Increasing Multilateral Effects of Un/Armed Drones in the New World Order and Central Asia

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In the Post-Cold War period, it was considered that human security would be prioritized instead of the hegemony of liberal values and the security of the states. However, the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, have disrupted this process. Therefore, instead of humanitarian security, military security, or in other words, state security became a priority. In that process, in which the struggle with terrorism was intense, states attached importance to their defense industry. Due to the fact that terror is an ambiguous threat, states had to be more careful on this issue.

On the other hand, the rivalry and armament between the East and the West reluctantly caused a security dilemma in the world. In that sense, the states, which did not want to suffer from the rivalry of the great powers and protect their sovereignty and independence, focused on developing their defense industry and eliminating the threats. Un/Armed Drones became one of the leading technologies in the defense industry in this process.

The Multilateral Effects of Un/Armed Drones

From the point of view of states, Un/Armed Drones turned into an essential tool. In that period, we can mention three types of states. Those are the manufacturer, the user, and the successful user states. At this point, in addition to having a weapon system, being able to use it successfully and effectively is not only in the military field; It is of great importance to evaluate it in terms of effects and results in political/diplomatic, economic and cultural dimensions. That is why the essential criteria of being the leader country in that issue are not producing or owning those systems. What is essential to be a leader state is having great experience and military capability.

From the military perspective, the Proxy wars in the Post-Cold War periods are threatening the countries in many ways. The Proxy Wars that held with proxy actors instead of conventional wars have brought different security problems, yet that situation has changed with Un/Armed Drones. Since Un/Armed Drones are accepted as essential weapon systems in the fight against terrorism. While the terrorist groups were mentioned as “Kalashnikovs,”; Un/Armed Drones became one of the most significant symbols of the states in the fight against terrorism. Therefore, those features of the terrorist groups, which use geography as an advantage, were destroyed by the Un/Armed Drones.

In conventional and new generation wars, the importance of Un/Armed Drones, which has become one of the most effective weapons of security forces, especially armies, is increasing. As seen in the Second Karabakh War, Un/Armed Drones has determined the fate of the war and victory with their performance. In this process, Un/Armed Drone’s success has become one of the discussed topics. It is almost as if the Un/Armed Drones have become synonymous with the war in question.

In addition, the intelligence obtained through Un/Armed Drones and the difficulty of detecting and destroying the systems in question provide a greater advantage to the countries. The impact of Un/Armed Drones has made regional actors one of the main agendas of various military exercises. Countries are trying to develop various methods to prevent UAVs in their exercises.

With its political/diplomatic impact, Un/Armed Drones have shown that they have the capacity to affect many balances, equations and dynamics in a conflict or crisis area. To give an example, middle powers has become an effective capacity over against the global actor in virtue of Un/Armed Drone technology they have developed. Changing of equilibrium and equation on the subject is not just on land and in the air; it is also valid in the naval force. Further, it is known that various naval forces have been using the Un/Armed Drones recently.

The influence of a regional actor through Un/Armed Drones affects the dynamics of wider geography and the foreign policies of the actors which are trying to be effective in this geography. While Un/Armed Drones have become one of the tools that should be taken into consideration by nation-states, the developments, changing of balance and of equations, in the Mediterranean are cited as a significant example of this.

States that can use Un/Armed Drones effectively are also gaining a similar success in the field at the table. States which use Un/Armed Drones, rather than an actor that will act as requested by other states; it is seen as a country where alliances may be built, and strategic partnerships may be established. The decisive role of Un/Armed Drones on the grounds has started to indicate its influence more clearly at the diplomacy table. Hence, this improvement paves the way for countries to build and develop strategic cooperation, joint relations, and various alliances. In this sense, while Un/Armed Drone gives encourage countries to become closer to each other; it also leads to the establishment of multi-dimensional relations.

From an economic point of view, Un/Armed Drones are a major element of income as they are export tools. Even though various technologies still maintain their dominant position in the world arms trade, it is possible to say that the share of Un/Armed Drones has been increasing. Countries that are confined in a small slice of world trade can break these limitations by exporting weapon systems. Furthermore, exports of Un/Armed Drones are vital in terms of gaining prestige as well as public diplomacy. It can be said that actors that produce and effectively use Un/Armed Drones are considered more in world politics. In addition to this, the identified threats can be realized at a very low cost, with very little effort and with the least loss, and some unexpected risks/results can be avoided with the point operations performed.

Investments in Un/Armed Drone technology contribute to the development of countries in military and civilian technology. Un/Armed Drones, which can be seen as small and simple weapons, actually contain an important complicated technology. In this way, in today’s world, where the importance of the sky and space for countries has increased, Un/Armed Drones are also an incentive for new technological steps. In this way, in today’s world, where the importance of the sky and space for countries has increased, Un/Armed Drones are also an incentive for new technological steps. In particular, a state that produces Un/Armed Drones and exports them to different countries can make more effective technological investments by acting more confidently thanks to the success of the technology it has developed.

