In this piece, I will attempt to answer the question that I asked in last week’s column, in which I tried to assess the French approach toward Turkey. I will elaborate on the general view of the Western countries toward Turkey by answering the following questions: Why has the West been otherizing and alienating Turkey? What are the main sources of anti-Turkish sentiments in the West? Why is the West concerned about the democratic institutions in Muslim countries? Is the rise of Turkophobia related to the most recent wave of Islamophobia? Why is the West against the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government? Are they worried about the rise of the Turkish state?
For the last decade, the main concern of Turkish foreign policy has been the crises in the Middle East and North Africa, which include threats emanating from different terrorist groups and state failures as a result of Arab insurgencies. Ankara, however, has been spending its energy on its relations with Western countries, especially France and the United States, rather than on these crises. Nowadays, many observers both from inside and outside the nation have been trying to answer the question, “What does the West want from Turkey?” In this piece, I will try to trace the roots of Paris' approach toward Ankara.
One of the main reasons for Greece’s anti-Turkish policies is the dramatic change in the balance of power between Turkey and Greece. Turkey began to play in the upper league and became a major regional power. Therefore, Greece has been trying to prevent the further rise of Turkish power in the region, and for this reason, it is insistently trying to provoke Turkey and push it over its limits.