by John Galt
July 17, 2016 15:50 ET
The story from the Western media is totally inconsistent with the pro-Government Turkish and Middle Eastern propaganda outlets as the period some thirty-six hours after the coup comes into clear view. The headline on the Drudge Report earlier today summed it up quite nicely:
The story it the Drudge Report linked to was from the U.K. Daily Mail:
Crocodile tears? Turkish president Erdoğan breaks down in tears at coup victim’s funeral as he calls his opponents a ‘virus’ who must be purged
The most important takeaways from this story are:
- Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has rounded up almost 6,000 troops, judges and prosecutors following Friday night’s coup
- The president addressed supporters following his dramatic return to Istanbul where he announced the clampdown
- He urged his fans to remain on the streets and occupy public spaces to prevent any retaliation by the military
- Erdogan warned his supporters that those behind the coup ‘would pay a heavy price’ for their treachery
Why is this important? It does not take long to realize that in the past few weeks, major setbacks have been dealt to the GCC and Saudi led efforts in Iraq and Syria. The rebel forces the Kingdoms support are being squeezed out of their positions in both countries while Iranian soldiers obtain valuable combat experience. Syria’s dictator, Bashir Assad is actually getting a sympathetic hearing from parts of the so-called non-aligned world where while working with the Russians the propaganda coup has turned negative European and public opinion against Turkey and the Arab States for their perceived (more like actual) support of ISIS and other terrorist groups in the region. Then to add insult to injury, Turkey’s political parties and business leadership successfully pressured Erdoğan to resolve the dispute with Russia and attempt to settle the differences with the Syrian government to resume the existing tense state of detente instead actively working to overthrow Assad.
Unfortunately for the world, Erdoğan’s actions not only antagonized the Wahhabi supporters within Turkey, it antagonized the powers who have been sponsoring the destruction of the Iraqi and Syrian nations so a pro-Saudi regime could be put in place for a pipeline to built through Turkey and into Europe from the Arabian Peninsula. Thus there is cause for the Saudis and other interested parties to support a coup attempt then again, Erdoğan may indeed have needed outside help to initiate the faux coup for his own purposes in order to consolidate power in the country and remove any threat of a military or civilian uprising against any actions he intends to take next.
The purges within the Turkish judiciary should not come as a shock to the world. Just three weeks ago, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) submitted a bill to the Turkish parliament which would have created sweeping reforms to the judicial system as highlighted in this article via the ALMonitor:
The bill envisages the removal of all members of the Supreme Court of Appeals and the Council of State, the top administrative court, except for their presidents, chief prosecutors and department chiefs. The changes would affect about 700 judges. The Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors (HSYK) would then make new appointments from scratch. Most of the incumbent judges — particularly those seen as troublesome, according to critics — are bound to clean out their desks as the bill cuts down available positions to 416 and then gradually to less than 300.
The unprecedented bill, which came only days after a nationwide reshuffle of thou of judges and prosecutors, is justified with the upcoming introduction of regional appeals courts, which will purportedly take a significant workload off the two courts and make much of their staff redundant, and with efforts to weed out members close to the Gulen movement, which was last month officially designated as a terrorist group.
Both arguments, however, are unconvincing. In December 2014, the government added 144 new members to the Supreme Court of Appeals and 33 more to the Council of State, ignoring criticism of bloating the courts. And in 2010, when it spearheaded constitutional amendments overhauling the judiciary, it had dismissed concerns that the changes would play into the hands of judges and prosecutors close to the Gulen community.
Another alarming provision in the draft extends the shake-up to the Higher Electoral Board, which is responsible for election security and decides objections during elections. The board’s 11 members would be similarly removed from office, with the new appointments up to the new members of the Supreme Court of Appeals and the Council of State.
Now with the attempted coup, all of these reforms plus more are being applied via the barrel of a gun. The AKP has arrested thousands of judiciary officials and judges and it would appear that the Electoral Board is part of the clean sweep to eradicate any opposition to Erdoğan. Convenient timing, eh?
Thus even if any civilian or military authority might wish to present evidence of coordination with Saudi promoters of terrorist groups like ISIS with the AKP and Erdoğan, there will be no prosecutors or judges within the system to push this prosecution forward. Why is this important?
Let us reflect on Erdoğan’s son, Bilal, from this blog posting in December of 2015:
The first crackdown on Erdoğan’s opposition began in January of 2016 as well as a hardening of his stance towards Syria and increased aid and support for anti-Assad rebels in northern Syria and ordering the Turkish military to occupy bases in northern Iraq under the presumption of preventing Kurdish terrorists from attacking Turkey from Northern Iraq; even though some of the bases they created and occupied did nothing but impede progress against ISIS to the West and Southwest of strong Pershmega positions inside the Kurdish region in Iraq. After the attempted coup on Friday, there are unconfirmed reports that the Turkish military is leaving their positions in Northern Iraq and returning to their bases in southern Turkey.
