Initial ideas on the Istanbul blast

Initial ideas on the Istanbul blast

- If the first thing that comes to one’s mind is “Oh what about the effect on tourism,” it means we have truly lost our souls and humanity.

- Turkey now excels in imposing media bans. We are the fastest and the most dynamic country in the world when it comes to introducing media blackouts. 

- After the bloody events in Paris in November, our president turned to France and asked, “Why did you not prevent these attacks by gathering information about them beforehand? Doesn’t your intelligence agency work?” What would happen if a French official turned to us and said the same thing to our president? 

- Rumors were immediately spread across Istanbul that there would be a second suicide bomber. Even my mother was calling from Silivri, near Istanbul, to tell me “Please stay away from crowded places.” Could it be that these media bans cause people to pay more attention to these kinds of rumors? 

- The European media was ultra-sensitive about not broadcasting or publishing bloody images of the attacks in Paris. But it showed zero sensitivity when it was the Sultanahmet attack in question. Is that not nauseating? 

- After such incidents, we always arrive at the same sentence: “We should not have dived into this Syria business so directly.”

- Isn’t it strange to follow incidents from the British, French and German media, not the Turkish media, like the days after the Sept. 12, 1980 coup? 

- We now have so many enemies... How many countries are we at odds with? Why are we in the firing range of so many organizations? How many deadlocks are we are at the focal point of? Why are we paying such a price?

Snap elections on Erdoğan’s mind 

Now, put yourself in President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s shoes and take a look at the state of the opposition. When you look at the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), you see that it is due to hold a convention. It shows no sign of increasing its 25 percent of the vote. It is ineffective. It is doubtful that it will raise its votes even a bit in the next election to be held. There are no signs that it is waking up. 
When you look at the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), you see that even if its internal opposition collects enough signatures, party leader Devlet Bahçeli insists that he will not hold a party convention. His opponents might take the issue to court. In such chaos, it would not be a surprise if the party failed to cross the 10 percent parliamentary threshold in the next election. 

When you look at the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), you see that it has surrendered itself to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). It has not been able to develop its own stance. It has gotten lost in the trenches and barricades of the PKK. It will therefore lose more votes not only from the other regions of Turkey, but even from the Kurdish middle classes. This means that the HDP will also drop below the election threshold. 

If you are Tayyip Erdoğan, wouldn’t this colossal opposition crisis attract your attention? 

I bet Erdoğan has a plan in his mind. 

He will take Turkey to snap elections very soon. It is doubtful whether any of the opposition parties even notice this plan right now. Besides, even if they do, what can they do? One of them is stuck at 25 percent, another faces the threat of the election threshold, another is facing death. 

If you were Erdoğan, would you not kick the ball into an empty goal?