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Turkey Media Roundup (August 18)

[PKK fighters in Qandil, 15 May 2013. Photo via thomas koch /] [PKK fighters in Qandil, 15 May 2013. Photo via thomas koch /]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Turkey and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Turkey Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to by Sunday night of every week.]


Kurdish Politics and the Peace Process

Why Did the PKK and HDP Commit This Lunacy? AKP Member of Parliament Markar Esayan describes President Erdoğan, Prime Minister Davutoğlu, and the AKP as “the guarantors of peace” who were demonized and undermined by the PKK and the HDP.

PKK vs. Turkey: Violence Plagues People of Başak Jasper Mortimer examines the collapse of the Kurdish peace process and the resurgence of state violence in urban areas of southeastern and eastern Turkey.

What Would You Do If the PKK Killed Your People? İlnur Çevik criticizes what he sees as western “sympathies” for the PKK and praises the Turkish military’s use of efficient and domestically produced military technology to kill PKK militants.

Why Terror Hits Turkey From All Quarters According to Melih Altınok, both ISIS and the PKK are using the uncertainty surrounding coalition talks as an opportunity to attack Turkey.

Is Turkey's 'Emergency Rule' Back? Mahmut Bozarslan describes the impact that the declaration of “emergency rule” in thirty-seven areas across the Kurdish region is having on agriculture.

Who Really Sabotaged the Reconciliation Process? İbrahim Kalın writes that the disarmament of the PKK goes against its “raison d’etre,” and that the peace process can only proceed with the PKK’s full disarmament.

What Should the State Do? Orhan Oğuz Gürbüz appraises a recent event where state security forces bound and threatened construction workers to show how flawed the state’s conduct is.

I Thought the Mothers Weren't Supposed to Cry? Abdülhamit Bilici argues that for the AKP, the peace process was never really about attaining peace, but instead it was intended “to transition Turkey into a country ruled by one man.”

Speculation About Turkish Civil War Is Just That Metin Gürcan claims that Turkey is not headed toward a civil war because the past fifteen years have seen a radical shift in military-civilian relations.

Military Intervention in Syria

Can We Trust Turkey on ISIL? Joost Lagendijk questions the sincerity of the government’s U-turn regarding ISIS policy.

Turkey’s Report Card on Syria Doğu Ergil talks about public perceptions of Turkey’s involvement with the war in Syria based on MetroPOLL polling agency’s report.

An Agreement With Strong Signals of Strain Yavuz Baydar describes the context of the mistrust between the US and Turkey on Turkey’s rather reluctant fight against ISIS and the end of armistice with the PKK.

Has Press Freedom Fallen Victim to AKP’s Syria Policy? “Has the Turkish government once again tried to silence a journalist, this time one who has drawn links between the AKP government's Syria policy and terror attacks by Islamic State in the country?” asks Kadri Gürsel.

Islamic State Ups Rhetoric Against Ankara Mustafa Akyol argues that following a Turkish-American deal allowing US warplanes to use Incirlik Air Base in the fight against the Islamic State, the terrorist group has lashed out at the ruling AKP government.

Ankara Warms to Idea of Political Solution in Syria According to Semih İdiz, Ankara seems to be growing more amenable to a solution that includes the Syrian regime, unhappy about perceptions that it has used the international effort against the Islamic State as an excuse to resume strikes against the PKK.

Why Aren’t Islamists Condemning ISIL? Emre Uslu argues that the reason behind the lack of explicit condemnation against ISIS among Islamists in Turkey is that they use religion as a mean to power, not as a goal.  

Turkey Police Thwarted Against ISIL Abdullah Bozkurt asserts that the government’s crackdown on the experienced pro-Gulen members of the police force has left the country vulnerable to the actions of violent radical groups including ISIS.

Coalition and Early Elections Debates

Coalition or Early Election? Nagehan Alçı examines poll results from KONDA that show the HDP would once again surpass the election threshold in the case of an early election.

