|As we approach the end of the year, it is time to take stock of 2010 and offer some predictions for next year in Turkish-American relations. Overall, 2010 proved to be a challenging year for the Washington-Ankara axis. |
From of the point of view of the Obama administration, the most disappointing part was no doubt Ankara’s Iran policy, culminated with the “no” vote at the United Nations Security Council.
Particularly frustrating for Washington was that the Turkish vote came at a time when all P-5 (permanent five) countries -- including Russia and China -- voted in favor of sanctions against Iran. President Barack Obama reportedly tried to convince Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during a 45-minute phone conversation the night before the vote and pleaded at least for abstention if voting “yes” would not prove feasible. The fact that Turkey opted for a “no” came as a bitter reminder to the Obama administration that on issues of utmost strategic and national security importance to Washington, Turkey could no longer be trusted. As a result, Ankara lost considerable leverage and goodwill in the American capital.