How the Turkic world is experiencing a resurgence after decades of stagnation - SELÇUK TÜRKYILMAZ

How the Turkic world is experiencing a resurgence after decades of stagnation

Turkic states gained their independence following the fall of the Soviet Union, but will they be able to carry on their presence into the future? There is no doubt that they will need to gather strength in order to achieve this. This gives rise to a second question: As they carry on their presence into the future, will they remain open to outside interventions, or will they be able to amass power? We can add more questions, but these will have to give us the chance to review the experience from the last few centuries. Note that this is not about a critical perspective. It is very clear that this concept corresponds to a passive attitude, and its contents are determined by orientalists. We also need to determine that this passive attitude reflects a Eurocentric view. This thus resulted in a strange alienation model like, “we need to look for where we went wrong.” Yet, present-day developments show that we are living in an extremely dynamic era, and we are not in a simulation in which the last scene is already planned and written. It can be said that events such as the Second Karabakh War and the Organization of Turkic States, which made a great impact recently, resonated in a vast area. It is almost impossible to grasp such major events through a passive perspective. 


When the Soviet Union collapsed, the Islamic region experienced a new invasion and occupation period. In the new era that began with Iraq’s invasion, the Islamic countries surrounding the Mediterranean were weakened, and the focus was turned on Turkic countries. Elements such as the horror of invasion and occupation, which facilitated the U.S. and west European countries’ advances and power gain in the Turkic region, were kept out of sight. The events of the last two centuries need to be discussed together with such facilitating elements. The elements that had a role in the U.S. and west European countries gaining power again in our region, particularly after the 1990s, need special focus. Dependent organizations such as the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), were elements that facilitated the U.S. and west European countries' advance in the Turkestan region. The fact that the Armenian invasion of Nagorno-Karabakh continued for more than three decades can only be explained through U.S. and European support. The existence of problematic areas made our region vulnerable to outside interventions. As dependent organizations had free reign within, it became harder to gain power and carry on presence into the future. 

Who knows whether there will be any internal analysis of the Ukraine War, but the developments signal the desire for a similar disaster to happen in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. Though dependent organizations infiltrated the Turkestan region after the Soviet’s fall, unlike other countries, Uzbekistan showed an early reaction. It is clear that they have limited influence in Kazakstan as well. The establishment process of the Organization of Turkic States following Nagorno-Karabakh's rescue from invasion points to a new understanding. Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan’s development of relations with Türkiye show this as well. Additionally, the steps Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan are taking toward developing relations between themselves show that the mentality that gave rise to the Organization of Turkic States is turning into a common perspective. Based on this, it can be said that dependent organizations are starting to lose their influence in Turkic states. Had this not been the case, they would have achieved their objective through instant directions. They failed to make us surrender because they had no influence deep within. The solidarity between Türkiye and Azerbaijan, and the struggle to form a new axis led to uncalculated results besides Nagorno-Karabakh's liberation from invasion. 

The “Big Game,” which left its mark on the 19th century, was a fight to gain sovereignty over the Turkestan region. The British and Russians had won, and China had established sovereignty over East Turkestan. It can be said that in terms of the Turkic region, this period continued until the 1990s. In this respect, the decolonization period in the Caucasus and Turkestan started in the 1990s. During this period, the U.S. and western European states wanted to establish reign over the Turkic region through proxies. This meant the start of a new “big game” era. A new era started on the night of July 15, 2016, as well, when the Türkiye-based dependent organizations faced defeat. Hence, it won’t be possible to understand Turkic states’ determination post-colonialism to carry on their presence into the future in a powerful state through the “Where did we go wrong?” passivity.  


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