NSM

The fourth Nordic conference on Middle Eastern Studies:
The Middle East in globalizing world
Oslo, 13-16 August 1998


The new alliance: Turkey and Israel

Is it a course towards new division of the Middle East?


Akram T. Hawas
Aalborg University


In April 1996, Turkey and Israel had 'surprisingly' recognized that they have actually concluded a military agreement which gives both countries the right to use each other's atmospheres to air force training. As usual some of the countries in the Middle East reacted quickly to express suspicions about the real goals behind this new 'military bloc'. Most of the reactions were emotional, but Iran and Syria expressed unease, and Egypt expressed skepticism. Later on Jordan declared that it was joining the new bloc, whereas nothing practical seemed done by the other countries to face this alliance. Neither USA [1] nor any other Western country expressed any immediate position, which perhaps could be conceived as an acceptance. Nor was there any reaction from Russia.

Questions should be raised: Considering that the peace process was somehow far-reaching and the efforts of the USA seemed to be on the right course to set up a new and peaceful Middle East; why was such a new military bloc established then? What were Turkey's and Israel's purposes and objectives? Why did the Western countries not express any posture; did they actually not care about it? [2]

In fact, the agreement was originally concluded on March 23, 1996, and it was declared officially in the beginning of April. As both the Israeli and the Turkish officials have asserted that the agreement was not a military bloc, nor was it directed against any countries, an explanation tended to see the agreement not as a mere outcome of the Al-Sharm el-Shaikh Summit, [3] but as a part of a larger strategy towards Syria, Greece, and Iran.. The active Turkish participation in that summit and Demirel's following trip to Israel were two evidences of a new and hard Turkish policy based on national and economic security considerations, where the Kurdish crisis, which was estimated to cost the country about 8 billion dollars annually, [4] was seen as one of the most serious challenge to the Turkish government's efforts to transform Turkey to be an economic superpower in the Middle East. Another explanation indicated that the agreement was perhaps responding to the renewed military agreement between Syria and Greece; the traditional enemies of Turkey, thus, the Turkish-Greek confrontation would then exceed the low-level of disputes and would be accentuated projecting historical conflicts: Hellenic-Ottoman or Christian-Islamic confrontation. [5]

However, insisting that, the agreement with Israel was not much different compared with similar former agreements with Arab countries like Iraq, Saudi-Arabia, Jordan and Libya, Turkish officials showed a tendency to put pressure on Syria regarding the accusations of support to the Kurdish Movement: Syria might choose between its relations with Turkey and its protection of PKK's leader Ugelan. At the same time, Turkey had refused any attempt to regionalisation the water-disputes considering that the Arab countries have no rights to intervene in this problem. On the other hand, most of the Arab countries accused Israel of disrupting the peace process by establishing a new military bloc in the region. Simultaneously, the relations between Turkey and some of the Arab countries like Syria and Iraq and some Islamic countries like Iran experienced tensions. Internal tension especially in Turkey was also an aspect of reactions towards the military agreement with Israel. In this context, the personal attentat against Demirel's life [6] has been connected to the theory that Israel's last assault on South Lebanon (Qana), where hundreds of civilians were killed, was a result of the military agreement.

The objectives of this paper

This paper is seeking to test the military cooperation between Turkey and Israel in the context and the opportunities of globalizing the Middle Eastern structure of relations: Why was this 'alliance' being possible and necessary, and how it could contribute in restructuring the region? The paper is seeking to explore some of the reasons behind the new military alliance. Considering the relations between the internal development strategy and the international system, it seems that the new military alliance was not necessarily a disruption of the peace process Israel/Palestine, but on the contrary an integrated part of it with some structural changes projecting to stifle and suppress the contra-forces internally and externally. Among the external target groups were: Iran and its allies, the Hisbullah militants in Lebanon, the Palestinians Islamic groups, the unclear Syrian position on the peace-process, as well as the PKK's positions in Turkey.

On the national level, the alliance was projecting the nature of intra-social and political relations in the Israeli and the Turkish societies. Undoubtedly both societies were experiencing severe division; in Israel because of the peace-process, and in Turkey because of the controversial view on Islam and the Islamic World and the relations with the West. The new military alliance could be seen as projecting the globalization of national crises, or in other words a rational attempt to solve domestic social, economic and political crises within a regional network of economic expansionism, where the role of the military power experiences an essential transformation in its nature from self-defence to a guarantee for economic expansionism.

However, the objective of this paper is to contribute to the discussion of the new role of the military power on the national plan of Third World countries. The paper seeks to prove that in light of the new structure of international relations, some selected countries in the Third World can improve their national economic, political, and social conditions through regional economic expansion secured by sophisticated military power. The role of military power is in no way a return of colonialism, but to function as an overbearing body that by permanent threats to suppress any antagonistic action and to secure the articulation of the resources and opening of markets externally. It is, basically an attempt at imposing coercive hegemony.

Methodologically, my point of departure is at the level of regional actors. This is in contrast to Realism and other schools of international politics, whose level of analysis relates mostly to the world powers. Furthermore, I will examine the impact of internal changes on the state's apparatus in Turkey and Israel.

The paper has six sections: The first section includes the introduction and the objectives of the paper. The second section, Old Rules, New Potentials, is a theoretical discussion of the potentials, which the structure of the so-called New World Order offers for small countries who seek to secure their interests. The third section, Old Ambitions, seeks to show that Turkey and Israel had have historical ambitions, which have not been realized. By exploiting the new potentials, these two countries tried to realize those old ambitions. The fourth section, Internal Developments, concentrates on the internal evolution that necessitated the realization of these old ambitions as well as the start to a new project of economic development. The fifth section, A Common Project, is a problematization of the Turkish-Israeli military agreement which, depending on the new evolutions in the international environment, aimed to realize the old ambitions based on structural adjustments with regard to internal and regional developments. Finally the sixth section, Conclusion, sums up the former sections and examines the possibility for realizing the project.

Old rules, new potentials

Central to the realist approach, are concepts like actor state, power, national objectives, military. The state is seen as a rational actor in bringing security and securing national sovereignty through its impact on international relations, which only can be set up by power politics. In the last instance, war is a clash of opposing wills, with power as the only key element that can bring victory. Military power is as determining as any other capabilities like economy, technology, diplomacy, international status etc. The Cold War was a complex of all these factors. But as the two world superpowers had nuclear capability, war was no longer an option, nevertheless accumulation of the capabilities of power, including the arms race, was evidence for the rational role of the state actor. [7]

As the Cold War was over, the structure of international relations was also experiencing changes. The Neo-realists consider the new world order on the basis of the same principles; 'The new pattern is a combination of several poles of power, a single dominant ideology and a single dominant coalition. This combination defines a new international order that can usefully be seen as structured along centre-periphery lines'. Here two changes can be observed: Firstly, 'the organisational structure of global management is still confused; secondly, 'aid (economic) is no longer easily available for strategic reasons. [8] This means that clients can no longer depend on their former patrons.

Obviously, the conditions of the Cold War necessitated a long range of commitment by the superpowers towards their proxies in order to hold on to them as allies. One of these proxies was Turkey, which received essential economic aid and political support from the USA in order to keep its position as the south wing of NATO to confront any Soviet expansionist potential. Israel was another proxy with the duty to preserve Western, mainly USA's economic interests in the Middle East and in the Gulf region.

