With Turkey’s general election approaching and the sharp decline in the Turkish currency, Israel Today contacted Daniel Pipes, a renowned expert on Middle East politics and Islam, to get his take on recent developments. In particular, how will they affect relations with the US and Israel, and is Turkey becoming more Islamist?
Israel Today: The Turkish lira has crashed to a record low of around 13 lira to the US dollar. Just a year ago, it was around 7 lira to the dollar. What’s behind this precipitous decline, and where’s it leading?
Daniel Pipes: The decay of the Turkish currency results from to two policies pursued by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the Turkish strongman. First, he rules despotically, whimsically, and unpredictably. As a result, the foreign direct investment that lifted the economy during the first half of his 19-year rule dried up. Second, he insists on the nutty idea of responding to high inflation with low interest rates, causing inflation to soar and the currency to crater. (This bias probably results at least in part...
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