Search

 

Cablegate: Turkey: Expanding Opposition Horizons

null
Dianne Wampler 12/06/2006 10:48:48 AM From DB/Inbox: Dianne Wampler

Cable
Text:


C O N F I D E N T I A L ANKARA 06585

SIPDIS
CX:
ACTION: POL
INFO: CONS TSR PMA DAO ECON DCM AMB RAO FCS PA MGT

DISSEMINATION: POL /1
CHARGE: PROG

APPROVED: AMB:RWILSON
DRAFTED: POL:JGWEINER
CLEARED: PA:DSREEBNY, DCM:NMCELDOWNEY

VZCZCAYI450
PP RUEHC RUEAIIA RHEHAAA
DE RUEHAK #6585 3391351
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 051351Z DEC 06
FM AMEMBASSY ANKARA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0192
INFO RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L ANKARA 006585

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/29/2016
TAGS: PREL PGOV TU US
SUBJECT: TURKEY: EXPANDING OPPOSITION HORIZONS
PRE-ELECTION: GETTING THEM TO WASHINGTON


Classified By: Ambassador Ross Wilson, reasons 1.4 (b), (d)

1. (SBU) Prior to Turkey's 2007 parliamentary elections, it
is time to expand to Washington our outreach to Turkish
opposition leaders. Two, three or perhaps more are likely to
be in the next government and they need to start to
understand the realities and challenges of the relationship
first hand. End summary.

2. (SBU) Peering around the corner at Turkey in 2007,
parliamentary elections that must take place by November are
likely to result in a coalition government. The math is
simple: Only two parties overcame Turkey,s 10% threshold in
2002, handing both the ruling Justice and Development Party
(AKP) and the Republic People's Party (CHP) parliamentary
seats disproportionate to their actual electoral strength.
Two other parties -- the True Path Party (DYP) and the
Nationalist Action Party (MHP) -- came very close but failed
to make it over the 10% threshold. The result has been over
four years of one-party AKP government.

3. (C) Chances are excellent that one, if not both, DYP and
MHP will join AKP and CHP in parliament a year from now. AKP
and CHP remain likely to take the two largest chunks, making
DYP and MHP the potential king-makers. If AKP forms the next
government, its most likely partner would be Mehmet Agar's
DYP. For the CHP to take power, it would logically turn to
Devlet Bahceli's MHP, or even attempt a coalition of all AKP
rivals.

4. (C) CHP and MHP in particular often tout an anti-American
(and even anti-EU) line that is gaining in strength as
elections near. It is opportunist politics. Now is the time
for us to (a) engage these parties more forcefully and (b)
give them a sense of what it feels like to bear the
responsibilities of dealing on the world stage.

5. (SBU) We of course have frequent working level contacts in
Ankara, Istanbul, Adana, as well as in the course of our
travels around the country. In the new year, we will be
renewing and intensifying our outreach efforts here in
Turkey. We also intend to continue to include opposition
party representatives when USG officials come to consult on
regional issues such as Iran, Iraq or the Caucasus.

6. (C) This is a crucial time for Turkey and this region.
For opposition leaders, we propose leveraging greater
exposure to the U.S. and U.S.-based NGOs and think tanks.
Opposition figures from other major allies do this regularly.
One such possibility would be via Brookings, which we
understand is planning to bring Turkish NGO and think tank
reps to Washington. This would have the dual advantage of
exposing these leaders to the U.S. and different circles in
Washington and vice versa. The Washington Institute is
another option, and we may be able to involve groups such as
the German Marshall Fund and American Turkish Council (ATC)
to help as well. ATC, for example, could at a minimum invite
opposition party representatives, along with GOT officials,
to its annual conference in late March. Programs should
ideally also include meetings on the Hill, as well as with
State Department and other agency officials as available.
This sort of exposure will prepare us mutually for the next
iteration of democratically elected government in Ankara,
just as it teaches them first-hand about our system and our
priorities.

7. (C) Parties here may not be universally receptive, at
least initially. Their bread and butter -- especially CHP
and MHP -- has been bashing the U.S. It is all too easy to
complain, without providing an alternative vision, when a
party is in opposition. It is harder to do so once in power
and dealing with regional realities. The earlier Turkey's
opposition leaders have a first-hand sense of how those
realities play in Washington (and in Brussels and London, for
example), the fewer the bumps in their initial foreign policy
leadership roads. If one goes and enjoys a good program,
others may feel irresistable pressure to follow. It is
important that these programs be non-partisan and
all-inclusive.

Visit Ankara's Classified Web Site at
http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/eur/ankara/

WILSON

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

ALRANZ: Denounces US Senate Confirmation Of Judge Barrett

ALRANZ Abortion Rights Aotearoa denounces the US Senate’s confirmation of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court seat formerly held by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. “This action demonstrates the rank hypocrisy of the once-respected upper chamber ... More>>

OECD: COVID-19 Crisis Puts Migration And Progress On Integration At Risk, Says

Watch the live webcast of the press conference Migration flows have increased over the past decade and some progress has been made to improve the integration of immigrants in the host countries. But some of these gains may be erased by the COVID-19 pandemic ... More>>

Reporters Without Borders: Julian Assange’s Extradition Hearing Marred By Barriers To Open Justice

After monitoring four weeks of evidence in the US extradition proceedings against Wikileaks publisher Julian Assange, Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reiterates concern regarding the targeting of Assange for his contributions to journalism, and calls ... More>>

OHCHR: Stranded Migrants Need Safe And Dignified Return – UN Migrant Workers Committee

The UN Committee on Migrant Workers has today called on governments to take immediate action to address the inhumane conditions of migrant workers who are stranded in detention camps and ensure they can have an orderly, safe and dignified return to ... More>>