Ok, now it really is getting interesting in the Middle East war. Unless you’ve been off-grid, you’ve undoubtedly heard about the ongoing coup attempt in Turkey. As I watched the coup unfold in near-realtime across a variety of media, it became apparent that everybody is spinning the event to their own purposes, and many pumping out disinformation.
Do the Turkish people (as if there is a monolithic Turkish population) support the military, or do they support President Erdogan? How will this affect NATO, or the American military presence in Turkey, particularly our use of the Incirlik Air Base in SW Turkey? How will it affect the Syrian war? What will the Russians do?
All these, and more, are good valuable questions. And of course, everybody has gone into propaganda hyperdrive trying to push their own agenda and view out there to take hold. So I did a bit of backgrounding, and came across a very interesting piece by Scott Bennett (ignore the popup, just click outside it to read):
Scott Bennett is a U.S. Army Special Operations Officer (11th Psychological Operations Battalion, Civil Affairs-Psychological Operations Command), and a global psychological warfare and counter-terrorism analyst, formerly with defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. [yeah, that Booz Allen Hamilton of Ed Snowden notoriety]
This piece of analysis (again, ignore the popup — or read it and then continue by clicking outside the box) was written Dec. 6, 2015, so it is not tainted by today’s events. Of course, one must take into account the nature of the person writing this, as obviously he had a particular bent when working as a psyop analyst. But it sets a good stage that contrasts with most of what is pouring out of the media and inner tubes today — particularly in the West’s mainstream english-speaking media.
I’ll post a clip from it, and this can be an open thread to talk about the ongoing events as the coup unfolds in Turkey. It will undoubtedly be several days before the situation begins to clarify, and we see where it may lead Turkey and the region in the future.
REPLACING PRESIDENT ERDOGAN: THE COMING MILITARY COUP D’ETAT IN TURKEY
As the old saying goes, “What’s good for the goose, is good for the gander.”
— 06 December 2015
Geopolitically this means, “What the U.S. did to Ukraine, Russia can do to Turkey.”
As Russian President Vladimir Putin alluded to, it is only a matter of time before Turkey’s military recognize the courage, strength, and wisdom Allah has blessed them with as warriors, and act as warriors by defending their own Turkish citizens from the insane and self-destructive recklessness of President Erdogan—who will very soon bring down upon Turkey the curses of God and his destruction if he is not forcibly removed from power by the righteousness of the Turkish military. As much as Allah has taken away Erdogan’s mind, Allah will defend all soldiers who work to free Turkey from Erdogan’s tyrannical and sinful grasp.
As a former psychological warfare officer, I look at this problem and solution through the enemy’s eyes, first and foremost, for it is the only way to “influence the mind and heart” of the enemy. So here is what the Turkish Muslim will think and act.
The average Turk will understand now that Turkey has a very simple choice: Either replace insanity with intelligence and weakness with power, and thereby soon discover a new destiny of peace, independence, wealth, prosperity, and hope; or continue on the present insane, downward course Turkey’s President Erdogan is chasing, and inevitably be hated, torn apart, and eventually forgotten by the world (and Allah) under the smoldering ashes of civil war and destruction. Only the Turkish military has the honor and courage to make this choice, for only the Turkish soldier has the strength to resist becoming himself a tyrant who betrays trust by harming the civilians who obey them, and hurting Allah who loves them.
This means Allah has created Turkey’s military to save the Turkish people. Allah knows Turkey’s military are the only men with the honor and intelligence to save their nation from slavery or destruction.
Erdogan has been practicing magic, going to soothsayers and fortune tellers, and accessing the occult—issues that are strictly forbidden in Islam. He has also been murdering journalists who have exposed the criminal oil smuggling operation he and his son have organized. This is a sin against Islam, and must be cleansed from Turkey’s name and her people.
The military must stop this because it is bringing a curse upon Turkey in the eyes of the world…
This is not Turkey’s first coup. http://time.com/4408850/turkey-coup-history/
I seem to remember Erdogon culling established military leadership as he consolidated power. Must have missed some.
This is bad news. Ergodan was erratic but moderate when one looks at the politics of the Middle East. And he was elected by the people. What’s the military trying to accomplish? I’m guessing a police state in the wake of the many, recent terrorist attacks. Turkey is a beautiful country with a history that Westerners can’t even fathom. It has always a bridge between the West and Middle East, and accepting of both.
I have friends in Ankara and worry about them.
facilitating terrorists to enter Syria, cracking down on journalists, suppressing internet sites, weaponizing refugees to extort Europe, shooting down a Russian war plane.
you sure have a funny notion of what constitutes being a “moderate”, Pete.
