Islamic resurgence in Turkey? An analysis of political and social elements
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Myth and hysteria are probably the two most common attributes of western discourse on Islamic fundamentalism. Current discussions in policy circles often depict this 'green menace' as a threat to the stability of regimes friendly to the United States. A recent incarnation of this argument is the suggestion, following apparent unprecedented electoral gains by Islamic fundamentalists in 1991, that Turkey may be the next Iran or Algeria. This thesis debunks the 'fundamentalist threat' argument in Turkey by critically examining the evidence used to support such an argument. A careful examination of the election results in 1991 shows the Islamic fundamentalists actually suffered a decline in electoral support. The thesis concludes that the secular democratic nature of the Turkish republic is not seriously threatened by Islamic fundamentalism, and that the evidence used to suggest such a development does not stand up to critical scrutiny.
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