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Turkish Local Elections 2014 (A Pyrrhic Victory)

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by muhtesem insan, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. muhtesem insan

    muhtesem insan Amateur Revolutionary

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    Turkey had local elections yesterday won by ruling AKP. They won 44% of the votes with more than 90% turnout. So what does that mean for turkey? Here's a -probably highly subjective- analysis of a Turkish citizen for those interested in.
    Turkey has gone in a elections season. we'll have 2 more election in coming 15 months. Political tension was high and the whole nation is politicised since Gezi Park Protest and intensity of this politicisation grow. Nowadays there's not any conversation that doesn't ends up about politics. And this politicisation led to polarity of two (maybe a third) camps AKP supporters, and AKP opposers (Third camp would be Kurds who are opposers but also in peace talks with AKP).
    This polarization led to people unite against AKP -especially between the voters of two major opposition parties-. There had been some online campaigns such as "cut the crap and just stamp it"("Tatava yapma bas geç" in Turkish) to support strongest opponent of AKP.
    AKP's vote is dropped slightly but they won almost every city -with exception of cities in Kurdistan-. But this time winning margin was really small. A city in yalova they won the election with only one vote and in Ankara (Capital and 2nd largest city about 5.000.000 population) it was 27.000 votes(less than 5‰) or BDP won in Ağrı with 10 votes. And there's lots of discrepancies between where first ballots are counted and official records. Net is full of picture of official documents showing these. A copy of official document shows the count results must be hang to the door of the room you voted for public display. And any party representative can have a copy of it. And YSK (Election High Council) publish computerized results via internet for each ballot box. People found these discrepancies and there's been lots of appeals and two districts of muğla province changed from AKP(rulling party) to CHP(main opposition). Ankara is still undecided, according to a acquaintance of my mother's in CHP's istanbul Ctiy council member. CHP will get back Ankara after appeals.
    So what does this results mean for various political movements?

    AKP (Justice And Development Party): This is the ruling islamist party and winners of election. They get 38% in last local election(2009) and 49,8% in last general elections (2011). This election more of a vote of confidence for the government than an election where you would elect presidents of the municipalities. So comparing it to local elections would be a mistake. After huge protest and huge corruption charges ony a 5% drop in this election seems like a victory, but to win this elections Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (Will be named as RTE from now on) polarized the nation and build his campaign on his personal charisma. This polarization led rallying his supporters around him but also rallying of opposition around him. So first time in AKP's and RTE's personal history they took a defensive stance rather than trying to increase their vote. He limited his max vote to 45% and unless there's an extraordinary development he will not be able to gain more votes from other parties. We have first presidential elections coming in August. Turkey is a parliamentary "democracy" and presidents were elected by grand assembly till presidential election crisis in 2007. And this is a two round election if none can get majority top 2 candidates run for second round. And I believe his election strategy in this election cost him the presidency. Any man standing against him will get rest of the votes.

    CHP (Republican People's Party): This is the main opposion oldest party in Turkish politics founded by Atatürk himself is a social democrat party and member of the Socialist International. But in last 15 years or so it's main politics is based on nationalism and secularism. Their alleged cooperation with Gülen Movement caused discontent in their voter base but due polarization of country this had none or little effect. Their votes increased but only with help of MHP supporters (especially in Ankara and İstanbul two largest city). They couldn't win Istanbul again Ankara is still undecided as I explained above. But even if won Ankara this shows they maxed their potential they can't increase their vote without a policy change. And there's no indication that they will.

    MHP (Nationalist Movement Party): Second oppositon and real winners of this election. They increased their votes in almost every city -that their supporters did not vote for CHP-. Voters who left AKP voted them and there's a real chance that they increase their vote even further. It wouldn't be a suprise if they become the 2nd party in next election and greater member of CHP-MHP coalition (my guess for next government).

    BDP (Peace and Democracy Party): Kurdish party with ties to PKK they joined the election only provinces in Kurdistan region. Another winner of this election. They won in every city they won in last election and then won some. And increased their votes in cities they couldn't won. But their votes decreased in some cities that they were already strong such as Diyarbakır(Amed in Kurdish aka Capital of Kurdistan).

    Left(Socialist and Communists) : Most of left in turkey is in cooperation with kurdish national movement (see: Nationalism of the oppressed) more than 10 parties -including BDP- founded a new party called HDP(Democratic Party of Peoples'). Their aim was to becaome a real left alternative to system and loose the image of Kurdish supporters. But this failed, their votes were even lower than general election mostly due to most left in large cities voted for CHP to "get rid of AKP". Turkish Communist Party (which is not a member of this coalition) won a district municaplity in Tunceli(Dersim) Province(which is my home town :D).

    Gülen Movement: They have huge bureaucratic influence but this election showed that their influence on people is exaggerated.
     
  2. r16

    r16 not deity

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    the results are an optimum for the country . Not too high votes for the A-K-P so that they could be ever more pushy "with shielding against the Western pressure" and not too few to start a panic to pass more laws and stuff while they have a parliamentary majority . The Congregation loses the catch of being the "kingmaker" . They made the Party king only through decades American induced State approval to change the State into an Islamist one . The first four "major" parties all increase their votes by squeezing the 15% all the rest of other parties took in 2009 or so to 5% . Only 9 people died , 8 of them absolutely related to become this "village chief" thing ; absolutely no concern on the National level .

    so , why all the corruption charges didn't "work" ? It's the decade the A-K-P has hold power . It's not a Turkish thing , all political analysts bandy about the Stability thing . They have been in power , they represent the State -including its foibles- and people actually know they are unlikely to get anything better overnight . 80% of the supporters of the Party will not be there when it falls , which will be harder it they ever count on the masses of people to "push more" ... Still , it was awesome to watch all those justifications of how Muslims had the right for the Choice to commit sins or how the Goverment deserved to steal things because they were doing so well in governing . All real , all seen on general Media and no rebuking from the Goverment .

    in any case it was the "official policy" under Özal -whose officials knew "how to conduct their business" . As for the election frauds , it's an Ankara tradition ; Melih Gökçek would have never gotten there in the first place had the godlessly secularist Military had raised a voice asking how come lights were going off right at the time votes were being counted -the time being bloody 1990s which is supposed to be the darkest period of Human History ever by the historians of the new Turkey . It was quite heart breaking to see reports from the Congregation that up to 30 provinces -out of 81- experienced such blackouts . This of course means in places in more than 20 Provinces lights indeed went out .

    personal note : "historians of the new Turkey" is a cool phrase , ı should use it as "hysterians of the new Turkey" whereever applicable .

    on a party by party analysis -which is not my forte anyhow- ı would say MHP is the loser of this election . In their attempts to deny a foothold to the CHP candidate in Ankara -a former MHP member- so that his victory in elections could clear his way for an eventual return to fold to run the MHP someday , makes it possible for the A-K-P to work all kinds of stuff to keep Ankara . When A-K-P starts to loose , it will start to loose , Ankara could have made it sooner . MHP has once again forfeited a chance to be in a Goverment coalition in the next term , but then they don't exactly want to be "swamped" out of their extremism .

    as for the Kurds , all people talk of their success which raises certain amount of smiles in places . They got something like 5% (2 or 3 million) votes in their first party , clearly demonstrating the right to demand 50% and get 25% in the "final deal" . Their second party has apparently proved useful in computer glitches where known Leftist neighbourhoods "exhibit" a distaste in the current CHP . As per the Yalova experience above . Where the CHP claims 150+ of their votes in one ballot box were marked for the second party of the seperatists and they got the 1 vote of this seperatists thing got .

    and since these things tend to get read and ı sometimes get a certain headache in re-stressing things and people have not seen the glorious light nor they ever will , there is no Kurdistan . This is a general statement and nothing at the thread starter .
     
  3. muhtesem insan

    muhtesem insan Amateur Revolutionary

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    Kurdistan is the name of region. Like Thrace in northwestern Turkey.
     
  4. r16

    r16 not deity

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    ı don't think there is any reason to debate about the extent the name has been used as a geographic identifier , but there is no Kurdistan nor there will be .
     

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