The Changing Role of the Military in Turkish Politics:Democratization through Coup Plots

Gursoy, Yaprak (2012). The Changing Role of the Military in Turkish Politics:Democratization through Coup Plots. Democratization, 19 (4), pp. 735-760.


The exposure of alleged coup plots in 2007 has shaken the guardian role of the Turkish military in politics. What were the conditions that led to the exposure of the coups and what is their significance for the future of Turkish democracy? Drawing on insights from southern Europe, the article argues that failed coup plots can lead to democratic civil–military relations especially if they work simultaneously with other facilitating conditions, such as increasing acceptance of democratic attitudes among officers, consensus among civilians over the role of the military, and the influence of external actors, such as the European Union. The article focuses on such domestic and international factors to analyse the transformation of the Turkish military, the splits within the armed forces and the resulting plots. It argues that one positive outcome of the exposed conspiracies in Turkey has been the enactment of new institutional amendments that would eradicate the remaining powers of the military. Yet, a negative outcome of the coup investigations has been an increase in polarization and hostility. Turkish democracy still lacks mutual trust among significant political groups, which creates unfavourable conditions for democratic consolidation.

Publication DOI:
Divisions: Languages & Social Sciences
Uncontrolled Keywords: Turkey,southern Europe,democratic consolidation,civil-military relations,democratic control of the armed forces,failed coups,Ergenekon,Balyoz,Social Sciences(all)
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Related URLs: https://www.tan ... 347.2011.623352 (Publisher URL)
Published Date: 2012-08
Authors: Gursoy, Yaprak ( 0000-0001-8909-6819)


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