Vassilios Damiras, Ph.D.

International Relations Expert

Cyprus is essential for the American national interests. It is in a crucial geostrategic position between Europe and the Middle East. In 1962, U.S. Vice President Lyndon Johnson visited the island. On May 21, 2014, Vice President Joe Biden visited the island. Both wanted to bring Cyprus closer to the USA. During Johnson’s visit, the Cold War had long consolidated the U.S. presence in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. Both Greece and Turkey were NATO members. When Biden visited Cyprus, the USA faced the jihadist threat. Currently, the USA faces Iran and its proxies in the region and the Russian influence in Syria and surrounding areas.

In addition, Cyprus has natural liquid gas sea fields. The USA wants to develop these sea fields. Turkey, which has occupied seventy-seven percent of the island since 1974 with the excuse of protecting democracy in Cyprus, creates problems for these developments. In addition, Ankara supports ISIS and Hamas. These actions are against U.S. policies in the region. The geometry of regional power is shifting even as the challenges the American government faces in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and its littoral nation-states intensify. President Trump created the so-called small NATO with Greece, Israel, Cyprus, and Egypt. However, building coalitions with common interests has become complicated. The USA must safeguard and promote its national interests in the region. It will protect regional stability and prosperity.

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