Landslide Islamist Victory in Turkey


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Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan and his Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) won a landslide victory in Sunday’s elections. The Islamists won half of the vote, leaving them short of the two-thirds majority they sought in the parliament, which would have allowed them to rewrite the constitution unobstructed. However, the AKP’s huge victory means the Islamists will still control Turkey and oversee the writing of a new constitution.

The election actually results in a slight loss for the AKP. The party currently holds 331 of the 550 seats in parliament, and is projected to now only have 325. The Islamists must win the support of only five non-AKP seats to put up a draft constitution for a referendum. The popularity of Prime Minister Erdogan and his party means that such a referendum is very likely to pass. The AKP may not have the two-thirds majority that would have allowed for a unilateral writing of the constitution, or even enough to unilaterally submit a draft for a referendum, but not much stands in its way.

“Elections taking place today are likely to be the last fair and free ones in Turkey. With Turkey’s leading Islamist party controlling all three branches of the government and the military sidelined, little will stop it from changing the rules to keep power into the indefinite future,” wrote Dr. Daniel Pipes of the electoral results.

In September, 58 percent of Turks voted in favor of a referendum that paved the way for a new constitution. Tellingly, Iran endorsed the referendum. A key objective was to undermine the power of the military that has acted as a vanguard of secularism. It asserts civilian control over the military and increased the power of the president and the parliament over the judiciary. Both the presidency and the parliament are controlled by the AKP.

The Erdogan government’s reforms were welcomed in the West because they make Turkey more democratic structurally, but these reforms have coincided with disturbing crackdowns on political opponents. The government has blocked many websites, including YouTube, without having to explain why. Over 60 journalists have been imprisoned for what they’ve written. Two of them were arrested in March and have still not been informed of the charges against them. As Dr. Barry Rubin points out, the Erdogan government has “repressed opposition and arrested hundreds of critics, bought up 40 percent of the media, and installed its people in the bureaucracy.”

There has also been a concerted effort to decrease the political influence of the military. Over 160 current and former military officers have been charged with involvement in an alleged coup plot in 2003. It has been called the “the largest-ever crackdown on Turkey’s military.” The government claims that elements of the military sought to carry out attacks, including the bombing of mosques. Those arrested have also been accused of planning to foment conflict by provoking Greece to shoot down a Turkish military aircraft. Top officials including the former commander of the First Army and former leaders of the air force, special forces and navy have been arrested. Erdogan’s opponents allege that the arrests are politically-motivated.

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  • Chezwick_mac

    'Currencywidget' is living in a decidedly ethereal realm, where black is white, down is up and, most telling, bad is good. The notion that Erbakan's re-election is somehow a victory for Turkish secularism couldn't be more opposite the truth. He has been dismantling the foundations of Kemalism stone by stone systematically over the last decade. He has used arbitrary police-state methods to create "conspiracies" in which to justify the arrest of senior members of the military establishment. So effective has been his emasculation of the military, that as an institution, it can no longer carry out its function as guarantor of the Kemalist legacy.

    Furthermore, 'Widget' suggests that Turkey's ties with Israel will remain sound, ignoring ample evidence that those ties have degenerated beyond repair. The strategic partnership between the two countries is effectively dead. No Israeli planes will be using Turkish airspace anytime soon to practice maneuvers impossible to stage in the diminutive skies over Israel itself..

    So, just as the secular reforms of Akbar 'the Great' were undone by his Moghul predecessor some five centuries ago, the only other significant secular experiment in Islamic history is once again unraveling. Let the lesson be learned: Islam has no secular legacy…and any suggestion otherwise is as mindless as 'Widget's' rosey assertions above.

    • Fred Dawes

      thank you

    • Chezwick_mac

      That obviously should have read "successor" in reference to Abkar the Great…

      Meanwhile, thanks for the affirmations Jack and Fred.

  • Frank95054

    The United States needs to urgently review its custodial policy with respect to Turkey and special weapons. All US Forces should be immediately withdrawn from Turkey. The West is ignorant of Islam. Every Mosque, in every Country, is preaching the same thing; the commandment to spread Islam by the sword and to make way for the end times Mahdi.

