Friday, June 5, 2015

Another Ataturk?

Margaret Warner on the upcoming Turkish elections (here):
this is an election at which you don’t have at stake the classic issues of war and peace or the economy. It’s really about Erdogan’s wanting to fulfill this lifelong dream of becoming another Kemal Ataturk, the all-powerful Turkish president who founded modern Turkey almost 100 years ago.
Of course, Ataturk founded Turkey as a secular state and Erdogan's party is an Islamic one. Details, details.

The usually perspicacious Ms. Warner also said this:
And so what you have now is, of course [Erdogan] still has a huge base of rural, conservative, Islamic support. And nobody thinks he won’t win most votes or his party won’t win most. But enough voters are telling pollsters that they are worried that, if he gets the kind of huge margin he wants to ram through this constitutional change [increasing executive powers], then he will become very much like Russia’s Vladimir Putin, in other words, an elected, but authoritarian ruler.
'Competitive authoritarianism' much? Where are Levitsky & Way when you need 'em? [link]

Update (6/10): The election is over and Erdogan did not win by the margin he needed to revamp the constitution.

No comments: