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Reply #4: Erdogan leads Turkey - and the Middle East [View All]

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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jun-16-11 10:33 AM
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4. Erdogan leads Turkey - and the Middle East
Situating oneself in a fairly recent decade, if one were to suggest that someday Turkey, a staunchly secularist country, could have an Islamist head of government, it would have seemed a joke. And to suggest that an Islamist leader could as well prove to be the longest-serving leader in that country, second only to Kemal Attaturk, its founder and father figure, would have seemed a macabre joke.

"No way, the Pashas will never allow it to happen." That would be the repartee. The Pashas, or civil or military authorities, are confined to barracks. The results of the parliamentary elections held in Turkey on Sunday need to be put in historical perspective.

Without doubt, the resounding victory by the ruling party AKP (Justice and Development Party) led by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, with a mandate of 50% of popular support is a landmark event. Victory was expected, but not on a scale exceeding the 47% mandate of the 2007 elections.

The heart of the matter is that Turkey is reaching unprecedented heights of economic prosperity and is a land at peace after several decades of strife, bloodshed and chronic political instability. The contrast couldn't be sharper with its neighborhood, which is passing through great upheaval and uncertainties.

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/MF15Ak01.html
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