[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.]
Turkey and the US: State of the Crisis
Why Turkey is a good NATO ally. Commenting on the recent meeting between Trump and Erdoğan and on the issue of the S-400 missile system, Nagehan Alçı argues, “Ankara wants to sit with Moscow and with Washington at the same table as equal partners. The U.S. should trust Turkey to be a good NATO ally and start seeing it as a strong partner, not as a country to be manipulated by Washington's policies.”
Has Turkey turned from a US ally to an adversary? According to Syrian journalist Ahmad al-Khaled “Erdogan’s Turkey never was, and never could be, an ally of the US. Any illusions that still exist here must be abandoned. Without this, Washington is destined to continue to lose to an ally that has long turned into an enemy.”
Turkey increasingly questions U.S. commitments. According to political analyst Dr. Ali Bakeer “the divisions between the U.S. political establishment and the U.S. administration itself are causing confusion and frustration in Turkey.”
Solution of Turkish-American problems postponed. The existing problems between the United States and Turkey will not be fixed soon. According to Yaşar Yakış at least not until the outcome of the impeachment process and of the presidential elections become clear.
Turkey says 200 Syrian refugees returned home. According to Turkey’s defence ministry, the number of Syrian refugees going back to their country is expected to rise.
Freedom of Speech
Turkish court defies higher ruling to uphold verdict in Cumhuriyet retrial. A Turkish court upheld its conviction of twelve former staff members of the newspaper Cumhuriyet. According to Erol Önderoğlu, Turkey representative for Reporters Without Borders, “the trial is now a part of a huge discussion and huge dispute in the Turkish high judiciary.”
Three glass boxes. In an article originally published by Le Monde, jailed author Ahmet Altan speaks against the steady rise of nationalism, “One of the most horrifying questions of humankind determines everyone’s place in society: How much do you like your homeland? Any reasonable objection, any belief in law and human rights will suffice to leave you out of the race.”
Violence Against Women
Istanbul police disperse demonstrators demanding end to violence against women. Thousands of women gathered on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and were met with tear gas and plastic bullets.
Nativism fuels violence against Turkey’s women. Conservative and Islamist groups have started to be increasingly vocal about the Istanbul Convention, writes Sezin Öney. “It is not women stepping back, but the populism that dominates the political sphere of Turkey: nativist arguments infiltrate and dictate political rhetoric and strategies.”
Opposition attempts to change Turkish agenda. “The opposition's most recent moves were intended to slow the momentum that Operation Peace Spring gave the ruling AK Party and stop the government from building on that popular support,” writes Burhanettin Duran, commenting on the debate on early elections and on the CHP controversy.
The latest AKP-CHP row. “It’s such a confusing drama that probably if it was product of a plot, there must be a genius behind. We might not have a Mozart, but a modern version of ‘Abduction from the Seraglio’ might be composed over all that happened so far…” Yusuf Kanlı writes in his column on Hurriyet Daily News.
Imamoğlu warming up for a fight. “Imamoğlu ran his election campaign not on a narrative of fighting, but a narrative of peace. He promised to be inclusive, and he was careful not to target Erdoğan in his speeches. He aimed to grab AKP votes by not targeting Erdoğan. However, now it seems that he is shifting gears,” writes Nevşin Mengü. According to the journalist, the mayor of Istanbul seems increasingly ready to confront the authorities.
The ‘Headscarf Controversy’
Turkey's perpetual 'headscarf' controversy. The "lifestyle" debate does not seem to end, as it rests firmly on the guardianship regime's ultra-secularist practices, which reflected the single-party regime's notion of the "desirable citizen," writes Burhanettin Duran. The columnist accuses the opposition party CHP of still upholding those practices, despite its claims.
Democracy and The Military
Yaşar Büyükanıt, the last Turkish general to threaten a coup. Michael Daventry profiles Turkish general Yaşar Büyükanıt, who died a few days ago. He was the last military man to threaten intervention in 2007.
Erdoğan’ın muhalefetle erken seçim sınavı. Veteran journalist Murat Yetkin comments on the possibility of Turkey going towards early elections, and what this means for the AK Parti. Erdoğan, he writes, is faced by a dilemma: accepting snap elections proposed by the opposition, or being accused by the opposition of running away from them.
