More than 60.000 people …


More than 50,000 people have been fired or suspended over the attempt to overthrow the government, including police, generals and admirals, teachers, judges and civil servants among others.  The country will need a major restructuring of its security forces, having gutted the leadership of its military, with at least 118 generals and admirals detained, stripping the general-rank command of the Turkish military by a third, according to Turkish state broadcaster TRT.  Authorities have also suspended 8,777 Ministry of Interior personnel, mostly police, as well as 100 Turkish intelligence service personnel.
"Turkey's education ministry has revoked the licenses of 21,000 teachers working in private institutions, an official at the ministry told Reuters on Tuesday, part of an expanding government crackdown following a failed coup attempt.

The announcement came shortly after a report that the High Education Board had ordered the resignation of 1,577 deans at all universities across Turkey."  Reuters


 Does anyone wish to argue that Tayyip Sultan is not attempting to create a totalitarian state?  pl

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135 Responses to More than 60.000 people …

  1. Jamblichus says:

    I suppose the question is what should US policy toward Turkey be?

  2. Jamblichus says:

    The dictatorial nature of this Turkish government is now on full display. But the question is what should be done about it? How can the US shape its policy toward Turkey to benefit US interests and promote regional stability?

  3. Istanbul Guy says:

    The next step will be to go after the private, commercial sector. When that happens you will really see the lira tank. Some of my friends who work in finance said as many as 10% of their clients could be recognized by them, as Gulen sympathizers. These individuals have had a lot of credit extended to them, so if their operations cease their loans will go unpaid and that will create a cascade of bankruptcies and foreclosures. Of course any purge in the business world would encompass more than just those people, with many being reported or thrown in for other reasons. I wouldn’t be surprised if such actions shutter 20% of the going concerns in Turkey.
    Most likely after the “state of emergency” is passed, we will see business interests attacked and the scraps that remain handed out to whatever supporters have an interest in them.
    CHP has called for a rally in Taksim square on Sunday, whether this takes place and what happens after will also be telling. The square, which has nearly always been “unsafe” for opposition groups in the past eight months, has suddenly been safe for an entire week. If the CHP is allowed to have a rally there we all will see how much “democracy” is cherished. Already groups of islamists have gone to public areas to beat up on people who drink alcohol. I’m dreading what will happen on Sunday if the two sides collide.

  4. bth says:

    Also blocking teachers from leaving country as well as firing them.

  5. Jack says:

    It seems clear that the Sultan has wanted absolute power for some time. Since his efforts to bamboozle Turkish voters failed repeatedly, he created the faux coup to become the dictator. He can now rule by decree. Additionally, under the state of emergency his decrees cannot be reviewed by the constitutional court, which will of course be packed with his loyalists. Anyone who wants to get ahead in Turkey will have to toe the Sultan’s line.
    Don’t you think our intelligence knows by now exactly what transpired and is advising Obummer about the dangers of the nukes being forcibly taken? What does it say about decision making in DC when the discussion is about extradition of Gulen and not about the threat to the nukes and US personnel at Incirclik? How come our corporate media are not asking the Administration any questions on these matters?

  6. Jackrabbit says:

    But are ‘Assad must go!’ countries supporting his effort? (… with the view that Turkey is a ‘frontline’ state vs. Iran and Russia?) Was Gulen/CIA behind the coup or just foil/excuse?
    Will Turkey be an Islamist State?
    Some think Turkey is “turning” toward Russia. But maybe the realignment is regional? An alliance of Sunni States?
    Is a Turkey that is unconstrained by ties to US/NATO more dangerous to peace?

  7. SmoothieX12 says:

    Not only there is no need to argue–it is obvious that Turkey is heading towards dictatorship–but the main question is HOW drastic will be re-islamization and if this transition will create conditions for civil war and eventual break up of Turkey.

  8. r whitman says:

    The Gulen organization sponsors the Harmony charter schools here in the US. There are a lot of Turkish teachers here on temporary visas. Is this an attempt to get back at the Gulen organization. Does anyone know if they sponsor schools in Turkey and other countries?

  9. Matthew says:

    Col: Kerry muttered something about expelling Turkey from NATO if the purges continue. Can our politicians actually let a country go? We have a number of troublesome, one-sided “alliances” that need review.
    I am curious about a Turkish perspective on the costs and benefits of NATO membership to Turkey. IZ, some thoughts, please.
    Does Erdogan fear and loathe the secularists more than the Russians and the Iranians?

  10. Joe100 says:

    Can’t argue with this assertion!
    What is interesting is the extent of the purge across all relevant institutions that must have been planned in great detail – who are the targets, how will they be “rounded up” or otherwise handled with (jobs terminated), etc.
    This plan must have been “on then shelf” and ready to be deployed when appropriate.
    This transition would seem to radically shift Turkey’s global situation – hard to see how this won’t further damage Turkey’s economy. So Erdogan gains totalitarian power, but the price is severe economic decline and isolation??
    Where does this end and what are the broader regional implications?

  11. jld says:

    Nah! It will be called a democrature.

  12. PeteM says:

    There is an interesting analysis of what is actually happening in Turkey written by Omar Kassem at Counterpunch and it refutes much of the propaganda we are fed about that country and where it is headed. It’s too easy for us westerners to sit back and use our often uninformed biases when passing judgment on the ‘Other’ especially because this other was securely captured by western secularism for so long.
    I don’t think you can describe firing government officials for either belonging to a cult, supporting a coup or failing in their duty to protect the government, totalitarian. The teachers being removed looks suspect at first glance but these are private schools where the Gulanists indoctrinate young people just as in the charter schools Gulan runs in the US.
    The latest Erdogan assault on Turkish freedom, according to our propagandists, is the state of emergency now in legal effect. The Turkish government declares this defensive and necessary precaution after a cult inspired and bloody coup attempt and the western handwringing begins while the French have been under similar restrictions for over a year because of a relatively small number of attacks and no one seems to be concerned about their actions.

  13. tim s says:

    Can anyone argue that a leader with that much power doesn’t already have one?

  14. The Beaver says:

    Turkey to temporarily suspend European Convention on Human Rights after coup attempt
    Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş has said, “while vowing that fundamental rights and freedoms will not be affected during this period.”
    Yep, Students in foreign universities are asked to return to the country, citizens can’t take vacations outside Turkey and other little demands from teh govt.

  15. RHT447 says:

    Timing is everything. Perhaps now partly because the BHO administration is going away and the window will close?

  16. Bill Herschel says:

    Slightly off topic. This is an “interview” between NYTimes reporters and Donald Trump. It is nearly impossible to read it without deciding to vote Trump. If only he had not selected Pence. I suggest reading this in its entirety.

  17. turcopolier says:

    Don’t be obtuse. France is the modern mother of democracy and Western liberal government. Unless LePin is elected, nobody, not even you, would argue that it is headed towards totalitarianism. Unless you are devoted multi-culti, surely you must see that he is bent on creating an Islamist oriental despotism. pl

  18. turcopolier says:

    “Does Erdogan fear and loathe the secularists more than the Russians and the Iranians?” Yes. The secularists are the enemies of his life illusion concerning the restoration of the Ottoman leadership of the Umma. The Russians are merely local players that he must mollify for economic and military reasons and the Iranians are apostates or schismatics (depending on your POV) to be punished but not a threat to his possible ascension. pl

  19. ISL says:

    Does anyone have an idea of how these lists were compiled? I am looking to help a colleague in Istanbul (letter of invite to speak at my company), and do not want to accidentally get him on a list.

