[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 firstname.lastname@example.org by Sunday night of every week.]
How Does the AKP Pick Its Candidates? Mustafa Akyol argues that loyalty and obedience to President Erdoğan, rather than any political merit, have been the primary criteria by which the AKP has selected its candidates.
Political Tension Rising in Turkey Semih İdiz claims that recent violent events in Turkey have been instrumentalized by the AKP in the run-up to the election and argues that Erdoğan is too volatile to lead Turkey.
How Will Turkey Explain $4.3 Billion in Unidentified Foreign Currency? Commenting on the unprecedented amount of foreign currency held by the Central Bank during election cycles over the past ten years, Zülfikar Doğan speculates about who might be behind this influx and who might be making a profit at a time when the lira is losing value.
Two Parties to Take Part in Elections: Old Turkey and New Turkey Markar Esayan suggests that the opposition parties represent the status quo of old Turkey while the AKP represents new Turkey.
Elections Are Too Important for Erdoğan to Be Left to Davutoğlu According to Murat Yetkin, the AKP’s success in the election still hinges upon Erdoğan’s cult of personality, which will continue to overshadow Davutoğlu as the election approaches.
Controversies around the Armenian Genocide
Turkey Angered by Pope`s Use of `G-Word` Cengiz Çandar writes about how the Pope’s comments on the Armenian genocide are being used by the AKP to drum up nationalist sentiment for the election.
Pope Francis Is Playing with Fire (1) - (2) Criticizing Armenians for being “obsessed with getting the world to call the events of 1915 an act of genocide,” İlnur Çevik accuses the Pope of supporting religious extremism.
AKP Readies Diversion as Genocide Anniversary Nears Kadri Gürsel describes the AKP’s stance on the Armenian genocide as a “twilight zone—a state of ambiguity in which it recognizes its Armenian problem but fails to face up to it properly.”
What Does the Armenian Diaspora Want? Pınar Tremblay examines how the Armenian diaspora is imagined by the Turkish government as a unified, global anti-Turkey lobby, and interviews a number of members of the diaspora in differing national contexts.
The Statement of Condolences and Potential Reconciliation Kılıç Buğra Kanat argues that Erdoğan and the AKP have made good-faith efforts to facilitate reconciliation with Armenia, but that the Armenian government has not responded to their invitations to dialogue.
How Can the European Parliament Know About Armenians, Turks, or History? Claiming that the Armenian diaspora aggressively lobbied the European Parliament to recognize the Armenian genocide, Yasin Aktay asserts that European parliamentarians have misunderstood and misrecognized history.
Q&A: Turkey Looks beyond `Armenian Genocide` Debate Umut Uras interviews Etyen Mahçupyan, chief adviser to Prime Minister Davutoğlu and of Armenian descent, about the historical as well as future place of Armenians in Turkish society.
`War` Has Been Declared on Turkey! According to Yusuf Kaplan, the statements from the Pope and the European Parliament constitute the beginning of a new Crusades and Inquisition directed against Turkey by the West.
1915 Statement by Pink Armenia and Kaos GL A joint statement by two LGBTI organizations in Turkey and Armenia, respectively, commemorating the genocide and pledging to work together to fight against homophobia, transphobia, racism, and nationalism.
A Century After Armenian Genocide, Turkey`s Denial Only Deepens Tim Arango examines the ambiguous legacy left in Turkey by the deportation and genocide of the Armenians, and the ways in which global efforts at commemoration are a source of anxiety for the Turkish government.
Beyond the Genocide Debate Verda Özer describes the “vicious cycle” of hostility between the Armenian diaspora and the Turkish government and argues that it is important for ordinary people to question their paradigms.
Military Operation in Ağrı
What Actually Happened in Ağrı? Murat Yetkin speculates about whether the PKK-military skirmish in Ağrı was a political ploy and argues that it raises concerns about security and freedom in the leadup to the June election.
Is The Ceasefire Being Suspended? Mehmet Y. Yılmaz wonders what impact the political consequences of the events in Ağrı will have on the election and on the peace process.
Changed Perspective on Security of the Reconciliation Process Yahya Bostan claims that the PKK is fighting an “armed electoral campaign” on behalf of the HDP, causing events like the clash in Ağrı.
What Do the PKK and HDP Want? According to Markar Esayan, the events in Ağrı are a clear indication that the PKK and the HDP are not genuinely committed to the peace process.
Violence, Ballots, and Democracy Osman Can suggests that the AKP has as much legitimacy in the eyes of the Kurds as the HDP because the HDP is working alongside PKK to achieve its goals.
A Gun in One Hand, Politics in the Other Abdülkadir Selvi argues that the PKK is the biggest obstacle facing the HDP’s efforts to surpass the election threshold.
