Post-July15 writing

Below are the pieces I wrote since the attempted coup on July 15.

Turkey’s Last Coup: What I Saw in Ankara: I was running around the streets almost all night during the coup and the next morning, trying to figure out what was happening. I then went home, downed a couple cans of Red Bull, and wrote out my observations as best as I could.

It’s still hard to believe it happened. It’s as if the whole country phased out of reality for a night, and as we now know, never really found its way back.

Fetullah Gülen’s Race to the Top is Over: Immediately after the coup, the government blamed the Gülen movement began to purge it from state  institutions (later also from business, academia, media, and other parts of society.) My TEPAV colleague Hüseyin Raşit Yılmaz and I wrote this piece to give readers context into why the Gülenist purge was focusing on education, especially in its early days. The piece ended up being one of the first to zoom out and give non-Turkey watchers an idea of the civil war between the AK Party government and the Gülenists.

The Meaning of Turkey’s Five Million Strong Nationalist Movement: Immediately after the post-July 15 period, it was clear that the AK Party government was more powerful than ever before. For those who were against the coup but also opposed the government’s increasingly authoritarian leanings, it was (and remains) a very scary and pessimistic time. The truth is though, that things can always get worse. This piece was an exercise in thinking about the forces that prevented those worse outcomes from happening.

I have since been traveling a lot and took some time off from work. In the coming weeks and months, I will be going back to my usual beat of political Islam, Turkish politics and the occasional bit of political economy.

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