SUAT – Dangerous politics

Dangerous politics Turkey’s daily news agenda is tiring, especially in the lead-up to a presidential election.As if that is not enough, all hell seems to have broken loose around us.

From Ukraine and Crimea to Iraq and Gaza, there is shocking pain and suffering all over the region. Thomas Hobbes’ famous description in “Leviathan” seems to have materialized.

There is “continual fear and danger of violent death, and the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” What does all that mean for us mortals living in this country? First of all, we have to confront the uncomfortable fact that our region will remain volatile and unstable for years to come.

Second, we have to think seriously about the potential of violence spilling over into Turkey, as Iraq and Syria are likely to be political entities of the past. The mere reality of the Islamic State (IS) is adequate reason to be concerned and take appropriate measures to prevent such radicals from operating in Turkey.

In view of these external realities, we need to put our own house in order Unfortunately, that seems less likely these days.The Israeli operation in Gaza has once again reminded the world that the Palestinian issue is not dead.

After all, the Arab Awakening has overshadowed the Palestinian issue in recent years, but the massive brutality exhibited in Gaza has brought the Palestinians back to the center of our consciences. God knows exactly what lies behind the Israeli decision to launch this operation, but they have probably unintentionally rekindled the long-forgotten world empathy for the Palestinians.

The images coming out of that operation are beyond all reason and devoid of humanity. The world’s sympathies are once again with the Palestinians on this one.

Turkey’s foreign policy has reached new lows. Our diplomats, their families and our special forces continue to be held captive.

The gag order prevents the issue from being discussed in the Turkish press, but patience is running out for this embarrassing situation. There is little influence Ankara is capable of exerting on the situation in Gaza Ankara must confront the gap between its discourse and its abilities.

Turkey has positioned itself so that it is unlikely to be effective in the region. The government now understands where it has put itself, but it has little room to maneuver Instead, we see the continuation of exaggerated language about its foreign policy achievements.

Such grandiose language continues to feature in Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoIan’s speeches, despite the obvious embarrassments in recent months. Everything is being designed and politically orchestrated so that Prime Minister ErdoIan will be elected president on Aug.

10. The often-touted “New Turkey” is supposed to emerge from this process, but what we see is a transformation into an authoritarian system that aims to protect one person and his family.

Turkish politics is now dominated by one overriding priority: How can we make sure that ErdoIan does not lose power and thereby will escape the court cases against him and his family? How can we shuffle the judiciary so that the possibility of cases against ErdoIan and his ministers will not be able to make any progress? How can we obstruct the graft commission in Parliament so that the public will not hear the details of these ministers’ graft?The world has seen many politicians before ErdoIan who attempted to build a system that would protect them from all sorts of accountability. Few have succeeded.

It remains to be seen how ErdoIan will fare on this dangerous path.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman