No more Cold War
This issue Turkish Review focuses on Turkey’s neighbour across the Black Sea, Russia, with a series of articles on Ankara’s relations with Moscow and the former Soviet states.
The first article comes from Dr. Lerna Yanık of İstanbul’s Kadir Has University, who examines the history and current day business relations between Turkey and Russia. In recent years in particular, economic considerations have kept any criticism between the two states extremely muted; whether current tensions over Syria will change this pattern remains in the balance. Dr. Ayşem Biriz Karaçay (Koç University), meanwhile, looks at migration patterns between the two states, the role of pioneer migrants in particular.
Energy is a key tie between the two countries, and a report from Danila Bochkarev of the EastWest Institute examines the latest in a series of energy projects linking Ankara and Moscow -- Turkish Stream -- and the likely role played by Brussels in the project’s ultimate success (or otherwise).
Looking beyond Russia itself, Jane and Raphael Bernstein Professor of Asian Studies and History at Carleton College Adeeb Khalid provides a detailed account of the relationship between Islam and the state in Central Asia. While religious extremism does exist in Central Asia, Prof. Khalid warns that “discourses of danger” only serve to exaggerate the threat of such extremism and conceal the authoritarianism of local regimes.
A final feature on Russo-Turkish relations comes in the form of Two Views, which this issue asks Halil Akıncı, a former Turkish ambassador to Russia, and Assoc. Prof. Alexander Sotnichenko from the School of International Relations, Saint Petersburg State University, to share their thoughts on the two states’ ties.
Also in this issue, Prof. Mohammad-Reza Djalili (Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies of Geneva) and Prof. Thierry Kellner (Université Libre de Bruxelles) reveal the “fiction and reality” of the rise of Iran in the Middle East, and ask whether the signing of the nuclear agreement between Tehran and the P5+1 is likely to contribute to a shift in Iran’s regional policy.
Moving to the domestic agenda: June saw Turkey hold a general election that dramatically changed Parliament’s composition but left the parties elected unable to broker a power-sharing deal. The country is therefore heading back to the ballot box on Nov. 1. Both Think Tank Tracker and the Last Word (the latter with Assoc. Prof Erik Tillman of DePaul University) look at the significance and the implications of the June elections for democracy in Turkey.
And finally, this issue includes photos commemorating those who lost their lives in a series of bombings in Turkey this year. Turkish Review celebrates the resilience of the survivors, mourns the departed and joins voices with all those demanding peace, right now.