Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Turkish referendum: implications for democracy and world peace

According to a Dutch news site, 71% of expatriate Turks living in the Netherlands voted in favour of Erdogan's power grab - that is, 71% of the merely one-third of those who chose to take part in the referendum:


Similarly, in Germany 61% of votes favoured Erdogan, but the "high" turnout was only 48.7%:


Yet in Switzerland, 62% said no:


- possibly reflecting the better wealth and education of those who settled there.

Would the results have been much different if all Turks in Europe had been made to vote?

Or are the significant factors:

(a) who is allowed to come into the country,
(b) why they chose to come and
(c) what efforts the host country has made both to welcome the immigrant and to insist on integration into the political and social culture of the country?

My recent EU dystopia (envisioning what might have happened had PM Blair taken us into the Eurozone, as he wished) imagined not only the defeat of the British Army in Ukraine as a result of EU empire-building, but the rise of a Turkish President who exploits the idiotic free-movement openness of the EU to blackmail it into sending him his UK-based opponents so he can eliminate them.

In the same piece, I also looked at the role of Turkey as a NATO counterweight to perceived Russian expansionism, and the possible diplomatic reorientation of the Greeks as they continue to suffer from the economic imbalances within the EU.

Maybe not such a fantasy. Are the attractive yet dangerously naive "Alle Menschen werden Brüder" ideals of the EU to be used against it, judo-like, by a strongman who has ambitions for the Middle East?

What are the conditions for, the limits to, democracy?


wiggiatlarge said...

The only thing that can be taken for the polling figures in Europe is that the Turks are split as at home.
The low turnout means that most who stayed home were happy with not voting and staying in an environment they prefer to their homeland and those that voted belong to the increasing hard Islamic factions that are it seems wherever they congregate in large numbers, posing the same problems here in Europe as increasingly in Turkey and elsewhere.

James Higham said...

Let the game commence.