The CHP Controversy
Muharrem İnce bombaladı: Bu kumpas CHP Genel Merkezi’nde kurulmuştur. Columnist Rahmi Turan started a controversy that lasted all week, writing that a politician from the CHP had met with President Erdoğan in Ankara and that the president asked him to take control of the opposition party. Days after reporting this, he assured that the politician was Muharrem İnce. İnce denied the accusation, accusing the party of plotting against him.
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu cephesi ne diyor. According to Nagehan Alçı, İnce has made a mistake in targeting CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu over media reports claiming that he met with Erdoğan.
Ancak emekli olunca CHP’li oldu ama çekirdekten partililere taş taşıtıyor… Even if this conspiracy ends up liquidating Muharrem İnce, there is always Istanbul Major Ekrem İmamoğlu in line, “and his ego is not smaller,” argues Mehmet Barlas.
Muharrem İnce topu taca neden attı? From now on, İnce cannot count on receiving the same support from his party that he enjoyed before, contends Sevilay Yılman.
CHP’lilerin kahramanıydı şimdi dalga geçiyorlar. “İnce was the hero of the CHP,” says Mevlüt Tezel. According to the columnist, the mood has now drastically changed, and the former presidential candidate is derided and insulted.
Bu iş kime yaradı? The only name that was not touched by what happened was İmamoğlu, argues Abdulkadir Selvi, wondering if the all debate was a way to “pave him the way” for the future.
İşsizlik... Sakın bu sorunu küçümsemeyin… The government should not underestimate the fact that the youth in Turkey is increasingly desperate about its possibility of finding a job, writes Özlem Yüzak. “Unemployment is a structural problem, and it needs an immediate solution,” she argues.
İş aramasalar işsizlik artmaz! Murat Muratoğlu criticizes President Erdoğan for his comments on the employment numbers, sarcastically commenting that “nothing of what the country is facing is because of him.”
Saray'a CHP’li kaçırma. Melih Pekdemir writes that the CHP issue was enough for the partisan media to forget all the economic and political problems that Turkey is facing.
Dön De Bir Bak Ekonomiye! “We had no idea that the CHP was running the country,” adds Murat Muratoğlu, contending that it seems now impossible to speak of anything else and that all the other topics that were on the political agenda, from the Syrian refugees to the operation in Syria, seem now irrelevant.
Evet, bu para nerede? Emin Çölaşan writes in his column about a possible mismanaging of the money that was supposed to be used for the families of those who died during the failed coup d’état in 2016.
Violence against Women
Vahşeti bitirmenin tek yolu bu düzeni değiştirmek. “Murders and violent acts also have a gender. Women are killed and exposed to violence because they are women,” writes Selin Sayek Böke, arguing that the source of violence is a male-dominated order that needs to be changed.
Politics and the University
İslam’ı kamusala taşımak. in the pro-government newspaper Yeni Şafak, Faruk Beşer comments on the recent news regarding the Istanbul Şehir University. “The passion for power should not lead us to a fratricide,” he comments, expressing the hope that the university will not become a scapegoat for a political fight between Erdoğan and his former ally Davutoğlu.
İktidar ve Şehir Üniversitesi meselesi. Ergün Yıldırım writes that the overwhelming majority of families that decide to send their children to Istanbul Şehir are AKP voters anyway. The government, he argues, needs to help solve whatever problem is there, or risk that those same families will hOld them accountable.
Turkey and the US: State of the Crisis
YPG elebaşı Beyaz Saray’a gider mi? Hilâl Kaplan goes back to a polemics that kept the media busy before the US-Turkey meeting in Washington and wonders whether Mazlum Kobane, the chief of the Syrian Democratic Forces, will soon visit the White House. If this will happen, she predicts, the already strained ties between Ankara and Washington will suffer another hit.
Published on Jadaliyya
Reem Abou-El-Fadl, Foreign Policy as Nation Making: Turkey and Egypt in the Cold War (New Texts Out Now)
Ahmet T. Kuru, Islam, Authoritarianism, and Underdevelopment: A Global and Historical Comparison (New Texts Out Now)
Statements: Several Opposition Groups in Turkey Condemn Turkish Military Campaign in Northeast Syria