World War I Led to a Century of Violence in the Middle East - SPIEGEL ONLINE
Instead, post-war Turkish-Iranian relations remained formally cordial but practically sterile. In the two countries founded the Turkish-Iranian Friendship. In Iran the territorially based nationalism that emerged in the nineteenth With the creation of a cohesive independent state in Anatolia, Turkish nationalism largely shed to a nationalist uprising after World War I, and territorially based nationalism the turning point in Egypt's involvement in the Arab nationalist movement. The partition of the Ottoman Empire was a political event that occurred after World War I and the However, the Turkish War of Independence forced the European powers to . During the s and s Iraq, Syria and Egypt moved towards . The Armenian national liberation movement hoped that Armenia could be.
The Armenians also argued that the dominant population of the region was becoming more Armenian as Turkish inhabitants were moving to the western provinces. Boghos Nubarthe president of the Armenian National Delegation, added: Georgia[ edit ] After the fall of the Russian Empire, Georgia became an independent republic and sought to maintain control of Batumi as well as ArdahanArtvinand Oltuthe areas with Muslim Georgian elements, which had been acquired by Russia from the Ottomans in The Ottoman forces occupied the disputed territories by Juneforcing Georgia to sign the Treaty of Batum.
After the demise of the Ottoman power, Georgia regained Ardahan and Artvin from local Muslim militias in and Batum from the British administration of that maritime city in It claimed but never attempted to control Oltu, which was also contested by Armenia.
Soviet Russia and Turkey launched a near-simultaneous attack on Georgia in February—Marchleading to new territorial rearrangements finalized in the Treaty of Karsby which Batumi remained within the borders of now- Soviet Georgiawhile Ardahan and Artvin were recognized as parts of Turkey.
Republic of Turkey[ edit ] See also: The Turkish revolutionaries also suppressed Kurdish attempts to become independent in the s. Before joining the Soviet Unionthe Democratic Republic of Armenia signed the Treaty of Alexandropolon 3 Decemberagreeing to the current border between the two countries, though the Armenian government had already collapsed due to a concurrent Soviet invasion on 2 December.
Afterwards Armenia became an integral part of the Soviet Union. This border was ratified again with the Treaty of Moscowin which the Bolsheviks ceded the already Turkish-occupied provinces of KarsIgdirArdahanand Artvin to Turkey in exchange for the Adjara region with its capital city of Batumi.
Turkey and the newly formed Soviet Union, along with the Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic and Georgian Soviet Socialist Republicratified the Treaty of Kars on 11 Septemberestablishing the north-eastern border of Turkey and bringing peace to the region, despite none of them being internationally recognized at the time. Finally, the Treaty of Lausannesigned informally ended all hostilities and led to the creation of the modern Turkish republic.
Officially Iran and Turkey are careful not to disrupt their more constructive economic relations. However, this has not disguised friction on issues affecting internal state stability and projection of external regional influence.
Turkey has sought effective legal resolution of bilateral disputes. They have not so far resorted to non amicable methods. When a crisis emerged in the spring ofdue to Iran's involvement in Turkish Islamic affairs, bilateral ties took a turn for the worse. Ambassadors were recalled, and Teheran publicly condemned Ankara's decision to ban the veil worn by women at universities.
The reciprocal withdrawal of ambassadors was a deliberate, unfriendly but legal act that had a retaliatory purpose. The tension that deteriorated into a public crisis in reflected a civilian response, which included street demonstrations by Turkish and Iranian Islamists against government interference in daily Islamic matters. The incident also reveals how Islamic issues have increased in intensity and produce tension between the Turkish and Iranian governments, between citizens of the two countries and within the levels of administrative authority above them.
This paper aims at demonstrating the complexity of Turco-Iranian relations both in the sociological level, as seen in thought and behaviour of the citizens of both countries that is a sociological analysisand at the international level, as represented by the governments in their response to bilateral, multilateral relations and new international developments.
Our focus is on the most fundamental developments including the Iranian Islamic revolution ofthe Gulf crisis and post-Gulf war regional arrangements, and the emergence of both Iran and Turkey as key players in Central Asia because of their linguistic, ethnic, religious, cultural and historical ties with the Turkic republics.
The Iranian Islamic revolution has significant sociological implications for the Muslim population of Turkey. The revolution had a dramatic impact on the nascent Turkish Islamist movement: After this sociological analysis, discussion shifts to developments in Turco-Iranian relations in responses to the Gulf crisis and post-Glasnost changes in Central Asia. Although bilateral relations have often been strained, commercial exchanges between the two countries have thrived, particularly during the eight years of the Iran-Iraq war.
