Taner Akçam writes: Why did they not kill Hrant Dink in front of his house? Or, why did they not kidnap him, kill him and throw his body somewhere, as they did in other unresolved murders? If they had wanted, they would have done each of these easily. But instead of those actions, they killed him in front of Agos, on the street, in broad daylight, before the eyes of everybody. The reason is that they wanted to take revenge on the Armenians by avenging the death of Talat Pasha.
Interest payments are estimated to reach 139 billion Turkish Liras in 2020. This will cause further economic woes. And the newly formed, AKP-cum-opposition camp - composed among others of Ali Babacan - bears its share of the blame.
Besim F. Dellaloğlu writes: The reason why the AKP lost the June 23, 2019 Istanbul election - the first one since its ascent to power in 2002 - had to with the fact that society evolved, while the party remained largely the same. In contrast, the CHP evolved with society.
Şafak Göktürk writes: For a long time, the unwritten rule of engagement between the two sides provided a good enough safety by Middle Eastern standards. Iran would make inroads and consolidate, and Israel together with the U.S. would show the limits of that infiltration. Now, that has changed.
Grand Korçi writes: The income the Turkish state generates from special consumption taxes has now reached the bar of 10 per cent of overall tax incomes. Alcohol is expected to generate around 15 billion Turkish Liras for the state in the year 2019. But do the hikes on special consumption taxes actually lower alcohol consumption?
Musa Özuğurlu writes: Do the names Abdulhakim Belhaj and Mahdi Al Harati ring a bell? Both were rising names involved in the political process that culminated with the fall of Qaddafi in Libya. What will Turkey’s next move be in Libya? Will it transfer jihadists from Syria to Libya? Or find new Haratis and Belhajs in Libya?
Şafak Göktürk writes: Kanal Istanbul was initially pronounced in 2011. In the years that followed, the idea remained mostly dormant, only to be reminded of intermittently to test the mood. It has recently been reignited, in earnest. The leadership has long demonstrated its disinterest in addressing the causes of the current woes and instead chosen to legally, physically and materially reinforce the government’s fortunes. Kanal Istanbul may well be the “coup de grace” in this context.
Doğa Ulaş Eralp writes: Peter Handke is a genocide denier. Turkey’s position to boycott the Nobel Prize Ceremony was righteous. Yet righteousness carries little sway in every day politics. Turkey is a case in point in genocide denial.
The AKP has shifted Turkey’s foreign policy by defining itself as the inheritor of the long-standing Ottoman cultural tradition, alongside its Sunni priorities and its attempts to influence the former Ottoman territories more assertively. Erdoğan has established networks with other Balkan leaders who are encountering criticism for their increasingly authoritarian rule; for some of these leaders, Erdoğan is a role model.
Andrew O’Donohue writes: The hard truth is this: Turkey’s new political parties will not be able to defeat polarization anytime soon. Turkish society, furthermore, will almost certainly remain divided for at least the next decade.
Berk Esen writes: The electoral dominance of populist parties is not irreversible. The AKP’s defeat in the 2019 local elections in Turkey is a testament to the ability of opposition parties to defeat populists through the ballot box despite the uneven playing field. The opposition’s campaign reveals a recipe for electoral success that can be emulated by opposition parties in other populist regimes.
Şafak Göktürk writes: Political leaders routinely resort to an array of foreign policy agenda options to bolster their domestic standing. One particular outcome may be the erosion of the nation’s geopolitical interests as the ruler desperately searches for tentative arrangements with unlikely partners to limit the immediate risks of his miscalculations. This damage progressively deepens the political and economic crisis at home. Even for the authoritarian ruler, the struggle to consolidate support turns into a Pyrrhic victory at best.
Yörük Işık writes: In Syria, Turkey got caught between Russia and America. We are in danger of repeating this mistake in Libya, or worse: finding ourselves opposing both powers at the same time.
Taner Akçam writes: Turkey needs to decide now: Either it will become a democratic country, or it will open the door for more foreign intervention by trampling on all kinds of laws. It will be pressured economically, politically and militarily. If we don't like the U.S. Congress deciding about 1915, let's face 1915 and discuss it ourselves.
Şafak Göktürk writes: President Trump's recent remarks that the Syrian oil fields should remain under Kurdish militia control with U.S. backing are hardly a declaration betraying a bigger scheme to keep regional fossil resources under friendly control. It is instead more of an assertion of continued U.S. presence in Syria in preparation for the upcoming bargain that will shape the country’s new status quo.