  20. turcopolier says:

    “Was Gulen/CIA behind the coup or just foil/excuse?” Sounds like you have seen too many Bourne movies. The Obozo Administration LOVED Erdogan before this. They would NEVER have wanted to oust him. pl

  21. turcopolier says:

    the leaders of the IC are now bureaucratic politicians first and always. They are telling the Borg what they think it wants to hear. pl

  22. The Beaver says:

    @ Istanbul Guy
    Is there a reason why Erdo’s son-in-law is always close by the President since the coup?

  23. Marcy says:

    Corporate media does not ask questions anymore, of anyone. It simply collects answers from its masters and expects its consumers, its readers and viewers, to buy the story it spins.

  24. Max says:

    Yeah, Trump has the ability to see a few more levels of permutations out than the average person. His throwing out the possibility this was a faux coup, while simultaneously playing it down through expressing admiration for Erdogan, is high-level deal-making stuff that will send neurotic neocons to rubber rooms.
    David Brooks was having an aneurism over Trump’s NYT comments on NATO and Erodgan.
    Linda Graham is having a hissy fit and calling on Trump to explain and justify his comments.
    Trump’s like, “Whatever. Give me your new number Linda and I call and explain.”
    This is the best political season EVER. It’s a shame so much is at stake or it could be more fun. I agree with Ann Coulter, that “if Trump doesn’t win, it’s light out for America”. I would add that if Trump doesn’t win, we can also extinguish all hope in saving what’s left to save of Western Europe.
    This news story could be out of a Evelyn Waugh novel. Not! Maybe an Enoch Powell dystopian speech.

  25. A fair point. I myself am undecided as to whether this was a real coup attempt sponsored by Washington, or perhaps an ‘autogolpe’ (as the Peruvians would say) on the part of Erdogan. Both seem quite plausible to me.

  26. Cee says:

    I agree with him.
    For those who still aren’t convinced that Russia has some serious grounds for concern as the US-led war machine grinds ever closer, let’s put the situation into its proper perspective. Let’s imagine that the geopolitical chessboard were suddenly flipped and it is Russia that is now busy hatching a 28-member military alliance near America’s border, for example, in Latin America (and after Moscow had pledged not to increase the membership of the military bloc following the collapse of the Soviet Union
    The same goes to the nuclear power in the ME that is a yoke on our necks.

  27. Fred says:

    “the French have been under similar restrictions…”
    President Hollande arrested 9,000 members of the military and arrested hundreds of judges and fired tens of thousands of teachers, etc? Pray tell how he kept all that secret?

  28. Sam Peralta says:

    The interview of Trump on foreign affairs by the Pravda on the Hudson, should make it very clear that he is no “clown” as the corporate media like to portray. For anyone who believes foreign affairs is an important yardstick to make a decision on which candidate to support in November, then this interview should make it clear that Trump is a significantly better candidate than Hillary who has a track record of being wrong in all the interventions she has supported.
    BTW, Pence made a lot of sense as the VP pick. Someone that balances Trump’s charismatic, off-the-cuff personality by being bland. He also helps shore up the evangelicals that after Cruz’s slithering performance last night will be squarely for Trump if they are as “christian” as they claim to be. Lyin Ted lived up to his moniker as the slithering snake that he is.

  29. Bill Herschel says:

    Colonel Lang, is it your opinion that Erdogan is moving closer to or farther away from ISIS? I genuinely don’t understand the theory that he is moving *toward* Russia and hence toward Assad. To me, that makes no sense at all. Isn’t he trying to create Saudi Arabia North?

  30. Bill Herschel says:

    If Erdogan is pivoting away from the U.S. and toward Russia, Iran, Syria, as described in this article, then that is earthshaking news. I remain very confused. I happen to think (hope?) that the safest place for the nuclear weapons at Incirlik is, in fact, in the hands of the Russians, but that is only my personal opinion. Russia will be the last nation on earth to start a nuclear war.
    There’s apparently still no outside juice at Incirlik.
    This could turn out to be a very interesting moment in human history. However much there remains of it.

  31. steveg says:

    Who will take the place of these general officers
    if a full scale war breaks out. Is he patterning
    these purges after Uncle Joe S? Or are his services
    festooned with too many flags not unlike USA.
    We know what it cost the Soviet Union if the
    creme is skimmed.

  32. Croesus says:

    Tangent-to Slightly off topic: Trump and Sanger discussed cyber security and cyber warfare.
    Marco Roscini, a scholar of international law, recently published
    Cyber Operations and the Use of Force in International Law
    A Symposium discussed the book last June —

  33. Jackrabbit says:

    I not sure how to read your reply. I’ll be more specific.
    >>>>> Was Gulen/CIA behind the coup …
    Erdogan says it was Gulen. Many believe that Gulen is a CIA asset. If Gulen is involved, they reason, the CIA would have known or be involved also. Some claim that US/NATO/CIA was unhappy with re-normalization of relations between Turkey and Russia and that now that the “coup” has been foiled, Erdogan will turn to Russia.
    >>>>> … or just foil/excuse?
    I see no reason why US/NATO/CIA/Mossad/etc would want to overthrow Erdogan. Erdogan has done what they wanted him to do. If anything, it is Erdogan that is unhappy with US/NATO for tying his hands and cozying up to the Kurds.
    Turkey is very important to the ‘Assad must go!’ effort so over-throwing Erdogan would only impede that effort. Plus, from the POV of ‘Assad must go!’ the next stage of conflict might benefit from a more independent Turkey that is not constrained by US/NATO concern of open conflict with Russia.
    In this scenario, Erdogan and the Islamist hardliners are deliberately strengthened by a faux/ff coup which blamed on Gulen and ‘mad dog’ Erdogan slips his leash.
    Your “Obozo loved him” comment argues for the later. In which case, the notion that Erdogan was ‘tipped off’ about a coup rings false. Instead, it would be more likely that Erdogan/MIT/CIA worked to set up the coup so that Erdogan strengthened his position in Turkey.
    The US-originated rumor (as the coup was failing) that Erdogan was seeking asylum in Germany would have worked in Erdogan’s favor by causing some careful individuals to make themselves known.

  34. turcopolier says:

    Why are you asking me the same question again? “If Gulen is involved, they reason, the CIA would have known or be involved also” Ah, no Recruited assets come in all levels of devotion to the recruiter or the supposed recruiting group. they often deceive or omit things. Part of the craft of the case officer is to perceive when they are doing that. pl

  35. oofda says:

    Regarding the New York Times article on Trump’s comments on foreign policy and NATO- I found it the opposite– totally impossible to support him for those remarks. These ill-informed, off-the-top-of-his-head remarks are very harmful to U.S. interests. There has been a firestorm of criticism about them from home (Rs and Ds both) and abroad. Even the SecGen of NATO, who is normally very loath to interfere in U.S. domestic politics, decried the remarks. Examples of responses are below

  36. turcopolier says:

    Bill Herschel
    Saudi Arabia? SA has no religious significance at all. A state built by usurpers clinging to the edge of the Wahhabi sect. The status of “king” like that of “sultan” are essentially irreligious inventions of humans that are really nor sanctioned in almost any form of Islam (except among the Ibadhis in Oman). the sultan of the Ottomans assumed the title of caliph because he needed to be seen as having legitimacy, not just power. The kings of Morocco and Jordan are thought legitimate by many because they are “shariif,” i.e., of the blood of the prophet. IS is a rival for the status, that in my opinion, Erdogan wants. He helped them for a time IMO in the hope that they would prepare the ground for him but then they turned against him. Now they are enemies. Might he help help Russia against the non-IS jihadis? He might but it would only be because they have become inconvenient to his ambition. He always be an enemy to the multi-confessional government of Syria. He regards the Israelis as dhimmi People of the Book who can be used for a time. All of you people continue to plow the barren ground of poly sci for answers. pl

  37. SmoothieX12 says:

    Is he patterning these purges after Uncle Joe S?
    What is “patterning” purges after Stalin? You mean “troika” commissions? Or you mean show case trials?
    We know what it cost the Soviet Union if the creme is skimmed.
    No, you don’t, unless you read some propaganda. While army’s purges in 1937 and up to 1941 did have some inevitable adverse effect on overall performance of the Red Army early months of Great Patriotic War these were not purges which predetermined Red Army’s early defeats in 1941. If you don’t believe me, read assessments of pre-war and First Period Of War by David Glantz and Johnathan House in 2015 re-issue of their seminal “When Titans Clashed: How The Red Army Stopped Hitler”. Issues of the fighting doctrine and institutional transition during the onset of Barbarossa were by far most decisive factors in what turned out to be a very bloody Summer of 1941 for the Red Army.

