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A view of Turkey July 19, 2016

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

Most enlightening piece here on Turkey (written before the coup spluttered to a halt), the role of the Army and the distinctions between ‘secularism’ and what the army represents and indeed the situation in regard to a conservative society. Sometimes I think Turkey seems to have features not unknown on this island. Other times not.

One fascinating point is that EU accession talks may have been in part to push the army back in its box. Another is the following:

We talked in our last conversation about Erdogan as less of a hardcore Islamist than a typical Turkish strongman, which is interesting in light of what’s now happening.
Right. The army said, essentially, that they were taking over because the government had created an autocracy. I don’t think they mentioned Islam. They mentioned the legal system. Last week, Erdogan attacked the last two independent courts. In previous coups the army took over because they thought institutions were not working properly or being populated with Islamists. But the institutions were still there. This time, the institutions themselves have been destroyed.

For those dubious about the coup from the off this won’t generate any greater certainty that all was as it seemed:

Rebel soldiers arrived at the president’s holiday residence in Bodrum a full two hours after he left. Not one government ministry was overrun by dissenting forces and reports have emerged that troops sent to block the Bosphorus bridge in Istanbul believed they were on a drill. There was no figure on hand to address the country to explain why and how a military intervention was necessary.


1. lamentreat - July 19, 2016

Yes, that’s interesting about the E.U.

Seeing the E.U. negotiating with Turkey, hard not to have the impression that they are a bunch of amateurs being carefully led around the houses by the Turks.

No matter what the E.U. might say in public, there is very very little chance of Turkey being admitted in any imaginable medium-term future. Surely the Turkish government knows that, so any negotiations with the E.U. about “accession” are likely to be about pursuing other agendas.

Another thought-provoking piece, maybe:
Escobar talks shite sometimes, and these days often spouts a Putin line, but if read with a couple of pinches of salt, he can have interesting angles.


WorldbyStorm - July 19, 2016

You put your finger on it. There’s no way Turkey isn’t in it for its own benefit (as indeed are the EU).

Cheers for the link.


2. 1729torus - July 20, 2016

In Ireland, from 1916 to 1937, the rural regions and the urban poor, seized power from the cosmopolitan elites that were sitting on top of the population and mocking them. They then set up a democracy to ensure the popular will was represented, albeit an authoritarian and conservative one.

In Turkey the exact opposite happened. Ataturk deliberately went out of his way to suppress the religion and “rural attitudes” that had weakened the Ottomon Empire to the point of ruin. The actions of the Istanbul elite alienated a large portion of the population including “rural Turkey” in Anatolia which was underdeveloped at this time.

Now in Ireland, the relative weight of Dublin has grown in the past 30 years, as manifested in increasing challenges to the Church culminating in the gay marriage referendum. But you now have the D4 crowd engaging in nonsense like attempting to make fun of 1916 or claiming that Ireland circa 1914 was a democracy.

Conversely, in Turkey, Anatolia has become much richer in the past few decades, to the point where Ankara can hold its own against Istanbul. Thus the security apparatus secular elite set up had been undermined over time by infiltration by liberal Islamists. The AKP is basically a Turkish version of FF – a right-wing conservative populist party that represents the urban working class and the poor.

Plenty of holes in this analogy, but it provides a good starting point to frame a discussion.


3. Roger Cole - July 20, 2016

Then FF supported Irish Neutrality and the League of Nations in those days. The AKP supports ISIS and the rebuilding of the Ottoman Empire. Now FF supports the European Empire and its links with NATO, so the have more in common now than they did in 1937


4. EWI - July 20, 2016

The stuff about soldiers being told this was a drill is no proof at all. What are you going to do, tell every Johnnyy Rifleman that there’s a coup about to happen?


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