Mass Resignation of Turkish Generals

The Kemalists have staged coups before but Turkey has never been in danger of becoming an Islamist state a la Iran or Saudi Arabia.

And yes, that sounds both extremely paranoid and doesn’t inspire much confidence in your understanding of the nuances of region.

Considering that Turkey has been a Democracy much longer than most of Eastern Europe that’s a remarkably foolish statement as well as a statement that displays considerable bigotry.

Admitting to having a bigoted point-of-view and using a euphemism for bigotry doesn’t make it less bigoted.

I’m sure no one on this site except for a few of the closet anti-Semites wouldn’t hesitate to call me an anti-semite if I said “Jews can’t be trusted and I’m using my personal ethnocentric viewpoint as a judgement on that.”

I’m sorry but such a comment shows fairly dramatic ignorance of the region. Turkey has been a close and loyal ally of the US for a long time. One could make a strong argument that they’ve been more loyal than Israel despite not receiving nearly the kind of support and putting up with humiliations that Israel would never have.

Lebanon is also a democracy and it has also been an ally of the US for a long time.

Jordan has also been a staunch ally. Granted Jordan isn’t a full Democracy, but it does have a popularly elected government.

I know it’s common for ignorant Islamophobes to insist that Muslims can’t be trusted to govern themselves and need strongmen to keep them in line but that’s merely bigoted bullshit.

It’s a proxy for a different argument though. Most of these states wouldn’t play ball with the U.S. if they were governed by popular opinion. We gotta find some way to put them in our back pocket.

You mean like the popularly elected governments of Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq, and partly popularly elected government of Jordan?

Prejudices tend to collapse when you scratch below the surface and that’s true with this one as well.

No, don’t just say your views are based in ethnocentrism. Don’t just hide behind bigotry and call it quits. Be sure to make it clear that your view is also based on fantasies about the nature of the 4 coups you gave the dates for. The facts of them do not support your assertions. As with all opinions based in bigotry and ignorance your view of the facts are also fantasies.

I hope the whole of the Middle East becomes one democracy after another and I hope that when it does you constantly stain your underwear.

More importantly, when you personally recognize that your opinions are prejudiced, then how can you trust that your opinion is worth anything. Isn’t it obvious to you that you would never let facts get in the way of your opinion?

Of course not. You don’t wait until the state becomes Islamic to act, you do so before it. By their standards, the military has prevented an Islamic state from forming multiple times and they have remained popular despite that. I see no reason to change that

Its only foolish if you fail to consider the religious factor. Eastern Europeans, despite being Christian, do not go around establishing theocracies in the same degree and number that Muslims do. Don’t talk to me about bigotry until some of the countries there dare to side with Israel over the Palestinians

Of course, that’d be stupid and bigoted because it would be wrong. Jews have shown that they can be trusted with democracy. Its a bit messy, and I don’t like everything they’re doing, but I have no problems with them having a democracy. When the same thing was offered to the Palestinians, they elected Hamas. Don’t try to pretend there is an equality here. Sometimes, the facts are on one side. Jews can be trusted with democracy, Muslims generally can’t because they elected nutjobs like Hamas

Turkey threatened to disallow the use of their air space and bases during the Iraq war. They are hardly staunch allies. Their government, the one trying to turn the country Islamic, catered to their insane factions. If the army were in charge they’d have none of that shit. They have also refused to admit their genocide and have serious problems about allowing an independent Kurd homeland across their border. Granted, those are different issues, but they are ones that hardly have American interested at heart. Whatever I think of Israel’s mishandling of the Palestinian issue, they are at least motivated by their own safety and the desire to live in peace. I’m sure if some other country offered to created a Palestinian homeland, they’d be completely for it

No, it has a king. And not a king like the UK has a queen, but an actual king that has the power to get rid of his prime minister. He also suspended Parliament for 2 years and passed over 100 laws. Yes, they are an ally, but they are not ready for democracy either

Not all Muslims. Indonesia seems to be doing fine despite having the highest number of Muslims of any country in the world. Mostly it seems the problem is in the Middle East. There must be some crazy in the water, what little they have of it

Sure, in 20 or 30 years, maybe they will be democracies and they’ll be good ones, ones that doesn’t suspect the US and Israel is teaming up to get rid of them, ones that asserts Israel’s right to exist, and ones that will take care of their own problems like Iran.

You show me a true democracy in the Middle East with Western values and then I’ll admit I was wrong. The fact is, you can’t. Jordan is not a democracy, Turkey doesn’t have our values, and Lebanon’s only with us because we’re the lesser of two evils with Syria on the other side. The closest you can come to is Israel. But hey, maybe they’ll do a recall election in Palestine and kick out Hamas right?

Please explain how Turkey doesn’t have “our values”.

What exactly are the “values” you’re looking for.

What “western values” do they lack?

For one thing, they still have a law, however modified, that makes insults to the Turkish state a crime punishable with up to 2 years in jail.

It also has no conscientious objector alternatives to military service

Worst, its press is not really free at all. It has high sensitivities to defamation which to me makes it seem like a child throwing a tantrum. This kind of specific press restriction is never a good sign, because there is never a good reason for it. It makes the regime seem paranoid and weak, seeing enemies in every shadow. It doesn’t take a lot for such a state to crack down on dissent.

Look at the list of websites its blocked, and for the stupidest reasons. Insults to Ataturk, a complaint by a Muslim against Richard Dawkins, porn sites, general offensiveness. When a state can’t handle that, then it is a step away from shutting down all free media. What happens when there’s internal dissent and the regime comes under fire but no media can report on it?

