Furthermore, Turkish support for Operation Provide Comfort has weakened considerably.
Clearly, Ankara and Washington do not see eye to eye on some issues, but it is still true that there is a considerable convergence of interests between the two countries. Turkey remains a stable, pro- Western state in an unstable region. The United States is promoting Turkey, with its secularism and parliamentary democracy, as a role model for the newly independent Turkic states in Central Asia. Moreover, the United States and Europe expect Turkey to play a pivotal and stabilizing role in the precarious Balkans and the Caucasus. For their part, the Turkish leaders still assign the highest priority to maintaining close ties with the West, even as the prospect of Turkish entry into the European Community becomes more uncertain. While many Turks believe that their country has incurred more costs than derived benefits for its role during the Gulf crisis, the Demirel government, which assumed office after the Gulf War, is essentially following the same path as his predecessor. This is a vindication of Ozal's political vision.