However, although Israel was still receiving American economic aid as well as political support, USA's growing presence in the Arab countries in the aftermath of the Second Gulf War had perhaps resulted in a relative reduction of Israel's importance. Because, as its economy was in decline, the world superpower, USA, might so take over a big part of the job by itself. On the other hand, Turkey's importance was also experiencing a decline as the Soviet threat was no longer valid. This meant that the country could not count on any direct rescue from the USA. Under the emergence of the New World Order, the hegemony of the superpower USA is no longer able to secure the interests of each client country, nor can it homogenize the world. In return, as it is no longer willing to provide economic aid, USA's unipolar hegemony provides the opportunity for its former allies to seek securing their own interests as they can. [9] This is perhaps one of the new main elements in the New World Order: Every single country is seen to be free to secure its own interests. The only condition is not to challenge the world system, or in other words, securing the interests of countries must not be at the expense of the interests and superiority of the world hegemon, the USA. What is essential in the new order is the stability of the world system and the commitment to preserve American hegemony, not necessarily a common parameter for development in the whole world, nor a more fair distribution of the world resources. This can be seen as a new phase in the process of unequal development of the world capitalist system. [10] In a world of capital expansionism that perpetuates unequal development, the only logical model is the development of the stronger while leaving the weaker in a category that can be politely called underdevelopment.

Thus, a sort of selective stability gives the powerful allies of the USA the right to expand at the expense of the weak and the 'defected' countries. [11] In the light of this structure of relations, it was perhaps quite appropriate for countries like Turkey and Israel to follow the pattern of the world hegemon and play the game of securing their own national interests also by exporting their national crises. In a system, like the world capitalist system, where the values of moral and justice [12] have no place, the military threats remain the only and the most practical guarantee not only for the survival of the system itself but also for any successful operation within its context. [13]

Supposedly, without such a military power Iraq would never have given up its occupation of Kuwait, nor could democracy have been reinserted in Haiti. Also when Israel agrees to give up territories in Gaza and the West Bank, its deportment might be seen as a response to the violent Intifada and not least the intensive military actions of the Islamic groups. Even economic sanctions, as the new innovation of the international system to impose changes on single countries, can never be effective without military observance.

The importance of the military boom is undoubtedly essential to support the economic expansion, because without it, economic corporations remain exposed to antagonism of the contra-forces either by sabotage or by seeking counter-bloc. [14] In fact a parameter of international relations, i.e., to secure the interests of all partners is not born yet. Coercion is therefore still necessary when consent is absent. Since the end of the Second World War, military power is still the only guarantee for economic and political flourishing. Japan's and Germany's economic powers have flourished under the American military protection. Now when these two countries are in economic conflicts with the USA, they are well under way to reconsider their military position.

What we actually have experienced in the aftermath of the Cold War was not a really demilitarization process of the world super military powers as it has been expected. [15] In some countries, it was in fact a process of transforming the nature of the military tenets in the domain of both mobilization and weapons from accumulated quantity to selected quality. France's insistency on conducting nuclear testing followed by changes in its mobilisation methods was significant evidence of a new qualitative military competition. The difficulties in the international negotiations to stop nuclear testing and expansion are other signs, where the less developed countries like India and Pakistan desire a common pledge by all counties to reduce their nuclear arsenals. To India it seems that the demilitarization process was but a trick by which the most sophisticated nuclear countries sought to dismantle any challenge to their military dominance. [16] In the world of today, the new role of military power is in no way defined by traditional issues like security. Nor has it much to do with democracy, while some scholars emphasize its negative impact. [17] It seems the negative impact can both be economic, because of the high level of military expenditure, defence-budget; and political, because when the army has no external enemy, internal societal interference can be an attractive gaol. It seems also that military power is under way to possess a 'productive' role and have a positive impact in securing the outwarded economic expansion. This is not new to the history of the superpowers, because colonization and imperialism might have already signified the central role of military as a productive factor for their economies. In contrast, it would be a new phenomenon in the history of the Third World countries since the establishing of the world capitalist system. Iraq was expelled out of Kuwait because it used the traditional methods of colonization and because it challenged the world system and dissatisfied the world hegemon. Israel and Turkey were not placed in the same categorization and would use different methods. Turkey and Israel were two countries with tight relations with the USA, and then they had to take initiative to seek to secure their national interests by their own capabilities in the Middle East: a rich region characterized by both resources and crises, where the majority are Arab and Muslim countries.

A partnership of economic cooperation with the Arab and the Islamic countries in the region, needs a non-antagonistic atmosphere of relations. Both Turkey's and Israel's relations with their neighbour countries were constantly lacking such a non-antagonistic atmosphere: As the bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel have been shaped by a kind of mutual understanding [18] since the demise of the Ottoman Empire and the Holocaust and later the establishment of the state of Israel, both the Turks and the Israelis may be quite convinced that in acceptance by the Arabic and the Islamic masses was still far from being reached. These masses cannot be satisfied as long as what they fought for in the last several decades is not achieved yet. [19] History is still the major contributor to form the consciousness and the attitude of these masses. In the Turkish example, although they share the same religion, the bad and bloody memories of the Ottoman Era are still shaping the minds of these masses: The attempts to 'Turkicization' of the non-Turks and the brutal suppressing of the Arab nationalists especially in Syria and Lebanon; of the Kurd nationalists in the whole region; and of the Shiite-Muslims in the Arabic Peninsula and Iraq. In the Israeli example, the heritage is even heavier: The relations are dominated by the logic of revenge and resistance.

On the other hand, countries like Iran, Iraq, Egypt, Saudi-Arabia (only relatively) and Syria have likewise regional ambitions of hegemony and economic cooperation projects, which have caused more antagonisms between regional states rather than cooperation potentials.

However, in the light of all these realities, and in order to secure its national interests in the context of the rules of the world system, it was quite legitimate for Israel and Turkey to use coercion. This was accentuated by the fact that Shimon Peres' [20] vision of the project of a Middle East Economic Market was rejected outright by some Arab countries and Iran, while other countries were sceptical. Even Egypt had reservations. [21]

In fact, the role of the military power has never been absent from Israeli strategy towards the Arab countries in the Middle East. Although it usually refuses to recognize that it possesses nuclear capability, Israel has actually rejected signing the international treaty on nuclear proliferation. Despite Arab and especially Egyptian appeals to the USA to put pressure on Israel to open its arsenals to international inspections, it still rejects any discussions of the subject. However, the essential transformation in the nature of the Israeli military doctrine is seemingly, that its role is no longer merely to protect the existence of Israel from any Arab 'invasion' and secure it as a state in the Middle East, but to work for its economic expansionism in the region. (see later on Israel's ambitions) Similarly, the Turkish military which had the duty to safeguard the south wing of NATO from any Soviet invasion and to secure Turkey's unity against the Kurdish separatists, was now to fulfil the tasks of securing the regional economic expansionism of the country.

Old ambitions

When Turkey joined the NATO in 1952, its priorities were seemingly based on a dream that the military regime was to play a greater role in the Middle East in order to prove that the successors of the Ottoman Empire were not less effective. The dream was to regenerate the overthrown empire perhaps on new conditions and with the help of those who actually eroded and destroyed the Empire, i.e. the Europeans. When Ataturk adopted secularism and replaced Arabic letters with Latin in the Turkish language, he expected that these procedures would open the door to the European house and to prove that the Turks were still able to do more than what they did before; the Turks can enter Europe from the backstage avoiding any European antagonism. [22] Thus, the huge wave of the Turkish labour emigration to Europe in the 1960's and the early 1970's were perhaps the tools by which the Turks aimed to create a new reality in the European political and social structure: By effective participation in the European economic machinery, this civil invasion aimed to consolidate and legitimize Turkey's efforts to be adopted by Europe.