Selling Peace in the West, Selling War in the East Markar Esayan claims that the HDP, CHP, and MHP are all working together to destabilize Turkey’s political environment, and that the Ağrı clash is an example of their conspiracy.
Turkish Soldiers Target Villagers` Mules Metin Gürcan writes about how the Turkish Armed Forces have started to kill the mules of Kurdish villagers in order to crack down on unregulated trade across the Iraq-Turkey border.
AKP Promises No New Page on Foreign Policy According to Serkan Demirtaş, there are contradictions in the AKP’s election manifesto that illustrate the party is not addressing long-standing concerns about its foreign policy.
Controversies around the Armenian Genocide
Obama da Papa gibi "soykırım" diyecek mi? “Will Obama also call it `genocide` at the expense of risking Turkey’s cooperation with the US on Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Incirlik military base? Or will he make new political and military demands from the President Erdoğan?” asks Murat Yetkin.
Papa`ya yakışmamış, ama size yakışıyor Criticizing Prime Minister Davutoğlu’s statement that Pope Francis should have called for peace instead of baseless accusations which incite hatred and revenge, Ümit Kıvanç argues that the Turkish state still continues to lie about the Armenian Genocide.
Sen de mi eey Papa! İhsan Çaralan points out that Pope Francis` naming of the slaughter of Armenians in 1915 as the first “genocide” of the twentieth century ignited a diplomatic confrontation among both by the AKP government and the main opposition party, the CHP.
Türkiye soykırımı inkârla nereye varır? Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu suggests that Turkey can show no progress, but only save the day with populist policies, unless it ends its denial of the Armenian Genocide.
‘1915’in tümüyle tarihçilere bırakılması anlamlı değil’ In an interview with Emre Can Dağlıoğlu, Şükrü Hanioğlu argues that “let’s leave history to historians” is a highly problematic rhetoric that forecloses the recognition of the 1915 Armenian Genocide.
Military Operation in Ağrı
İktidarı kaybetmemek için herşeyi yaparlarsa… Commenting on the Turkish military’s operation near Diyadin township, where the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) had organized a “spring festival,” Cengiz Çandar argues the operation was the AKP’s provocation to increase the HDP’s votes by drawing a violent picture of Kurds.
AKP-HDP meydan muharebesine hoş geldiniz! Emphasizing that Kurds have always celebrated the spring festival, Ezgi Başaran argues that military operation just before the elections was in fact the AKP’s plan to prevent the HDP from passing the ten percent electoral threshold.
AKP`nin Ağrı`sı According to Mustafa Ünal, the ruling AKP government is instrumentalizing the deadly consequences of the armed conflict in Ağrı in order to remain in power in the upcoming elections.
Baraj için HDP`yi açığa düşürmek çözüme uygun mu? Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu argues that the government is jeopardizing the peace and resolution process by provoking violence in the region.
`Başkan`lık yoksa, huzur da yok! According to Celal Başlangıç, the military operation in Ağrı reveals that the AKP is not ready to leave power.
‘Faili belli’ provokasyonlar ülkesi! Mete Çubukçu emphasizes that the AKP is throwing away the peace and reconciliation process because of its short-term interests in the June elections.
Censorship at the Istanbul Film Festival
Tarihi sansüre direnenler yazar! Yekta Kopan accuses the government of forcing the festival organizers to withdraw a Kurdish documentary, titled Bakur (North), from the Istanbul Film Festival’s program.
`Bakur`un hikâyesi: Dağlarda nasıl çekildi, nasıl sansüre uğradı? Bakur’s co-director Ertuğrul Mavioğlu’s letter explains how they shot the documentary in the mountains where Kurdish guerrillas live, and how the documentary was censored by the government.
Sansüre karşı 12 Nisan dayanışması Övgü Gökçe reports that dozens of Turkish and Kurdish film-makers have withdrawn their films from this year’s Istanbul international film festival in order to protest growing censorship.
Belgesel korkusu: Documentaphobia “Why is a state/a government afraid of a documentary?” asks Necati Sönmez.
#Bakur: Kürtler de bize bakıyor! Neşe Özgen emphasizes that Bakur was censored because it reveals intimate moments from within the guerilla life, which has long been rendered hidden, illegal, invisible, and muted.
Sansürün görünür kıldıkları Şenay Aydemir suggests that the censorship over the documentary Bakur reveals the broader problems that independent filmmakers in Turkey experience.
İstanbul`un orta yeri sansür As Bakur brings guerillas from the mountains to our screen in the middle of Istanbul, the hyper-visibility of guerillas in a public, urban space poses a threat to the state, writes Kenan Tekeş.
Published on Jadaliyya
Istanbul Film Festival Cancels Competitions Due to Censorship
Okmeydani: A Targeted Territory
The Present and Future of Climate Change in Turkey and Beyond: An Interview with Umit Sahin
Kurdish Alevi Music and Migration: An Interview with Ozan Aksoy