  38. turcopolier says:

    Seamus Padraig
    “a real coup attempt sponsored by Washington,” what part of the Obama Administration LOVED Erdogan did you miss?

  39. Bandolero says:

    “Does anyone wish to argue that Tayyip Sultan is not attempting to create a totalitarian state?”
    I do. As I understand it, Erdogan just cleans important Turkish state institutions from people whom he suspects of having dual loyalties to certain foreign countries or people residing in certain foreign countries.
    As many people in the private education sector are suspected to have dual loyalties to a person residing in such a foreign country, Erdogan revoked the licenses of their institutions so that they can’t use their positions in the education industry to built more of a network of people with dual loyalties.
    I don’t think that’s designed to build a totalitarian state. I think it’s more likely designed to make a Turkish state where the loyalties of state employees are with the Turkish state, and only the Turkish state, instead of having loyalties to a certain foreign state not deemed to be a friend anymore by Turkey, too.

  40. turcopolier says:

    It is surprising how many of you Germans are deeply hostile to the US. Do you yearn to see Germany purged of American influences? pl

  41. SmoothieX12 says:

    The only commodity in politics is power. Anyone who begins to pontificate with all those “democracy” and “human rights” gospels, unless we are talking about something truly atrocious on genocidal scale, should remember that the power is the only commodity which matters–it is the hard currency. It always was like this, is like this and will remain like this for a foreseeable future, unless we kill ourselves in nuclear Armageddon (hopefully, not). People from the “elites” sell their souls for power (HRC or Bill, anyone?), they lust it, they are ready to go to almost any length to get it. Erdogan maybe (in fact he is) is a Son Of A Bitch but, unless it is proven that he staged the coup–and I lean more towards that he didn’t (I could be wrong, of course)–no matter how we like him or not, he is for now a legitimate President, he acted within his capacity against C-O-U-P and as such he defended the Constitution of his nation. Again, is he SOB? Absolutely! He is Islamic dictator but he used his powers generally prudently. How he begins to behave after–it is totally different matter but he behaves more or less as any powerful man would if his legitimate power was assaulted. Donald understands that and those who still think that US “democracy” (in reality oligarchic Republic) is stuffed with liberty-loving altruistic servants–they better wake up, with some minor exceptions of true civil servants, most are into this for a single thing–power, which later easily translates into money and pursuit of happiness (strictly on individual bases). Donald supports not necessarily SOB Erdogan, he supports the institute of a legitimate political power. In this sense, Donald is correct.

  42. steveg says:

    Okay professor, if your past is
    prologue how do you envision
    this playing out? My intention as
    a question.

  43. Thomas says:

    The only Washington DC involvement with Gulen and the Clueless Coup would come from one of the many private Security Consultant firms or associated think tanks. There are a few psychopathic Billionaires throwing around money for pet causes and to fulfill their fantasy foreign affairs pleasures that would invest in a peace council coup, especially if they felt it would help their ultimate pet cause’s interests.

  44. SmoothieX12 says:

    1. I am not a professor. I only express my opinions on subjects which I know on level required for more or less correct generalizations.
    2. How I envision it playing out in what sense:
    a) Internally (I am not a scholar on Turkey, my guess is as good as anyone’s);
    b) Geo-politically–it is a serious matter and I can only speculate in some fairly limited framework–namely Turkey’s emerging relations with Eurasian Economic Union. This speculation requires a fairly large elaboration for which at this very moment I don’t have time. Maybe tomorrow. I may need to talk to my friends in Baku–their perspective may help to understand things better.

  45. HankP says:

    SmoothieX12 –
    Trump has a history of admiring strongmen no matter how they gained power, and no matter what heinous actions they’ve taken. Appealing to realpolitik doesn’t make it sound any better.

  46. Jack says:

    PeteM, Bandolero, et al
    In the fullness of time, all of you CIA did it conspiracy theorists, will come to realize that the Sultan is the Turkish state. No dissent to his autocratic rule will be tolerated. When he holds Merkel and the EU mandarins hostage watch them take it like champs.
    As Col. Lang has noted before once Islamists take power they will ditch the democracy part and rule by force. Sooner rather than later as folks catch on the flight into Europe will accelerate. And that will only benefit Le Pen and other more reactionary elements who have a much different view of multi-culture PCness. Good luck!

  47. sam says:

    This is reminiscent of the cultural revolution in China. He is purging all the technocrats and educated people.. Turkey is going down the tube

  48. Bill Herschel says:

    I am ignorant in my own right. I have never taken political science which from the outside looks like an oxymoron. Your response is what I wanted. Thanks.

  49. Bill Herschel says:

    More enlightenment. Thanks.

  50. Jackrabbit says:

    Well, I’m not the one making the assumption that Gulen=CIA involvement. The importance of that argument is the notion that Erdogan will make a strategic turn toward Russia.
    I agreed with your earlier comment that a CIA-backed coup would not fail so completely. But there is much that I am not understanding about the various theories offered to explain the coup. To me, going ahead with a coup that was so disorganized (due to the timetable being moved up twice) strains logic. Why go ahead with the coup if success is uncertain? The degree of miscalculation is breathe-taking: failed within hours; no popular support; all opposition parties denounced it; etc.
    IMO the simplest explanation is that ‘Assad must go!’ countries worked with Erdogan/MIT to strengthen Erdogan by enticing some low-level officers into an coup attempt. That makes the “coup” a convenient pretext and Gulen’s influence a convenient excuse for a wholesale purge and power grab.
    A desire to strengthen Erdogan fits with:
    > Breakdown of ceasefire / re-arming of rebels;
    > Demands for Russia/Iran to abandon Assad (e.g. implementation of Iran peace deal in jeopardy as US maintains sanctions);
    > Israel says that it doesn’t want ISIS to be defeated.
    Sure, that goes against the grain of official explanations, but how much should we trust those explanations anyway? Is such speculation so outlandish that it is ‘Borne’ material?
    You’ve said that you know the person that betrayed the coup. But have you asked yourself how reliable that is? Is your info consistent with a Gulen-inspired or Gulen-orchestrated coup? How does the US-sourced rumor that Erdogan was seeking asylum in Germany fit in? (Sibel Edmonds believes it was a desperate attempt to make the coup succeed – I question that interpretation because IMO the coup was too weak to succeed at all.)
    Apologies for the length of the comment.

  51. Jack says:

    This is so sad. If our IC can’t provide unvarnished reality-based intelligence because the Borgistas are unwilling to accept, then we’re fooked.
    Is careerism so deeply entrenched that unless there is a cultural revolution we have no hope to return to a more realistic regime of political decision making?

  52. Jack says:

    My own take from reading the transcript of his interview is more nuanced. He did say there was a possibility that this was a faux coup. He admired the Sultans power play in this regard and felt that this was not the time for us to meddle when we had other pressing issues. In fairness his interview on foreign affairs will go down well with all those that want a more sane and non-interventionist policy. His points on nuclear escalation and his ability to build a friendship with Russia should be welcome relief compared to the Borgist policies of Dubya, Obummer and the Borg Queen. IMO, Trump’s calling for more common sense policies that favor our interests first will resonate strongly in flyover country where this election will be decided.

