Those expecting domestic fights in AKP are only daydreaming
It became a thriller for those who like political scenarios that President Abdullah Gül announced he will go back to his party the Justice and Development Party (AKP) after his term ends and right after this announcement, the AKP’s authorized body set the date for the extraordinary congress for Aug. 27.
This actually is not a surprise.
Erdoğan had said that after he leaves, it should be the same person to fill both the office of the prime minister and the position of the party chair.
The road taken targets exactly this. The person Erdoğan points to will become the party leader Aug. 27 and Erdoğan will appoint that person as prime minister on August 28.
It is a fact that this move obstructs, for now, the return of Gül to being the party leader. But this also does not show that Gül will be retired and be passive; it also does not mean a Gül-Erdoğan clash and discord will emerge within the party.
Answers to related questions will be provided by the newly appointed prime minister’s performance until the next elections. The field where the performance of the new party chair and the prime minister will be primarily assessed depending on what kind of a method they adopt to manage the party.
Will this new chair maintain the equilibrium within the party or will he let the clashes move in their pace? If he can keep the current equilibrium of today, then there is no problem.
Erdoğan already has an unquestionable authority within the party; a party leader who will be able to maintain the balances can have the support of this authority and rule the party without any fanfare.
Let us not forget that this movement primarily is a political mission movement, its roots are deep and it is not possible to break it up into pieces easily. None of the significant actors within the party would want to participate in such a business.
However, if the new party leader, as we have frequently seen in our political scene, attempts to act like an elephant in a china shop, then things may get worse.
Yet, at such an event, Erdoğan’s authority and arbitration may be enough to solve the issue, but if Erdoğan has it in mind to proceed with a new team, then instead of solving the problem he may take the new chair’s side. This stance may cause those “unhappy” souls in the party to search for a “new leader.” One does not need to be a soothsayer to say Gül is the first address in such a search.
The second performance test is whether he will succeed in the upcoming general elections as prime minister.
While approaching the elections, if this new prime minister and party chair is regarded as “incompetent” then Erdoğan would be first to abandon him. In this case, there is no other alternative but Gül.
For this reason, Gül’s political future is mostly dependent on the political performance of the new leader. If he is successful, then there is no need for Gül. If he is not successful, then the only alternative is Gül.
As a conclusion, those who are expecting a breakup in the AKP, I think, are only daydreaming.
The AKP is both a mission movement and also a business partnership for the segments to which it has been distributing the blessings of the 12-year-old governing.
The fall of this partnership is possible only with the stop of the flow of blessings from the government and everybody in the AKP knows a breakup would mean a farewell to governing. Then there will be no money to “zero” and no other “sweet official tenders” and which AKP member would ever want that?
Ultranationalists and leftists do not mix
I was laughing at a story I read yesterday about the domestic opposition within the Republican People’s Party (CHP) questioning party chair Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. This segment defines itself as ultranationalist and thinks their party’s “opening to the right” policy has collapsed and there is a need to open to the “left-socialist segments…”
They must have almost lost it.
For those political people or movements who identify with the left or socialists, the ultranationalists of the CHP are typical “rightists.”
For example, for a socialist, education in the mother tongue is an unquestionable right, for an “ultranationalist” this demand is equivalent to demanding the separation of the country. The same goes for the strengthening of local governance…
Being a social democrat, first of all necessitates, being a democrat; we know ultranationalists do not have such a concern.
There is no possibility for social democratic or socialist ideas to come to terms with ultranationalist ideas and policies.
If there seems to be conciliation, then be sure it means one of them has decided to act as “not themselves.”