July 18, 2016

IT SURE LOOKS THAT WAY: Was Turkey’s coup attempt just an elaborate hoax by Erdogan?

Why did the coup attempt begin with blocking one side of Istanbul’s Bosporus Bridge? Why was the passage from the Asian side to Europe blocked while the passage from Europe to Asia was allowed to flow?

Why did the putschists — knowing that Erdogan was neither in Ankara nor Istanbul but instead spending his vacation in the Mediterranean seaside town of Marmaris — not move to detain him? They let him travel from Marmaris to the nearby Dalaman airport and then fly to Istanbul on a flight that took over an hour.

Why did the putschists not seize the main TV news channels and instead waste precious time taking over the least-watched state TV channel, TRT, allowing their targets to regroup and use more popular channels and social media effectively to challenge the coup attempt?

Prime Minister Binali Yildirim spoke first on the NTV channel, alleging that it was not a coup but a rebellion perpetrated by a small faction in the military. Erdogan then spoke through CNN-Turk via FaceTime and called on his supporters to take to the streets.

Seemingly a headless and disoriented coup attempt crumbled after a few hours, leaving 265 dead, some 1,440 wounded and at least 2,839 military personnel in custody.

And then this from John Schindler in response to CNN’s report that “8,777 officers from the Turkish Ministry of Interior” had been removed over the weekend:

It wasn’t a failed coup; it’s a successful purge.

Events of the past couple of years have me paranoid enough to wonder if we shouldn’t be looking for Vladimir Putin’s fingerprints.

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