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  • Author: Nilufer Gole
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The Occupy Gezi movement has been a staging ground for the creativity of micro-practices, and it embodies the importance of the politics of everyday life. The claim to protect the park is not merely metaphorical. The park signifies the physicality of the public sphere. Ideally it is the concrete space, open space for citizens where they can manifest freely their presence and interact with each other. The public square Gezi movement represents a new threshold for democracy where old cleavages between authoritarian secularism and Islam are surpassed and new forms of citizenship are rehearsed. The Gezi Park movement opened up a new arena of creative experience and provided a home for democratic imaginaires growing and resonating from Istanbul, Turkey.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Hatem Ete
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Although a lot has been said about the Gezi protests, analyses of the events consistently failed on two particular issues. First, in their efforts to analyze the dynamics behind the protests, analysts failed to distinguish the immediate triggers of the demonstrations from the more rooted causes of discontent. Second, the diverse and transforming makeup of the protesters was overlooked. The underlying assumption was that Gezi protesters were a homogenous group even as the crowds increased during the course of the demonstrations. This article offers an alternative perspective in analyzing the makeup and the motivation of the protesters.
  • Author: Coskun Tastan
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Civil protests began on May 27, 2013, in opposition to modernization works planned for Gezi Park near Taksim Square, Istanbul. The events that ensued between protesters and the government eventually led to protests across Turkey. Only time will tell how the social events that started with the Gezi Park protests will affect Turkey. This article attempts to address the dynamics of the Gezi Park protests and how it turned out to be so wide spread. This research is based on the data collected between June 12-16, 2013, with face-to-face, in-depth interviews with 62 activists in Istanbul, Ankara, Ä°zmir and EskiÅŸehir.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Tayfun Atay
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article argues that the devastating mass demonstrations triggered by a humble environmentalist protest in the Gezi Park of Istanbul cannot be understood without taking into account the notion of 'culture'. The driving force behind the demonstrations, which turned into an extensive social outburst, is cultural and rooted in the worries of the secular people of the country about the shrinking ground of their lifestyle as a result of government pressures. What happened during the weeks of Gezi Park demonstrations was actually a reaction of these people to the 'official' trend of intensification toward religious morality in daily life and the public space.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Dogan Eskinat
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Unknown to most of the world only a month ago, Gezi Park –the epicenter of Turkey's June 2013 protests- has rapidly emerged as a historic site for the country's democracy. During the course of events, many observers almost exclusively concentrated on young, politically unaffiliated citizens who took the streets for the first time in their lives. However, the movement was really an amorphous whole whose members identify with the Left in the broadest sense of the term. As such, the Gezi Park protests represent a critical juncture in the history of the Turkish Left and a call to existing political parties to reinvent their platform in order to accommodate the demands of underrepresented groups including liberals, the LGBT community and environmentalists.
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Mahmood Monshipuri
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Rowhani's victory in Iran's 2013 presidential election is a clear protest vote against his predecessor's management of the country's relations with the Western world. Although Rowhani's support for broader social freedoms, as well as his advocacy for women's rights rendered him a favorite candidate for change, undoubtedly economic insecurity — caused by the imposition of sanctions by the Western world in reaction to Iran's nuclear program — was a key factor in his victory. Since Rowhani is ultimately beholden to the Supreme Leader, the question persists: Does the election of yet another reformist generate false hope or genuine hope? We will have to wait and see if Rowhani's presidency can provide the perspective necessary for breaking away from the futile approach of the past.
  • Political Geography: Iran
  • Author: Ben Welch
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This paper compares various macro-prudential and policy tools, set against various aspects of the countries' recent political economies, used by Brazil and Turkey to address some issues currently affecting the more attractive emerging markets: international capital inflows, inflation, and, current account deficits. By looking at two of these vibrant emerging economies, and examining their respective approaches to managing the domestic side effects of increased liquidity in the global financial system, this paper seeks to divine lessons for other policy makers and analysts.
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Brazil
  • Author: Sadik Unay
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The international system embarked on a process of transformation to a more heterogeneous configuration and debates of multipolarity acquired vibrancy in recent years. The formation of groupings such as the BRICS by emerging powers was interpreted as the harbinger of a novel global order. This study presents a nuanced account of recent global trends through a critical reading of the BRICS both as analytical category and an international actor. Thus, the heterogeneity of its members in terms of political regimes, economic strategies, geo-strategic alignments and national interest formations is emphasized. In contrast to premature 'power shift' arguments, a more subtle approach that underlines complex forms of interdependence between established and emerging global actors is proposed. Consequently, the BRICS is conceptualized as an 'international regime' operating relatively well in a specific field of international relations, nothing more.
