Turkey: a year after the coup


The summer of 2016 was a real shock to the power of Erdogan.  On the evening of July 15, the accomplices of FethullahGülen tried to seizefiercely  power in the country. Then the rebels blocked the transport system, seized the media and shot at people.

It was not a national, but a military riot, provoked by forces from abroad: military equipment was taken out to the streets, the rebels attacked the parliament building and Erdogan's residence.

However, tough measures were taken in time and the attempted coup failed. The Turkish president addressed people through an online broadcast and called on them to go out.  The military, who remained loyal to the president,  decided to defend their leader until the end. There were losses, of course: 249 people were killed, more than 2 thousand were injured.

As it is known, the Muslim preacher,  FethullahGülen, who currently resides in Pennsylvania, USA, organized the coup attempt.

The insurgency was followed by mass purges in the army and government. It was  a necessary measure to clear the power of dangerous elements.

It is important that the situation did not end up only by purging thegovernment. Erdogan organized a national referendum, according to which on April 16, 2017, 51% of the population of Turkey voted to expand the powers of the president. Most of the amendments to the Constitution adopted at the referendum will come into force only in November 2019 after the elections, but the trend is obvious: Erdogan managed to strengthen his positions.

However, some legal amendments are used: first, the president can be a member of a political party now; secondly, he has the right to appoint members of a special council approving the positions of judicial officers.

There were many provocations, among them the blasphemous murder of Russian Ambassador Andrei Karlov at the opening of the photo exhibition "Russia through the eyes of the Turks" on December 19 in Ankara.

There were a series of attempts to destabilize the situation - more than eight acts of terrorism only in 2016, including attacks on Gaziantep, Istanbul and Ankara. On December 11, a car with explosives exploded next to the home stadium of the football team "Besiktas". Earlier, a Russian plane was shot down and our pilot Oleg Peshkov was killed. Responsibility was assumed by ISIS (the organization is banned in Russia), radicals from the group "Hawks of freedom of Kurdistan". But, as we understand, there are also quite specific people behind the general destabilization who want to overthrow Erdogan.

The coup attempt was pro-American. It was not only against Turkey and the whole region, it was against Russia and Syria, against Iran and other countries, and this attempt was suppressed thanks to the cooperation of the army and the people.

However, the officers who participated in the coup were a small part of the army - the majority opposed the coup. After the failure of the putsch and personnel cleansing, Turkey largely got rid of the Atlantic forces - in the army, in the state apparatus and in society.

On the other hand, thanks to this purge, the Turkish army found an opportunity to conduct the operation in Syria - it was planned in coordination with Russia. Russia and Turkey had many common tasks, one of which was the preservation of the territorial integrity of Syria.  The US was very angry with Turkey, because of this operation, because the operation "Euphrates Shield" is against fundamentalists and separatists in Syria, and the Turkish army refused to cooperate  with the American forces, preferring to cooperate with Russia in Syria.

We can say that the coup had its benefits: Turkey realized that it cannot live in the Atlantic camp. It can live if it can preserve its territorial integrity, develop its economy and preserve security, and Turkey must take its place in Eurasia - with Russia, with China, with Iran and other Eurasian states.

Now, Gulen does not have enough strength to organize a new coup. But, of course, he has the means to undertake the next provocations, as it was done with the  murder of Karlov.

They cannot make a coup, but they can prepare provocations. This does not mean that the danger of the coup is gone, of course, Washington has its own people, most of them expelled from the army, but Washington will try to force the Turkish army to make a coup. There are no more forces capable of doing this in the army and the state.