Turkish Foreign Policy in a Transatlantic Context: A Case for Soft Power and Public Diplomacy

Part of the Palgrave Macmillan Series in Global Public Diplomacy book series (GPD)


The end of the Cold War did not bring about an immediate, major change in Turkey’s foreign policy. Despite the surprising collapse of the bipolar international structure and the following outbreak of ethnic and religious wars in the surrounding regions from the Balkans to the Caucasus, the transformation of Turkey’s foreign policy has been gradual for two principal reasons. First of all, Turkey, situated at the intersection of highly unstable geopolitical areas, continued to follow the traditional Kemalist dictum of foreign policy, “peace at home, peace in the world.” The underlying logic of this policy denotes multilateralism in diplomacy with active participation in international institutions, observance of international law, and more importantly a noninvolvement strategy with the internal affairs of the neighboring countries. These core principles provided the Turkish policy makers a basis for a coolheaded approach toward the radical changes in the aftermath of the Cold War. The second reason that made Turkey adopt a gradual strategy of change in foreign policy relates to its capacity and its capabilities, particularly in terms of influencing political shifts among neighboring countries. Turkey was, neither militarily nor economically, strong enough to benefit extensively from the emerging opportunities by the end of the Cold War. Its recently liberalized economy was still vulnerable to outside shocks.


Foreign Policy Middle East Soft Power National Power European Neighborhood Policy 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© B. Senem Çevik and Philip Seib 2015

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