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Omer Taspinar

Ömer Taşpınar is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and a professor of national-security strategy at the National Defense University in Washington. He is the author of two books: “Political Islam and Kurdish Nationalism in Turkey” and “Winning Turkey: How America, Europe and Turkey can Revive a Fading Partnership” (with Philip Gordon). His research focuses on the Middle East, Europe, Muslim minorities in the West, radicalization and the global political economy. He is a frequent commentator for major Turkish, American, European and Middle Eastern news outlets.

Articles By Omer Taspinar

How Biden Will Respond to Turkey By Ömer Taşpınar - Dec 10, 2020

How will the incoming Biden administration approach Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey – a former ally that turned increasingly autocratic and disruptive in pursuit of strategic autonomy from Nato? The short answer is very differently than the Trump administration. For reasons to do with his personal financial interests and an apparent affection for autocrats, Donald Trump … Continue reading “How Biden Will Respond to Turkey”

Nagorno-Karabakh: The Turkey-Russia Role in the Azerbaijan-Armenia Conflict By Ömer Taşpınar - Oct 8, 2020

It is now becoming clear that no quick victory will emerge in the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, despite Baku’s modern weaponry and political determination to reconquer Nagorno-Karabakh. The breakaway enclave, legally part of Azerbaijan but controlled by Armenians for the past three decades, has seen frequent military flare-ups. In that sense, this was no “frozen … Continue reading “Nagorno-Karabakh: The Turkey-Russia Role in the Azerbaijan-Armenia Conflict”

Erdogan’s Predicament: Can Populism Survive the Pandemic? By Ömer Taşpınar - May 6, 2020

Populist leaders like Turkey’s strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan are by nature insecure creatures. They govern by demonizing their political rivals and their worst nightmare is to end up in opposition. Given their tenuous relationship with the rule of law, losing power often means losing their freedom, and sometimes much more. They have an insatiable yearning for … Continue reading “Erdogan’s Predicament: Can Populism Survive the Pandemic?”

Erdogan Has Recovered from His Humiliation Over Idlib – But Only Because the Russians Allowed It By Ömer Taşpınar - Mar 9, 2020

It has been a tough month for Turkey’s strong man president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Turkey’s military incursion into Idlib, the last Syrian province still under opposition control, has gone horribly wrong. Air strikes by the Syrian army have killed 34 Turkish servicemen in an attack that obviously had Russia’s backing. Vladimir Putin’s message to Erdogan … Continue reading “Erdogan Has Recovered from His Humiliation Over Idlib – But Only Because the Russians Allowed It”

Syria Is Straining the Marriage of Convenience Between Turkey and Russia  By Ömer Taşpınar - Feb 24, 2020

The problems between Turkey and the United States are well known. But lately, the real tension involving Ankara is on the Turkish-Russian front. This marriage of convenience between the two countries is being sorely tested by Syria and the particularly thorny issue of Idlib, the last stronghold of Syrian rebels.  Yet Idlib is only the … Continue reading “Syria Is Straining the Marriage of Convenience Between Turkey and Russia “