Despite persisting uneasiness in their relations, Iran and Turkey have also sought forms of economic cooperation which include neighbouring states.
Partition of the Ottoman Empire
Not long ago, Turco-Iranian relations were strained by the controversy over Turkish interdiction in its waters of a Cypriot registred ship carrying arms en route to Iran from Bulgaria. After the seizure of the freighter while crossing the Bosphorus Strait, an Istanbul Court ordered confiscation of the vessel and her cargo.
During months of legal manoeuvering, the Iranian media recurrently attacked Turkey's secular system and its efforts to expand upon existing cultural ties with the Central Asian Turkic republics. According to an Iranian diplomat interviewed in Istanbul, Iranian citizens used the Friday call to prayer throughout Iran to criticize Turkey for its action against a Muslim neighbour.
The Turkish press reciprocated by criticizing Iran's involvement in international terrorism and its support of Turkey's Kurdish separatists. The Cape Maleas ship incident raised many of the broader and enduring issues and tensions which this paper will examine in religious, economic, and historical context. Culturally, they share not only a common religion that is Islam but also a similar historical past. Both are heirs of great Islamic empires, indeed, rival empires; both, in turn, suffered encroachment by the British and Russian empires in the nineteenth and early twentieth century; after defeat and real or threatened dismemberment, both emerged as modern nations in the aftermath of World War I1.
Leaders in both new nations sought to modernize their countries on the basis of western technology, but their personal backgrounds and the particular national conditions under which they operated led them to adopt different strategies to meet the needs and challenges of twentieth century life, differences which still inform Turkish Iranian relations. Reza Shah, on the other hand, who assumed the Iranian throne inwas a soldier, without education or familiarity with western democratic traditions.
Moreover, the Iran he inherited did not constitute a unified large minority and nomadic populations compounded other internal divisions. While Reza Shah did introduced economic, social and political changes, they were designed to suit him personally rather than Iran's situation; they were not based on a comprehensive national ideology, nor were they supported by a political organization or popular will.
Instead Reza Shah chose to sustain and legitimise his political power by drawing heavily on the authority of Islam and the traditional local power groups, the clergy and the landed aristocracy.
Although Reza Shah was able to subordinate the clergy to the power of the State during his reign, the Iranian people remained intensely devoted to their religious leaders. This visit led to a set of nine diplomatic agreements between the two countries in Besides pledging friendly relations among the signatories this pact guaranteed that no member nation would manipulate or antagonize ethnic minorities living in other member nations in order to develop conflict between the central governments and the tribal powers.
These agreements might have inaugurated an era of close cooperation between Iran and Turkey. Instead, post-war Turkish-Iranian relations remained formally cordial but practically sterile. In the two countries founded the Turkish-Iranian Friendship Association to foster mutual understanding. But these agreements remained mere military and political marriages of convenience. Under Reza Shah's successor, Mohammad Reza Shah, Iran pursued a course of secularization and modernization parallel to, but independent of, Turkey's.
Mohammad Reza Shah did not only intensify and accelerate the process of secularization and modernization but also adopted a highly pro-American foreign policy. In the s, Mohammad Reza Shah of Iran and the Turkish prime minister, Adnan Menderes, the leader of the Democrats who held office untilpromoted relations with the United States, and both relied on the Western bloc. The two leaders met in when Mohammad Reza Shah paid an offical visit to Turkey.
In the s and s Teheran and Ankara shared similar foreign policies, both gave prime importance to the alliance with the U. Neither expressed the intention to take an anti-Western stance. Although anti-Western revolutionary religious opposition emerged in under the leadership of Khomeini in Qum, Reza Shah intensified modernization and cooperation with the U.
Khomeini, having severely intensified his criticism of the Shah and of his pro American policies, was sent into exile in Turkey, accompanied by agents of the Shah's secret police November 4, Khomeini's attacks reached a peak when the Shah granted legal immunity to American personnel for all offences committed on the Iranian soil. He denounced this open violation of Iranian sovereignty and independence. After a brief stay in Ankara, he took up residence in Bursa, where he stayed until October After leaving Turkey Khomeini proceeded to Najaf, one of the Shi 'ite shrines of Iraq, where he spent thirteen years.
Radicals under his leadership overthrew the Shah in According to Khomeini the situation was changing in Turkey and Iraqand particularly among the young as a response to political developments in Iran in the late s.
