Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Erdogan's Turkey is not ally of West anymore

ČTK |
19 April 2017

Prague, April 18 (CTK) - President Recep Tayyip Erdogan used a referendum to cut his country from the secular legacy of Kemal Ataturk and Turkey is not a reliable ally of the West anymore, Roman Joch writes in daily Lidove noviny (LN) on Tuesday.

After the failed attempt at a military coup from July 15, 2016, Erdogan has gained absolute power in Turkey, and the referendum has changed nothing in this. So why did he organise the referendum? Joch says.

Erdogan may want to have a legal immunity for everything that he committed and all that he plans to commit. Or he may organise it just out of pride, or to create conditions for his successor who would complete what Erdogan would not have enough time to do, Joch writes.

He says the new constitution is to turn Turkey from a parliamentary democracy to a presidential system that eliminates the office of prime minister. Unlike other presidential (USA) and semi-presidential (France, Poland) systems, the Turkish alternative leaves out the division of power thanks to which the presidential office is balanced by the legislative and judicial powers, Joch says.

The Turkish referendum codified the present martial law and the presidential system will be similar to that in Russia, he adds.

Erdogan, who gained power in 2002, has had the same goal as Osama bin Laden, an Islamic state, only his methods were more cautious and latent, Joch writes.

In the Middle East, Iran and Turkey may change positions: Iran with its pro-Western young generation will be a great hope of the region, while Turkey is going to be its nightmare. After the referendum, Turkey is not the good secular ally of the West anymore. Erdogan is an anti-Kemal, Joch concludes.

In daily Hospodarske noviny (HN), Teodor Marjanovic says Erdogan has conquered Turkey by dictatorial methods, including the referendum pretending to be an expression of people's will. After the referendum, nobody can stop Erdogan. The only question is what monuments will Erdogan build to himself and how anti-Western he will want to be, Marjanovic writes.

The new Istanbul airport that is to start operating next year, plans to annually check 200 million people and be the world's biggest airport. Does anybody expect that it will bear a different name than that of Erdogan? Marjanovic says.

He says the only way to slow down Erdogan is from abroad. Other countries may obstruct his effort to reach "a final solution" to the Kurdish question, in form of the creation of a satellite state in Syria along the border with Turkey, to which Erdogan could return up to three million Syrian refugees after he would remove all the Kurds from the territory, Marjanovic writes.

Ergodan has achieved nearly everything, except for one thing: a military victory, ideally connected with territorial expansion. This was the thing that Vladimir Putin did in Crimea. And the ruined Syria offers such an opportunity to Erdogan, Marjanovic says.

NATO, the anchor of European security, is crushed by three factors nowadays: the unpredictable Donald Trump who labels it outdated from time to time, the unwillingness of NATO's European member states to send the set financial contributions to their defence, and Erdogan who has recently been working towards a deal on the purchase of the Russian S-400 anti-aircraft system, despite warnings from NATO headquarters, Marjanovic writes.

In daily Pravo, Jan Keller says the developments in Turkey make it clear what are the key values in the Czech Republic.

Respect for individual freedom and respect for different opinions will definitely not be among these values because otherwise Czechs would not tolerate the persecutions and imprisonment of journalists, university teachers and civil servants that have been going on in Turkey for a long time, Keller writes.

It is neither respect for human life because Erdogan openly plans to push through the death penalty nor the right to self-determination, given the Czech position on the Kurdish question, Keller says.

Yet this does not mean that Czechs have no common values. It seems that these values are hypocrisy and cunning: our hypocrisy orders not to see in what direction the situation in Turkey has been developing and thanks to the cunning of our politicians and analysts it will soon become clear that the result of the Turkish referendum was influenced by hackers from the Kremlin, Keller writes.

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