Muhittin Ataman

Director, Foreign Policy & Editor-in-chief, Insight Turkey
Prof. Ataman graduated from the Faculty of Political Science in the Department of International Relations at Ankara University. Ataman earned his MA at Central Oklahoma University, and PhD at University of Kentucky between 1996 and 1999. He worked as an RA and a faculty member afterwards in the Department of International Relations at Abant İzzet Baysal University from 1993 until 2014. Ataman is currently a faculty member at the Faculty of Political Science in the Department of International Relations at Social Sciences University of Ankara. Prof. Ataman worked at SETA for three years as a part-time researcher in Foreign Policy Research Department. Currently, he serves as SETA's Director of Foreign Policy Studies and conducts academic research on Turkish foreign policy, the Middle East politics and the Gulf politics. Ataman is also the Editor-in-Chief of Insight Turkey, a journal published by SETA Foundation.

Directors

  • Turkey's decision to purchase Russian S-400 air defense system has become a major sticking point with the U.S. While Turkey attaches great importance to procuring the air defense system, U.S. policymakers, who consider Turkey's decision a complete deviation from its traditional alliance system, have begun to threaten the country.
  • The Middle East has been experiencing turmoil since the Arab Spring uprisings and revolutions. A process of counterrevolution started with the military coup in Egypt in 2013. Much of the regional mayhem stems from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Saudi-led efforts to reverse the democratization process initiated with the Arab uprisings and discourage any popular demands.
  • The government sees the post-election years as an opportunity to follow a more proactive foreign policy and implement structural reforms in the economy
  • What is the context of the decision? What does this decision mean for Israel and for Netanyahu? What are the possible implications of the decision?
  • When the French and the British carved up the Middle East, the Golan Heights was part of the French mandate. It was not part of the Palestinian territories, where the Israelis claimed their authority. And after the mandate was abolished for the current nation-states, the Golan Heights was naturally left for Syria.