[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.]
Turkey and the World
Why hasn't the EU lifted travel ban on Turkey? The European Union has recently decided on a list of ‘travel-friendly’ countries, to slowly reopen in the aftermath of the COVID-19 emergency. The decision to exclude Turkey, argues Cengiz Çandar, “seems to have more to do with political disagreements rather than public health concerns.”
Is conflict between Turkey and France looming?Daily Sabah columnist Emre Gönen looks at recent tensions between Paris and Ankara. “Both countries, in the long term, do have a mutual interest to cooperate and find a viable, sustainable modus vivendi,” he argues. “Otherwise, I can foresee two big losers in this conflict – one is France, the other is Turkey.”
Skulls and bones: Algeria’s martyrs and France’s message to North Africa. According to Yeni Şafak columnist Zekeriya Kurşun, “the finalization of the negotiations regarding the return of the Algerian martyrs killed by the French during the occupation years is no coincidence. France is giving two messages. It is trying to say it wants to turn over a new leaf in North Africa. It is using the martyrs’ skulls to reiterate its oppression, injustice and colonial culture. Signing off with the reminder that it can resort to the same methods.”
Lost treasures brewed fresh at Turkey's first coffee museum. “An enchanting array of the classic Turkish and regional beverage is there for the tasting in a unique coffee museum,” writes Pınar Tremblay. Semih Yildirim, the owner of the new Kahve Muzesi, took Al-Monitor on a virtual tour.
An Ancient Valley Lost to ‘Progress.’ New York Times’ Istanbul bureau chief
Carlotta Gall and photographer Mauricio Lima report from Hasankeyf, where the project to build a new dam, discussed for a long time, has “flooded an archaeological gem and displaced thousands of families.”
Do all lives matter in Turkey? Commenting on a number of articles published in Turkey in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd, journalist and lecturer Serkan Aydın argues that it is necessary to “examine the past injustices meticulously and endeavor to do our best to reduce inequalities,” yet that “the past two decades could be deemed as a golden era for minority communities.”
Why we return to folk music in Turkey. “If you’ve ever sat with friends drinking rakı, you’ve probably noticed how the music changes as the night progresses,” writes Kenan Sharpe. “However much the world changes, we will always have a need for songs that express the meaning of love, infatuation, mortality, and loneliness in the simplest terms possible.”
Erdogan Should Not Erase Turkey’s Christian Past. Richard V. Reeves and Mustafa Akyol comment on the recent dispute over the fate of Hagia Sophia. “Destroying its dual Orthodox-Islamic heritage,” they argue, “would be a blow to religious pluralism and tolerance.”
Turkey's "woke" Generation Z haunts President Erdogan. “Recep Tayyip Erdogan is seeking to win over the millions of young Turks who will soon be of voting age. Yet many of the country's youth are in rebellious mood and openly reject him and his policies,” argue Sinem Özdemir and Daniel Derya Bellut.
Down but not out: Turkey’s HDP as kingmaker? freelance journalist David Lepeska talked to Güneş Murat Tezcür on the perspectives of the pro-Kurdish HDP. With many members jailed and most municipalities it won taken over by state-appointed officials, the party has faced in the last few years increasing difficulties. Nonetheless, it could still be Turkey’s kingmaker.
Sosyal medya rezaleti. Following alleged insults directed at his daughter and son-in-law when they announced the birth of their fourth, President Erdoğan vowed to regulate social media. “Personally, I support all measures to be taken by the state,” Hasan Basri Yalçın, SETA Director of Strategic Studies, writes on Sabah. “Twitter should be banned unless it opens an office in this country. This too is a way to fight terrorism and disorder.”
Twitter'ı arkasına almayan yorulur. Criticizing the intentions of the government regarding social media, Karar columnist Akif Beki asks, “Will millions that are making good use of it be punished because of the abuses of a few? Will their rights be prevented and their freedoms restricted?”
Halkın gündemi başka, hükümetin gündemi başka. Sözcü columnist Deniz Zeyrek condemns the government, accusing it of having forgotten what is important for the peoples of Turkey, “Neither the bar association, nor Hagia Sophia, or the plans to subdue the social media are the primary demands of the millions living in these lands.”
Çoklu baro teklifinde gözden kaçan detaylar. The amendment to the Lawyers Act in Turkey “is getting quite a lot of media coverage,” Lawyer Hakan Yazıcı writes on Yetkin Report. The conversation is on a political level, “however, there is one detail introduced with the amendment but not discussed much in the media. Still, it may have very important consequences.”
Z kuşağı muhalif mi? Millions of young Turks will soon be able to vote for the first time. Sabah columnist Melih Altınok looks at Generation Z and argues that the opposition is too confident in the fact that these new voters will be inclined to give their preference to parties opposing the majoritarian AK Parti.
Kılıçdaroğlu’nun aklından aday olarak kim geçiyor?HaberTürk columnist Nagehan Alçı comments on an interview that Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, leader of the opposition party CHP, gave to Voice of America. Kılıçdaroğlu argued that Turkey’s president should not be the leader of a party. “At the beginning, Ekrem İmamoğlu was the strongest candidate to fit this definition, but I think the momentum is gradually turning to Mansur Yavas,” she writes, referring to the mayor of Ankara.
The Coronavirus Pandemic
Bu rakamlardan korkalım. Hürriyet columnist Osman Müftüoğlu takes a look at the numbers of the Coronavirus pandemic. “If it keeps going like this, forget about opening schools in September,” he writes. According to him, problems are not just limited to whether to open schools or not and the pandemic will have serious psychological effects on the population.
Turkey and the World
Olağan şüpheliler. Hürriyet columnist Hande Fırat comments on a recent attack against the al-Watiya air base in Libya, where Turkey deployed its aerial defense systems.
Ankara Libya’daki saldırıdan Birleşik Arap Emirlikleri’ni sorumlu tutuyor. Yeni Şafak columnist Mehmet Acet writes that Turkey is holding the UAE responsible for the attack in Libya. “Ankara showed a patient attitude. However, recently, signals that this patience is now reaching its limit and is about to overflow started to increase.”
İdlib sıkıntısı: Daha fazla cihadist Türkiye’ye gelebilir. Looking at a new report by the International Crisis Group, Birgün columnist Erk Acarer writes that the situation of the Syrian city of Idlib might led more jihadi fighters to come to Turkey.
Christopher Houston, Istanbul, City of the Fearless: Urban Activism, Coup D’État, and Memory in Turkey (New Texts Out Now)
CAF Letter on Recent Amendments Made to Turkey’s Higher Education Law
The Role of Diasporic Structures in Crisis Governance During the COVID-19 Global Pandemic
Discipline and Punish: The Birth of New Turkey and the Fate of the Muslim Democrats