Turkey and PKK terrorism
Baylouny, Anne Marie
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In this thesis, Turkey’s struggle against PKK terrorism is analyzed to find an answer to the main research question of this thesis: “Why has Turkey not overcome the PKK and its terrorism after thirty years of struggle?” To accomplish this, two subquestions are asked. The first sub-question deals with the perceptions and consequences of terrorism. Consequently, the thesis seeks a comprehensive understanding the motivations of both PKK cadres and Turkish decision makers. The second sub-question seeks to answer the question of why Turkish countermeasures against the PKK’s tactics did not put an end to it. Likewise, the second question seeks reasons why PKK terrorism has not achieved the group’s political objectives. Hence, the thesis described the mistakes of both parties in the interactive process. The main argument of this thesis is that Turkey has not managed to destroy the PKK because it is entrapped by the PKK’s tactics, which aim to make the adversary overreact and force its adversary to implement measures which have counterproductive unintended consequences. Hence, the thesis argues that the PKK has successfully created a gap between the Turkish state and its Turkish citizens with Kurdish origin. Consequently, the PKK has managed to survive for thirty years by convincing these alienated Turkish Kurds to tacitly support the terrorist group.
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