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Center Right, Conservatism, Islamism, and Turkey’s European Vocation 24 novembre 2014

Posted by Acturca in Turkey / Turquie, Turkey-EU / Turquie-UE.
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German Marshall Fund of the United States, November 24, 2014

Galip Dalay *

Turkey’s conservatism is primarily composed of two strands: center-right and Islamic conservatism. From 1946 until the birth of the pro-Islamic National Outlook Movement (NOM) in 1970, Turkey’s conservatism was primarily represented by the center-right parties, known for their pro-European and pro-Western views, largely due to economic interests. From the advent of the NOM to the beginning of the Justice and Development Party (AKParty) rule in 2002, the center-right social base and the Islamists separated. While the center-right constituency by and large continued with their pro-European/Western posture, the Islamists opposed Turkey’s European and Western orientation. With the AKParty’s uninterrupted rule, the center-right social base and the Islamists largely merged within the fold of a single party, which led both groups to reshape each other’s perception of Europe. Instead of categorical opposition or acquiescence, an events-based approach has become the hallmark of Turkish conservatives’ attitude toward Europe.

* Galip Dalay works as a researcher in the political research department at the SETA Foundation in Turkey. He is also the book review editor of Insight Turkey . His opinion articles have appeared in AJE Opinion, AJE Magazine, Huffington Post, World Politics Review, Fair Observers , and in major Turkish dailies.

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