The things you own end up owning you.

Baykal Forever

CHP’s 69 year old leader Deniz Baykal once more ready to rule the party forever. This is a kind of attitude inherited in the genetic code of the CHP. Ismet Inönü was 88 years old in his last fight against the youth in the 1972 Congress. Bülent Ecevit was 47 years old and Deniz Baykal was by then 34. Bülent Ecevit was 81 years old by the time he died and was still active in politics. We can therefore speculate that Deniz Baykal will also not choose the way nobody chose in the CHP tradition. It is of course a very strange situation for a party who officially declares itself as the centre-of left political party, a member of the Socialist International to be undemocratic in its own inner affairs.

Baykal even went ahead of Inönü and Ecevit in sidelining all possible sources of opposition within the CHP. This of course creates an atmosphere of a Stalinist leadership attitude, which is unfortunately also in great dosages exists in virtually all political parties in Turkey, which eliminates any critic and urges complete obedience to the leader. Furthermore, it closes the road of every ambitious politician to present his ideas if not in accord with the leaders. It reminds me the days of the “Milli Sef” – National Chief Inönü during the 1939-1945 period. The National Chief was the above all personality, the glorification of the Hobbesian state/society complex. 63 Years from them, the same attitude is still visible and the only rule in town.

Baykal’s method is the method of a polite bureau like an inner circle, mainly retired members of the highest echelons of the Turkish bureaucracy, members of the Vanguard. These are extremely loyal to the leader and do not question anything at any time. nobody asks the election results, and the defeat of its provocative policy. 67 year old Onur Öymen is a perfect example of the member of the inner circle. His expertise in Foreign Policy, his career and heavy stance is nevertheless works in tandem with the leader.

So we can say that the story will go long, Baykal forever, he can hop up from the foggy atmosphere in a Ritchie Martin style, he can walk 10 km at 5 o’clock in the morning, he can swim to Rhodes, he can be the PM of Turkey and the show will go on… Baykal forever…


April 25, 2008 - Posted by | Turkish daily, Turkish Politics

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