As humans, we tend to always want more. This can mean more money, more power, or in this case, more land. As different leaders or presidents take over, different decisions must be made. According to Wikipedia, in 1299, the Ottoman Empire was founded by the Turkish tribal leader Osman. This territory consisted of modern-day cities like Turkey, Greece, Syria, Iraq, Israel, Egypt and many more. Due to the size of the territory, the Ottoman Empire was a threat to the rest of the world. Over time, other countries tried to take over parts of their land. After the Ottoman Empire was defeated in World War I, they separated into different cities. Since the end of this war, not much has changed territorial wise. In 2014, Turkey elected Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the new President of Turkey. Since his election, he has definitely tried to make a difference. His main goal is to reclaim cities that were lost years ago. His goal is to reclaim parts of Iraq, Syria, Armenia, Bulgaria, Georgia, and Macedonia.
Over the past few years, the Turkish people have grown to support Erdogan. They see him as a man of the people. In the past, there have been a few incidents where he has had the opportunity to prove to his people the kind of man that he is. His support increased after the military coup that caused the death of over 250 people. He was seen helping the injured and caring for as many people as he could. His goal has been to give opportunities to the lower class and he has been able to run Turkey into a world power. Turkey is largely made up of Islams. He makes it a priority to protect them which gives him a large following. Erdogan may have made some poor decisions but his people like him. When running a country, trust is very important. In order to make Erdogan happy, Turkey must receive the land that was once taken from the country.
Trying to reclaim the land that was taken years ago seems like a bad idea. The Turkish people will support this action due to their love for their leader. Reclaiming territory usually does not help when making allies. However, from Turkeys standpoint, they probably do not mind. The top export destinations for Turkey are Germany, the United Kingdom, Iraq, Italy, and the United States (Simoes, 2017). If they try to take land from a country that they trade with, they will most likely lose relations with that country. Depending on allies of course. Most likely, reclaiming these cities will not start a war, however there would be consequences. Turkey can also negotiate a deal with their neighboring cities to take control of their land. This path seems like the smarter one. This will help improve relations while gaining the land they want but it will come at a price. Either decision will cause big changes and should be carefully discussed.
Russia and Turkey used to be close allies. Over the years, they were each other’s largest trading partners. In 2015, Turkey shot down a Russian warplane. The plane was near the Syrian border and was warned to turn around but did not follow instructions so they Turks took action. After this incident, the two neighboring countries are not too fond of each other. If Turkey does decide to stretch their territorial boundaries into other countries, Russia will not be supportive of their decisions. Russia is not allies with all of the places Turkey is trying to invade so Turkey will still be able to get some land without having to worry about Russian forces. This is not the only country that Turkey must be aware of.
The United States and Turkey also used to have a strong relationship. However, due to the recent election of President Donald Trump, these relations have changed. Erdogan and the Turkish people do not view American’s positively and have no confidence in President Trump. If Turkey was to try anything on one of America’s allies, they would have to get involved. Currently Trump is trying to fix any problems that they have with Russia. Russia has a very strong military and is a good country to have as an ally. If the U.S. and Russia are on good terms, Turkey will most likely not try to do anything rash.
Erdogan wants the land the was once taken from his country. Regaining this territory could make him believe that he will receive more power. His drive to make his country more powerful is admirable. All great leaders have been known to fight for what they believe in. This is a great opportunity for Erdogan to prove himself to other countries. The future of Turkey could lie in the hands of their new leader. It is important that he thinks long and hard about his future decisions. So far, his decisions have been strictly focused on Turkey. When leading a country, it is important to think about other countries and how to make more allies. The Turkish leader has done poorly on this subject. He has ruined relationships and is planning on ruining more in the near future. Obviously, no one wants to start a war over something like this. Erdogan should focus on his foreign relations before trying something like this. What he wants to do is fine, but he is going about it in the wrong way. Communication is very important when planning to pull off something like this. When dealing with other countries, it is important to know how they communicate so the message is not taken the wrong way. Communication can easily be misinterpreted and must be studied prior to conversations like these. Erdogan will most likely go through with the efforts to expand Turkey’s boundaries. It will be very interesting to see how these actions play out and what path he will take to achieve his goals.