Unbelievably corrupt!


Date posted: February 26, 2014

KERİM BALCI

Last week the Turkish Review and Hira magazine organized the first meeting of the Turkish-Arab Intellectuals Forum in İstanbul. The meeting was attended by about 50 Arab and 30 Turkish intellectuals from all walks of life. The topic to be discussed during the meeting was post-Islamism. Since the term “Islamism” still has sympathetic connotations in the Arab World, I suggested naming the topic “The ‘State’ Test for Muslims: Alternative Models for Social Change.”

Islamism is the name of an ideology that advocates a top-down approach for social change. Islamist political movements resemble the “vanguard party” of Leninism, though they are not necessarily revolutionist. Their strategy can be simplified as coming to power via peaceful and democratic means, controlling the state apparatus through gradual favoritism, inducing systemic changes through legitimate yet exclusivist tactics, forcing societal change through the use of state violence and legitimizing the use of power and securing continued control of the state in consequent elections. Similar to the Vanguardism of Lenin, for Islamists, party comes before the government. Controlling the party becomes equivalent to controlling the state and the internal regulations of the party are given priority over the laws of the country.

Islamism in this sense is over. The Muslim world is looking towards a post-Islamist paradigm by means of perceptions about citizenship, constitution, the state and civil society.

It has to be underlined that Islamism is not authentically Islamic. It is a modern ideology developed in the 19th century in response to the backwardness of the Muslim world and in principle it foresaw the Islamization of Western discoveries, be they scientific, technological or political, that accounted for the rapid development in the West. It was not a reactionary response to modernism; rather, it was modernist with a strategy of selectively assimilating Western political apparatus like elections, a parliamentary system, constitutionalism, the separation of powers and a nation state.

Some of these “imports” bore similarities to age-old Islamic notions and mechanisms. It was not difficult to naturalize elections, parliaments and the separation of powers in a Muslim context. But the nation state as a homogenizing central power had no similar structure in Islamic history. It was non-Islamic through and through. As Islamists made the nation state the target of their political conquests, they also became non-Islamic. Until Islamist politics bore the fruits of Islamist governments their non-Islamic status was not realized, though.

Islamism is an attractive opposition ideology. Within its reactionary — sometimes anti-establishment — rhetoric, Islamism failed to develop a strategy of responsible governance. When challenged with apparently un-Islamic but also indispensable necessities of day-to-day governance, Islamist politicians realized that there was no Islamist way to tax prostitutes, receive loans from international banks or pave a path that leads to a beerhouse. Individuals could be convinced not to commit adultery, not to work on interest or not to walk into a beerhouse but nation states are not so easily “convertible.”

The experiences of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, the Al-Nahda in Tunisia and the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in Turkey suggest that the nation state has greater power to transform Islamists, who long to alter the state and through it, society. The speed with which the authoritarian tendencies of the nation state invaded the souls, minds and pockets of Islamist politicians is unbelievable.

During the first meeting of the Turkish-Arab Intellectuals Forum, I gave a presentation on the graft operations of Dec. 17 and 25 and the aggressive protectionist measures of the government. Our Arab guests were shocked. This level of corruption was unbelievable to them. One participant said with dismay that if what I had told them was true, besides betraying its own cause, the AK Party had to also bear the sin of letting down Arab Islamists.

I wonder what he would think had he heard the recordings of phone calls between Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his son Bilal…

Source: Todays Zaman , February 26, 2014


Related News

Turkey pays a price for purging counterterror professionals

In the wake of the abortive July 15 coup, he purged thousands of experienced counter-terror police and rotated others out of areas they know best. In effect, this means the Turkish security and police are operating blind. It can take years to gain the experience in any particular locality that those whom Erdogan fired had.

Why Gulen-sympathizers with their babies risk death to flee Erdogan regime

There is a reason why Turks risk death to flee with their babies. It’s not that they are looking for a better life. They are fleeing torture and life imprisonment.

Scholars stress need for dialogue, cooperation to solve global issues

DERVİŞ GENÇ, AYTEN ÇİFTÇİ A two-day symposium during which Islamic scholars from 80 countries exchanged views about ijma, an Islamic term meaning religious consensus, took place in İstanbul over the weekend with participants discussing methods of achieving consensus and stressing the importance of solidarity and cooperation in solving global problems. The event, which was jointly […]

Under Erdogan oppression, autocracy rules in Turkey

A day after Turkey’s notoriously repressive regime led by an autocrat president issued sweeping arrest warrants for 42 journalists on July 25 on all sorts of trumped-up charges, I decided that the time had come for me to pack up and move out of the country.

Islamic scholars convene at ijtihad symposium in İstanbul

Around 100 Islamic scholars from many parts of the world gathered at İstanbul Congress Center at ijtihad conference organized by Yeni ümit and Hira Magazines.

Is the Hizmet movement statist or populist?

In the last three years the AK Party established their new “center” with the new statism away from the periphery. The Hizmet movement viewed this change as a new centralization and thus a new statism and tutelage with new political and capitalist actors. Due to this change in attitude, the Hizmet movement broke faith with Erdoğan and the AK Party.

Latest News

Turkish Food Festival seeks to teach Greenville about Turkey’s culture and cuisine

Chestnut Retreat Center offers a look inside their Saylorsburg facility and its mission

Erdoğan’s overarching purge is not a road accident

Is Gulen the scapegoat of Ankara crisis?

Post-coup purge in Turkey leaves children parentless after mother and father are put behind bars

Turkey’s post-coup purge and persecution makes no exception for children

Fethullah Gülen’s Message of Condolences for the Beirut Explosion

Turkish Cultural Center Hosts Food Drive

Hizmet movement demonized by Erdogan regime but loved abroad

In Case You Missed It

Hee Joong: Differences a richness, not a source of fear

Democracy tree grows in Abant as Turks and Kurds bond

Kimse Yok Mu gives away meat aid to six thousand Afghan families

Gülen rejects labeling of Hizmet as ‘gang,’ calls it ‘traitorous’

Turkey’s failed coup has spread to the classroom in EU states

Cambodia’s Zaman Institutes Get Big-Name Backing

8 detained in police raids on İzmir schools as Erdoğan’s witch hunt continues

Copyright 2020 Hizmet News