Considering the cultural dimension of Un/Armed Drones, exporting Un/Armed Drones to a country will be considered as contributing to its security, and thus pave the way for gaining an important sympathy in the society of the importing country. Presently, states are trying to increase their prestige and soft power by making multidimensional agreements in order to spread their influence on a wider area. At this point, Un/Armed Drones exports also serve this purpose and contribute to the increase of soft power. In addition, the importing country is not only influenced by Un/Armed Drones; it can also be affected by the military doctrine and structuring of the exporting state.

Un/Armed Drone Policy of Central Asia

Today, Europe has been underdeveloped in the production of Un/Armed Drones. In contrast, the states in the Asia region, including Ukraine, have developed different strategies on this issue and increased production capacities. Significant steps also have been taken in Central Asia in terms of Un/Armed Drones. In the region, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan stand out as the leading countries that have made breakthroughs in the subject. On January 15, 2022, Uzbekistan opened an Un/Armed Drones production facility. Kazakhstan has been carrying out various studies for a while to produce Un/Armed Drones independently. Looking at Central Asia, it is seen that every country has Un/Armed Drones. The last country to add Un/Armed Drone to its inventory is Kyrgyzstan. Turkmenistan also exhibited Un/Armed Drones in the celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the Independence Day. Turkmenistan, which has the Permanent Neutrality Status, has seen Un/Armed Drones as a significant tool in strengthening its defense systems in order to eliminate all kinds of threats against its independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and unitary structure, especially terrorism.

A significant part of Central Asian countries is a geography that has been directly affected by security problems, radicalization and separatist movements, especially Afghanistan-centered, almost since their independence. In this context, the production and effective use of Un/Armed Drones has become an important military necessity for the countries of the region. As it is known, today, there is an intervention of global powers in various regions for imperialist purposes. In this sense, Central Asia needs to reach the capacity to provide its own security so that the “New Great Game” does not turn into a conflict area.

Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, which invest in Un/Armed Drones technology in Central Asia and take strategic steps to produce the mentioned technology, have also found an important opportunity to gain economic profit. Because, as seen in proxy wars such as Libya and the Second Karabakh War, the performance of Un/Armed Drones has increased the demand for these vehicles. While the increase in the demand enabled the opening of new export items for the Central Asian countries; It means that together with the increasing gains thanks to technology, the welfare levels of the countries of the region will increase even more and they will allocate resources to new technological investments more confidently, and thus the strong state-building and regional cooperation in the region will expand-deepen.

It is seen that Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan implement multi-dimensional foreign policies and establish relations with different actors within the framework of common interests and mutual respect. Thanks to the influence they will create on the political basis and the relations they will establish in the diplomatic framework, the production of Un/Armed Drones will make Central Asia a stronger cooperation and welfare center. The relations that the countries of the region will develop with various actors will gain a deeper and broader feature beyond the political, economic and cultural dimensions, thanks to the Un/Armed Drones. These countries, which follow an uncompromising policy in protecting their independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and unitary structures, will increase their prestige and influence in the international arena by making a great contribution to the security of other states.

As a result, the New World Order is still in the process of change and development. Unlike the Cold War era, actors other than the great powers also become influential thanks to the technologies they have developed, the collaborations they have established, their strong economies and effective weapon technologies. The advantages of Un/Armed Drones in this process; It is possible to evaluate it in terms of political/diplomatic, military, economic and cultural aspects. Central Asian countries, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, have also turned to Un/Armed Drones production in order to benefit from the advantages provided by the vehicles in question and to increase their gains. Based on all this information, it can be said that the regional states’ interest in Un/Armed Drones will continue to increase in terms of ensuring their own security and establishing regional-global cooperation and peace.

