Nonresident Senior Fellow Howard Eissenstat Quoted in The Arab Weekly

On October 15th, POMED Nonresident Senior Fellow Howard Eissenstat spoke with Thomas Seibert of The Arab Weekly about the growing rift between Turkey and the West.

Turkey watchers do not expect a quick return to normalcy. “I think the crisis will get worse before it gets better,” said Howard Eissen­stat, an associate professor at St Lawrence University in New York state and non-resident senior fel­low at the Project on Middle East Democracy. “Disagreements be­tween the US and Turkey were longstanding and serious; trust on both sides is very low,” Eissenstat said via e-mail.

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In the case of the United States, growing pressure to counter what some call Turkey’s aggres­sive stance is especially palpable in Congress, where members have successfully lobbied the Trump administration to cancel a planned deal to sell handguns to Erdogan’s bodyguards. “Congress is very frustrated with Turkey and is likely to demand further action,” Eissen­stat said.

No one expects Erdogan to com­promise, either. Given Turkey’s tradition of anti-Americanism in all political quarters, the Turkish presi­dent is likely to extract political gains from the row with the United States. “The easiest path, political­ly, for Erdogan, is to wrap himself in the flag and wait this out,” Eissen­stat said.

Read the full article here.