In a constantly changing environment, the outcome of any battle might be also based on historical events. A victory or defeat may have unprecedented consequences that are difficult to estimate and impossible to manage but produce long-lasting syndromes.
Since the end of the Cold War, numerous foreign policy experts have faced the underlying particularities and uncertainties of the emerging new world order. But after the latest Mediterranean and Asian events, things have become increasingly urgent. Many countries are trying to find a new meaning in their political identity and, in particular, in their future role in world politics.
But continue to question where they belong now. Is there a future in Europe or Asia, or is it more complicated than that? Countries are skeptical as to what role to play. Connecting the two geopolitical regions or changing their political stigmatization?
Countries dedicated to counteracting Russia's power in the Eastern Mediterranean follow geostrategic constraints that strengthen their behaviour and political strategy. A difficult role to play because historical conflicts in the area suggest problematic relationships.
However, recent developments in Afghanistan provide opportunities to broaden the relationship with the East. Surprisingly, the West seems to propose Turkey as an intermediary for finding ways to communicate with the Taliban. But not unexpected because the Taliban support stronger relations with Turkey, underlining the incomparable status of friendship and the need for the Taliban to work with Turkey. The Turks offer their Ottoman experience as a new indicator in the role to play.
But the question is why Turkey rushed to support the Taliban and why the Taliban said we would be different. What did Turkey promise the Taliban and what the reward will be?
The answer to this has a name: the Sèvres syndrome.
Sevres syndrome refers to an extended series of psychiatric syndromes in Turkey leading to a popular belief that some forces outside the country plan to break it up or divide it. Within the syndrome, it is implicit or indicated that Western forces are responsible for it. Others believe that these forces conspire to weaken and divide Turkey. The Turkish historian Taner Akçam describes this syndrome as an ongoing perception that "there are forces which continually seek to disperse and destroy us, and it is necessary to defend the state against this danger." The term comes from the Treaty of Sèvres of the 1920s that partitioned the Ottoman Empire. for the Turks, the Treaty of Sèvres symbolizes the liquidation of the Ottoman Empire and the breakup of their country by external forces. Danish political scientist Dietrich Jung asserts that the syndrome remains a significant determinant of Turkish foreign policy.
We know that a syndrome is a set of medical signs and symptoms that are most likely correlated between them. In our case, we are dealing with a geopolitical syndrome explained by a variety of psychiatric syndromes often called psychopathological syndromes.
This variety of syndrome is used in modern clinical practice and outlined in the psychiatric literature in detail (obsessive syndrome, maniac syndrome, depression syndrome, delusional syndrome, hysterical syndrome, delusional syndrome, and many more). But remember that when a syndrome is associated with a certain cause, it becomes a disease. So from a geopolitical point of view, the question is what constitutes a societal illness?
We are ready now to examine the situation in Afghanistan under the light of a syndrome. But there is one thing missing: the origins.
One should not forget that the Turks come from the Mongolian steppes. They were nomadic tribes, formerly hard, destined to conquer or loot the advanced European territories. It is thus logical that the two peoples share the same Turko-Mongol tradition. Turkey's relations with Mongolia are best described by Ambassador to Mongolia Ahmet Yazal. "We have historical, cultural and social relations that date back to 2000 years ago. We can do many things to ensure that this friendship will take us further". This explains why Turkey and Mongolia have deepened their cooperation as a result of the two countries' long-standing relations. Considering this relationship, we can begin to explain the Turkish approach to the Taliban in Afghanistan.
The Taliban is also well aware of the American power in their country and how they were driven out of power two decades ago. They now fear that their new position as Afghan leaders will be at risk, seeking ways to blind or deceive the West about their true intentions. For this reason, they intend to use deceptive measures exactly like Turkey has done in the past with the hope that the Taliban will follow their secret Islamic agenda.
This is why Ankara presented itself through the Sèvres syndrome as the solution to the problems of the Taliban. This is the path proposed by Turkey to the new Afghan leaders to prevent their own geopolitical syndrome and deceive the Western powers.
The Taliban's decision to cooperate with Turkey was facilitated by the withdrawal of this county from the Istanbul Convention on the Prevention and Control of Violence against Women and Domestic Violence. A move considered throughout the world as a setback for the human rights of women and girls. But was considered as a healthy Islamic gesture by the Taliban lovers of Sharia. A Taliban spokesperson said: “We (the Taliban) want a good relationship with Turkey, Turkey is our brother. We want Turkey to move from the past to the present and the future”.
It was revealed that the Taliban after the last negotiations with the United States in Qatar began discussions with their privileged Islamic countries. This is about working with countries that are fully compliant with Islamic law. Turkey, through its latest statements and fundamentalist accusations against Israel, has turned to a sister state of the Taliban. What about terrorist activity?
The Taliban recognizes that today's terrorist threats do not affect or panic the west, as NATO foreign ministers declared following the end of the debate on the situation in Afghanistan. Perhaps that is why Turkey's secret proposal is the only possible solution at this time.
The conclusion is that we will learn soon how the Taliban will manage their big fear with the West and how it will be reflected in their own syndrome. Will it be the same way the Turkish Mongol tribes handled western fears? Who knows?
But we will find out soon. It’s a matter of time.