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JuneJune-JulyJuly-August 2010 | Vol. 1 | No. 2

“Advancing Diversity”

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle: Exposing Shifts in the World Economic Order

By Prof. Bulent Gokay Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence: Anything to Celebrate?

By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem For a Pro-Immigration Argument

By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci The Fear of a Free Kurdistan in the Middle East of the 21st Century

By Dr. Ayla Gol

ISSN 2042-888X

Turkish Vision of Regional And Global Order: Theoretical Background And Practical Implementation

By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu Published by the Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis (CESRAN)

Chairman Ozgur TUFEKCI Executive Editor Alper Tolga BULUT Managing Editor Husrev TABAK World Stories Editor Aksel ERSOY Europe Review Editor Paula SANDRIN Eurasia Review Editor Duygu UCKUN Caucasus Review Editor Zaur SHIRIYEV Middle East Review Editor Murad DUZCU China Review Editor Antony OU Brief History Editor Tamer KASIKCI Film Review Editor Alaaddin F. PAKSOY Recent Books Editors Umit CALIK Tamer KASIKCI Abdullah UZUN Senior Contributors Can ERBIL (Dr.) Kurtulus GEMICI (Dr.) Bulent GOKAY (Prof.) Ayla GOL (Dr.) Bayram GUNGOR (Assoc. Prof.) Alpaslan OZERDEM (Prof.) Ibrahim SIRKECI (Reader) Murat TUMAY (Dr.) Talat ULUSSEVER (Dr.) Contributors Gabriel Siles BRUGGE Cemil CENGIZ Rahman DAG Enes ERBAY Arshad ISAKJEE David JAROSZWESKI Ali Onur OZCELIK Fusun OZERDEM (Assist. Prof.) Kadri Kaan RENDA Paul RICHARDSON Dilek YIGIT (Dr.) Web producer & Developer Serdar TOMBUL

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PUBLISHED BY CENTRE FOR STRATEGIC RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS (CESRAN) ©2010 By the Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis. All rights reserved. Political Reflection and its logo are trademarks of the Centre for Strategic Research and Analysis, which bears no responsibility for the editorial content; the views expressed in the articles are those of the authors. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the publisher.

A Multinational, Global Think-tank For

“Advancing Diversity”




June-July-August 2010


World Stories Commentary


12 17 20 26 29 33


From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle: Exposing Shifts in the World Economic Order By Prof. Bulent Gokay Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence: Anything to Celebrate? By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem For a Pro-Immigration Argument By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci The Fear of a Free Kurdistan in the Middle East of the 21st Century By Dr. Ayla Gol Taming Rating Agencies By Dr. Kurtulus Gemici Platonic Lovers Chasing Nukes Around The World By Ozgur Tufekci Democratic Opening, Martyrs and Journalism By Cemil Cengiz Turkish Vision of Regional And Global Order: Theoretical Background And Practical Implementation By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu



Europe Review 51

55 62

The Development Of A European Union Security Culture: Wishful Thinking or Reality? By Paula Sandrin The European Union As A Normative Power And The Western Balkans By Dr. Dilek Yigit Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability in Western Balkans Through EU Membership and Kosovo Issue By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem


June-July-August 2010

POLITICAL REFLECTION Contents Eurasia Review In the Deep Freeze? A Cold War Legacy And The Visa-Free Programme Between Russia and Japan By Paul Richardson


Caucasus Review


Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States: Illusions, Reality, Perspectives By Zaur Shiriyev


Brief History A Brief Analysis Over The Historical Factors That Affect Today’s Iraq By Tamer Kasikci


Middle East Review The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq And Its Possible Alternatives By Rahman Dag



China Review Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review By Antony Ou


Film Review


On Michael Haneke’s Funny Games US By Enes Erbay


Recent Books


WORLD NEWS | By Aksel Ersoy

Thailand Violence erupted during anti -government protests in Thailand as one demonstrator was killed and the key protest leader was shot in the head while being interviewed by journalists. Tension soared amid the sound of explosions and gunfire and an anarchic mob atmosphere in downtown Bangkok's Lumpini Park, where protesters had massed. Video footage showed one protester dead on the pavement. There was also footage of Red Shirt movement leader Maj. Gen. Khattiya Sawasdipol lying on the ground, dressed in camouflage, as frantic protesters attempted to move him and get help. (13.05.2010)

Gulf of Mexico American maritime authorities say crude oil is pouring into the sea at the site where the hulking rig once stood. Officials said before the explosion there were 700,000 gallons of diesel fuel on board the platform and it had been drilling 8,000 barrels, or 336,000 gallons, of oil a day. The Coast Guard said a one-mile by five-mile slick had settled on the surface about 45 miles offshore from the Gulf states of Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi. US President Barack Obama said the disaster was being treated as "the number one priority". Mr Obama added: "The entire federal government is offering all assistance needed in the rescue effort as well as in mitigating and responding to the environmental impact." (20.04.2010)

England Within hours of his appointment, Britain's new prime minister, David Cameron, immediately began forming his coalition government overnight, appointing several Liberal Democrat leaders to Cabinet posts along with members of his own Conservative Party. Lib Dems leader Nick Clegg, who was named deputy prime minister, announced early Wednesday his party's agreement into entering such a partnership, saying, "I hope this is the start of the new politics I have always believed in: diverse, plural; where politicians of different persuasions come together to overcome their differences in order to deliver good government for the sake of the whole country." (11.05.2010)

1 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

WORLD NEWS | By Aksel Ersoy

Jamaica At least 60 people have died in battles between the police and a gang in Jamaica as the government attempts to extradite an alleged drug lord. Police have said civilians and security forces have been killed as soldiers battle the defenders of Christopher Coke. Coke, known as "Dudus", is wanted by the US for alleged drug offences. Heavily armed soldiers and police have conducted door-to-door searches in the hunt for him in the Tivoli Gardens neighbourhood of West Kingston. Jamaican Prime Minister Bruce Golding has said he "regrets the loss of life" and has vowed to restore law and order in the Caribbean nation. (23.05.2010)



Tens of thousands of public workers in Greece have walked out on strike to protest against huge slashes in government funding.

The death toll from a Russian coal mine accident has reached 52, with 38 people still missing, the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry said Tuesday, 11th.

The country's public services have been paralysed as doctors, nurses, teachers, tax officials and dockers downed tools.

"The rescue operation to locate and recover the missing people is being carried out around the clock," Veronica Smolskaya, spokeswoman for the ministry, told CNN.

They are demanding the government ends what one union official called "bloodthirsty measures" as wages are cut, pensions frozen and taxes hiked.

More than 80 survivors are currently in hospitals, according to the Russian State Health authorities.

It comes as new figures show Greece's public deficit for 2009 has shot up to 13.6% of GDP - and as a credit agency downgraded the country's sovereign debt rating.

Russian officials are still displaying hope and optimism in public, but several sources at the mine told Russian reporters on conditions of anonymity that finding anyone underground who survived the explosions would be a miracle. (11.05.2010)

The new deficit statistics mean that the baseline for calculations of massive budget cutbacks and reforms imposed by the EU on Greece is far higher than had been estimated. (22.04.2010)

2 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

WORLD NEWS | By Aksel Ersoy

Poland The plane crash that killed Polish President Lech Kaczynski on Saturday gutted a nation's leadership and silenced some of the most potent human symbols of its tragic and tumultuous history. The toll cut a swath through Poland's elite. The 97 dead included the army chief of staff, the head of the National Security Bureau, the national bank president, the deputy foreign minister, the deputy parliament speaker, the civil rights commissioner and other members of parliament. The news came as a shocked and grieving Poland welcomed home the body of its president. Hundreds of thousands lined the streets of Warsaw to pay their respects as Mr Kaczynski's cavalcade wound its way through the capital to the presidential palace. (11.04.2010)

Palestine Israeli air strikes on Gaza has left more than a dozen people wounded. The overnight raid was in response to cross -border attacks by Palestinian fighters, and targeted tunnels used by them. The two strikes hit an abandoned airport in Rafah in the south, where there were no injuries, and a Hamas training camp in Beit Hanoun in the north, where 15 people were lightly injured, Hamas security sources said. Israel accuses Palestinians of using a vast network of tunnels to smuggle weapons into the territory; Palestinians say the tunnels are a lifeline for bringing in essential supplies because Israel has blockaded the territory since June 2007, when Hamas seized control from Abbas's Fatah faction. (10.05.2010)

3 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

WORLD NEWS | By Aksel Ersoy

Iceland It is Iceland's second volcano eruption in less than a month and the heat is so fierce it has melted part of a glacier, in turn sparking huge floods. At least 800 people have had to evacuate their homes in the island state because of the flooding but there have been no reports of injuries. Flight disruptions caused by ash clouds could last all summer because there are no signs a volcanic eruption in Iceland is about to end. Last month, the first volcano eruption at the Eyjafjallajokull glacier since 1823, and Iceland's first since 2004, briefly forced 600 people from their homes in the same area. (14.04.2010)

Israel Israeli commandos have attacked a flotilla of aidcarrying ships off the coast of the Gaza Strip, killing up to 19 people on board. Dozens of others were injured when troops raided the convoy of six ships, dubbed the Freedom Flotilla, early on Monday. Israel said activists on board attacked its commandos as they boarded the ships, while the flotilla's organisers said the Israeli forces opened fire first, as soon as they stormed the convoy. (31.05.2010)

China A truck travelling on the wrong side of the road ploughed head-on into a bus that turned into a fireball on impact, killing 32 people in China. The collision happened along a section of road undergoing maintenance in Fuxin City, in the northeastern of province of Liaoning. The victims included 29 bus passengers and all three people aboard the truck. Twenty-four other bus passengers were injured, with three in a critical condition. The bus was heading from Tianjin city near Beijing to Harbin, the capital of northeastern Helongjiang province. The cause of the accident is under investigation. (23.05.2010)

* Compiled by Aksel Ersoy from Different World News 4 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle: Exposing Shifts in the World Economic Order

6 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

(R) Olli Rehn, European Commissioner for Economic and Financial Affairs

(L) George Papandreou, Prime Minister of Greece

By Prof. Bulent Gokay*

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay


7 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle

n 15 September 2008, At the same time, without any real ecothe supposedly safe and nomic recovery in sight, with sharp declines perpetually prosperous in household income and fast rising unemworld of post-industrial ployment, social and political conflict is inglobal economic order creasing in Europe. Greece offers the most blew itself up when Lehman Brothers filed serious example of how the financial crisis for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the United has moved into a new phase and exposed States. The 158-year-old iconic investment the deep-rooted contradictions within the bank was forced into this extreme act when current global system. ‘The Greek financial the collapse of the US sub-prime mortgage crisis has put the very survival of the euro at market turned into the securitized mortstake,’ Nobel laureate economist Joseph gage-backed debt obligaStiglitz wrote recently tions into toxic assets(1). (4). It is feared that Today, 20 months after Greece will be a window Lehman Brothers’ sensainto the next phase of tional collapse, the entire the global economic world economy is still in crisis. That is because the grips of the most the global crisis, which severe synchronized started with the colglobal recession, the lapse of the Lehman worst in over 75 years. Brothers in September Growth in advanced 2008, was never really economies remains very resolved. Huge state sluggish, and unemploybail-outs simply transment continues to rise to ferred all the debt to the dangerously high levels. public sector. Countries The enormous stock in the weaker periphery market bubble (massive of the eurozone, such as amount of money that Spain, Greece and Porhave been injected into tugal, lack both the the financial system) that physical and human Joseph Stiglitz has formed over the past infrastructure required 20 months is considered the main source to make themselves more competitive in of another possible crash, reflected in Der the global marketplace. Yet, it is in those Spiegel’s front-page headline, ‘The Trillion areas (spending on roads, telecommunicaBomb’(2). The huge budget deficits in tion, universities and skills) the IMF-imposed Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain cuts will fall, which presents a serious probthreaten to break the euro’s back. The lem not just now but for the future, as the huge budget deficit of Britain, exposed reageing baby boomer generation presents cently during the general election campaign, Europe with a steady decline in its working is now nearing Greek territory, according to age population. Europe is now facing a douthe latest figures on government borrowing ble-dip recession as debt crisis intensifies in (3). The probability of an eventual British Greece. All indications point out a scenario default on debt remains quite likely. that eurozone economies will fall into a long

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle

prolonged no growth, or very low growth, period for the foreseeable future.

GDP(6). IMF predicts that ‘despite the emerging economies' cooling momentum, they are still expected to provide a source of resilience, benefiting from strong productivity growth and improved policy frameworks.'(7) In its November 2008 report, Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World, the US National Intelligence Council alerted that ‘The international system as constructed following the Second World War will be almost unrecognisable by 2025 owing to the rise of emerging powers, a globalizing economy, and historic transfer of relative wealth and economic power from West to East, and the growing influence of non-

A 110 billion euro plan, accepted in May 2010, to bail out Greece has reduced the risk of a debt default this year for the country, but is unlikely to end the crisis of confidence shaking weak economies on European Union’s periphery. The Greek crisis risks destabilizing eurozone and marks the beginning of the most serious crisis in the history of the European Union. The risk of default is evident in countries other than Greece. There are clear concerns about Portugal, and questions have been raised about Italy and Spain. But this profound sovereignty debt crisis is not only a European problem. It is merely another indicator of a severe systemic crisis afflicting the UScentred Western economies and Japan.

“One of the most interesting results of the global economic crisis is the acceleration of the global economic power shift toward emerging economies.”

“It began in Athens. It is spreading to Lisbon and Madrid. But it would be a grave mistake to assume that the sovereign debt crisis that is unfolding will remain confined to the weaker eurozone economies … it is a fiscal crisis of the western world”(5).

state actors’(8). It seems that emerging economies recovered more quickly and robustly: many producers in emerging market economies are not suffering as much as their counterparts in the developed world economies in the current global crisis. It is obvious that their exports have been hit, but many of them have found that domestic demand is relatively buoyant. That is because their own economies are on an upwards growth path that is not so cyclical, so they can turn to the domestic market and exploit pent-up domestic demand. Of course not all emerging market economies are the same, and the recent troubles have confirmed that a separation is occurring between the more and less robust emerging economies(9).

One of the most interesting results of the global economic crisis is the acceleration of the global economic power shift toward emerging economies. The economies to watch now are the E-7 (Emerging Seven): China, India, Brazil, Russia, Mexico, Indonesia and Turkey. According to a PricewaterhouseCoopers forecast, their combined gross domestic product could overtake that of the G-7 countries this decade, but this parity will not last for long, due to their much stronger growth potential, E-7 economies will break away from the G-7 with combined E-7 GDP being projected by PwC to be around 30% higher by 2030 than total G-7

8 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay

9 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle

‘The data so far suggest the economies of faces the global crisis from a position of China and India are growing (not as fast as strength(13). in the past but still growing), while America's “In financial terms, China is little affected economy shrinks in absolute terms’(10). by the crisis in the West. Its entire finanThanks to its capital controls, its huge savcial system plays a relatively small role in ing surplus and its publicly owned and stateits economy, and it apparently has no controlled banking system, China seems to exposure to the toxic assets that have be well shielded from the Western financial brought the U.S. and European banking and economic difficulties(11). Mortgage systems to their knees. China also runs assets and the housing market in China a budget surplus and a very large curshows much greater stability and strength rent account surplus, and it carries little compared to the shaky and risky mortgages government debt(14).” and lending structures set-up in the US and It seems that while the other Western econorest of the world is mies. China's banks are grappling with the now the strongest in “China's banks are now the global slowdown, the world, with capital strongest in the world, with China is figuring out ratios far above always to exploit it. most all other large capital ratios far above almost all Squeezed between banks in the world other large banks in the world falling profits and and debt levels that and debt levels that are the credit crunch, a are far lower(12). far lower.” growing number of China has already betroubled corporacome a major actor in tions and countries world currency and finan(including the IMF) are turning to cash-rich cial markets. The country holds $1.8 trillion China for a bailout. China now appears to in foreign exchange reserves. In particular, be in a much stronger bargaining position China’s dollar holdings are a source of conthan they have been in the last few years: siderable financial leverage in the global Flush with cash at a time when most counfinancial markets. China has an especially tries and global corporations are struggling effective financial system, which seems to to gain access capital, China has spent be well positioned to finance the next phase nearly 60-billion US dollars in less than a in its economic expansion. Many observers week in February 2009 in a series of deals also agree that the Chinese economy has a that will secure a long-term supply of iron much bigger margin of maneuver, because ore, copper, zinc and oil. Brazil signed a its exposure to those speculative toxic asdeal to supply China with 100,000 to sets, which lay at the root of the recent fi160,000 barrels of oil a day in exchange for nancial crisis, is much lower than the expobillions of dollars of investment. Under the sure of the American and West European agreement signed in Brasilia, state-owned economies. Furthermore, China's yuan reChina Development Bank will provide fimains basically stable at a reasonable equinancing to Brazil's state-run energy comlibrium level, which helps to prevent the inpany Petrobras to develop its massive oil ternational financial and currency market reserves. In 2008, trade between China from further turbulence. In a way, China

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle

and Brazil totaled $36 billion making China Brazil’s second largest trading partner(15).

Asia in particular, would provide us a longer term and deeper understanding of the global system in the current century. The 21st century looks set to be fashioned by the rise of China, India, Brazil and other emerging economies at the state level; and the formidable rise of Pacific -Asia (Chindia)(18) as the foremost economic zones at the regional level.

Peter Dicken describes this ongoing process as ‘the changing global economic map’, arguing that ‘old geographies of production, distribution and consumption are continuously being disrupted and that new geographies are continuously being created. In that sense, the global economic map is always in a state of becoming …’(16). If one looks at China’s economic figures for the last 20 years, one realises a truly global power rising at a stunning rate. If one considers that ultimately geopolitical power is built on economic power, then there exists every reason to anticipate that China will soon become one of the two or three superplayers on the global arena. Former US deputy treasury secretary Roger Altman has written in Foreign Affairs: ‘the financial and economic crash of 2008, the worst in 75 years, is a major geopolitical setback for the United States and Europe… No country will benefit economically from the financial crisis over the coming year, but a few states most notably China will achieve a stronger relative global position… Beijing will be in a position to assist other nations financially and make key investments in, for example, natural resources at a time when the West cannot (17).’

Notes: * Bulent Gokay is a Professor of International Relations at Keele University. 1) ‘Toxic security' has become shorthand for the various asset classes hard hit by the financial crisis, such as sub-prime mortgages. In simple terms, ‘toxic’ assets mean things that may not be worth what the price tag says. 2) Spiegel Online, December 2009, http:// zeitgeist/0,1518,668729-3,00.html [accessed in January 2010]. 3) The Independent, 19 February 2010, business/news/shock-as-british-deficitequals-that-of-greece-1904129.html [accessed in February 2010]. 4) htt p:/ / www .d a yli fe .com / topi c/ Joseph_Stiglitz [accessed in May 2010]. 5) Niall Ferguson, ‘A Greek crisis is coming to America’, Financial Times, 10 February 2010. 6) ‘Shift in World Economic Power means a decade of seismic change’, 21 Jan 2010, c o n t e n t / d e t a i l . a s p x ? releaseid=3547&newsareaid=2

To explain the current financial crisis and economic downturn, from the collapse of the Lehman Brothers to the recent Greek debt crisis, within the context of an epochal shift in the world-system away from North American/West European dominance and towards emerging economies, to southeast

10 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Bulent Gokay

00144feab49a.html?nclick_check=1. 13) Keidel, Albert, « The Global Financial Crisis : Lessons for the United States and China », Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, October 16, 2008, files/China_and_the_Global _Financial_Crisis3.pdf. 14) Altman, Roger Altman, « The Great Crash, 2008, A Geopolitical Setback for the West », Foreign Affairs, January/ February 2009, http:// say88101/roger-c-altman/the-greatcrash-2008.html [accessed in January 2010]. 15) Simpkins, Jason, « China Continues its Commodities Binge with Brazilian Oil Deal », Money Morning, 24 February 2 0 0 9 , h t t p : / / 1/china-brazil-oil/. 16) Dicken, Peter, Global Shift. Mapping the Changing Contours of the World Economy, New York: Sage 2007, p. 32. 17) Altman, Roger, « The Great Crash, 2008, A Geopolitical Setback for the West », Foreign Affairs, January/ February 2009, http:// say88101/roger-c-altman/the-greatcrash-2008.html.’ 18) In Mapping the Global Future, a report by the National Intelligence Council, analysts concluded: ‘In the same way that commentators refer to the 1900s as the 'American Century,' the 21st century may be seen as the time when Asia, led by China and India, comes into its o w n . ’ ( h t t p : / /, accessed in January 2010)

11 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

From Lehman Brothers’ Collapse to the Greek Debacle

7) IMF Survey Magazine, « IMF Predicts Major Global Slowdown Amid Financial Crisis »,: IMF Research, 8 October 2008, pubs/ft/survey/so/2008/ res100808a.htm. 8) National Intelligence Council, « Global Trends 2025 : The National Intelligence Council’s 2025 Project, p.27, http:// w w w . d n i . g o v / n i c / NIC_2025_project.html 9) The shift in global economic power is not just reflected in GDP. The G-7 group of richest countries has already expanded to the G-20, a forum designed to promote dialogue on financial and global economic governance issues, while it was the China and the US that took the lead in the Copenhagen climate change talks. 10) Kennedy, Paul, «American Power Is on the Wane », The Wall Street Journal, 14 January 2009, http:// SB123189377673479433.html. 11) China’s banking sector is controlled by the so-called “Big Four” (China Construction Bank Corp., Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Bank of China Ltd, Agricultural Bank of China). 12) Chinese banks have recently cemented their position as the most highly valued financial institutions, taking four of the top five slots in a ranking of banks’ share prices as a multiple of their book values. China Merchants Bank, China Citic, ICBC and China Construction Bank lead the table, followed by Itaú Unibanco of Brazil, all with a price-to-book multiple of more than three. Financial Times, 10 January 2010, cms/s/0/1c13f7f2-fe16-11de-9340-

Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence: Anything to Celebrate? By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem*

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem


military forces and civilians on 20th May, the question I had in mind was what there is for Cameroon to celebrate in terms of its achievements over the last 50 years. In his inaugural ceremony speech of the conference, President Biya asked the same question for all of these 17 African countries, stating that for them building their states had to start ‘from the bottom’ as they lacked the necessary human resources, they were ‘confined to subsistence and the informal economy’, and they ‘inherited vast territories, without geographical harmony, without linguistic ethnic homogeneity, without cultural cohesion...And each one of us,...’ he continued ‘...with disparate puzzle pieces, has done what took old nations centuries to accomplish.’ Therefore, it is also important to remember that Cameroon started its journey as an independent state on 1 January 1960 against such a socio-economic background. With a population less than 20 million and a territory twice bigger than the United Kingdom, Cameroon is bordered by six countries (in clock wise direction, Nigeria, Chad, Central African Republic, the Republic of the Congo, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea) and the Atlantic Ocean. The Portuguese explorers were the first to set foot on Cameroon (the name Cameroon derives

13 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence

s is the case for 16 other African countries, this year is the 50th anniversary of independence for Cameroon. The year of 1960 was a remarkable turning point in the history of those countries(1), as it was the end of colonisation with many hopes and expectations invested for a future in which they could be their own rulers. To celebrate the occasion, H.E. President Paul Biya of Cameroon organized an international conference entitled Africa 21 in Yaoundé, the capital city of the country, on 17-19 May in order to explore contemporary challenges faced by the continent. Attended by a number of head of states of Central and West African countries; Jean Ping, Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union; Kofi Annan, former Secretary General of the United Nations; Mohamed El Baradei, former Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency; many academics; and representatives of multinational banks and companies, and civil society organisations, it was a great and colourful occasion; though was slightly chaotic at times, as many of such events which involve head of states and their entourages! However, watching the Independence Day parade of

Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem

from Rio dos Camarőes – the river of prawns) in the 15th Century. The Germans arrived in 1884 and eventually were the first to colonise Cameroon. The present territory was divided into two parts by France and Britain as League of Nations mandates after the World War I, bringing the Francophone and Anglophone dimensions to its present day culture, governance and international relations. Moreover, due to its cultural (250 ethnic and linguistic groups and several religions) and geographic diversity, Cameroon is also known as ‘Africa in miniature’. Moreover, with many rivers and lakes, thick forest, large agricultural land, and deposits of cobalt, iron, gold, diamond and oil, the country is rich with natural resources. In other words, the nature has been generous enough to make this country a success story as an independent state but has it really been so far?

“...due to its cultural (250 ethnic and linguistic groups and several religions) and geographic diversity, Cameroon is also known as ‘Africa in miniature’.”

representing up to 30% of GDP in 2009. Since 1986, state education has consistently received the largest budget share in the government; hence the primary school attendance rate in the country is close to 100%(2). There are six national universities some of which are the best higher education institutions in Central Africa. Finally, one of the, if not the most, proudest achievements of Cameroon is probably its national football team – les lions indomptables. Having qualified for the World Cup finals four times and won African Nations Cup four times, Indomitable Lions have probably become the best ambassador of the country.

Let’s begin with the ‘achievements’: to start with, Cameroon has enjoyed a long period of social and political stability since its independence, which is a rarity for African states, and the way that the power was handed over from its first President, Ahmadou Adijho to Paul Biya in 1982 in a peaceful manner played a significant role in this. In a regional context, apart from some border issues with Nigeria and other small problems with Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, Cameroon has also been at peace with its neighbours. The country with an over $2,500 GDP per capita (PPP) is relatively richer than many other subSaharan African countries and again equipped with relatively good roads, commercial ports, international airports and other infrastructure, its economy has built a substantial manufacturing basis around textile, timber, mining and food processing,

All these facts make a relatively positive reading for a country that has been independent for only 50 years, but the question is ‘are they really enough?’ Considering the country’s natural resources and the fact of a consistent political stability since its independence, the answer is probably ‘no, it is not’. In his conference inaugural speech, the President was defiant about the lack of achievements as he urged to consider the challenges they faced in their state building over the last 50 years: ‘We have undoubt-

14 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem

edly proceeded by trial and error. But could it have been otherwise? I have mentioned our unpreparedness and inexperience. I could as well have included hunger, pandemics, civil war, external pressure and even corruption to justify our failures. We prefer to accept responsibility and say: “we have done our best”.’

