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Turkey

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

[Massive influx of Syrian Kurdish refugees into Turkey. Photo by European Commission DG ECHO via Flickr]

Last week, Turkey joined the fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), after the group carried out a suicide bombing in the town of Suruç close to the Syrian border, killing thirty-two young socialist activists and students, and injuring many more. Following that horrific tragedy, the Turkish government came under pressure to stop the free movement of ISIS fighters and operatives over the Syrian border. Despite the bombing of a few ISIS targets, most of Turkey’s firepower has been directed toward the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK). According to Al-Monitor, “The attack on IS was a single sortie against limited targets and closer to the Turkish ...

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

[Image via grenzeloos.org]

A suicide attack killed at least thirty young revolutionaries in Suruç in Urfa, the Turkish city near the Syrian border, on 20 July 2015. The attack on the Amara Culture Center, where at least three hundred young people affiliated with the Federation of Socialist Youth Association (SGDF) were staying, was committed just before their departure to Kobane. The young revolutionaries had departed from Kadikoy, Istanbul yesterday, presenting themselves as the children of Gezi, the wave of protests that started in Istanbul in June 2013. They were going to participate in the reconstruction of Kobane as revolutionary socialist youth from the west of Turkey. They arrived in ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (July 14)

[Protestor holds East Turkistan and Turkey flags as Uyghur human rights activists participate in a demonstration to protest against the Chinese government's policy in Uyghur, Strasbourg, France, 11 July 2015. Image via Hadrian / Shutterstock.com]

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Post-Election Politics and Coalition Scenarios Did Erdoğan Push the Button for Early Elections? According to Yavuz Baydar, President Erdoğan and the AKP are working as slowly as possible in order to generate the necessary political and legal conditions for an early election. Hope You Enjoy the Show! Bülent Keneş claims that the AKP has ...

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Will the Greferendum Bring A Rupture?: Answers from the European Left

Image courtesy of the author

If you do not expect the unexpected, you will not find it; for it is hard to be sought out and difficult. Heraclitus, Fragments Having participated in the international anti-EU forum just days before Syriza government called for a bailout referendum, Athens was seminal in inciting all smatters to indulge in the day-to-day developments of Greek politics. During the three-day forum, participants were involved in deep discussions about political and economic crises within the European Economic Area, with particular emphasis on the southern countries along with the crises’ impact on left- and right-wing realignments in several member countries, including the ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (June 30)

[Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko during a meeting in Kiev, March 2015. Image via Drop of Light / Shutterstock.com]

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Election Results and Coalition Scenarios Psychological Barrier Bülent Keneş argues that the MHP’s fear of coming to power constitutes a psychological barrier to taking responsibility in a coalition government. The AKP’s New Period and Abdullah Gül Cafer Solgun thinks that expectations that the AKP would enter a process of self-recrimination ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (June 23)

[Border gate in Akcekale, 31 March 2015. Image by Procyk Radek / Shutterstock.com]

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Election Results and Coalition Scenarios The AK Party's Dilemmas Burhanettin Duran claims that the primary challenge facing the AKP is the possibility that party elites will also begin to question the authority of Erdoğan. The Coalition, But How? According to Erdal Tanas Karagöl, the formation of a coalition will lead to a regression of the ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (June 16)

[HDP co-leader Selahattin Demirtaş casting his ballot in Sultanbeyli, Istanbul, 7 June 2015. Photo by Nicholas Glastonbury.]

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Election Results and the Prospects for A Coalition What's Next for Turkey? (1) - (2) According to Cengiz Çandar, the internal strife within the AKP and the seeming impossibility of a coalition that includes the AKP makes it appear to be “a shell-shocked political force in decline.” The Turkish Election Is Turning the Tides Can Candan argues ...

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First Thoughts on the Elections in Turkey: A Roundtable

[Supporters at an HDP meeting, Istanbul, 30 May 2015. Image via Alfonso Ianniello / Shutterstock.com]

On 7 June 2015, Turkey held a general election to elect the 550 members of the Grand National Assembly and form the Twenty-Fifth Parliament of Turkey. Those who have followed politics in Turkey have watched a tense, and even violent, political scene emerge over the past few weeks. The pre-election period was shaped by vehement election campaigns by the vying political parties, as they put forward their agendas. The period was also dominated by debates over the alleged unlawful use of public funds and state grants by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) for its own election campaigns; the state-affiliated media’s partial and biased representation of the AKP and ...

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Refugees in Turkey: Implications of Increasing Politicization

Banners and election propaganda following a Justice and Development Party (AKP) rally in Gaziantep. [Image courtesy of the author]

Migration has long been a securitized issue in Turkey, but with the upcoming parliamentary election on 7 June 2015, this might indeed be the first time that immigration into Turkey has been politicized to such an extent. For a brief moment in 2008, Turkey appeared to be moving away from its security-focused approach to immigration. A representative from the International Organization for Migration (IOM), who asked to remain unnamed, says that this is why Turkey was able to pass Law No. 6458 on Foreigners and International Protection, revamping Turkey’s entire migration and asylum system. While the original incentive for Turkey’s migration overhaul were the ongoing EU ...

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Her Yerdeyiz!

HER YERDEYİZ! 27 Mayıs 2015 Yaşıyorsak ve hala nefes alıyorsak, bilinmelidir ki o güzel çocukların gülen yüzü hürmetinedir!     Herkes biliyor, son iki yıldır artık farklı bir ülkede yaşıyoruz. Havası, suyu,  sesi,  kokusu farklılaştı bu ülkenin. İktidarı, muhalefeti, meslek odası, sendikası, genci, yaşlısı, işçisi, işsizi, Türkü, Kürdü artık farklı… Kabul eden için de etmeyen için de hayat farklılaştı… Bu ülke GEZİ’yi yaşadı. Haziran’ın sıcağını iliklerine akıttı.  Milyonlar şarkılarını dillerinden düşürmeden kararlı ve direngen bir duruşu tarihin içinden geçerek yaşadılar. Cesur yürekli kadınların ve ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (May 26)

[Turkish metal workers on strike. Image by Fatih Pinar.]

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English June Elections Erdoğan’s Chance of Becoming a Super-President is Diminishing Serkan Demirtaş reports that sixty percent of the Turkish public is against the adoption of a presidential system. Political Tension Rising Ahead of Turkey’s Election Commenting on the rising tension before the elections, Murat Yetkin relays that both President ...

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The Armenian Genocide and the Politics of Knowledge

[Cover of Ronald Grigor Suny, “'They Can Live in the Desert but Nowhere Else': A History of the Armenian Genocide

Ronald Grigor Suny, “They Can Live in the Desert but Nowhere Else": A History of the Armenian Genocide. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015. In this centennial year since the Armenian Genocide, countless conferences, meetings, and commemorations are underway across the globe. While they have all been peaceful so far, they come at the end of a century of violence. I refer not just to the events of 1915-17, but also the waves of violence spurred by memory, recognition, and denial ever since. First came the killings, at the hands of individual Armenians, of two of the leading perpetrators of the violence, Talaat and Cemal Pashas in Berlin and Tiflis, ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (July 28)

NOTE: Due to the Turkish government’s censorship of media outlets affiliated with Kurdish and leftist movements, Jadaliyya was unable to access a number of newspapers that are regularly included in the media roundup. [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 turkey@jadaliyya.com ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (July 21)

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Coalition Scenarios The Opposition Bubble Burhanettin Duran finds the opposition parties’ attitudes toward coalition negotiations irresponsible and accuses them of ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (July 7)

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Turkey’s “Buffer Zone” in Syria Turkey’s Syrian Adventure to Backfire Lale Kemal reports that Turkey’s interim AKP government is preparing for an incursion into Syria to ...