However, these dreams created a tradition within the military institution of Turkey, and consolidated its position as the absolute societal force, whose authority determines the capacity of manoeuvre of the political elite both what concerns domestic and foreign policies. The political elite can only act when the military institution is satisfied. That means in areas where the military institution is opposed to policies, the political elite is actually paralyzed. One important aspect of this paralysis was the disability of the political elite to carry out any successful economic policies. [23]

Similar to Turkey, the political life in Israel is also dominated by a strong military tradition. The power of Israeli military institution stems from the history of the state, which was established in 1947 as a result of the efforts of the Zionist para-military organizations cleansing Palestinian-Arab areas and replacing them with imported Jews from all over the world, in order to impose the new state as a reality. But this state has always been rejected and suspected by its neighbours, the Arab countries. This posture has strengthened the position of the military institution; the organization of the army which waged four wars against the Arabs in order to force the Arab to accept it as a member state of the Middle East. The war struggle for legitimacy has been the doctrine that shaped and still shapes not only the attitude of the Zionist organizations and the military institution, but also the discourse of the political elite. Based on the historical passions of the Jews in the ancient of the East but in the modern history in the West, where the term of anti-Semitic was born and where the Holocaust took place, the only logic that determines the consciousness of Israelis is the necessity of strength; in order to impose your own state and to force the others to accept Israel. Thus, the dream of Greater Israel [24] might be seen as a product of this doctrine. But although Israel, since its establishment, and depending on the West particular by the USA, has been the strongest state in the Middle East, it had not been managed to realize the project of Great Israel yet. What is important here is that, in order to be the strongest, Israel has always allied itself with those stronger outsiders who have interests in the region. Thus, Israel's permanent allied was/is the American superpower. In its efforts to secure its interests, Washington has always faced antagonism in the region, therefore it had/has to have permanent military threat, either indirect through proxies like Israel and Iran under the Shah, or its own forces as now.

However, as far as Turkish ambitions to play a greater role in the Middle East and perhaps in the world are concerned, Europe plays an important role. Since the establishment of the European Community, Turkey has applied for membership several times, but all applications have been rejected on different grounds: Sometimes economic reasons and other times new issues like the development of democratic institutions and the violations of human rights are invoked by Brussels. However, this was/is not the only defeat in seeking to play a greater role. Nor has membership in NATO offered Turkey the opportunity to play a hegemonic role in the Middle East. Under the Shah, Iran was preferred by the US to exercise regional hegemony in the Middle East. After the fall of the Shah, the Western countries supported Iraq to dominate the Gulf region, and Israel was strengthened by the US. During the Gulf crises, Turkey offered the Western-led alliance the use of its bases in the military offensive and control of the economic sanctions against Iraq, and also to offer the Iraqi Kurds the secure zone in Iraqi Kurdistan. As a result Turkey lost the earnings from the Iraqi oil export through its territories, while its project to be the motherland of all Kurds has been rejected. [25] But Western economic aid was not increased

Internal developments

Although Kemal Ataturk and his followers clearly visualized a secular, Western-style, mixed economy and democratic polity, [26] the Turkish state's intervention was intensive in the societal relations. With its objective to secularize society, the state projected structural as well as social changes in the society; people were no longer allowed to wear their traditional costume, which was to be replaced with modern Western style; the Kurdish language was totally forbidden not only in the cities, but also in the villages and even among family-members. In fact the clause of democracy was put in cold water, and the actual characteristics of 'the Kemalist state was undoubtedly authoritarian and totalitarian'. [27] After the reimposition of the parliamentary system, developments in the post-1980 military coup have, however, seen an ease of state intervention in societal relations. [28] This course actually opened the door for many oppositional forces within the structure of the society to express different attitudes rather than those which defined by the state. This has been the reason for a new set of tensions in the society. In 1983, Turket Uzal became first prime minister after the reimposition of a parliamentary system in Turkey. Later on he became president. He aimed to modernize the country by converging religion and modernization, conservatism and nationalism. Uzal projected also creating stability in the society based on a peaceful solution of the Kurdish problem. But it seems that his project had embarrassed both the military as well as the political elite: his project was conceived as an attempt to transcend Ataturkism and to build a new Ottomanism to give Turkey a leading role in the Middle East. [29]

However, developments in the post-1980 coup created a course of new relations between the state and the masses. The focus on the triad: secularism-nationalism-Westernization has actually deepened the chasm between what the state was projecting and how the social development has taken place. Due to the Islamic traditions, the people rejected this project. Significance for this rejection is seen in the growing Islamic Movement both in the form of the democratic-parliamentary aspect, the Islamic Party and the Welfare Party, and in the form of Islamic militant organizations like Hizbullah-Turkey. The repeated anti-state demonstrations and the social unrest are also signs of this chasm. [30] The state/society dichotomy can also be related to a complex of political instability based on crisis of identity and elite monopoly. [31] A significance for that was the cabinet-formation process in the aftermath of the last general election is a good and clear example of the influence of the military institution. Although the Welfare Party, which propagated Islamic positions, won the election, it was immediately been restrained to form a mini-cabinet, and then when it managed to form a coalition with Ciller's party, this coalition has been forced to resign and the Welfare Party has been dissolved.

On the other hand, as already mentioned, in Israel, like in Turkey, there is also a rigid and influential military institution. The political elite is not able to act without regard to the view of the military. [32] A difference can be found in the stage of societal intervention. In contrast to the wide societal intervention of the Turkish military, as emphasized above, it is necessary to underline that the degree of political democracy in Israel has always limited the role of the military to national defence and strategic policies. This difference might be seen as the result of the historical role of the two military institutions: In Turkey, the military played a great role in reforming the national identity [33] of the Turks as a new nation after the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire. In Israel, as the Jews were already organized in the Zionist organizations, the military role was defined by the creation of the territorial structure of the state of Israel. Nevertheless, as a response to the desires of the military and the political pressure of religious-Zionist groupings, the political elite is sharply divided on the peace process. In return this has created a social-political division in society. The military institution and the religious-Zionist grouping are influenced by a certain kind of xenophobia expressed in mistrust to all others than Jews. [34] Historically, the military desires have been translated into an ideology and an action of revenge. Simultaneously, these xenophobia and mistrusts of anyone have also shaped the definition of who is really Jewish, [35] which in turn created sharp discriminations within the Israeli social structure. [36] The white and European immigrated Jews are favoured and they actually dominate the political as well as the military domains. The Oriental Jews including those who actually were the original inhabitants of Palestine before the establishment of the state of Israel are less favoured. [37] Meanwhile, the black Falasha Jews from Ethiopia and the black Jews from USA whose origins are in Africa, they are generally excluded from any political influence as well as any social position; in fact they are excluded from the economic privileges like housing and jobs, which immigrants normally be privileged; they are marginalized and live in containers in extremely unsatisfactory social and health conditions; their future is vague or perhaps they are without any future prospects, as long as their children have no access to schools. [38] This is only one small aspect of the split in the Israeli social structure. The main and the sharpest division is actually grounded in the duality created by the peace process. That is the duality between the complex of xenophobia, mistrust, revenge, the Greater Israel and God's Best Nation on the one side, and the peace agreement which demands trust, cooperation, stability and security for all on the other side. In practice these requirements need ideological change as well as territory concessions.

The explicit expression of the enormous difficulties which cause the realization of these changes almost impossible, is exemplified by the breaking of the Jewish religious taboo by a young student of law who killed Prime Minister Rabin. The recent general election and its result support this argument.

