Islamization Of Turkey In Post Coup Atmosphere – OpEd


In Europe, Turkey, unfortunately, is facing the destabilization threats like any other Muslim nation in Asia, especially in Arab world. The Turkish AKP government of Erdogan is fully aware of impediments to Islamist governance being created by the enemies of Islam and opponents of AKP in Turkey. Now that the military coup has been defeated, the government could now resume with more zeal the Islamist mission of ruling AKP for the future of Turkey and the world at large.

For realizing the government goals, Turkey needs to maintain sustained relations with its immediate neighbors. Unfortunately, the military coup occurred as President Erdogan began efforts to formulate a new friendly and productive foreign policy to pursue Turkey’s genuine interests
The defeat of military coup and success of the forces for democracy, both within Turkey and worldwide should strengthen the elected governments to worry more of coups. The Turkey case has shown that entire world has stood up to the military plotters.

The global infrastructure for freedom and democracy makes it harder for would-be strongmen in military or police uniform to succeed in coup plotting in future.

An attempted coup d’état in Turkey July 15 failed for a host of internal reasons, notably the fumbling nature of the military faction trying to overthrow President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. As President Erdogan tries to use the bungled putsch to further strengthen his rule, he should recognize just how many forces for democracy, both within Turkey and worldwide, saved both elected presidency and his elected AKP government.

In a stroke, some members of Turkey’s military – the second-largest force in NATO and a powerful bastion of secularism that has toppled four civilian governments since 1960 – showed that they were unhappy with Turkey’s Islamist and authoritarian trajectory, and believed they were in a position to stop it.

President Erdogan – the man with a mission for society who for years has fought to eclipse the military’s role in politics in the name of democracy – used Face Time to foil the coup – at the same time exposing the weaknesses of his divisive vision of majoritarian rule. The attempt comes as Turkey faces an unprecedented array of threats, and its stability is critical to a region reeling from the Syrian civil war, the refugee crisis, and the presence of the self-declared Islamic State.

Turkey’s four main political parties issued a statement condemning the military coup, a rare case of national unity. Turkish people, even Erdogan critics, quickly used social media to take to the streets to defend the country’s democracy.

Turkey received universal support for regaining democratic strength. The USA, European Union, and many other democracy backers hailed Turkey’s political success and opposed the coup. Even Russian leader Vladimir Putin spoke up.

Bloody footprints still stained Istanbul’s Taksim Square as thousands of Turks heeded the call by President Erdoğan to celebrate a victory of democracy over an attempted military coup that failed before dawn, just hours after it began. With so much digital information available about the military leaders who opposed the coup, the plotters were easily seen as small in number.

Any person or group trying to thwart a democracy these days is up against a global infrastructure of freedom cum democracy that has been built up since World War II. Many more countries have democratic activists operating in civil society groups. Many governments now have democracy-promotion efforts, such as election support and monitoring. The creation of the International Criminal Court acts as a deterrent to would-be dictators, though some colonialist countries continue to attack neighboring or its own illegal colonies – like Israeli intermittent aggression of Palestine, killing civilians including children and women.

Before the failed military coup over the weekend and the ensuing purge by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan of thousands of personnel in the military, police, and judiciary, the country’s political climate had become increasingly authoritarian and toxic. But the military coup could only make the trend firmer.

Obviously, enemies of Islam do not want Muslim children to learn and know Islam. While the AKP government is keen to make school education purposeful for the fullest possible development of Islamic mindset and concern for Islamic values, opponents of Islam play mischief in Turkey’s educational system. The roles of politics and religion in the classroom have been emotive issues in Turkey for decades. The debate has often focused on Imam Hatips: religious schools that are the preferred choice for pious parents who want their children to receive a higher-than-usual dose of Sunni Islamic teaching. In the mid-1990s, around 10 percent of all high school pupils attended Imam Hatips, but that proportion fell dramatically after a crackdown on religious education in 1998.

