bırakmamış, arabasıyla dolaştırmış vesaire. Bunu gördükten sonra bir şeyler kırılıyor. Biz de aynı durumdayız. Benim Amerikalı arkadaşlarım var. Buraya geldiklerinde burada kalmak, buraya yerleşmek, Türklerle evlenmek isteyenler oldu. Baktım ki bir Amerika yok, birkaç Amerika var. Bir Fransa yok, birkaç Fransa var. Bir Türkiye yok, birkaç Türkiye var. Bizim o tek boyutlu Türkiye algısını “Hayır, sizin o bildiğiniz Türkiye sadece şuralarda çıkan, çocukların taş attığı, polislerin göz yaşartıcı bombalarla karşılık verdiği görüntüler değil” dememiz gerekiyor. Türkiye‟nin kıyıları var, Türkiye‟nin İstanbul‟u var. Türkiye‟nin gazeteleri var, aydınları var, modern yüzü, modern hayatı var. Birkaç mevsim gibi birkaç Türkiye var. Bu çeşitliliği en azından gösterebilirsek, o tek boyutlu Türkiye algısını kırabilirsek “ben Türkiye‟yi böyle bilmiyordum” deyip dönenler daha da artacaktır. Geçen gün Washington‟da bir toplantıda yanıma biri geldi. Teksas‟ta senatörmüş. “Ben Hıristiyanlığı Türklerden öğrendim. İzmir‟de dolaştım, Efes‟i, Meryem Ana‟yı dolaştım. Dinimle ilgili bilgiyi, tarihimizi oradan öğrendim” dedi. O yüzden bu ülkeye ne kadar çok gazeteci, aydın, yazar, ressam, şair, üniversite öğrencisi, doktora öğrencisi, akademisyen varsa, bu ülkenin böyle tek boyutlu bir ülke olmadığını, tek bir yüzünün olmadığını, çok fazla okunabildiğini ve okumalara açık olduğunu gösterebilirlerse, o kadar puan kazanırız.
Bahsettiğiniz çok karakterli yapısından dolayı Türkiye’ye gelenlerin Türkiye algıları da değişiyor, İslam dünyası ile ilgili algıları da değişiyor diyebilir miyiz? Biz sık sık yurtdışına gittiğimiz için daha iyi gözlemliyoruz yabancıların bakışlarını. Siz gelmeden önce Amerika‟da bir akademisyene bir mail atıyordum. New York‟ta Seton Hall diye bir diplomasi okulu var. Bana “Ben bir sonraki toplantının Londra‟da olmasını değil; İstanbul‟da olmasını diliyorum. Bu konuda da ısrar edeceğim” diye yazmış. Çünkü biz orada resmi toplantı dışındaki saatlerde de hep şunu konuştuk: “Türkiye Ortadoğu için çok çok önemli bir modeldir”. Amerika‟daki aydınların zihninde bu oturmuş bir şey. Neden? Bir taraftan Müslümanlık İslamiyet var, bir taraftan da modern hayatı yaşama özgürlüğü var. Ve o özgürlüğü insanlar yüz yıldır yaşıyorlar. Bakmayın Cumhuriyet‟ten önce de, Tanzimat‟tan itibaren, onlarda olmayan ama bizde olan haklar vardı. Belçika‟ya, Fransa‟ya Almanya‟ya bir Türk‟ün gidip yerleşmesi için hala çok ciddi engeller var. Dilden şu puan alınacak, bu şartlar yerine getirilecek. Türkiye‟de böyle bir şey yok. İnsanlar geliyorlar, örneğin Antalya‟dan ev alıyorlar. Kıyılara, Fethiye‟ye bir İngiliz aile yazın geliyor, üç dört ay kalıyor. Hatta muhtar oluyorlar. Ruslar, İngilizler, çok sayıda Alman muhtarlığı kazandılar. Biz Türkiye‟yi görmüyoruz. Biraz haksızlık ediyoruz kendimize. Dünyaya çıktığınızda çok daha fazla tedirginlik yaşıyorsunuz. Amerika‟da bir vize başvurusu yaptığınızda, psikolojik bir baskı çekiyorsunuz. Burada iki dakika kuyrukta bekleyen insan sabırsızlanıyor, polise saldırıyor. Ama Amerika‟da yaşlı genç iki saat ve ayakta bekliyor. Bu ülkeye haksızlık etmemek lazım. Bu coğrafyada muazzam bir şey bu. Çünkü bu coğrafyada Mısır olmak vardı kaderde, Suriye, Cezayir, İran olmak vardı. Ama olmadı burası; Türkiye Cumhuriyeti oldu. Cumhuriyeti ve Cumhuriyet‟in ürettiği değerleri ortaya koyduğu, insanımıza kazandırdığı erdemleri bence çok iyi algılamak lazım. Çünkü o ülkelere gittiğinizde burayı görüyorsunuz.
