Monday, September 13, 2010

Islamism's Great Leap Forward In Turkey

J.E. Dyer notes, quite correctly that a particularly ominous development occurred this weekend in Turkey.

The Turks voted in a series of 'reforms' to its constitution that, aside from giving the policies of Islamist regime of Tayyip Erdogan and the AKP a referendum emasculates the two moderating forces in Turkey; the army and the courts.

First, the changes will allow Erdogan to try the military officers who seized control of the government in 1980 in civil court. This also sets a precedent for him to try the army officers he's had arrested on trumped up charges who haven't been tried yet in the same venue.

This sounds good until you realize that under Turkey's constitution, the army is officially the guardian of Turkey's secular government designed for them by Kemal Ataturk.The 1980 coup, like others before it, was designed to depose Islamist movements from overthrowing Turkey's secular democracy. That safeguard is now seriously eroded.

The other major change increases Turkey's constitutional court from 11 to 17 judges and gives Erdogan the power to hand pick and appoint 14 of them, with the legislature choosing the other three. This allows Erdogan to pack the court with Islamist judges answerable to him and the regime.

As Paul over at Powerline notes, given Erdogan's sinister record on free speech, freedom of the press and women's rights this is a particularly ominous development.

It also goes a long way towards ensuring that the regime survives in power for a long time.

(via memeorandum

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