Gareth Jenkins writes about the arrests of journalists critical of the Gülen movement as part of a larger power struggle between PM Erdogan and the Gülen movement. He suggests that the Gülenists, through their influence in the security forces and courts, have shut down any critical media voices by accusing them of belonging to a terrorist organization – Ergenekon, which originally had been construed as a series of coup plots against the AKP government by rogue elements of the “deep state”, but has since taken on the characteristics of a witch hunt (my term) against anyone critical of the Gülen movement.
This has tarnished not only the Ergenekon case (which Jenkins claims was already plagued by faulty evidence), but also embarrassed the AKP which is entering a new election in June on a platform of democracy and freedom of expression. The blatant arrests have led to mounting international criticism. Jenkins sees the recent removal of the Ergenekon chief prosecutor Zekeriya Öz as an opening salvo in Erdogan’s attempt to reassert power. Jenkins also points to a split within AKP: PM Erdogan (who belongs to the Naqshbandi Sufi order) wishes to change to a presidential system in which he can become president, while President Gül (who Jenkins says has the support of the Gülen movement) opposes this move. (click here for the full article; thanks, Hans, for bringing it to my attention.)