Turkey as of yesterday has officially entered a pre-election period, which will result in the re-election of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
From that point of view, the interim period is more important than the given result, as by all indications the Turkish president will attempt to garner the greatest possible majority with legitimate and illegitimate means, including a possible escalation of tensions in the Aegean or wherever else it may be deemed useful.
This method is popular among authoritarian regimes. One stirs an artificial crisis to rally the people around the leader, against the supposed enemy. That is the classic manner in which an authoritarian regime seizes the consent of the citizenry.
One cannot be certain of how far the Turkish president is willing to go to achieve his aim. What is certain is that he views these elections as the last hurdle before transforming his country into a state in which he himself will have virtually all powers in his hands – even more than modern Turkey’s founder Kemal Ataturk once did.
The stakes are high for Tayyip Erdogan. Consequently, our country must be exceptionally careful during this period in order to avoid traps, great and small, traps which it has not always avoided of late.