Somaliland Patriots News

Turkey's Democracy Died Today... - print


Date:Monday, April 17 @ 08:15:28 UTC


Related imageRelated imageErdogan has not been a conciliatory leader. Instead, he has ruled by stoking ideological, social and sectarian divisions. He has responded to challenges, even peaceful and democratic ones, by crushing the opposition. And he has taken advantage of every opportunity -- and every challenge -- to bolster his power.











http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2016/07/17/14/365CD0E100000578-3693828-image-a-75_1468763816133.jpgTurkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared victory in a referendum over a new constitution that will make him far more powerful, potentially for many more years to come. The result, which the opposition is calling fraudulent, promises to make Turkey less democratic, more bitterly divided and more religious than ever.     

It comes as no surprise that at the last minute, when the counting showed the "no" vote was threatening the thin lead of the pro-Erdogan "Yes" vote, electoral authorities stepped in to announce they would allow unsealed ballots to be counted, in contravention to the rules.     

Already the lead-up to the vote gave enormous advantages to the yes camp, particularly in the form of media coverage. Meanwhile, opponents faced intimidation and the risk of job loss if they publicly voiced their opinions. Now, with the results showing a narrow 51%-to-49% victory for Erdogan, the opposition says the vote counting, too, was marred by fraud and vows to challenge it.  
 
Still, it looks all but certain the President has won a historic victory that will not only transform the country he has led since 2013, but will also create a path for him to remain in office until 2029.   

Erdogan, a charismatic, authoritarian populist with an agenda steeped in Islam, has become the focal point of deep divisions in the country, and this referendum will make those divisions only more acrimonious and destabilizing.   

 Why Turkey should vote No 
With barely half the country supporting his push for more power, and with the three largest cities -- Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir -- voting no, Erdogan will assume his new powers under a cloud of doubt. That sense of insecurity is likely to make Erdogan more, not less, autocratic. 

Erdogan has not been a conciliatory leader. Instead, he has ruled by stoking ideological, social and sectarian divisions. He has responded to challenges, even peaceful and democratic ones, by crushing the opposition. And he has taken advantage of every opportunity -- and every challenge -- to bolster his power. 

No opportunity is greater than the one proffered by Sunday's referendum. The referendum's win approves a new constitution containing 18 amendments that will phase in gradually, turning Turkey's parliamentary system into a presidential one. 

Until now, the President was supposed to be a figurehead, unaffiliated with any political party and without great powers. Under Erdogan, that figurehead role was never real. But the new system will officially transform the ceremonial President into a commanding executive.   

By Frida Ghitis 

Source: CNN  

This article comes from Somaliland Patriots News | Somaliland News
http://www.somalilandpatriots.com

The URL for this story is:
http://www.somalilandpatriots.com/news-15673-0