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Author: Prof. Ilter Turan (Prof. Ilter Turan)

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An unbridgeable divide?

While everyone agrees that for Turkey and the U.S. to improve relations, the two must sit down and hash out their differences, some fundamental, and seemingly intransigent issues stand in the way of even beginning a process of reconciliation. What are the key issues that divide the two and how can they be overcome? Adnan...

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The geopolitics of vaccines

As the world desperately looks for an end to the coronavirus pandemic, vaccines have turned from a distant hope to present reality and now to a frenzied, grab-what-youcan free for all. The first signs that vaccine distribution would be plagued with power imbalances came after Pfizer announced successful third phase trials for its mRNA vaccine....

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The decree trap

Last week the presidency of Joseph R. Biden began in the U.S with a flurry of executive orders. America has never before witnessed such a robust exercise of presidential power: in a single day, 17 executive orders ranging from the environment to immigration. The previous record was one. Increasingly, as American politics descends deeper into...

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Sanctions on the horizon?

Last week, EU members met in Brussels to discuss a host of issues the Union faces in 2021. Sanctions against Turkey were on the table, ostensibly to punish it for what some members claim are its “illegal activities” in the Eastern Mediterranean. But unity in the Union is in short supply these days. The Greek...

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In-fighting in NATO

Last week’s meeting of NATO foreign ministers was supposed to address the alliance’s future and ways for it to stay relevant. Instead, it devolved into an acrimonious exchange of grievances, reinforcing the internal cleavages that plague it. Turkey was at the heart of the controversy, with outgoing U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo lashing out...

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Is This Really About Libya?

Last week’s run-in between a Turkey-flagged cargo ship and an EU maritime patrol, part of Operation IRINI set up to enforce the arms embargo on Libya, demonstrated once again that tensions on the Mediterranean Sea, far from easing, are deepening to worrisome levels. The issues are complex and Libya, a conflict that has exposed fault...

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Making sense of America

To put it diplomatically, the Trump administration, from the day it took office, has been unusual. No less so the transfer of power, if we can call it that. Since the presidential election was called in Joe Biden’s favor, Trump and his cohorts have acted in ways more akin to a dictatorship, refusing to concede...

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Who wins in Nagorno-Karabakh?

The end of hostilities marks a potentially historic moment in the decades-old conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan. If the peace agreement holds, the major players in the region will all, to one degree or another, have achieved their goals, and what appears to be a loss suffered by the Armenians may translate into a win...

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In the U.S., a successful election but little solace

The U.S. elections may be over but the political turmoil that has roiled the world’s most powerful nation are really only beginning. For many observers, regardless of who won, the fact that the results were so close, dragging on for days, was the worst possible outcome. The uncertainty and instability will no doubt be felt...

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France, Islam and strategic nuance

The furor over Islam and its place in France is reaching unprecedented levels of acrimony in the aftermath of now two terrorist attacks that have left four dead. The hostilities were sparked after the satirical magazine, Charlie Hebdo, re-published cartoons of the prophet Muhammad at the beginning of September, the same cartoons that led to...