Turkey’s Hurriyet discusses recent promotions and demotions in the country’s military, concluding that they highlight the extent to which Ankara’s ruling Islamist Justice and Development Party is succeeding in eroding the influence of army figures. The article specifically deals with defense procurement issues. An annual reshuffling, the article states, “underlines full government control over defense procurement decisions in the future.”
“The new rules, coupled with the profile of the new top brass, mean that we may see a one-man show in procurement in the powerful personality of the prime minister,” said one Ankara-based analyst.
More broadly, the personnel shifts – which involved interventions by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan – have been described as “the latest blow to Turkey’s beleaguered officer corps.” Meanwhile Erdogan announced this week that the government will clamp down on future anti-government protests.
“This country will respond in whatever way necessary with the full power of its security forces,” Erdogan told reporters in Istanbul after prayers marking Eid al-Fitr, the holiday celebrating the end of the Ramadan fast month. “It is very clear that none of these have anything to do with the search for freedom,” he said, referring to protests.
[Photo: Turkish Military Power / YouTube]