By M.K. Kaya and Svante E. Cornell (vol. 1, no. 10 of the Turkey Analyst)
Turkey’s military occupies a position of influence in the country’s society and politics unseen in any other western democracy. However, in spite of a propensity to interfere in politics, the top brass has remained relatively quiet in the past year, while the driving force in the vocal opposition to the AKP government has been the judiciary. But given the growing intensity of Turkey’s regime crisis, illustrated by the July 1 arrests, it remains to be seen whether the military can succeed in staying out of this fight.
By Halil Magnus Karaveli (vol. 1, no. 9 of the Turkey Analyst)
As the storms gather around the AKP, its rule is by all accounts likely to draw to a close. What went wrong with Turkey’s experiment of moderate Islamism? It is tempting for western observers to conclude that it was sabotaged by a supposedly autocratic, dogmatically secularist state establishment which is unwilling to surrender its positions of power. But the fatal mistake of the Islamists has precisely been to expect the seculars to accept surrender.
By the Editors (vol. 1, no. 9 of the Turkey Analyst)
In late May 2008, three researchers from the Joint Center’s Turkey Initiative met with Turkey’s 9th president, Süleyman Demirel. This is a summary of his comments, which focused on the background to the current Turkish political crisis. Mr. Demirel, a towering figure over Turkey’s conservative forces for half a century, defines the problem as a struggle between modernity and bigotry.
By Halil Magnus Karaveli (vol. 1, no. 8 of the Turkey Analyst)
The ideological confrontation between Islamism and secularism in Turkey is fed by contradictory interpretations of republican history. The enterprise of secularism is either understood as having oppressed religion or as having been insufficiently true to its Enlightenment heritage. How republican history is interpreted will ultimately shape the future course of Turkey.
The Turkey Analyst is a publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Joint Center, designed to bring authoritative analysis and news on the rapidly developing domestic and foreign policy issues in Turkey. It includes topical analysis, as well as a summary of the Turkish media debate.