To go back to the developments in Turkey, the view of the Kurds is the most essential issue, where disagreement between the military institution and the political elite, can be assessed. For a long time, since the dispersion of the Ottoman Empire and after the establishment of the modern Turkish Republic, the Kurds were viewed as a non-civilized group. But, as a consequence of the tragedy of the Iraqi Kurds, who have been severely suppressed at the end of the Second Gulf War, the world's humane view of the Kurds has changed. The Western countries led by USA who offered the Iraqi Kurds a secure zone in Northern Iraq, has also pushed Turkey to change its position towards the Turkish Kurds. The political elite had actually shown a tendency towards a kind of concession in the form of securing the cultural rights of the Kurds, and for the first time in Turkey's modern history, to recognize them as a separate ethnicity. Prime Minister Turket Uzal, who at that time expressed sympathy for the idea, 'suddenly'died. Although his successors the current President Suleiman Demirel, Tanso Ciller, Erbakan and Yalmaz, perhaps had shared in part the same attitude on the Kurdish issue, they were actually under the pressure of the military to send troops to the Kurdish areas in southeast Turkey and across the Iraqi border to chase the PKK's guerrillas.

What is significant, is that neither the great offensive during the past year in Northern Iraq nor the military operations either inside Turkey or in Northern Iraq could paralyse PKK's actions. [39] The case was still unclear as to what a rational and better solution could be? The popularity of the PKK has clearly increased in Turkey, and the European as well as the general Western pressure on Turkey was also increasing especially after PKK's new strategy to threaten Western tourists in Turkey and the bloody demonstrations by the Kurds in European countries like Germany, France, Belgium, simultaneously with political efforts to declare a Kurdish Parliament in exile. The army institution in Turkey still insisted (s) on a military solution while a group in the political elite was seemingly convinced that such a solution was no longer possible. In this context also, the relations between Turkey and respectively Syria and Iran were to be tackled. Although both the military and the political elite had agreed on the necessity of securing the country's interests, the dispute was still shaping on how to do that. Both Syria and Iran were accused of seeking the destabilization of Turkey: Syria by supporting the PKK, and Iran by supporting the PKK as well as a growing radical Turkish Islamic Movement. In return, Iran accused Turkey of supporting the Mujahideen Khalq, an Iranian opposition militant group, who was said to carry out sabotage actions across the Irani borders to Iraq and Turkey.

In Israel, the view on the occupied territories of Gaza and the West Bank had shown a tendency towards transformation. During the past few years, the Israeli authorities in these areas were faced with a strong uprising by the Palestinians, Al-Intifada, which survived the brutal suppression of the Israeli soldiers. As a consequence of that, a part of the Israeli political elite, the majority of the Labour Party supported by some generals in the military institution, realised the need to find a solution. Responding to Western pressure, the Israelis and the Arabs were gathered in Madrid Conference followed by the Oslo agreement between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Here the Israeli view on the solution was seen as moving towards a willingness of giving up territories and perhaps even accepting a Palestinian state. [40] Not only territorial concessions meant the recognition of official boundaries, something which has never been defined since the establishing of the Israeli state, but more essentially it meant renouncing the traditional definition of the dream of Greater Israel.

But could this essential transformation of the Israeli dream be conceived simply on a humanitarian base or as a response to international pressure? And although the Intifada has been a permanent internal exhaustive war, could it be the only reason? (see the next section) As such, conducting the peace process was in no way without a price; as it has already been emphasized, the peace process in fact created severe social division in the Israeli society. Seen in this light the military alliance could be seen as a tool to hinder further escalation in the crises.

However, this division was not totally new. Maybe Israeli intellectuals have been aware of it. Thus alliance with Turkey was perhaps an attempt to rehomogenize the social structure. But the result of the last general election and Prime Minister Netanyaho's reemphasis of the old principles are perhaps expressions of frustration more than a further step to reunite the society. But as the alliance was an attempt by the peace supporters to get the accept of the conservatives to continue the new course, perhaps it would have other objectives!

A two-partners project

The project of the Two Partners does not mean a unification of their forces; either military, economic or/and political, nor is it a joint hegemonic project. It is rather a project of partnership built on the principle of reciprocity in assisting each other in securing national interests as well as in the time of crises. It has perhaps periodic validity or/and can evolve to be an embryonic start to the formation of a regional bloc. It differs from the usual collective action, which indicates an equality in goods and payments. [41] The project of Two Partners is built on a complex of interests and the two countries may accordingly assist each other to secure the interests as well as to assure the security of each of them. It means that common interests and security are not necessary (pre)conditions for common actions. This can be seen in contrast to former attempts to creates alliances in the Third World including the Middle East, like Baghdad pact 1955 which was established by Western forces to confront the Soviet Union; the Arab Bloc against Israel which was depending on Soviet assistance; and not least the Non-aligned Movement which was penetrated by both world blocs (the West and East) and was used as a forum for political propaganda against this or that bloc.

The project of Two Partner is neither against the world hegemon, USA, nor is it merely an instrument for its interest-management. In fact, it seems that this sort of project was seen to fitting Turkey and Israel's position in the Middle East regional, where it is too difficult to find other partners to share the same objectives. Thus, both USA's esprit de corps as well Jordan's substitute positions are not seen as to be partners.

The project of Two Partners is aimed to serve Israel and Turkey in various areas in the contemporary Middle East structure and in the light of the opportunities offered by the globalization process.

Nevertheless, in addition to many of the interests and crises already mentioned, the main dreams of Turkey and Israel were to be integrated as important actors in the Middle East region. As the new innovation of the international structure is the formation of regional blocs for securing economic cooperation, both countries were assumed to have intentions in this direction, also to solve internal crises and secure national interests. But in fact realization of economic cooperation is restricted by the political disintegration of the region. Shimon Peres, the former Foreign Minister and then Prime Minister in the Labour Party-led government had already formulated a project for a sort of economically based cooperation. A mechanism for international conferences on economic cooperation in the Middle East has bee established: The first conference was held at Casa Blanca in 1994, the second took place in Amman in 1995, but nothing practically has been done mainly because of political reasons. [42]

On its side, Turkey has been one of the most enthusiastic countries to the project of Middle East Economic Cooperation. But Turkey also faced serious problems to integrate itself in the region because of historical problems; Turkey's hitherto policy of searching integration in Europe at the expense of its relations with the Arab and the Islamic countries, and not least because of the water disputes with Syria and Iraq as well as the Kurdish problem which involves these countries and Iran.

Moreover, since establishing of the new secularized Turkey by Ataturk, the country has suffered several defeats in its efforts to play a greater role on the international arena: The first and perhaps most bitter is that Turkey has been rejected by EEC (EU) several times. The second concerned Turkey's relations with NATO: Here despite Turkey's essential position as the south wing of NATO confronting Soviet expansion, NATO's countries did not offer Turkey any important support; in its disputes with Greece the Western countries have been conceived to side the latter; Turkey's project to annex all Kurdish territories to establish the Turkish-Kurdish great state is rejected by the West, the Arabs, and Iran. Thirdly, the project of a Great Turk empire has failed, because the Asian Islamic countries are divided between Iranian, American and Russian and later also Saudi-Arabian and Israeli influences.

As a response to all these defeats and still looking for a greater role and a better integration in the world system, both the Turkish military institution and the political elite (the Welfare Party was not in power yet) were supposedly agreed that Israel was the proper ally; it is the best card guaranteed by the West to put pressure on the Arabs; and it is the proper gate into the international scene, because Israel, since its establishment has been the dearest protégé of the world community. This was what Turkey tried to utilize. [43]

On the other hand, as far as the Jewish state is concerned, as the project of Great Israel has shown the need of a transformation from the physical-territorial context to the economic sphere, thus, according to the new international structure, Israel had to find a strong partner who not only accepts it but also as an ally. This project is to secure Israel the position of a mini USA.

