Foreign Policy and Self-image

National self-images are always affects the States’ foreign policy decision process. Turkey has variable self-images in the eyes of Turkish citizens. Turks are, Traditional, Patriotic and Lone Wolf are just three of them and i am going to explain why these are the most important ones.

Traditional, Patriotic and Lone wolf; these three are the most prominent national self-images of Turkey. These are important because it comes from the base to the head of Turkish society and fundamental beliefs and customs of citizens. When these are decided, feelings and observations are prominent, because these are the general reflection of Turks.

  • Traditional is important, because a state wants to have something good for the future; they have to be care about their history by using their traditions, because traditions are the key concepts of being a state and having a strong society. You cannot exceed the traditional borders. For example in Turkey, Bayrams are very important; because these Bayram days are the one of the factors that holds society together. In fact, it refers to family relationships and regulates the society. Also for the government side, leaders announce general good wishes and peace messages to their people; so it’s again holds the people together.
  • Patriotic is important, because patriotism is the most important thing for a society. Patriotism makes people strong and survival. Actually, people will feel better with their patriotic feelings, also emotionally patriotism makes them relief. Turks are soldier-nation citizens and our ancestors were always in a war to defend themselves and their countries. It is the reason for patriotism; because state and country are comes first for the Turkish people.
  • For the “Lone Wolf” image (Türkün, Türkten başka dostu yok), it shows that do not believe that anybody in the world, because it comes from the history. For example in World War I and before Independence War, Arabs cheated Turks and fought with Britons in Northern Africa. Actually we can say that it is a kind of paranoia; because everything is not always the same. If you do not believe anyone, you will be isolated from the world but you can feel more secure.

Some of the national self-images are affects the foreign policy of Turkey, for example in Karabag (Azeri-Armenian) issue, we could say that policy shaped according to the Pan-Turkist and traditions. Azerbaijan is our brother and we are sharing same culture, nearly the same language and etc… We must! Defend the other Turks right every international area. OR the Cyprus issue again it is based on Pan-Turkist and Peace lover images, the Cypriots were tortured Turkish Cypriots and Turkey had intervened to Cyprus Island.


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