Turkey Is Changing the Middle East. The U.S. Doesn’t Get It.
The Middle East is changing fast but the U.S. seems to be the last government to realize it and respond.
For at least 10 years, the region has been caricatured as divided into two camps: a pro-Iranian coalition and a looser but larger group that opposes Iran’s ambitions. For short, it’s sometimes foolishly reduced to a Sunni-Shiite sectarian divide. That was always a distortion, and it’s become increasingly clear that, while the pro- and anti-Iranian camps do exist, there’s also a distinctive third bloc emerging, with a Sunni Islamist orientation, led by Turkey. Ankara is turning into a major regional player with its own agenda, ambitions, ideology and allies.