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Locating Susurluk affair into the context of legal-political theory : a case of extra-legal activities of the modern states

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2004
Sabuktay, Ayşegül
The study locates Susurluk Affair into the legal-political theory, around an axis passing through two standpoints that defines the state either as a legal or as a political institution. Two words, أSusurluk Affairؤ refer to an accumulation of incidents and relationships that point to extra-legal activities of the state that are revealed by a traffic accident in Turkey. Susurluk Affair and similar cases of extra-legal activities of the state are frequent in modern political life, although the modern state is founded on the presumption of legal use of public authority. Susurluk Affair is discussed with reference to Max Weber̕s and Jürgen Habermas̕s theories of the rule of law, and Hans Kelsen̕s legal positivism, both of which provide perspectives that define the state as a legal institution, and from the viewpoints of doctrine of raison d̕etat and Carl Schmitt̕s theories of the political and sovereignty that conceptualize the state as a political institution. Susurluk Affair can be interpreted in accordance with Weber̕s, Habermas̕s and Kelsen̕s theoretical standpoints either as a deficiency in legitimacy or violations by certain persons, however it can be interpreted as activities for maintaining the state in the framework of the doctrine of raison d̕etat. On the other hand, the Schmittian approach acknowledges extra-legal activities of the state, but Susurluk Affair cannot be interpreted as a case of deciding the exception in the Schmittian sense.