IHSAN – ErdoIan’s fear

ErdoIan’s fearI am extremely bored of the fact that we have to keep writing about Recep Tayyip ErdoIan. Nevertheless, since he has unfortunately created a party state without effective checks and balances, in this one-man regime, he is the single-most influential decision maker Thus, whatever he does negatively influences and harms the whole nation.

We are not in a position to ignore this fact or talk about some other issues just because we are bored and fed up with ErdoIan.In the past, we, including myself, were not responsive enough to prevent Turkey from gradually descending into a one-man regime and even unintentionally helped him create such a system since we did not criticize him timely, properly, harshly and frequently enough.

Maybe this is a spiritual punishment that we have to suffer I made an apology at the beginning of the year for all these mistakes of mine, including my failure to object to the arrests of journalists.Even though I started criticizing him and the Justice and Development Party (AKP) around 2009-2010 in this column, in retrospect, I now see that I was very gentle, polite, compromising and naandiumlve.

When he was giving orders for the arrests of journalists, writers, thinkers and even a football club chairman, we thought the country was cleansing itself of the shackles of its militarist past.In a polarized nation when almost all White Turks, with their very influential ideological apparatuses, were trying to prove that the Ergenekon cases were fully fabricated, we failed to firmly object to the mistakes of the judicial system while trying to save the Ergenekon cases.

It is now too late but it is now obvious that ErdoIan was using all these cases and abusing us democrats to simply get rid of his formal and informal checks and balances. There is now too little that is left in terms of checks and balances.

His only fear is the remaining check and balances and that is why he could not arrest the editor of Turkeyand#39s largest daily even though he desperately wanted to do so.What are these remaining check and balances? Forget Parliament.

It is under his full control as I have explained before. You can disregard the judiciary as well since he has started shuffling around superior court judges and prosecutors.

Forget the media The DoIan, Haberturk, Iahenk and Ihlas media groups have succumbed to his illegitimate will and cannot criticize his regime. All state TV channels (the Turkish Radio and Television Corporation [TRT]) that are very influential among his rural and conservative voters are his mouthpieces.

Moreover, he has several TV channels such as ATV and newspapers such as Sabah, AkIam, Star and Yeni Iafak. He is now planning to confiscate the Samanyolu TV group and Zaman newspaper group.

What is left is the Constitutional Court. But half of the members were appointed by Ahmet Necdet Sezer and I do not think they are true democrats and ErdoIan might have a bargain with them The other half were appointed by Abdullah Gul and if needed, ErdoIan can negotiate with them by offering Gul some prestigious positions.

When the current president of the court, HaIim KIlI, retires in March, the court will be more open to ErdoIanand#39s influence. Even now, the court was afraid to give a verdict on the prep schools law and on ErdoIanand#39s new special courts, which arrested Hidayet Karaca but totally eliminated the Dec.

17-25 corruption cases. I am not hopeful about our Constitutional Court.

ErdoIan still fears the army. He has been empowering the police and the national intelligence agency but if riots start, the army may decide to step in if people, similar to the 1970s, start feeling that the ErdoIan regime is incapable of stopping violence on the streets.

This was a fear that ErdoIan and his men had during the Gezi Park protests. God forbid, if a coup takes place, I am one of the first ones who will seriously suffer The Hizmet movement along with all civil society groups, including Kurdish ones, will suffer too, similar to previous coups.

We must do whatever it takes to prevent such a scenario.So what is left? Despite his harangues and belligerent rhetoric against the democratic West, ErdoIan knows very well that he still needs Western support to prevent the collapse of the Turkish economy.

The West taught Vladimir Putin a lesson and ErdoIan too has learnt a lot.This is currently his only fear before he fully andldquoPutinizesandrdquo or even andldquoAssadizesandrdquo the country.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman