Relations of the United States with the world and Turkey under Biden’s presidency
Hakan Akbaş – GJC Advisory Board Member
How Did Biden Win?
46 in the United States. President Biden, with more than 80 million votes he received from voters, became the most-voted leader in the country’s history. He received 10 million more votes than Trump and won 32% more delegates. For the first time in the country’s history, turnout in an election exceeded 60 percent, setting a record. He was elected the oldest president of the United States and the first female black vice president.
So what has happened that Biden, 78, has been able to mobilize young people even more than Obama, who at 47 is the youngest president-elect? How Did Trump, the poster politician of authoritarian politics in the world, create chaos with his polarizing style, lose the election differently despite all the blessings of being in power? What happened when election donations to Biden in the final months of the election race doubled to President Trump’s?
The Democrats, led by Biden, had a game plan from the start in the presidential race:
- Be the glue of the opposition, don’t let the Coalition fire
- Get your campaign strategy, platform and message right, touch the heart and mind of the voter.
- Mobilize voters, but don’t pour them into the street, send them to the ballot box
Older generation candidate Joe Biden has been divided by a new generation campaign, digitally tapping every voter in a country in the middle of a pandemic that will see a hundred years of protests in chaos, giving hope for the future. Biden’s victory gave important clues to both hope and democracy in a world where authoritarian populism has recently taken root.
With Biden, the balance is changing not only within the United States, but also for the world, and there will be repercussions for that change. Biden appointed Anthony Blinken as secretary of state, our colleague Linda Thomas-Greenfield of the Albright Stonebirdle group as Permanent Representative to the UN, and Katherine Tai as US Trade Representative. Although the experienced, pragmatic centrist new team worked with Biden during the Obama era, there will be no going back to a new Obama era. Because the United States and the world have changed a lot.
The foreseeable policymaking process will return in strong alliances and relations with NATO and the EU. For Washington, which has lost its most important ally in the EU post-Brexit, it was very important for America to have Britain in the European Union. UK relations with Biden will be restored after Brexit.
In the Middle East, we think that a more balanced policy will come back, in which Trump’s son-in-law’s Middle East plan will be trashed. For example, one of the first things Biden will do will be to return to the P5+1 nuclear deal or even start the process of normalizing relations with Tehran. With Trump, the U.S. has withdrew unilaterally from the nuclear deal table, and now it will be back again. Therefore, a less cornered, less combative Iran will favor everyone in the region, including Turkey.
On the other hand, let’s not forget that Biden was a Cold War-era politician. So, from now on, Putin’s job will be much more difficult. Putin had already congratulated Biden only on December 16, when the official decision was announced, at the latest. When we think of the Iran-China Russia triangle, America’s primary enemy in the new era, it will be “Russia.” So we expect Biden to go further on Russia. Putin is also aware of this, which is why, after the initial results were announced, Biden’s son, Hunter, said: “We have not been able to determine that he has committed crimes in Ukraine or in Russia.” “Where has he been to this day?” The question comes to mind, doesn’t it?
The Trump-era Cold War in relations with China will continue. The issue of China is now a state policy for the United States. 1 applied against China. as the phase-out tariffs continue, the Biden administration may bring in new ones. Competition between the two giants in technology, finance, geopolitics and the military will continue.
How will Turkey’s relations with Biden be?
In the Trump era, Turkish-American relations have gone from personal to personal. So the personal relationship between President Erdogan and Donald Trump actually set the agenda. Let’s look at what Turkey has received in the four years that Trump was president. Fatah leader Fethullah Gulen was not extradited, the events of 1915 were recognized as genocide, and no president has made such a statement in the past. Close relations were established with the Greek and Armenian Lobby. When Trump took office, his first job was to ban Muslims, Muslim 6 states, from entering the country.
Although Turkey paid $ 1.25 billion for buying the S400s, its F35s were not delivered. Trump wrote a letter to President Erdogan, saying in quotation marks, “don’t be stupid, let’s get along.” He said that such a thing had never been seen in the state. And you remember about Reverend Brunson. The priest and Trump, who were rescued from Turkey by Muslims and taken on a plane, performed a religious ritual at the White House, didn’t they? At that time, the dollar jumped from us $ 5 to us $ 7.21, Turkey took off before advantageous customs tariffs, Turkey put arbitrary additional tariffs on aluminum, iron and steel.
