Troglodytes in Turkey?

Well it seems that Spain’s troglodytes aren’t the only ones hovering around the EU arena. Turkey’s Land Forces Commander Gen. Yasar Buyukanit might be another case it seems:

As we feared in our editorial on Monday the accusations from the prosecutor that the Land Forces commander tried to influence the judicial process by making statements on behalf of a defendant have been blown out of proportion that could well turn into a full-blown domestic crisis….

The background to this situation is explained here:

The reasons for the tension between the government and the military, which are now rising over Gen. Buyukanit, are briefly as follows:

Erdogan’s presidential bid: Some circles claim that the AK Party leader wants to become president through majority support in Parliament in 2007. But people close to the AK Party indicate that Gen. Buyukanit, who is set to become chief of General Staff this August, is the biggest obstacle to Erdogan’s presidential aspirations. That’s the reason for rumors about Gen. Buyukanit sparked before he became Land Forces Commander and that some circles argued that the AK Party didn’t want to see Buyukanit helm the land forces

Uneasy AK Party members: The AK Party deputies see the presence of Buyukanit — who often inveighs against fundamentalist movements, uses Kemalist undertones in his statements, makes statements contradicting the AK Party’s policies on many issues ranging from Cyprus to northern Iraq, and terrorism to religious vocational Imam Hatip high schools — as a direct threat to their rule. Some AK Party deputies don’t want Buyukanit to assume the post to show the AK Party’s power to everyone. It’s striking that some AK Party deputies say, “He did what we couldn’t do,” referring to the prosecutor that prepared the indictment.

Now from the standpoint of my sparse knowledge of Turkish politics it is hard to tell just what sort of a ‘troglodyte’ General Buyukanit actually is, or indeed whether or not he is a troglodyte at all. One thing however is clear: the balance between military and political institutions in Turkey is far from ‘normalised’ and a right royal battle seems to be going on.

On another front, this article by Ayhan Simsek draws attention to the extent to which developments in Iraq may cast a long and important shadow over Turkey’s EU accession aspirations.

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About Edward Hugh

Edward 'the bonobo is a Catalan economist of British extraction. After being born, brought-up and educated in the United Kingdom, Edward subsequently settled in Barcelona where he has now lived for over 15 years. As a consequence Edward considers himself to be "Catalan by adoption". He has also to some extent been "adopted by Catalonia", since throughout the current economic crisis he has been a constant voice on TV, radio and in the press arguing in favor of the need for some kind of internal devaluation if Spain wants to stay inside the Euro. By inclination he is a macro economist, but his obsession with trying to understand the economic impact of demographic changes has often taken him far from home, off and away from the more tranquil and placid pastures of the dismal science, into the bracken and thicket of demography, anthropology, biology, sociology and systems theory. All of which has lead him to ask himself whether Thomas Wolfe was not in fact right when he asserted that the fact of the matter is "you can never go home again".

1 thought on “Troglodytes in Turkey?

  1. Just a partial update on this post. The EU observer yesterday ran the story:

    The Turkish army’s designated chief of staff has been accused of attempts to frustrate Turkey’s EU accession by plotting a series of attacks on Kurdish targets designed to spark a nationalist backlash.

    A Turkish public prosecutor has accused general Yasar Buyukanit, head of the Turkish land forces, of orchestrating the hand grenade attack on a Kurdish bookshop in the town of Semdinli in the south east of the country, according to media reports.

    Parts of the accusations of the prosecutor were leaked to Turkish papers over the weekend. The prosecutor, based in the the city of Van, has accused general Buyukanit of being behind the attack, which the prosecutor suspects was carried out by Turkish security forces. The attack, carried out in November, killed one person and injured six.A list of 105 potential Kurdish targets including the bookshop was found in a police van after the attack.

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