Prof. Dr. Mehmet Seyfettin EROL
1969 Dörtyol-Hatay doğumlu olan Prof. Dr. Mehmet Seyfettin Erol, Boğaziçi Üniversitesi (BÜ) Siyaset Bilimi ve Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nden 1993 yılında mezun oldu. BÜ’de 1995 yılında Yüksek Lisans çalışmasını tamamlayan Erol, aynı yıl BÜ’de doktora programına kabul edildi. Ankara Üniversitesi’nde doktorasını 2005’de tamamlayan Erol, 2009 yılında “Uluslararası İlişkiler” alanında doçent ve 2014 yılında da Profesörlük unvanlarını aldı. 2000-2006 tarihleri arasında Avrasya Stratejik Araştırmaları Merkezi (ASAM)’nde görev yapan Erol, 2009 yılında Stratejik Düşünce Enstitüsü’nün (SDE) Kurucu Başkanlığı ve Yönetim Kurulu Üyeliği görevlerinde bulundu. Uluslararası Strateji ve Güvenlik Araştırmaları Merkezi (USGAM)’nin de kurucu başkanı olan Prof. Erol, Yeni Türkiye Stratejik Araştırmalar Merkezi (YTSAM) Uluslararası İlişkiler Enstitüsü Başkanlığını da yürütmektedir. Prof. Erol, Gazi Üniversitesi Stratejik Araştırmalar Merkezi (GAZİSAM) Müdürlüğü görevinde de bulunmuştur. 2007 yılında Türk Dünyası Yazarlar ve Sanatçılar Vakfı “Türk Dünyası Hizmet Ödülü”nü alan Prof. Erol, akademik anlamdaki çalışmaları ve medyadaki faaliyetlerinden dolayı çok sayıda ödüle layık görülmüştür. Bunlardan bazıları şu şekilde sıralanabilir: 2013 yılında Çağdaş Demokratlar Birliği Derneği tarafından “Yılın Yazılı Medya Ödülü”, 2015 yılında “APM 10. Yıl Hizmet Ödülü”, Türkiye Yazarlar Birliği tarafından “2015 Yılın Basın-Fikir Ödülü”, Anadolu Köy Korucuları ve Şehit Aileleri “2016 Gönül Elçileri Medya Onur Ödülü”, Yörük Türkmen Federasyonları tarafından verilen “2016 Türkiye Onur Ödülü”. Prof. Erol’un 15 kitap çalışması bulunmaktadır. Bunlardan bazılarının isimleri şu şekildedir: “Hayalden Gerçeğe Türk Birleşik Devletleri”, “Türkiye-AB İlişkileri: Dış Politika ve İç Yapı Sorunsalları”, “Avrasya’da Yeni Büyük Oyun”, “Türk Dış Politikasında Strateji Arayışları”, “Türk Dış Politikasında Güvenlik Arayışları”, “Türkiye Cumhuriyeti-Rusya Federasyonu İlişkileri”, “Sıcak Barışın Soğuk Örgütü Yeni NATO”, “Dış Politika Analizinde Teorik Yaklaşımlar: Türk Dış Politikası Örneği”, “Krizler ve Kriz Yönetimi: Aktörler ve Örnek Olaylar”, “Kazakistan” ve “Uluslararası İlişkilerde Güncel Sorunlar”. 2002’den bu yana TRT Türkiye’nin sesi ve TRT Radyo 1 (Ankara Radyosu) “Avrasya Gündemi”, “Stratejik Bakış”, “Küresel Bakış”, “Analiz”, “Dosya”, “Haber Masası”, “Gündemin Öteki Yüzü” gibi radyo programlarını gerçekleştirmiş olan Prof. Erol, TRT INT televizyonunda 2004-2007 yılları arasında Arayış, 2007-2010 yılları arasında Kanal A televizyonunda “Sınır Ötesi” ve 2020-2021’de de BBN TÜRK televizyonunda “Dış Politika Gündemi” programlarını yaptı. 2012-2018 yılları arasında Millî Gazete’de “Arayış” adlı köşesinde dış politika yazıları yayımlanan Prof. Erol’un ulusal-uluslararası medyada çok sayıda televizyon, radyo, gazete, haber siteleri ve dergide uzmanlığı dahilinde görüşlerine de başvurulmaktadır. 2006-2018 yılları arasında Gazi Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nde ve Ankara Üniversitesi Latin Amerika Araştırmaları Merkezi’nde (LAMER) de dersler veren Prof. Erol, 2018’den bu yana Ankara Hacı Bayram Veli Üniversitesi Uluslararası İlişkiler Bölümü’nde öğretim üyesi olarak akademik kariyerini devam ettirmektedir. Çok sayıda dergi ve gazetede yazıları-değerlendirmeleri yayımlanan; Avrasya Dosyası, Stratejik Analiz, Stratejik Düşünce, Gazi Bölgesel Çalışmalar, The Journal of SSPS, Karadeniz Araştırmaları, gibi akademik dergilerde editörlük faaliyetlerinde bulunan Prof. Erol, Bölgesel Araştırmalar, Uluslararası Kriz ve Siyaset Araştırmaları, Gazi Akademik Bakış, Ege Üniversitesi Türk Dünyası İncelemeleri, Demokrasi Platformu dergilerinin editörlüklerini hali hazırda yürütmektedir. 2016’dan bu yana Ankara Kriz ve Siyaset Araştırmaları Merkezi (ANKASAM) Kurucu Başkanı olarak çalışmalarını devam ettiren Prof. Erol, evli ve üç çocuk babasıdır.