There is a “favorable climate” and a “window of opportunity” is opening for Nicosia, in terms of imposing sanctions on Turkey, due to the developments with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, say Professors Ioannis Mazis and Konstantinos Grivas. We need to expand our geopolitical potential as we are “plagued by heterogeneity and procrastination over the windows of opportunity” vis-»-vis Turkey, notes retired Commander Stefanos Karavidas.
In an interview with KYPE, Mr. Mazis, Mr. Grivas and Mr. Karavidas refer to the impact of the crisis, both at European level and in the SE Mediterranean region, while they say that Greece and the Republic of Cyprus can claim a new geopolitical role.
“We must lead to an immediate denunciation of Turkey and a demand from the EU and NATO to raise the quality of sanctions for the war crimes it has committed – in imitation of Russian atrocities [in Ukraine] – in Cyprus.” says Professor Ioannis Mazis, President of the Department of Turkish Studies and Contemporary Asian Studies at the School of Economics and Political Science, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.
Among other things, he reiterated his proposal to create a sub-NATO enclave under French control and coordination. At the same time, he proposes that “the Republic of Cyprus should propose its application to become a member of NATO”, the organization that is currently presented by the international community as “the only means of Western resistance to the hegemony of Russia and possibly China in the future.” “, As he says.
By joining NATO, he continues, the Turkish Cypriot community will be able to come under the protection of the North Atlantic Alliance, while “the occupation troops will be withdrawn” and the British bases will be able to be converted into NATO bases. Following his proposal, he said that all this is positive for peace, security and cooperation in the SE Mediterranean.
Regarding the proposal for the creation of a sub-NATO enclave between Greece-Cyprus-Israel-Egypt, Mr. Mazis notes that he will enjoy the coordination of France, the only, as he says, European nuclear power with “expressed and clear interests in Mediterranean “, will operate in addition to NATO, but will produce real security.
He also referred to the recent Greek-French defense agreement, with a defense assistance clause, while reiterating his proposal to create conditions for the establishment of an autonomous French base in Cyprus, which, as he said, will contribute to the defense of Cyprus. “These should be the goal of the policy of the Governments of Greece and Cyprus,” said Mr. Mazis, adding that relations with Israel, as well as Egypt, should be constantly deepened in every field.
Answering a relevant question, Mr. Mazis says that Turkey is coming out of the developments in Ukraine upgraded “because Athens and Nicosia allow it together”. He speaks of the “provocative analogy” of the Russian invasion of Ukraine with that of Turkey in Cyprus in 1974. Russia, like Turkey in the past, invades, creates the dead, the pseudo-state, the displaced, says and speaks of war crimes. “In the case of Ukraine, we see the European public, the NATO machine, Washington, Britain raising awareness,” which, he said, is positive.
At the same time, he speaks of a favorable climate for Nicosia in relation to the imposition of sanctions on Turkey, despite the “theories that sanctions are not an end in itself for Cyprus” as he states. In this way, he continues, the “immersion in the swimming pool of Siloam, Turkey, which will soon appear as a peacekeeping force” in Ukraine is cut off.
If a confederal solution is created in Ukraine, with independent states, which will be under the control of Turkey, Mr. Mazis does not rule out the application of this model in Cyprus.
Konstantinos Grivas, Professor of Geopolitics and Modern Military Technologies, director of the Department of War Theory and Analysis at the Military School of Guards, who also teaches Geography of Security in the Wider Middle East at the University of the Turkish, that in the new international system that is being formed, Greece and the Republic of Cyprus are in a pivotal position and can claim a new geopolitical role for the benefit of the architecture to which they belong.
The Governments of Greece and Cyprus show ” do not want to take advantage of an amazing window of opportunity, given literally once in a thousand years “in relation to sanctions, he continues.
According to him, the Greek side bids for the imposition of international law “but at the same time there is no talk of the constant, violent violation of international law and the ongoing crime against humanity that is still taking place in Cyprus” or what is happening in the Aegean./p>
She also expressed the view that “it was the ideal time to extend the territorial waters to 12 nautical miles” by deconstructing the casus beli of Turkey, which, as she said, “could not implement it”.
Mr. Grivas also notes the rearmament of Germany, among the developments recorded since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. “This is automatically a big challenge for European unity, as it means that anti-German reflexes are being activated from many directions,” he said. He explains that even countries considered to belong to Germany's sphere of influence, such as the Netherlands, would be highly suspicious of a massive rearmament of Berlin.
To prevent the disintegration of European integration, the rearmament should be part of a joint European effort, he says. Objectively, he continues, the Franco-German axis is strengthened, as we are talking about joint defense programs. We will go one step beyond Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO), he estimates and says that the Franco-German approach through the Franco-Greek relationship can also mean a restart of the Greek-German relations.
In the context of the concept of a common European says that Greece has the comparative advantage, that it is the only European country that maintained for years armed forces to face a “homologous opponent”, something that according to Mr. Grivas, opens the door for potential cooperation in the European defense sector. .
Retired Commander-in-Chief and flight instructor in the United Arab Emirates, Stefanos Karavidas, notes that recent events in Ukraine confirm the shift to “classical Thucydides realism” where power plays a dominant role. We must get rid of the old illusions and see the reality with raw realism, he says while adding that “we do not have the opportunity to lag behind in the armament program”.
Regarding the rearmament of Germany, he says that the recent announcement of the “mammoth program” of 100 billion is in exchange for the severance of energy relations with Russia. “Such a thing brings many developments, which can be both dangerous and hopeful for something better in relation to the collective future of Europe,” he continues.
He says that Greece is not a country that lacks potential and speaks of a “military giant” noting that Athens has more than 1400 chariots, compared to the 250 of Germany and the 400 of France.
The Republic of Cyprus “must emerge from a long period of armaments inaction” continues, noting in particular the plan to create a geopolitical hub in Marie, with energy plans such as that of EastMed that “we must not stop putting it publicly in discussion », of the EuroAsia and EuroAfrica Interconnector. This plan, which potentially includes the naval base, must be protected through defense systems, he says.
According to Mr. Karavidas, “we should not have phobic syndromes in relation to the capabilities of the Turkish armed forces” as “Turkey is projecting greater power than it really has, convincing society in both Greece and Cyprus.”
< "We need to redouble our geopolitical potential as we're tossing and turning on the window of opportunity" over Turkey, he says.
Asked about the use of drones or drones – such as the Turkish-made Bayraktar – and how they change the balance on the battlefield, Mr Karavidas spoke of “exaggerations” but also of “Turkish propaganda” in relation to the use of in Libya and Nagorno-Karabakh. “In Ukraine, respectively, we saw that the fingerprint was not the same. The Bairaktars were destroyed from the ground and needed at least two confirmed – and possibly more – drone transports “from Turkey to Ukraine,” he said.
They are “substitutes for fighter jets” as the Akinji and Ak Sungyur twin-engine drones are large aircraft, which are slower than a fighter. Asked about the possibility of creating a base for Turkish drones in occupied Lefkonikos, Mr. Karavidas says that he is not afraid of their presence here.
We must make sure to become attractive and prove that we can become its front of western architecture, he says conclusively.