Turkey is enduring another coup d’etat, one of many in the history of what is today called Turkey. Frequent commentator and mil-blogger URR has an excellent post on the recent activities in Turkey. The history and culture of Turkey is rich and very worthy of study, and if one were to sum up thousands of years into a single word that word would be ‚tension.‘
Turkey is a study in tension. Religions, cultures, politics, and economics are parts and parcel of Turkish life with none being dominant for very long. Islam certainly isn’t dominant: the Pillars of Islam are not enforced with the fanaticism one sees in Riyadh, capital of the world’s #1 terrorist state. Christians and Jews and atheists live in Turkey. That is because of Turkey’s history: literally the crossroads of four continents, with cities like Gobekli Tepe, and what is now Istanbul thousands of years older than the oldest cities in Europe or Asia. Empires do not live very long by massacring everyone inside of it, but by assimilating peoples and religions in a melting pot. Turkey’s focus of assimilation differed from the rest of Islam by its assumption of the role of ruling created by Rome and enlarged by Byzantium.
The Seljuk Turks conquered Byzantium and continued their march into the West, only to be stopped by Europeans coming from Poland to Albania and Greece, from Portugal to Armenia over a period of several centuries. But that westward focus, that rejection of Sunni and Shia caliphs of Iraq and Iran and of the many Muslim empires ranging from India to the African shores of the Atlantic, shaped Turkey.
In the first world war, Turkey, then call the Ottoman Empire, allied itself with its historical enemies, the Austro-Hungarian and German empires against the British, French and Russian Empires. That world war was the death of empires as such. The Ottoman Emperor made these alliances because he wanted access to western markets to give his empire strength. The Ottoman Emperor chose poorly, and his empire died on American bayonets and his people starved. Following the death of the Ottoman Empire in 1922, Kemal Ataturk and his successors maintained that western focus and sought access to economy through friendship with the US of A.
In return, the West maintained a centuries-old habit of pissing on the Turks. Turkey was a member of NATO, with the mission to control the Bosporus and eastern Med, and give the Soviets and Warsaw Pact something to worry about on their southern flank. Turkey was not invited to join the European Union. In essence, the effete rulers of Europe treated Turkey as a laird treats his servant, all the dirty work and maybe sleeping quarters out of the rain in the hayloft.
This decades-long disrespect of Turkey created Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He is in many ways the anti-history, the anti-west leader whom the Turks expect to bring prestige, security and access to the economy of Europe. Erdogan in turn wants to be Emperor. Not a caliph or a sultan or anything so eastern as that. A western Emperor.
To accomplish that feat in Turkey one has to do four things: get rid of democracy, undermine its institutions, re-educate the people, and take revenge on Europe.
Get rid of democracy as a check to unlimited power. Like the Progressive regimes of Russia, Venezuela, Iran and China, ‚democracy‘ is a humiliation imposed on those peoples by „enlightened“ elites – each vote counts if it is for the correct candidate, or else. And so each citizen legitimizes the illegitimate for that next scrap of bread and the escapism of drugs and mindless daytime TV.
Erdogan almost got away with an electoral coup in the last elections, after having changed the election process from a republican form (the legislators elect the leader, similar to our Electoral College) to a direct election, but the Kurds and several smaller groups of Turks as well as European intransigence prevented that. To say Erdogan took that defeat with a graceless anger is an understatement. But Erdogan has a script written over thousands of years to follow, and elections are new to the stage of history.
Erdogan has enjoyed a spectacular success in ridding the Turkish military of officers of all ranks who are westward-focused, trained, and dedicated to Turkey instead of a cult of personality. Our own Iwon is second only to Erdogan in conducting a similar purge of the military since his inauguration in 2009. In undermining these institutions of the military, education and science the people seek security in something solid, safe, and which gives them pride. Like still loving the Patriots in the face of some very inconvenient facts like the Fumble statistics, Turks turn to Erdogan who pleases them by giving the west and east a big middle finger and winning the big fights.
Having a military officer corps that slavishly devoted to Erdogan, or in extreme fear of that leader’s private army, which is similar to “Occupy Ankara” and Erdogan has the coercive power to stay in power. The current purge of officers exceeds the number of actual participants in the coup, but that is a feature, not a bug in this theater.
Having citizens who are functionally ignorant of Turkey’s rich and complex history yields the holistic, ironic ignorance of a Progressive political rally, or the graduating class of any Ivy League university. In exchange for wormy bread and savage circuses, the masses will support anyone.
Having science, especially archaeology which shows the Turks picked a damn good spot in which to live, with a heritage real and imagined that stretches back beyond history, and rivaling Jerusalem in antiquity. This pride salves the arrows and insults from European and Muslim alike.
Erdogan’s masterful destruction of the European Union, care of Syria and Russia, is the next to last piece. Europe wouldn’t let Turkey into the wealth, so Erdogan shipped hundreds of thousands of Muslims, and thousands of Muslim terrorists into Europe gratis. Europe as we have historically known it will never recover. Angela Merkel thought she was creating a 4th Reich, but she failed to understand Erdogan was creating a new Ottoman Empire.
Erdogan even has a handy pack of wolves scratching at the door to bind all of Turkey’s citizens to him: Muslim, Christian and Jew alike. The Russians proximity and aggressiveness are known to the Turks and the West’s effete snobbery gives Erdogan the twin threats of Other and Going It Alone to bind the masses to him. ISIS and Syria are other wolves who are dangerous, but not existentially dangerous, to distract Turks. The Europeans are the beta-wolves, ready to lick everyone else’s hindquarters so as to show how morally superior Europe is as Beta-central.
All Erdogan needs is an excuse and he will be emperor Recep I.
URR and others are calling this a ‚Reichstag‘ moment – a crime of outrage that will be capitalized upon in the service of evil and the promotion of a specific political leader. The effect was the Progressives, then calling themselves Nationalist-Socialists, enjoyed the swelling of anger to seize power and get rid of the societal mosquitoes biting the German people: crushing debt from the world, trade unions from the Communists, and the having to make nice with the undesirables of Germany: the anti-abortionists, the anti-euthanasiasts, the Romany, gays, and orthodox Christians. Whomever supported the Nationalist-Socialist elites got to see a change in the power dynamic as the wealth was shared andthe hated industrialists were made to serve the people. That didn’t end well but for Turkey there are the European Union, Saudi adventurism in the form of terrorism, the Kurds, the Armenians, the Syrians, the Greeks, and the secularists to be forced to kneel before the Turks.
I expect to see three things happen that will prove this coup to have been a false flag operation: the elimination of the opposition to Erdogan’s personal power, which we may already be seeing; a separate peace with Putin which functionally takes Turkey out of NATO; and a further promotion of anti-EU, anti-Israel and anti-Saud programs with the aim of securing a strong economic base for a new Turkish empire.
Could a coup like this happen in America? Isn’t it already happening? Funny thing about history: the shadow puppets and their scripts are thousands of years old, but we believe we created them yesterday.