Reflections

Making the Most of a Coup

Jul 15, 2017 | 14:04 GMT
Supporters of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan rally in Istanbul after last July's failed coup attempt. The would-be coup quickly turned into a political opportunity for Erdogan, who has consolidated his power in the year since.
(BULENT KILIC/AFP/Getty Images)

No state leader likes the thought of putschists plotting to bring him or her down. But Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan certainly knows how to make the most out of a coup attempt. In the year since a faction of the military tried to overthrow his administration, the Turkish president has neutralized a large swath of his political opposition, undertaken major reforms to enhance his powers and stayed the course with his expansionist foreign policy. And though his agenda still faces several obstacles ahead, Erdogan will keep invoking the victimhood narrative to maintain a tight grip on power at home while balancing an increasingly complex set of relationships abroad....

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