Turkey: Has Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu (finally) hit his stride?

Summary: although history tells us it would be most unwise to write him off yet, the tide may be turning against President Erdoğan if the opposition can unite and especially if forecasts of an economic slowdown prove to be correct.

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2 thoughts on “Turkey: Has Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu (finally) hit his stride?”

  1. Frank Rettenberg

    With regard to Mr. Newton’s comment that the Turkish economy is highly dependent on capital inflows: lately Turkish official entities have taken out substantial advertising space in major American newspapers recommending Turkey as a friendly place for doing business. I have to see this as a response to the image of a country divided and beset by political turmoil (and hence not a good investment proposition) that Kilicdaroglu’s march for justice projected. It remains to be seen whether the opposition can maintain its momentum and enthusiasm — and the psychological effects they have generated — or whether the march proves to have been an isolated event.
    The slogan “Justice” (Adalet), as Turkish observers have commented, helps to project the CHP as a party devoted to a broader set of principles than mere Ataturkist secularism, and hence can serve as a theme under which other opposition elements might find it easier to unite with Kilicdaroglu’s party. It is also, of course, an obvious dig at the unjust accusations, trials, and incarcerations engineered by Erdogan’s Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi (Justice and Development Party) regime since the failed coup of last July. Whether Turkey’s diverse opposition parties and factions can unite successfully would seem in large part to depend on whether nationalist and Kurdish elements can reconcile their sharp ideological differences. Lately, the leader of the dissident faction in the MHP, Meral Aksener, has indicated the possibility of at least a dialogue with Kurdish leaders, but if reconciliation is in fact on her mind, political realities will compel her to proceed with utmost caution.
    Frank Rettenberg, San Rafael, California

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