Germany was the one that reported that we should bring Turkey and the EU closer. Each time I called Erdoğan, who was then prime minister, he would ask what more can Turkey do in the area of democratization, and I would make various suggestions. Erdoğan fulfilled all the democratization efforts I suggested. I ask, what changed? Did Turkey change? Or is it us? Now we call Erdoğan a dictator. We are very wrong and mistaken and we must turn from this mistake at once.
There is a consensus on Islam as a kind of scapegoat for everything we do not happen to like about the world’s new political, social and economic patterns. For the right, Islam represents barbarism; for the left, medieval theocracy; for the center, a kind of distasteful exoticism. In all camps, however, there is agreement that even though little enough is known about the Islamic world, there is not much to be approved of there.
Edward W. Said
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is also known as Leader, Master, Sir, Conqueror of Davos, and World Leader while the opposition calls him the New Sultan and Dictator. Regardless of the angle, regardless of in which ideological frames it is analyzed, Erdoğan being the greatest success story after Mustafa Kemal Atatürk in the history of Turkish politics is an undebatable fact. Therefore, a history of politics written without taking Erdoğan into consideration from multiple angles would not make it possible to understand Turkey’s critical democratization and transformation processes.
Erdoğan is an important politician who has been able to show the courage to challenge the status quo on a global scale. As much as he dared to break the idols of the established order in Turkey, he is a powerful politician who exclaimed to sovereign powers in the name of the oppressed, that the world is bigger than five, who made the world accept that the New Turkey is now a noteworthy actor against oppression and oppressors. This study, while developing different angles in relation to Erdoğan’s political career and characteristics, also tries to take a socio-political picture of Western based fear: Erdoganophobia.
Erdoganophobia is a serious political disease that entered our agenda in recent years and breeds on opposition to and enmity for Erdoğan. The reactions against Erdoğan ever since he first stepped foot onto the political scene grew as he continued climbing up the steps of politics, increasingly turning to indigestion, enmity and, eventually, disease. Erdoğan has faced reactions throughout his political career due to the reformist suggestions he made in the parties in which he was a member and has been considered a dangerous political rival approached with concern.
However, despite the relentless attacks from the opposition in every election in which he has taken part, thanks to the politics of empathy he established with the public, he made his mark as an indispensable dynamo of change and transformation. His opponents have made almost a principle of developing a political tone through politics of fear against Erdoğan.