From Bismarck to Merkel

"Turks and Germans loved each other for a long time," Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said during a visit to Berlin in 2018. He was citing the historic words of Germany's first chancellor, Otto von Bismarck, which still seem to determine Berlin's policy on Ankara. We should recognize this reality as we enter a new geopolitical era, without succumbing to sentimentalism and spasmodic reactions.

Germany sees Turkey as belonging to its traditional sphere of influence. It deems that the two countries share a large number of key interests. The way in which the mass influx of refugees/migrants destabilized Germany has left a mark on Chancellor Angela Merkel and her aides.

She believes that Greece may have succeeded in neutralizing Turkey's efforts to weaponize refugees along the Evros border, but she also believes that it will not be able to do so again, especially in...

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