Turkic Republics Since Inde-pendence: Towards A Common Future
During the Cold War, the structure of the bipolar international system, which was based on static polarization, prevented Central Asian countries from exerting their remarkable historical and geographical influences on international politics. However, the dissolution of the bipolar world-system and the collapse of the Soviet Union have radically changed the geopolitical structure of Central Asia in respect of the distribution of power in the international as well as the Eurasian geopolitical systems. To assess the period since the independence of the Turkic republics, one must consider three great transformations at three different levels.
These are the geo-political, geo-cultural and geo-economic transformations that have been taking place within the region. Geopolitical transformation concerns the changes in the region’s status in world poli-tics after the Cold War. e geo-cultural transformation is tied to the historical transformation and cultural awakening, while the geo-economic transformation has been dependent on the changing demographic as well as economic dynamics of the region. Within the context of these three important parameters influx, Central Asia has emerged as a new strategic space in the international system, undergoing a serious transformation. These transformations have had a severe impact on three major geographical regions, namely, the Balkans, Eastern Europe, and Central Asia and the Caucasus. Taking the historical systemic transfor-mations into consideration, Turkish policymakers have closely followed the developments in the sur-rounding regions, to which they have attached special importance, since they are likely to have a lasting impact on Turkey and its future orientation. Turkey’s involvement in the region seeks to ensure that there will be a smooth transition and that the developments will move in the right direction.