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As history records contemporary leaders for posterity, tragically, many are misunderstood and thus recorded with a lack of accuracy, comprehension and candor. One of the most eminently relevant yet misconstrued leaders of the Western world is Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Despite the frequently inaccurate and seemingly prejudicial rhetoric associated with him, he is, in reality, a reformer and has persistently sought to enshrine democratic and humanitarian values.

Throughout his rather pragmatic near-two-decade tenure, Ankara has become a key player in promoting governance reforms in international organizations, grown into a large donor of international aid, heavily contributed financial resources toward global infrastructure and invested in programs destined to strengthen output growth and agricultural productivity. Regardless of North America’s mainstream media’s reporting, international audiences are well aware of Turkey’s enormous leap forward in its geopolitical role and admirable economic growth, the waves of which are felt from Eurasia to Vietnam to Ecuador.

Mr - Erdoğan - Robust - Policy - Realm

Mr. Erdoğan’s robust and collaborative foreign policy even beyond the realm of Europe and the Middle East paved the way for Turkey to secure two bilateral agreements with Vietnam (Prevention of Double Taxation; Civil Aviation and Maritime Cooperation) in 2014-2015.

Further, Turkey is increasingly present in Latin America; investments in Ecuadorean port infrastructure reaching over US $750 million. President Erdoğan has revitalized Ankara’s strategic ties with the Western Hemisphere; the only president to have conducted two official visits to South America and the Caribbean two years in a row (2015 & 2016).

Washington - Approach - Leadership - Erdoğan - Commonalities

With Washington’s general approach to leadership, Erdoğan possesses more commonalities than differences in terms of his statecraft, enabling him to lead a consolidated American-style democracy, advocating for economic growth and the harnessing of a free and open society.

The Turkish public demonstrated their unwavering support for President Erdoğan, actively participating in last year’s constitutional referendum; a historic accomplishment that brings Ankara’s governmental...
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