The process that started with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine wreaked havoc on the world’s economy and political balances – and continues to do so. Both Russia and Ukraine are the world’s granaries. The further deepening of the war between these two countries caused economic crises in both the world and our country similar to the one in 1929-1930. Inflation hit the roof, interest is out of control, people’s buying power declined, and the distinction between classes further grew.
Humanity has been released after two years of covid imprisonment, yet the state of the economy struck another heavy blow.
NEW GLOBAL CRISIS FAST APPROACHING
Though humanity has been released from covid imprisonment, they are not yet fully free. They were suddenly faced with a world that is crashing in multiple ways and that is threatening their freedoms.
The economy in Turkey was also deeply affected by this global trauma. The rich became wealthier, while the needy became even poorer. The middle class is almost completely destroyed. This may cause alarm bells to ring regarding social peace. It is critical that the government pays attention, particularly to the problems of the low-income segment, for whom life is becoming impossible, in order to maintain the peace of our country.
While we feel the global economic crisis caused by the pandemic as a nation, we are also experiencing the brightest era in foreign policy in the last two decades, or perhaps in Republican history. Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu is leading Turkey’s said breakthrough in foreign policy with his experience, knowledge, and brave statesmanship.
When the Russia-Ukraine war broke out, the opposition parties laughed and mocked demands for Turkey to undertake the role of mediator. Yet, foreign policy is a national matter, and the success or failure achieved here should be evaluated in this respect.
TURKEY WILL RISE AGAIN TO CENTRAL COUNTRY STATUS
Turkey made a diplomatic move in the first week of the war that would draw all the attention. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held meetings with about 30 state or government leaders within a week. There was one picture among these meetings that showed why Turkey needs to be a center country again, and that it could be a center country: All of the countries involved, primarily Russian and Ukrainian representatives, were gathered around a table in Istanbul. When President Erdoğan entered the room, they all gave him a standing ovation.
This is not a simple event.
This process is ongoing and will continue.
Turkey being a center country came up during NATO meetings as well. Turkey left its mark for the first time at a NATO meeting: When it prevented Sweden and Finland’s NATO membership based on the grounds that the two countries aid and abet the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) terrorist organization, all eyes turned on us.
President Erdoğan is holding consecutive meetings with U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin simultaneously. This is difficult to do under these circumstances and in this chaotic global conjuncture, yet it is a very valuable position. We are acting as mediator today, and tomorrow we will hopefully rise again to major player status.
There’s no need to extend the list.
We see that Turkey is building deep and established relations with China as well. These relations may play a role in preventing the Chinese oppression in East Turkestan, even if to a certain extent. China really needs Turkey, and this need will further increase in the upcoming period.
Though the West is in open or covert alliance with Russia in many fields, they see Russia’s attack on Ukraine as an opportunity to break Russia’s back. Let alone, the U.S. and the U.K. used a lot of provocation to get Russia to attack Ukraine – despite Europe’s, and especially Germany and France’s objections.
Lastly, an important deal was signed with Russia and Ukraine in Istanbul towards solving the world’s grain crisis. All the world leaders personally thanked Erdoğan by calling him, sending him messages, or publishing statements.
Turkey’s opposition parties were the only ones who didn’t, who couldn’t see this.
Yet, Turkey is currently one of the few countries that can rise to the position of a central country once again and change the course of history.
As long as we know how to unite within.
As long as we focus on our major commons.
As long as we are in that same spirit that got us into history and allowed us to change the course of history, and see that this is not possible until we raise new leaders, influencers, and scholars who will pave the way for us, and start sowing the seeds of leading generations that will launch a long-term, radical, and powerful education mobilization.
That is when Turkey will rise to center country status and change the course of history.