Cover: The Future of Turkish-Western Relations

The Future of Turkish-Western Relations

Toward A Strategic Plan

Published 2000

by Zalmay Khalilzad, Ian O. Lesser, F. Stephen Larrabee


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At the European Union's Helsinki Summit in December 1999, Turkey was declared a candidate for EU membership. But European and U.S. stakes in Turkey continue to evolve in today's post-Cold War era, influenced in no small part by Turkey's geopolitical position as a pivotal state. The United States is concerned with Turkish support for U.S. freedom of action in key regions, and Turkey wants to ensure that it will have EU and U.S. assistance in managing its own regional challenges. The Future of Turkish-Western Relations explores the significance of changes on the Turkish domestic scene, as well as the contours of Ankara's increasingly active external policies. The report goes on to discuss Western stakes in the future of a changing Turkey. The authors offer an agenda for closer strategic cooperation in the U.S.-Turkish-European triangle, focusing on key issues such as relations with Russia, energy security, containing weapons proliferation risks in the Middle East, and reinforcing Turkish convergence with the European Union.

The research described in this report was sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation and RAND's Center for Middle East Public Policy (CMEPP). The research was conducted within the International Security and Defense Policy Center of RAND's RAND National Security Research Division.

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