Misplaced priorities: Turkish assessments of U.S. Power
June 17, 2011
Turkish elites and the general public retain a wary respect for American economic and hard power but remain dubious that this enormous capacity will be used in ways that will advance Turkish regional and global interests. Many Turks remain particularly concerned that the United States will leave Iraq unstable and provoke a military confrontation with Iran—with damaging consequences for Turkey’s security and prosperity. The appeal of U.S. political ideas, business practices, culture, and scientific and technological advances has declined dramatically among both elites and the public in Turkey since 2001, largely as a consequence of discontent with U.S. policies toward terrorism, Iraq, Iran, and democracy promotion. While the Turkish government still values the U.S. and Allied defense commitments codified in the North Atlantic Treaty, elite and public perceptions in Turkey of NATO’s importance to the country’s security have also dropped sharply over the last decade.