  • jackzeller

    Chezwick, you are spot on…

  • Tanstaafl

    Is it my imagination, or does Erdogan's picture look a lot like an aging Hitler?

    • WilliamJamesWard

      Cross between Hitler and a divorce lawyer…………..William

  • Tamar

    He's going to be a dictator

  • yrd4soundingoff

    What happened to Turkey?

    • Fred Dawes

      what happened to turket the same thing that happned to germany in 1933 its called madness.

  • tim heekin

    Ataturk made one lethal mistake. He permitted mosques to keep operating. Having left the "places of battle" in place the koran will eventually triumph. Muslims will never miss the opportunity to fail. It is written.

    • jacob

      I wrote yesterday on the same statement as yours but my laptop froze and I forgot about it…
      Attaturk made the fatal mistake of not doing away with the Islamic clergy, the most
      ignorant and reactionary the world ever knew or know, compared to which the Holy
      Inquisition with its tortures and "autos da fe" are saints…

      So now the Turkish constitution will be the SHAARIA.

      I guess we must congratulate the Turkish people for their further step into hell…

  • Asher

    What a terrible Religion, I feel sorry for their women who will be treated with unfairness and hatred!

  • Fred Dawes

    "Oh No", the sh@t is going to hit the old fan real soon, This is not good news for any of us, it means the turkish people maybe going mad, and turkey has a big military that is modern and turkish troops are real good in fact the tuekish Army is well known for having some of the best fighters in the world.

  • Amused

    bye , bye Turkiye . And Turkiye can say bye, bye to E.U. membership . If anyone thinks this will benefit ANYONE except the jihadis around the Globe , then they need their head examined . In the meantime someone oughta be thinking about how to get the christians there out alive .

    • Fred Dawes

      The turkish boys own the EU TAHNKS TO OLD GERMANY. I mean for 100 years both have been great friends and had alot of sex, if you know what i mean? See turkish bath!

  • Amused

    A prime example of "stealth jihad " .

  • guest

    No one in the west will admit to the truth: that Turkey is, and always has been, a threat to the civilized world. Even under the secularism of Ataturk the Turkish people were dangerous, he just kept them on a short leash. Now Erdogan, who is ideologically identical to Bin Laden, has let mad dogs off their leash to run wild. We can expect Jihad coming out of Ankara very soon, and a new constitution that enshrines Sharia, violence, misogyny, and all of the other Naziesque things that Muslims like so much. It would be nice if someone in the west would get a clue.

  • Dispozadaburka

    The Muslims are starting to give "Democracy" a bad name.

  • Thomas A. Manning

    Oh Well; Just wait, NATO will come to the rescue ! England will become "Great Britain" again, France will not ignore the threats anymore, and I have some ocean-front property for sale in Arizona. Sappy

    • Fred Dawes

      I think we all are looking at the start of the 3th world war, and that means 6 billion dead and no more fun times for anyone.

  • Mike S

    This is one of the best examples of bait & switch I've seen in ages, well, since Dumbya. The headline reads like Turkey is about to be the next Afghanistan or Yemen. But read it and you find that the 'landslide victory' party actually seems to have LOST 5 seats! In other words, today is the same as yesterday! NO JIHAD or SHARIA LAW! Be afraid, be vewy, vewy, vewy afraid!

    • trickyblain

      I liked how the author laments that the military's political influence is diminishing. Like it's a bad thing.

      Of course, you'll get a bunch of thumbs downs and no rational responce for posting a very logical point.