  53. bth says:

    So this article says that on Monday the US signed a 10 year MOU with KRG to fund, train Kurds and US operate 5 bases including at least 2 air bases (which ironically we built years ago) in Kurdish Iraq. This probably explains Sadr’s Monday threat to US soldiers in Iraq and might have some role to play in Erdogan’s thinking with regard to Incirlik.

  54. Kelly Hall says:

    Great idea, Erdogan! You’ve got 60K people who, if they didn’t want you out before, now they do. And now they’ve got no jobs and no income and no way to get out.
    Essentially, Erdogan just created a fulltime anti-Erdogan army with no reason to not try again, but this time with lots of violence.

  55. VietnamVet says:

    Thank heaven for your experience and expertise.
    The loss of Turkey is disastrous. The Ottoman Caliphate has risen out of the ashes of secularism. Corporate media will ignore it as much as possible in an attempt to elect Hillary Clinton and continue the reign of predatory capitalism. Turkey will likely ally with Russia for protection and in the short term close Turkish borders because the ISIS pretenders are lowly desert Arabs. The Turkish Armed Forces are finished. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, to keep his head, will have to rely on his Islamist power base. In long term he has to regain the lost territories to be acclaimed the true Sultan. The heretic Shiite crescent to the South from Beirut to Tehran will have to be cut for the same reasons as the House of Saud paid to do it to the North. In the long run, if there is to be any chance for peace in the Middle East and return the refugees home, Iraq and Syria have to reconstituted as sovereign nations with secure borders and the military strength and alliances to repel any invasion from the North or South.
    This is off topic but related. The Middle Class is being ripped apart. The United States is becoming unstable due to the endless wars and financial exploitation. If Donald Trump is elected, a Christian Dominionist, Mike Pence, will be one heart beat from the Presidency. A secular constitutional United States of America is at peril.

  56. Walrus says:

    It is not often we get to witness the birth of a totalitarian state. Erdogan clearly has ambition to recreate the Ottoman Empire as Col. Lang correctly states.
    His actions now are designed to cement his control over every institution in Turkey, destroy those he can’t control and neutralise or destroy any possible kernel from which an opposing organisation might be grown at home or abroad. That is the reason for neutralising teachers and educational institutions – they breed dissenters, the truth shall make you free and all that. The travel prohibitions and exhortations to students to return are clearly designed to forestall the formation of an overseas based dissident organisation.
    What we need to do now is support Turkish dissidents at home and abroad.

  57. FB Ali says:

    You seem to have been reading too much sensationalized fiction, such as the Tom Clancy books.
    I would recommend a little read on Occam’s Razor!

  58. Bandolero says:

    Though I grew up with US propaganda lies about the Soviet Union worse than GWBs story on Iraqs WMDs I’m not hostile to the US. That was in the past. Today I like to see a good relationshsip between the US and Germany.
    But a big problem for me is the behaviour of the US regarding war and peace. And that’s not only based on the desire of the US ambassador in Germany to have US nukes in Germany – which most of the German people don’t want – because pulling out the US nukes from Germany may trigger people in Turkey asking for the same. It’s not only based on US nukes in Germany having the purpose of disturbing German friendship with Russia, thereby being in Germany against German interests.
    The real propblem I have with the US is that my impression is that in the US a faction took power which seemingly knows no limits in waging wars of aggression. And using it’s influence in Germany that US faction tries to enlist Germany in such US designed supreme crimes. Take for example the bombing of Belgrad, the occupation of Afghanistan, the war on Iraq, the war by deception and terror on Libya, the covert terror war on Syria and the coup in Ukraine, just to name a few. Most of following such US-led policy is done in Germany by US agents of influence in the name of defending common Western values. The hypocrisy couldn’t be greater. Just think of Iraqs alleged WMDs, Guantanamo, Abu Ghraib and the Nuremberg principles.
    So, do I like to see the German state, and other relevant private institutions in Germany, purged of followers of the Borg, GWB, BHO, HRC and other war criminals? Of course I do. I don’t like Germany to wage wars of aggression on behalf of the U.S., or a third country which may have taken control of relevant state institutions in the US.
    Regarding that third country, which may have taken control of relevant state institutions of the US to get the US to wage proxy wars for it’s own interests, I would be very happy if the US would do a similar purge like it is currently happening in Turkey on people with dual loyalties, because I think it would seriously undermine the US drive to bloody senseless wars around the globe, which is not benefitting anyone.
    So, yes, I would think a purge of the German state of undue US influences would be a good thing, just as the purge of the Turkish state of undue US influences would be a good thing and the purge of of the US state of undue Israeli influences would be a good thing. I do think the world would become more peaceful if that happened, however I also think it’s a long way to go.
    Even the worst case of a HRC presidency in the US serving only Israeli interests still may happen.

  59. Kooshy says:

    IMO, as long as US is keeping and practicing same old Cold War era foreign policy with just a facade remodeling since the USSR collapse, we shouldn’t expect any change in what US will or can do. What US/ we will do? As before we will pay our way to our fat lazy collective security allies (NATO).
    Erdo’ new learned foreign policy in ways, is more advance than that of ours, he knows in this situation we are (Russia, Ukraine, Eurasia) much like the Europeans with refugees case, US curent foreign policy has no choice, but to pay him and take any shit he loads upon us. US doesn’t need NATO or to protect any free unpaid security to any SOB on count of Russia’ rise. IMO let the lazy SOBs, deal with whatever Russian/Putin themselves, the EU’ GDP is almost as big.

  60. michael brenner says:

    A Turkish former PhD student of mine has just been sacked from a university position. He has no Gulen ties or political ties whatsoever – although secular in his private life. In a previous professional incarnation, he was an official dealing with human trafficking (but has no dual loyalty to the Ukrainian or Albanian mafia).

  61. JerseyJeffersonian says:

    As to saving Western Europe, well, they’ve got to do better than this story out of Finland.
    Comes a knock at the door, a guy opens it, only to be bum-rushed by three home invaders with baseball bats and a gun; he retreats to the kitchen, grabs a knife and defends himself, eventually overmastering the invaders, injuring them in the process. But wait, he injured them too much, and winds up paying them damages and being sentenced to prison. Four years, €21,000 fine. The home invaders also got short sentences and fines. But how does this work? You are assaulted in your own home by criminals armed with potentially lethal weapons, you have no idea where this is going, you defend yourself in a manner befitting the occasion (i.e., fighting as if your life depended on it, as seems logical), and you get the book thrown at you.
    The sort of logic applied by the Finnish Solons goes a long way towards explaining the supine behavior of too many Europeans when confronted by criminality perpetrated by “refugees”.
    Lord helps those as helps themselves.

  62. turcopolier says:

    “US propaganda lies about the Soviet Union” What were these lies? Question: Was the GSFG a defensive deployment in East Germany to prevent a NATO invasion of the Warsaw Pact? Dis you grow up in the GDR? “the desire of the US ambassador in Germany to have US nukes in Germany” You do know I hope that an ambassador these days is just a messenger? He doesn’t set policy about anything except hours in the lujch room. “wars of aggression on behalf of the U.S., or a third country which may have taken control of relevant state institutions in the US.” Ah, you mean Israel. Which wars of aggression? ” I would think a purge of the German state of undue US influences would be a good thing, just as the purge of the Turkish state of undue US influences would be a good thing and the purge of of the US state of undue Israeli influences would be a good thing.” You sre an enemy of the United States. Do you still think of yourself asa Marxist-Leninist? pl

  63. turcopolier says:

    Jack. Careerism is not the problem. The problem is that the handful of people who run the IC agencies are bureaucratic politicians, people like Clapper, Tenant and Brenner. They don’t give a damn about the truth. They care about themselves. pl

  64. turcopolier says:

    “I agreed with your earlier comment that a CIA-backed coup would not fail so completely” Where did I say that? IMO a CIA attempt to trigger a coup these days would be like watching a monkey f–k a football. pl

  65. kooshy says:

    I think colonel is right thinking soon Erdo will form his own state security force with wide authority (like SS) watching over state military and security forces. With rate he is arresting military officers it means he can not trust the remaining service men, without seriously damaging state’ security forces command structure.