Erdogan may have been “elected” (lots of corruption allegations) president, but in Turkey the power rests in the the Prime Minister, while the presidency has a predominantly ceremonial and politically neutral role. Erdogan has turned that on its head and has assumed all political power — in essence assuming an unelected role as Prime Minister and relegating the current PM to a ceremonial figurehead. This behavior is what people fear is just his extending his authoritarianism into a permanent dictatorship and resurrecting the Ottoman and becoming Sultan.
After reading more on the “coup,” it doesn’t appear to be as much a battle between Islamists and secularists but more of an insider power struggle between Erdogan and the followers of Hizmet (or Fethullah Gulen, if you prefer). This conflict has been going on for a couple of decades.
And please revisit my “moderate” label in its context of, “when one looks at the politics of the Middle East.” Compared to Syria’s Assad, the House of Saudi or the former despots in Iraq and Egypt (Hussein and Mubarak, respectively) Erdogan would be a “moderate.”
It would seem to me that the thousands who took to the streets supporting Erdogan, or perhaps more so, protesting against the coup, would indicate some level of support for Erdogan’s administration.
Anyway, just like the rise of nationalists in Western Europe and Trump in the U.S., in troubled times, authoritarian figures play a bigger role. For better or worse, and I’m leaning worse here, it is the peoples’ choice.
Kinda says it all.
“Democracy is like a train: when you reach your destination, you get off.”
— President of Turkey Recep Erdogan while mayor of Istanbul in the 90s
The coup failed. I too feel sorry for the people of Turkey because of Ergodan’s new love affair with terrorists. All this was predicted over 2 thousand years ago.
“On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves.”-Old Testament.
The real reason we left Iraq, green lighted Iran’s production on nuclear arms, destabilized Libya, and will leave Afghanistan like Viet Nam was to complete that prophecy.
Evil will have its day.
Zechariah 12:3 The rock too heavy to lift. The House of David=Kings of Judah until 597 BCE Exile.The hereditary seed of David leaders in Babylon during Exile. The male seed of David differently traced up and down to Joseph, by Matthew and Luke.
Also, let’s not forget that Turkey houses somewhere between 50-90 B61 strategic/tactical nuclear bombs in a NATO “bomb sharing” arrangement. The B61 is intended for delivery by high speed aircraft (like an F-35 or B-2 bomber) and has an intermediate yield. NATO has been deploying it in countries like Turkey since 2005. So yeah,
I guess Cold War 2.0 really doesn’t exist (not). If I were Russia, I’d rate the NATO/U.S. nuke deployment in Turkey as very similar to what they were attempting in Cuba during the missile crisis. The B61 is housed at Incirlik Air Base in SW Turkey, and basically is a bit of muscle used to project U.S hegemony in he region. Incirlik is about 400 miles from the Russian base at Sevastopol on the Crimean peninsula. Take about 15 minutes to dump a couple nukes on it after a mach 2 run at a 50 ft radar evading altitude.
I wonder just how well the nukes at Incirlik are protected agains a military coup, or nationalization by Erdogan as he consolidates his dictator role if the coup completely fizzles? No doubt he will continue to purge the military of any elements that are a threat to him if he survives. Well, there’s this story from RT:
Anybody bothered by this sort of news, or lack of any real media attention? Yawn, just another day at the nuke storage facility.
Moon of Alabama has an excellent followup on the attempted (or false flag) coup in Turkey. Now that many details are sifting out, it most likely appears that Erdogan was complicit in the whole affair:
Yep, I guess this is how a “moderate” democracy in the middle east operates, eh Pete?
Still disturbing to me is the role of NATO and the U.S. in the harboring of nearly a hundred tactical nukes at Incirlik Air Base. If, as it appears, Erdogan is well on his way to becoming a Sultan, is it not dangerous to put such weapons in the easy grasp of one who wants to rebuild the Ottoman Empire? The U.S. and NATO are playing with fire in their eastward push to keep Russia from building a multipolar world.
What’s your issue here, JC? That I called Erdogan a “moderate” in terms of past and present Middle Eastern despots? I would much rather have a more secular, progressive leader but he was elected in 2014 by 13 points over his nearest rival. Can that be said about Syria’s Assad or Bahrain’s King Hammad or the House of Saud? And you’re putting words in my mouth when you imply that I believe coups are a part of Middle Eastern “‘moderate’ democracy.”
I’m not ruling out a possible “false flag” coup but I’m going to need more than a Moon of Alabama post to convince me and that’s the only source, besides Erdogan’s arch-enemy Fethullah Gulen, that I can find claiming a “stage-managed coup.”
I’ve seen more sources saying that the West was behind the coup. From Al Jazeera:
“Every terrorism incident and this coup attempt can be traced and linked to international power centres,” Aziz Babuscu, an AKP parliamentarian from Istanbul, told Al Jazeera. “There is no need to name the international power centres … This is not the first time Turkey has been targeted by these centres in recent years.”
