Published On: Mon, Apr 29th, 2013

Is Turkey the real winner of the war in Iraq?

The USA came to Iraq to bring democracy and peace. It took ages before the Americans left the country back home leaving millions of dead people in Iraq.

The question has always been “Has this giant operation been successful to accomplish its mission? Is true democracy and peace established in Iraq, now?”.

The answer is not very encouraging we are afraid as could be figured out judging on the chaos and brutality in the news – to include all those bombings, killings and much more…

Still however the economy has not failed to carry on without a pause, and all those international business giants interested in a market offered by a country that needs to be re-built all over again have grown their appetites to get mouth-watering jobs – infrastructure business to be in the first place.

Turkey with the advantage of being neighbors with Iraq – and thanks to the advanced construction technologic skills possessed by the Turkish construction companies, has spent well worth efforts to make the best of this opportunity and managed to get substantial business from this giant market.

As expressed by international press in a witty manner “USA has won the war, Iraq has won the peace (?) and Turks have won the contracts”.

Actually the beginning of the story was not very smooth for Turkey as it had to confront with the USA by not allowing the deployment of U.S. troops through its territory during the 2003 invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. This has been a big blow to USA-Turkish relations for quite a while – and still is actually, although parties claim otherwise.

On the other hand, Turkey’s relations with Baghdad have grown increasingly bitter to the extent where two countries have exchanged diplomatic notes and much more. Iraq has often slammed Turkey for invloving in Iraq’s internal affairs and likewise. Moreover, Turkey has adopted a new attitude to disturb Iraq by approaching the Kurdish Administration in the north of Iraq which is consşdered to be a threat by the central government of Iraq.

However and in spite of all those negativities the geographic location of Turkey has ruled out all the disadvantages imposed and Turkey as mentioned above as well, has been one the biggest suppliers for the Iraqi market.

To verify this situation its exports to Iraq have in the past decade soared by more than 25 percent a year, reaching $10.8 billion in 2012, making Iraq Ankara’s second-most valuable export market after Germany. While Iran is seen as the most influential external power in Iraq today, even a blind eye could see that Turkey’s presence is more visible than that of any other country in the streets of Baghdad – to include much from malls to furniture stores to pavement bricks bearing Turkish trademark.

The picture for the future does not reflect a different view either and Turkey with the momentum it has gained thanks to the performance of the government in international politics – such as apology from Israel for vessel raid – seems to be quite determined to keep its position as one of the leading suppliers in the Iraqi market.



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