  66. Amir says:

    The Iranians are an example to emulate for Erdogan. Dictatorship of the majority will be established by the Sultan.

  67. Herb says:

    Throwing 60,000 elites into unemployment and/or detention is a bold move. The verdict is out if it is a reckless move.
    Certainly this will have a significant negative impact on the economy and the stability of Turkey as a country. I doubt foreign investors of any scale are pleased. It is likely many of the cast out professionals were not previously politically motivated. Not so now. While they were within government structures, they were easier to monitor. Again, not so much now.
    It’s pretty clear that Erdogan and his cronies want to create a one-ruler authoritarian government, run by revolving “state of emergency” until all power levers are controlled by their group, but it is less clear that they have sufficient smarts, power, or funding to pull that off given the other constraints they are under (international commitments, kurdish rebellion, ISIS, Syrian instability, etc.). Now they are adding a third of their internal elite as adversaries and potential regime destabilizers.
    That is a lot of balls to juggle.

  68. Jackrabbit says:

    Sorry. You didn’t say that.
    You said that it was a ff; that the coup was betrayed.
    Question: What do you think of the rumor, apparently started by MSNBC – citing a senior US official – that Erdogan was seeking asylum in Germany? What might explain that?

  69. Babak Makkinejad says:

    During the AKP rule, 300 private TV and Radio stations have been founded.
    It was CNN Turkey that spread Erdogan’s message to the Turkish people against that attempt at coup.
    To become a totalitarian state like USSR, AKP has to close all independent press – of which there are plenty in Turkey, close all the private broadcasters, outlaw all other political parties, unify AKP and the State, and basically follow the Stalinist program.
    That has not yet happened and I doubt that it will.
    In my opinion, sooner or later, AKP will be defeated in an election and will loose power.

  70. Babak Makkinejad says:

    KRG is not sovereign and cannot legally make such treaties.

  71. Babak Makkinejad says:

    40 years earlier, during the 1980 Coup in Turkey, universities were closed and this Turkish professor of physics showed up; trying to get a master’s degree in metallurgy…
    Kemalist or AKP, it odes not matter – they are cut from the same cloth…

  72. Babak Makkinejad says:

    That is like expecting a man in Brusselss to have insight into French Politics.

  73. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Sunnis cannot readily emulate the experiment in Iran, there is no basis in their history of jurisprudence for anything akin to the Doctrine of Supreme Jurisprudent or that of Ijtihad.
    Even if Erdogan had a last minute conversion, the human material for the basis of such a system does not exist in the Sunni World.
    Iranian leaders keep on saying that the AKP is closest to them, but that is like saying a flame is the closest non-living analogue to a living being.

  74. ISL says:

    Kooshy, I understand that slowly, military servicemen favorable to a non-secular state have been shifting the composition of the military (for over a decade). IMO the purge is not a kick start, but the culmination of an ongoing, long-term process (reversing Attaturk’s legacy), leaving a more loyal (to Erdogan) force. This in no way disagrees with the likelihood of a new state security force solely loyal to Erdogan.

  75. PeteM says:

    These people were arrested for some type of involvement in the coup before the state of emergency was authorized. My comment was about the difference in the reporting and the ideas projected about the dangers of the Turkish SOE which were not reported when the French SOE was put into effect.

  76. Old Microbiologist says:

    Plus, the emergency conditions permit the use of the death penalty while not being in violation with EU policy. It can be extended indefinitely but it is in effect for 3 months at a time.

  77. LondonBob says:

    More alarmed by the antics of Breedlove and Shirreff, they nearly got the war they wanted. NATO must either be reformed or abandoned, I credit Trump for not backing down this.

  78. Bill Herschel says:

    I would say the baseball season is a total loss and I’m worried about football.
    “At Incirlik, the loss of power is a reminder that life at the base is far from returning to what it was only a few months ago, when it was home to hundreds of military spouses and children who attended school and competed on sports teams.
    In March, the Pentagon pulled families out of the base because of security concerns after a series of terrorist attacks. Now, generators are abuzz around the clock as warplanes routinely launch from the runway.
    For some family members back home, the changes are a cause for anxiety.
    “My daughter is there, still without lights & hot water in her dorm. Everything is not running as normal … ppl are sleeping on sleeping bags in the warehouse just to stay cool. This is so upsetting!” wrote one parent on the base’s Facebook page.”

  79. Bill Herschel says:

    Would anyone care to comment on the possibility that Putin made Erdogan an offer he couldn’t refuse?
    After eliminating the impossible, however improbable that might be, it seems to resemble the truth.
    I think it is true that Putin was genuinely pissed off when Erdogan shot down the SU-24. And it may very well be the case that Putin remembers these things.
    And then there’s this:

  80. Giroro says:

    Should I live to see Constantinople again? After all I witnessed the fall of the Berlin wall.

  81. notlurking says:

    Yes a very interesting and thorough analysis by Mr Kassem…..after reading it a few times because of the many links, it has changed my outlook on Erdogan and Turkey….

  82. turcopolier says:

    Just guessing, but I doubt that. pl

  83. turcopolier says:

    Bill Herschel
    “My daughter is there, still without lights & hot water in her dorm. Everything is not running as normal … ppl are sleeping on sleeping bags in the warehouse just to stay cool. This is so upsetting!” Sob! Moms are great. pl

  84. SmoothieX12 says:

    That is like expecting a man in Brusselss to have insight into French Politics
    Babak, Baku’s cultural milieu is very, how to put it, Turkey-dominated. My friends, granted their backgrounds (they are Azeri who are closely connected with Turkey) and age, are not your regular civilians. I will stop here in explaining it.

  85. bth says:

    Somehow I think the rent check will get cashed

  86. bth says:

    Wish you rooted for the home team one in awhile.

  87. SmoothieX12 says:

    Trump has a history of admiring strongmen no matter how they gained power
    All depends on a definition of a “strongman” or “men”. Pol Pot was a “strongman”, so was Mao–I doubt Trump admires them. I also have some doubts on Trump admiring Hitler.

  88. Istanbul Guy says:

    Commercial power was reconnected to Incirlik today.

  89. Fred says:

    Your original statement ” the French have been under similar restrictions”.
    There has been no mass arrest of French citizens.

  90. turcopolier says:

    Istanbul Guy
    Any public statements about the re-connect of electricity? pl

  91. Jackrabbit says:

    I assume you mean that you doubt that Erdogan was seeking asylum.
    Maybe you are unaware that Sibel Edmonds has ‘called out’ NBC/MSNBC for having tweeted/reported that a “senior US military official” informed them that Erdogan was seeking asylum in Germany. This started a serious of rumors about Erdogan’s seeking asylum.
    The MSNBC producer later deleted his tweet (no retraction) and blocked anyone asking about it.
    Sibel Edmonds thinks that this tweet shows US hand in the plot: an attempt to support the coup. Her reporting seems pro-Erdogan to me because she promotes the view that “the people” rescued democracy when in fact those who answered Erdogan’s ‘call’ to take to the streets seem to be AKP/Erdogan loyalists.
    She is demanding a retraction from MSNBC
    <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>
    IMO the weakness of the coup means that the false asylum tweet HELPED Erdogan because it may have enticed some anti-Erdogan people to make their views known. These people would then be added to the list of those to-be-purged.
    The tweet was a little before 2:30PM. About the same time that Erdogan gave a FaceTime interview with CNNTurk that called for his supporters to take to the streets. About 90 minutes later, Obama issued a (pro-Erdogan) statement supporting the elected government and urging restraint.

