Greece must radically change defence doctrine in light of Turkey’s moves - analysis

As Turkey seeks more influence in the Mediterranean and the Middle East by expanding beyond the borders set by the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne, Greece must fundamentally rethink its defence doctrine, Kostas Stoupas wrote for Greek news website Capital on Friday.

Greece’s new multifaceted fronts to counter Turkey’s efforts should include forming countries in the region into a counterbalance force to face Turkish power, better ties with stronger countries with competing interests with Turkey and strategically placing military equipment to act as a deterrent, Stoupas said in the article reprinted in English on Greek City Times.

Turkey’s military involvement in Syria and Libya, as well as its hydrocarbon exploration efforts, in what is officially recognised as Greek and Cypriot exclusive economic zones, will further strain its relationship with Greece, Stoupas said.

Ankara has a bigger population and higher GDP than Greece, while also investing much more in defence spending, he said, necessitating that Greece, a country on the exterior border of the European Union, appeal to its alliances with the EU and NATO, in their desire for stability.

Greece should further efforts to create a counterbalancing regional force together with Israel, Egypt and Cyprus against Turkish interests in the Mediterranean, he said, adding that these interests are also at odds with those of powerful countries like France in the Middle East, which would have better interest cooperating with Greece.

A deterrent military force could be achieved with greater ease if Greece focuses on smart missile and missile defence systems to be placed on Greek islands close to Turkish soil, like Mytilene, he said, as an alternative to much more costly warships and planes.

Athens should redesign its defence doctrine in tandem with the restructuring of its economy, Stoupas said.