Populism Through Uprooted Truths

The role of the pro-government media in Turkey, Part III


A Report from Turkey

The following comes to us on Friday, July 15 from a colleague in Turkey who wishes to remain anonymous.

For the past three hours my friends and I have been listening to a continuous ezan or Islamic call to prayer from the local mosques. The imam, however, is not just summoning the pious to reflect on their spiritual stations, but rallying the faithful behind Turkish President 

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. They are calling for the “preservation of democracy,” but they are also calling for war. The Turkish military, meanwhile, has announced that it has taken over state media and that martial law will be declared. No one is to leave their apartments or step outside. Erdoğan, speaking on Facetime of all things, encouraged his supporters to come out in force, and the imams heeded his call. …

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Claims to Populism, Danger to Democracy?

No US election campaign in living memory has seen as many invocations of “populism” as this one. Both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders are labelled as “populists;” the term is regularly used as a synonym for “anti-establishment,” irrespective of any particular political ideas; it is also associated with particular moods and emotions: populists are “angry,” their voters are “frustrated,” or suffer from “resentment.” Similar claims are made about figures in Europe: Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders are most commonly …