  • Author: Oscar J. Martin Garcia
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This commentary tries to study the current socio-economic crisis in Spain and the end of the political era which began with transition to democracy in the second half of the 1970s. Following pages deal with the intense rise of the unemployment rate and the social drama caused by the increase of material inequalities in Spain. It also analyzes the political crisis that threatens to destroy the institutional model which was crafted after 40 years of harsh dictatorship. All these factors are provoking political suspicion and social despair among some sectors of Spanish society. But there are not only feelings of disappointment and defeat in Spain. The large-scale protests that have engulfed the country over the last two years represent a powerful social force for grass-root democratic regeneration in this part of the Iberian Peninsula.
  • Topic: Politics
  • Political Geography: Spain
  • Author: Abdulkadir Civan, Savas Genc, Davut Taser, Sinem Atakul
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Turkish foreign policy has changed substantially within the last decade. Even though its relationship with the West still has significance, relations with neighboring countries and other countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Asia have improved. This new foreign policy incorporates Turkey's political and economic aspirations. Its aim is to utilize the country's economic strength in order to reach political goals while simultaneously using political tools to obtain economic benefits. This study analyzes the effects of the recent change in foreign policy on Turkey's international trade. Specifically, we investigate the influence of Turkish Prime Minister Erdoğan's foreign visits on international trade by using a standard trade gravity model. Statistical analyses imply that Erdoğan's visits help increase Turkish international trade.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy
  • Political Geography: Africa, Middle East, Asia
  • Author: Jakub Wodka, Sarah Kuzmicz
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: This article explores the strategic importance Turkey holds to the European Union and how Ankara could contribute to the EU's achieving the status of a veritable global power. It seeks to understand how the often contradictory threads (democratization vs. creeping authoritarianism) in the recent transformation of Turkish domestic politics affects its European credentials. The main argument of the paper is that it is in the core interest of both parties to align their policies in the neighboring regions, namely the Balkans, Caucasus, and the Middle East, especially in the post Arab Spring era. What hinders the genuine EU-Turkey partnership is often the political and tactical short-sightedness of both parties rather than the factual divergence of strategic interests.
  • Topic: Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey, Middle East
  • Author: Mohamed Metawe
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: For many decades, the Arab despots would serve the Western interests in the region in return for a Western disregard to democracy policies in their countries. By the outbreak of the Arab uprisings in the Middle East, this implicit agreement between the West and the Arab despots was put in jeopardy. This article defines the challenges faced by the Western interests as a result of these revolts. Moreover, it digs deeper into the American and European reactions to the uprisings. Finally, the article contemplates the reasons behind the western behavior towards these revolts. Against this backdrop, this article argues that the implicit agreement is still possible in spite of the Arab uprising, albeit with a diverse formula.
  • Political Geography: America, Europe, Middle East
  • Author: Oguzhan Goksel
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: Since the beginning of the Arab Spring, the so-called 'Turkish model' has become a key ingredient of the discourse of democratization in the Middle East. In this study, first, the assumption of the necessity of a 'model' for the emerging democracies in the Middle East will be discussed. This will be followed by a comparative analysis of the Turkish and Iranian models because of their potential to affect the policies of emerging states in the region. The study will acknowledge the fact that the full application of the model may not be possible, however, I will conclude that the Turkish model is much more applicable to the emerging democracies in Tunisia and Egypt than the Iranian model and it has a lot to offer to those societies in terms of guidance in areas such as the state-religion relations, economic development, and democracy building.
  • Political Geography: Iran, Turkey, Middle East, Tunisia
  • Author: Ali Erken
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: The article analyses the use of Ottoman past as a central theme in Turkish politics since the 1960s. It discusses how the revivalist discourse treats the question of westernization and shapes the perception of young activists towards the Ottomans. As confrontational themes with the West surfaced more frequently, the search for a new “order” became more tangible. Furthermore, the negative outlook of the Republican historiography towards the Ottoman heritage was dismissed, especially among young and educated followers of the MHP and MSP-RP. This orientation gained more widespread acceptance among the mass during the AK Party years as a result of the government's revisionist foreign policy and increasing frequency of the references to the Ottoman history in the party leadership's discourse.