Ben de geçen ay Belçika’ya gittim. Arkadaşlarımı ziyaret etmek için bir haftalık bir fırsatım oldu. Vize almakta gerçekten çok zorlandım. Ailemin tüm malvarlığına kadar, her şeyi 121
gösterdim. En sonunda vize aldım. Bu sefer de “Döndüğünüz zaman elçiliğe uğrayın, döndüğünüzü kanıtlamak için imza atın.” dediler. Sanki gözaltındaymışım gibi, terörist gibi kendimi çok kötü hissetmiştim. Ve burası Avrupa Birliği‟nin başkenti. Bence Türk aydının bu “biz adam olmayız, bak adamlar yapmış” kompleksinden çıkması lazım. Fransa‟ya gittiğinizde sizi kuyruğa diziyorlar, köpekler vesaireler ile. İngiltere‟de ülkeden ayrılırken bütün güvenlik şeritlerinden geçtikten sonra THY‟nin kapısında beklerken gelip köpeklerle çantalarınızı yokluyorlar. Bizim bu ülkeye inanmamız lazım. Başka türlü olmayacak.
Bu açıdan bakıldığında Huntington’ın “Bir medeniyet dönüşümü geçirmek isteyen Türkiye, katılmak istediği medeniyet tarafından reddedilmektedir.” sözünü nasıl değerlendiriyorsunuz? Son dönem AB ilişkileriyle bunu ilişkilendirebilir miyiz? AB konusunun Türkiye‟de çok abartıldığına inananlardanım. AB aşırı derecede sanki bir milat gibi algılanıyor. Bu siyasi, kültürel, daha ziyade ekonomik – zaten mantığı ve kuruluşu itibariyle ekonomik bir oluşum. Ekonomik işbirliğine katılmak isteyenler için bir kulübe aday olmak gibi bir şey. Kulübe aday olmak istediğinizde sizden bir takım belgeleri, fotoğrafınızı, banka hesaplarınızı, mal varlığınızı getirmenizi isterler. Bu da onun gibi. Türkiye bu şartları yerine getirirse burada yer alır. Ama bu şartları yerine getirmezse burada yer almaz. Türkiye 200 yıldır batı dünyasının normlarına ve çağdaş dünyanın normlarına uyum sağlama evresi geçiriyor. Bu cumhuriyetle başlamadı. Bu II. Mahmut‟la beraber belki, ondan evvel de vardı belki. II. Mahmut‟la beraber hızlandı, bunu kabul etmek lazım. Pantolonu ilk giyen padişah, düşünün. Fatih resmini yaptırıyor Batılı ressamın karşısında. Devlet dairelerine II. Mahmut resmini astırıyor. Bunlar çok enteresan şeyler ve iki yüz sene evvel olan değişimler. Türkiye bu değişimleri niye yaşadı, niye yapıyor? Türkiye bu coğrafya itibariyle kendi bünyesinde bulunan farklı din, dil, kültür, ırk mensuplarının daha özgür bir ortamda yaşaması için peş peşe bir çok kanun çıkardı. Tanzimat bunlardan biridir. Azınlıklara verilen haklar, Tanzimat‟la verilen 122
haklar, şimdi Yunanistan‟da Türklere verilmemiştir. Bizim Tanzimat‟la gerçekleştirdiğimiz devrim pek çok yerde yok. Sadece Türkler için demiyorum, köle gibi çalıştırdıkları sonra başlarına bela edip geri kovamadıkları Afrikalı azınlıkları hala üçüncü sınıf insan gibi görüyorlar. Bir medeniyet çatışması yaratılmak isteniyor. Bu doğrudur. Vardır demiyorum. Yaratılmak isteniyor. Bu yapılan bir şey. Olan bir şey değil.
