Yazar: 16:58 Analiz, Köşe Yazıları, Politika • Bir Yorum

Basic Political “Dynamics” of Turkey – Past, Now and Then


The constant determining factors in Turkish policy were formed in 1923, when the Republic of Turkey was founded as a replacement of destructed Ottoman Empire… Meanwhile we should keep in mind that the founders of Turkey were the interior destroyers of the empire at the same time.

Since that day, the political acts of Turkey have always been shaped in terms of the artificial conflicts between the new republic and the main elements of the country. Those elements were mainly Muslims and Kurds, and still they are. Well, we do have to look back to the beginning, in order to understand today’s concepts and events.

The new republic declared itself as a secular and unitary state, to the contrary of the Ottomans. Since then, the state has strictly oppressed the Muslims and Kurds, with forbidding Islam effectively and denying the existence of Kurds; also prohibited even saying the word “Kurd”. The official theory of the state was that “there was no nation called Kurd but they were Turkish tribes who lived in mountains and forgot their own nationalities” which is ridiculous.

As the decades passed and “one party period” of the parliament ended in 1950, the militarist CHP (Republican Society Party), lost its governmental status with an election and Democratic Party came to rule. So that a new era started in Turkish politics, even though there happened certain interruptions with military interventions such as coups of 1960, 1971, 1980 and 1997 (the Postmodern Coup of 28 Feb.). The final one was an unsuccessful attempt took place against AK Party Government in 27th April 2007.

Since the status quo managed to continue its oppressive effect on the politics, certain artificial elector profiles emerged in the country such as laics, Islamists, and both Turkish and Kurdish nationalists.
Kurds did not have the right of representation in the parliament until 2007 when DTP (now BDP) members elected as deputies and gathered their party group in the parliament. Although it is a leftist nationalist party, its elector profile was interestingly consisted of mostly religious Kurds. The reason was it seemed to be the only option for them against the totalitarian system.

On the other hand there exists a Turkish nationalist party called MHP but it is likely a marginal group since being radically Turkish nationalists. Because CHP has always stood as another option for radical Turkish nationalists who are unnecessarily afraid of so-called religious order to come real in the country. But AK Party of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan which is ruling Turkey since 2002, has broke these point of views with collecting votes from Islamists, leftists, Turkish nationalists, Kurds and even liberals, since it stood against pressures opposed from the army and accepting the countries’ imperially multinational ethnic structure (of Turks, Kurds, Armenians, Arabs, Rums, Jews, etc.) and attitudes. This achievement of Erdoğan still continues and we can see this from today’s election result which is 50% of total votes for AK Party.

Coming to this day, peoples of Anatolia ask for prosperity, in addition to democratic rights which were much more limited in the past. But still the greatest test in front of the Turkish government is the democratic demands of Kurds such as definition of Kurdish identity in the new Constitution to be re-written, education in mother tongue and regional autonomic authorizations. This issue is crucial in terms of avoiding the risk of Kurds to up-rise with encouraging from the revolts in Arab countries. Because it is evident from the voting rates of Diyarbakir the greatest Kurdish city, which is 33% for AK Party and 62% for the BDP (Peace and Democracy Party of Kurds).

Becoming the first party with winning the 50% of votes around the country at 12th June 2011 election, AK Party has a strong support from the public and it seems to lead Turkey to be regional power in Middle East, in case it achieves the fully democratic healings in the country.

This is the third election victory of Erdogan and on each election, he sustained to rise his voting rates. This means Erdoğan now has got the biggest power ever in his hand against the opposing Army officials who were the major obstacles in front of the acts of government. So they lost their chance to think about a new military intervention any more. And consequently the government has its way widely open to run through and achieve its goals.


Hamza Yardımcıoğlu

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