15 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence

bureaucracy have found it difficult to have an access to the President, creating a certain level of vacuum in decision making processes. Such a gap is also the main reason why many of my interviewees believed that the fight against corruption and attempts for a fairer wealth distribution have largely failed so far. They thought the President has always had the best intenNevertheless, it could be argued that Camtions to deal with these problems, and the eroon could have been economically richer establishment of the National Antiand infrastructurally much better equipped, Corruption Observatory in 2006 and reif it could have dealt with its two major cent imprisonment of several ministers on shortcomings which are the distribution of corruption charges are considered as indiwealth between elites and population in cators of this. Nevertheless, these measgeneral, and corrupures seem to be not tion. Having spent very effective so far, “corruption is clearly the most its entire postas according to independence Transparency Intersignificant challenge faced by the period under only national Corruption country today, but having said that two presidents, Perceptions Index another important difficulty may be the country has 2009, Cameroon only in stand-by position: the benefited from the was at the 146th future of Cameroon after stability this has place out of 180 brought. However, countries, putting it President Biya.” it also seems to around the same have created a level with such counstifled political environment in which for tries as Russia, Kenya and Zimbabwe. In example, being within the close circle of the fact, comparing with the 2007 Index the President seems to be considered as the corruption in Cameroon seems to have greatest achievement by those who govern relatively worsened since, as in that year the country. There are national and local Cameroon was at the 138th place out of elections, but it is a very rare occasion for 179 countries. the country’s National Assembly to block or change any legislation proposed by the As identified by all interviewees too, corrupPresident. Many people I talked to during tion is clearly the most significant challenge my visit complained about the ‘division’ befaced by the country today, but having said tween the President and population, as that another important difficulty may be otherwise, they always referred to him as only in stand-by position: the future of Cam‘father’ in an affectionate way. They wanted eroon after President Biya. After the last him to interact with Cameroonians more year’s amendment in the electoral law, 78 and see the problems in situ by visiting difyear old President will be able to run for the ferent parts of the country more often. office once again in the next year’s presiEven those at high levels of judiciary and dential elections. Having participated in

COMMENTARY | By Prof. Alpaslan Ozerdem

languages of the country and Cameroon is a member of both the Commonwealth of Nations and La Francophonie.

Cameroon’s Golden Anniversary of Independence

“The division between the Francophone majority and minority Anglophones seems to be considered as the most significant political fault-line that could be exploited for the creation of conflict dynamics in the country.”

Overall, my short visit to Cameroon has underlined the urgency of such a risk, and the country should become a key focus for conflict prevention for the international community, as it would be such a big loss for the region and Africa in general, if Cameroon falls apart by an intrastate armed conflict after such a long period of ‘peace’ since its independence. For most Cameroonians I talked to a ‘no-ending’ life for President Biya was the best solution for this problem, which not only reflected their ironic sense of humour with the future of their country but also how helpless they felt with such a conundrum. However, in a more proactive way, if there are any ways of international diplomacy that could be used as a means of conflict prevention, then they should be utilised as soon as possible for Cameroon to extend its political stability.

them, nobody has any doubts that he would also win them. From a Westerncentric liberal democracy perspective this may sound like a doomed and gloom story, as it would mean the extension of his power for another five or possibly more years, which would make him one of the longest serving Heads of State in Africa. However, this was not what most of my interviewees were afraid of and in fact, on the contrary, they thought the most significant danger for the country would be a sudden death of its ‘father’. The argument put forward by most of them was that the country has not been prepared for a smooth hand over from President Biya to the next president, and with a sudden death there would be a huge decision making vacuum which might result in an internal conflict. The division between the Francophone majority and minority Anglophones seems to be considered as the most significant political fault-line that could be exploited for the creation of conflict dynamics in the country. Many argued that the Anglophones have resentments towards the Francophone population for being discriminated in accessing to the national decision making processes and resources, though both are the official

Notes: * Alpaslan Ozerdem is a Professor of Peacebuilding at Coventry University. 1) Those countries that gained their independence in 1960, in a chronological order, are: Cameroon, Togo, Madagascar, Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, Benin, Niger, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Chad, Central African Republic, The Republic of The Congo, Gabon, Senegal, Mali, Nigeria and Mauritania. 2) State education budget would comprise the spending for the Ministry of Basic Education, the Ministry of Secondary Education, the Ministry of Higher Education and the Ministry of Employment and Vocational Training.

16 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci

For A Pro-Immigration Argument By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci*

17 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci

I For A Pro-Immigration Argument

n the last five years, parties standing in the UK elections have been forced to debate immigration. The 2005 elections were full of pretty “bigotted” discourses. The then Conservatives’ leader was appealing to the xenophobic vote by saying “are you thinking what I am thinking”. Luckily his party did not succeed. However, every other election since then has been dominated by far right arguments and policies. During the last decade, small parties with well known xenophobic stances set the scene while major parties tried to avert the tide by surrendering to some of these arguments.

myths rather than reality. People struggling during the crisis, particularly those at the lower end of the welfare league are wrongly placing the blame on immigrants. Welfare gap in the UK has widened even further under successive Labour governments. Casino banking in this country and elsewhere led taxpayers money to disappear into bankers pockets not only in the last two years but for decades. Similarly, the little Britain pretending to be a superpower alongside the US over the years caused lives of thousands lost in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as billions of Pounds wasted. These are the reasons for increasing poverty, high unemployment and uneven provision of public services across the UK. Detention camps where thousands of asylum seekers kept and a bare room allocated to a refugee couple in a council estate (or ruins) in the most deprived areas of British towns are not and cannot be the source of poverty or any other social problem in today’s Britain.

In line with the overall securitisation of migration in Europe and other advanced countries, the UK has moved towards a “tough” stance on immigration. This mainly meant human right abuses for the sake of homeland security and covert torture for millions of immigrants through additional hassles and occasional abuse. The Government’s attempts to control immigration have largely failed. As we know from evidence and experience from around the world, migration control is a myth (See Cornelius, Martin, and Hollifield 1994; Cornelius et al. 2004).

The pro-immigration argument can be built on any philosophical premises. From an essentialist point, we can argue that it is a basic right for people to choose where to live, where to travel to. Many argue that the key obstacles to pro-immigration policies are political and cultural rather than economic. Mass influxes of outsiders often cause worry among the host. At the other end of the debate comes the brain drain, a huge cost to sending areas. However, this should never bar the ability to move, a fundamental right.

It is no different in the UK. Although by definition and nature we can not know for sure, the volume of illegal immigrant stock in the UK is believed to be between 600 to 900 thousands by now. This added to the 5 million minority population in the country represents a “...the little Britain pretending significant issue. The anxieties the British pubto be a superpower alongside lic have are understandthe US over the years caused able given the fact that lives of thousands lost in nobody is communicating Afghanistan and Iraq as well the pro-immigration arguas billions of Pounds wasted.” ment. Thus these anxieties are largely based on

18 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Pierre Sane, Assistant Director-General at UNESCO introducing the book by Pecoud and Guchteneire, says “imagine a world without borders, where people

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ibrahim Sirkeci

ash cloud for Europe is expected to be over £2 billion. This can be something to use as a scale measuring the potential costs of zeroimmigration policies if applied in Europe. The world populations are strongly mixed with each other. Wherever you go in the world, no matter developed or developing country, you would simply see sizeable immigrant communities exist. Moreover, this is not a new phenomenon. The human history is full of mass migrations creating and recreating nations and countries. Nevertheless, pro-immigration governments taking charge is still very utopic. Similarly “open borders” will not be a reality anytime soon. There are big political and cultural obstacles for these changes. However, there is hope and more importantly a growing need for it.

“Even from a utilitarian perspective, the opinion leaders in countries like the UK have an obligation to inform the public that immigration has been a good thing for these countries.”

Note: * Ibrahim Sirkeci is a Reader in Demography at European Business School London, Regent’s College, London, UK. He is also the editor of Migration Letters journal. Email: [email protected] [email protected]

The key lies in the fact that solutions for many problems we face in the world today require some sort of a transnational cooperation. Environmental issues, poverty, disarmament, diseases, population growth, ethnic conflicts are all crying for global cooperation. Therefore, the nature of our lives and problems also points to pro-immigration.

References: 1) Cornelius, Wayne A., Philip L. Martin, and James F. Hollifield. 1994. Controlling immigration: a global perspective. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press. 2) Cornelius, Wayne A., Takeyuki Tsuda, Philip L. Martin, and James F. Hollifield. 2004. Controlling immigration: a global perspective. 2nd ed. / edited by Wayne A. Cornelius. [et al.] ed. Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press; London: Eurospan. 3) Pécoud, Antoine, and P. F. A. de Guchteneire. 2007. Migration without borders: essays on the free movement of people. Paris: UNESCO Publishing; New York: Berghahn.

Perhaps the Icelandic Volcano put everything into a context for us. The 6 days of eruptions and ash clouds spreading over Western Europe left millions of passengers stranded where they were as well as costing hugely for airline industry and other related industries. Excluding the indirect costs to other industries and the troubles passengers and families went through; the total bill of the

19 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

For A Pro-Immigration Argument

had the right to move freely from one country to another, to settle down, live and work wherever they wished” (2007: ix). Even from a utilitarian perspective, the opinion leaders in countries like the UK have an obligation to inform the public that immigration has been a good thing for these countries. Not the “bigoted” views but the truth must be spoken. Majority of doctors and nurses in British hospitals are of foreign origin. A significant portion of researchers in universities are from overseas. Yet, at the same time, millions of Britons are living abroad temporarily or permanently. One should not also forget that at individual and national level, there is a universal obligation to help the others in suffering. Asylum seekers must be welcomed and treated with dignity.

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan in the Middle East of st the 21 Century

By Dr. Ayla Gol*

“History teaches us clearly that the battle against colonialism does not always run straight away along the lines of nationalism. (Franz Fanon)(1)


COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol


ince the overthrow of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad and the de facto existence of Iraqi Kurdistan in northern Iraq, Ankara’s fear of the disintegration of the Turkish state has been severely intensified. In particular, a speculative map of the Middle East was published in the American Armed Forces Journal in 2005 that proposed to divide Iraq into three separate

territorial integrity that led to the construction of hegemonic discourses by the state. Moreover, an independent and prosperous oil-rich Kurdish state in Iraq has the potential to attract Turkey’s citizens of Kurdish ethnic origin to unite with Iraqi-Kurdistan(4). Hence, Ankara governments have continued resisting the de jure existence of the Kurdish Regional Government in Iraq and opted

Map 1: A New Map of the Middle East?(2)

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan

states: Sunni, Arab Shia and ‘free Kurdistan’ (See Map 1) with Iranian, Syrian and Turkish borders adjusted accordingly (3).

for establishing diplomatic and economic relations via Baghdad. When Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki banned the PKK from operating in Iraq in 2006 this was seen largely as a gesture to Turkey. Ankara accused northern Iraqi self-rule of supporting the PKK(5). While Ankara’s military incursions in northern Iraq occupied the attention of the international community between 2006 and 2009 it remains uncertain as to how the

The scenario of re-drawing the borders of ‘free Kurdistan’ in the Middle East reminded the historical clauses of the Treaty of Sevres of 1920. The possibility of a free Kurdistan has always been perceived as a real threat to Turkey’s national unity and

21 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol

pro-Islamic AKP government will reconcile its Kurdish issue in domestic politics in postliberation Iraq in 2010.

the AKP came to power in 2002 that cultural reforms have been passed through the Turkish Parliament. Undoubtedly, it was an integral part of an attempt to achieve Turkey’s fast-forward membership into the EU. Diplomatic and political pressure from Brussels to improve Ankara’s record in minority rights had positive impacts on the AKP policies towards the Kurds in its domestic and foreign affairs.

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan

Search for a Viable Solution? Democratic Engagement The Kurdish path to radicalisation and the subsequent rise of PKK terrorism was shaped by the repressive policies and hegemonic discourse of the authoritarian states that refused to accommodate ethnic diversity in Turkey and Iraq. On the one hand, a cultural and political expression of a distinct Kurdish ethnic identity was denied by the hegemonic discourses and, on the other, the emergence of a radical minority group among the Kurds that demanded the recognition of cultural rights and ethnic identity. The transformation of the movement from non-violent to violent was detrimental for Kurdish demands, which would be perceived as undemocratic and led the movement to a dead-end in the long run. It was only after

In domestic politics, a new process of democratic engagement with the Kurdish question was initiated that led to lifting previous bans on the Kurdish language in public and allowing parents to have Kurdish names for their children. The EU-led reforms relatively eased restrictions on public expressions of Kurdish ethnic identity that indicated significant progress in Turkey’s democratic credentials. During this process, the PKK’s decision to reinitiate the armed struggle on 1 June 2004 seems to be a paradoxical response that questions the

Map 2: Demographic distribution of Kurds in the Middle East(6)

22 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol

viability of democratic solutions. According to Tezcur, the PKK’s further radicalisation as a response to EU-induced democratic process disqualifies the argument that “fostering democracy would reduce the problems of ethnic conflict”(7). However, this argument is not only far from convincing but also shadowed by the burden of hegemonic discourses. Tezcür’s conclusion can be easily turned on its head by counter-arguments. As Waldman’s comparative study of Northern Ireland, the Basque country and Quebec indicated, Northern Ireland was too unstable to make democracy work and the same can be said for Spain, but succeeded in ending violence and finding democratic solutions. From a Kurdish perspective, there is a more powerful counter-argument that the EUinduced reforms can be interpreted not so much as democratic, but as mere pragmatic concessions aimed at promoting Turkey’s ‘democratic’ image for its EU membership(8). Moreover, in terms of the key regulations of Turkish law, there is no real progress in democratization with reference to the Kurdish reality in Turkey. As lucidly signaled by the AKP’s constantly changing policies, if Ankara is convinced that the EU will never accept Turkey’s membership despite the ‘democratic’ progress, Turkey’s proWestern orientation can be slowly but surely shifted towards the (Middle) East, where they can find better solutions to regional issues, including the Kurdish question.

“From a Kurdish perspective, there is a more powerful counter-argument that the EUinduced reforms can be interpreted not so much as democratic, but only pragmatic concessions to

The Iraqi Kurdistan and the post-liberation era

promote Turkey’s

In regional affairs, the controversial parliamentary elections in Iraq on 7 March 2010 introduced further complications to regional politics. Although it brought partial victory to the Iraqi National Movement under Ayad

‘democratic’ image for its EU membership.”

23 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan

Allawi's leadership, none of the parties secured a majority of seats to form a government according to the Iraqi constitution of 2005. After the parliamentary elections in Iraq President Obama's message spoken from the White House Rose Garden on March 7th, 2010, was very clear. He said that the US government supports “the right of the Iraqi people to choose their own leaders.” His speech indicated the following policy of change on three key issues: a) the Iraqi prime minister will be elected by Iraqis in Baghdad. b) The United States is no longer a central player in Iraq. c) The Kurdish leaders must take the initiative and use their influence to elect the right candidate. Moreover, this implied that the de facto Kurdistan in Iraq and the Kurdish self-rule should continue without the US presence in the country. All the US forces will be out of Iraq by the end of 2011(9). Iraq needs a stable government and a charismatic leader, like the American President Barak Obama, who has the power to speak for Iraqi people, including the Kurds, and voice their concerns over future policies.

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol

A new Iraqi government has to be sovereign cated Kurdish question more difficult to and legitimate to lead the country through resolve in contemporary Middle Eastern the crucial and most challenging stage of politics. the post-liberation era. There are pressing critical issues for the Iraqi government such Concluding remarks as preventing terrorism, establishing security and stability while building the instituIt is clear that future governments in Antions of the state and constructing the colkara and Baghdad must make democracy lective identity of a united nation, which inas a self-governing of the people for the peocludes the Arabic, the Mandaean, Shabak, ple work for all citizens. The Kurdish quesYezidi, Chaldo-Assyrian, Turkmen, Kurdish tion is the acid test of democracy promotion peoples. The national unification and the in the Middle East. Historical trends and 'reconciliation' will not suddenly appear ex recent events in Turkey and Iraq indicate nihilo among these that the demoethnic groups. graphic composition Hence, building of the Middle East is trust between Iraq’s more complicated “It is clear that future ethnic groups than many analysts governments in Ankara and should be the key and policy-makers Baghdad must make objective that will assumed with its ultimately transform strong ramifications democracy as a self-governing Iraq into a state of of regional politics. If of the people for the people citizenship and the I may recall Franz work for all citizens.” rule of law. This is Fanon’s words at the exactly what needs head of this paper: to be done to pro“History teaches us tect the rights of clearly that the batKurds and other tle against colonialethnic groups as well as individuals in Iraq. ism does not always run straight away along The rise of insurgencies and subsequent the lines of nationalism(10). The resistance sectarian violence since the parliamentarian of Kurds against colonialism and the hegeelections in March 2010 brought Iraq to monic discourses of the Turkish state were the brink of civil war. Sunni anger over being reinforced by the rise of Kurdish nationallargely excluded from government in the ism. The subsequent policies of the Turkish post-liberation Iraq reinforces fears that state based on their ‘assimilation’ and the insurgents are regrouping in Iraq. The idea denial of their ethnic identity led to the path of transforming Iraq into a functioning state of radicalisation and violence. under the rule of law is easier said than done. A stable and democratically governed The Kurdish question also shows that Islam Iraq is also obliged to prevent its strong is not necessarily the main cause of either neighbours (Turkey, Iran and Syria) from radicalisation or violent terrorism. The interfering in Baghdad’s internal affairs. This forces of ethnic nationalism with its separais not an easy task for either Iraq or Turkey tist tendencies and identity politics can be that makes the historically already complistronger than religious ties. In similar vain,

24 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Ayla Gol

Forces Journal, which originally included the map in 06/06/1833899 However, the map is no longer available on this site (Accessed on 27 January 2010). See also P. W. Galbraith, The End of Iraq: How American Incompetence Created a War Without End, Simon & Schuster, 2006, which suggests a policy of American withdrawal from Iraq by breaking the country into three parts: an independent Kurdistan, Sunni and Shiite Arab states. 4) Robert Olson, ‘Kurdish Nationalism, Capitalism, and State Formation in KurdistanIraq,’ in the Evolution of Kurdish nationalism, 205 5) ‘American troops among nearly 50 dead in Iraq,’ The New York Times, 13 August 2006. 6) The estimated demographic distribution of Kurds in the Middle East see free-kurdistanmaps.htm (Accessed on 23 January 2010) 7) G. M. Tezcur, ‘When Democratization Radicalizes? The Kurdish Nationalist Movement in Turkey’, Journal of Peace Research (September 18, 2009). Available at SSRN: abstract=1451562 8) Kurdistan National Assembly of Syria Kurdish Nationalism from World War I through 2007: 23/01/2010 18:41 index.php?op tion=com_content&task=view&id=573 &Itemid=71 Page 6 of 18 9) K. Katzman, Iraq: Politics, Elections and Benchmarks, CRS Report for Congress, 2010. mideast/RS21968.pdf 10) Franz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, Penguin, 2001: 119

Notes: *Lecturer in International Politics, Aberystwyth University ([email protected]) 1) Franz Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth, Penguin, 2001: 119 2) graphics/war/ ralph_peters_solution_to_mideast_medi um.jpg See the before and after versions of the map (Accessed on 27 January 2010). 3) See R. Peters, ‘Blood Borders: How a better Middle East would look,’ Armed

25 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

The Fear of a Free Kurdistan

the debates over ‘silent assimilation’ of Kurds in Turkey and the PKK terrorism fed directly into twenty-first century identity politics and the Turkish government’s policy of ‘democratic engagement’. In particular, the historicised and contextualised analysis of the Kurdish radicalisation and the rise of PKK terrorism overlap on the search for non-violent solutions and, therefore, democratic engagement is the acid test of Turkish and Iraqi democracies. Politically, although it is still too early to predict whether a democratic solution to the Kurdish question can be found, based on the experiences of Irish, Basque and Québec politics it is paradoxically too late to acknowledge the relationship between radicalisation, terrorism and the denial of ethnic identity. After all, these ethnic conflicts overlap on the same crucial dimension of identity politics: to be Irish is not to be English; to be Basque is not to be Spanish and to be Kurdish is not to be Turkish or Iraqi. Hence, suppressing the expression of ethnic minority rights and identities by undemocratic ways is more likely to further radicalisation, violent insurgencies and terrorism in the Middle East of the 21st century.

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Kurtulus Gemici

Taming Rating Agencies By Dr. Kurtulus Gemici*

26 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Kurtulus Gemici


lchemy thrived in seeking how to turn ordinary, worthless metals into gold. To the dismay of countless alchemists, that goal has been rather elusive in the world of metals. Not so in the world of modern finance. The business of making golden assets out of worthless ones, a relatively recent innovation, has been a particularly lucrative practice in financial markets. The name of this game is structured finance and securitization. It uses the tools of modern finance to trans-

kets and its institutions. A new amendment to the financial regulation bill, proposed by Sen. Al Franken and approved in the Senate on May 13, aims to limit the considerable influence a handful of agencies exercise over credit ratings. The central idea is to establish a board, consisting largely of private investors, to determine which agency would rate newly issued asset-backed securities. This regulatory entity, named The Credit Rating Agency Board in the amendment, will also supervise the performance of rating agencies. The avowed goal of this legislation is to put a stop to the practice of inflating ratings on securities backed by assets such as house mortgages. It’s a nice idea. Establishing a Credit Rating Agency Board might perhaps address conflicts of interest, collusion, and corruption in the business of rating credit and financial instruments. However, conflicts of interest and collusion are not why sophisticated rating agencies such as Moody's and Standard & Poor's handed triple A ratings to financial instruments consisting of a pool of subprime mortgages, and why such ratings turned out to be poor assessments of credit quality. Rather, rating agencies believed they could mitigate risk through the application of their own alchemist’s formula: they would use the knowledge and tools of financial engineers, academicians, and bankers to transform highly risky and dangerous financial instruments into risk-free ones through the precise measurement and quantification of market uncertainty.

f o r m highly risky or junk assets into something shinier. Once these securities receive good ratings from institutions such as Moody's or Standard & Poor's, they become legitimate investment instruments that can be used in all types of financial transactions. This is, then, the alchemy of contemporary finance: converting assets once considered unacceptable for financial transactions into prime investment commodities. There is a growing consensus that this alchemy was a crucial element of the financial boom—so much fool’s gold— that ended with the meltdown of the world financial system between 2007 and 2008.

Securitization is the primary tool through which financial market practitioners engineer high-quality financial instruments out of assets such as subprime mortgages. This practice involves pooling risky assets and then slicing this pool into different tranches. Each tranche is endowed with

Convinced that the financial meltdown of 2007-2008 was at least partially a consequence of deregulation and lax supervision, American politicians are eager to pass legislation to curb the power of financial mar-

27 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Taming Rating Agencies

“…the financial meltdown of 2007-2008 was at least partially a consequence of deregulation and lax supervision…”

COMMENTARY | By Dr. Kurtulus Gemici

Taming Rating Agencies

different rights about the cash flows originating from the asset pool, meaning that the risk of default is distributed unevenly among different tranches. While equity tranches bear the risk of the first three to six percent of defaults, senior tranches are protected from a large percentage of defaults. As a result, each tranche gets a different credit rating, creating the opportunity to obtain triple A instruments even from assets that are considered to be below investment grade.

that housing prices would rise forever and miscalculated the risk of simultaneous defaults. In the meantime, by contributing to the creation of vast amounts of credit and leverage in the financial system, they enabled the inflationary spiral in the housing sector. What failed them was the particular culture—assumptions, expectations, knowledge set, toolkits, and mathematical models—through which they assessed risk and uncertainty in financial markets. That is why legislation aiming to stop corruption and conflict of interest in credit rating agencies is not sufficient to stop inflationary ratings of essentially risky assets.

Securitization, as a tool in financial engineering, involves specific assumptions and projections about the housing market and how defaults in underlying mortgages occur over time. It requires knowledge— necessarily probabilistic—about the percentage of mortgages that will default in the future. Most importantly, it involves assumptions about the percentage of defaults that are likely to occur at the same time. If a large percentage of the assets underlying a securitized financial product default simultaneously, even the senior tranches are not effectively protected from the default risk. That is indeed the moment when the logic of securitization fails miserably, with the implication that the ratings accorded to different tranches become erroneous.

Once considered the darlings of Washington and the source of indisputable wisdom, financial markets and their institutions are again les bêtes noires of politics. This political environment creates the opportunity structure for the re-regulation of financial institutions and markets, which is a muchneeded and belated adjustment in the relationship between finance and society. However, such an adjustment should be efficacious in the long-run. And efficacy in the long-run necessitates broad changes concerning existing tools, assumptions, expectations, and models employed in the world of finance. That task is, of course, considerably more taxing than establishing a regulatory board charged with supervision. Alas, there is no viable alternative to sweeping cultural change in finance. Otherwise the current reform and re-regulation movement will simply miss the target, and financial engineers will once again assume their roles as modern-day alchemists. Until the next explosion.

That is exactly what went wrong with the rating agencies before the meltdown of 2007-2008. Ratings institutions assumed

“...there is no viable alternative to sweeping cultural change in

Note: * Kurtulus Gemici is a Visiting Scholar at New York University.


28 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Platonic Lovers Chasing Nukes Around the World By Ozgur Tufekci*

29 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Ozgur Tufekci

T Chasing Nukes Around the World

he 2010 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) held in May 2010 at UN Headquarters in New York. The first day of the monthlong conference was dominated by Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And, as an expected consequence, he was harshly criticised by the US, the British, and the French delegations.

most 45.000 warheads(2). Still, Russia maintains the largest stockpile in the world. Now let us come back to present. Currently, around the world there are 9 countries having nuclear arms; Russia, the U.S., France, China, Britain, Israel, Pakistan, India, North-Korea. Apart from that, 430 nuclear power reactors are being operated. Furthermore, many of the world’s oil rich states are in the queue to have nuclear power plants. What makes them to think that they need that technology is awareness of their oil reserves will not last much longer.

During the conference, in a nutshell, Mr Ahmadinejad said that “the US, not Iran, is the real threat to world peace... Regrettably, the government of the United States has not only used nuclear weapons, but also continues to threaten to use such weapons against other countries, including Iran(1).”

