tjir_v1n3ish01 - An Analysis of the Turkish-Greek Relations...

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Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol.1, No.3, Fall 2002 116 An Analysis of the Turkish-Greek Relations from Greek ‘Self’ and Turkish ‘Other’ Perspective: Causes of Antagonism and Preconditions for Better Relationships Hüseyin ISIKSAL* Many would suggest that Turkish-Greek relations have entered on a new phase in recent years in the post-Cold War era. Nevertheless, questions are being asked about how traditional and ingredient antagonisms along with clash of interests between two countries can be redefined to accommodate the causes of failures and what are the sorts of issues that need to be addressed as the preconditions for better relationships? The contention of this paper is that there is no direct hostility or antagonisms between the two nations. Instead, identities has been shaped and constructed in accordance with regime benefits. Consequently, political culture and perceptions of states as understood in terms of norms, values and foreign policy orientations, proclaim expressive totality over identity since the society is subordinated to the state. Accordingly, Turkish-Greek antagonism rooted to the historical past and was shaped by the current implications compatible with the real world issues. Therefore it needs broad analysis differing from past to present. Departing from this statement, initially I should provide a brief overview of historical background and its contribution to the Turkish-Greek antagonism. The chronological structure and brief reference to history aims at retaining analytical cogency and descriptive relevancy as an explanation of what has come before and after. Since the scope is enormous and the space is limited, I emphasize on the
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Alternatives: Turkish Journal of International Relations, Vol.1, No.3, Fall 2002 117 independence of Greece and post independence period along with its consequences and implications in Turkish-Greek relations. For this section, simply it would be put forward that inducement of capitalist mode of relations have changed Greek perceptions about Turks and strengthened their 'European' identity objectives that are at the core of the antagonism between two states. Understanding Turkish-Greek relations requires a complex analysis that should connect the past to the present. By keeping this complexity in mind, in the next section I have tried to provide with a theoretical framework for analyzing the causes of antagonism from the perspective of Greek ‘Self’ and Turkish ‘Other’ image identities. It is benefitable to stress that this paper will not present a detailed expression of internal issues and dynamics of the Turkish- Greek antagonism from the traditional military/geopolitical perspective. Instead, my concern and examination based on psychological, identical, and political aspects of the Turkish-Greek
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tjir_v1n3ish01 - An Analysis of the Turkish-Greek Relations...

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