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Turkey: A Rising Power in the Backyard of Europe

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According to Alice Lyman Miller, Professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School, the definition of a superpower is “a country which has the capacity to project dominating power and influence anywhere in the world, and sometimes, in more than one region of the globe at a time, and so may plausibly attain the status of global hegemony”. A superpower is not only militarily strong but also has a strong economy as well as is self sufficient and politically stable [Read: Top 10 Superpowers of the World]

Turkey bridges Asia and Europe, geographically and culturally, and occupies a strategic geopolitical position on the world map. The land, which was once a hub of trade routes, is now a hub of strategic pipelines. It is the 17th largest economy in the world and,  according to Goldman Sachs, it would be breaking into the elite club of top 10 economies by 2050. Turkey is the voice of modern Muslim world as well as a member of NATO. Hence, it is believed that the country can play a major role in initiating a peace process between the Middle East and West.

John Feffer, the co-director of Foreign Policy in Focus at the Institute for Policy Studies says, “All roads once led to Rome; today all pipelines seem to lead to Turkey. If superpower status followed the rules of real estate — location, location, location — then Turkey would already be near the top of the heap.”

Talking about real estate, the period of 2003 to 2005 was seen as a gilded age for the real estate industry of the country, as property purchases were opened for foreign nationals in 2003. Turkey became popular for wealthy Europeans and American property buyers who bought property in Altinkum, Istanbul, and other holiday destinations, bringing in lots of investment. 

Looking at the amicable and progressive conditions in and around Turkey, some analysts have even mentioned Turkey as China of Eurasia. There have been many case studies and reports of Turkey possibly chasing China in almost every area. [Read: Stealth Superpower: How Turkey Is Chasing China in Bid to Become the Next Big Thing; Assessing Turkey’s Potential as a Global Superpower]

Like China and India, Turkey also managed to endure the recession wave in recent years. There was not a single Turkish bank which had gone under. That is probably because, unlike many Western banks, they have few toxic assets and limited mortgage exposure, as pointed out by The Economist, so the government did not have to divert public money into rescuing banks. However, its economy budget deficit swelled to 23.2 billion Turkish liras ($15 billion) in the first half of 2009, 13 times higher than last year.

In 2011, Turkey experienced a colossal growth of 9.6% in the first 9 months of the year, making the country one of the fastest growing economies in the world.

Brent E. Sasley, Assistant Professor in Political Science at the University of Texas at Arlington, says Turkey certainly has the ability to be a regional power, especially in the Middle East.

“The shift to a private sector economy, combined with the foreign loans, gave a real boost to the economy,” Sasley said. “It has a large population, a dynamic reserve of human capital, a growing economy, a central location, and a history of being a contiguous great power with a high civilization and leadership role.”

Turkey’s strategic position and its growth stories makes it a substantial contender for the EU membership, although its major part lies in Asia. Turkey has been in discussion for years on EU’s table for the possible inclusion of the country in the group. If  the European Union was not in the picture, Turkey would have caught the attention of BRIC nations. Many analysts believe that the addition of Turkey in the original BRIC nations could have been a better move, rather than the inclusion of South Africa.

Professor Aslı U. Bâli of UCLA School of Law explains that Turkey’s current position is actually an outcome of the “zero problems with neighbors” policy, that prioritized stability and peace in the region. She argued that the foreign policy was not so much an outcome of Turkey’s desire to lead the region, as it was a byproduct of the Arab Spring, requiring Turkey to take a leadership role as a non-Arab state in the midst of regional turmoil. [Read:Turkey: What to Make of the New Superpower in the Middle East]

She further added, “to exert its  “zero problems with neighbors”  policy, Turkey advocated speaking to all sides. That includes mediating between Israel and Syria, and between Iran and the international community on the nuclear issue.”

To appease western nations, Turkey allowed Europe and the United States funding a series of pipelines that uses Turkish territory in a bid to bypass Russia. At the same time, it negotiated with Russia for another project of pipelines—the South Stream, which goes from Russia to Bulgaria through Turkish territorial waters, and the Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline that would transport Russian and Kazakh oil from the Black Sea to the Mediterranean through Turkey. However, with the Arab Spring rolling on, it looks like an arduous task for Turkey to maintain the same policy, since it has already ceased its support to Libya and now to Syria.

