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Turkey-U.S. Relations in the Changing Transatlantic Context Policy Note / Nilgün Arısan Eralp, Senem Aydın Düzgit, Atila Eralp, E. Fuat Keyman, Çiğdem Nas
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04/02/2021 - Viewed 1355 times



As Joe Biden became the 46th President of the United States, the country entered a new era of restoration both at home and abroad. U.S. foreign policy is not immune to this period of change. America’s re-joining of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Paris Climate Accord immediately after Biden’s inauguration as well as the reactions of top officials in the Biden administration to Alexei Navalny’s arrest in Russia are early testaments to the emerging characteristics of the new U.S. foreign policy under Biden. We argue in this paper that these characteristics will have a defining impact on the shape and nature of transatlantic relations as well as on U.S. relations with Turkey.

U.S. Foreign Policy under the Biden Administration: Tracing the Main Contours of Change

At the most general and paradigmatic level, one can discern five key areas where the Biden presidency will radically differ from, as well as break with, the Trump presidency.

The first area where change is expected concerns the establishment of a new realist-liberal modus vivendi to strengthen American leadership (or hegemony) in world politics. This new framework will fundamentally prioritize security through enhancing America’s political and institutional relations with key global organizations (NATO, EU, UN, WHO, WTO). The realist establishment, which was disturbed by Trump’s incoherent, leader-based, and ineffective foreign policy, now aims at re-establishing American leadership not only at the state level but also at the nexus of the state and institutions. The past four years of the Trump administration have heightened the anxiety of the realist establishment to the extent that they now want to draw lessons from this era and empower global institutions alongside security concerns. The liberal establishment, on the other hand, thinks that the Biden presidency’s multilateral and transatlantic approach can be successfully implemented through closer dialogue with realists in devising policies along the security-democracy nexus.


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This policy note has been prepared by TEPAV, IPM, and IKV.

Tags: Turkey-U.S.,


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