The Formulas in the Leaders' Minds (1) - (2) Abdülkadir Selvi suggests that the “restoration government” envisioned by the CHP would lead to attempts to scale back the transformations enacted by the AKP in the past thirteen years.

Coalition Possibility Mümtazer Türköne encourages Prime Minister Davutoğlu to try and salvage a coalition in spite of President Erdoğan's efforts to thwart talks.

The Real Question in the Coalition Talks Between the AKP and the CHP Cafer Solgun says that the AKP and the CHP should work towards urgent and necessary reforms instead of trying to establish a long-term coalition.

Grand Coalition Still on the Agenda (1) - (2) Seyfettin Gürsel writes that the coalition talks between the AKP and the CHP will fail primarily because of the insistence on the presidential system.

The Coalition Government Yahya Bostan weighs the possibility of the AKP and the CHP overcoming their ideological differences, concluding that early elections are on the horizon.

Will the CHP Make Restoration? Erdal Tanas Karagöl criticizes the notion of the “restoration government” advocated by the CHP in coalition talks, suggesting that it will be a regression.

Other Pertinent Pieces

Iran Should Cherish Turkey, Erdoğan's Friendship Evaluating recent developments in Iran-Turkey relations, İlnur Çevik suggests that Iran is unhappy with Turkey’s partnership with the United States in Syria.

Erdoğan's Vulnerability Is His Liability Abdullah Bozkurt argues that Turkish foreign policy under Erdoğan's governance has been “isolating and insulating Turkey by having pursued Islamist ideological goals on the sidelines.”

Turkey's Baby Boom Sends Many Children into State Care Tülay Çetingüleç points out the cognitive dissonance between President Erdoğan's calls on Turkish families to have at least three children and the lack of social welfare programs and employment to support these larger families.

“Fighting Against the Dark”—An Interview with Turkish Activist and Bombing Survivor Ramazan Başar Filiz Çiçek interviews Ramazan Başar, who survived the Suruç suicide bombing, about what took place, who was behind the bombing, and what it means for Turkish politics at large.


Kurdish Politics and the Peace Process

'Barış Bloku'nun ilk sınavı: HDP kararlı, ÖDP var, CHP çekingen! Celal Baslangıç reports that thousands shouted out the slogan “AKP wants war, we will build peace” at the rally organized by the “Peace Bloc,” which consists of around eighty Kurdish, leftist, women, and Alevi groups and parties and is supported by the People’s Democratic Party (HDP).

Siz başlatmadıysanız, siz bitirebilirsiniz… According to Oral Çalışlar, if the PKK wants to prove that it is the AKP government who ended the peace process, it should first stop its attacks and announce that it will withdraw its armed forces from Turkey.

'Suriye savaşları' ve Türkiye'nin değişen 'taktikleri' Ünal Çeviköz emphasizes that it will become more difficult for Turkey to become an actor in the resolution of civil war in Syria if the Turkish state continues to postpone the peace process at home.

Niçin kan akıtılıyor? Nasıl durdurulabilir? Cengiz Çandar argues that in order to put an end to the escalating violence in Turkey, President Erdoğan should give up his “war policy” and the PKK’s Qandil cadres should exert their authority to stop PKK’s armed attacks.

KCK: Savaşın cıkmasını onleyecek demokratik tutuma ihtiyaç var The KCK (Group of Communities in Kurdistan) declared that political negotiations with Abdullah Öcalan should start again in order to prevent Turkey from dragging into war.

Beklediğim yarınlar hiç gelmeyecek mi kızım?.. (1)-(2)-(3) Hasan Cemal argues that “number one responsible person” for escalating violence in Turkey is “the Sultan in the palace”, referring to President Erdoğan’s insistence on early elections in order to bring the AKP into power.

Kötü haberler sürüyor: Umut da bedava değilmiş! Ayşegül Devecioğlu opposes the equation of “the state terror and ISIS terror with the activities of the PKK” and criticizes those who embrace the HDP while marginalizing and isolating the PKK.