However, according to the US, once countries have the nuclear power technology, it will not last to manage to develop weapons of their own. That is why: the American strategy, begun during the Bush administration, is to pre-empt countries, in particular the Middle East countries, to develop nuclear weapons. From the perspective of Ellen Tauscher, undersecretary of state for

Let us stop here... And go back almost 60 years; start from scratch.  The United States is the first producer of nuclear weapons.  The United States conducted a nuclear weapon test in 1945 for the first time in history.  The United States dropped two bombs onto the Japanese cities Hiroshima on August of 6th, 1945 and Nagasaki on August of 9th 1945; killed tens of thousands of people outright.  The United States and Russia were the two parts of nuclear arms race during the Cold War.  Between 1945 and 1990, the US built more than 70.000 nuclear warheads and bombs.  However, Russia managed to beat the US in this race and in 1986; Russia had the world’s largest nuclear arsenal, al-

arms control and international security, that is the right formula for the Middle East(3). In this context, one of the most significant issues in the agenda of the majority of the world leaders is to prevent Iran and then Middle East countries from developing nuclear power reactors and nuclear weapons,

30 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Ozgur Tufekci

respectively. With bearing this mind, can we say that Mr Ahmadinejad’s speech in the conference was a predictable speech; although it is an argument which has been put forward by a controversial figure? To me, it was. However, the crucial point to take into account is what is the stake which makes people so furious about Iran’s nuclear issue?

taken? To impose more sanctions on Iran? To invade Iran in order to bring stability and democracy to the region? Or, to decrease considerable amount of nuclear weapons as a sign of good intention.

There are several assertions, regarding the stakes. Let me talk about some of them. If so-called rogue state(4), Iran, have a nuke, she can use it against Israel. If Iran has a nuke, she can turn upside-down the balance of power. And, last but not least is that if Iran has a nuke, this situation could provoke ‘nuclear arms race in Middle East’. The last one has been brought about by Joe Biden, U. S. Vice-President, on May of 5th, 2010. If it is true, what are the measures should be


13.000* 9.400**











India North-Korea

60-80 ?


Herein, should we ask whose status quo? From the perspective of Israel and the U.S., the status quo is on track. What about from the perspective of the rest of the Middle East countries; rest of the world. Is the status quo tolerable for the rest of the world or until when will be tolerable?


* Approximately 4,850 of the Russian warheads are operational or active. The status of the other 8,150 warheads is unclear. Some portion may be in reserve with the balance retired and awaiting dismantlement. ** Approximately 5,200 of the U.S. warheads are in the military stockpile (about 2,700 deployed); 4,200 retired warheads are awaiting dismantlement. *** This number was revealed by William Hague (Foreign Secretary) on 25th May 2010.

As for making it tolerable, there is a theory, called ‘Deterrence Theory’. That is one of the relevant phrases with regard to the use of nuclear weapons. According to this theory, having nuclear weapons prevents potential aggressor from aggression. Now, when we look at the Middle East, only state who has nuclear power is Israel. The actual size and composition of Israel’s nuclear stockpile is around 300. Let us forget Iran’s claims that ‘we are not

31 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Chasing Nukes Around the World

So far, the sanction option has been commonly used to prevent the Middle Eastern states to have nuclear weapons. On the other hand, a couple of times states have resorted to the use of force. When we look at the near history of Middle East, two incidents draw the attention. The first one was in 1981. Israeli jets bombed an Iraqi reactor at Osirak. And the second one was in September 2007; again Israeli jets destroyed a Syrian reactor, secretly. In these two incidents, the main rational behind was these reactors might have produced plutonium that could fuel bombs; and then, these countries could harm the status quo.

COMMENTARY | By Ozgur Tufekci

Chasing Nukes Around the World

developing a nuclear weapon’. Think that Iran aspires to have the nuclear reactor technology and become one of the nuclear power in the world. What could be the reason for that? What about to protect herself from the regional or global risks, from other potential rogue states (as you know all rogue states are not friends of each other) or to become a ‘Nuclear Power’ in order to be a global actor.

Notes: * Ozgur Tufekci is a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Birmingham. Email: [email protected] 1) Independent, 04 May 2010, http:// politics/ahmadinejad-refuses-to-curtailnuclear-ambitions-as-weapons-talks-begin1961500.html 2) Stephen I. Schwartz, 50 Facts About U.S. Nuclear Weapons, http:// nucweapons/50.aspx [Accessed on 08/05/2010]. 3) New York Times, 2 May 2010, http:// world/03nuke.html 4) Michael Lind explains the term as “Rogue state is a term of emotional propaganda, not sober analysis. The rogue-state rationale is employed when American leaders wish to rally support for a policy whose actual purpose -- increasing or reinforcing American military hegemony in its European, Asian or Middle Eastern sphere of influence -- cannot be explained to the public” in his article in The National Interest on May/June 2007. a r t i c l e s / 2 0 0 7 / beyond_american_hegemony_5381 5) Bulletin of The Atomic Scientists, Vol. 65, No. 6, 2009. http:// thebulleti n.m / content/ x m 3 8 g 5 0 6 5 3 4 3 5 6 5 7 / ? p=ac84fde4a9f54939b7a2bac6688eb44 b&pi=9 6) A nuclear agreement has been signed by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. According to this agreement, Iranian stockpile of enriched uranium will be transferred to Turkey. In return, Iran will be supplied with the more highly-enriched material used in medical isotopes.

Politics is a logical issue. That is why; leaders should behave logically. When you implement a plan, you should check it results, consistently. If it does not give you what you want, you should find out another plan. In this case, to some extent the sanctions [or fear of being given official sanctions(6)] have worked. However, it does not mean that it will last forever. Sooner or later, Iran or another potential rogue state will win out. So, if the leaders want to be a logical, why do not they try to dismantle all nuclear powers instead of deciding who can or not become a nuclear power. Recently, the leaders have decided that a state is suitable to have a nuclear reactor. That state is the United Arab Emirates, which has awarded a $20.4 billion contract to a South Korean consortium to build four 1400 MWe reactors by 2020. Jordan, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia are on the queue. What makes these countries different from Iran? Their ProWestern leaders? What about in the future? Who can ensure that one of these states will be a threat for the World Peace? Let us face it; this is not a peaceful solution. This attitude only escalates the hatred. That is why; the parties should gather and reduce the stockpile of Nuclear Arms more than what they have done so far. Or, the best is to say their farewell to Nuclear Arms.

32 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Cemil Cengiz

Democratic Opening, Martyrs and Journalism By Cemil Cengiz*


COMMENTARY | By Cemil Cengiz

Democratic Opening, Martyrs and Journalism


he leading political party of Turkey, AKP (Justice and Development Party) has launched a series of solutions to the problems concerning the Kurdish minority in Turkey under the title of “Democratic Opening” by November 2008. Whilst the project was called “Kurdish Opening” at the earlier stages, the Government announced that the Democratic Opening was the first part of the “National Unity and Fellowship Project”(1) which is a wider project that aims to provide more civil liberties for all society in Turkey.

pressure put by the opposition parties and some media groups. In order to instill morale into the society, on 27th of May 2009, Turkish President Abdullah Gul said, “Whether you call the problem the ‘Kurdish issue’ or the ‘South-Eastern issue’ this is the most important problem of Turkey. The later we leave it to resolve the problem, the harder it will get.” The same day, in Hakkari, which is a city located in the south-eastern region of Turkey, 7 Turkish soldiers were killed over a mine blast. The following texts are snippets of the story about the blast from three of the leading Turkish broadsheets after the incident:

As the mass media is known to be the fourth power (some cases in Turkish history showed it was even the first, for more see ‘February the 28 Post-modern coup’), the Government’s first guests to whom they would give some information about the project and ask for suggestions about the Kurdish problem were journalists. To think in a rational way, the very first people to persuade were journalists since they have the power to convince society. Thus, Besir Atalay, Interior Minister and Coordinator of the Democratic Opening, invited a number of journalists who were believed to be “reasonable” people. Later, Devlet Bahceli who is the leader of opposing Nationalist Party labelled the journalists as “12 evil men” a term which the media highlighted more than the opening itself. Meeting with the journalists did not achieve the government’s purpose because of the intense

Hurriyet 7 Martyrs in Cukurca The cruel attack occurred at 23:30 yesterday. The mine placed by the terrorists was remotely blasted while an army lorry carrying soldiers to the operation point was passing over it. Sabah Mine trap: 6 Martyrs in Cukurca 6 soldiers were killed over the mine that was placed by PKK terrorists was remotely blasted while the soldiers were carried to the operation point near Iraqi border. ‘...the mine was previously placed into a trench by PKK terrorists’ Zaman

“...the mass media is known to be the fourth power (some cases in Turkish history showed it was even the first, for more see ‘February the 28 Post-modern coup’),...”

6 Martyrs in Cukurca ‘According to the sources, the terrorist organisation (PKK) blasted the mine they previously planted into the road while a group of soldiers were walking over it.’

34 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

COMMENTARY | By Cemil Cengiz

‘According to the district officials, the soldiers were going on foot while the attack was done. ‘ ‘Martyr Private Ozkan Dumlu laid to the rest amid tears...’ ‘Private Adil Yildiz died a martyr over blast had 55 days to discharge’ All the three newspapers above saddled the PKK with the responsibility of the mine blast without verification. Turkish community and the mass media are familiar to see new martyr news in the media because the Turkish Army has been fighting against the PKK terrorists for more than 25 years. This situation caused a specific presupposition in the minds of the public that in case of an incident resulting the death of a Turkish soldier, community would directly say he was killed by the PKK. In addition, a short while after the incident, TSK, Turkish Armed Forces stated that the attacks were carried out by a group of PKK terrorists that crossed the Iraqi border. This official statement and presuppositions were enough to convince the mass media.

Although a longitudinal analysis of framing the ‘martyr news’ by the Turkish media should be done to put the case clearly, this one sample adequately shows how much the mass media is able to nearly stop a vital process in Turkey. The situation raises questions about whether the mass media should take a particular side in an ongoing clash or whether what is expected from journalism is only to inform society about incidents. What I personally believe is that the first thing to democratize in Turkey is journalism and give enough of confidence to journalists to independently write what needs to be known without being obligated to be ‘his master’s voice’ of the official sources.

A few days before the blast, Turkish PM Erdogan had stated that he could make an appointment with Ahmet Turk who is the former leader of the Kurdish Party, DTP. It was important news because Erdogan had previously refused to meet DTP officials because they did not explicitly deny their relation to the terrorist organisation, PKK. One day after the blast, Erdogan stated that he cancelled the appointment due to the mine blast and added ‘Every time you decide to step forward, mines start blasting’. Meanwhile, the majority of columnists, newspapers and TV channels implied that a Kurdish Opening would not help the resolution of problems and was not needed when an armed conflict was going on. So this situation forced the government to halt the open-

Notes: * Cemil Cengiz is an MA student at Brunel University and a freelance journalist. 1.Further information: The Book of Democratic Opening (Prepared by the Government/Turkish) demokratik_acilim_kitabi.pdf

35 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Democratic Opening, Martyrs and Journalism

ing process and change the agenda. However, about three months after the incident, a sound recording of the dialogues of some military officials who were charged in the region was anonymously uploaded to YouTube. The sound file involved a series of telephone conversations between the generals stating that the mine that killed 6 Turkish soldiers belonged to the Turkish Army’s inventory and that it was ‘forgotten’ that it was planted in the region. After the news had broad repercussions in the mass media, public prosecutors launched an investigation into the allegations. However, the most important and fragile process, the Democratic Opening was significantly influenced in a negative way because of the impetuous attitude of the mass media towards the government’s new plan.



Keynote Lecture:

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order: Theoretical Background and Practical Implementation

By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu Foreign Minister of the Republic of Turkey

At the Conference on Turkey's Foreign Policy in a Changing World At the University of Oxford

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu


state of Ottoman Empire. In this, Turkey is meant to shoulder responsibilities towards neighbouring regions, but excluding NeoOttomanist intensions as Davutoglu claimed. Undertaking so-called formidable problems, with the motivation of reconciliation and negotiation, seemingly brought into existence a unique and friendly-oriented Turkish foreign policy reading; consistent with the traditional foreign policy implementations of Turkey so far. On the other hand, it should also be mentioned that his zero-problem aimed political approaches are in some cases radically at odds with some of the barely conservative scholars’ interpretations of Turkish foreign policy; such seen in the relations with Armenia. This is probably due to the hesitations and critiques which reflect the embedded perceptions and conceptualizations of threat that neighbouring countries have claimed to have posed for decades in Turkey.

His speech devoted to reassert the historically-rooted and seemingly irresolvable problems, however, showing care not to touch a nerve. Prof. Davutoglu smoothly positioned his (as he called) humble opinions on the side of reconciliation and dialog with the neighbouring zones. He talked about two foreign policy measures in his speech; historical and geographical continuity and zeroproblem aim, driven by a motivation that acknowledges Turkey as the successor

Regardless of any political and ideological comprehension, Prof. Davutoglu alleged to be capable of securing his name to be given to the era of his occupancy. We hope his result-oriented foreign affairs vision will lead to a well-integrated and securely-bonded neighbourhood as he argues. In the transcription we stuck to the original speech without attempting to alter the expressions, except in some cases where the meaning tends to shift. We embarked on a categorization of the keynote lecture to facilitate the reading of the speech with respect to the own course of the speech and to the signposting language used by Prof. Davutoglu. Husrev Tabak Managing Editor of JGA and PR Postgraduate Student at SSEES, UCL

“Regardless of any political and ideological comprehension, Prof. Davutoglu alleged to be capable of securing his name to be given to the era of his occupancy. We hope his result-oriented foreign affairs vision will lead to a well-integrated and securely-bonded neighbourhood as he argues.”

37 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

We, as members of CESRAN, attended to the conference entitled “Turkey’s foreign policy in a changing world” held at the St Antony’s College of University of Oxford in which Minister of Turkish Foreign Affairs Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu delivered a speech (a keynote lecture) on “Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order” on 1 May 2010. The participant/speaker profile of the threeday long conference was presumably giving clues about how eloquent and powerful the keynote lecture of Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu would be. However, before the conference, we were planning to issue just an observation paper or short report. Nonetheless, after listening to Prof. Davutoglu, we decided to publish the whole lecture which, we believe, is very valuable.

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu


Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order: Theoretical Background and Practical Implementation

“When we look at the long term historical transformation of the search for global order I can say [that] there are four different stages and now we are at the fourth stage.”

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu … In my presentation, firstly I would like to mention and underline certain issues about the historical transformation of global world order… Then I will try to underline the main problems, today we are facing about global governance, in political economy and cultural fields. Thirdly I will focus on Turkish position within the context of global and regional order. And then I will try to give some issues [which have] impacts on Turkish foreign policy…


for example, it emerged right at the centre of Afro-Eurasia and there was a geopolitical continuity from Macedonia up to Afghanistan or Egypt. Even before that, when we look at the Persepolis, the Persian Empire, its geographical continuity was the main imagination of the leaders or imperial structures. They had a centre and geographical zone of control/order and there were certain cities and centres which were able to transact in economic and cultural sense. The cities in the name of Alexander was formation of this character of the traditional world order; geographical continuity, political centre, economic order and cultural centres of transaction. This continued until 18th-19th century and almost all traditional imperial structures had this structure after the Roman Empire like Han Empire in China from the East, … Abbasids, later Ottomans. This was a traditional geopolitics, although they did not know the concept of geopolitics but that was the structure.

Historical Transformation of World Order

When we look at the long term historical transformation of the search for global order I can say [that] there are four different stages and now we are at the fourth stage. It is important to understand the shift of the concept of the order. Of course this is just a general framework of conceptualisation in order to understand the existing problems... In the history we had geopolitics of world order. Let me say [firstly] the traditional one. a. Traditional World Order and Geopolitics

b. Colonial World Order and Geopolitics

… In that geopolitics of traditional world order there was a geographical continuity and economic centrality, and different cultural presence of certain locations… When we look at the Empire of Alexander the Great,

The second phase of concepts of order was the colonial order. In this new concept and new geopolitics there was a geographical discontinuity. Those who are colonizing forces, they did not want to control fully eve-

38 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

and the Cold War geopolitics brought a new reality that this time whole world was divided in two big geopolitics so that, for example South Yemen was pro-Soviet; so the natural geographical zones were divided. Turkey was in NATO; Syria was closed to Warsaw Pact; and Turkish-Syria relations were not anymore relations of two divided world...

“Geography seemingly has lost some significance because we have internet, technological facilities, and extraordinary potential of interaction.”

d. New Geopolitics: Expectations from the “New Order”

rything in the sense like Alexander the Great or the Ottomans when they came to new conquered lands. For example British relations with India or French relations with the French Colonies in West Africa; it was not like the relations between Romans and conquered lands or Alexander the Great and the Mesopotamia or Ottomans [and] Balkans. Indian economy was linked to the British Economy; but not in the sense that for example Balkan economy or Black Sea economy was linked to Istanbul. This was totally different geopolitics; geocolonial geopolitics brought its all logic. And it also created certain alienations in certain regions. For example, Malaysian economy was controlled by British, Indonesian economy was controlled by Dutch. So regional economies were divided or were alienated from each other; Syrian economy was under French control, Iraqi economy was under British control. So, the world was divided by the colonial orders. c. Cold War World Order and Geopolitics The third stage was geopolitics of Cold War. Again, these national geographical continuousnesses were alienated from each other

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Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

… [In] the post-Cold War era, we have faced many difficulties and now we are in search of a new world order but I do not mean the concept in the 1990s. This time, there is a new geopolitics. Geography seemingly has lost some significance because we have internet, technological facilities, and extraordinary potential of interaction. But at the same time, the traditional geographical continuity did emerge again after the collapse of colonial structures, after the collapse of Cold-War geopolitics. Now, we have a new era where in all these alienated regions started to interact again in cultural or economical or political sense. And now we are facing a new reality. What do we have now in our hands? First of all, in the sense of global order, we have a question of global political governance. Today there is a challenge of how and to which institutions we can establish a new concept of order. In another speech, I referred to the modern era; after each global war there was a new search for a new balance of power and a new structure of order in Europe. For example, after the Thirty Years wars [with] Westphalia Peace there was a new concept of order; after the Napoleonic Wars we had Congress of Vienna; after the First World War we had the League of Nations; after the Second Cold War we had the United

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

Nations. But, after the Cold-War, it was a war in different instruments and in different zones, there was no such a congress; there was no [such] a peace; there was no [such] a global consensus on the basic values, from 1989 until 2001. We had a long era of cease-fire. Cease-fires were located in the traditional geopolitical zones; frozen conflicts, unresolved issues. Still we are dealing with the question of how to reform the United Nations… because the UN reflected partially colonial order; partially Cold War order. But now there are new faces; there are new risen powers.

ii. Global Economic Order

Second problem of international global order is economic global order. Again same year, in 2008, a financial crisis emerged in United States. Many of us thought the USA is a huge economy, they can contain this crisis, in a few months it became an economic crisis not financial crisis; in five-six months it became a social crisis for many societies because it has created a big issue of unemployment. Why? Because still there is no new financial architecture of fitting to the new economy. The financial architecture today; i. Future of the Global what we have is some “There should be a Governance reforms, structures of new concept of global Bretton Woods expolitical governance This is the main actly like the question. The which is inclusive not United Nafuture of global tions. All the power-centric only. governance brings financial instituThere should be us a question of how to tions, IMF, World certain new values reform, restructure reBank, they are from the we have to inject.” gional orders; without concept of order, from having regional or subColonial era to the Cold regional orders there War era in 1940cannot be global order. Now this 1950s. There is a huge need of reworld cannot be carried in balance. forming international global economy. There should be a new concept of global What will we need:… New value, a just dispolitical governance which is inclusive not tribution; without a just distribution of ecopower-centric only. There should be certain nomic values, there can not be an econominew values we have to inject. I will come cal order. Productivity is important, but just what should be these values. Security and is [as] important as the productivity. I will freedom are two main searches for humancome how Turkey is approaching to this beings throughout the centuries. This new issue. global political governance should be based on a new concept of security and freedom iii. Global Cultural Order for all humanity not just for some people, for some continents, for some nations. And There should be a new concept of global there should be an inclusive political cultural order. The cultural concepts of 19th structure. century [and] 20th century cannot be valid

40 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

today. A Eurocentric cultural approach cannot be shaping the future of humanity. We have to be friend to each other. Usually, we are in our own test tube, we [have been taught] in an environment, in a Eurocentric environment and do you think that it is the history and this is the future. This is not any more so. Chinese culture is reviving, Indian culture is reviving. Chinese economy is reviving; parallel to this Indian economy is reviving. Latin American economy is reviving. There is a need of a new inclusive cultural order. Without that, thinking that all other nations will be enlightened by our European history, we will be losing the momentum of the history, history is now in a very dynamic shape; there is a huge transformation. Therefore, there is a need of a new concept of order in political, economic and cultural sense.

“A Eurocentric cultural approach cannot be shaping the future of humanity. ... There is a need of a new inclusive cultural order.”

2. New Global Order and Turkish Positioning: The Revival a. Pro-Active Vision: Historical Responsibility and Geographical Continuity What is Turkey doing now, just, where I see us since I said Turkish Global Vision? Why… are we so active in foreign policy, within this context? i. Historical Responsibility When we look at Turkey, whether we like or dislike, there is a historical fact that Turkey is the successor of the last traditional state of order, Ottoman State. Ottoman State was the last example of the traditional geopolitics. When I say this, some of you may think that now I will start to speak NeoOttomanism. I have never used this concept and I do not think that Ottomanism could be a trend but if you want to understand the

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Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

difficulties of responsibilities of Turks today, you have to understand the traditional concept of order. Because Ottoman State represented Kadim. When they used Kadim, they did not use it by coincidence. They were saying that “my order is the last order of this tradition coming from Alexander, Romans, Byzantine, and Persian tradition”. … …….. Now, what is the political consequence of this, I want to say, whenever there is a new crisis around us, all these people or nations, they [turn] their face to Turkey and they have certain expectations from Turkey. We realized this in 1990’s when the Bosnian war erupted. In 1960s and 70s, we did not have such a question. Suddenly, we realized there is a Bosnian issue, it means a Balkan issue. Why? Because of the end of the Cold War geopolitics, there was a new era and all these nations had certain expectations from Turkey… … Let me give you just an example, Cengiz [Çandar] Bey and Soli [Özel] Bey knows this… We went to Afghanistan together; we visited North Afghanistan, Balkh. The [governor] of Balkh welcomed us, we were sitting and our journalist friends were with us. We did not say this is an official meeting, they witnessed this. The [governor] of Balkh started to say “welcome minister”, est. words of

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

hospitality, then he said “we need a hospital Turkish minority from Bulgaria came to this in that street, we need a school in that camp, during Bosnian war Bosnian came, neighbourhood, and we need a mosque in during Macedonia war Macedonians came, another corner”. He started to give a list. I during Kosovo war Albanians came. So, said “one minute -Not `that one minute`! similarly, when there was a pressure from laughs- I called council general and took a Saddam on Kurds in Northern Iraq, they coordinator, then I said “please take note came to Turkey. In one night, 500,000 we will do all these things”. Cengiz Bey told Kurdish innocent people came to Turkey. me, “I think it is so strange. He is requesting We cannot say “no, we are now another from you as if you are minister of Afghanination state, no.” Turkey had to accept this. stan or he is the governor of Konya”. … I said … yes, this is North Afghanistan, Balkh. We may think that we are Turkey, we do not ii. Geographical Continuity have any interest there, we will not take oil there or no eco[Being] a successor of nomic interests but “Turkish-Syrian territory is not the last traditional natural at all. Throughout the they expect this imperial structure in centuries, there was not such a from us because the Middle East and border between Turkey and they think that IsBalkans and CaucaSyria or between [Gazi]Antep tanbul was the censia… this is some speand Aleppo. tre of a traditional cial character but ... imagination of orgeographical continuTurkish-Georgian border is not der and Turkey has ity is another characa natural border at all. Batumi and Trabzon were not so to do. ter of Turkish public. alienated from each other like None of the Turkish in during the Cold War.” One week after Afterritories were fixed, ghanistan I went to static territory, except Sancak, Serbia. Exactly the same logic, they Turkish Ottoman territory. For example, said “we need hospital, we need gynaecolTurkish-Syrian territory is not natural at all. ogy”… we built a clinic in Sancak. Now, I am Throughout the centuries, there was not not a minister of an initial state only. … this such a border between Turkey and Syria or is the difference of Turkish geographical and between [Gazi]Antep and Aleppo. Antep and historical background and because of these Aleppo, they were “twin cities” for thouexpectations, I cannot say, for example, in sands of years but suddenly there was a Sancak people are calling me neoborder. First it was a national border beOttomanist. … They expect and if we cannot tween Turkey and Syria then it became a solve their problems, they will come to Turborder of two poles during Cold War and key. we had to protect that border by mines. Turkish-Georgian border is not a natural In Kirklareli, there is a refugee camp, Gazi border at all. Batumi and Trabzon were not Osman Pasa Refugee Camp; it is like a baso alienated from each other like in during rometer of the Balkans. In whichever counthe Cold War. Mosul and Diyarbakir, Arbil try you have a crisis in the Balkans; people and Mardin, they were not alienated from are coming to this camp. In late 1980s, each other throughout the centuries. Edirne

42 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

“Turkey has to reintegrate with the neighbouring zones”. Turkey should not be alienated from the neighbouring zones. This is the destiny of this country. We cannot have permanent enemies.”

and Skopje or Salonika was not alienated from each other. 19th century, do not go to the 16th century, the natural link was from Salonika to Skopje to Belgrade in the SouthNorth direction in economic sense; or from Salonika to Edirne to Istanbul from West to the East, there was a natural border. Suddenly, all these cities were alienated from each other. There were loss of links between Salonika and Skopje or between Salonika and Edirne. Edirne was the capital city of Ottomans and was one of the most dynamic cities; today Edirne is a small town, why, because it has lost its hinterland, [now is] deadlock of Turkey. I mean no way out, especially, during Cold War because there was Bulgaria behind. These geopolitical continuities did emerge, historical responsibilities did emerge. It is not a question of shifting of access orbits; it is a question of geography and history. … iii. Pro-Active Diplomacy Now, what is the consequence of this? When I say pro-active peace diplomacy, I mean that we cannot wait as Turkey; we cannot wait until a crisis emerged in …[the] regions around us. We have to prevent cri-

Now, what do we have in our hand? ... If we have this global order and regional aspects

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Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

sis before they emerge. We cannot wait until the war approaches to us. We have to prevent the war and tensions and this is a natural concept of a new regional order, let me say. Just to summarize how we should response, just one another dimension. So Turkey was seen as the centre of traditional geopolitical order, was never colonized during Colonial Order and during Cold War. Turkey was seen a wing country of NATO, not central country. Now, the meaning of geography is changing. When, I am sure you discussed many things about Strategic Depth, when I wrote the book I [suggested] that you cannot change history and geography, these are given to you. It is my history … or my geography I cannot change it. I cannot say “Turkey is in a problematic geography; let’s take Turkey to Latin America or somewhere else”. You cannot say it, this is your challenge but you can reinterpret your geography and your history. You must reinterpret your geography and history when international context is changing. International context has changed when I wrote the book “the strategic depth”. I tried wrongly or correctly, you may criticise, what I tried to do was to reinterpret geography and history within this new international context. How was this interpretation, my assumption was this, “Turkey has to reintegrate with the neighbouring zones”. Turkey should not be alienated from the neighbouring zones. This is the destiny of this country. We cannot have permanent enemies. We have to have permanent friends or a new approach of reintegration with the neighbouring zones. We have to have, of course, the objective of full membership to EU, but even for this objective we have to deal with our neighbourhood as well.

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

of this global order, especially in the traditional geopolitical zones… what we try to do…, as Turkey, in order to fulfil this mission.

are from the North but we have to deal with the issues of the South because our economy also carries the characters of southern economy. We have a dynamic population, very competitive market and we have to b. Global Order and the Position of Turkey respond to these challenges. In cultural issues, yes we are part of the western alliFirst of all, today, … the main issue of global ance, we have a strong ambition for EU governance is reformation of United Namembership but at the same time, we have tions [and] Turkey is today a UN Security a strong Eastern background and this is not Council member. Secondly, for international leverage, it is a big asset for us. So, for the global order, we are a member of G20 and future of the global order, if there is a tenTurkish economy is 16th biggest economy sion between East and West, between today. In 2002, Turkey was the 26th bigNorth and South, Turkey is like laboratory… gest economy in the world, today, we are we are representing 16th. Thirdly, if all these and it is a there is a need of “...we want to have a secure big challenge. I am a new approach in neighbourhood based on common happy, in spite of cultural order; understanding of security; in the these difficulties, to therefore we Middle East, in Balkans, in live in Turkey today, started the initiaCaucasia, in Gulf because we to represent Turkey, tive of Alliance of and to deal with all Civilizations. [With belong to all these regions. Turkey these issues bethese]… we are has a multidimensional character cause this creates trying to contribute of geography.” and brings a huge to global order. responsibility. We have a new vision, yes, there must be a much more participatory global governance. Participatory in c. Regional Order and the Position of the sense that the role of G5 should not be Turkey seen like in a hierarchical structure but that should be reinterpreted. Yes, in G20, we will Coming to the regional order, how Turkey is not be there as Turkey only, we have to proresponding to several regional questions. vide new alternatives for economic issues. It We specified four principles to deal with was interesting, last year [in April] we went regional order in theory. Practically, we have to Tanzania with President [Abdullah] Gul. other principle I will refer it. Tanzanian president talked to President Gul, … he said, “in G20, there was no strong Afrii. Securing Neighbourhood can president, and please we expect Turkey to be spokesman of Africa as well, One is; we want to have a secure neighbour[spokesman] of the problems of Africa. Yes, hood based on common understanding of we cannot say, “we are member of NATO, security; in the Middle East, in Balkans, in we are member of OECD, we are from the Caucasia, in Gulf because we belong to all North, there is no need for Turkey to deal these regions. Turkey has a multidimenwith the issues of the South, No”. Yes, we sional character of geography. Turkey is a

44 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

45 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

Balkan country, a Middle Eastern country, a Prof. Davutoglu responded the question on Caucasian country, a Black Sea country, a Turkish-Israel Relations as following: Mediterranean country, a Caspian Sea ... country so we have to deal with [all] these Our relation with Israel was the relation of security environments around. Why are we two nation-states and in Israel there is a so active in Iranian Nuclear programme? … Turkish-Jewish society living there; and it it is not because we are defending Iran, bewas a bridge between Turkey and Israel. But cause we want to have a secure environwhenever Israel applies policies against the ment. We do not want an Iran having a Nuvision which I described, we had really negaclear weapon yes, but we also do not want tive bad relationships. In 2008, I can say, any military tension in our regions… In [last] when they had a vision of peace with Syria; six months, we have Turkey-Bosnia-Serbia we run mediation, I was the mediator betrilateral mechanism; I tween two sides. Perwent to Belgrade five sonally I visited Damas“…Our policy is clear when times, to Sarajevo 6 cus and Tel Aviv more Israel applies a policy times. I met Serbian than 15 times in two minister 12 times years, in a confidential compatible with our policy within 5 months and diplomacy, just to arof peace then there will be Bosnian minister 14 range these indirect no problem between Turkey times. Why? Because talks. But when they and Israel. But if they we do not want a new attacked Gaza, indistension in Bosnia and criminately, against continue to isolate innocent we know very well, as the civilian population people of Gaza, [via] international communiof Gaza, we reacted, creating a ghetto in Gaza, ties [do], if there is a this reaction was cornew Bosnian issue, a ... rect and we will conhot crisis, everybody tinue to do this. We we cannot allow these to [will] turn their face to don’t want any poly or continue.” there. If there is no hot action in our region issue or crisis, there which is against peace [won’t be any] attention…. Bosnia is a backand which will risk the regional stability and bone of Balkan issue and we have to deal security environment. We cannot tolerate with that. As successfully we were able to now what is going on in Gaza. As I said like solve the main issues between Serbia and people of North Afghanistan, people of our th Bosnia and Herzegovina. Last Saturday (24 region –Middle East– have certain expectaApril 2010) we had a summit, Turkeytions from Turkey. Bosnia-Serbia presidents of three countries met in Istanbul. When we started that proc…Our policy is clear when Israel applies a ess, nobody was even imagining that we policy compatible with our policy of peace would achieve this; but we did. Why? Bethen there will be no problem between Turcause; we want to have a secure Balkan, a key and Israel. But if they continue to isolate secure Middle East and a secure Caucasia innocent people of Gaza, [via] creating a around us. ghetto in Gaza, today Gaza is practically a

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

ghetto; we cannot allow these to continue. we will be having joint cabinet meeting durWe will defend the rights of the people of ing this difficult time of Greece because we Gaza everywhere but when there is a think that the destiny of Greece is our deschange in Israel attitude we will be willing to tiny. We do not want a poor neighbour and continue all these diplomatic efforts; indirect we do not want tense neighbour relations. negotiations we can start any times. But it Two days before coming here, I had a meetis up to the Israeli leadership to decide ing with our 10 ministers with whom we will “what they want”. Do they want ‘two-state be going to Athens and the instruction of solution’ or ‘one-state solution’ where PalesPrime Minister was clear and I talked all of tinians and Jewish [people] are living tothem, “please each of you will study what we gether? Or ‘no-state solution’ which is not can do with Greece, which agreements are acceptable to anyone. We cannot afford a favouring”, we want to have full integration Palestine where there is one Jewish state of with Greek economy. If they fail, we will fail. If Israel on one side and we succeed, they will sucthere is no authority, no ceed. We want to have full economic development, energy, transportation, and and no state in the other trade integration. I am not “...the destiny of side. This is not sustainreferring to this crisis, Greece is our able at all. when I say poor I do not destiny. We do not want to insult or anything, want a poor ii. Political Dialog and but I will say the same thing neighbour and we Diplomacy for Armenia and Northern do not want tense Iraq as well. I will come to neighbour Second principle is high that point. relations.” level political dialog. In order to solve these issues, What I want to say is [that] we think that the only inwe are sharing the same strument in our hand is destiny. We want to have political dialog and negotiation, diplomacy full integration with our neighbourhood. So and political dialog. And creatively we develthat high level contact will ease the tension. oped a new structure what we call it as And before this, Mr. Medvedev is coming “high level strategic council meetings” and and we will be having a joint cabinet with we established these mechanisms with Russia. Syria, with Iraq, with Italy, with Spain and this month in May, we will be doing that high Prof. Davutoglu responded the question on level strategic council meetings with Greece Turkish-Greek Relations as following: and Russia, with two so-called enemies for Turkey; Russia during Cold War and Greece About Turkish Greek relations; when I said; before that. We want to change these we have an intention to have a high level imaginations. We do not want any tension. strategic council meeting. We did not have We want to have high level political dialog this intention because there was an ecoand I am happy to inform you now, after two nomic crisis in Greece, no, this is our policy. weeks, 13th of May, Turkish Prime Minister We make this offer to Greece; and now next will be visiting Athens with 10 ministers and week I will be in Ukraine, we will make the

46 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

only through these we can achieve peace, we can have a sustainable regional peace in Aegean Sea. This is not a reaction to Crisis in Greece, please don’t misunderstand me and I don’t want to be misunderstood, this is an issue of vision. I am happy to say … they have the same vision.

“We want Turkish mainland, Anatolia, and Aegean islands not a tense relationship but we want to have energy connection to islands, we want to have trade connections. If possible and Schengen Regime allows we want to have free trade, visafree movement between islands and Anatolia.”

iii. Economic Interdependency

same offer to Ukraine, and to Bulgaria we decided to have. So, with all of our neighbours, we want to have this mechanism. It is not trying to help Greece, …we want to develop economic prosperity together, when I met Mr Papandreou on December in order to organise this high level strategic council, I said “you came to our help when there was an earthquake, now this economic crisis is like an earthquake we have to share everything, whatever we can do. This is not somebody’s helping to another one. This is an issue of common destiny. We don’t see Greece in that sense a country who needs help, no, we want to show our solidarity as well as with a common vision we want to re-establish Turkish Greek relationship based on a new paradigm”. A paradigm which will bring all state institutions together, will make Aegean sea a sea of peace and prosperity. We want Turkish mainland, Anatolia, and Aegean islands not a tense relationship but we want to have energy connection to islands, we want to have trade connections. If possible and Schengen Regime allows we want to have free trade, visa-free movement between islands and Anatolia. Why? Because

Now, do you expect any low level tension between Turkey and Syria? No. If I assume that not these leaders but possible other leaders … want to create problem between Turkey and Syria, [firstly] people [will] rebel against their leaders, I mean people of Antep and people of Aleppo. Because, now they are getting benefit … [from] these good relations. An owner of the restaurant talk to

47 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

Third Principle, we want to have economic interdependency in regional environment. Economic interdependency is the best instrument of peace because if you have economical interdependency then possible tension will harm both societies and therefore they have to react [when] there is a possibility of tension. Therefore, we started to have the policy of visa free regime with our neighbours. We want to have full economic freedom. And there is logic behind this. Please imagine the world map in economic sense; in the west, Germany- France-Italy, put a line; in the north Russia, in the East China and India, all the rest of Euro-Asia and plus Africa the biggest economy is Turkish economy… Because of this dynamic character, we want to have a visa free and free trade regime around us, in order to achieve this we want to have security around us. Therefore, we said our principle, our policy; zero problems with our neighbours; [this policy] and visa liberalisation with our neighbours are compatible.

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

[one of] our ministers (to Egemen Bagis) when he went there. He came and … said “Hocam all Antep people, they like you very much because of this visa [free policy]… one restaurant owner said ‘before three or four Syrian were coming everyday to have lunch or dinner to my restaurant, now everyday around 100 or 150 people are coming and they are making reservation from Aleppo before coming. They are coming, having dinner and going back to Aleppo.’” This is the best way of peace.

… I am sure those who follow Turkish politics in 2007 [would know], all opposition leaders and many people in Turkey were making pressure on government that; “we have to isolate Northern Iraq in the economic sense, close the border, close the Habur Gate”. We resisted, we did not accept. Why because we believed that, the best way of peace is economic interdependency. Today Northern Iraqi economy is integrated to Turkish economy, when I went to Arbil last year as the first Between Turkey and Turkish Minister of Georgia; we are usForeign Affairs ing now Batumi Airvisiting Arbil, the “With Armenia, of course, we port as our domesBazaar of Arbil; want to open border because we tic airport and Turkthey celebrated, want to have full integration with ish citizens are gothey welcomed and our neighbours. But opening ing to Batumi withit was like a Turkish Turkish-Armenian border will not out passport, with city; Turkish advershowing the identity tisements, compabe enough, we have to open card, because, like I nies etc. Now how Armenia-Azeri border as well.” said, of geographical can you close borcontinuity. Artvin ders to them? was in the hinterClosing border land of Batumi not would not bring Rize or Trabzon, people of Artvin, they were peace or security, making borders irreledoing everything with Batumi before. But vant brings you security, like EU case. With during Cold War geopolitics, Batumi and Armenia, of course, we want to open border Artvin were separated, alienated from each because we want to have full integration other. Now we want to restructure this. We with our neighbours. But opening Turkishare implementing full reintegration with our Armenian border will not be enough, we neighbours and we will continue to do this. have to open Armenia-Azeri border as well. Last year, when we went to Baghdad we So that there will be a regional stability. This were criticized that Prime Minister is taking is a vision for the region for Caucasus, for a huge risk because of taking 10 ministers Balkans, or for Middle East. with him to Baghdad when there were several bombardments in [there]. If there was iv. Multi-cultural, Multi-sectarian Coexistence a terrorist attack, half of the cabined would and Harmony be buried in Baghdad but we said “no”. This is the time to have solidarity with Baghdad The forth principle… is multi-cultural, multiwith Iraq. We signed 48 agreements in one sectarian coexistence and harmony. None meeting... of these cities of countries in history were

48 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

Now, how can we manage these things? The only [way to manage] is; we have to keep cities. Cities are important than countries. We have to keep cities multi-cultural. When I went to Iraq in October (probably 2009), first I went to Basra, … then Mosul. In all these… cities, I gave the same message: “We don’t want to have pure Shiite Basra, Sunni should continue to stay in Basra. We don’t want to have a pure Sunni Mosul, a pure Kurdish Arbil. [If so] then many things will be lost”. Throughout the centuries these cities were mixed. In the Middle East, in Balkans and Caucasus no city is uniform; historically they have been multicutural. But now, because of these ethnic or sectarian tensions [some] want to have a pure Shiite Basra, some want to have pure Sunni Mosul, [and] some want to have pure Kurdish Arbil. This will be the end of everything in our region. Or some want to have pure Bosniak Travnic pure Croat Mostar, [so the] Serbian[s]… This will be the end of everything. We have to let hem to [get] mix[ed] again instead of purification of them. If we have mixed cities then countries can survive. Therefore we want to have a peaceful environment.

“Cities are important than countries. We have to keep cities multi-cultural.”

British and Russian etc. Secondly all these three countries are on transaction roots of economic trade route, silk route …. and now energy. But the third is more important. All these three countries are new models of the respective region. Yugoslavia was a small Balkans; all ethnicities and all sects of Balkans were present in Yugoslavia. Iraq is and was a mini model of Middle East; Arabs, Kurds, Turkoman, Christians, Sunnis, Shiites, Yazidis. Do you know, for example,… around two hundreds of thousand Sebeks are living around [Northern Iraq], they are mixed Kurdish-Turkish group; some are Alevi and some are Sunni. But they have a cultural entity. Similarly in Afghanistan; Tajiks, Pashtuns, Uzbeks, Turkoman, Sunnis, and Shiites [are exist in a cultural entity].

Prof. Davutoglu responded the question on the purification policies of Israeli state on Jerusalem as following: … The same principle is varied for this [Palestinian-Israeli] issue. We are completely against … purification, in the sense in Palestine for example. … There are certain ideas when they refer to Jewish state of Israel, to make Israel pure Jewish state. I think this, from this perspective, is not compatible with our vision. We want to have Jerusalem as the historic Jerusalem where

49 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

uniformed. All of them were mixed and multi cultural. Let me give an example of Iraq, Yugoslavia and Afghanistan. Why these three states failed after the Cold War? Why not Romania but Yugoslavia, why not Syria but Iraq? Why not Pakistan but Afghanistan? In one article I said: “Because of three common characteristics; one common characteristic is; all these three states have been the buffer zone states throughout the history. Yugoslavia region between East and the West Roman Empires; Iraq between Sasanian and Byzantine and between Ottomans and Safavids; Afghanistan between

Turkish Vision of Regional and Global Order

KEYNOTE LECTURE | By HE Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu

all religions, all ethnicities are living in peace like the concept of peace in the name of Jerusalem. If we have pure Jewish West Jerusalem and an invaded East Jerusalem there cannot be peace in Jerusalem. And if there won’t be peace in Jerusalem there cannot be peace in the region. Therefore what we need is a new vision, where Jewish and Muslim communities are living together and knowing each other; rather than separating each other, rather than creating a pure Jewish part and excluding even 20 percent Arab community from these Jewish lands. Or pure Palestinian land which is divided by a wall. This is against the history of our region. We have to find ways how to reintegrate them.

“Turkey wants to Reintegrate with all these neighbouring zones and looking to these neighbouring regions from a perspective based on common security, economic interdependency, multi-cultural coexistence and political dialogue. [She] wants to have zero problems with all neighbours.” security to our own nation only through expanding democratic values and expanding the zone of freedom. Therefore we have to reform our political system. And we will be opening to new global issues in the UN Security Council; [in there] we will be very active. We will be supporting the idea of transforming G20 into a new structure. We will be continuing to be very active in Iran’s socialisation … in the future. So, none of our foreign policy objectives is reactive. We are not trying to respond crisis. But our foreign policy is visionary; a vision based on human rights, historical continuity, geographical continuity, peace and stability, and economic interdependence. This visionary approach, we hope that, contribute [to] the surrounding regions and [to] the global peace.

3. Conclusion Just to conclude [with] some important points. Today we are facing a comprehensive issue of global order and this crisis of global order is reflected to several regional instabilities. Turkey, as a country in the centre of Africa and Eurasia, is facing all these challenges because of natural continuity in geographical and historical sense. Turkey wants to reintegrate with all these neighbouring zones and looking to these neighbouring regions from a perspective based on common security, economic interdependency, multi-cultural coexistence and political dialogue. [She] wants to have zero problems with all neighbours.

Thank you. Note: * CESRAN is grateful to publish this keynote lecture which has been edited by Husrev Tabak. We would like to thank Husrev Tabak for his efforts to prepare the Preface and edit the entire transcription.

And with this logic which is compatible with the European Union philosophy, we want to integrate to EU, we want to bring EU a peaceful neighbourhood. And through EU, we want to re-establish security and freedom in our society, because this is the only way of legitimacy. … We want to provide

Besides, CESRAN is thankful to Rahman Dag and Aksel Ersoy for their eminent contributions to transcribing process.

50 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Paula Sandrin

The Development of a European Union Security Culture: Wishful Thinking or Reality? By Paula Sandrin*

51 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Paula Sandrin

T …A European Union Security Culture...

his article attempts to answer the following questions: Does EU have the potential to construct a security culture, with common views about threat identification and the best means to tackle them? Does the EU already possess a security culture? If so, which are its main features?

I would argue that the EU does have a strategic culture: it has established which the threats to its security are and which means it is to employ to guarantee it, including military means. The fact that the Union does not engage in coercive diplomacy, does not employ military means to defeat an opposed willpower, and does not see conflicts as zero-sum, does not mean that it is not a strategic actor. It means that it is a different strategic actor. In addition, because the US is usually the referent used to analyze the EU security policies, by comparison the EU is frequently found wanting. It is my view that the EU is not lacking a strategic culture: it has one, but it is obviously different from that of the US.

Most of the literature about the EU strategic culture is pessimistic about the prospects for its development (see for example Rynning 2003, Hyde-Price 2004, Matlary 2006 and Tardy 2007). The Union is still reluctant to contemplate the use of force as a policy option and is incapable of commanding military forces aside from those engaged in peacekeeping and conflict resolution. For the EU to be considered a traditional strategic actor, it must have the willingness and the ability to threaten the use of force through coercive diplomacy and the capacity to actually deploy such force.

Furthermore, it is important to stress that the literature just mentioned is mostly concerned with the narrow concept of strategic culture, which is primarily about the use of force. Paralleling the calls in security studies for the broadening and deepening

It is interesting to observe that, although these authors recognize that the EU has published a European Security Strategy (ESS), which identify threats and responses, developed a Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), and within that a European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP), which includes a military capability that has been deployed (i.e. the EU does use force) they do not consider that the EU has a strategic culture, with common views regarding the use of force. Because the use of force by the EU is so limited (in terms of number of personnel deployed, the necessity of approval by International Law, the kind of operations, such as Peace Support Operations, it is involved), they conclude that the EU does not have a strategic culture.

52 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Paula Sandrin

the concept of security, Krause (1999) suggested the introduction of the concept of security culture, which builds upon the work on strategic culture but moves it away from its emphasis on military affairs and the use of force. Security culture refers to all the means available to achieve security, including, but not restricted to, the use of force. With this perspective in mind, it is possible to argue that the EU has developed a security culture, albeit it is constantly evolving as the EU also is.

“The EU conceives itself as a zone of peace and prosperity which came about due to a process of integration and interdependence.”

proliferation of WMD, regional instability and failed states are considered threats to the stability and prosperity of the Union. The Union tries to distinguish itself from the US because it employs civilian and military means and support multilateralism in order to handle crisis, and, more importantly, to prevent them (Brok and Gresh 2005). Therefore, in the EU view, a broad range of instruments is required to prevent and to deal with crisis. The EU has now military instruments at its disposal and EU soldiers have been or are being deployed, but the ESS imposes limitations on the use of force: it is only allowed when approved by International Law (Heusgen 2005). The EU also holds a broad conception of security and links security with development. Javier Solana (2002), in a speech in the annual conference of the EU Institute for Security Studies, stated that: “since the beginning of the European project, [Europeans] have developed a specific culture of security, based on conflict prevention, political management of crisis, and taking account of the economic and

The sources of insecurity to the Union are thus those that challenge its stability and prosperity (its identity features) and the Union itself (which brought about peace and prosperity). Terrorism, organized crime,

53 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

...A European Union Security Culture...

And which are characteristics of the EU security culture? The EU conceives itself as a zone of peace and prosperity which came about due to a process of integration and interdependence. Europe’s unique historical experience (and how it was narrated and propagated) helped shape its strategic behavior. The common historical memories are the destructiveness of the Second World War, a belief in the reconciliation of former enemies and the achievement of peace and prosperity through economic interdependence and cooperative institutional structures (Toje 2005). The EU presents itself as a force capable of bringing stability and prosperity within and without the Union. In other words, the EU formulates and conducts a foreign and security policy that derives from the way itself developed (its own history and identity). The EU foreign policy preference for diplomacy over coercion and the employment of economic solutions to political problems reflect the Union’s own sense of history.

EUROPE REVIEW | By Paula Sandrin


...A European Union Security Culture...

“The EU, conceived as a zone of peace and prosperity brought about by a process of integration and interdependence, behaves in the international system in a way that reflects its identity construction and history.”

* Paula Sandrin is a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Westminster. References: Brok, Elmar and Gresch, Norbert (2005). “Paving the Way to a European Culture of Security”. In: Oxford Journal on Good Governance 2 (1): 17. Heusgen, Christoph (2005) “Is there such a thing as a European Strategic Culture?”. In: Oxford Journal on Good Governance 2 (1): 29. Hyde-Price, Adrian (2004). “European Security, Strategic Culture, and the Use of Force”. In: European Security 13(4): 323. Krause, Keith (1999). “Cross-Cultural Dimension of Multilateral Non-Proliferation and Arms Control Dialogues: An Overview”. In Krause, Keith (ed.). Culture and Security: Multilateralism, Arms Control and Security Building. London: Frank Class. Matlary, Janne Haaland (2006). “When Soft Power Turns Hard: Is an EU Strategic Culture Possible?”. In: Security Dialogue 37: 105. Rynning, Sten (2003). “The European Union: Towards a Strategic Culture?”. In: Security Dialogue (34): 479. Tardy, Thierry (2007). “The European Union: From Conflict Prevention to ‘Preventive Engagement,’ Still a Civilian Power Lacking a Strategic Culture”. In: International Journal 62 (3): 539. Toje, Asle (2005). “Introduction: The EU Strategic Culture”. In: Oxford Journal on Good Governance 2 (1): 11.

social root causes of conflict” (quoted on Tardy 2007, p. 551). Hence, the EU combines long-term strategies addressing the root causes of conflict, such as underdevelopment, inequality and violations of human rights, and a short-term action dealing with the immediate causes of instability. The use of force is one of the many and varied instruments used in conflict prevention and crisis management. Therefore, EU does have a security culture: it has common assumptions on what constitutes insecurities and the best way to tackle them. The EU, conceived as a zone of peace and prosperity brought about by a process of integration and interdependence, behaves in the international system in a way that reflects its identity construction and history. Finally, its main features are a preference to tackle threats to its stability and prosperity through non-coercive civilian means which the EU believes addresses to root causes of conflict.

54 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

The European Union as a Normative Power and the Western Balkans By Dr. Dilek Yigit*

55 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

T The European Union As A Normative Power

he Western Balkan countries have gone through political and economic reform process in which the European Union (EU) plays a major role. The effectiveness of the EU’s role in the region has been increased through the prospect of EU membership, since the clear EU perspective not only enhances the weight of the EU in tackling political and economic challenges in the region but also provides encouragement for political and economic reform in the Western Balkan countries.

Serbia submitted its application for EU membership in December 2009. Bosnia and Herzegovina’s EU perspective was confirmed in Thessaloniki European Council in June 2003, when Bosnia and Herzegovina became a potential candidate country for EU accession. Among the Western Balkan countries, as the Council of the European Union points out “Kosovo constitutes a sui generis case.” United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 established the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) in June 1999, and the status negotiations were started under the auspices of the UN Special Envoy in February 2006. The EU supports Kosovo's economic and political development through underlining that Kosovo has a European perspective.

