Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The illusion of Greek-Turkish friendship Part One

Over the last few weeks much has been written in the Greek press and amongst more ‘serious’ commentators about the appointment of Professor Ahmet Davutoglu as the Foreign Minister of Turkey. Antipodes also wrote about him here.

Dr Ioannis Mazis, Professor of Geopolitics and Economic
Geography at the Ionian University, which Antipodes has posted excerpts from previous pieces here, recently wrote an article on the Greek reactions to Davotuglu’s appointment which appeared on the website of ERT3 talk show Anixneusis.

Mazis writes that Greeks generally reacted in the most ‘ostrich way possible' by referencing selectively certain readings from his books; particularly, in regards to his view of “zero friction with neighbours Turkey”. However, Mazis writes that these commentators have failed to understand who
Davutoglu means when he writes about “neighbours” because judging by what Davutoglu writes, Greece and Cyprusshould not be included as ‘neighbours”.

Mazis then selects excerpts from Davutoglu's book
entitled, "Stratejik Derinlik" or better known in English as "Strategic Depth", first published in 2001, which refutes the conclusions (inferred from their selective readings) reached by some Greek commentators. A careful analysis of Davutoglu's writings may also provide some clues as to Turkey's strategic direction over the next 10-15 years. Antipodes provides the first of a two part series of translations for its readers below:
Page 174:

(The latest developments have shown that) the U.S., in creating a dynamic relationship between their policies for Eastern Europe and the Middle East, they are seeking to have control of the Hinterland of Europe and to fill the geopolitical vacuum that occurred in the Balkans-Middle East axis after the dissolution of Soviet. Union. The Aegean Sea and Cyprus are two important parts due to the line Eastern Europe-Middle East in terms of a land connection and the Adriatic-East Mediterranean-Gulf in terms of a sea connection.

Page 175:

(. ...) In this strategic plan, the Cyprus issue will come to the forefront in a more active way. (....)
Today, the Eastern Europe-Balkan-Adriatic-Aegean-East Mediterranean-Middle East and Gulf area is forming a very dynamic interaction. (....)

On this line which unifies the Balkans to the Middle East will be the inevitable development of a new plan.

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