As I was traveling with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his team to St. Petersburg, on the way I kept searching for an answer to questions related to the historic nature of this summit; Russia's current situation and its state of being surrounded, Turkey being under a heavy attack like never before seen in its political history and where all this falls in the Turkey-Russia, Middle East and East-West power equilibrium.
We were weathering such a dire, trying, chaotic and ruthless historical period. Turkey was being subjected to such great attacks and threats, our region was going through such enormous destruction after a century that I am aware how difficult it is to stay standing, to turn toward the future and face all these threats.
Of course, I was aware of what a magnificent message had been given by the unprecedented gathering of 5 million people in Yenikapı and its surroundings last Sunday, and amounting to 10 million people throughout Anatolia simultaneously flowing to the squares. I was aware that they understood the big global-scale showdown and challenged it themselves, what this means in the millennium-old Anatolian history, what it told those who want to turn Turkey into Syria, and this was bolstering my courage.
The necessary response and message was given at Yenikapı that day!
I knew that despite all the evil, all the betrayal and destruction plans devised specifically against us, all the map drafts targeting the region, and even though the forces we have been taking action together since the Cold War era have started to display open enmity, a new political language, political wave is developing and expanding on these lands and that this would change history.
Old files were opened; friendships and enmities had become meaningless. No country could be trusted anymore and we could not depend on any alliance or relationship. Friends and alliances had become a source of threat in the real sense. Not Turkey's but the world's axis had shifted and like every country, Turkey was also protecting itself. The message given in Yenikapı was the declaration of this taking itself under protection, standing on its own feed, discovering its own strength and turning toward such a future.
Atlantic not the only center
I knew these. What was this new pursuit going to be? What kind of relations were we going to build with whom, what kind of steps were we going to take in the economic, political and geopolitical fields? The West, our allies have been occupying us, keeping us under control and continuing their mental tutelage over our Turkey perception in this way for decades. Whenever we make a bold outburst, they swoop at us. Whenever we signal that we will choose our own path, they attack us. July 15 was such an attack and was perpetrated directly by our allies.
If we slightly turn our direction to our surroundings, slightly to Asia, to newly rising countries, if we take a couple of strong steps, they would strike us with terrorism, their Trojan horses like the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), with their economic crisis threats. However, the world no longer consists of the West axis, the Atlantic is no longer the only center. Even though Turkey's political culture and future perspective were determined in that direction, even though out political cadres, military and civil bureaucracy saw the world through their eyes, this country was under threat and this threat was coming directly from them.
We can no longer have an EU goal
July 15, in this sense, was a trauma for us all; we were in a great shock. They were all hiding behind the tanks, behind a terrorist and his intelligence network on the inside, hitting Turkey. We had never before seen anything like it, we were not expecting this much.
After this stage, it has become almost impossible for the EU to build a trust relationship with Turkey. The EU is no longer a goal or project for us. The U.S. has been caught red-handed for the first time in a coup attempt and is reduced to almost nothing in the eyes of an ally country.
Would the meeting between President Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin in St. Petersburg at such a time lead to a change in the map of powers in our region, primarily in Syria? Could it be the signal of a geopolitical change?
How would this meeting be understood and interpreted by the U.S. and EU, which are right at the center of the July 15 coup attempts and the plot to oust Erdoğan with the civil war scenario played out through this attempt?
They are besieging Turkey, step-by-step
Could the closing in, siege operation applied step-by-step for the last three years especially targeting Turkey and the sanction targeting Russia as well as the threats coming from the West border be pushing the two countries to take action together at certain points?
Of course such relations cannot be established in the short term, new relations could not be built in such a short period. But it was a fact that both Turkey and Russia are under threat. The West tried to take Turkey under complete control and keep it as a spare with the FETÖ coup, but failed. Russia was faced with the sanctions and threats from the West, seeking its own ways out and attempting interventions such as the Syria intervention.
Turkey, which trusted the West was facing the West's betrayal and plot on its own border. It became clear on July 15 that creating a crisis in Turkey-Russia ties was part of this big game. Those who planned this crisis executed a project adjusted to besiege, surround and take over Turkey, and this became clear on July 15.
Syrian crisis also hit all three countries
Erdoğan and Putin held that meeting assessing all of these, of course. It is obvious there are serious problems between the two countries. For starters, it is not impossible for the two countries to reach the same point on Syria, but very difficult. Improving economic relations, joint investments, the $100-billion-dollar trade goal are more achievable goals.
Ever since the start, the only solution to the Syrian crisis was the countries in the region. We know that whenever Europe intervenes in a region, there is never a solution there – we saw this in many examples. Turkey-Russia and Iran could solve this. Years later, we are at the same point. If Iran can be convinced, it will be much easier for Russia and Turkey to get closer.
The Syrian crisis brought Turkey to the brink of a great disaster, dragged Russia to a big trap and cut all of Iran's ties with the Islamic world. There seems to be no other more logical way than for the three countries harmed to focus on their own solution. None of the West-axis solution projects are going to bring any benefit to these three countries, and what's more is they will plummet the three countries into serious crises.
Russia and Iran joined the siege too!
The Erdoğan-Putin summit was the world's most important agenda topic this week. All capitals were focused on what the two leaders would discuss and the type of meeting it would be. Everybody was concerned whether there would be a shift of axis in Turkey, whether it would move away from the West axis and get close to Asian powers. The confidence crisis between Turkey and the West, the world-scale geopolitical activity was opening the door to all these possibilities.
The meeting was successful. Both countries were aware of their losses and knew from where the threat is emanating. They were both faced with the threat of destruction. Yet, obviously, it would not and could not be possible to expect radical outcomes from a single meeting. Still, a single meeting was enough to return relations to the point before the downing of the Russian plane in November 2015.
Yet, let us not forget that Russia also cooperated in sieging Turkey. It tried to close Turkey's southern doors together with Iran. It tried to sever its ties with the Sunni Arab world. The North Syria Corridor was a project implemented by the U.S. through the Democratic Union Party (PYD), but Russia and Iran did all they can for the same project and are continuing to do so.
Keeping away from Asia is suicide!
Yenikapı has ordered Turkey to stand on its own feet. It has ordered it to make all the moves of the geopolitical charade, to avoid falling hostage to conventional alliances, to set up its own game in this multi-dimensional complex power showdown. Putting distance between Russia with the fear of the West, keeping away from Asia fearing the U.S. is suicide. But submitting to Russia and China out of anger for the West is also another form of suicide. Of course Turkey is subjected to grave risks in the economic, political and security fields, but it also has great opportunities. The mental blindness in political and military bureaucracy is the greatest threat for our country.
After all this we need to place emphasis on rational relations not only with Russia but also with Asian powers. The world's center of gravity has shifted to Asia and the global hegemony of the Atlantic axis has long collapsed. If we act like these have still not happened, when we wake up one morning we will see NATO tanks in our country. Let the convergence with Russia be the first step of this. But we need to turn our direction a little more toward the East.
Wake up Turkey, this time they are attacking with terrorism
If we are not the big player, we will shrink and this will lead to our destruction. Turkey being small enough to be held hostage in the West axis is the greatest of all dangers. Hence, the convergence with Russia is of great importance for us. If the Syria crisis is solved, then the most important area of intervention aimed at the region will be eliminated.
Do not forget, on July 15 we encountered the greatest attack in the history of the Republic of Turkey. We faced the greatest attack that came from the U.S. and Europe ever since the founding of this country. The people who have been flowing to the squares every night for the “democracy watch” since July 15, the millions who gathered at Yenikapı, and the millions who were at all of the city squares around Turkey on the same day showed us what the greatest strategic goal is. We will lose everything the moment we forget this message.
What will happen now? Very heavy attacks will be starting in reaction to the Petersburg summit, against Erdoğan, against Putin, against the likelihood of solving the Syrian crisis. Those who failed on July 15 are going to strike with terrorism. They will continue the war; they will make Turkey pay a price with terrorist attacks adjusted for civil war, and they will retaliate.
Yesterday, they attacked in Mardin, Diyarbakır and Şırnak. They started again. Those who could not succeed on July 15 have activated the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) jointly with FETÖ. Wake up Turkey, continue the watch!