Croatia applied for EU membership on 21 February 2003, its status as a candidate country was confirmed by the European Council in June 2004. The accession negotiations between the EU and CroaThese developments in tia started in October the relations between the 2005, and as of 20 EU and the Western BalApril 2010 the negotiakan countries address the tions have been opened fact that their future lies in provisionally on 30 out of the EU. In the light of this 35 chapters and provisionfact, the question of how the Croatia’s Coat of Arms ally closed on 18 chapters. European Union has succeeded The Council is supposed to set in increasing its weight in tackling up the ad-hoc technical working political and economic challenges in the group for the Accession Treaty with Croatia, region requires a satisfactory answer. and Croatia’s accession negotiations with the EU may be concluded within a few years. The The answer to this question should build on Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia apthe conception of the EU as a civilian power plied for EU membership on 22 March 2004, suggested by Duchene in the early 1970s the Council invited the Commission to submit and on six factors shaping norm diffusion in its opinion on the application on 17 May international relations suggested by Manners. 2004, and the European Council granted After Duchene introduced the conception of candidate status on 16 December 2005. the European Union as a “civilian power”, Montenegro applied for EU membership on much attention was paid to the question of 15 December 2008 and the Council rewhy the EU is a civilian/normative power quested the Commission to prepare an opinrather than whether or not it is a civilian/ ion on the application on 23 April 2009. Albanormative power, for it is indeed impossible to nia applied for EU membership in April 2009, conceive the EU’s international role without

56 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

referring to its economic and political means. Although the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the European Security and Defence Policy are regarded by some scholars as the militarisation of the EU risking its normative power, the concept of normative power is still the main starting point in analysis of the EU’s foreign policy, and, as Sjursen points out “the conception of the EU as a normative/civilizing power has provided a fruitful avenue for research...”

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The European Union As A Normative Power

states’ embassies, contributes to the diffusion of EU norms. The example of overt diffusion is seen in the EU’s relations with the Western Balkan countries. The EU has the EC Delegations in Zagreb, Tiran, Sarajevo, Podgorica, Belgrade, Skopje and the Liaison Office in Kosovo. The EC Delegations in the Western Balkan countries have focused on the political, economic and trade relations and monitoring the Western Balkan countries’ progress towards EU membership. And, the EU has sent EU Special RepresenIf the EU is conceptualised as a normative tative (EUSR) to Bosnia and Herzegovina so power, the relationship as to monitor Bosnia and between the EU and the Herzegovina’s transition to ...“the conception Western Balkan counpeaceful and viable democtries should be an examracy. of the EU as a ple of demonstrating the normative/ way in which the EU as a Manners defines normative power diffuse “informational diffusion” as civilizing power its norms through the “the result of the range of has provided a factors suggested by strategic communications, Manners. such as new policy initiative fruitful avenue for by the EU, and declaratory research...” In a general sense, a norcommunications, such as mative/civilian power can initiatives from the presibe defined as a power dency of the EU or the promoting its norms through using civilian president of the Commission”. In this context, instruments. At this point, the question of how the Progress Reports and Enlargement the EU promote or diffuse its norms should Strategies which assessing the progress be answered. To answer this question, what is made by the Western Balkan countries as needed is to understand six factors from candidates, and the Presidency Conclusions which the EU’s normative power stems- “overt including statements on the region, can be diffusion”, “informational diffusion”, regarded as the examples of informational “contagion”, “transference”, “procedural diffudiffusion in the region. For example, in the sion” and “the cultural filter.”Manners states Presidency Conclusions December 2006, it that “What has been significant in these norm is stated that the future of the West Balkans diffusion factors was the relative absence of lies in the European Union. As regards new physical force in the imposition of norms.” policy initiatives, achieving visa-free travel can be regarded as an example of new initiatives launched by the EU. In 2008 the Commission Manners defines “overt diffusion” as “a represented a road map for visa liberalisation sult of the presence of the EU in third counwith Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina. In July tries and international organizations”. The 2009, a visa-free regime was proposed by physical presence of the EU, as the delegathe Commission for the Former Yugoslav tions of the Commission and the member

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

The European Union As A Normative Power

Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. In November 2009 the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia were granted visa free travel to the Schengen area as of 19 December 2009 by the decision of the Council. Another factor shaping norm diffusion is “contagion”, which refers that the EU has become an example of regional integration through “exporting its experiment in regional integration” This factor can not be easily applicable to the Western Balkans, since the Western Balkan countries have given main priority to EU accession rather than regional cooperation initiatives. There are three main regional initiatives in the region; Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA), the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), and the Regional School for Public Administration (ReSPA). The parties of CEFTA are Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Moldova, Serbia, Montenegro and Kosovo, and the aim of this agreement is to establish a free trade zone in the region. The EU regards CEFTA as a process complementing the Stabilisation and Association Process. The RCC launched in February 2008 aims to maintain close relations among countries in the region especially in six areas; economic and social development, energy and infrastructure, justice and home affairs, security cooperation, building human capital, and parliamentary cooperation. ReSPA aims to strengthen regional cooperation in the field of public administration and help the participating countries to meet membership criteria. The EU supports the regional cooperation in the region through providing technical and financial assistance; nonetheless progress in regional cooperation is not satisfactory. The European Commission indicated in 2009 that “Disagreements relating to the Participation of Kosovo in regional meetings, initiatives and agreements are becoming an obstacle to regional cooperation. The normal functioning

Western Balkans

of important structures such as the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA), the Regional Cooperation Council (RCC), or the Regional School for Public Administration (ReSPA) could be jeopardised, if present practices do not change.” As regards “transference”, Manners defines it as “a diffusion takes place when the EU exchange goods, trade, aid or technical assistance with third parties through largely substantive or financial means.” Examples of transference diffusion also can be seen in the EU’s relations with the Western Balkan countries. The EU signed Stabilisation and Association Agreements (SAA) with Croatia, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia in the last decade, these agreements are parts of Stabilisation and Association Process, which aims to establish contractual relationship between the EU and the Western Balkan countries, increase trade between partners, and ensure peace and stability in the region. As a result of ratification of SAAs or Interim Agreements on trade and trade-related matters, the EU countries have become main trading partners of the Western Balkan countries. In 2000, The EU created the “exceptional unlimited duty-free access to the EU market” for certain goods originating in the

58 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

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The European Union As A Normative Power

region. In 2008, EU’s good exports to the enlargement of the EU itself.” Moreover, “The Balkans were increased to 32,5 billion Euro cultural filter is based on the interplay beand good imports from the region amounted tween the construction of knowledge and the to 13,9 billion Euro. Since the current prefercreation of social and political identity by the ential regime is due expire in the end of subjects of diffusion.” As it is seen, Manners 2010, on 22 February 2010 the Commission states that the EU’s enlargement policy is an proposed to prolong the preferential regime example of procedural diffusion, but the EU’s until 31 December 2015. The Western Balenlargement is also an example of the culkan countries have been receiving EU financial tural filter, for the EU promotes its democaid under the Instrument for Pre-accession ratic norms through its enlargement policy. In Assistance (IPA) since 2007. The Commisthe article 49 of the Treaty on the European sion pointed out that “IPA streamlines all preUnion, it is stated that “any European state accession assistance within a single framewhich respects the principles of liberty, dework. It places more focus on ownership of mocracy, human rights and fundamental freeimplementation by the beneficiary countries, doms, and the rule of law may apply to join the on support for cross-border cooperation, and Union.” At the Copenhagen summit in 1993, on “learning by doing”. the basic conditions for It prepares candidate membership were laid “any European state which countries to implement down. These criteria respects the principles of the regional, social, are; liberty, democracy, human rural development and Stable institutions rights and fundamental cohesion funds upon guaranteeing democfreedoms, and the rule of law accession.” Under the racy, the rule of law, current (2007-2013) human rights and remay apply to join the Union.” financial framework, spect for and protecthe total pre-accession tion of minorities, funding is 11.5 billion A functioning market economy and the Euro. In 2008 146 million Euro for Croatia, capacity to cope with competitive pressure 70.2 million Euro for the Former Yugoslav and market forces within the Union Republic of Macedonia, 70.7 million Euro for The ability to take on the obligations of Albania, 74.8 million Euro for Bosniamembership, including support fort he aims Herzegovina, 184.7 million Euro for Kosovo of the Union. They must have a public adwere allocated, in 2009 33.3 million Euro for ministration capable of applying and managMontenegro and 194.8 million Euro for Sering EU laws in practice. bia were allocated. The European Union is the largest donor to the region. The Western Balkan countries as candidates for EU membership have to meet this The fifth and sixth factors from which Euroset of membership criteria to accede the pean normative power stems are “the culUnion. To what extent the candidates meet tural filter” and “procedural diffusion.” Manthe membership criteria is assessed in the ners points out that “Procedural diffusion Progress Reports published by the Commisinvolves the institutionalisation of relationship sion each autumn. If the candidate country between the EU and a third party, such as fails to meet the membership criteria, the inter-regional cooperation agreement, memaccession process is halted or slow down. bership of an international organization or As the Commission acknowledges in its

EUROPE REVIEW | By Dr. Dilek Yigit

The European Union As A Normative Power

Communication in 2009 that “Progress with reforms in the enlargement countries has allowed them to move through successive stages in the accession process.” That is why, the EU’s enlargement policy leads the diffusion of political and economic norms of the Union in the Western Balkans through enabling not only the Union to induce reforms in these countries, but also the Western Balkan countries’ governments to provide justification for political and economic reform.

6) OHR Office of the High Representative-OHR Introduction,, accessed on 01.04.2010. 7) Manners, Ian, (2002), p. 244. 8) Council of the European Union, Visa Liberalisation for Western Balkan Countries, Brussels, 16640/09 (Presse 349), Brussels, 30 November 2009. 9) Manners, Ian, (2002), p. 244. 10) European Commission: Trade:Balkans (Bilateral relations, creating-opportunities/bilateralrelations/ regions/balkans, accessed on 26.04.2010. 11), accessed on 19.04.2010. 12), accessed on 19.04.2010. 13) Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, COM (2009) 533, 14.10.2009. 14) Manners, Ian, 2002, p.245. 15) Stabilisation and Association Process,, accessed on 19.04.2010. 16) European Commission Directorate-General for Trade, Press release-the Balkans, Brussels, 22 February 2010,, accessed on 26.04.2010. 17) European Commission: Trade:Balkans (Bilateral relations, creating-opportunities/bilateralrelations/ regions/balkans, accessed on 26.04.2010. 18) Ibid. 19) Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, COM (2008) 127 final, 5.3.2008. 20) Instrument for pre-accession assistance (IPA),, accessed on 19.04.2010. 21) candidatecountries, accessed on 19.04.2010. 22) Manners, Ian, 2002, p.244. 23) Enlargement: Uniting a continent, http:// e u r o pa. e u / po l / e n l ar g , ac ce s se d o n 20.04.2010. 24) Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament and the Council, COM (2009) 533, 14.10.2009.

Building on the concept of the normative power and the factors shaping EU norm diffusion, we see that the EU has been increasing its weight in the Western Balkans as a normative actor through civilian instruments. The major policy instrument of the EU to promote EU norms effectively in the Western Balkans is its enlargement policy, for what enables the Western Balkan countries to be committed to the economic and political reform is the prospect of EU membership.

Note: * Dilek Yigit is a Chief of Division at Undersecretariat of Treasury, Turkey Email: [email protected] References: 1) Kosova under UN Security Council Resolution 1244/99-profile; Political relations with EU, potentialcountries/kosova/relation, accessed on 07.04.2010. 2) Ibid. 3) Sjursen, Helene, (2006), “What kind of power?”. Journal of European Public Policy, Vol. 13, No.2, p.170. 4) Manners, Ian, (2002) “ Normative Power Europe: A Contradiction in Terms?”, Journal of Common Market Studies, Vol. 40, No.2, pp. 244245. 5) Manners, Ian, (2006), “Normative Power Europe reconsidered: Beyond the Crossroads”, Journal of European Public Policy, Vol. 13, No: 2, p. 184.

60 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010



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EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability in Western Balkans Through EU Membership and Kosovo Issue By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem*

62 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem


The Stabilisation and Association Agreement’s aim, which is signed between the EU and Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia is to support these countries’ economic transition and to strengthen their integration into the EU Single Market. The Agreement covers reforms from political dialogue to freedoms in the movement of goods, services, workers and capital and requires trade liberalization. Also regional cooperation is another emphasized area. However, the experience shows that the countries in the region are facing a number of problems with their EU accession process, some of which are related to their recent history with the disintegration of former Yugoslavia. Therefore, the objective of this article is to identify the main challenges with the EU membership process of these Western Balkans countries and as the review will show unless there is a resolution with the Kosovo issue in the near future, the hopes for security and stability through EU membership will need to wait for a long time. However, before that it is important to do a quick stocktaking of Western Balkan countries EU membership processes.

Candidate countries need to fulfil the Copenhagen criteria which are a range of economic and political conditions in order to join the EU which provides financial assistance for improving infrastructure and economic and political systems to candidate countries. The Stabilisation and Association Process (SAP) is the EU’s policy for Western Balkans. On November 2000, at the Zagreb Summit, the SAP is launced for Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Croatia and ALBANIA Macedonia, which are candidate countries, remain part of this process. A year after, the The formal bilateral relationships between Albania and the EU was initiated with the Community Assistance for Reconstruction Trade and Co-operation Development and Stabili“Albania, Agreement which was sation (CARDS) proBosniasigned in 1992. With this gramme is specifically Agreement, Albania beHerzegovina, designed for SAP councame eligible for funding Montenegro, Serbia tries. The new Instruunder the EU’s Phare proand Kosovo ... in ment for Pre-Accession gramme. In 1999, the the Western Assistance (IPA) renew Stabilisation and AsBalkans region are places the CARDS and sociation Agreement considered covers candidate and Process (SAP) was propotential candidate potential candidate posed to five Southcountries.” countries. Eastern Europe countries,

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Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

n 1 May 2004, the European Union (EU) undertook its biggest enlargement with ten new Member States. Two more Member States, Bulgaria and Romania followed this expansion on 1 January 2007. Currently, Turkey, Croatia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia are candidate countries and the negotiation process was opened with Turkey and Croatia on 3 October 2005. Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia and Kosovo (under UN Security Council Resolution 1244) in the Western Balkans region are considered potential candidate countries.

Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

including Albania. At the Feira European Council in June 2000, the SAP countries (Albania, BosniaHerzegovina, Croatia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia, including Kosovo as defined by resolution 1244 of the UN Security Council) were announced as potential candidates for EU membership. At Thessaloniki European Council in June 2003, the SAP was confirmed as the EU policy for the Western Balkans and finally, on 28 April 2009, Albania, submitted its application for EU membership. BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA The history of institutional relationships between Bosnia-Herzegovina and the EU started by the establishment of political and economic conditionality for the development of bilateral relations in 1997. In 1998, the EU-Bosnia and Herzegovina Consultative Task Force was established and after the Thessaloniki European Council, the negotiations for Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) were officially opened in Sarajevo on 25 November 2005 and on 16 June 2008, SAA was signed. It will enter into force once its ratification process has been completed.

Stabilisation and Association Agreement (SAA) with Montenegro. On 15 October 2007, the SAA was signed in Luxembourg and Montenegro submitted its application for EU membership on 15 December 2008.

MONTENEGRO After the Thessaloniki European Council, the Enhanced Permanent Dialogue between the EU and the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro was launced in July 2003. According to the referendum on independence on 21 May 2006, a majority of Montenegrin opted for the independence of Montenegro. The EU Council declared Montenegro as a sovereign, independent state on 12 June 2006 and adopted a negotiating mandate for a

KOSOVO After the new Stabilisation and Association Process (SAP) was proposed by the EU, the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 established the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) in June 1999. On 17 February 2008, the Kosovo Assembly adopted a resolution which

64 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

third level, there are UNMIK and those EU institutions – International Civilian Office (ICO) and European Union Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo (EULEX) which have the same authority as UNMIK. At the bottom of this sovereignty hierarchy, there is Kosovo Government, and Belgrad Government acting as protective force of Kosovo Serbians.

declared Kosovo as an independent state. The European Council recalled the EU’s “willingness to assist the economic and political development of Kosovo through a clear European Perspective, in line with the European Perspective of the region” on 19-20 June 2008.

SERBIA After breaking up of Yugoslavia, ethnic tensions which were provoked by nationalist political leaders turned into wars and ethnic cleansing tactics in the Balkans. The conflicts continued successively as Serbians against Croatians (1991-1995), Serbians against Bosnian and Croatians (1992-1995) and Serbians against Kosovans (1998-1999). However, having been tested by the international community and accessed to some diplomatic and military sources in recent

In order to establish all ‘decision makers’ in Kosovo requires a substantial endeavour. Kosovo Force (KFOR) that deployed the biggest military base in Europe - Camp Bondsteel seems to stands at the top of the hierarchy. Then there are the institutions which are under the control of KFOR, while at the

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Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

Kosovo considers the full membership to the EU as an absolute priority and hopes to reach to this aim in 2015, and with the aim of accomplishing its commitments for the international community, Kosovo will need to concentrate on the integration of minorities, institutional stability and parliamentary administration. However, it should be noted that the full member states, Spain, Greece, Cyprus, Slovakia and Romania do not recognize Kosovo as an independent country and therefore, how the EU can start stabilisation and association process with a state that is not recognized by all of its 27 member states and deal with the Stabilisation and Association Agreement? On the other hand, it should not be forgotten that all of 27 member states are deployed as EULEX in spite of the fact that five states do not recognize Kosovo.

years, Serbia, the “heart” of Old Yugoslavia, now does all it can for a EU membership. After the Stabilisation and Association Process (SAP) was confirmed as the EU policy for the Western Balkans, including Serbia, the Process’ Agreement Boris Tadic negotiations called off due to lack of progress on Serbia’s c o operation with the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) on 3 May 2006. After the clear commitment of Serbia to achieve full cooperation with the ICTY, the SAA was signed in on 29 April 2008 and Serbia submitted its application for EU membership on 22 December 2009.

brought by the membership of a divided Cyprus in 2004. Consequently it has not given a green light to the Serbian membership unless there is a peaceful resolution between Serbia and Kosovo. Dr. Fatmir Sejdiu

These days, Serbia and Kosovo have carried the conflict to a diplomatic level, as Serbia disaffirmed Kosovo’s declaration of independence by applying to the International Court of Justice (ICJ). Both sides hope that the ICJ’s decision will in a way determine the Kosovo’s final status with statehood. This new ‘diplomatic’ period issue between Serbia and Kosovo has already had a number of serious ramifications. Serbia has recently recalled its Ambassador to Montenegro upon request of the latter’s desire of diplomatic relations with Kosovo. Also, President of Serbia, Mr. Tadic boycotted Croatia’s new President Ivo Josipovic’s oath-taking on the grounds of Kosovo’s President Mr. Fatmir Sejdiu’s appearance at the same ceremony. Additionally Serbia refuses negotiations with Kosovo and insists on UNMIK representation to the old Serbian province.

President of the Republic of Serbia

President of the Republic of Kosovo

Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence in February 2008, political instability in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Croatian genocide claim against Serbians, the failure with the arrest of General Mladic and borders problems with former Yugoslavian countries affected the Serbia’s EU membership aspirations negatively. Spain’s Presidency has begun on 1 January 2010 and Spain is one of the five countries who have not recognized Kosovo’s independence. Spain feels anxiety that this can encourage its own separatists in Pais Vasco and Catalan regions. Overall, the relations between Serbia and her southern neighbour and old province Kosovo has all the characteristics of a test in the way of Serbia’s EU membership. The EU does not want to face with a similar problem that was

On the other hand, after the bloody conflict of 1990s, there has been a recovery of relations is between Serbia and Croatia in recent times. With the election of the social democrat Ivo Josipović as President in Croatia has created opportunities for the resolutions of genocide claims in a more political and diplo-

66 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

matic way. For example, the Serbian government promised the broadcasting of a declaration, condemning the events in Srebrenica which was resulted over 8.000 slaughtered Bosniacs. Moreover, Croatia which is planning to accomplish its EU accession process soon, declared that it will help other Balkan countries in harmonizing national laws to the EU legislations. Serbia’s relation with Bosnia and Herzegovina is also carrying a special meaning. The tensions between ethnic Serbs and the international community in the country increased in recent years. With the Dayton Agreement signed in 1995 Bosnia and Herzegovina is under the protection of the international community through the Office of High Representative, and the possible disintegration of the country can easily create a domino effect in the entire region.

“After the horrific experiences of armed conflicts in the Western Balkans in the 1990s, the most urgent priority remains to be the maintenance peace and stability.”

As good neighbourly relationships are a key element towards EU membership, the bilateral issues have to be resolved with mutually acceptable solutions. By the support of Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA), the governments with the civil society can find the way of utilising for the region’s modernisation and development in most areas. To achieve it, every Western Balkan country should set out its priorities and then the EU should assist them in reform and reconciliation. For example, Croatia should address the Ecological and Fisheries Protection Zone in line with the European Council conclusions without any delay, if it would not like to see any problems during the Accession Negotiations. With this endeavour, Croatia can also send a good signal to other Western Balkan countries about fulfilling the necessary conditions. Montenegro should begin to implement her constitution which is in line with European standards. As administrative reform and capacity are a key element

CONCLUSION After the horrific experiences of armed conflicts in the Western Balkans in the 1990s, the most urgent priority remains to be the maintenance peace and stability. Although the countries of the region have moved closer to the EU over the past two years, their security, stability and well-being are still challenging issues. The focussed attention is the status of Kosovo and this needs to be resolved in order to progress with the membership process of not only Kosovo itself but also Serbia. The EU perspective can be the best equilibrium key for his issue. The populations of these countries experienced all means of vandalism and racialism in the region are understandably highly favourable to an EU integration. The governments like the public opinion, should commit themselves to support for strengthening the rule of law, good governance, judicial and administrative reform and the development of civil society.

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Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

For supporting this intention, the EU should continue initiatives to make more visible and concrete membership prospects.

EUROPE REVIEW | By Assist. Prof. Fusun Ozerdem

Enhancing Peace, Security and Stability

particular lenges.


Overall, the implementation of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement is very important for Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. Especially for Serbia, full cooperation with the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia is essential take important steps on the way of full membership. Kosovo has a clear and concrete EU perspective and therefore the EU should use available instruments. Mr Stefan Füle, the EU Commissioner for Enlargement visited Kosovo after Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina in March 2010, which was an important signal for all Western Balkans and other European countries. Fulfilling all necessary conditions would likely to bring concrete benefits for all regional countries, as it is imperative to remember that the future of the Western Balkans lies in the EU. However, unless there is a sustainable solution with the future of Kosovo, the plans for peace, security and stability through EU membership in the Western Balkans are likely to remain a futile exercise. The way the countries of Western Balkans are very closely linked with each other in terms of their history, demographics and sociocultural structures, a regional approach to the problem is clearly imperative, however, Kosovo continues to be the key issue in this bigger picture.

Mr. Stefan Füle for Montenegro, efforts to fight corruption and organised crime should be continued and supported. Bosnia and Herzegovina should meet the capable of functional and effective institutions; also continue the cooperation with ICTY. With Albania’s balanced position on the Kosovo issue, it should contribute to the regional stability positively. Considering that there are close historical and socio-cultural links between Albania and Kosovo, the former could in fact, play a more active role in the resolution of Kosovo issue. With its own EU membership aspirations, Albania has strong incentives to encourage Kosovo in finding a common ground with Serbia when it comes to a number of controversial issues such as the future of Serb minority and Christian Orthodox cultural heritage in Kosovo. However, it is also important that Albania’s political leaders should endeavour for strengthening the rule of law in their country and make fight against corruption and organised crime a primary objective. This is particularly important after the EU’s undesirable experience with the membership of Romania and Bulgaria in relation to these

Note: * Fusun Ozerdem is an Assist. Prof. in Department of International Relations at Trakya University.

68 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010


EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

In the Deep Freeze? A Cold War Legacy and the Visa-Free Programme Between Russia and Japan By Paul Richardson*


EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

The visa-free Programme between Russia and Japan


he Southern Kurils are three islands (Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan) and a cluster of rocky islets that lie off the north-east coast of Hokkaido. The Japanese collectively refer to them as the Northern Territories. Until the end of the Second World War the entire Kuril chain as far as Kamchatka belonged to Japan however in August and September 1945 the Soviet military swept down the chain, imprisoning the Japanese soldiers and a few years later repatriating all the Japanese civilian residents. Today, the Japanese government claims the Southern Kurils (Northern Territories) but they remain de facto part of the Russian Federation, falling under the administrative jurisdiction of Sakhalin region. As both sides tirelessly assert their rights to the islands according to geography, first-discovery, development, and international law, the dispute remains as far away as ever from being solved. This unresolved territorial dispute has so far prevented both sides signing a post-war peace treaty.

the local residents. Japanese humanitarian assistance also became an important part of the visa-free programme, particularly after an earthquake and tsunami devastated the islands’ infrastructure in 1994. The official aim of the exchange programme is to promote mutual understanding and friendship between the Russian and Japanese participants, and reflecting on its successes in 2005 the then Sakhalin Governor, Ivan Malakhov, explained that it had permitted an ‘increasing number of citizens of both countries to meet with the habits,

“Until the end of the Second World War the entire Kuril chain as far as Kamchatka belonged to Japan however in August and September 1945 the Soviet Union swept down the chain...”

Most Russian visitors to Japan, and Japanese visitors to Russia, require a visa. However, for the Russian residents and former Japanese residents of these wind-swept, fog-bound and disputed islands there exists an unusual visa-free regime over them. Almost nine thousand Japanese have visited the Southern Kuril Islands, and some seven thousand Russians who live there have travelled to Japan on the visa-free exchange programme existing between the two countries since 1992(1). For the Japanese, the process of regularly visiting and tending ancestral graves on the islands became possible and the Japanese guests were also invited into Russian homes and were able to introduce Japanese culture to

culture and way of life of their neighbours and in this way further the development of friendship and good neighbourly relations'(2). Many Kuril islanders participating in the exchange also relish the chance to visit Japan and stock up on consumer goods and food products which are usually cheaper and more available than on the islands themselves. The visa-free exchange programme has contributed to a breakdown of outdated stereotypes and increased mutual understanding amongst its participants, who now ‘invite each other into their homes as friends, not enemies - a remarkable achievement when a few years

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EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

earlier this was one of the front lines of the Cold War(3).