Nevertheless, it has been emphasized, that the economic dominance should be secured by a military and political presence and attendance. Politically, and in addition to the peace agreements with Egypt, the Palestinians, and Jordan, Israel has actually established a network of relations with two Gulf countries: Oman and Qatar, and with three Magreb countries: Morocco, Tunisian and Mauritania. [44] These political relations have also opened the door to embryonic economic cooperations, which can be extended in the case of full commitment to the peace process. But what about the military?

Israel has been a target of a wave of para-military actions by groups of the Islamic Movement, both inside Israel, in the occupied territories and by Hizbullah in the Israeli-occupied zone in Lebanon. Iran was accused to be the major supporter to these groups. In this context, Israel has always expressed the desire to dismantle Iran's capacity. [45] Thus, targeting Iran might be seen as an important priority for the Israeli military, particularly due to the allegations about future Iranian Nuclear potentials. As Israel does not share borders with Iran, its air force needs midway bases. Here Turkey can provide vital assistance as long as Turkey may have similar reasons. Iran had been actually accused by Turkey of supporting PKK's guerrillas as well as the Islamic Movement of Hizbullah-Turkey.

However, in addition to its bases in the Kurdish area in Northern Iraq and supposedly in Iran, the PKK also has a base in Lebanon, precisely in Al-Beqa'e valley, which is under the control of Syrian troops. Moreover, the Turkish authorities insisted that the PKK's leader, Abdullah Ugelan, lives in Syria under the protection of the Syrian securities. But as all operations, which the Turkish troops have hitherto lunched against the Kurds were resultless, it seemed that Turkey was actually not able to incapacitate PKK's guerrilla war.

In addition to the security problems, Israel faces an essential water problem. This problem has actually been one of the main factors in the peace process. Because of its great agricultural projects, Israel utilizes the biggest share of the water from Syrian, Lebanese and Palestinians rivers. Now these countries are also under the way to develop their own agriculture projects. Some of these rivers stem from Turkey, which has in fact built up important agriculture, industrial, and tourists projects. The water issue is also a disputable between Turkey and both Syria and Iraq. In this context, in 1992, Suleiman Demirel, Prime Minister at that time and now President, launched the principle that Turkish water is for the Turks. [46] The slogan was perhaps a revised Turkish response to the Arab motto Naftul-Arab Lil-Arab; Arab's oil for Arabs; the principle which was launched by the Baath regime in Iraq in relation to the nationalization of the Iraqi Petroleum Corporation in 1972 and later on the Arab-Israeli war of October in 1973. Demirel's new principle called on exchanging Arab oil for Turkish water with Syria and Iraq. Although Turkey actually started to build large dams at the water sources in the Kurdish areas of southeast of Turkey as agriculture, industrial and tourists projects as the main bases for its economic and development strategy, [47] the major aim of the principle, that is the exchange of Arab oil for Turkish water, was not realized yet. Nevertheless these projects have reduced Syrian and Iraq's access to the water, but the influx of the water to Syria and Iraq was still gratuitous. As Turkish officials insisted, the quotas of the water were shared according to former agreements concluded under other circumstances. [48] On the other hand, and to confirm that there is a new world order now with different conditions and rules, the US, which offered essential assistance both in planning and implementing the Turkish dams and projects, has not reacted to Iraq's and Syria's insisting on the necessity of commitment to international law and the former agreements. Even if the US wished an overall solution of these main water problems the question would be how to implement it. However, what concerns Turkey, and in order to ensure that the Turkish development projects survive, the southeast part of Turkey must experience stability. But as long as the PKK continued its military actions, stability could not be settled in this part of Turkey, which is historically a Kurdish territory. This problem has already been emphasized in this section.

Thus, the case might be formulated in the following way: Now Israel needs Arab water, Arabs need Turkish water, Turkey needs Arab oil, Arabs have claims on territories from Israel. The new alliance might be seen to seek to realize this project, but the Arabs were not willing to give up, neither oil, water, nor territories. The alliance would seek to push the Arab regimes into accepting the new formula. Perhaps this could be realized through long range efforts and through an overall solution of the problems in the Middle East, and not least through realization of the project of Middle East economic cooperation. [49]

Although it might be an obvious, that any foreign policy needs its own operational model of internal changes as dynamic precondition, I have to be very prudent to involve the internal political and social changes, which have taken place in both Turkey and Israel in this discussion. [50]

The main objective of the internal political changes, would lie in an attempt to extend the popular bases of the governments. This would be an condition for pushing the project of economic expansion forward.

In Turkey, however, in the midst of all the disputes the way was open to Erbakan to form a new cabinet: a coalition with his earlier 'enemy' Ciller and her party. The military institution finally seemed to have accepted. Erbakan was perhaps one of two options: either a new military coup to confront the social and political crises as well as, especially, the growing influence of the Islamic-attitude, or an attempt to contain them. The military and the political elites chose the second option not because of its inherent nature, but in order to ameliorate the already negative picture of Turkey and its regime in Western eyes. But even more important the aim was to avoid an overall social explosion; the memories of what happened in Iran in the second half of the 1970's which ended with the Islamic revolution in 1979 were present in the minds of Middle Eastern elites. The assumption was that the Erbakan in power would not be the Erbakan in opposition. While in opposition the man used to express 'Islamic' attitude freely, even calling for the unification of the whole Islamic world in a new Khilafah Islamiyah (Islamic Great State). [51] In power he would be bounded to the state's real politik towards international agreements including the military agreement with Israel. The agreement which Erbakan, as opposition leader, had severely criticized. But as government leader Erbakan would talk about Turkey's national and strategic interests; the importance of the Turkish Republic in Northern Cyprus; renewing the agreement with the Western countries: USA, France and Britain to save the Kurds in Northern Iraq. [52] A second main objective of Erbakan's government was perhaps to find a sort of permanent solution to the Kurdish problem: Relying on his Islamic credentials, Erbakan could use terms like Muslim-fraternity to minimize the Kurdish claims and to preserve the unification of the country menaced by the separatist movement. [53]

In Israel, the changes have been more dramatic, during his election campaign the candidate Netanyahu voiced rigid rightist principles and when he became prime minister he continued to insist on those principles; he emphasized a policy of three Nos: [54] When the former labour government conducted the peace-process, it created divisions in society, because the party was representing only a half of the Israeli population. Then Netanyahu's policy represented the other half. The main objective of this hard line may lie in the efforts to contain the intensive resistance to the peace-process by the rightist-religious groupings, because as he has been opponent of the peace-process, he postulates that it is his model of peace, which is favoured by all Israelis. [55]

Conclusion

As part of the evidence for the still important role of the military power in determining national, regional, as well as international relations, is the enormous influence of the military institutions in Turkey and Israel, whose rigid doctrines not only defines the capacity of the political elite, but also control any attempt to question or modify that doctrine. In this context, it seems that the vital impacts of the former Turkish Prime Minister Uzal's political line could be summarized to four steps: He was seen as trying to build a new Ottomanism on different grounds than those of the Ataturk era. This was conceived as an attempt to dismiss and reject Kemalism or Ataturkism; He also aimed at coupling secularism, the Western principle which Ataturk had adopted to build modern Turkey, with Islam. In other words, the religion and its legacy which Ataturk had sought to destroy. This was understood as a re-Islamization of the Turkish political and social development; He sought to generate pragmatism, probably meant to replace dogmatism, which the military institution was/is built on; He sought to recognize the Kurds as a separate ethnicity and secure their political and cultural rights. This would be a recognition of a system of multi-culturalism and non-homogeneity of the Turkish society, something which may lead to destabilization and perhaps also opening the door to the dismantlement of the Turkish state, which both the military institution and the political elite are bounded to preserve.