  • Topic: Politics
  • Political Geography: Turkey
  • Author: Ahmet T. Kuru
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: THIS is a path-breaking book that contributes to the literature on ethnicity and nationalism from various aspects. Conceptually, it develops a typology of three regimes of ethnicity—monoethnic, multiethnic, and antiethnic. The monoethnic regime, unlike the two other types, prioritizes one ethnic group in terms of citizenship and immigration. The multiethnic regime differs from the two others by constitutionally recognizing multiple ethnic groups and even providing them territorial autonomies and some affirmative action policies. The antiethnic regime, in this regard, refuses to recognize a single or multiple ethnic identities as basis of state policy.
  • Topic: Immigration
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Germany
  • Author: ÇIĞDEM HAJIPOURAN BENAM
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: ALMOST eight years on from the start of accession negotiations, the view of Turkey-European Union (EU) relations is somber. The Union is too busy with its enlargement fatigue and economic turmoil, whereas Turkey has been experiencing a confidence boom as a result of its impressive economic performance and proactive foreign policy, pushing the two parties further apart. However, despite this gloomy picture in Turkey's EU membership negotiations, change has been and is taking place in Turkish politics. A crucial question, therefore, is without the full membership perspective what is triggering change in Turkey? Is this change a sign of a continuing process of 'Europeanization'? If yes, how do we explain this? How far does it relate to the appeal of the EU membership and how far can Turkey's various policy fields be Europeanized? What are the limits of Europeanization and under what conditions does it work better? Why are there diverging levels of transformation in different policy fields? These are some of the questions Turkey and the European Union: Processes of Europeanization comprehensively answers.
  • Topic: Politics
  • Political Geography: Europe, Turkey
  • Author: Pinar Senisik
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: THE CONCEPT of humanitarian intervention and international practice in the nineteenth and early twentieth century is the subject of Against Massacre: Humanitarian Interventions in the Ottoman Empire 1815-1914 by Davide Rodogno. This book addresses the European roots of humanitarian intervention and rejects the mainstream argument that humanitarian intervention is a practice of international relations that emerged after the end of the Cold War. Rodogno's emphasis, rather, is on the fact that the roots of humanitarian intervention can be traced back to the nineteenth century. He defines humanitarian intervention as a “coercive diplomatic and/or a group of states inside the territory of a target state” (p. 2). The book comprises ten chapters and concentrates mainly on the political and legal aspects of the European involvement into the internal affairs of the Ottoman Empire.
  • Topic: Cold War, Humanitarian Aid
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Elizabeth H. Ozdalga
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: STUDIES on late Ottoman society continue to be inviting for historians in many aspects. This period is not only important for historical research into the Ottoman world but also necessary for a better understanding of modern Turkey. This also can be extended to the Islamic world, including many Middle Eastern countries together with the Balkans, North Africa, and the Caucasus regions. Özdalga has made a valuable contribution with this comprehen-sive volume on the intellectual legacy of the period.
  • Topic: Islam
  • Political Geography: Turkey, Middle East, North Africa
  • Author: Fawaz A. Gerges
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: WITHIN Fawaz Gerges' text, The End of America's Moment?-Obama and the Middle East, the author endeavors to examine President Obama's implementation of inherently stagnant policies towards the highly volatile and rapidly evolving Middle East. Furthermore, Gerges elaborates on the manner in which the globalists and the Israel-first school succeed in shaping public opinion in the United States about the Middle East and how this process perpetually cripples Obama.
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Middle East, Israel
  • Author: Azzam Tamimi
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Insight Turkey
  • Institution: SETA Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research
  • Abstract: THIS BOOK is an easy to read textbook that is structured to present readers with an historical overview of some of the prominent Islamic movements active in parts of the Muslim world, specifically in West and South Asia. It comprises an introduction, five chapters, and a conclusion. The first chapter is about Egypt's Islamism with the main focus on the Muslim Brotherhood. The second chapter is on the West Bank, Gaza, and Israel. A summary of the history of the conflict leads to a discussion of Hamas, Palestine's main Islamic group. The third chapter is on Saudi Arabia tracing the roots of Wahhabism to Najd. The fourth chapter is on Pakistan with an emphasis on Mawdudi and Jama'at-I Islami. And the fifth chapter is on Afghanistan and the rise of Osama bin Laden, the Taliban, and Alqaida.
  • Topic: Islam
  • Political Geography: Pakistan, Afghanistan, Israel, Palestine, Gaza, Saudi Arabia