Turkey’s Hard Choices in Syria and Iraq

Turkish foreign policy appears compartmentalized for the foreseeable future: in Syria, Ankara will prioritize securing its borders from the emerging threat of a Syrian Kurdistan (also known as Rojava) by cooperating with Moscow; in Iraq, it will seek US support against both the PKK and the Shia militias of the Popular Mobilization Forces. However, while appearing practical, such compartmentalization will pose significant challenges for Turkish influence. READ MORE

Turkey and the Gulf Crisis: Erdogan’s Most Difficult Game?

The Saudi-led campaign against Qatar has put Turkey in a difficult position due to Turkey’s increasingly warm relations with Saudi Arabia over its Syria and Iraq policies. There are three major drivers that shape Ankara’s policy toward the Gulf crisis: (1) fear that the allegations against Qatar, such as supporting the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, could be directed at the Turkish government in the long term; (2) financial concerns that stem from Turkey’s increasingly fragile economy; and, (3) potential harmful consequences regarding Turkish calculations in Syria and Iraq. READ MORE