In War-Ravaged Southern Turkey, a Man Searched for His Missing Brother
Sakir Gokalp knew the procedure. His mother was dead and his elderly father couldn’t face the trips to morgue. Plus, he had seen mutilated bodies before. “They cut their noses, they cut their eyes, their mouths — everything,” Gokalp said. “One boy was run over by tanks. His body... Read more
Turkey’s Proxies Attack America’s Allies in Syria
A slither of land sandwiched between the the Kurdish controlled enclaves of Kobane and Afrin in northern Syria is fast becoming the country’s most volatile tinderbox. The small area between the Kurdish cantons is home to a multi-ethnic group of Arabs, Kurds and Turkmen and is, in a sense,... Read more
Why in the World Does Turkey Want an Aircraft Carrier?
Upon overseeing the launch of a domestically-built corvette in July 2017, Turkish Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdogan voiced his country’s goal of building “our own aircraft carriers” as part of Ankara’s efforts to “become independent in the field of defense by 2023.” “We must move even faster,” Erdogan declared. “We... Read more
Turkey Is Quite Eager to Buy Russian Anti-Aircraft Missiles
Turkey is presently in the “final stage” of talks to purchase sophisticated long-range S-400 air defense missiles from Russia the country’s defense minister. Work on the S-400 has reached a final point. “But the final stage does not mean ‘let’s sign a deal tomorrow morning,’” Defense Minister Fikri Işik... Read more
The U.S. Military Expands Its Network of Syrian Airfields
A recent article in the Russian state-owned Sputnik Turkey outlet speculated that the airfield the United States built from scratch in the Syrian-Kurdish Kobani region could become a substitute for Turkey’s Incirlik Air Base. The assertion is likely correct—but only to an extent. The United States has never been able to... Read more
Turkey Eyes a Military Incursion Into Iraq
Turkey announced the official end of its Euphrates Shield incursion into Syria as March 2017 came to a close. But Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has already suggested that future Turkish operations will “not a Syrian dimension, also an Iraqi dimension.” “There are the Tal Afar and... Read more
Why Are Russia and Turkey Holding Joint War Games in the Black Sea?
Russia and Turkey have held a series of joint naval exercises in the Black Sea. The Kremlin’s Black Sea Fleet deployed three ships while the Turks sent two vessels to the exercise, which is called PASSEX. The Russian side deployed the brand new frigate Admiral Grigorovich—armed with long-range Kalibr... Read more
Russia Bombed Its Own Allies in Syria
On March 21, 2017, two major factions of the Free Syrian Army, the Turkistan Islamic Party and the extreme Islamist organization Hayat Tahrir Ash-Sham, or HTS — an offshoot of the former Jabhat An Nusra — together launched an offensive into northwestern Hama in western-central Syria. The resulting battle... Read more
The Turkish Army Has Had These Howitzers For Over 50 Years
In February 2017, Turkish troops brought out tanks, armored personnel carriers, self-propelled artillery and more for an annual winter war game called Kış Tatbikatı. Among the various weapons on display on the snowy training grounds were mobile howitzers that Turkey has had in service for over 50 years. Between 1963... Read more
Turkey’s Arms Industry Expands at Home and Abroad
In January 2017, Turkey hosted British Prime Minister Theresa May. During her visit, among other things, she negotiated a deal worth more than £100 million to help build Turkey’s first indigenous jet fighter, the planned fifth-generation all-weather TFX air superiority jet. The plan would bring together Turkish Aerospace Industries — aka... Read more

Paul Iddon

Contributing writer

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