Erdogan’s moves, a serious decision or an electoral game?







* Ghassan Al-Istanbuli



We must admit that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was able, during his assumption of the Turkish decision-making position, to invest in the international contradictions well, as he was able to play on the ropes of conflicting countries, depending on the urgent need for most countries of the world for the Turkish role, and that For several reasons, foremost of which is its geopolitical position, and perhaps these reasons would raise Turkey to the ranks of the great countries, if it had leaders who were loyal to their homeland and worked for it, more than their loyalty and work for the benefit of a person, party or sect.

There is no doubt that the global crises, especially after the start of the Russian military operation in Ukraine, made all eyes focus on the Turkish role and all hands, especially the Russian and American ones, are trying to pull Turkey to be closer to it, especially as the world is moving fast not only to change the old blocs but to change the geographical and political structure, this change is faster than the decision makers in those countries expect.

In light of this global upheaval, and with the ropes stretched to Turkey, with the decline of the Turkish economic situation, and the approaching presidential elections, the Turkish president has to determine his options. Such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt and others, but this is not enough, as these steps are not effective, and do not express the direction of the compass that will guide him, and therefore we see American pressure on the man through several painful joints, such as the Greek joint, and the joint of American support for the Kurdish factions in northeastern Syria And even extending for the Americans to have hands in areas under absolute Turkish control in northern Syria, in order to form a rebel force against any Turkish decision to rapprochement with Syria. American obedience, if successful, would have dealt an effective blow at the same time to Russia, Turkey and Iran.

We also see the Russian pressure, which seems to be ahead of the American pressure, perhaps because of the different style of both countries. At a time when Russia follows the method of reward and punishment in its international relations, we see that the American method depends only on pressure, threat and punishment.

With Erdogan in particular, it seems that the Russian method, which was supported by the theory of strategic patience, has begun to give its effects, as evidenced by the latter’s fulfillment of a number of Russian desires, such as his accession to the Shanghai Organization and his retreat from supporting the Azeri war with Armenia, and his position reaching an acceptable point regarding the Russian operation in Ukraine, as well as not being swayed by US desires regarding restricting the movement of Russian aircraft in Turkish airspace, and restricting Russian navigation in the waters and straits that are subject to the Turkish decision.

As for the real knot for Erdogan, it is the Syrian issue, due to the high ceiling of the wishes he wished and worked to achieve, which made him the most prominent party in the war on Syria, and the Turkish role in this war is known to all.

Now, after Erdogan’s failure to achieve his war goals, and after this failure reflected on the Turkish situation in general, and on his popularity in particular, which might prevent him from winning the upcoming elections, Russian President Vladimir Putin stepped forward to play the Syrian card, certainly for the common interest of both Syria, Russia and Turkey, if Erdogan continues to walk honestly in this file, and what gives cause for optimism are the repeated positive statements of senior Turkish officials, including Erdogan personally, which indicate Ankara’s desire for rapprochement with Damascus.
What is certain is that there are security meetings between the Syrian and Turkish states, and there are leaks about upcoming meetings at the level of their foreign ministers. The two states, the first of which comes with the Syrian clause that requires the withdrawal of the Turkish army from all the occupied Syrian lands, in addition to other reciprocal clauses, but they are less difficult and will go well if this clause is agreed upon. The first Syrian condition during the remainder of his presidency? And if he cannot, does Syria trust that Erdogan will complete the implementation of the withdrawal, if he wins the next elections? Can Russia guarantee Erdogan’s implementation of the terms of the agreement after the elections? All these questions and others are answered by someone who is fully aware of the extent and effectiveness of the Russian restrictions put in place by Putin on the night of Erdogan’s arrest.

* A Syrian writer and political researcher.


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