(6). For his part, Ponomarev sees only the darkest geopolitical motivations behind the visa-free programme. He fulminates against what he sees as the inherently political aspects of Japanese visa-free visits to the islands, which he believes are:

Directed at fixing the dependency of the citizens of the Kurils on Japan, continuing economic stagnation on the islands and neutralising the patriotic feelings of the population, thus creating an atmosphere of uncertainly for the future and, ultimately, the seizure of the Islands from Russia and the destruction of its territorial integrity(7).” Such patriotic rhetoric again bubbled to the surface in July 2009 after Japan’s parliament passed amendments to a bill on the ‘Northern Territories’ which named the Southern Kurils ‘the historical territory of Japan’(8). The response in Moscow was swift with the Russian parliament declaring that the peace treaty talks with Japan were now ‘pointless’ unless Tokyo cancelled the legislation(9). A resolution was approved in the Federal Council (the upper house of the Russian parliament) denouncing the Japanese declaration as ‘a deeply unfriendly

On the Russian side, the chairman of the Sakhalin commission for managing the visafree travel of Russian and Japanese citizens is Sergei Ponomarev - a deputy in the Sakhalin Regional Parliament and coordinator of the parliamentary faction ‘For the Russian Kurils!’ (a group against any kind of territorial compromise with Japan)


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The visa-free Programme between Russia and Japan

The Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Russia and Japan agreed that visa-free visits would take place under the premise of not harming the legal positions of either Japan or Russia in regard to the disputed islands (4). However, too often the programme has been manipulated for political ends. The governors of Hokkaido (including the current governor, Harumi Takahashi) have visited the disputed islands in visa-free groups, the Japanese participants attend workshops and seminars detailing the procedures of the visit as well as reminding them of the Japanese government’s claim on the islands which include warnings about not saying anything that might undermine this, and also the committee in charge of managing the exchange programme on Hokkaido includes the Northern Alliance (Hoppo Domei) - a key group in the Northern Territories Return Movement (5).

EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

The visa-free Programme between Russia and Japan

gesture, which is offensive for the Russian people, who are always friendly towards Japan’(10). The Federal Council at the same time appealed to President Medvedev to consider introducing a moratorium on the visa-free travel between the Southern Kurils and Japan(11).

at a minimum, does not bring closer a mutually acceptable solution to the problem of a peace treaty’(15).

Even with such strong responses to Japanese announcements, there still appears to be a desire in the region to continue the visa-free programme. At the same time as At the local level, the head of the Kuril dissuggesting that Kunashir and Shikotan may trict, Nikolai Razumishkin, told a Japanese suspend visa-free visits, Igor Koval’ somedelegation on July 8 2009 that the island what contradicted himself when he acof Iturup would henceforth suspend visaknowledged that ordinary Russian people free travel, stating that it will not resume living on the islands want the visa-free regu‘until the Japanese government annuls this lations to remain. He explained that Kuril bill’(12). Igor Koval’, chairman Islanders enjoy these travof the South Kuril district els, and he stressed the legislative assembly, also strong contacts in culture, stated that Shikotan and sports, and the conservation “...ordinary Russian Kunashir could similarly stop of nature that have been people living on the the exchanges, stating that established with the Japa‘we hold in very poor regard nese over the duration of islands want the the current Japanese law…it the visa-free programme visa-free regulations cancels everything that was (16). As for the statements to remain.” achieved over the last 17 on suspending visa-free years with the exchange betravel by the federal organs tween our citizens’(13). Nevof power, Koval’ said: ‘We ertheless, the protests of the only implement these decideputies from the Kurils had sions, but we would like the little consequence for the programme and government to pay heed to the opinion of the visa-free travel of Russians and Japathe local population and not to take exnese has continued. Unfortunately, the istreme and radical decisions that could afsue resurfaced again when in May 2010 it fect, first of all, ordinary people’(17). was reported that an association of deputies had again been created in the JapaSimilar local sentiments towards central nese Parliament who intended to intendecision making were revealed when in sively campaign for the resolution of the response to a request from the Russian ‘Northern Territories’ problem. The depuMinistry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) the Japaties urged Japanese citizens to use any nese government agreed to cease providchance to promote ownership over ‘ancient ing humanitarian aid to the Southern Kurils Japanese lands’ in conversations with Rusfrom April 2010. Valentin Smorchkov, head sians(14). This provoked an immediate reof the ‘The Kuril-Japanese Centre’ (the orsponse from Sakhalin, with an official comganisation on the Kuril Islands that manmunication from the governor declaring ages visa-free delegations), declared to the that ‘to politicise the visa-free programme, newspaper Kommersant” that it is ‘with a

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EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

pain in my heart I receive the news about the ceasing of humanitarian assistance’(18). According to Smorchkov, over the last 17 years Japan has rendered to the inhabitants of the islands $23million of help – a large part being the delivery of medical supplies and equipment, and free operations in Japanese hospitals. Smorchkov is convinced that ‘thanks to the humanitarian aid and the visa-free exchange the lives of 98 children have been saved’(19). As Anatolli Svetlov, the head of

Hokkaido the Kuril municipal-district, put it ‘the local authorities take no pleasure in the refusal of aid…[but]…if the MFA have notified the government of Japan, we must accept it’(20). In conclusion, the visa-free programme has been an extraordinary initiative that has seen former Japanese residents return to their place of birth as guests and even friends of their usurpers. Compassion and respect from the Russian side facilitated visits of the former residents to the graves of their ancestors. Similarly, generous humanitarian aid from the Japanese side had

Notes: * Paul Richardson is a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Birmingham.

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The visa-free Programme between Russia and Japan

a profound affect on the Russian Kuril Islanders who greatly appreciated the assistance at a time when their standards of living were becoming desperate and the feeling of being abandoned by their own politicians in Moscow was increasing. However, in the name of politics, rather than the well-being of the islanders, politicians could not help meddling in the programme and today there is a danger that one side or the other could suddenly decide to terminate the programme as happened with the humanitarian aid to the islands. This would be a shame for the Kuril Islanders who mostly want to maintain their visa-free visits to Japan which they rely on for many goods and services, and also for the descendents of the Japanese residents who want to pray at their ancestors’ graves or for the aging former residents who would like to take one last look at their homeland. When the programme moves beyond humanitarian exchange into naked politics then it undermines the foundations of the personal connections and good-will at the local-level that have begun to bridge the historical, geographical and cultural divide between Russia and Japan. Without such a bridge this Cold War territorial dispute will remain forever frozen.

The visa-free Programme between Russia and Japan

EURASIA REVIEW | By Paul Richardson

1) Borisov, S. (2009) "Japan will never reclaim the Southern Kurils". Russia Today, 10th July, 10th July, P o l i t i c s / 2 0 0 9 - 0 7 - 1 0 / ROAR___Japan_will_never_reclaim_the_Sou thern_Kurils_.html, Accessed, 29th May 2010. However, due to the travel costs it appears that ‘wealthier’ Kuril Islanders are making repeat visits rather than all of the islanders participating in the programme (The Sakhalin Times, 22 Sept – 6 December 2001, cited in WILLIAMS, B. (2007) Resolving the Russo-Japanese Territorial Dispute: Hokkaido-Sakhalin relations, Abingdon, Routledge. p.185).

thern_Kurils_.html, Accessed, 29th May 2010. 9) Ibid. 10) Anon (2009a) Senatory predlagayut vvesti vizovyi rezhim mezhdu Yuzhnymi Kurilami i Yaponiei. Kommersant", 7th July http:// DocsID=1200118, Accessed 29th May 2010. 11) Ibid. 12) Borisov, S. (2009) "Japan will never reclaim the Southern Kurils". Russia Today, 10th July, 10th July, 0 / ROAR___Japan_will_never_reclaim_the_Sout hern_Kurils_.html, Accessed, 29th May 2010.

2) Malakhov, I. (2005) Sakhalinskaya oblast' i Yaponiya: ot narodnoi diplomatii k biznesu mirovogo yrovnya. Rodina, 10, http:// id=1663&n=88, Accessed 17th Jan 2010. 3) Williams, B. (2007) Resolving the RussoJapanese Territorial Dispute: HokkaidoSakhalin relations, Abingdon, Routledge. p.83

13) Anon (2009b) Yapontsam prikazano pisat' ukazateli po-russkii. Kommersant", 9th July DocsID=1200648, Accessed 29th May 2010.

4) Mofa (2008) Japan's Northern Territories: For a Realtionship of Genuine Trust. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, http:// territory/pamphlet.pdf. p.5

14) Sycheva, E. & Mingazov, S. (2010) Ne predmet razgovora. Kommersant" (Khabarovsk), 20th May doc.aspx?DocsID=1371720, Accessed 29th May 2010.

5) Williams, B. (2007) Resolving the RussoJapanese Territorial Dispute: HokkaidoSakhalin relations, Abingdon, Routledge. p.82 -83

15) Ibid. 16) Borisov, S. (2009) "Japan will never reclaim the Southern Kurils". Russia Today, 10th July, 10th July, 0 / ROAR___Japan_will_never_reclaim_the_Sout hern_Kurils_.html, Accessed, 29th May 2010.

6) Oratai, V. (2009) Yapontsy otkazyvayutsya ot zapolneniya migratsionnykh kart. Kommersant" (Khabarovsk), 26th November, http:// DocsID=1280677, Accessed 29th May 2010.

17) Ibid. 18) Il'yuschenko, M. (2009) Kuril'skie ostrova popali v bespomoshchnoe polozhenie. Kommersant" (Khabarovsk), 13th Aug, http:// DocsID=1220009, Accessed 30th May 2010.

7) Ponomarev, S. (2005) Kak ne poteryat' Kurily? Marketing and Consulting, 29th June,, Accessed 18th June 2008. 8) Borisov, S. (2009) "Japan will never reclaim the Southern Kurils". Russia Today, 10th July, 10th July, P o l i t i c s / 2 0 0 9 - 0 7 - 1 0 / ROAR___Japan_will_never_reclaim_the_Sou

19) Ibid. 20) Ibid.

74 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States: Illusions, Reality, Perspectives By Zaur Shiriyev* The South Caucasus is a region where a number of unresolved conflicts still exist in the absence of regional security arrangements. Indeed, three unresolved (NagornoKarabakh, South Ossetia and Abkhazia) conflicts of the South Caucasus can be considered as one of the most serious obstacles for establishing a regional security system. The article gives brief information about security problems of the region and analyzes the perspectives of the realization of regional co-operation.

75 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States


he South Caucasus region which resulted Russia’s recognition of represents the most probAbkhazia and South Ossetia as independlematic region within the ent states. Today, security threats in the post-Soviet area in terms South Caucasus will remain serious, comof regional security conplex and urgent. At the center of these cerns. The regional security situation in concerns are three protracted unresolved the South Caucasus is best described as conflicts in Nagorno-Karabakh, Abkhazia “security deficit,” a term used by authors and South Ossetia. These conflicts pose of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute at major risk to regional states, population Johns Hopkins University(1). The security and regional security as a whole. deficit stemming from the interrelated and unregulated secuClearly, conflicts rity threats defuel those new scribed above have dangers that “The increasing importance of plagued the region threaten the nathe South Caucasus in the for a considerable tions in the entire time. The increasEuro-Atlantic aftermath of the anti-terrorist ing importance of space. Namely operation in Afghanistan and the South Caucasus these are ethnic the war in Iraq have now made in the aftermath of and religious exthe security deficit a threat the anti-terrorist tremism, internaoperation in Aftional organised not only to regional security ghanistan and the crime, human but to that of Euro-Atlantic war in Iraq have trafficking, illegal interests as well.” now made the secutrade in drugs, rity deficit a threat and what is parnot only to regional ticularly perilous, security but to that of Euro-Atlantic interthe existence of uncontrolled territories, ests as well. The need for institutionalized or the so-called “white spots”, which prosecurity arrangements to manage, reduce vide shelter to international terrorists and and if possible resolve the security threats allow them to develop relevant infrastrucin the region has become palpable. In fact, ture. it is increasingly apparent that failure to provide security is impeding the building of Therefore, as a solution to the problems, it viable sovereignty in the region. is extremely important to create hostility among the region states and others, One may agree or disagree with these which follow its interests in the region and assumptions. However, it is hard to deny aspire to keep the balance between their that the political situation in the Caucasus interests. How this cooperation can be is unique, unstable and even hazardous in achieved? If we get answers to this questerms of the perspectives of the regional tion, it will be possible for us to find a persecurity. This fact has been highlighted in manent solve to the problems in the August 2008 during Russia-Georgia war region.

76 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

Regional Co-operation: Two Approach

ment with Turkey, especially, on this issue, themselves are approaching reluctant because of the domestic political factors and pressure of the Diaspora. The position of Baku is mostly negative and fair towards trilateral regional cooperation. Azerbaijan has expressed its reluctance to collaborate with Armenia until the Karabakh conflict is resolved and all the occupied territories are returned to the Azerbaijan jurisdiction

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Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States

However, despite the integration of the Caucasus supported by the world union, because of the objective and subjective reasons it remained as an abstract model. Despite several studies of the political and economic problems in the Caucasus, it is controversial to say Russia or the West will determine the future of the Caucasus. To be more accurate, it is an issue of correlation between the settlement of the The core idea of the second concept conflicts and establishment of the coadopted by Armenia is operation based on the that the paramount factor of time. The question is: should the coimportance of settling operation be established the existing problems is accepted. Moreover, before or after the settle“ is controversial according to the conment of the conflicts? to say Russia or the There are two concepts cept, the addressing of for resolving the said dithe problems is the key West will determine issue for ensuring the lemma. the future of the regional security. The supporters of the secAccording to the first conCaucasus.” cept, the economic or any ond concept (Armenia) believe that the estabother type of cooperation lishment and advanceshould be embarked only ment of the coonce the problems are resolved. It will be right to start integration operation between the conflicting sides would change the situation and create with Georgia and Azerbaijan, which have more favourable political conditions, reinmany common opportunities and facilities force the mutual confidence, change the in the South Caucasus. In this point, the West farthest extending point of Turkey mentality of the people and, hence, open new horizons for the peaceful and civilised will directly be able to contribute to this settlement of the conflicts. integration. Armenia is the latest country to join integration process. Because Armenia has Nagorno-Karabakh problem with As a being a party to blame for lack of ecoAzerbaijan, with the Armenians in Cavalnomic and security cooperation intraregionally, Yerevan has proposed that reheti region, it has a problem with Georgia. gional cooperation should start from the Therefore, without solving these problems, formulation and accomplishment of conits entrance to the integration with other countries without obstacles is almost imcrete doable tasks(2). Karapetian, formulated the position of Yerevan as follows: possible. Although, they made rapproche-

Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

‘Armenia… believes that close cooperation “...Armenia … believes that close in the region, whether political, economic or cooperation in the region, whether security-based, will political, economic or security-based, will help to bring lasting help to bring lasting stability and prosperity stability and prosperity based on a sense of solid and shared based on a sense of solid and shared emergent values.” emergent values’(3). Today when Russia is rethinking its role in world affairs, given the weakening of Presently, Armenia stands largely sepaits economic and military capacities, Arrate from its two Caucasian neighbors menia has not got leeway in making its and, unable to develop relations with Turchoices. key, generally, acts more as an observer rather than a participant in the emerging partnerships in the region. It seems that if The Best Example of Regional CooperaAzerbaijan and Georgia are fixated on the tion: Azerbaijan and Georgia regional future, the Armenian thinking is still preoccupied by its past. Thus, not The contemporary example of strong remuch room is left for thinking about the gional partnership between Azerbaijan present; perhaps, a common trend for and Georgia, two nations with very differtransitional periods. ent dominant ethnic and religious groups, shows that not only a cooperative arAs the regional projects expand and derangement within the South Caucasus is velop further, Armenian non-participation possible, but also that it is, clearly, in the increasingly turns into a limitation for inteinterest of its participants. Moreover, the gration in the South Caucasus as a whole Azerbaijani-Georgian cooperation has had and destructive isolation for Armenia ita strong impact on the wider region, self. Should the current tendency of enamong other things, the largest infrastructrenching positions both in Baku and Yereture project, the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan, or van continue, with time it might be even BTC, pipeline, and by having served as the more difficult to bridge the differences and core for the GUAM, the Organization for help Armenia to become a fully integrated Democracy and Economic Development. member of the South Caucasus region. Such cooperation is not based on history, Comprehensive integration in the South but rather on the ability of both Baku and Caucasus, thus, can be achieved through Tbilisi to overcome existing obstacles for a the formulation and acceptance of a comvision of a common future of the Caucamon political identity based on the intersus. For the South Caucasus’ common ests of the Caucasian states and their future to be fully realized, however, Armecitizens. However imperfect, Azerbaijaninia must be a part.

78 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

Georgian relations provide evidence for the feasibility of such integration and a model of recognition through the accommodation of both the interests of the individual states and of the entire region.

ing the powerful states, pursue their own political, strategic and economic goals at the expense of the interests of the other countries; it became evident that the idea of establishing cooperation between the countries of the South Caucasus region is a more unrealistic but need to consider some ideas. Below some ideas on ensuring security and cooperation in the South Caucasus region are given in light of the current political situation and balance of forces: First: The regional security and realization of cooperation should base on the two "No"s: a) “No” to engagement of quasi states to the cooperation process between interstates;

b) “No” to the apply the Kosovo case as a As it seen, the integration process in the solution mechanism for the exciting conCaucasus will be realized gradually, with flicts in the South Caucasus region; extremely difficult and slow steps. Some difSecond: The realisaferences in the proction of cooperation ess of integration of should base on the “Comprehensive the Caucasus may two “Yes”s: integration in the occur, that is to say, South Caucasus, the targets for the a) “Yes” to more efprevious stages may fective Western enthus, can be achieved be realized in the latest gagement to the through the formulastages or the opposite. peace negotiation tion and acceptance process of NagornoConclusion Karabakh, Abkhazia of a common politiand South Ossetian cal identity based on The relatively South conflicts; the interests of the Caucasus has become Caucasian states and a zone of widely spread b) “Yes” to restoraconfrontations and tion of territorial intheir citizens.” conflicts. Very often tegrity of Azerbaijan many countries, includand Georgia.

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Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States

Another important element of the partnership between Baku and Tbilisi is the ability to overcome mutual historic and more recent emotional grievances as well as an understanding that all unresolved issues could be addressed through bilateral negotiations. Arguably, only such accommodation can serve as the basis for sustainable regional identity. One psychological factor that seems to underpin any such identity is the appreciation of the Caucasus being a common neighborhood for all of its citizens. Without an appreciation of this commonality, a regional cooperative arrangement is not likely to be effective.

CAUCASUS REVIEW | By Zaur Shiriyev

Regional Cooperation of South Caucasus States

Third: While the old conflicts occupy the minds of policy-makers in South Caucasus and in the international organizations, more efforts should be made to prevent new potential inter-ethnic conflict from erupting.

Eight: Full support initiatives within the framework of the EU “Eastern Partnership” new program consultations on regional cooperation perspectives contribute to the pursuit of optimal regional security architecture in the South Caucasus. But, after analyzing current situation it will be easy to discuss EU’s attempt’s efficiency.

Four: This should be taken into account that the region faces potential threats as spill over of insecurity from neighboring regions, particularly the Russian North Caucasus and a prospect of future conflict in Iran over its nuclear programme would have a detrimental affect on the South Caucasus region.

To sum up cooperation and effective regional security system, the Southern Caucasus has come to the crossroad. Either region will begin to integrate into Europe, anchor into the Euro-Atlantic security system and develop into an effective barrier to the proliferation of terrorism, extremism, drug trafficking and organised crime or there will be a wholesale deterioration of security and a new gateway to Europe will open for ethnic conflict, terror and insecurity.

Five: Support for an immediate and effective cease-fire including an active commitment by responsible local commanders to its implementation. Six: In the long run development of regional cooperation initiative between all regional states – along the lines of Turkish initiative for Regional Stability and Cooperation Platform which includes 3 South Caucasus state plus Russia and Turkey – should be encouraged. In the short term it is important to support integration of regional states in wider initiatives and organizations such as Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) and OSCE.

Notes: *Zaur Shiriyev is a foreign policy analyst based in Azerbaijan. 1) Svante E. Cornell,Roger N. McDermott,William D. O’Malley,Vladimir Socor, S. Frederick Starr, "Building Stability in the South Caucasus: The Role of NATO and Multilateral Security Organizations," Central Asia-Caucasus Institute, The Johns Hopkins University; Apr.21, 2004 2) Libaridian, G. J. (1997, June 23). The Politics of Promises. Conference titled the Transcaucasus Today: Prospects for Regional Integration. 3) Karapetian, V. (2001). Some Aspects of Foreign Policy in Armenia: an Armenian View of Regional Economic Cooperation as a Prerequisite for the Establishment of a Stable and Secure Environment in the Caucasus. In P. Hardouin, R. Weichhardt & P. Sutcliffe (Eds.). (2001).

Seven: Convening of the international conference on security problems of South Caucasus under the auspices of OSCE (or EU) with the participation of the three South Caucasus republics and regional players (Turkey, Iran, Russia). The purpose of the conference would be the determination of the fundamental solutions to the aforementioned problems which would be mandatory and universal for everyone.

80 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Brief History

A Brief Analysis Over the Historical Factors that Affect Today’s Iraq By Tamer Kasikci*

BRIEF HISTORY | By Tamer Kasikci

Brief History: Iraq


fter the invasion of US-led forces Iraq became the focus of the international relations. Many researchers began to write about the invasion and its aftermath. The current situation in Iraq is not suitable to make prediction about the future of the country but from regular people in Iraq streets to top level politicians in the White House everybody is curious about its future. But to understand the current situation and make prediction about future it is a necessity to examine the political development of the country. In this brief text, I am going to discuss the political development of Iraq by giving reference to factors that affect this process.

The White House

cal development. The creation of nationstate in Europe ended the period of multinational state formations but in many regions like in Iraq sub-identity creates the biggest challenge against the state-building process. Many authors try to explain the cultural diversification of the country from different perspectives. Some see the major conflict between Sunnis and Shiites. Some pay attention to the Kurdish problem while others point the distinction between urban and rural population. In my opinion it is a necessity to define the major sub-groups which have political influence throughout the history. From that perspective there are three groups: the Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. At that point it is necessary to warn the reader about this diversification. Because of the complexity of the population some researchers like Liora Lukitz, mistakenly see this diversification in a cultural perspective. But we should keep in mind that the Kurds are Sunnis. The major distinction between Kurds and other Sunnis is that the Kurds ethnically are not Arabs. They have different language and different ethnic roots as Michael Gunter explains in detail in his book. This diversification in society has created many problems in the political development of Iraq.

The history of Iraq goes back to 1920s as a political entity. Before that time the Iraqi region was dominated by the Ottoman Empire. During that time as Hans Boesch mentions in his old article this region has a geography which does not allow a wide population to live a rich life. Because of wide deserts and mountainous areas the population was limited and establishing a state authority over this geography was not easy. This reality is still valid today even though many crowded cities have been established. Obviously the major geographic factor that has affected the political development of the country is its rich oil industry. Even in 1930s the great power discovered the importance of the oil and this reality made the region one of the most important regions in international relations. Besides the geographic conditions which made the region uncontrollable, the population is another factor that affects the politi-

82 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

BRIEF HISTORY | By Tamer Kasikci

The political development of the country is very complicated process since it was created by an external power. Differently

took the control of the country. Moreover as Toby Dodge insists in his book the Shiite leaders, Mujtahids, were always seeking political power to unify their cities with the Shiite Iran. But this majority of the population has been controlled by Sunni minority. The best explanation for this phenomenon comes from William Polk. In his book he mentions that throughout the history, by beginning very early times, there has always been a gap between central government and the people in Iraq. This gap strengthens the government’s position against the people. Another main factor that affects the political development of Iraq is its rich oil reserves-as mentioned above-. In a country such a reserve would be an amazing chance for economic development but in Iraq, which is created by an external power it is not a chance because it makes the country as a target for major powers. As Abbas Alnasrawi mentions in his book Iraq

At that point it is an obligation to explain the structure of the society which allows this authoritative government to manage the country without any opposition. As mentioned above the society is formed by three major groups. While the Shiites is the largest one, always the Sunnis have the political power. Peter Sluglett and Marion FaroukSluglett explains this phenomenon by claiming that the Shiites always keep themselves away from political issues and live in cities that are closed to the world. This perspective is not sufficient to understand the issue. The very detailed book of Yitzhak Nakash proves that the Shiites were about to establish a political unit before the British forces

“...Iraq always has to be careful about using its oil reserves and open its economy to the world. If not, it can be punished by major powers like in the Gulf War, or oil boycott.”

83 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Brief History: Iraq

from the nation-building experience of the Westerns, the state was imposed from top to down. This character of the state formation process has been felt in all stages of the Iraqi history. As Reeva Spector Simon mentions in his book the origins of the administrators in the region has played a crucial role in the establishment of an authoritative state. But it is not fair to say that only these origins pave the way of absolute power which create suitable environment for the rise of such a tyrant like Saddam. The state builders could be influenced by German nation-state but what allowed these state-builders to maintain their power is the factors that Charles Tripp mentions in his book: the patron-client relations, the oil incomes and the use of violence. Throughout the Iraqi history, these three factors give the leader to control of the population in an authoritative way.

BRIEF HISTORY | By Tamer Kasikci

Brief History: Iraq

always has to be careful about using its oil reserves and open its economy to the world. If not, it can be punished by major powers like in the Gulf War, or oil boycott. Another problem that oil reserves caused is that as Alnasrawi insists, focusing of oil industry kills other industries. For that reason if there is a crisis in oil import like during the oil boycott time, the country suffers from the lack of other industries. This happened in Iraq history and crippled the economy.

Tragedy and Hope, St. Martin Press, New York, 1992, 3) Simon, Reeva Spector, Iraq Between the Two World Wars : The Militarist Origins of Tyranny Columbia University Press, 2004 4) Tripp, Charles, A History of Iraq, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 2000 5) Sluglett, Peter and Farouk-Sluglett, Marion, “Some Reflections on the Sunni/Shi'i Question in Iraq”, Source: Bulletin (British Society for Middle Eastern Studies), Vol. 5, No. 2 (1978), pp. 79-87 Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. Stable URL: stable/194789 Accessed: 05/03/2009 02:37

Today we are in a different stage of the Iraqi history. Even though the chaos within the country has not been absolutely controlled, elections were held and Iraq began to walk through its democratisation and modernization process. But it is crucial to keep in mind the historical factors that still affect Iraq during this process. Any state building attempt which ignores the historical realities of the country would deepen the chaos and open the way of a more authoritarian regime or disintegration of it.

6) Nakash, Yitzhak, The Shi'is of Iraq, Princeton University Press, Princeton NJ, 1994 7) Dodge, Toby, “Chapther 4: Rural and Urban: The Divided Imagination of Late Colonialism”, Book: Inventing Iraq: the Failure of Nation Building and a History Denied, Columbia University Press, New York, 2003, p.63 -81

Note: * Tamer Kasikci is an MA student at the University of San Diego.

