How wrong they were.
Fifteen years later, Erdogan holds virtually unchecked power. He has used his office — first as prime minster, now as president — to steadily dismantle democracy, piece by piece. Slowly but surely, he has gutted the judiciary, subdued the legislature and muzzled the press. When did Turkey’s already wounded democracy draw its last breath? It’s hard to say — and that’s precisely the point. Democracy can die a slow, gasping death — so slow that you grow used to its demise.’