The Erdogan era has strengthened Islamic system of education as foundation for an Islamist society for glorious life of people. In the past six years, the schools have made a dramatic comeback under the AKP. Several hundred public high schools have been converted into Imam Hatips, and they are now close to surpassing their peak in the 1990s.

However, the latest protests take the debate into new territory, since the schools affected comprise the cream of the education system: the elite high schools that provide free education to the brightest children and have produced a large proportion of its political, intellectual, and cultural leaders.
In March 2015, 44 of these schools were placed under tighter supervision as part of the new Project Schools initiative, which officials say is intended to boost excellence. Istanbul High School is among them. Its famous alumni run the gamut, from academics and poets to pop stars and three former prime ministers.

Turkish government tries to inculcate Islamic values through education. But there have been concerted efforts b anti-Islamic forces operating in Turkey and influencing form across the borders try to complicate the AKP’s educational programs. A section argues, Turkey is a majority Muslim country, but education and religion should be separated from each other for the sake of “secularism”. The organization behind the petition – Mr. Çelik’s Turkish High Schools Union – is linked to a fringe political group that espouses hard-line secular nationalist values.

President Erdoğan has dismissed the protests against Islamization of education and society and a petition in this regard as the work of fringe groups hoping to revive the mass antigovernment protests that shook the country in 2013. “We are seeing that some forces that have still not learned from the past are now provoking university and high school students,” Erdoğan said in a speech on July 16. The government now seems increasingly unwilling to allow children to be educated in an anti-Islamic atmosphere in which they might be exposed to politically oppositional or controversial ideas that could ruin Islam in them , out of fear that this could aalso damage Turkey’s stability and growth. AKP government needs to protect and safeguard the gains of Islamist rule.

The battle for Turkey’s soul – AKP party and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan – has been revealed in a flash during a coup attempt. The government needs to be firm about the AKP party program and principles to make Turkey truly Islamic state. How Erdogan’s post-coup crackdown impacts the clash over school curriculum and administration remains to be seen.

Democracy has suffered setbacks in the past 15 years. But the number of democracies in the world is at an all-time high and 40 percent of the world’s population still lives under fairly elected governments. More people seek the freedoms of democracy and have more tools to push for it. The world was reminded of this progress in Turkey’s failed coup. That country must now move toward more democracy while ensure mechanisms to deny the military plotters to destroy elected governments. .

A number of coups has fallen over the past quarter century but plotters can continence to attack democracy and cause disorder and destabilization. And would-be strongmen must think twice about offending a range of institutions set up to promote democracy, fight corruption, and defend human rights.

Turkey’s membership in NATO may have reduced the willingness of Turkey’s top brass to join in this latest coup attempt. Turkey seeks to join the EU, which requires it to improve its democratic credentials but coups can harm that effort. The country also needs foreign investment, which means that financial bodies such as the International Monetary Fund look hard at its democratic stability.

The violent bid to oust President Erdoğan has exposed weaknesses in his divisive rule with freedom for subversive politics – and could test Turkey’s stability at a time of unprecedented threats at home and in the region. . Unnecessary compromises with anti-Islamic forces operating within and across the borders could damage the Islamist ideals.

While many argue the event will help Erdoğan consolidate power, he would advance Islamist agenda for turkey. There is huge division in the Turkish military and in Turkish society, and they don’t go away, but they make the person who’s in charge more likely to respond to threats effectively and logically.

Dr. Abdul Ruff

Dr. Abdul Ruff is a columnist contributing articles to many newspapers and journals on world politics. He is an expert on Mideast affairs, as well as a chronicler of foreign occupations and freedom movements (Palestine, Kashmir, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Xinjiang, Chechnya, etc.). Dr. Ruff is a specialist on state terrorism, the Chancellor-Founder of Center for International Affairs (CIA), commentator on world affairs and sport fixings, and a former university teacher. He is the author of various eBooks/books and editor for INTERNATIONAL OPINION and editor for FOREIGN POLICY ISSUES; Palestine Times.

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