8) Polk, William R., Understanding Iraq : A Whistlestop Tour from Ancient Babylon to Occupied Baghdad, I.B. Tauris & Company Limited, 2000


1) Boesch, Hans H, “El-'Iraq”, Source: Economic Geography, Vol. 15, No. 4 (Oct., 1939), pp. 325-361 Published by: Clark University Stable URL: Accessed: 04/03/2009 21:01

9) Alnasrawi, Abbas, “ Chapther 7: Iraq’s Economic Development, 19501990: An Assessment”, Book: The Economy of Iraq: Oil, Wars, Destruction of Development and Prospects 1950-2010, Greenwood Press, London, 1994, p.127-149

2) Gunter, Michael M., The Kurds of Iraq:

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The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq and Its Possible Alternatives By Rahman Dag*

85 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010


The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq


ontemporary Middle Eastern On the other hand, there is another signifistates have not yet reached cant determinant of the Middle Eastern to the full level of stability in countries in the respect of ideology, which is terms of domestic and forreligion namely Islam. The Middle East is a eign issues after the demise place where Islam came into existence and of the Ottoman Empire in World War I. Even it has been perceived as a natural part of today, several of them, such as Iraq, Yemen, that region and of people living in there. It Lebanon and Somalia have been struggling has penetrated into the blood of that region. with and suffering from severe internal conThese two basic components have taken the flicts Current internal quarrels in these Middle Eastern countries` pulse. Therefore countries have been experienced and yet no they are always effective in the politics of any solution has been found to halt them. This country in the Middle East as it is so for Iraq. essay is going to focus on current internal These two major ideological tenets- nationalconflicts in Iraq and apism and religion- are proaches to them from powerful identity signifi“In the regard of ideological an ideological perspecers in times of uncertain thoughts in the Middle East, tive. It is undeniable that structural conditions nationalism had been every single struggle and conflicts (Kinnvall, emerged as a culturally among belligerents in a 2004). particular conflict has its Arabist movements in the own ideology to justify In the regard of ideologilate Ottoman Empire with and legitimize its decal thoughts in the Midthe invasion of Egypt by mands and aim. By doing dle East, nationalism had France and commercial relaso, sides in a particular been emerged as a cultions between the west and fight seek to increase turally Arabist moveArab world via port cities their disciples and supments in the late Ottosuch as Beirut, Aleppo and porters. In the light of man Empire with the Basra.” these conditions, the invasion of Egypt by crucial question has France and commercial come to mind is the question of that Arab relations between the west and Arab world nationalism still has a chance to prevail in via port cities such as Beirut, Aleppo and Iraq`s politics and if it does not, what are its Basra (Antonius, 1938). That culturally Arab alternatives? movement changed into political nationalist movement when the Ottoman Empire colIt is very well known that from the late Ottolapsed and Western powers directly interman Empire to today’s world nationalism fered to the Middle East politics and created has become an inherent ideology for the Arab nationalism which means unification of Middle Eastern countries. Nationalism was all Arabs coming from the same cultural born and grew up in Europe and then has roots and having the same language spread to the world. It was the most funda(Dawisha, 2003 pp:2). With the forming of mental idea in the process of state building mandate system, Arab world was adminisin the post-World War I period. One of tratively divided rather than ruled by a single these states was modern Iraq which was political unity which covers all Arabs. As a established in 1922 as a British mandate. result of that, nationalist movements fought

86 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010


observed in it. Socialism is one of the strongest thought systems which had impacted on the politics and social structure of Iraq during the Baath Party regime in 1968 and onwards. Another one is secularism which is an inseparable element of European nationalism imported to the Middle East. Due to the predominant position of religion in the region, secularism has never got power as much as socialism has got. Yet, it is not to say that it did not have impact on the Iraqi politics (Al-Khalil, 1990 pp: 209). Up to now, it was sought to illustrate that several ideologies have been experienced in Iraq. From that point, it is going to move on to the main subject that in current internal conflicts in Iraq to what extend we can trace any ideological tenets. It is likely that subsectarian religious nationalism, regional nationalism and Islamism are prevailing ideologies in the internal conflict of Iraq rather than Arab nationalism. The invasion of Iraq by the USA and its allies paved the way for opening the Pandora’s Box for Iraq. Ethnic, tribal, religious, social and political divisions of Iraq have resurfaced since the modern Iraq was established in 1922 by the British Empire. These differentiations were held together by tyrannical powers; the King, generals and Saddam Hussein, respectively. In this sense, panArabist, nationalist, socialist discourse and ideologies has left their places to the local ethnic and sectarian groups` interests. In the respect of components of Iraq and their percentages in total population, that condition could be explained better. The population of Iraq is 28,945,569 (July 2009 est.). Ethnically, Arabs are 75%-80%, Kurdish are 15%-20% and Turcoman, Assyrian, or other 5%. Religiously, Muslims are 97% (Shia 60%-65%, Sunni 32%-37%) and Christians

If we specifically look at the ideological history of Iraq, a few more ideologies can be

“...nationalism has lost its previous dominance but did not completely lost its power.”

87 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq

for state independence instead of Arab independence (Barnett, 1995). In the colonial period, the nationalist sentiments evolved and generated Pan-Arabism which simply means the political unification of all Arab states. For instance, the initiation by Egypt, Syria and Iraq to be united as a pioneering force to encompass a unique and one Arab State is a concrete evidence of pan-Arabist ideology (Choueiri, 2000 pp:167). The failure and disunion of this enterprise and the defeat of Egypt by Israel in 1967 war due to Palestine question extinguished the flame of Arab nationalism. This was the turning point of the displacement of nationalist thoughts and it left its dominant position to the Islamic movements with the fostering role of Islamic revolution in Iran. During the revival of religious notions, territorial nationalism among Arab states has emerged and each Arab state sought to improve and solidify its own nationality for example Saudis, Iraqis, or Egyptians. After the short history of the evolvement of nationalism in the Middle East, it can be said for the contemporary conditions; nationalism has lost its previous dominance but did not completely lost its power. Moreover, it should be mentioned that this reminded that nationalism was not pan-Arabist nationalism but territorial nationalism.

The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq


or others are 3%(1). These figures show that ethnically major components of Iraq are Arabs and Kurds and major religious components are Sunnis and Shias. With the demise of Saddam` brutal and repressive regime, Kurds and Shias, who have been pressured for a long time, have emerged in the political arena and have sought to get as many concessions as they can. Therefore, struggle among Kurds - Arabs and Sunni Shia Arabs are two fundamental determinant of today’s internal conflict in Iraq. That throws light on the argument that ideological tenet of current domestic fighting in Iraq is not likely to be Arab nationalism but ethnic nationalism which is among Arabs and Kurds as well as sub-sectarian nationalism which is among Sunnis and Shiites.

and the ongoing Sunni insurgency. Even Sunni reaction to it has spread beyond Iraq’s border, from Syria to Pakistan. On the other hand, Shiites in the other Middle Eastern countries from Lebanon to Pakistan had a chance to visit Najaf which is one of the holy cities for Shiites. In this regard, reciprocal resentments and backlash among Sunnis and Shiites was and have been a potential conflict that is ready to break out in Iraq (Nasr, 2006). In addition to that conflict in Iraq, King Abdullah of Jordan has warned that a new “Shiite crescent” lying from Beirut to Tehran and even to Pakistan might dominate the Sunni structure of the Middle East. This notification (warning) is quite meaningful to emphasize to what degree the Sunni-Shiite conflict is perceived by other Sunni states in the Middle East.

To start with, the first of these ideological conflicts is Sunni-Shiite potential conflict. The primary strategy of the USA in Iraq is to eliminate all institutions and groups which are still loyal to Saddam, for instance, the abandonment of the Baath Party and the Army that was thought that it was full of buttress of Saddam. This process is called as De-Baathification which removed the main and significant obstacle in front of the Shiite revival in Iraq, whereas this process increased resentments among Sunni Arabs

From the Sharifian monarchy(2) (19211958) to the end of the Saddam Regime, Sunni domination had survived in Iraq. Throughout this period, the suppression of Shiites and denying the legitimacy of Shiites by the Sunni Officials cemented the aggression and anxiety among Sunnis and Shiites. A massacre against Iraqi Shiites in 1991 is a fundamental instance of this pressure on Shiites. Due to that historical background, invasion of Iraq was not directly rejected by Shiite communities while most of the Sunni groups stated their concerns about and reluctance to the invasion. The main reason for welcoming the USA by Shiite groups based on occupier’s powers discourse when they invaded Iraq, which was to bring democracy to Iraq and to release Iraqis from the Saddam regime. In this sense, as Shiite population is much more than any other groups in Iraq, they thought that Shiite party would get higher percentages of vote in a fair election. That is why Shiites remained mostly silent to the invasion but Sunnis were

“The primary strategy of the USA in Iraq is to eliminate all institutions and groups which are still loyal to Saddam, for instance, the abandonment of the Baath Party and the Army that was thought that it was full of buttress of Saddam.”

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completely against the invasion because it was obvious that they were going to lose their power that they had during the Saddam regime.

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The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq

kept by the governor of Iraq. They were not only used by the Iraqi government but also by other states as a political puppet such as Iran, USA and Russia. They became a potential mean for a power that has a strategy The bombings and assassinations throughover the Middle East (Ajami, 2003). The last out Iraq, especially in Baghdad are concrete disaster for the Iraqi Kurds was the Halabja indication of those reciprocal resentments massacre in which thousands of Kurds were among Sunnis and Shiites whether they are killed with a chemical weapon by Saddam`s against to each other or against the alliance forces. Kurdish question might seem a probforces, particularly against the US army. lem only for Iraq but actually it is crucial for That fighting sometimes reached the level of Iran, Turkey and Syria as well due to the fact civil war in Iraq. Sectarian struggle for that these states have considerable number power in Iraq is not likely to come to an end of Kurdish population in their territory. That in the foreseeable future. is another reason for being Sunni insurgency groups, genalone of Iraqi Kurds. Simply, the “The invasion erally they are radical Islamist competition between Arabs groups seem to be main and Kurds in the border of Iraq had led a threat to the stability in Iraq. has been continuing almost for condition that In light of these conditions in a century with a revolt in every Kurds took the Iraq, it is really hard to say decade (Schofield and Zenko, advantage of it that Arab nationalism is a 2004). via new federal pioneering ideology. It is because of that both sides SunThe invasion had led a condition structure of nis and Shiites are ethnically that Kurds took the advantage Iraq.” Arabs but their primary idenof it via new federal structure of tity is not race but their secIraq. Kurdish groups were altarians. ready released from the cruelty of Saddam with the UN decision that banned Iraqi Army The second core contradiction is between to pass over the 36th parallel after the first the Kurds and Arabs, especially Sunni ArGulf War in 1991. Since 1990s northern abs. From the very early date of formation of Iraq has become a separate part of Iraq and modern Iraq, Kurdish question has always after the invasion it gained its official federal occupied the agenda of Iraqi governments. state of Iraq. Now they have their own local As other successor states of the Ottoman parliament and government. This does not Empire, Kurdish people had been affected by mean that the relationship between Arabs the nationalist thoughts since the late Ottoand Kurds are completely smooth and there man Empire. Yet, they could not end their is no complication. For instance, the statue struggle with a separate nation-state in the of Kirkuk is today’s the most significant Middle East. Kurdish groups were several question due to the fact that it consists of times betrayed since the establishment of 8% of total oil reserve in the world. In this the modern Iraq. In 1920`s, they were regard, the main struggle over Kirkuk continpromised for a kind of federal government in ues between Sunni Arabs and Kurds. Their the northern Iraq but that promise was not common aim is to get the control of the city

The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq


because of its oil capacity. That is almost a kind of ethnic struggle between Arabs and Kurds and reminds us ethnic nationalism rather than Arab nationalism again. The last prominent ideology that can be seen in the internal conflict in Iraq is Islamism. As it was mentioned above, the Islam has been one of the most significant elements of social, cultural, economic and political life of any Middle Eastern country as it has been for Iraq since its foundation. Due to that fact, all sovereign ideologies or governments whether Islamic or not have used Islamic discourse in their speeches and politics. For instance, the triple ideological essence of the Baath Party in Iraq was nationalism, socialism and religion (Al-Khalil, 1990 pp: 183). However, it generally seemed to be nationalist and socialist party.

because of that religious foundation in the Middle East interacted directly to public and helped them via privately established social and health institutions. HAMAS in Palestine and Hezbollah in Lebanon are great example of that situation. Another critical reason for Islamic revival against Arab nationalism is the First Gulf War which some Arab states joined to the western forces against an Arab state, Iraq (Demirpolat, 2009). With regard to the internal conflict in Iraq, it is obvious that religious identity has overcome the Arab nationalist identity. That might not true for other Arab states in the Middle East but for Iraq, talking about Arab nationalism is probably out of question. In the term of illustrating the overwhelming Islamic character of current conflict in Iraq, looking at the statements of both Shiite and Sunni clerics is adequate. They have been articulating that Americans and their Christian allies are in Iraq to destroy Islam in its heartland and to steal Muslim’s oil (Luttwak, 2005). And if the group and religious loyalty are considered, it is not hard to comprehend to what extend the Islamism is prevailing the ideological conditions in Iraq. Furthermore, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, who is spiritual leader of Shiites in Iraq, stated that the religious constants and the Iraqi people`s moral principles and noble social values should have been the main pillars of the coming Iraqi constitution. Parallel to that, Sunni radical groups have already been adherents of religious structure of new Iraqi constitution as well as of social and cultural dimensions (Coleman, 2006). In this sense, inspite of that these two sectarian groups seem to be coherent on supreme position of religion; they follow distant arguments about sharing political power. That proves that their common point is not their ethnicity. So it is unlikely to articulate any more that Arab

With the failure of Pan-Arabism after 67 War between Israel and Egypt, nationalist sensation gradually had decreased till 1980s and it was replaced by religious thoughts through the Islamic revolution of Iran. Revival of Islamism in Iraq or any state in the Middle East is not only due to that revolution. Islamic groups have gained the support from the deprived rural people it is

“With the failure of Pan-Arabism after 67 War between Israel and Egypt, nationalist sensation gradually had decreased till 1980s and it was replaced by religious thoughts through the Islamic revolution of Iran.”

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nationalism generates ideological basis of post-2003 invasion of Iraq and it is hard to trace footsteps of Arab nationalism in current internal conflict of Iraq.

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The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq

conflicts among the major components of Iraq. These groups were being covered by the cooperation of British and the King Faisal, the military regimes and the despotic regime of Saddam, respectively since the These explanations might create a tendency establishment of Iraq and that had rendered to accept the total dominant position of the Iraq united. With the emergence of the difreligion but it is not. Some secular Kurds ferences among the major elements, the and Sunni Arabs are really strict to keep the picture of united Iraq shook at its core and religion out of government and administraevery single components of Iraq sought to tive institutions. For instance, in this regard, maximize and then preserve their interests the president of current Iraq, Jalal Talain the process of rebuilding of the state. bani`s statement is Being under the impact meaningful, which is that of nationalist movements “We will never accept in the Middle East and “...the struggle any religious governhaving a government with between Kurds and ment in Iraq. Never. This Sunni Arab dominance Arabs, between Sunnis is a red line for us. We (majority), nationalist and Shiites and Islamist will never live inside an movements and disand secularist can be Islamic Iraq”. Moreover, courses took places in called as ethnic Maysoon al-Damluji, the programme of Iraq`s nationalism, sectarian president of the Iraqi politics. It was because nationalism and Independent Women`s this fact that Iraq religious nationalism, Group, expressed her seemed to have a united respectively.” concerns about the inportrait but actually it did terpretation of sharia not. law which would take us backward. Additionally, Adnan Pachachi, the To sum up, internal conflicts of Iraq could former Iraqi foreign minister and a Sunni not be explained by any ideological tenet. It is leader mentioned his thoughts by mouthing obvious that there is no ideological evidence that they wanted to inject religion into everyof Arab nationalism due to the struggle thing, which was not right (Coleman, 2006). among Sunnis-Shiites, Kurds-Arabs and posWhen the position of these people and their sibly Secularists-Islamists. Unfortunately, statements were taken into consideration, bombings, killings, murdering and assassinatalking about absolute agreement on being tions within these groups and between the supreme and leading ideological power of US forces and Sunni radical groups inreligion namely Islam seems impossible. creased group loyalty and people give the That still does not change the reality that primary importance to their local and group widespread standing of Arab nationalism identity. That also enhances in-group solidarhas been lost among Iraqi`s agenda. ity and marginalizes the components to each other. As a result of that, the gaps Eventually, due to the fact that invasion of between the major groups arrive at the level Iraq by the US and its allies led to reconfiguof not able to meet (Inglehart, Moaddel, ration of Iraq and revealed the pressured Tessler, 2006). Generally, it can be said that


 Barnett, N. Michael. “Sovereignty, Nationalism, and Regional Order in the Arab State System.” International Organization 49 (1995): 479-510

in today`s internal conflicts of Iraq, observation of any practices of Arab nationalism is almost impossible. At the same time, we cannot clearly trace current conflict to any other ideological tenets. Yet, the struggle between Kurds and Arabs, between Sunnis and Shiites and Islamist and secularist can be called as ethnic nationalism, sectarian nationalism and religious nationalism, respectively. If the descriptions are correct, we can trace current internal conflict in Iraq to these kinds of nationalism.

 Choueiri, M. Youssef. Arab Nationalism: A History. USA, UK, and Australia: Blackwell Publishing, 2000.  Coleman, Isobel. “Women, Islam, and the New Iraq.” Foreign Affairs 85 (2006): 2438  Dawisha, A. and Dawisha K. “How to Build a Democratic Iraq.” Foreign Affairs 82 (2003): 36-50

The Demise of Arab Nationalism in Iraq


 Dawisha, A. Arab Nationalism in the Twentieth Century from Triumph to Despair. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003.

*Rahman Dag is an MA student at SOAS. 1. h t t p s : / / w w w . c i a . g o v / l i b r a r y / publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ iz.html 2. The Sharifian Monarcy means that the kingdoms of himself and his sons of Sharif of Mecca, Hussein. He was He became the king of Hejaz where Mecca and Medina locates. One of his son, Faisal became the king of Iraq and another son became the king of Jordan, Abdullah.

 Demirpolat, A. “The Changing Aspects of Arab Nationalism.” Ekev Akademi Dergisi 39 (2009): 87-96  Inglehart, R., Moaddel, M., and Tessler, M. “Xenophobia and In-Group Solidarity in Iraq: A Natural Experiment on the Impact of Insecurity.” Perspective on Politics 4 (2006): 495-505  Kinnvall, Catarina. “Globalization and Religious Nationalism: Self, Identity, and the Search for Ontological Security.” Political Psychology 25 (2004): 741-767

References:  AbuKhalil, A. “A New Arab Ideology?: The Rejuvenation of Arab Nationalism.” Middle East Journal 46 (1992): 22-36

 Luttwak, N. Edward. “Iraq: The Logic of Disengagement.” Foreign Affairs 84 (2005): 26-36

 Ajami, Fouad. “Iraq and the Arabs` Future.” Foreign Affairs 82 (2003): 2-18

 Nasr, Vali. “Regional Implication of Shi`a Revival in Iraq.” The Washington Quarterly 27:3 (2004): 7-24

 Al-Khalil, S. Republic of Fear: The Politics of Modern Iraq. Berkley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1990.

 Nasr, Vali. “When the Shiites Rise.” Foreign Affairs 85 (2006): 58-71, 73-74

 Antonius, H. George. The Arab Awakening: the Story of the Arab National Movement. London: Hamish Hamilton, 1938.

 Schofield, J. and Zenko, M. “Designing a Secure Iraq: A US Policy Prescription.” Third World Quarterly 25 (2004):677687.

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Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review “Newlonkong” is a neologism referring to the three international economic centres namely New York, London and Hong Kong. However, among the three places, Hong Kong might be regarded as the most democratically backward. By Antony Ou*

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Constituencies (FC). For the former, general voters (around 3.37 millions) directly select their candidates based on their geographical districts; for the latter, membership of voters are highly restricted—only around 226,000 electors—composed by individuals, organisations and corporations. They have the right to cast a vote for their candidates. For the composition of the FC, it includes mainly businesses and a number of professional sectors (See Appendix). For examples, the FCs of Agriculture and Fisheries, Insurance and Transport are elected via process of corporate voting, of which the latter comprises legal entities but not “natural person”. In this sense, the only eligible voters of these FCs are the ones who own companies of respective constituencies. The problem follows that for these 226,000 electors, around 57,000 of them control over 80% of 30 FC seats (i.e. 25 seats). And within these 25 seats, 12 seats are coming from 10 constituencies selected by 5,600 voters who are all corporate voters. That is to say about 5,600 corporate voters control 40% of FC seats. To paraphrase the famous quote from the Animal Farm, we can then say, in Hong Kong, some voters are more equal than the others. It gives corporate minorities too much power and influence over Hong Kong. Most ironically, the functional constituency of Hong Kong might lead someone to associate it with the equivalent functional or occupational legislative representation of the German Nazi regime, which attempted to pave the way to make Germany into a corporate totalitarian state.

Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

The Problems There is now no universal suffrage for the Chief Executive of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Instead, an 800-member Election Committee enjoys the special privilege of electing the Chief Executive, according to the Basic Law, the mini-constitution for the Region. The 800 members are drawn from the voters of the Functional Constituencies (FCs), the religious sector, and district and central government organisations. The Chief Executive then appoints the Executive Council, which primarily functions as the “cabinet” of the Chief Executive. Some could easily argue that the Chief Executive and his/her cabinet can by no means represent the citizens of Hong Kong, simply because he/she is not competitively voted by the general public. By any modern democratic standard, such kind of indirect election is definitely a product of authoritarianism. In addition, the Legislative Council (LegCo) is a quasi-bicameral system, which is constituted by 30 seats of Geographical Constituencies (GC) and 30 seats of Functional

“To paraphrase the famous quote from the Animal Farm, we can then say, in Hong Kong, some voters are more equal than the others.”

Worse still, the issue of separate voting is one of the most frustrating built-in procedures for the pan-democrats of Hong Kong. For any citizen and legislator, he/she can propose a bill to be passed by the LegCo.

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The Logo of Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor. The logo based on Chinese character meaning 'human'

However, this can only be possible by winning separate voting of both GCs and FCs. As for any bill proposed by the government, only a simple majority is required to pass the bill. And for any amendment of the Basic Law, it requires the absolute consent of two-thirds of the LegCo members to support the bill, before entering to the Chief Executive (veto power is given under Article 159) and Hong Kong’s deputies to the National People’s Congress. That is to say, on one hand, by separate voting, any bill proposed by pan-democrats, or any bill concerning public interests, could be easily rejected by the FC legislators, who incline to represent the interests of large corporations and the government. On the other hand, any government bill can be passed relatively easily because the governmentfriendly camps (from both GCs and FCs) ensure the simple majority. The recent controversial bill on the High-Speed Railway System (costing HK$66.9 billion) is a perfect example of such legislative mechanism: despite of a mass rally outside the LegCo building, the government only needed to ensure one thing—the collaboration of the government-friendly legislators— in order to pass the bill. No wonder Human Rights Monitor criticized the FC as a highly corrupted entity.

After the failure of proposing a seemingly “progressive” political reform in 2005, in 2007, the Chief Executive Donald Tsang asked the central government whether there would be a democratic future for Hong Kong people. Tsang reported that we have to wait till 2017 for the possibility of getting two-thirds of the LegCo members to support the reform. The NPCSC allowed the possibility for the 2017 Chief Executive and 2020 LegCo elections via the means of universal suffrage. In 2009, there was a consultation on political reform, which was very similar to the proposal set in 2005. The key points of the proposed package are summarised as below:  The number of members of the Election Committee for the Chief Executive is increased from 800 to 1200;  There will be 100 new members of the Election Committee who are District Council and LegCo members. They are chosen by the other District Council and

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Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

In the Articles 45 and 68 of the Basic Law, it clearly states that the Chief Executive and all the LegCo members of Hong Kong will be ultimately elected by universal suffrage. Yet, the problems remain since we do not know when and how they will be elected. In Annex 1, Section 7 of the Basic Law, it states that laws about the election could be amended as soon as in 2007. The Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPCSC), which has the ultimate power to interpret the Basic Law, promulgates that any amendment to the electoral law must be supported by the NPCSC. On 26 April 2004, the NPCSC abruptly denied the possibility of universal suffrage in 2007 for the Chief Executive and 2008 for LegCo.


for Hong Kong democratic progress by having more popularly voted District Council members. However, despite the fact that FC is one of the key sources of a nondemocratic Hong Kong, the proposal never mentions the abolishment of the FC. Instead, by having five more seats to the FC, the FC is arguably more difficult to be brought to an end in the future. Since the Basic Law ensures the same numbers of GC and FC seats, it is extremely difficult to have two-thirds of LegCo members to abolish the FC by amending the Basic Law. To put it in the simplest sense, who would vote against their own FC seats and step down accordingly?

Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

“...the Chief Executive election is still a non-democratic election participated by 1,200 privileged citizens instead of the 3.7 million adults in Hong Kong.”

LegCo members;  The threshold of Election Committee nomination will be reduced to 150;  The size of the LegCo will be increased from 60 to 70 seats with five additional Geographical and Functional Constituencies respectively;  The new Functional Constituency seats are all District Council members. They are chosen by the other District Council members via proportional representation (amended in April 2010).

These odd proposals, together with the long stagnated democratic progress, trigger the new movement, that some people would find it non-harmonious— the de facto referendum. The “Non-Harmonious” Hong Kong The concept of a “harmonious society” has become an over-arching theme campaigning over the years in China. The Chinese central government advocates that it is necessary to construct a “harmonious society” while enjoying the economic prosperity. The term has been repeatedly criticized as a strategy that underplays the democratic reform of China. Hong Kong, as part of China after 1st July 1997, is of course included in this grand theory of harmonious society. Interestingly, however, according to a recent survey conducted by the Chinese University of Hong Kong, there are a quarter of Hong Kong population (around 1.53 million citizens) who think that Hong Kong is not a harmonious society and Hong Kong people should apply more radical measures when fighting for democracy and other

The 2009 political reform proposal, amended in April 2010, by nature, is just like the 2005 one. They are nothing close to universal suffrage. With complicated procedures and newly created traps, the government shows no signs of improvement for the present undemocratic political structure. For instance, the Chief Executive election is still a non-democratic election participated by 1,200 privileged citizens instead of the 3.7 million adults in Hong Kong. Besides, in the name of “gradual and orderly progress”, the “democratic element” added to the LegCo is minimal. According to the government and its “ideologues”, the proposal is one huge step

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demands. The result is alarming for the SAR government as well as the central government, both of which emphasise so much on the importance of a stable government.

standard legislative procedure. The Basic Law never offers a de jure referendum, nonetheless, the “Five Constituencies Referendum” serves as a de facto one. Its purpose, according to the resigned LegCo members, is to let every Hong Kong citizens to participate in a form of direct democracy—to decide whether there should be a genuine political reform, which guarantees universal suffrage, and the abolishment of the FC system.

Logo of Civic Party

Since late January 2010, LSD and Civic Party advertised their campaign with the (in)famous slogan “uprising of the people” (

). It generated a lot of media

attention, controversy from the general public, and strong condemnations from Beijing and the “Royalists” (the pro-Beijing advocates). On one hand, Rita Fan, a Hong Kong Deputy to the NPCSC, denounced the slogan was dangerous and misleading, since the term “uprising” in Chinese implies revolution and violence and it is a term that destabilises and disharmonises any healthy society. Other pro-government critics, such as Elsie Leung, Ip Kwok-him and Gordon Wu, insisted the slogan entailed anarchy, treason or even armed conflict. Whilst on the other hand, Audrey Eu and Raymond Wong, the Presidents of the two “uprising” parties, argued that the purpose of the slogan was never meant to support any

The 2010 Hong Kong by-election, which will be held on 16 May, was triggered by the resignation of five pan-democrat LegCo members in January of the same year. The resigned LegCo members named it “Five Constituencies Referendum”, that requires one pan-democratic lawmaker from each of the five GCs to resign and then consequently triggers a by-election, which is a

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Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

Some commentators and scholars interpret that the only reason for a government to promote harmony is because the society of which it governs lacks harmony. More importantly, politicians often do not acknowledge the fact that in nature, politics is never harmonious. An open society needs channels for non-harmonious, pluralistic political interactions. Hong Kong enjoys the rights to demonstrate, assemble and express, yet, when it comes to the right to universal suffrage, the SAR government disappoints Hong Kong citizens. The Logo of LSD (League of Social Democrats) “radical” but nonviolent measures that the survey mentioned make people think of the recent controversy on de facto referendum. The League of Social Democrats (LSD) and the Civic Party were the initiators of this so-called “New Democratic Movement”.

Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review


violent revolution and independence. Rather, it referred to any rational political activities such as the “de facto referendum”. For the other pan-democrats, their positions on referendum were more ambiguous. The “Alliance for Universal Suffrage” is composed of 13 pro-democracy communities, including the Democratic Party (the largest pan-democratic party). The group has persistently advocated for a mild political position, that pan-democrats should strive for dialogues between Hong Kong and China on the issue of democracy, based on rationality and mutual understanding. However, the “uprising” parties and their supporters criticised the Alliance as too simple and naïve, since the pandemocrats have been “rational” and “reasonable” for more than 20 years. Yet, no visible changes have resulted. For the “radical” advocates, without any radical but non-violent measure in order to express their democratic demands, Hong Kong people can never see a reasonably democratic future.

is solely to fill up the five LegCo seats, and 2) it is totally unnecessary to have a byelection for the sake of 2012 universal suffrage, since the NPCSC has provided a schedule for Hong Kong people, assuring a “gradual and orderly” democratic progress. In other words, the SAR government does not encourage citizens to vote and would rather see a low voting-rate. By contrast, the responses of the Central Government as well as its subordinates are much more vigorous and severe. For instance, Peng Qinghua, the Head of Communist Party of China Hong Kong Liaison Office, criticised, “There are political groups that have launched the so-called 'five constituencies referendum campaign,' even proposing sensational and extreme slogans like 'civic uprising' and 'liberating Hong Kong’. This is a total violation of mainstream public opinion that wants stability, harmony and development.” Among many “Royalists”, Maria Tam is the most out-spoken one. As a member of the Preparatory Committee for the HKSAR, a deputy of the NPC, and Hong Kong Affairs Advisor (PRC), she insisted that the “de facto referendum” is an attempt to violate the Basic Law. She said Hong Kong is not a sovereign state, but only a special administrative region, which does not have absolute control over critical political reform. In this sense, the resigned legislators are not granted the authority to uphold any referendum.

The SAR government’s responses are plain: 1) The nature of the 2010 by-election Maria Tam

For the government-friendly camps like the Liberal Party and the Democratic Alliance for the Betterment and Progress of Hong Kong (DAB), they chose to boycott the

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Mr. Qiao Xiaoyang

The NPCSC Deputy Secretary-General Qiao Xiaoyang recently repeated what was already stated in the 2009 political reform consultation document— The Five-Step Mechanism”:

Kong democratic reform. In other words, NPCSC is the ultimate hope of the “ultimate universal suffrage”. Back in 1991, way before the handover of sovereignty over Hong Kong from the U.K. to the PRC, Kuan Hsin-chi, the former department head of Government and Public Administration, Chinese University of Hong Kong, now the chairman of Civic Party, contended that,

Step One: The CE shall make a report to the NPCSC as to whether there is a need to amend the two electoral methods; Step Two: A determination shall be made by the NPCSC that the two electoral methods may be amended; Step Three: The motions on the amendments to the two electoral methods shall be introduced by the HKSAR Government to the LegCo, and be endorsed by a twothirds majority of all the members of the LegCo; Step Four: Consent shall be given by the CE to the motions endorsed by the LegCo; Step Five: The relevant bill shall be reported by the CE to the NPCSC for approval or for the record.

“Hong Kong is a British colony. It will become, in 1997, a Special Administrative Region under the authority of the Central People’s Government of China, i.e. a local government within a unitary state. Thus, Hong Kong is and will remain a dependent polity. In a situation of power dependence, the choice of the rulers of the hegemonic country who set the rules of the game is crucial for political change in the dominated polity.”

The Five-Step Mechanism emphasises NPCSC is the ultimate power of any Hong

In other words, Hong Kong’s democratic future is, to a large extent, pre-destined.

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Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

“unconstitutional act”. For the Liberal Party, its former chairman James Tien and his brother Michael Tien were once showing interest to gain LegCo seats like any other opportunists. However, they never handed in their applications. For DAB, its vicechairman Ip Kwok-him saw disparaging opinions towards the by-election and argued that DAB would only participate if the by-election were not interpreted as a referendum. Chairman Tam Yiu-chung even challenged the resigned LegCo members by saying that the by-election is a farce which squanders taxpayers’ money and disharmonises social stability.


Appendix: Structure and Electors of Hong Kong Functional Constituencies** Name of Functional Constituencies

No. of Registered Electors

Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review







Heung Yee Kuk


Agriculture and Fisheries



























Health Services



10 Engineering



11 Architectural, Surveying and Planning



12 Labour (3 Seats)




13 Social Welfare 14 Real Estate and Construction






15 Tourism



16 Commercial (First)



17 Commercial (Second)




18 Industrial (First)




19 Industrial (Second)



20 Finance



21 Financial Services



22 Sports, Performing Arts, Culture and Publication







24 Textiles and Garment




25 Wholesale and Retail




26 Information Technology




27 Catering








23 Import and Export

28 District Council TOTAL


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The rules and procedures can never be changed solely by Hong Kong citizens, rather, there is only one single Leviathan that has the absolute power over the democratic progress of Hong Kong: she determines, reallocates, permits, prohibits, justifies, internalises and normalises. The resigned LegCo candidates will most probably be re-elected with low turnout rate (This essay was written just before the byelection/referendum). However, what is the point of going through all these political advocacies? Maybe some Hong Kongers are losing their patience. Maybe some of them never trust their government. Maybe they are showing their anger and grievances towards a political hegemony and economic oligarchy. Or maybe, they are fighting for a just cause, of which Goliath might feel slightly uncomfortable about it. The de facto referendum was in fact broadcasting nationwide, and was deeply criticised by the PRC. The government controls basically all the media, yet, whether the people would think exactly the same way is another question.

Methods for Selecting the Chief Executive and for Forming the Legislative Council in 2012 Government of Hong Kong, 18 November 2009 Further Reading:

Acknowledgment: I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to Miss Erica Lowe for her editing of my script. Usual disclaimer applies. Notes: * Antony Ou is a PhD Researcher of University of Sheffield and the China Review editor of Political Reflection Magazine. His monograph, Just War and the Confucian Classics: A Gongyangzhuan Analysis, has been published and is available at E-mail: [email protected] Twitter: ** Source: Constitutional & Mainland Affairs Bureau, Public Consultation on the

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Hong Kong Democracy: A Pessimistic Review

1) Chan, Ming K. and Alvin Y. So (eds.) 2002. Crisis and Transformation in China's Hong Kong. Armonk and London: M.E. Sharpe. 2) Cheung, Anthony Bing-leung and Kinsheun Louie. 1991. Social Conflicts in Hong Kong, 1975-1986: Trends and Implications. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Institute of AsiaPacific Studies, Occasional Papers No. 3. 3) Hughes, Richard . 1976. Borrowed Place, Borrowed Time : Hong Kong and its many faces. London : Andre Deutsch. (2nd rev. ed.) 4) King, Ambrose Yeo-chi. 1975. "Administrative Absorption of Politics in Hong Kong: Emphasis on the Grass Roots Level," in: Asian Survey 15:5 (May). P. 422439. 5) Kuan, Hsin-chi. Power Dependence and Democratic Transition: The Case of Hong Kong. The China Quarterly, No. 128 (Dec., 1991), pp. 774-793. Cambridge University Press 6) Lau Siu-Kai (ed.) 2002. The First Tung Chee-hwa Administration: The First Five Years of the HKSAR . Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press. 7) Lau, Siu-kai. 1982. Society and Politics in Hong Kong. Hong Kong: The Chinese University Press. 8) Miners, Norman. 1991. The Government and Politics of Hong Kong. (5th. ed.) Hong Kong: Oxford University Press. 9) Sing, Ming. 2004. Hong Kong's Tortuous Democratization: A Comparative Analysis. London: RoutledgeCurzon. 10) Scott, Ian. 1989. Political Change and the Crisis of Legitimacy in Hong Kong. London: Hurst & Company.

On Michael Haneke’s

Funny Games US

Film Review

By Enes Erbay*

102 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

FILM REVIEW | By Enes Erbay


as an anti-thriller because there is neither a rescue sequence, nor a revenge scenario; there is even no happy ending to the story. The violence, on the other hand, is never really disclosed in the film, except the bloody death of Peter, but rather indicated in the soundtrack or recorded in the faces of the killers or of family members. Only the effects of violence on the victims are shown through close-ups and long shots, and with a slow tempo in montage and camera, which allows audience a distanced ‘thinking space’. The question that seems to be posed most often to Michael Haneke in many interviews is: “Do you enjoy disturbing the audience?” But how should we approach this terrifying style of the director? According to Wheatley, ‘An unpleasure calls attention to itself in a way that pleasure does not, it prompts the viewer to question what it is in the film that causes this feeling, and hence forces them to engage rationally with the image on screen. The film thereby employs spectatorial “unpleasure” as a device for mobilizing a tension between reason and emotion, creating a moment of “impact” for the viewer.’(1) The physical environment of the scene that I have selected from Funny Games US to discuss in this article(2) — even the atmosphere of the whole film — and the elements in it are overly structured by an emphasis on ‘whiteness’: The living room, with its white walls, is furnished by various items in different tones of white — doors, cupboard, arm chairs, coffee table, frameworks of the windows, curtains, carpet, lampshade, tableaus hanged on the walls, (silver-

103 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Funny Games U.S.

s a masterpiece in Haneke’s filmography, Funny Games US (2007) is a remake of the Funny Games (1997). This anti-thriller, like the others that precede it, is a critical enquiry of brutality and spectatorship, and undoubtedly it takes a sui generis place among other examples of the aesthetics of violence. The plot of the film is irritatingly simple: A rich American family of father, mother and son (with their dog) go on vacation to their lakeside villa. A well-groomed young man arrive clad in golf gear and asks to borrow some eggs. Then a second young man unexpectedly appears and the two proceed, without any purpose, to terrorise and then kill dog, son, father, and mother. It should absolutely be defined

Funny Games U.S.

FILM REVIEW | By Enes Erbay

coloured) television, eggs, and so forth. The purity of the atmosphere is also supported by some distinctive features of the characters: privileged race (white Western), upper class (classical Western music, an expensive jeep, a white elegant villa, a white yacht, white golf clothes, gloves, shoes), gender (queerlike couple). This emphasis on ‘whiteness’ is a parody that renders questionable the conventional approaches of the psychology of colour and problematizes the notion of ‘signification’ in a deconstructive way: the psychopathological attitudes of the queer-like couple Paul and Peter definitely seem incompatible with the purity of white and its historical references to ethical and religious dimensions — divine, angelic, spiritual, good-hearted, and so forth. Moreover, their speaking English with a good accent in addition to their smooth appearance, gentility, baby-face attractiveness and slightly effeminate behaviors absolutely seem at variance with the classical rhetoric of male domination, or with macho/masculine manners: In Ritzenhoff’s words, it would not be a bold claim that Paul and Peter ‘simply like to exert violence. Out of boredom. Out of lack of humanness. Maybe also out of lack of masculinity because they are no longer driven in their crime by their libido.’(3) This parody opens up a space to criticise the aestheticized, sentimental, mundane, sterile life form of bourgeoisie and its isolatedness from the mud of everyday life and from the crowds of ordinary people, with strong expressive forces: the extreme whiteness of the room brings the ‘white

cube’ model of contemporary art museums into mind, and increases the devastating power of squirting blood effect in an exhibitionist way (4). Briefly speaking, the threat to family happiness and bourgeois consumerism does not come from a rogue element at the edge of society, but from within the upper class. Moreover, the scene also shows us that the ‘white’ dreams of the secular life of the family are disturbed by the ‘white’ demons’ un-spiritualcall for prayer: ‘“I love you God with all my might. Keep me safe all through the night.” If you can say this little, unfortunately, much too short of a prayer backwards with no mistakes, not only will you be able to decide which one of you bites it first but also — and I’m sure this is gonna interest you more — with which device: whether it’s the fast and almost painless big gun or the slow, drawnout...’ *** Film is an event which is multiple in itself in the sense that cinematic time is constituted by a cluster of temporalities. Mary

104 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

FILM REVIEW | By Enes Erbay

105 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

Funny Games U.S.

Ann Doane formulates these ‘multiple temspectators, just as Paul and Peter play poralities’ in the following way: the tempotheir ‘funny games’ with the family: Paul rality of the apparatus (which she dewinks into the camera and asks the viewer, scribes as ‘linear, irreversible, ‘you want a real ending with plausible plot “mechanical”’), the temporality development, don’t you?’ of diegesis (‘the way in which time is represented by the image, the varying invocaNote: tions of present, past, future, historicity’) and finally the temporality of reception *Enes Erbay is an M.A. Student in Direct(5). According to this formulation, cineing: Film and Television at the University of matic time, as a continuum that is ‘infinitely Westminster divisible’, is an illusion of a nonselective record of real time; in other words, there are References: always irrepressible gaps, lacks, losses and 1) Catherine Wheatley, divisions between frames Michael Haneke’s Cinema: “...continuity-as(6). At this juncture, it The Ethic of the Image should be enunciated continuous-break in (New York: Berghahn that continuity-asBooks, 2009), p. 78. the duration of continuous-break in the 2) The scene takes place cinematic time is duration of cinematic between the time codes neither bound by time is neither bound by 01:29:25 and 01:40:30 linearity or teleology, nor in DVD. linearity or teleology, is it irreversible. Haneke 3) Karen A. Ritzenhoff, nor is it irreversible.” ironically stresses this ‘The Frozen Family: Emo‘reversibility’ of cinematic tional Dysfunction and time, when the mother manConsumer Society in Michael ages to grab a gun and shoot Paul’s Haneke’s Films,’ in Sex and Sexuality accomplice. Just after the violent and sanin a Feminist World, eds. Karen A. guineous death of Peter, Paul grabs a reRitzenhoff and Katherine A. Hermesp mote control and rewinds the scene, secur(Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge ing control over the film’s outcome: ‘Okay, Scholars Publishing, 2009), p. 75 that was the test run!’ Finally, I should also [emphasis added]. point out that Funny Games has many in4) Cf. Another squirting blood effect on the tertextual references to not only Haneke’s white wall in Haneke’s Caché (2005): other films but also Stanley Kuthe scene in which Majid commits a brick’s Clockwork Orange (1971) shocking suicide. and Shining(1980): aesthetization of vio5) Mary Ann Doane, The Emergence of lence, strange men in white clothes, comCinematic Time: Modernity, Contining balls as precursors of the horror, psygency, The Archive (London: Harvard choanalytic triangle of family — father, University Press, 2002), p. 30 mother, son. As for the performance and 6) Doane, The Emergence of Cinematic self-referentiality, the film plays with us, the Time, pp. 33-68.


RECENT BOOKS ON POLITICS European Corporate Governance Readings and Perspectives Authors: Thomas Clarke, Jean-Francois Chanlat

In light of the most severe financial crisis since the 1930s, this intelligent look at European corporate governance is a vital textbook for courses on corporate governance and a great supplementary textbook on a host of business, management and accounting classes.

ISBN: 978-0-415-40534-8 For decades, Europe has sought to become more financially integrated with the United States and thus European legal institutions, regulatory, governance and accounting practices have faced pressures to adapt to international competitive markets. Against this backdrop, European corporate governance systems have been criticized as being less efficient than the AngloAmerican market based systems. This textbook examines the unique dimensions and qualities of European corporate governance. Reforms of key institutions, the doctrine of shareholder value and the seemingly irresistible growth of CEO power and reward are critically analyzed. The book brings out the richness of European corporate governance systems, as well as highlighting historical weaknesses that will require further work for a sustainable corporate governance environment in the future.

Public Management and Governance: Second Edition Authors: Tony Bovaird, Elke Löffler ISBN: 978-0-415-43043-2 The role of government in managing society has once again become a hot topic worldwide. A more diverse society, the internet, and new expectations of citizens are challenging traditional ways of managing governments. The second edition of Public Management and Governance examines key issues in efficient management and good quality service in the public sector. With contributions from leading authors in the field, it goes beyond the first edition, looking at the ways in which the process of governing needs to be altered fundamentally to remain legitimate and to make the most of society’s many resources.

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Key themes include:  challenges and pressures facing modern governments worldwide  the changing role of the public sector in a ‘mixed economy’ of provision  governance issues such as ethics, equalities, and citizen engagement This new edition has an increased international scope and includes new chapters on partnership working, agency and decentralised management, process management, and HRM. Comprehensive and detailed, it is an ideal companion for undergraduate and postgraduate students of public management, public administration, government and public policy.

Participatory Research Methodologies Development and PostDisaster/Conflict Reconstruction Author: Alpaslan Ozerdem ISBN-13: 978-0754677352 Participatory research methodologies have been used since the 1970s as a tool to garner accurate information about communities in which development practitioners operate. Their usefulness as a collection of research techniques has been evident in academic


disciplines such as politics sociology anthropology and economics, among others. This informative text assesses the use of participatory methods as a research tool in the contexts of development and reconstruction after conflict and disasters by identifying cross-cutting themes and establishing a comparative lessons-learned framework that can help inform future uses of them, both for practitioners and researchers. More importantly, rather than adopting a prescriptive perspective, this book provides a critical analysis of such methodologies. Specifically, the reader will benefit from the collation of the experiences of those who utilize participatory research methods in different countries and contexts, and from different academic and practitioner perspectives.

Just War and the Confucian Classics: An Analysis of Gongyangzhuan Author: Antony Ou

some sort of moral warrant. However, most contributions have drawn on the longstanding Western tradition of debate, which has for many centuries been inspired by Christian thinkers, and continues to be informed by Christian moral codes. Other traditions, for examples, Islamic and Confucian thinking have been given some attention. However, their status has been no more than marginal. In these circumstances it is necessary to engage in intensive textual exegesis and analysis of the Confucian classics. Only by digging deep into the tradition is it possible to make sense of its historical significance over centuries. In this spirit, this thesis seeks to provide a Confucian perspective on the just war theory by focusing not on the works to which scholars are usually drawn, but on Gongyangzhuan, which was rarely held to have much to add to the just war historical analysis.


ISBN-13: 978-3639157901 Author: Fareed Zakaria The revival of interest in the just war theory, sparked in large part by publication of Michael Walzer’s Just and Unjust Wars at the end of the 1970s, has generated widespread analysis of the conditions in which recourse to arms can be given

ISBN-13: 9780393334807 In his influential book Fareed Zakaria evaluates the growth of the global economy in recent world and claims that while in economic terms the US has

been declining the rest of the world is gaining more strength. Depending on that argument Zakaria argues that the US would not enjoy a unipolar world in which they easily pursuit unilateral policies. In an optimistic way Zakaria insists that the economic growth would create new powers and the US would be forced to compromise in order to keep its position as a great power.

Endless War: Middle-Eastern Islam vs. Western Civilization Author: Ralph Peters ISBN-13: 9780811705509 In his Ralph Peters gathers his articles about political Islam and the Middle East. What makes unique this book is that rather than making a superficial analysis the author presents a deep historical framework which enables the reader to understand the roots of the political Islam, its expansion throughout the Middle East and its evolution through the time. Peters simply gives a history course to the Middle Eastern students by examining the rise and fall of the political Islam during the Ottoman Empire. With independent articles he talks about not only the historical side of the subject but also the contemporary issues over it.

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When China Rules the World

ISBN: 0230243339

Author: Michiko Kakutani

In the past two decades the overlapping generations (OG) model has become a dominant framework in macroeconomic analysis. This book provides a clear and self-contained introduction to OG economies. Starting with the existence of equilibrium and the optimality of allocations, the discussion then turns to properties of equilibria, including the existence of fluctuations and sunspot equilibria, ending with applications to the theories of exchange rates and endogenous growth.

ISBN-13: 9781594201851 With the tremendous growth rates China has become one of the leading power in 21th century. In his book Kakutani, as a journalist who had lived in China for a long time, the rise of China would change the current structure of the international system. He claims that If it keeps on growing at such high rates China would be able to replace the global dominion of the US. He makes an interesting point by saying that the rise of China is not like the rise of the Great Britain, Germany or the US. These forces emerged as dominant in such periods. But China had been dominant before in ancient times. Now it has been recovering its dominant position. In other words it is re-emerging as a hegemon. Unlike many, Kakutani claims that China is getting power not only economically but also culturally and politically. These dimensions would help China to be a dominant in near future.

RECENT BOOKS ON ECONOMICS Overlapping Generations Economies Author: Mich Tvede

Throughout the book, OG economies are compared and contrasted with optimal growth economies. The presentation includes detailed proofs of results as well as illustrative examples. Growing out of research and teaching experience on the subject, the book is suitable for advanced students and researchers. The Global Crash: Towards a New Global Financial Regime? Author: Leila Simona Talani ISBN: 023024341X The financial crisis hit the global economy unexpectedly from August 2007 producing consequences comparable to the ones experienced in the course of the 1930s. This book pro-

108 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010

vides a comprehensive interdisciplinary account of the events leading to the financial crisis, its institutional causes and consequences, its economic characteristics and its socio-political implications. This book represents a unique opportunity to gather the opinions of established experts on financial markets from different academic disciplines and from a different academic traditions debating over the future of the global financial order. Leading economists are confronted with leading political scientists in an effort to assess the future of global financial stability and to propose solutions to the problems envisaged. This book is essential reading for all interested in macroeconomics, political economy, globalization studies and political science. The Caged Phoenix: Can India Fly? Author: Dipankar Gupta ISBN: 0804771898 Dipankar Gupta, one of India's foremost thinkers on social and economic issues, takes a critical-and controversial-look at the limits of the Indian success story in The Caged Phoenix. Through a fine blend of theory and new evidence on small scale industries, farming, and more, Gupta argues that, despite the promise of


Independence and liberalisation, India continues to remain caged in backwardness. In short, the country's phenomenal growth story has not translated into development. Questioning prevailing culture-based theories— and the academics who perpetuate them—that are used to explain India's poverty and its hampered development, Gupta attempts to "normalize" India, advocating a rigorous rejection of justifications that rely upon cultural otherness and exoticization. He critically examines the reluctance to acknowledge that structural impediments, not cultural factors, deny growth benefits to the majority of Indians, and explores the close link between growth in high technology sectors of the Indian economy on one side and sweat shops and rural stagnation on the other. Making a comparison with the developed West, Gupta underscores the point that affluence can be achieved only after living conditions improve across all social classes. Combining original scholarship with a lively narrative, Gupta debunks widespread myths about why India's democracy has yet to deliver and offers compelling explanations for the paradoxes that exist. Michal Kalecki (Great Thinkers in Economics)

Author: Julio Lopez

ISBN: 0230236014

ISBN: 1403999376

The International Papers in Political Economy (IPPE) series explores the latest developments in political economy. This sixth volume focuses on the theme of the need for and the development of Keynesian economic policies for the 21st century. The volume deals with financial systems and economic development and asks whether we are all Keynesians now. Keynesian growth theory in the 21st century along with economic policies thought to emerge from the theoretical framework that underpins it -always a Keynesian one but adapted to the realities of the 21st century -- are also examined. Essays in this volume also explore the nature and consequences of financialisation as perceived by Keynesians, the conceptualisation of money and the implications for economic policy of the current financial crisis, and the role of banks and the case for public banks. This book offers detailed analysis and informed comment on the type of economic policies that are relevant for the 21st century in the aftermath of the financial crisis and global recession. It is essential reading for all postgraduates and scholars looking for expert discussion and debate of the issues surrounding economic policy issues.

This book examines the life and work of the extraordinary Polish economist, Michal Kalecki. It discusses Kalecki's theory of the capitalist economy, and provides a thorough guided tour through his published works, including his important writings on the economics of underdeveloped countries. Kalecki's ideas received wide international recognition during the period when Keynesianism predominated in the economic landscape. In the early 1930s, Kalecki anticipated many aspects of the principle of effective demand that later John Maynard Keynes put forward in his General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money. This book commemorates Kalecki's originality, and great contribution to economics. The book is co-authored by a former student of Kalecki. It includes original notes taken from Kalecki's courses, which up till now have never been published. This book is indispensable reading for all interested in the history of economic thought.

21st Century Keynesian Economics Author: Philip Arestis, Malcolm Sawyer

109 Political Reflection | June-July-August 2010