The elections are over. There was record participation and unexpectedly high motivation and mobilization on the part of the voters. Not only were the political parties' organizations active, but also civilian initiatives took place for the first time in Turkish political history, independently of all political movements, to ensure increased transparency with regard to counting votes and the security of polling stations.
These have probably been the most transparent elections in Turkey, where there is a deeply entrenched tradition of organizing free and fair elections, even in very difficult times. But there is unending resistance on the part of opposition parties, primarily the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), as regards the validity of some results. Not that the re-evaluation of the contested ballots, even if they are all revised to the advantage of CHP, could change anything in the outcome of the elections, but this protest attitude, mainly on the part of the CHP, can be understood from two different viewpoints:
First, the main opposition party has been totally by-passed by a voluntary citizen movement trying to render the voting process more transparent and more participative.
The movement is made up essentially of CHP voters, chiefly organized by the Istanbul Bar, held by lawyers very close to the main opposition party. These people have been able to see the derelict and totally inefficient organization of the CHP at polling stations, and they are probably going to question the party organization in the coming weeks and months. By continuously alleging manipulation and shouting foul play, the CHP tries to divert attention from its poor organization and poor performance.
Second, there is a much wider uneasiness among society when it comes to the functioning of the state administration. It has become evident, since Dec. 17, 2013, that the judiciary has been infiltrated by the Gülen Movement, and tribunals are openly used for political purposes. That has created a very deep trauma in a country where the judiciary has never been seen as a strong and independent branch of the state powers, independent of the government.
This time, even the government found itself victimized and attacked by the judiciary.
Much more importantly than this, very recently a major scandal occurred when extremely secret conversations held within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, including the minister, his undersecretary, the head of Turkish Intelligence and the officer second in command of the General Staff of the Armed Forces, were openly leaked to the social media. Such a scandal can only be compared to what happened when British Intelligence was infiltrated by the KGB at the time of Kim Philby.
Public opinion feels understandably very uneasy about this latest development, and no result has yet emerged out of the investigations in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The general mood is very receptive to any foul play within the administration, therefore, protesting against the results of the elections, where there is a very clear and final outcome, can still be paying for the opposition. All the fabricated material leaked to the social media tries to capitalize and exacerbate, to some avail, this uneasiness in public opinion.
However, maybe the main opposition party should begin to realize that abiding by the "scandal agenda" of the Gülen Movement has been a deadly mistake, that it has largely lost the elections by any means and that Turkish democracy is under a very serious threat from an illegal organization.
The sooner they understand the better democratic functioning and policy-making will become in Turkey.