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Nationalists Abroad

While facing an uphill political battle at home, Turkey’s recently re-elected President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan handily won the diaspora vote. He did so by capitalizing on the resentment and alienation felt by second- and third-generation Turkish immigrants who often feel estranged in the countries where they were born.

BERLIN – President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan probably did not need the votes of German- and Dutch-Turkish citizens to prevail in Turkey’s recent presidential election. Even so, Erdoğan won a majority of the international vote, including nearly 70% of the votes in Germany and the Netherlands. Since not all Germans or Dutch with a Turkish background vote in Turkish elections, such statistics need to be treated with care. But right-wing Turkish nationalism does appear to have a strong appeal among dual citizens. And such overseas nationalists tend to be noisy about their convictions, driving through German cities honking their horns and shouting political slogans.