Erdoğan’s Looming Downfall

Journal Article March 5, 2014, Middle East Forum, Spring 2014, Volume 21, Number 2

The year 2013 was supposed to be momentous for Turkey’s strongman, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Having established himself as the single most powerful Turkish politician since Kemal Atatürk, he sought to transform Turkey into a presidential republic in 2013 then accede to the presidency in 2014 where he could remain until the republic’s centenary in 2023. But toward the end of the year, the tables turned. Far from looking forward to a decade of uninterrupted rule, Erdoğan’s hold on Turkey looked increasingly fragile, and many began asking how long he could stay in power.