  92. FB Ali says:

    You seem to ignore the fact that the Ottoman Empire (and Caliphate) contained a lot of non-Sunnis (Shia, Christians, etc). They were citizens of the country, and were able to practice their religious faiths.

  93. PeteM says:

    It would certainly be reckless for the Turkish government to leave any of these people, it fired or arrested, in their positions knowing of their divided loyalties and I don’t mean loyalty to an individual or party but to the country and its institutions. I haven’t seen any listing of people in the private sector being affected except for the private school teachers, they seem to be police, military and government bureaucrats mostly and in a country of about 70 million they shouldn’t be hard to replace.
    The worldwide Great Recession is affecting everyone and the shibboleth that foreign investors interests should trump internal security is a purely hegemonic concept besides these investors don’t seem to be interested in productive projects lately when they can gamble and collect rents with little risk.
    Your projection about what Erdogan and the people of Turkey seem to want is certainly bold but doesn’t seem to be very well informed. This opinion seems to be based of Erdogans desire to and failed attempt to institute a Presidential system much like our system. According to one analysis this will actually limit the President’s powers by codifying them something that the present Turkish constitution doesn’t do.
    It’s telling that many western observers project the worst western behaviors onto eastern leaders as if they have no choice but to follow our examples.

  94. SmoothieX12 says:

    “US propaganda lies about the Soviet Union” What were these lies?
    Why were, there are still plenty–this time about Russia. We may talk all we want about GSFG and its “posture” but unless (God forbids) US loses 27 million people and has its Eastern Part completely obliterated as a result of invasion–all of it will be a moot point. The history of the Cold War hasn’t been written yet. Only now some appropriate adjustments are beginning to be made in a historical sense. The main and only (and it remains such today too) main objective of Soviet post-WW II doctrines (and thinking) was “Never Again”. “Never Again” being allowing any invasion into Soviet/Russian lands. Most (not all) “Western” “scholars”, let alone general public, simply have no grasp of the scale of the events in USSR and Eastern Europe in 1941-1945. Nor do they have a grasp of physical and psychological trauma such events can produce.
    Now comes this funny little thing–experiences. I know Soviet military system from the inside (deep inside) and I can testify with facts on hand that overall Soviet military posture remained defensive. Even massive Soviet Navy was built around Sea Denial doctrine which has very little to do with Power Projection–the doctrine around which US carrier and amphibious-centric Navy is build. In other words the Fleet of invasion. Come to think about it–most US wars are expeditionary in nature.

  95. turcopolier says:

    An interesting topic. “At the beginning of 1991 there were still about 338,000 soldiers in 24 divisions, distributed among five land armies and an air army in what was by then the Western Group of Forces. In addition, there were about 208,000 relatives of officers as well as civil employees, among them about 90,000 children. Most locations were in the area of today’s Brandenburg.
    In 1991 there were approximately 4,200 tanks, 8,200 armored vehicles, 3,600 artillery pieces, 106,000 other motor vehicles, 690 aircraft, 680 helicopters, and 180 rocket systems.[5]” wiki of GSFG
    I find it hard to believe that the USSR + Warsaw Pact thought that Allied Command Europe (NATO )existed for the purpose of invading the German Democratic Republic. In one of my jobs I knew a lot about US war plans and they all were based on a scenario of WP invasion across the Intra-German demarcation line. GRU and the other WP intelligence services had successful penetrations of NATO governments. Surely they would have known what was in NATO plans?
    As to today, I agree that it appears to me that Russia is much maligned. I have asked friends still working to tell me what is the actual evidence of Russian aggression. They have not come up with any except various references to Ukraine. You are arguing that the USSR was slandered as to its intentions in the CW? pl

  96. Babak Makkinejad says:

    They were not citizens, they were subjects. They had no rights except those which the Sultan and the Pashas saw fit to confer upon them.
    From time to time, the Pasha or this Velayat would wage on the Pasha of that Velayat – putting the inhabitants to sword – with nary a peep out of the Sublime Port.
    And then there were periodic massacres of the Christians or other infidels – like the Shia – by the Pashas…
    There were many good reasons to celebrate the demise of the Ottoman Empire.

  97. PeteM says:

    There was no coup in France but there was a number of suspects arrested because of the attacks, the coup in Turkey justified the arrest of the criminals who were involved there and other suspects.
    The states of emergency in both countries are comparable and are the ‘similar restrictions’ on the whole country I’m referring to.
    I hope you get the distinction because I don’t think I’m allowed to comment further on France.

  98. Thomas says:

    A point you are missing is the Turkish Government had previously stated that they want to improve relations with Syria which means time for conflict closure.

  99. Thomas says:

    You mean the home team that shoots down a civilian airliner and blames the other while denouncing anyone who questions the score?

  100. PeteM says:

    No it’s not but thanks for another interesting link. The article I referred to was published a few days ago.

  101. different clue says:

    The problem is that different US factions will advance different notions of US interests. If Clinton is elected, the DC FedRegime will attempt winning Erdogan over based on renewed support for toppling Assad and supporting all the alphabet jihadis, coupled with a token effort just for appearances to oppose ISIS.
    If Trump is elected, we maybe have a chance to signal our acceptance of Erdogan’s re-orientation towards Russia, Iran and the SCO . . . IF Erdogan changes 180 from “Assad must go” to “Assads rebel opponents must be exterminated.” We should set up a “ready-to-go” set of sanctions and boycotts designed to make Turkey as poor as South Sudan if Erdogan thinks he can combine his new “re-orientation” with his same old opposition to Assad and support for the Global Axis of Jihad. We should consider wiping out the Global Axis of Jihad to be more important than maintaining the current so-called “stability” which is designed to advance the Global Axis of Jihad’s interests and goals.

  102. different clue says:

    The Beaver,
    Those Turkish students abroad might all be advised to request political asylum where they are. Then governments might think about how to respond when the Erdogist government takes all their remaining family members hostage to try forcing all the overseas Turkish student asylum seekers to return.

  103. Castellio says:

    You are absolutely right in your first paragraph. We certainly need a re-presentation of the European 20th century; but it might be long in coming.

  104. visitor says:

    Suspending the ECHR is perfectly legal, and there is even a provision in the ECHR regarding this: article 15, “Derogation in time of emergency”,
    And by the way: France likewise suspended the ECHR after the attacks at the end of last year.