When he was interviewed by Hamid Algar on December 29in Paris, he emphasized the impact of Iran's Islamic movements on the people of Muslim countries including Turkey who were attracted to the Shi 'ite tradition of rejecting illegitimate authority. First Khomeini explained why the Islamic movements of Iran reached a climax in and were transformed into a revolution on the "threshold of victory". He also mentioned the response of Muslims living in neighbouring countries to the uprising in Iran.
Khomeini gave a detailed explanation of the events taking place in Iran: So the Muslim people joined the protest of their leaders and a massacre ensued. These events were followed by commemorative assemblies forty days after the death of the martyrs; these in turn, produced further martyrs, and further commemorative gatherings" Algar, Later, as a result of this cycle of events, the people gradually lost fear of the police and their inhibitions dissolved, and "they realized they could demonstrate and speak out against the Shah and the government Before finishing his explanation of the events in Iran, Khomeini indicated that the revolutionary uprising would continue until the Shah's regime was destroyed.
Khomeini later discussed the response of Islamic organizations in Arab countries, Pakistan and Turkey to the uprising in Iran. He mentioned the expression of solidarity with the Iranian radicals by individual citizens and groups but the lack support for them from any Muslim government. Khomeini underlined the conflict between the Islamic groups and the people on the one hand, and the public authorities or rulers in the Muslim countries. Khomeini related the rise of Islamic movements in Turkey in the ' s to the ongoing revolutionary Islamic movements in Iran.
According to Khomeini's words in Demands for an Islamic State are now being heard in Turkey as well, partly as a result of what is happening in Iran" Algar, In this context, Khomeini's reference was in part general: This antagonism, which was expressed very violently inresulted from the conflicting political views of these two groups.
On the other hand it is true that radicals in Turkey, either Islamists or Leftists, were influenced by the ongoing anti-western revolutionary movement in Iran and looked upon it as an examplary struggle against "Western imperialism" in the late s. After the Revolution ofKhomeini as a revolutionary and spiritual leader increasingly influenced the Turkish Islamists. Primarily the supporters of the National Salvation Party led by Necmettin Erbakan and many Islamic cemaats associations and tarikats religious orders hailed the Revolution and looked upon it as the victory of Islam over westernization and secularism.
Khomeini inspired and mobilized many Turkish Islamists to undertake political action. His views radicalized their organizations and political discourse. Muslims in Turkey became aware of the the revolutionary function of Islam and developed conviction and self-confidence in their davathe struggle for establishing an Islamic State. A recent survey of Islamist students in Istanbul revealed that Khomeini's religious-political views are taken as a guideline by a significant proportion of them5.
The revolutionary stance created by the Iranian Revolution was a watershed in the evolution of the Turkish Islamist movement which began in the late s. During the early years of the Republic, the circulation of the publications and ideas of Arab thinkers was limited due to the relations with the Middle Eastern countries and secularist measures in Turkey. With the electoral victory of the Democrats inwho took a liberal stance towards religious causes, a number of Islamic associations and tarikats mushroomed.
Relations between the Arab and Turkish ulama were soon established. Some imams, Muftis went to Cairo and Bagdad to study theology Bilici, In the s many were introduced to the ideas of Seyyid Qutb. It also opened divisions between the "Islamic" and "secular" cultures, and highligtened contradictions between the Muslim East and the Christian West. Their religious-political views provided a theory that gave order and direction to the infant Turkish Islamist movement which had been unorganized and diffuse in the s.
In the s, increased pluralism and a highly liberal political environment, which had been created by the Constitution, unleashed several new ideologies confronting the centralist secular elite who promoted Kemalist reformist ideas.
Together with the authoritarian ultranational ist right and the left, Islam emerged as a political ideology in the s. Islamic causes were promoted by various Islamic associations and tarikats. Islamists, however, did not have a distinctive identity; nor did they have a comprehensive ideology or well-defined strategy.
Though Islam as a political ideology was overtly expressed with the foundation of the National Order Party January 26, under the leadership of Necmettin Erbakan, Islamicists did not have complete independence from state apparatus, as they largely have today.
They needed to forge alliances with the right-wing parties in order to survive and to protect their interests in the s, 60s and 70s. For example, a merger between the Nurcus the followers of the Light Movement founded by Said Nursi and the Democratic Party and its successor the Justice Party took place at different times from s onwards. Tarikats lacked a political fabric, and their activities were mainly confined to worship.