Sürekli bunun dillendirilmesi, bir proje gibi diyorsunuz. Huntington‟ın Medeniyetler Çatışması tezini aslında siyasi bir çerçevede görmek lazım. Aslında başta Amerika‟nın çektiği bir grubun ve dünyada çok sayıda mensubu olan bir bloğun bunu sürekli dillendirdiğini ve şuur altında bunu gizlediğini görüyoruz. Haçlı Seferi diye adlandırıldı ilk Irak saldırıları. Amerika‟nın Irak‟a savaş açmasına Sarkozy de Haçlı Seferi dedi. Batının şuur altında böyle bir zihniyet mevcut. Dünyayı sürekli iki kutbun çatışmasına doğru çekmek isteyen, hala o haçlı seferi zihniyeti. Çünkü Haçlı Seferi‟nde Doğu ve Batı vardı. Doğu zındıktı, ezilmesi gerekiyordu, yok edilmesi gerekiyordu. Bir de Batı medeniyeti vardı. Doğu ile Batı arasında bir mücadele vardı. Şimdi iki kutuplu dünyadan koptuk diyorlar. Rusya‟nın Glasnost‟sundan, Perestroika‟sından sonra, iki kutuplu dünya olmadan dengeyi kuramayacakları ve bir düşman olmadan hiçbir güç ve kudret sergileyemeyeceğini bildiği için, Batı dünyası, karşısında bir kutup oluşturmak istiyor. O düzene mi alışılmış? Evet, Amerikalılar böyle bir zihni kurguya sahiptir. Bir düşman algısı olacak. Askeriyede vardır: mavi kuvvetler, kırmızı kuvvetler. Üçüncü bir kuvvet yoktur. Hani bir de sarı kuvvet araya girsin, onları uzlaştırsın diye bir şey yok. Mavi ve kırmızıdır; başka bir şey yok. Bu algı yanlıştır. Dünyada bu algıyı yıkmak isteyen çok sayıda aktör de vardır. Türkiye‟nin İspanya ile başlattığı şu anda Bekir Karlı Bey‟in başında olduğu İstanbul‟da böyle bir kurum var. Bence 123
bunun yolu algıda değişiklik yaratmaktır. Yeni nesil bunları çok daha rahat görebiliyor. Çünkü artık internet çağında insanların gidip bir ülkeyi gezmesi de gerekmiyor. Belgesellerden, internetten haberleşip anlıyorsunuz. Kamboçya‟daki insanlık dışı zulmü bir cep telefonu kamerası çekip tüm dünyaya yayabiliyor. Ya da Mısır‟daki insan hakları ihlalini, Suriye‟deki ayaklanmanın izlerini yayabiliyor. Bu medeniyetler çekişmesi veya medeniyetler çatışmasına karşı yapılacak en önemli şey; çeşitliliği hala yaşıyor, hala içimizde o çeşitliliği hala barındırıyoruz mesajı vermektir. Biz bununla ilgili mesela Yunus Emre olarak Belçika‟da yakında bir sergi açıyoruz. Belçika‟nın en büyük kültür vakfı Bozar ve Belçika Kraliyet Vakfı ile birlikte ortaklaşa açacağız. Türkiye‟deki gayri Müslimlerin günlük hayatlarını ve dini ritüellerini tek tek resimledik ve belgesele dönüştürdük. Bunu önce Avrupa Parlamentosu‟nda açacağız. Avrupa Parlamentosu‟nda açtıktan sonra Bozar‟daki büyük sergi alanında sergileyeceğiz. Türkiye biraz tabii çevresi ile ilgilenmeye başladıktan sonra şunu da fark etti: Musevi Türkler var, Gagauz ya da Litvanya civarında Karaimler var. Hıristiyan Türkler var. Müslümanlar arasında çok farklı mezhepler gruplar inançlar ritüeller var. Türkiye‟de Süryaniler var. Hem de Güneydoğu‟da yaşıyorlar; dini ve etnik bağların en güçlü olduğu yerde. Bu insanlara belki bin senedir tahammül kültürü geliştirmişiz. Yerelleştirmişiz. Bayramda aynı Müslümanlar gibi sarılıyorlar, ayakkabılarını çıkarıp kiliselere giriyorlar. Bu medeniyetler çatışması tezi bana göre kıyamet senaryosuna bütün bir toplumu insanlığı hazırlama, o işi çabuklaştırma, hız kazandırma konusunda yapılmış hamlelerdi. Bu süreç kesinlikle tabii değildir. Çünkü biz birbirimizi tanıdıkça, birbirimize daha fazla yakınlık hissediyoruz. Yunan adalarında günlük teknelerle, alışverişini, yeşilliğini alıp geri dönen insanlar var. Kimsenin kimse ile doğal ortam içerisinde bir problemi yok. Ama problem oluşturma, problem yapma konusunda aktörler //var diye düşünüyorum.