The terrorist head of the YPG took Mazlum as an interlocutor, gave military support, declared him an ally. He declared Jerusalem the capital, moved his embassy there, isolated Palestine in the Middle East with his son-in-law Kushner’s peace plan of the century, and laid out Netanyahu’s government. “I will destroy the Turkish economy, and if you attack our ally, the Kurds, I will suspend your membership in NATO.” he threatened me.
Biden is an experienced politician in foreign policy who knows Cyprus very well on the Eastern Mediterranean side, so if America can come back to a more neutral place in the world as before, for example, the Greek and Turkish sides in Cyprus can sit on the table and put a plan on the table in the Eastern Mediterranean, including Turkey. From Turkey’s point of view, this will also be useful.
In the last three years of the second term of Obama’s presidency, Biden was an active figure in one –on-one U.S.-Turkey relations with President Erdogan in the corporate structure. Remember, ” is the European Union a Christian club? If not, it should make Turkey a full member.” Biden said at the time. These words were also met with great appreciation by President Erdogan. Biden will also be on Turkey’s side at the point of relations with the EU.
The most recent defense budget for 2021 was passed in the Senate. Here, it is envisaged that the CAATSA sanction will be imposed on Ankara within 30 days due to the S400 Russian air defense missiles purchased against Turkey on July 12, 2019. As I wrote this article, US Secretary of State Pompeo announced the first phase of sanctions on the head of the Turkish Defense Industry and his team. In a deliberately ambiguous line, the United States proposes a ban on all licensed exports and approvals to the SSB. These sanctions, which Trump has approved, are a crisis in Turkish-American relations for his rival Biden, who will take office on January 20, 2021. I also think that the new US administration will strive together with President Erdogan to find a new ‘win-win’ formula, without pushing Ankara, which is of high strategic importance to the US, further into the lap of Russia, the CAATSA sanctions imposed on a NATO member and US ally for the first time. An easy solution is difficult due to declining mutual trust between the two countries, and realpolitik based on sometimes conflicting national interests. In terms of the defense industry, the United States does not want the S400s received by a NATO ally to set a precedent in the world. Turkey, on the other hand, will wait for Washington to take an unconditional first step. Because Patriot missiles, which were not even given conditionally, were left alone by NATO member Turkey in the jet plane crisis with Russia, the July 15 coup attempt and the failure to deliver F35 aircraft, although it was a founding member and paid $1.250 billion, had already opened wounds in bilateral relations. But it seems unlikely that Biden, who has just taken over, will take an unconditional first step despite Congress.
What to do to improve Turkey-US relations?
Biden won, and Turkey has to work with the Biden government for the next four years. Moreover, with the new administration, Ankara enters the new year with the S400 sanctions crisis. According to Ankara’s steps, more severe new sanctions may be introduced in addition to the sanctions, which will remain in force for at least a year. Again, if the Senate passes to Democrats on January 5, this time additional sanctions pressure will make Ankara-Washington relations even more difficult in 2021. The European Union summit on the eastern Mediterranean with the administration to coordinate the sanction package Biden March 2021, March 2021 and of course to Halkbank postponed case (unless there is a last minute development) is expected to be a multibillion dollar penalty.
The agenda is difficult, the problems between the two countries have grown for years. States should not determine their relationships through people and families. Realistic and long-term policies should be produced based on Turkey’s interests. Now the era of setting an agenda in a person-oriented way, getting results, is over. While Turkey has bypassed the House and Senate over the past four years, we must understand that it is not a coincidence that Trump has spent just a month before his break putting it on the defense budget, which Congress has pushed for.
Together with Biden’s presidency, an institutional bilateral relationship will be pursued through multi-stakeholder diplomacy and consultations over predictable policies. Biden’s vast experience in foreign policy and President Erdogan’s close relationship are a useful starting point. Ankara has already started building a new team to work with the new administration. Our Ambassador to Japan, who trained and lived in the United States, was appointed to the U.S. embassy in Turkey. In all relations with the United States, the United States should receive a team of experienced core and consultants who know the world of politics, culture, art and business. Turkish-friendly Americans and Turkish disaporas in the United States should be revived without wasting time. Turkey should start a comprehensive influence-influence campaign to repair Turkey’s Image by organizing from states and even cities on a Seantor basis in the Senate and House of Representatives. In the US, lobbying firms should be selected on merit and their recommendations should be listened to. A $ 50 to $ 100 million annual lobbying fund would have only one chairman.. Because we’re taking our U.S. policy only through the Trump family and the White House, the turkey brand is very toxic in Washington right now, so it’s going to be hard for us to get it back to the way it was.