Behind the Scenes of the Early Election Decision!

 By: Kemal Öztürk*

In my opinion, this is one of the most congenial lines of the press world: “Behind the scenes of such and such an incident…”

A mysterious, exciting and appealing sentence disclosing the unknown.

This is the most widespread headline used by our colleagues in Ankara. Well, writers like us working in Istanbul don’t see even the “scenes,” how can we comment on the “backstage”?

Since Erdoğan’s rule, the focus of the journalism has shifted to Ankara. I remember those days. We, as Istanbul writers, didn’t give any credit to news from Ankara. The centre of the news was Istanbul. However, Erdoğan has changed the rules of the politics as well as the rules and the traditions of media. It is I who suffers from this change because I moved from Ankara to Istanbul. Anyway!

How was the decision for an early election made?

After Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) head Devlet Bahçeli made one of his classic moves determining the direction of politics the day before, we have been arguing about this issue even in our dreams. How was the early election decision made? Who made it? Was the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party aware? Did Bahçeli make the decision alone?…

Journalist Şirin Payzın asked these questions for more than four hours on CCN Turk. At the same time, all the news channels of the country were broadcasting programs asking the same questions.

We should appreciate this:

The third party of the assembly achieved to determine the first item on the country’s agenda again.

Bahçeli is making such skilled moves in politics that he is taking the initiative from even the ruling AK Party. From my perspective, Bahçeli is an exceptional politician who should be watched and noted exclusively in terms of the science of politics.

However, there is something that I wonder. I still don’t get why AK Party feels so bound to MHP. This is a different a matter of debate.

Did Bahçeli decide this alone?

Now, let’s get down to how this decision was made. I guess we have to take the lid off the matter at this point.

The officials of AK Party and MHP stated that there was no decision taken on this subject before.

Then, Bahçeli decided on an early decision, determined the date and declared all out of the blue? Do you think so?

No, it is impossible.

To say the least, a decision like this cannot be imposed on President Erdoğan, who has never held elections early before. This would have been one of the most powerful counterproductive impositions. For this reason, this is a matter discussed and finalized between two leaders. I am saying this as an interpretation, not based on precise information.

I think the spokesmen of both MHP and the AK Party are making a mistake by defending the opposite. In the case that the AK Party and Erdoğan were not informed at all, then the criticisms that claim that the “MHP is governing AK Party” have turned out to be right. I think it would be better to drop the subject immediately.

As you see, Bahçeli didn’t take this decision alone.

An early election is good

Only an unsuccessful opposition fears early elections. All self-confident parties should consider the early election as an early spring. That is to say, the chance of coming to power is moved to an earlier time.

Elections mean favouring the citizens. For this reason, they, too, become happy. Salaries may be increased, inflation is postponed, stimulus packages are granted, the economy livens, and abundance comes to the country. I guess important developments will take place regarding the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) – the most important problem of the period- and the coup victimizations as well.

The abundance of an early election also reflects on politics. It will bring out new political actors, those worn out go away, party organizations undergo a change, and new polling clerks are determined.

For these reasons, I love early elections.

Of course, I cannot know what kind of a scene will come about after all these good developments and the elections. However, hope springs eternal in the human heart.

Even if what I write is not behind the scenes, isn’t it good in terms of interpreting what lies behind political moves? Nice try, I think.

Kemal Öztürk* is a Turkish writer and journalist.

(Published in Yeni Şafak Turkish newspaper on April 19, 2018)