The current Chief of the General staff is General Necdet Özel. The Chief of the General Staff is the Commander of the Armed Forces. In wartime, he acts as the Commander in Chief on behalf of the President of Turkey, who represents the Supreme Military Command of the TAF on behalf of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. Commanding the Armed Forces and establishing the policies and programs related with the preparation for combat of personnel, intelligence, operations, organization, training and logistic services are the responsibilities of the General Staff. Furthermore, the General Staff coordinates the military relations of TAF with NATO member states and other friendly nations.
After becoming a member of NATO on 18 February 1952, Turkey initiated a comprehensive modernization program for its Armed Forces. The Turkish Army sent troops to fight in Korea, where they played pivotal roles at some points. Towards the end of the 1980s, a second restructuring process was initiated. The TAF participate in European Union battlegroups under control of the European Council, as a part of the Italian-Romanian-Turkish Battlegroup, which was on standby for duty during June–December 2010. It also contributes operational staff to the Eurocorps multinational army corps initiative of the EU and NATO.
The ATAK programme was begun to meet the Turkish Armed Forces' requirements for an attack and tactical reconnaissance helicopter. The T129 is the result of the integration of Turkish developed high-tech avionics and weapon systems onto the combat proven AgustaWestland A129 airframe, with upgraded engines, transmission and rotor blades. It is in use by the Turkish Army, and is being offered to other air forces.
The ATAK programme was begun to meet the Turkish Armed Forces' requirements for an attack and tactical reconnaissance helicopter. Turkey announced on 30 March 2007 that it had decided to negotiate with AgustaWestland to co-develop and produce 51 (with 40 options) attack helicopters based on the Agusta A129 Mangusta. Based on the AW129, the helicopter is to be assembled in Turkey by Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) as the T-129. A contract was signed on 7 September 2007 worth $1.2 billion. Turkey's attack helicopter project is named "ATAK".