What will happen to Abdullah Gül?
The prime minister has surveyed 24 Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputies, 20 of them said they wanted to see Recep Tayyip Erdoğan as president.
This is not a surprising statistic.
There is nobody left in this world who does not know that Prime Minister Erdoğan very much wants to be the president. When such information is standing before most of the deputies, nobody would expect them to say, “No, sir, you should not be the president.”
According to what the AKP writers, who have been tasked by the prime minister to mold public opinion on behalf of the prime minister, say and write about it, this matter was decided long ago.
There is only one question left unanswered: What will happen to Abdullah Gül?
Will he accept stepping aside and retire at this age, after being engaged in active politics for years, or will he be taken into consideration as the new chair of the AKP?
It looks as if what the prime minister wishes the most is that Gül retire and step aside. Erdoğan’s current target is to appoint a prime minister within the party who would obey every word of his, as well as handing in the party to a loyal “co-chair.” This is exceptionally obvious.
The signs of this are that AKP spokesmen are drawing attention to the multitude of duties and powers the president has according to the Constitution, as well as the mention of the “plan” of the prime minister to become a “sweating, running” president.
If Erdoğan manages to be elected president, he will appoint a person at the head of the government who will do whatever he tells him to do. The requirement to select the prime minister from among existing deputies and the fact that the first general elections are in 2015 constitute a tough journey for Gül.
Will he become a candidate for AKP chairmanship, contrary to Erdoğan’s will? If he does, will he be able to be elected? If elected, will he be a prime minister working in harmony with Erdoğan? All of these are now a mystery for Gül.
However, before the prime minister, if he is elected president, there lies a long period to apply any plan he wants. During this time, he may re-design the party, he may form the party congress from delegates he trusts and he may have anyone he wishes to be elected as chair of the party.
His first target is to act as a “president affiliated to a political party” even though this is openly against the Constitution. His final target is to reach a majority strong enough to form a presidential or semi-presidential system or form alliances for this.
Everything depends on whether or not Gül would stomach this.
Can Erdoğan be defeated?
If this is not accomplished, then we may witness the formation of a political party coming from the tradition of political Islam and may be closer to the center compared to AKP.
Look who’s talking?
Egemen Bağış, who was removed from his EU Minister post because of what came up in the graft investigations, went back to posting Twitter messages after a month-long break.
Bağış’s tweet was this: “In daily Sabah, @GumustekinTulu has written so correctly, ‘The morals of an opposition which include tolerance and apology have long been lost.’”
When I read that in the paper I couldn’t keep myself from laughing aloud.
It now seems that he has given up “Googling for a verse of the Quran on the Internet, then commenting about it,” or what he has called “bakara-makara.” He is now focusing on moral matters.
I want to help him though, since he has not tweeted for a month, he might have lost his familiarity with the system. For example wouldn’t it have been interesting if he had sent such a tweet?
“Businessmen who send 500 thousand dollars to Cabinet Ministers in chocolate trays are damaging political morals.”
Or this: “Can you call a person ‘with good morals,’ the one who receives millions of dollars inside suit bags?”
Another one such as this would also be nice: “After making fun of people’s religious beliefs by saying bakara-makara, the morals of apologizing have long been lost.”
Maybe such a hashtag can be started: #thecamelneverseesitsownhump