Sunday, February 5, 2012

"Turkey’s Crackdown on the Press recalls Military’s Tactics"

Barın Kayaoğlu evaluated recent curtailments of press freedom in Turkey. He suggests the recent tide of authoritarianism in Turkey is due to AKP's failure to garner lessons from history. Read his commentary via GIT - North America.

Reporters Without Borders has demoted Turkey by 10 places in its World Press Freedom index rankings for 2011-2012. The report's statement that "the judicial system launched a wave of arrests of journalists that was without precedent since the military dictatorship [of the early 1980s]" reminded me of the "Back to the Future" movie series.

In the trilogy, the heroes use a time machine to go back and forth between the past and the future, which causes them to inadvertently change events and cause new problems. As Turkey tries to solve its old problems with outdated means, it faces the same contradiction as the heroes of "Back to the Future": without learning the mistakes of its past, Turkey seems destined to repeating them.

This is an excerpt from Kayaoğlu's article in Juan Cole's Informed Comment. To read the Turkish version please click here.