Search This Blog

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Is Fethullah Gulen Turkey’s own Trotsky?

Is Fethullah Gulen Turkey’s own Trotsky?

While the coup in Turkey was still underway, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan knew, with a remarkable degree of precision, who was responsible. He blamed Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric who heads a philosophical movement that promotes interfaith dialogue, and who has been living in self-imposed exile in the United States since 1999.
In fact, the past year has been marked by various kinds of attacks against real or supposed Gulen friends, followers and institutions in Turkey. For instance, authorities seized a bank and media outlets, including the high-circulation newspaper Zaman, and turned them all into state-run services. But this was not just a strike against Gulen and his movement; it was a crippling blow for democracy in Turkey.
By seizing a bank, Erdogan made it clear that no economic activity would be allowed if it is not politically-aligned with his regime. By seizing and closing media outlets, he made clear that press freedom does not exist in Turkey.
The name of Fethullah Gulen was always mentioned before and during all these authoritarian operations. Has it become an obsession for Erdogan? Is Gulen really such a powerful and omnipresent enemy of the Turkish government?

No comments: