HKS Authors

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Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy


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. During its first term in government, between 2002 and 2007, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's Justice and Development Party (AKP) worked hard to bring the country into the European Union, to reform its legal regime, and to relax restrictions on Kurds. But more recently, the same government has been responsible for a politics of deception, dirty tricks, fear, and intimidation that couldn't present a sharper contrast to its rhetoric on 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.


Rodrik, Dani. "The Death of Turkey's Democracy." Wall Street Journal Europe, June 23, 2010.