Turkish Public Opinion Toward the United States

Nasuh Uslu, Metin Toprak, Ibrahim Dalmis, Ertan Aydin

MERIA, Vol.9, No.3, September 2005
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Turkey is a traditional ally of the United States, however, certain events, notably Washington’s 2003 military intervention in Iraq and the Turkish response to this, have soured Turkish-American relations. Based on opinion polls, this article analyzes and explains the Turkish people’s perceptions of the United States during the period between December 2002 and September 2003. The Turkish were displeased by what they saw as an American attitude of pursuing unilateral policies aimed solely at protecting American interests. The Turkish people believed that the U.S. decision on Iraq was taken without regard for Turkey’s national interests or bilateral relations. In their eyes, the American intervention, and Turkey’s possible participation in it, would be harmful for Turkey, especially in the context of the Kurdish question. Therefore, it was not surprising that the Turkish nation opposed supporting the Americans in Iraq.
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