While the Israeli-Turkish agreement aimed at satisfying the military institutions and at consolidating the position of the political elite in both countries, it had, as far as democracy is concerned, different impacts on Turkey and Israel. In the latter, the agreement could have positive effects in the efforts of the political elite to rehomogenize the Israeli society after the divisions on the peace-process. Actually the parties at which the agreement was aimed, Syria, Iran, and the Islamic fundamentalism, are considered enemies by both the pro- and anti-peace process supporters. These adversaries are estimated by both wanting to sabotage the peace-process and to destroy Israel as well.

In Turkey, in contrast, the agreement deepened the dichotomy between the state and the pro-Western elite on the one side and the majority of the people and the opposition parties and movements, who explicitly rejected and condemned the agreement on the other side. Some saw the later Israeli incursion of Lebanon (Qana), where hundreds of civilians were killed, as result of the agreement. A personal attentat on Demirel's life followed. Erbakan called for an anti-Zionist Islamic pact. These developments necessitated the change of power or more precisely allowed a new policy in order to hinder a worsening of the situation. Erbakan's potentials to continue his course were related to his efforts to rehomogenize the society as well as to secure Turkey's interests. Thus came his initiatives on both the national as well as the regional plans: His visions of a peaceful and total solution of the Kurdish problem in cooperation with Iran, Iraq, and Syria, and his efforts to have independent relations with these countries as well as with other countries in the Middle East including economic cooperation and not least to resolve the disputes around the water question. [56]

In Israel, the long commitment of Israeli politicians to the view of the military institution expressed in the four general wars against the Arabs; the occupation of territories in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, and Palestine; the several assaults on Lebanon, developing nuclear power and rejecting to sign the international agreement of banning nuclear testing and prelimination; the destruction of the Iraqi nuclear reactor and the threats to the supposedly Iranian and Pakistani nuclear capacity. These are a few evidences of the influence of the military institution and its dominating doctrine.

The essential question of this paper is whether the new military alliance can realize the objectives of restructuring the Middle East region in the light of globalization process, by imposing the project of economic cooperation guaranteed by military power. Obviously the realization of any project depends partly on the country's own capacities, and partly on the reactions of the exterior.

What concerns their own capacities, it seems that the governments in Turkey and Israel have so far made a great part, but in creating internal changes, which aimed at broadening the mass mobilization, the efforts have not much successful.

The reaction of the exterior was in fact connected to individual countries. Egypt, one of the great countries in the Middle East, was and still is desperate. It refused the idea of joining the new alliance, because it seeks to assert its position as the vanguard of the Arabs and their interests, but on the other side it feels that it once more has been defrauded by the US, Israel, and Turkey by excluding it from the arrangements of the future of Middle East.

The Israel-Turkish alliance will probably realize its goals as an alternative contra alliance is not foreseen. A contra alliance would have to include Egypt, Iran, Syria, Iraq, and the other Arab countries. However, there is a conflictual relationship between most of these countries and Iran on ideological grounds. There is also a historical confrontation between Egypt and Iran on hegemony in the Middle East generally and particularly in the Gulf. [57] Nor are Egypt and Syria quite agreed on the peace-process with Israel. Iraq is actually paralysed. Most of the Gulf countries are neither able to stand against Iran nor against Egypt, nor do they actually possess any ambitions of external expansionism. In fact any contra alliance can not be effective without Iraq and Iran. Another stumbling bloc is not least the dispute between Syria and Jordan. Rejecting Syrian critics, Jordan has not only declared the desire to join the new Israeli-Turkish military alliance, but has also indicated a threat to Syria, when Prince Hassan accused Syria of having the intention of regenerating the Great Syria at the expense of Iraq, Jordan, and Lebanon. He added that the region will experience vital developments, and the Americans will put crucial pressure on Syria especially concerning its position on the peace process. [58]

As the realists point out war is clash of wills led by the rationality of the state. The states, which neither are rationale nor express any will, are weak and defenceless. In the case under discussion here, the weakness of the regional counter-front is not foreseen as capable to prevent implementation of the Israeli-Turkish agreement in achieving its goals. But on the other hand, wills can also be changed. In the Middle East nothing is stabilized: The peoples who established the first civilizations on earth are now besieged; they still have potentiality and they strive for material capability. This is the dynamic behind instability characterizing the region. The social formation in Turkey and Israel represent two different historical courses; there is no guarantee that they will continue what their military institutions and political elites have initiated; in short, the alliance between Turkey and Israel can easily be changed to enmity, thus making room for new constellations and a new regional balance/imbalance.


Further reading

Barbir, K.: Modernization in the Middle East: Ottoman Empire, London, Al-Saqi, 1992.

Begin, Ze'ev B.: A Zionist Stand, London, 1993.

Ben-Rafael, Eliezer: Language, Identity, and Social Division; the case of Israel, Oxford, 1994.

Bruno, Michael: Crisis, Stabilization, and economic reform; Therapy by consensus, Oxford, 1993.

Catudal, H.: Isreal's Nuclear Weaponary, London, Al-Saqi, 1991.

Cohen, Y.: Nuclear Ambiguity: Vanunu Affair, London, Al-Saqi, 1992.

Cosyantine P. Danopolous (ed): From Military to Civilian Rule, London, 1992.

Efraim Karsh and Gregory Mahler (ed): Israel at the Crossroad: The Challenge of Peace, London and New York, British academic Press, 1994.

Flapan, Simha: The Birth of Israel; myths and realities, New York, 1987.

Gabriel Ben-Dor and David B. Dewitt (ed): Confidence Building in the Middle East, Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1994.

Gerard Chaliand, (tr) Philip Black: The Kurdish Tragedy, London and Atlantic Highlands, HJ: Zed Books, 1994.

Gunter, M.: Kurds in Turkey, London, Al-Saqi, 1990.

Hale, W.: Turkish Politics and the Military, Lonod, Al-Saqi, 1994.

Heper, Metin: The State Tradititon in Turkey, Beverley, 1985.

Hunter, F. Robert: The Palestinian Uprising; a war by other means, London, 1991.

Jamison, D.M.: The Israel People; a study, Nogales, Ariz., 1992.

Kahhaleh, Subhi: The Water Problem in Israel and its Repercussions on the Arab-Israeli Conflict, Beirut, 1981.

Landau: The Arab Minority in Israel, 1967-1991; political aspects, Oxford, 1993.

Metin Heper and Ahmed Evin (ed): Politics in the Third Turksih Republic, Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1994.

M. J. Laver (ed): Party Policy and Government Coalition, London, 1992.

Raphael Patai and Emmanuel Goldsmith (ed): Events and Movements in Modern Judaism, New York, Paragon House, 1995.

Robert Wistrich and David Ohana (ed): The Shaping of Israel Iddentity: Myth, Memory and Trauma, London, Frank Cass & Co., 1995.

Robins, Philip: Turkey and Middle East, London, 1991.

Rugman, Jonathan: Ataturk's Children; Turkey and the Kurds, New York, 1996.

Schiff, Ze'ev: Intifada; the Palestinian uprising; Israel's third front, New York, cop.1990.

Schindler, C.:Israel, Likud and the Zionist Dream, London, Al-Saqi, 1995

Shaw, S.: Turkey and the Holocaust, London, Al-Saqi, 1995.

Shaw, Stanford jay (ed): History of the Ottoman Empire and Modern, Cambridge, 1977.

Shipler, David K.: Arab and Jews; wounded spirits in a promised land, New York, 1986.

Walter, F. Weiker: Ottoman, Turks and the Jewish Polity: A History of The Jews in Turkey, Landham, MD: University Press of America; and Jerusalem, Israel: Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, 1992.

Williams, A.: Turkey and Europe, London, Al-Saqi, 1993.

Zvi Sobel and Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi (ed): Tradition, Innovation, Conflict; Jewishness and Judaism in contemporary Israel, New York, 1991.


Notes

1. Later in 1997, USA has officially approved the agreement and thus it has participated in the first Israeli-Turkish marine exercise, where Jordan has also been adopted as an observer. [*]

2. The British foreign minister emphasized he had not heard about the agreement, interview with MBC (an Arabic Broadcast from London), 26 June 1996. Onther other hand, (Alhayat [an Arabic daily newspaper published in London], 9 April 1996) writes: The American administration points out that, as the agreement is between an Islamic country and a non-Islamic country, it will offer a good basis for stability in the Middle East and that it is not directed against anyone. Muhammad Awadh, an Egyptian journalist, foresees that, by this agreement USA will give Israel access to the Iranian border. ( ibid, Al-Hayat 21 August 1996). [*]

3. Anti-terrorism top summit was held in Egypt, 13 March 1996 at the initiative of the USA and Egypt with the participation of many countries including Europeans, Japan, some Arabic countries, Israel and Turkey. [*]

4. Muhammad Nur el-Din, Turkish-Israeli Agreement was the Parameter to Confront Syria, Greece and Iran, Al-Hayat April 25, 1996. [*]

5. Khurshid Delly in ibid Al-Hayat. [*]

6. As many Turks, especially the Islamists, were against the development in the relations with Israel, the attentat on Demirel 18 Maj 1996 could be seen as a response to his trip to Israel; this would perhaps be connected to the attempts to abolish the Welfare Party and restrain its endeavours to have power, especially by the Army as well as the traditional political parties, because Ataturk's secular doctrine was still shaping the political life in Turkey. (Husni Mahli, The World This Week, MBC, 23 May 1996). [*]

7. For more about the realist approach see Pierre de Senarclens, The 'realist' paradigm and international conflicts, in International Social Science Journal, Vol. 127, February 1991, pp. 5-19. [*]

8. Both citations are from Barry Buzan, The Changing Security Agenda in Europe, in Ole Waever et al, Identity, Migration and the New Security Agenda in Europe, Pinter Publishers Ltd, London, 1993, pp. 11-12. [*]

9. It is useful here to refer to a new definition of the USA's hegemony in the New World Order. William Kristol and Robert Kagan call it BENEVOLENT global hegemony: Having defeated the 'evil empire' the United States enjoys strategic and ideological predominance. The first objective of US foreign policy should be to preserve and enhance that predominance by strengthening America's security, supporting its friends, advancing its interests, and standing up for its principles around the world...In the Middle East, the United States maintained the deployment of thousands of soldiers and a strong naval presence in the Persian Gulf region to deter possible aggression by Saddam Hussein's Iraq or the Islamic fundamentalist regime in Iran, and it mediated in the conflict between Israel and Syria in Lebanon. William Kristol and Robert Kagan: Toward a Neo-Reganite Foreign Policy, in Foreign Affairs, No.4, July/August 1996, pp. 21-22. [*]

10. Samir Amin works, respectively: Accumulation on a world scale: a critic of the theory of underdevelopment / translated by Brian Pearce, New York, 1974; Unequal Development: an essay on the social formation of peripheral capitalism / translated by Brian Pearce, Hassocks, 1976; Imperialism and Unequal Development, New York, 1979. [*]

11. With the conception of defected countries I address the countries which defect from the international system and challenge the world hegemon. These countries are now Iraq, Iran, Sudan, North-Korea, Cuba, Syria. [*]

12. Definition of these conceptions is obviously complicated and controversial. What I mean is the minimum commitment to the values of democracy and human rights which are mentioned in the UN Charter as well as the Western countries' constitutions, and which imply the right of the individuals as well as the nations to secure a better life-conditions by a better distribution of the resources. [*]

13. Edward N. Lutwak points out that: A policy of nonintervention would yield a world not only less stable, but also more militarized...[because]..A vacuum will have been created..[by supposedly USA's nonintervention policy] that other countries will fill. Edward N. Lutwak: A Post-Heroic Military Policy, in Foreign Affairs, No. 4, July/August 1996, p. 44. [*]

14. Jeremy D. Rosner emphasizes that the American supporters of NATO enlargement intend to sustain the 'idealists who seek to bolster democratic and economic reform in Central and Eastern Europe..' Jeremy D. Rosner: NATO Enlargement's American Hurdle, The Perils of Misjudging Our Political Will, in Foreign Affairs, No.4, July/August 1996, p. 9. [*]

15. See f.ex. Martin Shaw , Post-Military Society: militarism, demilitarization and war at the end of the twentieth century, London, 1991. [*]

16. Kenneth J. Cooper says: From the Third World perspective, the treaty appears to be colonization. The white nations want to maintain their monopoly on the advancement of military power. [India's Veto of a Treaty Banning All Nuclear Tests Is Popular at Home, International Herald Tribune, August 24-25, 1996]. However, both Indian and Pakistanis recent nuclear tests are not seen to form any real challenge to the structure of the world system or to USA's world hegemony. These tests project regional geopolitical lack of stability as well as they express frustration towards the nuclear monopoly by the five world superpowers. [*]

17. See Charles W. Kegley, JR and Margret G. Hermann; How Democracies Use Intervention: A Neglected Dimension in Studies of the Democratic Peace, in Journal of Peace Research, vol, 33, No, 3, 1996, pp. 308-311. [*]

18. Al-Bakkush, Abd el-Hamid: Why should we lose Turkey by Politics addressing Crises as Funds, Al-Hayat, 22 August 1996. [*]

19. What I mean here is among other things, simple objectives like development, liberalization of Palestine and unification of all Arab land, liberalization and unification of Kurdistan, and re-establishing the Islamic State. [*]

20. See Peres, S.: The New Middle East, 1993. [*]

21. Egypt insists always on the necessity for full-completion of the peace process prior to any further economic steps. The role of the military power is to offer an umbrella to realize such a project, and also to contribute to the security of the Gulf countries vis-a-vis Iraq's and Irans ambitions. On the basis of its territorial disputes with Saudi-Arabia and Bahrain, Qatar's economic relations with Israel are seen to be an attempt to break up the security chain around itself. [*]

22. For more details of Ataturk's era see f.ex. Preston Hughes, Ataturkculuk ve Turkiye'nin Demokratiklesme Sureci, Istanbul, Miliyet Yayinlari, 1993, reviewed by Coskun Can Aktan, Middle East Journal, No. 1, Winter 1996, p. 125-26. [*]

23. Henry J. Barkey; The State and the Industrialization Crisis in Turkey, Boulder, 1990, reviewed by Kerim K. Key in Middle East Journal, No. 3, Summer 1991, p. 523. Here the author emphasizes that this paralysis resulted in military interventions in 1960, 1971, and 1980. In the post 1960 military intervention and up to the return of the civilian rule, the military, civilian bureaucracy, and industrialists were supporters of import substitutions...which caused in hampering the formulation and implementation of cohesive long-term policies led to a paralysis of the political leadership. [*]

24. That is from Euphrates to Nile. [*]

25. Turket Uzal's sudden conciliatory policy in 1991 towards the Kurds was seen as an attempt to convince the Iraqi Kurds to join a great Turk-Kurd state. [*]

26. Ziya Onis, Turkey in the Post-Cold War Era: In Search of Identity, Middle East Journal, Volume 49, No. 1, Winter 1995, p. 52-3 [*]

