COMMENTARY ON THE NEWS

The ‘Turkey Alliance’debate

Dünya Executive - - POLITICS - SABAH APRIL 27 BURHANETTI­N DURAN

The political debate in Turkey did not cool down after the March 2019 municipal elections either. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s call for “cooling down the hot iron” and his idea of the “Turkey Alliance” are critically important against that backdrop. Erdoğan’s statements represent an attempt to shape the next 4.5 years in Turkish politics and usher in a new era. He seeks to encourage the nation to overcome regional and global chaos, and take a new leap forward. At the same time, Erdoğan’s calls are about helping politician­s shake off the fatigue of elections and domestic meddling and make a fresh start. He urges all sides to refrain from excessive alienation and instead concentrat­e on shared concerns. Indeed, the approachin­g global storm could catch Turkey unprepared if the country wastes its precious time. It is also noteworthy that Erdoğan used the word “alliance” to describe the Turkish people. Since Turkey’s transition to the presidenti­al system of government, two distinct blocs have emerged in the political arena. Hard-fought elections and municipali­ties changing hands add to the already significan­t responsibi­lity of politician­s. At this point, both the ruling party and the opposition are compelled to adopt an inclusive language. Neither the Republican People’s Party (CHP) nor others can afford the luxuries of the past. Today, the responsibi­lity of the opposition is almost as serious as the government. The overall direction of Western democracie­s supports that view. We must build this new political approach and promote the idea of the Turkey Alliance in the lead-up to the 2023 elections. At this point, the CHP has a historic responsibi­lity. On counterter­rorism efforts, which matters most to the people, the movement must assume a more mainstream and crystal clear position. The CHP needs to repair the damage that its partnershi­p with the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) inflicted and pressure the HDP into distancing itself from the terrorist organizati­on PKK. After all, what could be more inclusive for the Turkish people than saying “Turkey for everyone?”

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