On Trump’s new approach to the US-Turkey relationship

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“ By way of compensation, the US is expected to offer deeper intelligence cooperation with Ankara against Kurdish militants in Turkey and in Iraq. And Trump has already made clear he will not let Obama-era opposition to Erdoğan’s creeping authoritarianism become a hindrance in the bilateral relationship. He formally congratulated the Turkish president on winning a referendum amending the constitution to give him more power ”

Julian Borger, ‘Trump relying on charisma to bridge old divides on first foreign trip’, The Guardian

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On the global crisis’ dangerous consequences

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“ Jihadism and ethno-nationalism are expressions of crisis on a global scale, in an era in which many young people’s lives are marked by a sense of uncertainty – the increasing lack of social and financial security that is characteristic of neoliberalism and globalization. Political and economic insecurity inevitably translates into insecurity in people’s everyday lives, from lack of access to welfare to the increasing lack of security in the workplace. The tendency to create inward-facing, exclusive, and even aggressive identity groups stems from this sense of insecurity and self-righteousness in a world where people feel that there is no place for them, and that their futures are uncertain (…) The peaceful world order risks falling apart because of our fears – and our desire, built on delusion, to restoring a simpler time. But this simplicity is a rejection of pluralism, and away from democracy towards authoritarianism. This is the world of our contemporary caliphs: Putin, Erdoğan, Modi and Trump, and the many other leaders of populist parties waiting in the wings. This does little to confront the real economic, social and environmental issues which are the greatest threat to human flourishing – and often deliberately exacerbates those threats so as to create more fear, and so more acolytes ”

Deeyah Khan, ‘How do we combat radicalization? Offer young men hope and security’, The Guardian

On how Erdogan used the coup d’etat to justify the oppression of opposition

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“ What has transpired since is well known: an unending ‘state of emergency’ and a massive purge within all state apparatuses, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his AKP presenting themselves as strongmen all the while. At last count, around 134,000 people had been dismissed from public service; upwards of 100,000 had been detained; roughly 2,100 schools, dormitories and universities had been shuttered; more than 7,300 academics had lost their jobs; 149 media outlets had been shut down; and well over 200 journalists had been arrested. While initially the purges were mostly directed at real or alleged Gülenists, the attacks quickly broadened to include all oppositional elements, including the Left in the broadest sense: i.e. persons even loosely associated with the Kurdish movement, leftist Kemalists, and Turkish socialists ”

Guney Isikara & Alp Kayserilioglu & Max Zirngast, ‘Voting on Dictatorship’, Jacobin Magazine

On the polarization of the factions voting in the Turkish referendum

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“ The vote will cap two months of campaigning that has further polarised a divided country still reeling from a coup attempt in which 265 people were killed and hundreds injured, frequent terror attacks and the impact of the ongoing civil war in neighbouring Syria. The run-up to the vote has been marred by divisive rhetoric and accusations on both sides that have amplified the splits within society. Supporters of the government have equated those who will vote no on the constitutional amendments with terrorist groups, and opposition campaigners have accused those who will vote yes of abetting fascism and dictatorship ”

Kareem Shaheen, ‘Turkey prepares for tight vote that could strengthen Erdogan’s grip on power, The Guardian

On Erdogan’s oppressive rule

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“ This is not rule of law. This is undermining the law. The government is saying if you oppose the regime we are planning to plant in Turkey, you will find yourself in prison and we will isolate you from the outside world (…) Democracy means plurality. The concept of plurality is being abolished with these actions against newspapers, and Turkey is being put in a position where there is only one voice ”

Baris Yarkadas, member of the Republican People’s Party (CHP)