New edition of Turkish Red Book shapes new security spheres
ANKARA – Hürriyet Daily News | 10/28/2010 12:00:00 AM |
Changes to the state document that lists the country's enemies have been approved by Turkey's top security board to reflect a new understanding of the potential threats.
Changes to Turkey’s “Red Book,” the state document that lists the country’s enemies, have been approved by the country’s top security board to reflect a new understanding of the potential threats.
The National Security Council, or MGK, announced late Wednesday that it had recommended the Cabinet approve the revised National Security Policy Paper, the country’s top secret document, without revealing its amended content.
The implementation of the document will begin immediately after being officially approved by the Cabinet, according to sources familiar with the process. The document consists of three main sections: “domestic threats,” “external threats” and “defense structure.”
“This Red Book is one of the most confidential documents of state. Its content is not made public,” Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Çiçek told private NTV in an interview Thursday.
Çiçek said the old version of the document, which was 11 pages long, has been replaced by something a little larger, adding that there was a custom to renew its content every five years. “Everyone is writing or talking about it but these discussions do not have any substance,” he stated.
One of the most controversial topics regarding this document was whether it would list “reactionism” among the country’s domestic threats. “Our legal system does not consider reactionism a crime. It’s rather a political concept,” Çiçek said, noting that it was used as part of an attrition campaign.
“There is no such a concept in the law,” he repeated and said: “We cannot insert such concepts into this document.”
However, according to information the Hürriyet Daily News & Economic Review has gathered from anonymous authorities, the document sees attempts to abuse religious feelings for political and other purposes as a potential threat. Some illegal organizations abusing religion were again listed in the document.
The outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, is still listed as the most prominent threat to the country’s stability and integrity.
On the domestic scene, the document also touches on the demographic needs of future Turkey. According to estimations extrapolated from current birth rates, Turkey will not have the sufficient manpower to continue its current economic growth rate for much longer.
[HH] Greece, Iran still on the list
Following the implementation of the government’s goals of having “zero problems with neighbors,” the document has also revised external threats to the nation, detailing the country’s main foreign policy challenges without ranking them, according to sources.
In former versions of the document, Greece was seen as the principal source of a potential crisis due to a number of serious disagreements over the Aegean Sea. Though the document still outlines such problems, it also suggests developing all sorts of relations with the neighbor in order to pre-empt potential tensions. However, contrary to expectations, the document has not removed the “casus belli” declaration, because only the Parliament has the authority to do so.
Iran and an ongoing international rift over that county’s controversial nuclear program, relations with Israel, and suspended efforts to reconcile with Armenia are also listed in the document.
[HH] Cyber terror, other threats
Another change to the content of the Red Book has been the introduction of non-conventional threats.
The document recommends the government and other related institutions take necessary measures against what it sees as a growing cyber threat.
Potential natural disasters due to global warming or climate change were also included in the document while Turkey’s energy supply is also considered an important issue for the overall security of the nation.