Speaking in Adana before being elected executive president, Erdoğan said, “Authorise this brother of yours on the 24th and you will see how these interest rates and this and that will be tackled.” It defied comprehension at that time what authority he considered to be lacking, but he presumably has no remaining excuse after having emerged victorious from the election.
The result is for us all to see. He has tackled interest rates and this and that to such an extent that there remains no currency that the Turkish lira has not devalued against. Neither the dollar, nor the euro nor the pound are rising. The lira is plummeting.
It was said that with the arrival of the executive presidency, bureaucracy would disappear and speedy decision making would be enabled. No announcement worthy of the name had been forthcoming from anyone for days. Then Erdoğan came out and spoke. The solution to the economic crisis he came up with was marvellous: “If they have their dollar, we have our Allah.”
Following the major 2007 economic crisis, vast quantities of money were printed to avert a collapse of the world economy. This money went on world tours. A good amount also stopped off in our country. We took it and buried it in concrete. Now countries are closing in on themselves and raising interest rates. There is none of this world-touring money left. Customs barriers are rising and in many places investors are fleeing to their own countries. What are we left with? Malls and the concrete pillars you have thrust into the bare flanks of our cities.
And no shortage of heroism. We are experiencing a real-life version the kids’ fairy tale in which the frog that tries to emulate the ox swells up and explodes.
The crony economy and pooled tender regime has run into the wall. Our country is in a position of weakness the like of which it has not seen in recent history. Not only is it bereft of negotiating power, but the Eurasian forces who were seen as being a hope for salvation are rubbing their hands at the prospect of bringing this troubled country into their sphere of influence at miniscule cost.
Proclaiming the regime’s arbitrariness and weakness to the whole wide world with the making of virtually an international undertaking in the form, “Hand over the priest, take the priest and let’s fix things for him with the judiciary” comes as the final straw.
Oh, you impudent ones who imagined yourselves to be “national” as if this lent permanence to the state; oh, you impudent cardboard heroes who in the vain fantasy of resuscitating the Ottoman order have dragged the country behind you to the precipice.
Oh, you impudent fellows who erased from history institutions that have continued ever since the Ottoman period and, having entrusted the entire country to one person and his close entourage, talk deliriously to yourselves as if in prayer before retiring each night of having strengthened the state.
Narrowly-focused strategists who have sacrificed the whole country to a delusion ever since the Arab spring.
Oh, impudent regime media that earns its crust from lies and deceiving the people.
Devotees of civilian politics who watched on as the cult appearing before you usurped every institution of the state.
You have no excuse. Was it power you wanted? You have it all. The judiciary is yours, and the executive, and the legislative. The Central Bank is in your clutches, too. Business circles, unable to emit a peep, are yours as well. The workers, whom you boasted of preventing from striking under the state of emergency, are impotent. You have razed the opposition.
Nobody is organised and courageous enough to hold a ten-minute protest on the street.
What you bequeathed was a thornless rose garden. You ate the roses and impaled us all with their thorns.
So as to strengthen one person, you weakened an entire state and left it vulnerable to interference of all kinds.
You have ruined this country, gentlemen.