Last year, while I was writing up an article on the Turkish foreign policy, I've realized that half of the countries in the world are directly or indirectly related with Turkey due to her geopolitical position and her imperial legacy.
During his presidential visit to Turkey, Bill Clinton made a similar remark, "If the First World War erupted for sharing out mainly the Ottoman lands. We understand whenever we contemplate about the Middle East that the inheritance dispute has not yet settled."
Thus, Clinton emphasized the significance of Turkey in terms of both her extraordinary geopolitical position and her deep-rooted imperial legacy.
Taking her imperial legacy and geopolitical position into account, here's a brief list of countries that are related to Turkey from past to present:
i. The United States: Turkey's principal NATO ally currently has problems with Turkey in the context of the Syrian crisis.
ii. Russia: Although the Ottoman Empire and Russia had been fierce rivals in the past, the Turkish-Russian relations have at present intensified to a greater extent in the fields of military, trade and energy.
iii. Germany: Although Turkish-German relations currently fluctuate in the political realm, Germany is Turkey's greatest partner of trade and 3 million Turks live in Germany.
iv. France: Although France attempted to occupy the province of Maraş [Kahramanmaraş] during the First World War, the Turkish-French relations are based on mutual interests.
v. The United Kingdom: Although Turkey fought against the United Kingdom during the First World War, our diplomatic and commercial relations with Britain remain at a higher level.
vi. Iran: Our historical neighbor, thus both a rival and a friend, Iran developed a relationship of alliance now and of competition then with Turkey in the Middle East. Yet, the Turkish-Iranian relations are especially strong in the context of a deep-rooted trade.vii. The Balkans: As all countries in the Balkan Peninsula share a common history and culture with Turkey, their relations with Turkey continues to expand in all the fields of politics, culture and economy.
viii. Greece: Founded in 1825, Greece is the "antagonistic sister" of Turkey.
ix. The Middle East: All the countries in the Middle East have inextricable relations with Turkey in terms of politics, culture and economy.
x. The Turkic Countries: Turkey has inextricable connections with all Turkic countries and Turkish communities living in Russia.
xi. The African Continent: Relying on its historical relations with the countries of the African continent, the Turkish-African relations improve year by year. As the President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's visit to Sudan proved, Turkey is enthusiastically welcomed especially by the countries of the North Africa.
Even in the Latin America, Turkey's impact is not of a lesser nature. While the Latin American peoples adore Turkish television series, the current President of Venezuela expressed his proximity to Turkey.
This brief list aims at demonstrating the fact that most the countries of the world are closely interested in the Turkish elections. Especially in the countries formerly colonized by the Western powers, Turkey emerges as the role model of growth and future, while the President Erdogan has already become a regional symbol for the establishment of a just future.
On the other hand, certain Western powers desire to intervene into the Turkish elections for controlling Turkey better and holding her in a weakened position. During the last referendum, for instance, the anti-Erdogan articles that were published in the German newspapers were more than those published in Turkey.
Yet, the Turkish people have always been against such foreign intervention into our domestic politics and remain vigilant about the secret agendas of the Western powers.
In a word, while a half of the world interprets Turkey as a role model, the countries in the opposite front desire to hold Turkey in a servile position.
In the next column, I am going to analyze the upcoming elections under the light of a fresh data.