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Meydan Politics: Taksim in Flux after Gezi

Political engagement in contemporary democracies can easily be reduced to private individuals voting separately in anonymity. Yet, politics is a state of constant negotiation, preferably where individuals are in each other’s presence to articulate their public concerns. Perhaps, as a physical space, the meydan comes closest in this day and age to what Hannah Arendt calls “space of appearance” in the polis, where being in public is synonymous with politics.[1] Istanbul’s Taksim Meydanı is such a space, a ...

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The Light Bulb and the Oak Tree: Politics of Space Meets the Ballot Box

Browsing the depths of social media for alternative and local takes on politics is not merely a form of procrastination but also, and more so, a great way to learn about unpublished concerns, rumors, and disappointments. And the fact that they are all untamed by political correctness is surely a big plus. Since the 7 June elections that ended the Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) thirteen-year-long single party rule in Turkey, I have been heavily involved in such social media digging, mostly on ...

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New Texts Out Now: Kabir Tambar, The Reckoning of Pluralism: Political Belonging and the Demands of History in Turkey

Kabir Tambar, The Reckoning of Pluralism: Political Belonging and the Demands of History in Turkey. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Kabir Tambar (KT): The book centers on Turkey’s Alevi community—a numerical minority that reportedly constitutes anywhere from ten to twenty percent of the country’s total population. As I was conducting the research for the book, I was struck by the fact that over the past century, the community has been both an ...

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HDP’nin programina evet diyen muhafazakarlar, kadin, Alevi ve LGBTI’lerle esitlige de evet diyor

HDP’nin programına evet diyen muhafazakârlar, kadın, Alevi ve LGBTİ’lerle eşitliğe de evet diyor Bu seçimleri değerlendirirken en önce şunu söylemek gerekir: Kazanan her şeyden önce gönüllü müşahitlik yapan, oyları son dakikaya kadar koruyan, halkın iradesi tam olarak sonuçlara yansısın diye uğraşan, tabandan örgütlenmiş, genç ve kadın ağırlıklı sandık hareketleridirz. Seçim sonuçlarına güvenimiz tam, uzun yıllardır ilk kez ana gündem sandık çalmalar değil. Üstelik bu sandık hareketleri ne parayla, ne ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (June 9)

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English June Elections Why Will AK Party Win Again? (1) - (2) According to Etyen Mahçupyan, the AK Party will again win because its pros outweigh its cons, it is the only party that ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (June 2)

[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 turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English Anniversary of the Gezi Park Protests Is This Your Justice, Turkey? Melis Alphan summarizes the lack of developments in the court cases concerning those who died during the ...

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Press Freedom on Trial in Turkey: A Statement from BirGun

[The following statement and call to action was issued by BirGün, an independent left daily newspaper in Turkey that is being prosecuted for covereage of then Prime Minister (now President) Recep Tayyip Erdogan.] On 2 June, a trial will begin in Caglayan Istanbul Second Criminal Court. Baris Ince, the editor-in-chief of the Turkish independent daily newspaper, BirGün, is being sued under Article 229 of the Turkish Criminal Code for “defamation of the President.” The newspaper printed an acrostic ...

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Statement on the Anniversary of the Gezi Park Uprising

[This statement was released by the Taksim Gezi Park Association in May 2015.] Gezi Park Is an Indestructible Momumental City Park. Come and Breathe Freely Here As the symbol of the great Uprising of Turkey (2013), Taksim Gezi Park is a city park within the borders of Beyoğlu, a historically cosmopolitan urban district in Istanbul. Located between Taksim Square and Elmadağ, Gezi Park is well known as the first park of the Republican Era. ...

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New Texts Out Now: Bedross Der Matossian, Shattered Dreams of Revolution: From Liberty to Violence in the Late Ottoman Empire

Bedross Der Matossian, Shattered Dreams of Revolution: From Liberty to Violence in the Late Ottoman Empire. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Bedross Der Matossian (BDM): I have always been interested in the history of the late Ottoman period, in particular the era of Abdülhamid II (1876-1909) and the Second Constitutional Period (1908-1918). Most of the scholarship about the period in the past has been written from the perspective of the dominant ...

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