Erdogan invents a new slogan for Kilicdaroglu: "Bye bye Kemal"
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has invented a new campaign slogan for opposition CHP (Republican People's Party) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu, escalating his condescending tone that has been ongoing for some time.
"Here is a new slogan for him after he liked the previous one: "Bay bay Kemal," Erdogan wrote on Twitter on Tuesday.
For years, Erdogan rarely called his political rival by his full name, instead using the nickname "Bay Kemal," -roughly Mr. Kemal in English- a title that alludes to Turkey's elitist past and helps Erdogan's rhetoric portray himself as the savior of the pious, who have been oppressed for decades by secular elites.
"Bay" and, for women, "bayan" were coined in the early years of the Turkish Republic during a "language revolution" as equivalents to monsieur and madame in French, as part of the Westernization effort during that period that created a negative connotation in the lives of ordinary people.
Kilicdaroglu, however, launched a surprising counterattack last year when he used the nickname for himself as well, as in his recent slogan "Mr. Kemal is coming," prepared for his anti-corruption campaign.
“Bay” is also Turkish transliteration of “bye,” so Erdogan with his new slogan implies that Kilicdaroglu, if nominated as a candidate against himself, is destined to fail.