…Just as all Muslims must oppose the ideology of al-Qaeda and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), vicious terrorist groups that plan to overthrow governments in Muslim nations and establish a caliphate based on their perverted interpretation of Islam, Turks must also confront efforts by Erdoğan and his ideological allies to turn this great country into a bastion for a hypocritical authoritarian regime that simply abuses Islamic references to sustain its power.
Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, the key moderate mainstream Muslim leader, has become Erdoğan's main target because Gülen is leading the charge in the battle to counter the extremist ideology of political Islamists. With his strong, principled stand rooted in solid and clear religious references, Gülen exposed the hypocrisy of Erdoğan's political Islamist regime, which had promised to root out corruption, favoritism and mismanagement in Turkey, as well as adventurism and interference abroad.
Erdoğan lost his credibility and the trust of the people amid tightening political oppression and increasingly partisan governance in Turkey. His long-running cunning game is over. In a futile attempt, he is trying to hold on to power for fear of being defenseless in the face of potential charges in the future for constitutional crimes and criminal acts.
Excerpted from the author's column published on Today's Zaman, 29 December 2014, Monday