In This Review

The Israeli-Turkish Entente
The Israeli-Turkish Entente
By Efraim Inbar
King's College London Mediterranean Studies, 2001, 86 pp.

This model short study, dispassionate and comprehensive, does not waste a word. The common enemies, interests, and bonds with the United States of these two non-Arab states situated in a multipolar Middle East have long offered the potential for a natural partnership. But the ties between the two were prudently low-key until recent years. Only since the 1990s have they moved to a more open "entente" built on military sales, military and intelligence cooperation, and increased commercial ties. Does this partnership make Israel and Turkey more secure? Does it foster stability in the Middle East? In classic balance-of-power terms, the answer to both questions depends on whether the "entente" is a bid for Turko-Israeli hegemony or an effort to keep regional rivals in check. The record thus far leans toward the latter. It is an "entente" more active and publicly avowed than in the past -- but still prudently applied.