By Gareth Jenkins
August 30, 2021
The promotions and assignments announced after the August 4, 2021 annual meeting of the Supreme Military Council (YAŞ), which is responsible for deciding appointments in the Turkish high command, reaffirmed President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s control over what had once been the most powerful institution in the country. Nevertheless, in recent weeks there has been considerable speculation that a career army officer, namely former Chief of the Turkish General Staff (TGS) and current Defense Minister Hulusi Akar, is trying to position himself as Erdoğan’s heir apparent.
By Alan Makovsky
July 2, 2021
The day after the June 14 Biden-Erdoğan summit, one former Turkish official opined, “Before this meeting, I thought that saving US-Turkish relations is Mission Impossible. Now I think it’s only Mission Extremely Difficult.” That reaction pointed to the result of the summit: a net gain, if only a tentative one, for the Turkish President, when no gain at all had been expected.
By Gareth Jenkins
February 11, 2021
The continuing protests at Istanbul’s Boğaziçi University are unlikely to lead to a repeat of the Gezi Park Protests, which swept Turkey in summer 2013, much less pose a serious threat to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s grip on power. But his heavy-handed response has provided another example not only of the intolerance of dissent that has come to characterize his regime but of his increasing tendency to make mistakes and miscalculations – including his failure to understand that his repeated recourse to the politics of fear is insufficient to halt the long-term decline in his popular support.
By Oya Baydar
February 1, 2021
Turkey is evolving from authoritarianism to fascism under the tutelage of the far-right leader Devlet Bahçeli, to whom President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan defers to stay in power. Turkish and international observers have until recently failed to take the full measure of Bahçeli’s importance, treating him as the “junior partner” of Erdoğan, overlooking that Bahçeli is the political front-figure of the state establishment and that he gives voice to the die-hard nationalist, militarist-expansionist mentality that is deeply entrenched in the Turkish state. Meanwhile, the opposition does not offer a democratic counter-force as it too remains wedded to statist nationalism. Yet, faced with the imminent threat of fascism, the parties of the Turkish opposition must sooner or later recognize that it will be their turn next and that the western parts of Turkey cannot and will not remain democratic when the eastern, Kurdish part of the country is under the rule of dictatorship.
by Suat Kınıklıoğlu
May 10, 2017
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 War transition both countries have failed to be at peace with themselves; have not been able to adjust to their neighboring regions and come to terms with their respective histories.
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.