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The complex relationship between political Islam and the Turkish state – from political exclusion in the early Republican era, to power-sharing in the post-World War II multi-party era, to political incumbency in the 2000s – was crowned by AKP’s landslide electoral victory in 2002. The author debunks two myths regarding this relationship: first, that Kemalism enjoyed a monopoly of political power for decades and second, that Islamists achieved victory in 2002 after being the regime’s sole opposition. According to the author, Turkey’s failed Middle East policy can be attributed to AKP’s misconception that its Islamic counterparts would achieve power after the Arab uprisings just as they had done in Turkey in 2002.

CONTRIBUTOR
Behlül Özkan
Behlül ÖzkanDr. Behlül Özkan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations at Marmara University, Istanbul.
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Foreword TPQ’s Summer issue, NATO in 2020 and Beyond: New Strategies and Frontiers, offers insights on the Alliance’s current challenges and future security trends, while offering a look into Euro-Atlantic relations in the coming decade. It is clear that as the international security landscape is rapidly changing, member states’ capabilities, resilience, and most importantly, their...
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