I’m not buying into that, yet, either, but who knows? It’s a little early to lay blame, wouldn’t you say?
Touchy, touchy. I said “appears.” Appearances can be deceiving. Much more will become know in the days ahead — or at least more will be asserted. In any case, I still have issue with our nukes being on Turkish soil. Does that bother you? Sure bothers me.
Doesn’t matter who’s to blame for recent events in Turkey. It wouldn’t take much for Erdogan, or whomever may rise to power in a successful coup, to decide that Turkey with the bomb is a more formidable foe than any other country in the middle east.
As to whether or not Erdogan is “moderate”, well that’s another story. Is it really valuable to rate him compared to other regional dictators? He has usurped the power of the Prime Minster — does that disqualify him as moderate? He is purging the country of all opposition — does that qualify him as a moderate? Do we really need to diminish the sanctity of democracy to a pittance in order to label a Sultan-wannabe as “moderate?”
And yeah, the west may have been involved in the coup attempt. Vicki Nuland was in Cyprus the day before it started. That should raise a red flag. The whole Gulen thing could be nothing more than a ruse to cover up who really was involved. Maybe Putin assisted Erdogan to instigate a false flag. Maybe Obama was trying to bring Turkey back into the NATO/U.S. fold after Erdogan apologized to Putin for shooting down a Russian plane and killing a pilot — nothing like helping an ally orchestrate a false flag. Wouldn’t be the first time we’ve done so, and assuredly won’t be the last.
And to match up Erdogan against Assad, well, Assad was democratically elected too. Do you really want to assert that Erdogan is more moderate than Assad? Good luck with that one. You’ll have to defend Erdogan’s funding and providing safe haven for ISIS, and all of the BS that goes with that.
QOTD: “There can be but little doubt that Turkey will be in upheaval for some time, no matter how things shake out in Ankara. There is even less doubt that ISIS and al-Qaeda are putting out an all-points bulletin to jihadis to converge on Turkey to exploit the situation there. This is but the first detonation, following on Nice. More alas is likely to come.
The last 48 hours have blown the hinges off NATO’s southern door. The European Union was relying on Turkey to stand between it and the chaos of Syria. Now the wall is threatening to collapse on Frau Merkel. The chaos she sought to keep at bay may have moved one country closer to the heart of Europa, a Europa which the French security failure suggests is defenseless against the fire which it, itself, has started within its borders.” –Richard Fernandez
Quote yourself correctly, JC. You said it “mostly likely appears” that Erdogan was complicit.
Assad’s election was a farce, since it’s tough for opposition voters to make it to the polls while their cities are being bombed by the government during a civil war. So, Assad is as moderate as Ergodan? “Good luck with that one.” When Erdogan starts torturing, murdering and bombing his citizens, and is charged with war crimes, I might agree with you.
Of course it bothers me that there are nukes in Turkey, or anywhere for that matter. I’m not sure why you’re getting your ire up on this one. My initial comment was basically that the coup was bad news. I spent time in Turkey, have friends in Ankara, and I worry about a country I am fond of and plays a crucial role in Middle East stability.
“Touchy, Touchy,” yourself.
Yep, a real moderate in a legitimate democracy:
I have concerns about the coup’s aftermath, too. We’ll see how it shakes out. There are still a lot of pro-democracy secularists in Turkey. I want to see their reaction to Erdogan’s consolidation of power, and the reaction of other nations to the power grab.
Good read at ConsortiumNews today on the issue of NATO’s nuclear weapons in Turkey:
Turkey has a history of advancing secularism, dating back to Ataturk in the 1920s. I have hopes that this will continue. I agree that having nukes in a country going through these throes is disconcerting (but then nukes anywhere are disconcerting).
One has to ask, though, just who are the “Islamists?” Erdogan and his crew or the “Gulens?” Your quote refers to the “mutinous troops (that) used a tanker plane from the base to refuel F-16s … ” Which would lead one to believe that this was more than a stage-managed coup. So, who in Turkey is the bad guy these days?
I know you have little faith in the mainstream media, JC, but I don’t think they’d ignore an issue with these ramifications, so I await further reports from other sources.
It could be a barber shop anywhere in the world — men talking about the good old days, that probably weren’t really that good — but afraid of change and clinging to tradition. It’s an insightful, well-written article that examines a neighborhood in Istanbul:
Thanks for the link Pete. I’ll read it get I get a few…
Funny how democracy works…
Today in “As Turkey Turns…”
Nice moderate democracy, ruling by decree and all…
As Turkey turns:
As the authoritarian seals his iron grip on the country, we get the hillary and don show…
Democracy in action, Erdogan style: