Robert M. Cutler

Dani Rodrik, Rafiq Hariri Professor of International Political Economy at Harvard University’s Kennedy School, was born in Istanbul. He writes:

I no longer recognize Turkey, the country where I was raised and spend most of my time when I am not teaching in the U.S.

It wasn’t so long ago that the country seemed to be taking significant strides in the direction of human rights and democracy. …

Several Turkish intellectuals abroad who have expressed critical views have told me they are afraid to return to Turkey. Eavesdropping has reached such levels that even housewives refrain from chatting about “sensitive” matters on the phone.

The AKP government has launched massive, politically motivated court cases against its opponents. The main purpose of the prosecutions seems to be to discredit the accused and keep them under detention for as long as possible. …

It’s clear now that Turkey is no longer the liberalizing, emerging democracy under the AKP that it was only a few years ago. It’s time the U.S. and Europe stopped treating it as such—both for their own sakes, and for the sake of the Turkish people.

Read the full text of this important testimony here, also in connection with my earlier blog post EU Uncritical of Turkish Constitution Package.

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