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Erdogan's Green Fascism: The New Sultan Flexes His Muscles

Author bio: 
Richard Cottrell

The Turkish daily Zaman has just published a very important commentary by Mumtazar Turkone which appears to suggest that the country's soft Islamic ruling power is not quite all that it seems. For a start, anything but 'soft'. In fact more like a perpetually ruling caste in the making, whose pretences towards Islamic justice and values may not be all they seem to the surface.

This is an airing of a very radical view which seems to pose strong chords with the rise of Bolshevism and National Socialism (and indeed the decay of real politics in the US today and their replacement by a common state corporatist ideology (see Supreme Court 'corporations are people' judgment)..

Turkone is guardedly pointing to the AK party becoming a permanently entrenched system of power. I completely agree with that. My impression for some time is the steady evolution of the AK movement towards a form of Islamic fascism, or more correctly, a fascist state that rests on the illusion of Islamism.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish premier, is foremost a merchant accustomed to trading in the bazaars of power. He has knocked away two of the main props of the secular establishment, the military and the old secular political institutions. They are reduced to waving their arms like windmills with no corn to grind. He has ruthless deployed the exposure of Ergenekon ( a deep state Gladio-type imitatorwhich is actually controlled by the government) to act as a kind of purifying and purging ritual.

This is exactly the tactics the Bolsheviks used to cement themselves in power, the idea of 'liberation' as a purging of a debased system. Hitler occupied the same territory. Ditto Franco, Mao. In a sense, all of these people took their inspiration from Robespierre. Erdogan's stance, his constant twisting and turning, bewilders the US, NATO etc., because the understanding and perceptions of Islam are scarcely understood in the Christian West. Those scholars who can see that Sunni Fascism is an evolving and rolling force, drawing on very old historic trends, wedded to the concept of the New Ottoman Empire, are ignored.

Erdogan's Islamism is not so much skin deep as convenient political clothing. The source of his power lies with Turkey's corporate barons, the same creatures who nourish and maintain Putinism in Russia. They are far more powerful than the soldiers. The economy is running at full tilt and while there are many black holes (weak innovation, the creaking educational fabric etc), Turks are for the first time enjoying the rewards of economic success.

There is work for all who want it, Turkey is building a high speed (aka Hitler's autobahnen) rail network based on astonishing advanced technology. This network will connect all the main population centres east-west, north-south, which will increasingly dissolve the differences between the various 'states of mind' which have held the country back since the fall of the Oottomans and the subsequent rise of the false prophet Ataturk (to whom I will return in a moment)..

We learn from current events in the region that Erdogan Islamic Fascism is an export commodity which benefits from the prevailing turmoil. It is plain that the main beneficiary of the unrest throughout the Arab world is a non-Arabic Sunni Moslem state - Turkey..

Ataturk replaced the Sultans with a rigid Bolshevist-Corporatist-Militarist police state. Between them the High Command and Ataturk's successors (the secularists who are now in a state of advanced decay) attempted to prolong his legacy so to speak but failed because they could not manage the economy and they lacked any deep or effective roots in political will.

Erdogan has tapped the reservoirs of Islamist consent, the votes of the pious and faithful who are enjoying fruits of plenty for the first time: they speak now of the Islamic Work Ethic in Anatolia, where entire communities are benefitting from small business start up grants, new public architecture of roads, fast trains, new hospitals and medical centres and schools.

Unknown, unobserved to the Christian West, Edrogan is surreptitiously altering the political landscape from one day to the next. He has started to swallow smaller political groups to expand the root base of AK. He says that AK itself must advance to the state of a national political force which reflects the united identity of the Turkish people. To that end, AK's huge immaculately choreographed rallies increasingly reflect Nuremberg.

When Erdogan steps into the limelight before the adoring masses, he pauses, inclines his head,
smiles and turns to applauding aides before silence befalls the multitude and he begins to speak in slow, measured tones. This is politics as theatre. The people love it.

One of his most significant pronouncements came at the huge rally held in the Istanbul sports drome in early summer. The master declared that he would not stand as prime minister again nor seek office again as leader of the party. This is because he intends there will be no AK party to lead. The new force which is to replace it and which he is currently constructing is the imminent National Political Movement which he will submit to the electorate for their joyous approval.

We mayl come to know this new beast in good time as Green Fascism

Ataturk constructed his vision of a modern, throbbing Turkey on a one party state. His was a hobbled, introspective creature which left the Islamic nature of Turkey unresolved. Ataturk responded like any dictator with instruments of oppression. He cowed the population and they adored him for it. He became a god when he died, of overwork it was said. Certainly his life was not prolonged by chain-smoking, frequent drinking binges and his serial amorous adventures.. Unconsciouly or otherwise the brilliant soldier turned statesman was striving to show how un-Islamic he was..

The smack of his regime lay in petty gestures like banning the fez, forcing Turks to adopt westernised names and the Latin alphabet.

Erdogan 's genius is to resolve Ataturk's unresolved legacy. He has no need to ban hats, in fact in a curious reverse doppelganger of the affair of the fez, he has legitimized - repatriated -. the public wearing of the headscarf in schools and universities. Even the most secular critics are bound to admit that its cool to be in Istanbul, thanks to the galaxy of world-friendly galas of arts. There's even a brand new home grown fashion style, Islam Chic,

It it any co-cindicidence that the turbans-and-testosterone biopic Fetih (Conquest) 1453, which features the Turkish defeat of Constantinople, is playing to rapturous houses all over Turkey? The film shamelessly re-kindles Turkey's foundation credentials which goes down with audiences throughout the Islamic world.

The religously-sympathetic daily newspaper Zaman noted ' Turks are feeling imperial again' after a decade of unprecedented economic growth, increasingly re-visiting with awe and admiration their Ottoman ancestors for inspiration – in foreign policy as much as interior design, food and fashiion.

Fetih, lavish, gaudy, fast and loose as it is with historical niceties, nonetheless perfectly identifies the neo-Ottomanist push to reassert Turkish diplomatic hegemony over the sultans' former Arab domains.

The anti-orientalists, the dispossesed elites brooding over their gin and tonics in Istanbul, dismiss the film as a 'muddled pool of hypocrisy', which is unfortunately to miss the point altogether. Namely the rescusitation of Islamic pride after all most a decade of insults for intellectual and religious backwardness, while acting as the main sump for worldwide eterror.

Catch-me-if-you-can Erdogan pulls many tails as once, and every time the victim turns around to find the tormentor has disappeared. His genie-like course through the current travails of the Middle East leaves the global community as confused as always concerning his real objectives. The man himself could very well respond, like the scorpion who stung the frog, 'it is my nature.'

Western diplomats in Ankara have closed their minds because they basically regard Turkey as a third world country which has got too big for its boots. One fine day the secularists will come back to power and everything will be as neat and tidy as it was before. Turkey is supposed to be a swimming pool for westerm corporates, not a power in its own right. They laugh at the imperial dimension. I wonder if they will still be laughing when Syria and Iran go the way of Iraq and Afghanistan and Turkey is the last man standing.