This is why the young radicals of the s are highly critical of tarikat activities. Neither have Islamic associations enjoyed complete independence vis-a-vis the state and its religious institutions, despite the existence of small clandestine radical groups, many of which conducted anti-regime activities in Turkey in the s.
With the Iranian Islamic Revolution, however, the Islamist movement has undergone a change. It has disassociated itself from the political parties, traditional Islamic associations and taken a radical form. From the very beginning the Turkish Islamists were excited to see that Islam had a revolutionary character and could guide people in religous and political affairs and alter the regimes based on "man-made" laws. Khomeini's emphasis on the revolutionary character of Islam, the guiding role of ulama in all matters instead of solely in religious affairs, and on ulama's independence from the ruling circles, as well as his call for fighting against all the forces of kufur, such as the separation of religion from politics, provided a new revolutionary outlook to the Turkish Islamist movement.
This profoundly changed the movement's philosophy and direction. The consequences of the Iranian Revolution for Turkish foreign affairs and its impact on Islamist movements in Turkey When Iranian Muslims with the Imam Khomeini at their head overthrew the Shah and his secular, pro-western government to establish a theocratic Islamic Republic, relations with secular, pro-western Turkey were inevitably disturbed.
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After the fall of the Shah, Khomeini was reluctant to pursue relations with Turkey6. Given Turkey's pro-Western stance, he feared that Turkish territory could serve as a stage for Western intervention against the infant Iranian republic.
Even in the Western press, rumours circulated in the early 's that the Shah's army was deployed and exercising in Eastern Anatolia, awaiting the opportunity to overthrow Khomeini's regime7.
Similarly, preoccupation with the threat of U. By the same token, revolutionary Iran seemed to threaten the stability of Turkey, which was itself undergoing an acute, social and political crisis. Many, in Ankara feared the Islamic Revolution might be "exported" to Turkey.
Rumours circulated -again in the Western press -that Iran was organizing and mobilizing Armenian terrorists to create turmoil and religious revolt in Turkey8. Though these incidents never resulted in a diplomatic break between the two countries, their opposing ideologies clearly made Iran and Turkey uneasy neighbours. Yet if the Islamic Revolution inspired mistrust and fear in official Ankara, it also raised the hopes of many Muslim activists in Turkey.
It gave a new model which revolutionized the concept of Islam. In fact, revolutionary-minded Turks-whether Islamist, leftist or ultranational ist-praised Iran's defiance of the West, and some leftist and ultranational ist revolutionaries even defected to the Islamist camp. Ayatollah Khomeini's rise to power inspired particular enthusiasm in the National Salvation Party NSPan Islamicist party formed in under the name of National Order Party to advocate Islamicizing Turkey's cultural life and political institutions.
The leader of the NSP, Erbakan, was extremely outspoken in his support for the new regime in Teheran in The party was dissolved after the military coup of Consequently, Islamists were deprived of a party structure.
This deprivation and the impact of Khomeini's radical Islamic ideas inspired many Islamists to seek non-parliamentary strategies. Young Islamists rejected party politics, ballots and democracy. Rather they adopted the principles of a new strategy: Islam by force and Islam by "education". In this context education includes the provision of Urn Islamic knowledgetraining in all matters and appealing directly to the individual conscience.
The initial tide of enthusiasm for the Iranian Revolution, however, gradually ebbed as the excesses and radicalism of Teheran's policies became apparent. The Iranian model for an Islamic State continued to lose support as old patterns of conflict reasserted themselves between the predominantly Sunni Turkish Muslims and the predominantly Shi 'ite Iranians, conflict which had given rise to protracted wars between the Ottoman and Persian empires in the past.
Some of the Islamist groups which had overwhelmingly supported the Iranian revolution at the beginning became more cautious towards it and urged their followers to calm down and evaluate future developments.
The conflict between those radicals who identify with Iran and their more cautious counterparts divided the Turkish Islamists into two main camps in the early s. Pro-Iranian groups which refused to attend Friday Prayer were labelled cumasizlar "anti-Friday" while the Friday congregations were seen to be the creature of the system, collaborators with the secular state and its institutions. The question of recognizing the revolutionary Iranian ulama as the highest authority the question of beyat was the source of conflicting debates among the Islamists.
A pro-Iranian militant group, the Hizbullahi Muslims, was harshly criticized by the conservative Sunni fundamentalists who do not aim to replace the secular state with a system of Sharia on the grounds that they were the instruments of Teheran's attempt to export Shi' ite revolution to Turkey.