Yani artık iki kutuplu dünya ya da Batı medeniyeti tarzı modernleşmenin değil kendi içimizde de çeşitliliğin doğması ve bir nevi kendi standartlarını oluşturması söz konusu diyebilir miyiz? İnanılmaz derecede birbirimize benzedik zaten. Örneğin Polonya‟ya gittiğinizde öğle yemeği için McDonalds arıyorsunuz. Niye? McDonalds‟ı Türkiye‟den biliyorsunuz, daha yakın geliyor. Bilmemiz gereken nokta şu: İnsanlar gerçekten birbirine çok benzedi. Bu globalleşen dünya deniyor. Çeşitli kavramlar kullanılıyor; küreselleşen dünya, köyleşen dünya, iletişim araçları, internet... Düşüncede de kadın hakları, çocuk hakları, çocuk istismarı, kadına şiddet, insanların çevre sorunlarına duyarlılığı, trafik kurallarında anında birilerinin yaptığı hataları anında bildirme konularında hassasiyetler… Artık global sorunların global çözümlere ihtiyaç duyduğu dönemdeyiz. Giyim kuşamdan, yeme içme kültürüne kadar, Amerikalının bizden farklı bir yaşam tarzı yok. Arabasına biniyor, araba markası aynı, iş yerine gidiyor, kahvesini içiyor, biz de çay kahve içiyoruz, öğlen toplantısına gidiyor. Biz de aynı şeyi yapıyoruz. Bunu çok büyütmemek lazım. Gittikçe birbirine benzeyen hayat tarzları gelişiyor. Bu benzerlik öyle bir yere gelecek ki insanlar birbirlerini daha kolay anlayabilecekler. Bizim de bir farkımız yok aslında. Biz de böyle yaşıyoruz.
Günlük yaşamda şu an hepimiz aynı şekilde yaşıyoruz ama yine de Türk kültürü farklı bir şey olduğu için tanıtıyoruz. Değerler kalmıyor. Dünya birbirine benzerken değerler kalmıyor. Bu farklılık bazen insanın kimliğini ortaya koyan ve insana haz veren bir özellik taşıyor. Hep aynı yemeği yiyen, mesela hep pizza yiyen bir insanın bir ölçüde bir mahkûmun hayatından farklı olmadığı kanaatindeyim. Mahkûma tek yemek getirilir ve ne getirilse onu yer. Biz o çeşitliliği, o zenginliği, farklı kültürleri, birbirine benzeyen ama benzemeyen; fakat benzemediği yönüyle de cazip olan yönü çıkarmaya çalışıyoruz. Kültür politikaları da cazibeye dayanıyor alsında. Kamu
diplomasisinin anahtar kelimesi cazibe oluşturmaktır. Bir ülkenin, başka bir ülke, başka bir coğrafya, başa bir toplum, başka bir kültür üzerine cazibe oluşturmasıdır. Öyle tanımlıyoruz. Çok teşekkür ederim zamanınızı ayırdığınız için. Çok sağolun. Ben teşekkür ederim. Size çalışmalarınızda kolaylıklar diliyorum.
20.Nisan.2011, TOBB Ekonomi ve Teknoloji Üniversitesi, ANKARA
Explaining the Change in Turkey's Identity ... - Open Access Home
Explaining the Change in Turkey’s Identity Question in the European Union Accession Process: A Levels of Analysis Approach
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Organization,‖ http://www.who.int/healthsystems/topics/financing/healthreport/30C-sectioncosts.pdf. (April 5, 2011). ...... 203 For information about the politics of reproduction regarding ethnic identity, see Seçkin Kazak,. ―Anneliğin ...... 284 İlh
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