  105. turcopolier says:

    No. Go ahead. I look forward to the opportunity to comment on your remarks. pl

  106. Bandolero says:

    “”US propaganda lies about the Soviet Union” What were these lies?”
    The basic US propaganda lie was that the Soviet Union was aggressive and a credible threat to Western Germany. However, behind that there were many more US propaganda lies, like Western Germany under nomnial leadership of John Mc Cloys brother in law Adenauer was a democracy, had independent unions and freedom of expression, the US was against totalitarism, fascism and racism, the Soviet Union was behind the devision of Germany and Europe, the founding of the FRG was a reaction to the founding of the GDR, the founding of NATO was a reaction to the founding of the Warsaw contract, and so on and so forth.
    “Question: Was the GSFG a defensive deployment in East Germany to prevent a NATO invasion of the Warsaw Pact?”
    As you may have noted, the GSFG came to East Germany only after the German military killed tens of millions of people in the Soviet Union and tried to conquer large parts of Russia, including Moscow and Petersburg, because in Germany there happened to be a “colored revolution” of the color brown, financed by the US and inspired by US works of ideology, politically aiming to support British and US schemes of aggression against the Soviet Union.
    During the end phase of WWII, Britain and the US wanted to continue the war to conquer Russia, but their so called “Operation Unthinkable” was militarily deemed to risky, so they called it off. Directly after WWII Britain and the US betrayed agreements with the Soviet Union by dividing Germany, and the US military intelligence (a bit later the CIA took over these terror groups) lost no time to set up terror groups to destabilize Soviet run Eastern Germany with bombings and killings to overthrow the Soviet backed regime there. A founder of one such US-backed Western German terror group, KgU, was later rewarded with the post of chief justice of the German constitutional court. However, the US-led destabilization attempts of Eastern Germany and Eastern Europe instrumentalizing fascist terror (not only in Germany, think of Bandera, too) were not successful in overthrowing the governments, because Soviet tanks prevented that.
    “Dis you grow up in the GDR?”
    NO,I grew up in the FRG. I was a target of these US propaganda lies, that’s why I know the lies well, which the people in the FRG were told about the Soviet Union, the nature of the US and German politics. As I later found out, people in the GDR had it much easier to learn about reality, because their education system and media told them lot’s of basic things about the Western system, which we people in the FRG weren’t told by our totalitarian US rule. Oh, did I say totalitarian US rule? Don’t take it personal. It’s just because in my expeirence the US treats everyone as an enemy who disagrees with it’s lies and desire for global supremacy, which Americans call, correct me if I’m wrong, their exceptionalism by the grace of god.
    “”the desire of the US ambassador in Germany to have US nukes in Germany” You do know I hope that an ambassador these days is just a messenger? He doesn’t set policy about anything except hours in the lujch room.”
    Of course, I do. But it doesn’t make the situation any better. It just means that it is official US government policy that Germans shall endure US nukes against German wishes, because if Germans could get rid of them, the Turks may want to do the same.
    “Which wars of aggression?”
    Just take the US-led wars on Yugoslavia and Iraq as latest examples of US wars of aggression. But, of course, the undeclared terror wars like the unconventional war on Syria fits in a similar category.
    “You sre an enemy of the United States.”
    See my remark above why I think the US rule is totalitarian. It’s because the US usually declares anyone an enemy who has thoughts not liked by the US.
    “Do you still think of yourself asa Marxist-Leninist?”
    I never was. I think the core of Marxism-Leninism, the economic model, is stupid and doesn’t work out well. I think the pragmatic economic model introduced by Deng Xiaoping in China are much more sensible than Marxism-Leninism.

  107. turcopolier says:

    I am sometimes accused of maintaining an “echo-chamber” on SST and to refute that I will keep you here as an extreme example of an anti-American German. Somehow, I think that like b you are still angry over German defeat in WW2. I am curious as to how the US causes the German government to keep insisting that US forces and nukes should remain in Germany. BTW, are you a danger to Americans in Germany? pl

  108. Fred says:

    I get the distinction well. Erdogan is at 60,000 arrested and/or fired from government employment and you are at “a number of suspects” arrested.

  109. Fred says:

    When he’s out of jail those one can not defend oneself against will be back to ensure he knows how to kneel properly. And this is the country that once fought the USSR to a standstill.

  110. Fred says:

    FB Ali,
    Just what type of citizenship did they have?

  111. bth says:

    Well good to know where you are coming from.
    Does someone assign you a handle for the blog or do you pick from a list?

  112. SmoothieX12 says:

    It will take some time, inevitably. But every time I am asked where the root of the answers for many things which are happening today in the world, my answer is always the same–look at the battlefields of WW II. Plutarch stated that it takes a historian 50 years to describe the war more or less correctly, as strange as it may sound, it took more than 50 years for real history to begin to surface. Who would think–in the era of electronic media. On the same note, each time I hear that USSR and USA didn’t go to war in post WW II period because of “democracy” and crap like that, I always laugh–it was generation of both US and especially Soviet politicians who were WW II veterans who knew what a horror this war could be. Ike, sure as hell, knew it and so did George Marshall–it was this generation of veterans, not some political BS system which prevented it-in general, more or less responsible people. Today, on US side we have a generation of people whose only war experience are CNN reports or plain simple nut jobs like Cotton who thinks that his couple of tours in Iraq (or wherever) make him authority on starting WW III. Sadly, we don’t get Ikes or George Marshalls anymore, albeit I always liked gruff tough SOB Sir Mike Jackson–a real deal. Come to think about it–late Norm Shwazkopf was a real deal guy too.

  113. turcopolier says:

    I agree with all of that except the part about Schwartzkopf who was a vain, selfish man of no real talent. Quoting myself rom a comment I made in December, 2012 one occasion of his death. I was responding to someone who had worked for me at the time of my struggle with Fat Norman’s staff.
    “- He went to CENTCOM to shut the place down after the collapse of the USSR. His pals saw this as a way to get him a fourth star.
    – DIA provided a study of how Iraq could invade Kuwait easily. NS then began doing contingency planning in the hope that a JCS approved plan might keep his command in existence
    – DIA supported that but we would not accept the unrealistic assumptions having to do with warning times and movement times on both sides that he wanted in the plan as a convenience to him. Without the warning time in the plan that he wanted he could not get his “deterrent force” in place before the Iraqis could attack Kuwait in force. Plans exist within the universe created by their assumptions. DIA knew a great deal about Iraq’s forces in the aftermath of the IR/IZ War. We were sure that a realistic deployment time for the Iraqis into their assembly areas would be 7 days. NS wanted 21 days. He could not get the plan approved if we would not sign off on it. I offered CENTCOM ten days. You all jumped all over me for that. I deserved it. In the event the Iraqis deployed in a week.
    – NS wanted to attack Iraqi forces frontally with his half a million men. Powell disapproved that and the Jedi Knights were brought in to write the plan for envelopment that was used. NS had nothing to do with writing the plan.
    – He would not allow us to deploy HUMINT or SOF assets into Iraqi held territory before Desert Saber started. he said that they might be captured and that would be embarrassing.
    – DIA supported NS’s incompetent CENTCOM intelligence staff with 2,000 people for eight months. 600 were deployed to Riyadh to do the work for his people. Jim Ritchie never got the credit for running that. C-130s flew continuously to SA carrying all the work DIA did for him. Many phone lines were kept open for all that time so that a continuous support was offered. NS’s gratitude to DIA for all the agency did for him was expressed in congressional hearings in which he bitched about not having had perfect knowledge of the enemy. What a clown!
    – His behavior with regard to his security in theater was ludicrous. I traveled to Riyadh several times with groups of US senators. His PSD wore civilian clothes and followed us around his headquarters in MODA while pointing their damned sub-machine guns at members of the senate. I was not polite to the goons.
    – in the immediate aftermath of the war and before he retired he got himself a personal “agent” and started telling the rest of DoD that we should talk to his agent if we wanted an appointment. He was the first post-modern general.
    Everyone can spare me the BS about what a great commander he was. pl”

  114. aleksandar says:

    I agree.
    And more:
    “Russia will never again fight a war on its own territory!”
    Sergey Karaganov, a personal advisor to President Vladimir Putin.

  115. aleksandar says:

    Sir, maybe they knew about ” Operation Unthinkable”.