Therefore the radicals called them to wake up, see the "truth" and discover "true Islam". In general, the sources of antagonism between pro and anti-Khomeini groups lay in three main areas throughout the s: The adversarial nature of the conflict and the disunity it caused upset many Islamists who had already begun a search to cure the patient of the mid's. The Girisim-group called the Islamists to come to term with rival groups and to open to other non-Islamist political groups.
He underlined the futility of meaningless discussions over the issues of the Friday Prayer and beyat to Teheran. The call for mutual respect and dialogue, and the efforts toward re-establishing unity among the Islamists produced fruitful results. As a result, antagonistic relations between Islamist factions largely disappeared in the late s.
Nationalism - Middle East - Differential Nationalist Trajectories
Islamists decided to work together to overcome fundamental challenges such as the banning of the veil, the status of Saint-Sofia, etc. As a consequence, the factions collaborated in a number of protests and petitions against the ban on the Turban head scarf in Along with the consolidating efforts of the young Islamicists, the Welfare Party the successor of the National Salvation Party has become more sensitive to the needs of its young followers and has undertaken the role of bringing together the various islamist movements under one roof.
Though the young radicals criticize the "pragmatic" discourse of the Welfare Party, that is, its promises of an improved economic situation, prosperity and social welfare, and its mass-party appeal rather than a well-defined ideology, they still support the party.
They donated personal possessions such as watches gold jewelry and were involved in campaigning before the general election in October The conflict between pro and anti-Teheran groups remains unresolved.
The radical Ibda group harshly criticizes Shi'ite radicalism and Islamists who are loyal to Teheran. The Ibda aims to organize radical Muslims independent of Iran.
In their publication, Taraf "The Side", FebruaryIbda accused the pro-Iranian groups of being instruments of the Shi'ite expansionist aims. Since the early 's, the mainstream Islamic forces in Turkey have been supporting Sunni fundamentalism promoted by Saudi Arabia as a mean of offseting Shi'ite radicalism. Increasing numbers of small, clandestine, radical Islamist groups -a small minority within the whole Islamic movement -maintained their support for the Iranian revolution and advocated a revolutionary strategy in order to replace the secular regime with an Islamic state.
Though a revolution along Iranian lines is highly unlikely in Turkey, Teheran continues to influence Islamist movements there both through the the West and Islam are broadcast in Turkey continuously through two major Turkish language programmes on the state-controlled Iranian radio.
In addition, the Iranian government broadcasts several other programmes on Islam, politics and society, which can be received in Eastern Turkey. Iranian radio even increased its criticism of Turkey inand the issue of anti-Turkish programmes on Iranian radio was discussed by the former Turkish Foreign Minister, Ali Bozer, on his official visit to Teheran in July Neither has Iran hesitated to use its diplomatic presence in Turkey to support Islamic causes.
The Iranian ambassador participated in an anti-Israeli rallyand other Iranian diplomats encouraged Turkish imams to protest against Salman Rushdie Iranian Cultural Centres in several Turkish cities are notorious as centers of Islamic activity, and Iranian officials working there as well as in the Iranian consulates in Istanbul, Trabzon and Erzurum have distributed a tremendous number of Khomeini's works translated into Turkish, along with tapes of fundamentalist sermons by Turkish mullahs being trained in Iran Through this propaganda Iran casts doubts on the Muslim nature of Turkey as a whole and has created grave strain in their diplomatic relations.
A major example of Iran's influence on and support of Islamic movements in Turkey was the so-called Turban issue which upset Turkish-Iranian relations in March When Turkey's Constitutional Court decided to revoke a parliamentary bill which permitted female students to wear the Turban at university, thousands of young women in Iranian style black chadors marched in protest in Istanbul, Ankara and several other cities.
In Teheran Iranian women demonstrated in support of their Turkish sisters, and Iranian leaders not only criticized the Turkish court's decision but also asked that the ban on the turban be lifted Tension between the two countries reached such a point that Ankara recalled its ambassador in Teheran for consultation.
Iran retaliated immediately, and the Iranian Ambassador left Turkey. Although the Turkish government considers Iran's support for Islamic movements in Turkey an interference in its domestic affairs, Iran is acting in accordance with its constitution. Article 3 of the Iranian constitution stipulates that the government of Iran must adopt "a foreign policy based upon Islamic criteria, brotherly commitments to all Muslims and unsparing protection for the under-privileged and deprived peoples of the world".