Plus, there’s that whole genocide thing. The US has done a lot of bad, but we’ve owned up to it. We acknowledge slavery, we know we marched millions of Native Americans do their deaths. Only recently some of our more crazy politicians have even suggested that it wasn’t so bad, and when they do the response is always swift and harsh. Turkey doesn’t think it even did anything wrong. It gets pissed off whenever its mentioned. The whole thing happened a hundred years ago yet they are acting as if the bodies are still buried in their backyards. I would like them to make a law akin to Germany’s regarding the Nazi’s, acknowledge fault, try to make up for it, and make sure anyone who denies it gets arrested

Stop it before it happens! Because I stopped it, it didn’t happen! What’s your evidence it was going Islamic? Answer = my gut! Nothing wrong with that logic!!

Oh thank God everything in the Middle East still centers on Israel. It’s imperative that all actions and desires are first pre-approved through its supporters.

Only staunch allies would get themselves involved in a war based on bullshit! Do you mean staunch allies or good puppies? I’m confused.

But you bring up a good point: Why don’t they only care about Israel and the USA!? Stupid Turks! You’d think they had their own ethnicity and nation or something.

On the Kurds: Kurds do not have a homeland because they can’t carve one out. Most Kurds live in democracies at this point in time. Turkey trades freely with Iraqi Kurdistan and regularly hosts their ambassadors. Your views on Turk attitudes toward Iraqi Kurdistan are false.

Yet the current democratic governments in and around the Middle East do not make these claims.

You realize that in the same post you deplored and then promoted censorship?

Turkish Troops in Korean War
Turkish Troops in Afghanistan
Turkish support in Libya
Turkey is in NATO
Turkey is involved in the development of the Joint Strike Fighter
Turkey supports education for all
Turkey has a good higher education system and leads in other Muslim nations in the sciences by a wide margin
All citizens of Turkey have the right to vote
Turkey has a welfare system
Turkey opposes Arab dictators much faster than we do
Turkey supports peace with its neighbors
Turkey supports Syrian refugees indefinitely
Turkey supports open trade
Turkey supports entrepreneurship
Turkish people find religion important (just like Americans)
Turkey supports a woman’s right to abortion
Turkey has regular elections with stable, readily recognized results
Turkey has many political parties
Turkish youth protest regularly; nobody is shot

You know, some people would argue that “this kind of specific press restriction is never a good sign, because there is never a good reason for it. It makes the regime seem paranoid and weak, seeing enemies in every shadow. It doesn’t take a lot for such a state to crack down on dissent.”

Maybe even some people you know.

This is circular reasoning: so the military, who are responsible for these things that you have listed (yes despite Erdogan’s refusal to acknowledge the Armenian holocaust, by far the strongest force against recognition is the militarist cult of personality surrounding Ataturk), should be allowed to retain control? You would wrest control from the democratically elected AK who have acted as a reforming force against the military for these reasons and give it back to precisely those people who were responsible for these policies in the first place?

I havee to say as someone who’s been to Turkey several times and had family there (well in Turkish-occupied North Cyprus) for many years you really come across as being unaware of the reality there.

Not to mention that many democracies, including Israel which he defends would fail the tests he has set up regarding freedom or speech and freedom of the press.

My personal experience.

The Turks are secular, if the present government tries to alter that then they’ll lose .

The military is held in incredible respect by the average Turk , and unlike many countries when the military have held a coup it has not always been for their own interest, (Happened in Ghana as well but I digress),

The E.C forestalled Turkeys membership because they were worried out being flooded by Turkish labourers, obviously clueless about the flood of east European unskilled labourers.

This has caused a lot of offence in Turkey.

I was held as a prisoner for a while because apparently my papers weren’t in order, this despite being a member of the civil service of a fellow NATO nation .

I’m not complaining, its a funny old world.

To my mind, the concern is which way the army will jump, if the resigned generals stage some sort of coup. Is the mass resignation essentially a last gasp of the old style military exerting authority, or the herald of trouble to come? That’s the issue.

That was answered early on Malthus. To add to it, there is broad national support for reducing the military’s influence and it is being done during stable, economically improving conditions. Also, DSeid makes a good point about further political context. Lastly, there is Ergenekon and the fact that many “deep state” conspirators (whether a real plot or not) are in jail without any military revolt. If the plan of these generals was to stir revolt by resigning, then the collective “who gives a shit” by the public, the politicians and military is the answer that you need.

Your statement leaves out the third possibility: resignation means they admit defeat.

It’s over, you witnessed Turkey’s latest step toward a Western style democracy started by Ataturk in 1923.

I certainly hope this is the case.

I did not think that the mass resignation was in hopes of triggering a revolt by moral persuasion. More like a cutting of ties, preliminary to some sort of military uprising.

Though if no uprising occurs, and the civilian gov’t simply appoints new generals and life goes on - I agree it’s a win for Turkey (and, indeed, everyone). Turkey is by far the most hopeful nation in the region, bar Israel.

I think that you just hijacked your own thread.

To build on what I think FinnAgain is saying: Turkey is more hopeful than Israel, hands down.

You just wait. As the documentary World War Z has shown us, the Levant will be a crucial bastion when the Zombiepocalypse comes.


They shouldn’t have raped Peter O’Toole, though. That shit was wrong.

Why should they?! Why should anybody?!