Nevertheless, there are strong claims of Turkey following the path of China, but it is more relevant if we look from the European perspective. Europe has recently seen downfall of some of its big economies. At this time, Europe would require a strong nation that can support a collective growth and recovery of the continent.

Sanskar Shrivastava is the founder of international students' journal, The World Reporter. Passionate about dynamic occurrence in geopolitics, Sanskar has been studying and analyzing geopolitcal events from early life. At present, Sanskar is a student at the Russian Centre of Science and Culture and will be moving to Duke University.

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Holiday in Italy: choose Florence for a break in the winter

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Florence is one of the most visited Italian cities, with over 15,4 million tourists visiting the city each year. Located in the heart of the Tuscany region, this beautiful city breathes history, life and culture among its streets. If you are looking for the perfect location for your next winter holidays, then you should look no further, Florence is the perfect destination for you.

Enjoying the best cuisine

Florence is one of the cities with the richer gastronomy in the world. From traditional Italian cuisine to exquisite wines, the food in this city have everything you may wish for in order to please your palate.  With so many options available, you may be wondering where to eat in Florence. Food critics recommend that you check out the following options during your visit to Florence: 

  • Traditional Italian cuisine: visiting Florence and not tasting original Italian cuisine would be considered blasphemous by many.  Italy has one of the most delicious gastronomies in the world, and in Florence you will be able to taste it at its finest with local ingredients. Restaurants like La Chiostrina or Il Rosmarino will allow you to rediscover Italy by its traditional food.
  • Tasting the local wine: wines from the Tuscany region are famous worldwide as the best in the market, making this region the Mecca of wine lovers. During your visit to Florence you will be able to taste those deliquescent wines in restaurants such as Olio Restaurant or Villa Pitiana Restaurant, or taste it on places dedicated exclusively to wine such as Enoteca Obsequium Firenze or L’Enoteca Sandro Soltani.
  • International cuisine: if you like international cuisine, then you are on luck. The best chefs around the globe have restaurants on Florence. This means that you will be able to taste flavours from all the world without having to leave the city. For example,  you can visit the restaurant El Inca for a taste of Peruvian food, restaurant Com Saigon for genuine Vietnamese cuisine, restaurant Ararat for Armenian and Georgian traditional food, or Dim Sum for refined Chinese cuisine. Discover the world by trying the taste of these countries’ traditional flavours.
  • Taste original gelato: gelatos are the ice cream predecessors, and they have been one of Italy’s culinary specialties for centuries . This traditional Italian cold dessert is similar to ice cream, but has less fat and less added sugar. You will be able to enjoy this amazing treat on the many gelaterias around Florence streets, such as Gelateria Edoardo or Gelateria Dei Neri.
  • Tapas and Street food: these are excellent alternatives if you are looking to make a simple meal with your family. You will be able to enjoy these small dishes in places like Italian Tapas or Rivalta Cafe.
  • Modern cuisine: you can taste the most modern and alternative cuisine in the world in Florence. Restaurants like Alla Torre De’ Rossi or Winter Garden by Caino will bring to your table the sophistication the more delicate palates crave. 

Discover Florence’s hidden gems

Florence is a city with a lot of monuments and museums to discover. However, most people that visit the city tend to focus only on the main monuments of the city, such as Campanile di Giotto or Palazzo Vecchio o della Signoria, and the restaurants near those. Because of that, if you want to experience Florence to its fullest, we recommend you rent a bike

Discovering Florence by bike will grant you access to places away from the mainstream crowds,  such as the Andrea del Sarto Museum (dedicated to this amazing Italian painter) or the beautiful Ospedale degli Innocenti (a 17th-century home for abandoned children which includes some amazing pieces of art done by renowned artists like Botticelli). These are really stunning places you would miss if you stick to the traditional tourist route, causing you a lot of regrets over the missed chance. 

