MESOP’S Turkey General Media Roundup (October 2013)

Badiou, Zizek, and Revolutionary Romanticism Markar Esayan criticizes Badiou and Zizek regarding their comments on the Gezi Park uprising.

Reading the EU Call to Turkey Correctly Murat Yetkin asks “what kind of a report would it have been if Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan had not revealed his September 30 ‘democratization package’?”

Turkey on the Long Road to the EU Doğu Ergil, like Murat Yetkin, argues that the package announced by the AKP a while ago has changed the tone of the EU report.

Gezi Protesters Brought Turkey Closer to the EU Commenting on the latest EU report, Barçın Yinanç contends that “the Gezi protesters brought Turkey a step closer to EU membership.”

EU Progress Report Embraces the ‘Spirit of Gezi’ Yusuf Kanlı suggests that the EU found a reason to praise the Gezi protests as a demonstration of Turkey’s emerging “vibrant, active citizenry.’”

The EU’s Mixed Report on Turkey Yavuz Baydar argues that the report will not accelerate Turkey’s EU membership process, yet it should be seen as a balancing act to avoid derailing it altogether.

The EU Progress Report, Corruption, the AKP İhsan Yılmaz indicates that the EU report does not mention a major incident vis-à-vis corruption that took place in April 2013.

Democracy & the AKP’s Package

Kurdish Question Nuray Mert dwells upon the BDP and KCK’s disappointment with the AKP’s “democratization package.”

The Politics of a Polarized Country Following the “democratization package,” Güven Sak asks whether there are any hopes for the constitution drafting process that started in late 2011.

Kemalism and Normalization Taha Özhan says the “democratization package” has ended two Kemalist impositions—the “oath” and “headscarf.”

Turkey’s Islamic Liberals Mustafa Akyol warns those who hope for a more liberal Turkey that they would make a strategic mistake by considering all religious conservatives as an obstacle to their goal.

Turkey’s Two New Impasses Abdülhamit Bilici writes about the difficulties those who try to understand Turkey, due to Turkey’s contradictory outlook.

The Supreme Court, Balyoz and “Compatibility with the Course of Life…” Sedat Ergin examines the Supreme Court of Appeals’ criminal criteria in the Balyoz (Sledgehammer) case.

Erdogan Provides Eid Allowance To Journalist Kadri Gürsel writes about a scandal that occurred in Istanbul and that symbolizes the ethical and identity crises in Turkey’s political-media relations.

Is this the New Turkey? Borrowing Ahmet Turan Alkan’s description, Bülent Keneş says the atmosphere in Turkey is “misty, silent, and heavy.”

Could Turkey’s Christians Wear Police Uniforms? Orhan Kemal Cengiz comments on a police department statement encouraging Turkey’s non-Muslims to become police officers.

Foreign Policy

Dark Affairs Across Turkey’s Border Turkey consistently denies that it is providing assistance or logistical support to pro-al-Qaeda groups, but Çengiz Çandar believes that it is.

Pressure Mounts on Turkey Over Radical Groups in Syria Semih İdiz comments on the latest Human Rights Watch (HRW) report on the need for Turkey to prevent the influx of jihadists to Syria.

Radical Groups Operate On Turkey’s Border Fehim Taştekin says that he cannot fully verify the HRW report, but testifies that similar stories circulate in Turkey, and nobody is surprised by them.

Did Turkey Just Let a Chinese Trojan Horse into NATO? Barın Kayaoğlu writes about Turkey’s decision to choose the Chinese-made FD-2000 over the US-made Patriot PAC-3.

Who Will Lead the Middle East? The Patterns of Destructive Competition Gökhan Bacık claims that “today, we are witnessing another regional leadership competition among states like Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar”

Other Pertinent Pieces

Crimes With a View In Istanbul Neighborhood Yasemin Çongar points to the bloody struggle against drug trafficking in Gülsuyu, a marginalized suburb of İstanbul.