      • WilliamJamesWard

        OK for a logical point. However it seems that the new military in Turkey
        got religion, just the wrong one. The older Officers are sacked and will
        probably be tortured to death if not killed outright. Turkey's prisons are
        hell on Earth…………Think of the millions of fanatics being armed and
        trained by and up to date military, just great. Turkey has a great deal of
        animosity towards NATO and Europe in general. The next year will be
        if anything most interesting. The military will provide terrorists but like
        on steroids……….The Turkey needs to go back in the oven……….William

  • Wesley69

    Thiis is extremely disturbing. Since Erdogan has been in power relations with the US and Israel iin particular have deteriorated. Without the check the military provided in the past, Turkey is moving closer to an Islamic Republic ruled by Sharia Law. Idiots in the West forgot the important role the military played in keeping Turkey a secular state.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    Turkey has been on the wrong side of things for years, the Muslim Brothehood
    has worked there as assiduously as in Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Syria, et al. Things
    are going to move quickly when the obsticles (loose cannons) as Gaddafi
    and Assad deep six. What the final picture will be is unknown but it will be
    as awful as could be thought of plus some. Israel will need all of the help
    that can be sent, the needs are and will be great. If I was younger I would
    go but will do what I can when I can. The day is darkening………..William

  • guest

    again western bumbling and mismanagement of post war affairs. in a few decades we double crossed all our friends and turned vast lands and populations to supremely evil ideology. if this stupidity is just that,then we are extremely stupid . and if the reason is out top thugs are bought by oil monies then they should be courtmartialled. if we truly “respect” such a monstrous so called religion then we deserve to die as a culture. and finally if we believe we are outsmarting and containing them then we are just eating regular grade bullcrap or lower. we have given them enough thread to hang the whole free world very soon i believe. my what a stupid president and stupider people who voted for this traitor pretending greatness, god save america and canada europe as we know it and australia. and please send some humanity to russia. they are dead as wooden planks specializing in aiding aggressors and vetoing the free world. the rest are busy drinking and looking for hooker jobs since russia degenerated into a thug state from being a thug empire

  • http://widget.fx-exchange.com/ currencywidget

    The landslide victory of Erdogan's Islamist party is merely the latest event (out of a long list of events) signaling that Turkey has been gravitating towards Iran for at least some time. I don't see this election as fundamentally ground-breaking so much as a continuation of a trend in which antipathy towards the West in general and Israel in particular is becoming increasingly pronounced.

  • popseal

    Because of the West's ignorance or naivete', it may be the free world's best hope for Shi' ites and Sunnis to turn against each other. The Obama ilk will surrender before standing against Islamization.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    The Islamic take over of Turkey did not occur without a lot of coordination and outside help and assistance from outside forces in the way of hundreds of billions of dollars being pumped into the Turkish economy from Saudi Arabia, the Gulf States, and Iran to prop up the Turkish economy in order to make Erdogan and his AKP very popular inside Turkey and to enable them at the same time to impose Sharia and return Turkey back to the Dar al Islam.

    In other words, Erdogan and his AKP are in reality stealth jihadists and this process of re-Islamizing Turkey is an example of stealth and deceptive jihad in action of the kind that our federal government and our military unfortunately are completely oblivious of, as like fools they are completely transfixed only on terrorism, which really isn’t even terrorism but instead violent jihad.

    They are Palestinians in resistance, fighting for their own land.”

    In other words, they are so-called Palestinians fighting in “jihad” and fighting to return Israel to the Dar al Islam, as the word “resistance” is actually a code word for the word jihad. Hence, when someone says, “I support the resistance against Israel,” what they really are saying is that they support the perpetual and permanent genocidal jihad of conquest being waged perpetually against the Jewish unbelievers in Israel. However, a lot of useful idiots that support the “resistance,” really jihad, are so stupid that they don’t even realize that they are supporting a jihad or that they too are targets of the same jihad that targets the Jewish unbelievers in Israel.

    The extremist IHH group behind the ambush of Israeli soldiers has strong ties to the Erdogan government and the AKP.

    Please remove the word extremist and replace it with the word Islamic, because it is orthodox mainstream Islam that is at war against all unbelievers and not some fictitious and non-existent radical or extremist Islam that doesn’t even exist.

  • http://www.western-armenia.org Michael

    Looks like Last 3 years only, Israel knowing who are Turks in gerneral and who is Radical Muslim Erdogan.. Hope Israeli newspapers continue writing the facts about
    Erdogan's radicalism and to write openly , what turks done to Armenians during 1915-1923…