Hysteria in Turkey: outward glance
Since the end of the First World War up to the beginning of 2000, Turkey found itself surrounded by enemies. This belief has recently come up with a new bang. They think that their foes are all around: Syria, Russia, Iran, etc. This is the explanation for the hysterical outbursts of Turkey such as shooting down Russian military jet, bringing of their troops to Iraq, etc.
Why does Turkey take all its neighbours as enemies?
Ankara believes that the Russian foreign policy is based on the fears of Turkey strengthening. The authorities seem to think that Russia surrounds the country all around: Crimea, Armenia where the Russian military base is located and Syria from now on.
From the Turkish point of view, by supporting Bashar Assad, Russia destabilized the situation in Syria and paved the way for ISIS prosperity. They believe that is Assad’s regime is toppled, the so called “moderate” opposition will take over and ISIS will get self-eliminated.
The Turkish media claims that there are 47 groups functioning in Syria and ISIS is a Western project. This is why, they support “moderate” rebels within the programme “train and equip” which in reality is just a way to cover their cooperation with ISIS.
Turkey has its own plans as far as Syria is concerned. Ankara is trying to take 100 thousand Turkoman people (descendants of the Anatolian Turkmen) from Syria under the protection. If a Turkish protégé comes into power, Turkey will have more chances to achieve its ambitions of the ex-Ottoman Empire.
As for Iran, it has historically been its rival. Iran aims at dominating the Shia part of the Middle East. According to Turkey, Russia, Syria and Iran cooperate with each other to stand against Turkey. It is believed that these countries get united under the so called “Shia coalition”.
The domestic situation in Turkey is not as good as it might seem. Erdogan’s position is not that stable as well.
The ruling party “Justice and Development” did not manage to get a majority at the elections in June 2015. The pre-election took place on the 1st of November which helped the party to return its dominating position in the parliament.
The opposition within the country is represented by the left communist movement led by the Kurds. Traditionally, the Kurds are against the ruling party. They have been also fighting for establishing their own autonomy for a few decades.
There is a tendency to blame the political elite of the country for supporting ISIS and terrorism. The internal opponents accuse those in power of turning the country into the straight path to ISIS. It is not only foreign mercenaries, but military equipment and weapons that get to ISIS through Turkey. Illegal trade of oil turned into a profitable business for Erdogan family.