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Working & Travelling In Greece

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Greece is a fantastic destination for many people, and for a number of different reasons. It you are keen to see some of the islands and soak up the sun, then you are in for a truly luxurious and paradisiacal time indeed. Similarly, if you just want to spend some time in Athens and see the major sights, then you will come away feeling refreshed and full of vigour from the sheer history and culture that surrounds you. But Greece is also a great place to consider if you are keen to work and travel at the same time. There are plenty of opportunities which you can grab there, and it is a perfect setting if you are a freelancer looking to work on the go. Let’s take a look at some of the things you might want to consider when you are thinking about working and travelling in Greece.

Your Itinerary

Greece Beach

Even if you plan to somewhat move around at leisure, you will probably still find it useful to have some kind of itinerary to work on. That will mean that that whole side of things has been taken care of, which won’t therefore be too much of a worry or a stress when you are trying to make the most of the time you have there. You can then work away, if you are freelancing, while also moving around as you have determined. You can always move away from this, and it is a good idea to have a kind of loose itinerary, but as long as you have one that is the main thing that matters. It will make working and travelling in Greece much easier and more likely to succeed.

The Technical Aspects

Because of the nature of working on the go, you will need to make sure that you have fully understood everything you need to do in order to keep your lifestyle working smoothly. That largely means looking into the more technical aspects of working on the go, which is something that you might find is easier than you would think. As long as you make a point of finding out how to sync contacts from iPhone to Mac so you can better keep in touch with people, and as long as you know what software you need to have to do your work, you should be able to travel the world and work as you please, so that is something to consider.

The Culture

Greece monument

You will probably find that Greek culture suits working very well, and it might be something that you want to think about in order to make sure that it is really the right place for you. It all depends on the nature of the work. For writers and other creatives, it could be the perfect backdrop, and you might feel that you simply never want to leave. However it is that you approach it, you can be sure that you are going to have a great time like this.

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Holidays in Tenerife

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Rent a Scooter in Tenerife expands your chances of enjoying this island to the fullest. You can reach all its corners as quickly and comfortably as possible. Do you dare to try tourism on two wheels?

Why rent a scooter in Tenerife?

The pleasure of riding a motorcycle

I can assure you that whoever tries the option of renting a scooter in Tenerife to spend their vacations, always repeats … and that, beyond its functional advantages, this means of transport is a way of life in itself, capable of make your journey much more fun. Time will fly by!

The small size of the motorcycles allows them to get into even the most remote routes, making possible to know each and every one of the best places in Tenerife (such as the Teide National Park, San Cristóbal de La Laguna, El Médano beach, the Port of the cross…).

A means of transport without troubles

Since Tenerife is an island, it turns out very complicated and expensive to transfer your own car or motorcycle there. Car and moto rental is revealed as the smartest way to travel through the Canary Islands, as it allows you to win in freedom of movement.

It is better to rent a scooter in Tenerife than a car, since these types of vehicles makes possible you a more economical, ecological and simple driving. Imagine the traffic jams and parking problems that you will save on board your motorcycle!

Rent a scooter in Tenerife optimizes your time

The holidays are short-lived, so any alternative that allows us to make the most of our stays abroad is welcome. Going by motorbike around the island makes it possible for you to take more advantage every day of your stay, as it allows you to get right where you want, without wasting time waiting for public transport.

Rent a scooter in Tenerife with Atlantic Moto: sure success

When you decide to rent a scooter in Tenerife to spend your holidays it is very important to go to a reliable company that, like veteran Atlantic Moto, takes care of even the smallest detail so that you only have to worry about enjoying your stay.

  • This company puts at your disposal the best scooter brands in the market (Suzuki, Aprilia, Honda, Kawasaki …), belonging to groups A, B, C and D.
  • Atlantic Moto provides you absolutely everything you need to enjoy your scooter, since its prices include such important elements as: lock, insurance, helmet, unlimited mileage … They even advise you on routes and stays on the island!
  • Everything is designed to simplify and speed up the collection of your scooter to the maximum, since you can pick it up at the Atlantis motorcycle office or at the reception of your hotel or holiday apartment.You can even ask to be taken it to the airport!
  • You can book your scooter without obligation, you just have to deposit 10% of the price, then you can modify or cancel said reservation, recovering said deposit.
  • The services of this company are very easy to hire, since you can rent your scooter in Tenerife from its website, which has a 100% secure payment system, which supports PayPal, bitcoin and Visa or Mastercard cards. What are you waiting for try it?
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