If indeed Turkey is returning to its prior state of support for ISIS and other radical Sunni Islamist groups in northern Iraq and Syria, then the purge of the Turkish military makes perfect sense if one is to assume that Turkey wishes to return to a status quo with strong financial report from Riyadh and other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) capitols. However, the idea that this is political and financial is not even close to the end story; President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan not only sees himself as a great unifying new style Islamist power in Turkey but has visions of becoming a greater leader in the Muslim world by helping to or seizing control of a greater caliphate in the region.
Unfortunately for Erdoğan, the Wahhabi Saudi clerics view his authority with a jaundiced eye claiming he is not a true supporter or capable of leading any caliphate until he adopts Sharia law and enforces Islamic morals to remove the perversion and corruption within his nation. The steps he started to take yesterday appear to have some degree of validity to accusations that Erdoğan plans to change their opinion and start initiating Sharia Law throughout Turkey in the months ahead.
The fear that Erdoğan has these visions of grandeur are not unfounded. He abandoned his friendship with Turkish cleric Fethullah Gülen in pursuit of greater power within the AKP and over Turkish political affairs. Gülen has also come out recently accusing Erdoğan of staging the coup to consolidate power not just within the political and military realm, but to ensure that all of the religious authorities back his actions and authority inside of Turkey and support him throughout the Islamic world. This final point is of a critical nature because of the Wahhabi opposition to Erdoğan, despite accusations within his own nation by members of the Nationalist Movement Party(MHP_ that he has Salafi tendencies. If indeed Sharia Law becomes a greater part of the Turkish legal system, then arresting members withing the judicial system and Electoral Board is 100% logical. Interestingly enough, this also benefits foreign observers in the Arabian Peninsula who wish to establish a greater Islamist power within the Middle East to block both Shiite influence from Iran and Western influence from Europe and the U.S.A.
Interestingly enough, two of the powers who seem to be drifting away from the Western/U.S. influence sphere within the Middle East, Qatar and Saudi Arabia were quick to praise Erdoğan after the coup was quashed:
From the Gulf Times, Qatar:
Qatar yesterday condemned an attempted military coup in Turkey.
HH the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani telephoned Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to express support for measures taken by the government to maintain stability in the country.
A group of Turkish troops claimed on Friday they had seized power in the country but by yesterday morning loyalist forces had crushed the bid after crowds took to the streets to support President Erdogan.
“The State of Qatar expressed its strong denunciation and condemnation of the military coup attempt, lawlessness, and violation of the constitutional legitimacy in the Republic of Turkey,” Qatar’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
The statement stressed “Qatar’s solidarity with the fraternal Republic of Turkey in all the legal measures the legitimate Turkish government takes to maintain the security and stability of Turkey and its fraternal people”.
The statement also called for “the need to preserve the constitutional legitimacy, respect for the will of the Turkish people, reject violence, and not to take any step that would undermine security and stability in the fraternal Republic of Turkey”.
In his phone call to President Erdoğan, HH the Emir congratulated him on the support of the brotherly Turkish people to their leadership against the failed military coup attempt.
The Emir expressed his “extreme condemnation and denouncement for this failed attempt and renewed the support of Qatar, its leadership and people and its solidarity with the brotherly Republic of Turkey in all actions taken to protect the constitutional legitimacy, law implementation, maintain security and stability and protect its people’s gains”.
And from the Arab News, Saudi Arabia:
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said Saudi Arabia “welcomes the restoration of peace and security in Turkey and the return of the legitimately elected government of President Erdogan.
“We are confident that the Turkish government is capable of bringing the situations back to normal and ensure stability.”
What was missing from these statements? A very strong rumor that on Friday night the Emir of Qatar had apparently offered some of his best troops to help Erdoğan suppress the coup. Why would Qatar, which has long been accused of funding radical Islamic groups like Al Qaeda and ISIS, wish to intervene in a Turkish internal affair unless it is to guarantee support for their rebels in Iraq and Syria and the ideal of a greater Islamic caliphate. It is unknown at this time if Saudi Arabia had offered Erdoğan any assistance but it is safe to assume that if Qatar did, other Gulf nations were going to also.
Putting the puzzle together may indeed take weeks or months but from this observer’s perspective and opinion, if this verified as another Erdoğan maneuver to consolidate power and purge the nation of all opposition plus Western influence, then the idea that the Saudis were or are helping the Islamist idealists within the Erdoğan government is not that far fetched. In fact I would not be shocked to find out that multiple Arab governments or wealthy interest made strong commitments to Erdoğan and his political allies that once the coup began, they would ensure that it did not spread and the financial backing would guarantee that the results supporting a severe crackdown, even if the European Union and U.S. initiated an economic backlash which would not financially cripple the Turkish economy thanks to Arab support.
If Erdoğan does indeed use his new position to bring back the death penalty, do not be shocked should the West act in revulsion to what might amount to over 10,000 executions of what will be called enemies of the state. The Saudis and GCC supporters will protect the Turkish people from a Western backlash and do all they can within their powers to use Turkey as a counterbalance to Iran and Europe while attempting to resurrect their rebel militias which are flailing in Iraq and Syria. The crisis in Turkey is far from over and there are large religious, financial, and political interests in the Arabian Peninsula which will do everything in their power to help Erdoğan succeed.