Summary and Info
Turkish foreign policy faced a paradigmatic transformation in foreign policy as well as domestic politics with respect to mentality, identity, style and rhetoric under Justice and Development Party (JDP-Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi-Ak Party) rule. This study also evaluates Turkey’s Middle East policy within the framework of public diplomacy under JDP governments. The ruling party initiated its Middle Eastern policy by highlighting its Muslim identity. Islamic identity opened space for Turkey in its Middle East policy on one hand, while it built the cultural foundation of racing to the top with a Turkey-inspired Islamic model through the country story rhetoric of the public diplomacy in the Muslim world. This public diplomacy and soft power was the most authentic aspect of the AKP government in foreign policy and implemented successfully between 2003-2011 in general and the soft power momentum of Turkey took place particularly between 2005-2010. However, as of 2011, that is with the Arab Spring process, the relations particularly with Syria came to a point of conflict from the soft power peak and it ended up with the fall of soft power in the Turkish foreign policy.
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