Published On: Fri, Nov 15th, 2019

What benefits did Turkey gain from the talks with Trump at the White House?

Before Turkey’s President started his flight to the USA to meet President Trump, he stated that it would be a trip to realize at a difficult time. When we evaluate what happened in the aftermath of the trip we see that the challenges Turkey faces are still valid and there are no issues resolved in favor of this country. Problems are sort of put on hold for a while longer. We could also say the negotiations between parties went without an accident and thankfully no nightmare scenarios mentioned below came true.

To start off with, economic sanctions Trump uses to threaten Turkey and the Armenian draft bill did not come into effect during Erdogan’s visit, for instance.

As far as S-400 missiles are concerned, this issue remained unsettled again. The US side stressed this was a serious obstacle and should be resolved whereas Erdogan (and Trump) said it could be resolved through mutual talks meaning there was no clear situation reached. Thus, it may have served Erdogan however as he saved some more time before Nato summit and having finalize critical decisions, eventually. On the other hand, as above mentioned issue remains solved, Turkey’s position in the F-35 aircraft project still continues to maintain its uncertain status, naturally.

Another issue had to with extradition the leader of FETÖ (organization that attempted to throw over the government in 201) which Trump did not even mention at all despite Erdogan’s reference during his speech.

It goes without saying one of the most important points was the situation of the YPG in Syria. Regarding this issue Trump clearly showed once again he intended to manage both Turkey and YPG, not to lose either for future use according to the benefits of the USA. That is to say he clearly showed that the USA would not be willing to abandon the YPG and to be on the contrary would continue to stand behind it. The reason has already been clearly voiced several times; The US needs a guard to protect the oil wells.

As for Trump’s insulting letter to Erdogan which had quite an impact in the political arena in Turkey a short while ago, it was not possible to understand if Erdogan returned the letter to Trump (although he said that was the case) and how Trump replied etc. as the US President did not make any references in this regard.

Therefore, when we look at the whole thing from Turkey’s point of view, we cannot easily spot much of a gain except for the postponement of sanctions to be applied to Turkey and the Armenian bill threat.

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