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Since the end of the Cold War, and perhaps even the early days of the Turkish Republic, there have rarely been so many open questions regarding Turkey's role in the world. What is Turkey's place in Eu-rope, NATO, and the E.U.? What risks and opportunities exist for Turkey in a conflict-ridden Middle East? How will Ankara deal with a changing Russia, an unstable Caucasus, and Central Asia? Can Turkey's competitive relationship with Greece be moderated against a back-ground of successive Balkan crises? Meanwhile, Turkey faces daunting political, economic, and social pressures at home, which in turn affect the country's foreign and security policies. The authors, longtime observers of Turkey and the Mediterranean region, describe the challenges and opportunities facing Turkey in the international environment during a time of extraordinary flux. Special emphasis is given to the strategic and security issues facing Turkey, including a number of new issues posed by the terrorist attacks of September 2001 and the subsequent international response. The authors conclude by offering some prognostications regarding the country's future and their implications on Turkey's western partners.

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Table of Contents

  • Summary PDF

  • Preface

    All Prefatory Materials PDF

  • Chapter One

    Introduction: Turkish Foreign Policy in Transition PDF

  • Chapter Two

    The Changing Domestic Context PDF

  • Chapter Three

    Turkey and Europe PDF

  • Chapter Four

    Relations with Greece and the Balkans PDF

  • Chapter Five

    Turkey and Eurasia PDF

  • Chapter Six

    The Middle East and the Mediterranean PDF

  • Chapter Seven

    Turkey and the United States PDF

  • Chapter Eight

    Conclusion PDF

  • Supplemental

    Supplementary Materials PDF

Book Review Excerpts

"The uncertainty of Turkish foreign policy in the 1990s and the first three years of the 21st century is even more uncertain after the 2003 U.S.- and British-led war against Iraq, especially in the five areas the authors emphasize: Europe, Greece and the Balkans, Eurasia, the Middle East and the Mediterranean, and the U.S.… Despite Larrabee and Lesser's failure to predict that Turkey would not participate and would only lukewarmly support the U.S.-led war against Iraq and the resultant dramatic changes in the geopolitics of the regions they analyze, this remains the best overview of the Turkey's foreign policy in the regions discussed. Highly recommended. Public libraries and upper-division undergraduate collections."

- CHOICE Magazine

"The future of U.S.-Turkish relations remains in doubt after the difficult negotiations between the Turkish government and the United States over air base usage during the war with Iraq. This event marked a turning point in a pivotal geo-political alliance with a country that, to most Americans, remains largely unknown. F. Stephen Larrabee and Ian Lesser, senior political analysts at RAND, shed light on this increasingly influential country in their book, 'Turkish Foreign Policy In An Age Of Uncertainty', which describes the challenges and opportunities facing Turkey during this time of extraordinary change. Special emphasis is given to strategic and security matters, including those sparked by the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the subsequent international response. The book concludes with some predictions for the country's future and their implications for Turkey's western allies."

- NationalJournal.com

"In a competent and compact survey of contemporary Turkish foreign policy that gives due emphasis to its multilateral dimensions, both domestic and foreign, Larrabee and Lesser treat separately Turkish foreign relations with the European Union, Greece and the Balkans, Eurasia, the Middle East, and the United States while managing to interrelate these separate subjects. They have taken recent studies (including their own) and effectively updated accounts of several aspects of Turkish foreign policy, including the slow and by no means assured Turkish effort to join the EU, the tentatively better relations with Greece, and the still unresolved issue of Cyprus, the on-balance slight Turkish advances into Central Asia since the end of the Cold War, Turkish-Israeli ties, the serious Turkish concern about the Kurds in Turkey and beyond, and Turkey's complex relations with the United States."

- Foreign Affairs

The research described in this report was prepared for RAND's Center for Middle East Public Policy under the auspices of RAND's National Security Research Division.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation monograph report series. The monograph/report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1993 to 2003. RAND monograph/reports presented major research findings that addressed the challenges facing the public and private sectors. They included executive summaries, technical documentation, and synthesis pieces.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.