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This week's editor

“Mehmet

Mehmet Kurt is this week’s guest editor, introducing the theme, ‘New Turkey and Old Troubles’.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Turkey’s united front against Kurds and democracy

The political success of the Kurds – the colonized – has intimidated not just the authoritarian AKP and ultranationalist MHP but also the nationalist, secularist, so-called social democratic CHP.

The Ala-Turca presidency: old wine in new bottles in the Kurdish case

Erdogan may require a more pragmatic approach to the US and Russia, hence indirectly with the PYD and Assad, to open up space for himself in the region’s politics.

Why Turkification will never work

A country as heteregenous as Turkey can't be held together by an autocrat, so what to do?

The Turkish referendum and Bild

A tale of two deep states?

What went wrong with Turkey’s referendum?

As illiberal democracy is becoming more the norm than the exception in the world, Turkey’s referendum is another missed historical opportunity.

To be or not to be: the future of opposition in post-referendum Turkey

In post-referendum Turkey, it is not just Erdoğan and his supporters but the opposition as well who refuse to recognize their adversaries as legitimate – an explosive formula.

The masses have spoken, but not all hope is lost, for Turkey’s democracy

This inherent ability to cancel itself out is democracy’s paradox:  to “sow the seeds of its own destruction”, succumbing to the electoral will of the majority.

A hollow referendum

Instead of articulating a brand-new direction for the country, the referendum simply served to legitimize and solidify the powers that President Erdogan has held since July 2016.

Badly-timed, ill-conceived and fraudulent, yet Turkey’s opposition could be the one to gain from Erdoğan’s presidential referendum

The Turkish political system will have to reach a new level of democratic maturity, to challenge Erdoğan’s monopoly of office in a way that would bring forward positive change.

The making of a demagogue: how Erdoğan became Turkey's strongman

Ece Temelkuran’s Turkey: the Insane and the Melancholy (2016) chronicles Erdoğan's paranoid style of politics and his lurch into authoritarian populism.

Turkish referendum that is not

Even when it is obvious that a given regime is a dictatorship or a particular election an utter sham, one has to act as if it is not in order to reproduce the democratic system.

Turkey's 'special refugees'

In Turkey's story, the western gaze is searching for new victims. Yes, I fled Turkey with my three year old daughter, but am I that victim?

The passive revolution of Islamists in Turkey

It is sometimes said that theories are fishing nets in which to catch the truth. Let us apply Gramsci’s net to some daily debates taking place in Turkey.

Reconsidering Turkish military culture and secularism after the coup attempt

How did Turkish military culture transform under the rule of AKP? And what will be the impact of the failed coup attempt on the results of the upcoming referendum in Turkey?

Does Turkey’s ongoing purge resemble the 1933 Enabling Act in Nazi Germany?

In both cases, through democratic processes authoritarian rule is imposed on a previously fairly democratic country.

Injustice is the foundation of the new Turkish state

With the media focusing on Erdogan’s April referendum, it is easy to lose sight of, or cover up, the tensions and serious abuses in the Kurdish areas in the south-east of the country.

Time for the west to fight for the exiled

Today’s autocrats are displaying a growing audacity in their willingness to pursuing dissenters everywhere, blatantly disregarding national boundaries in the process.

Dealbreaker: EU migration policy causes more harm and chaos one year after EU-Turkey deal

As we mark the first anniversary of the EU-Turkey deal, the EU’s migration policies are more contradictory than ever, ignoring evidence and by-passing democratic procedures.

The EU’s self-inflicted traps undermine its ability to respond to Turkey’s creeping authoritarianism

European mainstream leaders often forget that the fight against far-right appeal requires a rather more systematic approach, with or without the cooperation of Turkey in tackling Syrian refugees.

The new apathy: emotional break-off from Turkey

Young people are experiencing a numbness and profound disconnect from Turkey. Strict policies of repression and totalitarian changes in the country's constitution threaten to undo Turkish society altogether.

Me, Turkey and our uncertainty

The trial of the Turkey representative of Reporters Without Borders resumes in Istanbul on March 21. Together with the head of Turkey’s Human Rights Foundation and the writer Ahmet Nesin, Erol stands accused of “terrorist propaganda”.

Turkey, sick man of Europe, reappears?

This is not a call for Europeans to do the work on the Turks’ or Kurds’ behalf - but a call to show solidarity with democratic forces of the country at a critical time.

Syrian civil society

The third annual meeting of the Syrian Civil Coalition was held in Beirut on January 27-30 2017. Could a new understanding have come too late?

The Kiron family

We revisit the social start-up that gives refugees access to higher education, meeting a 24 yr.old Syrian beneficiary and a Kiron co-founder, both of whom’s future plans build on this ingenious scheme. Interview. 

The mystery of ‘populism’ finally unveiled

The philosopher of post-Fascism enters the populism fray with his own candidate for post-truth – Left betrayal. Czech.

Erdogan’s mastery of polarization

The Turkish President’s populist leadership draws on the perennially useful Black Turks-White Turks dichotomy.

Turkey: authoritarianism and academic ‘closure’

The regime’s growing assaults on journalists, intellectuals and academics at this particular moment seem aimed at promoting self-censorship ahead of the constitutional referendum in April.

140journos: after the coup attempt

An interview with the founder of 140journos about working in Turkey after the coup attempt, and a call to Europeans to provide a platform for the truth. Part two.

140journos: we´ll do it ourselves, then

How the story of one of the few remaining independent media outlets in Turkey began and kept ahead of the game. Part one.

The Kurdish region since the coup attempt

Especially for the young generation who believes that there is no legal way to gain rights for the Kurdish people, Turkey's government policies will inevitably have tragic consequences.

Occupying democracy

The replacement of democratically elected HDP/DBP mayors and local municipality workers by AKP appointees is a grave threat to democracy in Turkish Kurdistan and the larger region.

A small picture in the big picture of Erdogan’s Turkey

The judicial arm of the Erdogan leadership has decided to make an example of Istar Gözaydin: even the most moderate critics will not be tolerated.

Inside Basmane

Basmane is a district within the city of Izmir (western Turkey), where due to its multicultural heritage and solidarity, many refugees have found safe haven. Photo-essay.

'Populism' and 'counter-populism' in the Atlantic mirror

There are three major lessons for we Europeans in the US presidential elections. They necessarily lead us towards the imagining of a transnational counter-populism.

Make Russia great again? Aleppo and a plea from another world

During the last days of December, Russia will host a round of diplomatic talks with Iran and Turkey.

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