The Americans, with the assistance of the British, have long wanted to anchor Turkey to 'the West' by manoeuvring it into the EU. This is a forlorn enterprise, not only because Turkey's entry would pervert the European project and will never be accepted by France, Germany and others; but also because Turkey is incapable in the foreseeable future of abandoning its authoritarian hyper-nationalist quasi-fascistic political system and the ideology that underpins it and embrace the kind of liberal democracy that characterises every other EU country.
With Turkey's EU desires unfulfilled, the Anglo-American fear has been that the Turks will turn to Iran, Pakistan and Syria for economic and political alliance and add to the instability in a variety of regions; but perhaps more likely is that proving itself unfit to join the EU, Turkey will turn to Russia and the economic union it is trying to create with a number of former Soviet Union countries.
Certainly, if the speech given earlier this week in Constantinople to a Turkish think tank by Sergei Markov, an advisor to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, is anything to go by, Russia would like nothing more than to provide Turkey with an alternative political and economic future.
Here are excerpts from Markov's speech as reported in Zaman:
'Markov warned that Turkey should not rely on the EU because it will not accept Turkey as a full member. He said Turkey could still have relations with the EU and continue to have its NATO role.'
'The Russian and Turkish economies are compatible and their “political cultures have similarities.” He said Turkey and Russia would complement each other in many areas. “We have energy for Turkey’s needs. We have many construction opportunities for Turkish firms. We need labor, and Turkey can provide it,” he commented.'
'He also said that Turkey’s Caucasus initiative has a chance of success if it includes Russia and excludes the United States. “The United States is a dangerous power. The neocons in Washington are the main threat to international stability.”'
Read the whole thing here.