Nuclearization of the Middle East and Turkey’s Possible Responses

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Assertions are regularly made that Turkey could make the decision to obtain nuclear weapons in response to the nuclearization of the Middle East in general and a nuclear weapons capable Iran in particular. It is feared that Turkey might think about a path like Iran has followed. With or without the incitement of Iran’s nuclear program, Turkey may theoretically be seen as a powerful candidate to seek nuclear weapons development capability. But a host of reasons militate against such an option. Before everything else, it must be noted that virtually no state has developed nuclear weapons capability without substantial support and effective cover from a superpower or from a scientifically and technologically advanced country. Hence, one particular condition for Turkey to go nuclear, either clandestinely by staying in the NPT, or by walking out of the treaty, would be to secure the endorsement of such a power, which, however, is not on sight nowadays.

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