Turkey’s Authoritarian Legacy
It’s tempting to blame the country’s recent slide into repression on President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s thirst for personal power. But did the ruling Islamist party ever really abandon the country’s long tradition of state authoritarianism?
For years, explaining Turkey’s democratic travails seemed an easy task. There was the persistence of an authoritarian tradition, whose source was identified as Kemalism—the secularist-nationalist founding ideology of the Turkish republic—and which the military embodied. According to the conventional narrative on Turkey, with which anyone who has only casually followed international politics during the last decades will be familiar, the Turkish military had a mission—to “protect secularism”—which explained, so we were taught, its habit of overthrowing governments. All that was needed for Turkish democracy to flourish was the emergence of a force strong enough to end the tutelage of the military.
Engulfed in the Gulf: Erdoğan and the Qatar Crisis
The Gulf crisis over Qatar is once again catapulting Turkey into the politics of the Middle East, for which it is woefully unprepared. After a brief attempt at neutrality, Ankara […]
Walking for Justice: The Path Forward for Turkey’s Opposition
With his call for justice, which is a concept and a call that resonates among vast swathes of the population, CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has positioned himself as the tribune […]
EU och det nya Turkiet
Den 16 april 2017 kommer att gå till historien som ett symboliskt datum för Turkiet och dess relation till Europa. Med ja-sidans seger i folkomröstningen stod det klart att landet […]
Turkey’s Constitutional Referendum and Erdogan’s Faded Democratic Credentials
The Turkish constitutional referendum of April 16, 2017 dealt yet another blow to President Tayyip Erdoğan’s already faltering claim to democratic legitimacy. Not only did both the referendum and campaign […]
Turkey & Qatar’s Support for Extremist Groups
For a long time both Qatar and Turkey have been U.S. partners in name, but provide material support to extremist groups at the same time.
Turkey and Russia: Aggrieved Nativism par excellence
Turkey and Russia have recently both turned to an aggrieved nativism that delegitimizes democratic opposition. This nativism is nationalist, anti-elitist, protectionist, revanchist/irredentist, xenophobic and “macho”. Despite three decades of post-Cold […]