Turkey's Path to Democratization: Barriers, Actors, Outcomes

Turkey's Path to Democratization: Barriers, Actors, Outcomes

by Muhammed Cetin


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In this timely book, the author addresses a number of key questions about Turkey's hard road to democratization. Is it still underway? What are the hindrances or blockages? What are the motivations and roles of civil society groupings in this evolving democracy? What is the current stance of and role of the military, given Turkey's recent history of recurrent military coups d'etat? The articles which follow the historical account, and which provide a commentary on contemporary social and political events, were written over a period of three years for publication in the English-language newspaper Today's Zaman and are grouped this book according to theme.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781935295518
Publisher: Blue Dome Press
Publication date: 09/16/2014
Pages: 257
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Muhammed Cetin, PhD, is a sociologist who has taught at a number of universities in the US. While in the United States he worked on a voluntary basis as President of the Institute of Interfaith Dialogue, Houston, TX. He was elected to the Turkish Parliament in 2011 elections from the AK Party but resigned from his party in 2013 protesting the actions of the Prime Minister Erdogan. He is now an independent deputy member of the Parliament. Cetin lives in Istanbul, Turkey.

Table of Contents

Preface ix

1 Historical Background

Introduction 1

The Republican Era: One-party Rule 1

Laicism 3

Cultural Revolution 5

Inönü, 'the National Chief' and 'Eternal Leader' 8

Democrats, 1950-1960 10

Military Coup d' État 13

After the Executions: 1961-1970 15

Military Coup II 19

Collapse of Public Order 20

Military Coup III 22

New 'Order' 23

The Özal Years 25

President Özal 28

Political Islam? 30

'Post-modern' Military Coup 31

Crash and Corruption 34

The Return of Ecevit 36

Implications of the Historical Background 38

Conclusion 43

2 Fostering Civic Society and Democratization

Civil Society and Civic Organizations 45

Economic and Social Crises and Disintegration 48

Turkey and the Transition to Democracy 51

Role of Civil Society in Turkey's Judicial Reform 54

Civil Society, Education and 'Masters' in Turkey 57

New Turkish Generals and the Greatest Good 60

Fostering Democratic Character: Cooperation or Forced Compliance? 63

3 Obstacles to Democratization

Hegemony or Democratic Participation? 67

Creek Protests and Turkish Provocateurs 70

How to Be an Americanist 73

Censorship or Freedom of the Press in Turkey 76

Polemical Journalism and Its Consequences 79

Infotainted Infotainment 82

Kurds and Journalists, Real and Symbolic 85

Harassing the Press in Turkey 88

Coups in Turkey: None So Blind 91

CHP: Institutionalization vs. Personality Politics 94

Totalitarianism, Complicity and Turkey's Future 97

Bags of III Will from the Turkish Naval Base 100

Unsolved Killings Block Peace and Democracy in Turkey 103

Where Have You Been All These Years? 106

4 Constitutional Reform and Barriers to Reform

New Draft Constitution, Third National Program and Opposition 109

Burn the flag + Respect the Flag = 'False Flag' Anyway 112

Deceit, Betrayal and Nihilism of Coup Makers and Helpers 115

The Paradox of Judicial Independence and Accountability 118

Democracy: How to Participate and How Not to 121

The Left Does Not Do Right in Turkey 124

Turkey from Negarchy to Democracy 127

Civil-Military Relations, 'Regime' Stability and Democratization 130

Turkey's Democratization Knocks at Junta's Bedroom Door 133

Military-Bureaucratic Shadow Falls Over Democratization in Turkey 136

To Reform the Judiciary in Turkey 139

Above and Beyond the Law: No Reform for the Turkish Judiciary 142

Crises and Accountability: Civil, Military and Judicial 145

Civilian and Military Readiness after the Referendum 148

5 Conflict and Its Resolution in Southeast Turkey

A Brief History of Turkey's Conflict in the Southeast 151

The Robber and the Merchant 154

Talking Conflict Resolution in Southeast Turkey 157

Conflict Resolution in the Southeast: A New Kind of Listening Post 160

The Kurdish "Issue": Trapped between Two Deep States 163

PKK Cease-fire: Unmapped and Unverifiable 166

The Education Boycott and Pseudo-Civil Society in Turkey 169

Kurds and Turks: No Singular Solution 172

6 International Perceptions

Foreign Policy Rankings and Fethullah Gülen 175

President Obama's Inauguration, the Great State and the Deep State 178

The Turkey-Russia Rapprochement and Its Implications 181

Who Is Radical Anyway? 184

The Unbearable Lightness of Media Being 187

Knowledge and Accountability at Home and Abroad 190

Torture: Breaking the Breaking Wheel 193

Pre-emption and Presumption: Blair and Turkish Juntas 196

Diplomacy, Diplomacy and Diplomacy 199

Cutting through the Fog over the Golden Horn: Perspectives on Turkey 202

A Long and Dishonorable European Tradition 205

The Lion's Share, the Wolfs fate and the Arab World 208

European Security and Islamism: Planks and Splinters 210

7 Faith in the Public Sphere

Madrid Dialogue Conference: How Can Interfaith Dialogue Make any Progress? 213

The UK's Official Shariah Courts and 'Us' 216

Business, Faith and Freedom 219

Obama's Olive Branch 222

Testing Times for Muslims, Americans and Believers the World Over 225

Elections, Religion and the Opposition Parties in Turkey 228

8 The Hizmet or Gülen Movement

Gülen-inspired Schools and SMOs 231

An Example to Curb Terror and Violence 234

Infiltrating or Contributing? 237

Civic Engagement, Success and the Gülen Movement 240


Appendix 1 What Is Deep State or Gang? 243

Appendix 2 Reasoned Decision Revealed: Gülen Does Not Aim at Changing Constitutional System 245

Appendix 3 Special Usages 246

Select Bibliography 251

Index 253

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