Erdoğan and the July 15 spirit

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who could not be deputy in the Nov. 2, 2002 elections because of a court ruling on him, participated in the deputy renewal election held in Siirt province on March 9, 2003, when the obstacle preventing him was lifted with a legal regulation. He garnered 85 percent of the vote and entered Parliament as the 22nd period Siirt deputy. March 9 was the day of reunion for those awaiting Erdoğan, for those who tied hopes to him.

Psychological time goes by very slowly and the collective memory archives are based on similarities. Erdoğan was party chairman in 2002, but he was not allowed to enter Parliament. Later, he came to power and after that, he was elected president. But this time the system separated him from his party. The emotions, expectations and hopes from March 9 are becoming revived again now. Whatever it was that excited and gave hope to the people awaiting Erdoğan on March 9, 2002, the same applies for the May 21 reunion. What's more is the dimension, power and impact of this second reunion is much greater. While in the last 15 years, the trust bred by these feelings and emotions toward Erdoğan multiplied within the country by three, it encompassed the entire Muslim world and started to spread through the oppressed on the face of the earth. The Erdoğan name has become Turkey's biggest brand, a symbol of the oppressed against the world sovereign system.

Three closely related factors have a role in Erdoğan's success: God given skill, incredible ambition and zealotry and the ability to follow new policies appropriate to new conditions. The best term that could be found to explain the mass attraction power in this triple-factor success, which we also frequently mention, is “charisma.” Charisma is related to humans being social beings. Communities, especially at times of crises, attribute charisma to certain people among them. Just as people are different in terms of physical qualities, intelligence, memory, they also differ in terms of charismatic skill. Those who have charismatic skill stand out with the qualities of understanding the communities and people among which they live, realize the community's needs and make efforts to meet those needs. Their inclination to devoting themselves to their communities and always thinking about the whole is very strong. The community also understands this character and sensitivity that they have and want to bring to leadership a charismatic individual.

Our community has been struggling against crises ever since the decline of the Ottoman Empire; is has been struggling for modernization and democratization specific to itself. Modernization and democratization both require institutionalization, but this does not come easily and usually requires a charismatic leadership. Charismatic leadership is going to remain important for the resolution of our problems for a while longer and nobody else other than Erdoğan can be seen in the horizon to assume the responsibility.

At this last stage of our own struggle for modernization and democratization, the community has added new hopes and expectations to Erdoğan's charisma. Each time, they embraced him a lot more. Erdoğan's duty was to eliminate the tutelage system and the separation of state-nation caused by that system, to try and turn a community that has predominantly rural characteristics and is clustered around the suburbs in cities, in to a producing, modern and urban community and say, “Turkey is included” in the international system. He largely achieved all this. He took the fundamental steps that were necessary to change the system that has been tying us down.

During this period, many side effects, complications, weakening and corrosion – problems caused by the new circumstances – also surfaced. There have always been earnest, legitimate oppositions who believed that taking a different path would be better. They are always welcome. But outside forces that wanted to prevent Turkey from ever making such moves and their local conspirators did not remain idle either. The Fetullahist Terror Organization (FETÖ) was the actual point of betrayal, the main center where plots and traps were set. Each time, they tried everything to stop Erdoğan. They tried to make their best move on July 15, 2016. The nation negated the coup and civil war scenarios plotted by the hand of FETÖ on July 15 and turned the trauma in to victory. The people showed that they were siding with the country and Turkey's march by displaying a struggle that cost lives, by using their bodies as shields. The July 15 resistance became proof that nation-state-leader and democracy were tied with strong bonds.

The aim and subject of our great march is to raise the future of our nation, national power to the maximum level. While Erdoğan was the hope solely of a single segment on March 9, 2002, he is now the hope of the social backbone and, as a matter of fact, the hope of the entire Muslim community. Thanks to him, now, our system has also been shaped in accordance with the great leadership. Today, as millions wait to reunite with him, they are giving him the mission to lead our march with a program that is befitting of the “Turkey of big cities,” that takes as basis the oneness and unity spirit of July 15, that takes our nation as the subject, not a single segment. Dear Mr. President, our hearts and prayers are with you; your success is our nation's success.

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