Devlet terörü Nazan Üstündağ frames ISIS as a terrorist organization and the Turkish state as a terrorist state while distinguishing the PKK as a freedom movement that has carried out an armed struggle for putting an end to the oppression of Kurds.

31 yıl sonra... Burada akıl yok, izan yok! Writing on the thirty-first anniversary of the PKK-Turkey conflict, Akdoğan Özkan reports that 40,000 people died between 1984 and 2013.

Buzdolabında olan süreç mi, demokratikleşme mi? Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu points out that President Erdogan’s freezing the peace process is triggering Turkish nationalism and ruining the possibility for a democratic Turkey.

"PKK çatışmayı sonlandırmalı" In an interview, Ruşen Çakır argues that it is the PKK who should stop its attacks first.

Kürt kentlerinde "özyönetim" ilanı… As the KCK says declaring self-rule is now only option for Kurds in response to the government’s attacks, Oral Çalışlar examines what self-rule means for the peace process.

Aldatmanın amacı ne? Taha Erdem writes that the prerequisite for democracy and law is not “war on terror,” arguing that Turkey has not done anything in terms of democratization for the last three years.

Robert Fisk Suruç’ta neden yanıldı? Eylem Akçay asks why Robert Fisk failed to analyze the Suruç Massacre, referring to his recent piece, "Turkey-Kurdish Conflict: Every Regional Power Has Betrayed the Kurds So Turkish Bombing Is No Surprise."

Coalition and Early Elections Debates

Koalisyon artık daha da zor (1)-(2)-(3)-(4) As coalition talks between the AKP and the CHP failed, Murat Yetkin reports that Turkey is very likely to go into early elections in six months as President Erdoğan has wanted since the beginning.

Koalisyon yolunu Erdoğan kesti, nokta! Hasan Cemal points out that it is President Erdoğan who blocked the formation of a coalition government and he is the one who pressed the button for re-elections.

‘Yabancı parmağı’ “Not for the future of Turkey, not even for the future of the AKP (because the AKP can reproduce itself by forming a coalition government), but directly for the future of Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey will repeat the elections,” Murat Yetkin writes.

Tekrar seçimin gizli parametreleri According to Hasan Bülent Kahraman, the AKP will increase its votes in a re-election while the MHP would lose votes because of its opposition to the peace process and its stubborn approach toward a coalition government.

Hükümet Hazine’yi boşalttı Süleyman Yaşar argues that the AKP government emptied the State Treasury and the cost of re-election will increase the budgetary deficit.

14 yaşında AKP Sezin Öney explains why an AKP-CHP coalition has been impossible from the very beginning given the AKP’s discourses and practices for fourteen years.

Sadece ben yönetmeliyim! Yücel Taşkın argues that there could have been a coalition government, but political parties sacrificed the future of Turkey for their short-term interests.

Other Pertinent Pieces

Kentsel dönüşümde suçlulaştırma bahanesine geri dönüş Cihan Baysal Uzunçarsılı examines the criminalization of urban transformation zones from a comparative perspective.

Türkiye’nin Suriye’de PYD’ye karşı aktör arayışı As balances of power are shifting in Syria, İbrahim Genç writes that Turkey is looking for a new actor in Syria, which Turkey could use against the PYD.

Published on Jadaliyya

'What Does the State Want from Dead Bodies?': Suruç and the History of Unmournability

Letter from Rojava

Catismalar arasinda bir akil sagligi denemesi

Ottomanism with a Greek Face: An Interview with Vangelis Kechriotis

A Call from the Women’s Freedom Assembly

Attacks against Solidarity with Kobane: The Suruç Massacre of Young Revolutionaries

A Shift in Turkey's Foreign Policy? An Interview with Osman Shahin                                

Meydan Politics: Taksim in Flux after Gezi

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