Regional Power Rivalries in the New Eurasia: Russia, Turkey, and Iran

By Alvin Z. Rubinstein; Oles M. Smolansky | Go to book overview

7
Turkey and Central Asia
Reality Comes Calling

Patricia M. Carley

The "discovery," upon the opening-up of the Soviet Union, of more than 60 million Turkic people in the republics of Central Asia unleashed a flurry of debate about the implications for the world's only independent Turkic country at that time: Turkey.1 The discourse about the future of the two regions ranged from the possible reorientation of Turkey's foreign policy eastward in a substantial departure from its general western alignment, to the rise of a Turkic-based grouping of states destined to become a formidable new regional power in the world. This latter speculation caused a considerable stir, with its parallel assertion of the "re-emergence" of "pan-Turkism," an ideology and movement from the late nineteenth century in the Ottoman Empire which sought the political union of the world's Turkic peoples, the majority of whom, outside the Ottoman Empire, lived under Russian tutelage.

Latent pan-Turkist sentiment, some said, lurked beneath the surface of all the Turkic-speaking peoples, making it only a matter of time before Turkey and Central Asia (together with Azerbaijan) formed a federation of some kind based on this Turkic kinship. This development, some even claimed, would evince the reappearance of the Ottoman Empire, albeit in a slightly altered form, as if Central Asia had once been part of that empire (which it had not).2 There were claims to the effect that the main Central Asian languages of Uzbek, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, and Turkmen were mutually intelligible with Turkish, even that they were in fact dialects of Turkish. In

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Regional Power Rivalries in the New Eurasia: Russia, Turkey, and Iran
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • About the Editors And Contributors vii
  • Preface ix
  • Note xii
  • Part I- Old Rivals, New Relationships 1
  • 1: The Russian Federation and Turkey 3
  • 2: Moscow and Tehran The Wary Accommodation 26
  • Part II- Cis and Iran 63
  • 3: Ukraine and Iran 65
  • 4: Azerbaijan and Iran 93
  • 5: Iran and Tajikistan 112
  • Part III- The Turkish Factor 145
  • 6: Iran and Turkey Confrontation Across An Ideological Divide 147
  • 7: Turkey and Central Asia Reality Comes Calling 169
  • Part IV A Russian "Monroe Doctrine" In the Making? 199
  • 8: Russia and Transcaucasia The Case of Nagorno-Karabakh 201
  • 9: Russia and Tajikistan 231
  • 10: The Asian Interior The Geopolitical Pull on Russia 252
  • Conclusion 271
  • Index 279
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