The Research Paper submitted to the Faculty of the International Relations School of Free University in fulfillment of the requirements for the Course in Theories of International Relations
Author: Nikoloz Tekturmanidze
From time immemorial, the Ottoman Empire has been inspired by Islamic values and principles. Since Islam allows for drastic differentiation between radical actions and society, sultans and leading circles have taken advantage of the situation to accumulate their own strength and wealth. The twentieth century turned out to be a turning point when the worldview changed and the population demanded changes. After the First World War, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk entered the political arena in Turkey, who, thanks to radical reforms, was able to turn the country’s future 180 degrees. Western values, imbued with liberalism and mutual respect, have penetrated Turkey’s closed borders and sought to “save” the country. Thanks to a series of reforms, the country began relations with the West that lasted for decades. At the beginning of the XXI century, the country’s politics is still on the Ataturk rails. Since “The Freedom and Development Party” came to power under Erdogan in 2002, it has initially embraced liberal principles, but over time its attitude towards both domestic and foreign policy has changed, raising the question of which side the ruling party chooses – Western or Eastern. Although Turkey is a member of NATO and a candidate for EU membership, with close ties to many Western countries, the current foreign policy suggests that the government and the population are leaning more towards Islamic principles, which directly destroys Ataturk’s legacy.