27. Erik J. Zurcher, Turkey: A Modern History, St. Martin's Press, New York, p. 194. However, the Shah of Iran did the same; the consequence was the emergence of the Islamic resistance which resulted in the revolution of 1979. In recent years such an Islamic embryonic resistance has been a social and political reality in Turkey. Efforts are perhaps made or to be made to avoid a similar Iranian experience. [*]

28. Ibid, Preston Hughes. he points out that Ataturkism should no longer be accepted as a dogmatic ideology...The principles of Ataturkism are not taboos. [*]

29. Kamaran Qara Daghi, Did Uzal project destruction of Kemalism or did he seek to be a new Ataturk? Al-Hayat 25 April 1996. [*]

30. Sami Shoresh, Al-Hayat, 26 May 1996. [*]

31. The Turkish Ambassador to Denmark Turhan Morali says in a lecture at Aalborg University, 2 November 1998, that the problem of democracy is that the political system is shaped by party-oligarchy restraining grass-roots movements to form any alternative. On the identity crisis, he said: We still ask ourselves: who are we? [*]

32. Yehuda Ben-Meir, Civil-Military Relations in Israel, New York, Colombia University Press, 1995, reviewed by Amos Perlmutter in ibid Middle East Journal, No. 1, Winter 1996, p. 117-18. The author points out that the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) have played a disproportional role in shaping Israel's strategy... In view of the professionalization of the IDF, its role in the decisions to go to war, and now in the peace negotiations, the Israeli military is certainly more important than in other democratic political systems. [*]

33. The imposed identity, as the Kemalist ideology had defined, was based on two cornerstones: non-ethnicity and secularism. But this identity never been realized (see ibid Turkish Ambassador), because the non-ethnicity led to Turkicization of the non-Turks and the secularism projected merely the dis-Islamization of the society in Modern Turkey. [*]

34. Kevin A. Avruch, Gush Emunin: Politics, Religion, and Ideology in Israel, in Michael Curtis (ed) Religion and Politics in the Middle East, West view Press, Boulder, Colorado, 1981, pp. 207-215. [*]

35. Daniel J Elazar and Janet Aviad; Religion and Politics in Israel, in ibid, Michael Curtis (ed), pp. 163-66. As the authors point out 'Israel is formally a secular democratic state', and the Jewish people are categorized either as religious, non-religious traditionalists or secularists. Furthermore, they emphasize that 'it is difficult to distinguish between a pure national Israeli identity and a Jewish identity. National historical consciousness does not exist without reference to the religious historical past. Continuity with Jewish national culture implies continuity with religious tradition in some form. The sources to be confronted are religious sources. The consciousness and sensibility are religious.' [*]

36. Within the right wing, there are both secularists and non-secularists, and in fact the right-left conflict is also inherent in the conflicts between the liberal citizenship and the religious-nationalist citizenship. Azmi Besharah, On the Current Challenges, Al-Hayat, Arabic Newspaper issued in London, August 24, 1996. [*]

37. In the last general election, the Russian Jews, who are relatively new immigrants won the same number of mandates (6) like Shas, and the Arabs won 4 mandates. [*]

38. MBC's interview with a leading figure in black Jews movement under the general election. See also Teshome G. Wagaw: For Our Soul: Ethiopian Jews in Israel, Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1993, where the author points out that the Ethiopian Jews are alienated in their resettlement in Israel. [*]

39. The recent Turkish threats to Syria which aimed to dismantle PKK's infrastructure in Syria had temporally led to minimizing PKK's actions, but there is no significance for a total uprooting of its military power, nor it can give a sense of future developments. [*]

40. Usi Sarid, the former deputy foreign minister in the Labour government, who was one of the main figures behind the Oslo accord, MBC's report, August 2, 1996. [*]

41. Baizhu Chen, Yi Feng and Cyrus Masroori; Collective Action in the Middle East? A Study of Free-ride in Defence Spending, in Journal of Peace Research, vol. 33, No. 3, 1996, pp. 323-24. [*]

42. President Mubarak states that the time is not in favour of peace, nor is it in favour of the region including Israel; without peace security is not expected, and without security there is no stability. News conference together with President Assad in Alexandria August 7, 1996. However, as the Third Economic Conference was held in Cairo in 1996 and was categorized as successful, it was clear that the unsolved political conflicts were still restraining real initiative to regional economic cooperation. Thus, the Forth Conference in Dawha (Qatar) in 1997 was a real fiasco because the majority of the Arab countries have boycotted it 'as long as there was not any progress in the peace process, due to Netanyaho's hard line'. [*]

43. Rumours have also been released that Iraq and Sudan have tried this gate. [*]

44. As issues like development and more integration in the international system (see note 36) can be seen as the main reasons behind these countries' relations with Israel. However, Qatar and Oman may have additional reasons: both countries seek to retain their national autonomy vis-a-vis the joint platform of the Gulf Economic Corporation, GEC, which is conceived to be dominated by Saudi-Arabia. [*]

45. Under the general election in Israel, Prime minister Shimon Peres called for the formation of a Western-Arabic coalition against Iran. [*]

46. Demirel said: Neither Syria nor Iraq lay claim to Turkey's rivers any more than Ankara could claim their oil, Turkish Daily News, July 25, 1992. [*]

47. See Water Issues Between Turkey, Syria and Iraq, A study by the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs-Department of Regional and Transboundary Waters, in Perception-Journal of International Affairs, No. 2, June-August 1996, pp.94-96. [*]

48. Ibid, pp. 105-107. [*]

49. Sami Kohen emphasizes: The question of water certainly needs a new approach and should become the subject of bilateral and regional cooperation, rather than of dispute. In this regard, I believe that the Water for Peace project offers great opportunities for closer economic and political links among the nations of the Middle East. Sami Kohen: On the Future of the Middle East, in ibid, Perception, p. 116. [*]

50. My discretion derives from the point of view that the election programme of both Erbakan and Netanyahu were substantially contrary to the political reality in both countries. Therefore it would be too difficult to anticipate the compromises will evolute. To deal with Erbakan and Netanyahu, I think it needs a more comprehensive study of their programmes and the new realities they seek to create. [*]

51. A conference was held in Istanbul, Al-Hayat, May 29, 1996. [*]

52. This agreement was concluded in the aftermath of the Second Gulf War, according to which the Turkish authorities allow the air forces from the USA, France, and Britain to use Turkish military bases to observe the free zone for the Kurds in Northern Iraq. The agreement must be renewed every 6 months. Erbakan was very critical of the agreement, but when he became prime minister, he agreed to renew it. However, Erbakan's attempts to establish a political basis for cooperation (also economic) with the Islamic World, Asian and African countries, remained merely personal initiatives because of the tough opposition by the secular parties in Parliament. [*]

53. This option failed as well. Erbakan's government and party have been quickly crippled by a harmonic play between the military institution and the secular political elite. Meanwhile the relations with Israel continued its progress despite the wide popular opposition. [*]

54. No withdrawal from Golan Heights, No withdrawal or even discussion of the case of Jerusalem, No negotiations under any preconditions. [*]

55. Interview in MBC, 7 August, 1996. [*]

56. During his trip to Iran 10-11 August 1996, Erbakan called on a summit between the leaders of Turkey, Iran, Syria, and Iraq to find an overall solution of the Kurdish problem and all other security problems, and to establish a program of economic cooperation. [*]

57. Recently there have been some evidences about a progress in Egyptian-Iranian relations. But concert initiatives are still not been taken, due the ideological and political conflicts. E.g. Mubarak accused Iran to encourage terrorism and to intervene in Arab affairs (a statement on 7 July 1996). [*]

58. Al Sharq el-Awsat (an Arabic daily newspaper issues in London) 27 May 96 referring to a conference at the Al-Ahram Centre for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo. [*]


Akram Tahamas Hawas
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