If a political leader fails repeatedly, it is expected that he will eventually lose power. Throughout his reign as prime minister and president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has admitted many times to being deceived by his allies and best friends. His failures have had a high cost for the country. Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party and the Fethullah Gulen movement, just to name a few, have all managed to mislead Erdogan. Indeed, Gulenists have fooled Erdogan multiple times since the December 2013 corruption scandal. In his frequent public speeches, Erdogan is notorious for uttering a comment and then vehemently retracting or denying it at another appearance.
In any other time and place, a political leader who flip-flops this frequently would pay for it in the next election. This is not the case in Turkey. On the contrary, in every election Erdogan has come out stronger, and in every public gathering he has managed to attract a bigger audience than any other leader in the country. This has been a major embarrassment for the pundits who repeatedly claim Erdogan’s power has diminished.