  116. turcopolier says:

    aleksander Surely you know the difference between a planning exercise and an intention to attack. Surely? pl

  117. Lurker says:

    I have a different take. Erdogan is not the neo-Otoman Sultan that the MSM tries to portray. It was Davotuglu , his former PM who is the neo-Otomanist and CIA plant. Check it out. He wrote a piece on Osman. Erdogan is conservative and his beef like that of the secular Kemalist generals is against NATO helping the kurds establish a separate entity or country. To sign up on this is is treason. So they did a U turn towards Russia, Syria, Iran and Asia. Erdogan is a big conservative and small islamist. That is why the secular Kemalist sided with him in this coup If he had been the islamist bogey man that the Western MSM tries unsuccessfully to demonize him with, the secular Kemalist Army generals would have turned against him. But they didn’t. They actually supported him with nuclear blackmail against NATO’s Air Force at Incirlik.
    The man that wants to carve up a pan-islamic Turkic Empire is holed up in Pennsylvania. He is protected and perhaps funded by the CIA and the klintonistas at State Department. His name is Fethullah Gulen think of him as a contemporary Genghis Khan. The reason why the Deep State of Pennsylvania Avenue and Wall Street wants him is because he wants to carve up all of the Asian Turkic states off from Russia and China. Consider the resources and power of all of Turkey, Khazastan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Ingushetia, Chechnya, etc. into a renewed Muslim Turkic Empire. If you are looking for a quasi religious figure, then Fethullah Gulen is your anti-christ man. Divide and conquer is the idea.

  118. Thomas says:

    I am using my first name.

  119. Bandolero says:

    “Somehow, I think that like b you are still angry over German defeat in WW2.”
    Not at all. As I write already I see the past as the past and am not angry for the past. And if I had anything where I could be a bit angry about the US if I would look in the past, then it would certainly not the Nazi defeat in WWII, but the complex of rather positive US-relations with Hitler, probably best known to the wider english-languaged public due to the books of Antony C. Sutton, like this one:
    Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler
    “I am curious as to how the US causes the German government to keep insisting that US forces and nukes should remain in Germany.”
    In German coalition negotiations with Merkel in the fall of 2009, Westerwelle wanted to write into the coalition agreement that Germany should ask or demand from the US to take back their nukes from Germany. The military agreed that they served no purpose. But German polititians close to the US informed the US embassy, which promptly ordered Merkel and Westerwelle not to make a demand to take back the US nukes in Germany. The US ambassador didn’t challenge the evalution that the US nukes in Germany served no sensible military purpose, but argued that Germany has to keep the US nukes, because if Germany would ask the US to take back their nukes other nations having unpopular US nukes (Turkey being obviously the prime case) might follow and the US didn’t want that happen. It came all to light only when wikileaks published the leaked diplomatic cables in fall 2010.
    “BTW, are you a danger to Americans in Germany?”
    That sounds like a crazy idea to me. If I liked violence, I most likely would like the US more than I do. But I don’t like violence, that’s what my objections to global US war policy are all about.

  120. turcopolier says:

    “the US embassy, which promptly ordered Merkel and Westerwelle not to make a demand to take back the US nukes in Germany.” Prove that! Understand that since the fall of the USSR I am and have been in favor of US withdrawal of all forces from Europe but to think that somehow the US controls the German government is, in my opinion, paranoid fantasy. pl

  121. Sam Peralta says:

    Wow! You are one resentful guy and a good reason why the US should leave. Don’t call us when you blow up Europe again!

  122. Bandolero says:

    “”the US embassy, which promptly ordered Merkel and Westerwelle not to make a demand to take back the US nukes in Germany.” Prove that!”
    See US cable 09BERLIN1433_a from 2009 November 12, 17:43, paragraph 8:
    “… Gordon noted that it was important to think through all the potential consequences of the German proposal before going forward. For example, a withdrawal of nuclear weapons from Germany and perhaps from Belgium and the Netherlands could make it very difficult politically for Turkey to maintain its own stockpile, even though it was still convinced of the need to do so.”
    That argument was discussed at length on German TV. Of course, Merkel & Westerwelle complied, Merkel even making that her own position then. Tenor: the US demanded Germany to keep the US nukes for not inspiring the Turks to demand the removal of unpopular US nukes from Turkey, and Germany had to comply.
    “to think that somehow the US controls the German government is, in my opinion, paranoid fantasy”
    A couple of years ago, after the fall of the war, when people wanted to come clean about that, there was a short documentary based on now open acrhive records about US/CIA influence in Germany on German TV:
    That was about the cold war, but, of course, there happened never anything to change that.
    Of course, the mass media in Western Germany play a crucial role. As we all know they were built (in breach of US agreements with the Soviet Union) by the US military as licensed press and public broadcasting having “Germans trusted by the US” operating them, and later the supervision of the German mass media became the job of the CIA.
    And, of course, in the post cold war era there was a propaganda shift back from the CIA to the military, so now NATO-run US-led networks dominate the German media regarding security policy.
    As we all know how Gerhard Schröder’s Chancellorship was destroyed by the “trans-atlantic” German media after he decided not take part in the US-led war of aggression against Iraq, hardly any politician comes out in the open defying any “wishes” – I think orders would be a more honest term – from the United States.
    Schröder’s way from being a reliable vassal of the US (even going great lengths to participate in the US-led illegal bombing of Belgrade) and then being so annoyed by US designs to take him down for not being deemed reliable enough that he went straight to become an ally of Putin (and a chairman of the board with a Gazprom subsidiary) may well be a good analogy to Erdogan and Turkey today.
    I do think that Turkey’s Erdogan in the light of the recent coup attempt may well follow Schröders way and go it all the way to become an ally of Putin.

  123. turcopolier says:

    “Gordon noted that it was important to think through all the potential consequences of the German proposal before going forward.” You don’t understand that thinking through a proposition is not an “order” to the German Government? I had no idea you Germans are so weak willed. If your government wants our forces and weapons out of your country, let them ask! They never have. Instead they ask us not to leave. pl

  124. Bandolero says:

    “You don’t understand that thinking through a proposition is not an “order” to the German Government?”
    Yes, of course. The US voicing an opinion after “thinking it through” is not an order, but just an opinion, though an opinion no top German politician can ignore, like in “offer you can’t refuse.”
    Politicians know how the chancellorship of Schröder was destroyed after he refused to take part in the US-led war on Iraq. And some other also noted how Westerwelle’s career ended on next occasion after he refused to take part in the US-led war on Libya.
    “If your government wants our forces and weapons out of your country, let them ask!”
    I personally know that some top German politicians would love to that, but it’s deemed political suicide, so they don’t.
    With the US nukes in Germany it’s a bit different, though. They are so deeply unpopular in Germany that Westerwelle thought he could pull it off. However, he was proven wrong when his party FDP was thrown out of parliament at next occasion. A sense of irony may come from the fact that this cleared the way for the AfD to come into being.

  125. rkka says:

    A company I used to work for interviewed Soviet emigres who had served on the Soviet general staff. They painted a picture of Brezhnev’s conduct during exercises, his somber demeanor through the whole thing, his seeking repeated assurance that “…this isn’t actually connected to anything, is it?”, stuff like that. He was a Lt. Colonel when the war started, and a 1-star general at the end, much of it spent at the front. He made his reputation as a national-level politician supervising reconstruction in Eastern Ukraine. He had seen so much of war and its aftermath as to be truly traumatized, and with an iron determination that nothing of the sort ever happen again. In many ways he was a vain man (Order of Victory?? That car collection??), but his determination to enforce the peace of Europe was genuine.

  126. turcopolier says:

    “He was a Lt. Colonel when the war started, and a 1-star general at the end” An NKVD officer? pl

  127. turcopolier says:

    “Politicians know how the chancellorship of Schröder was destroyed after he refused to take part in the US-led war on Iraq.” How does that work exactly? Does the CIA control the media in Germany? Do they subsidize political parties? Tell us. pl

  128. Colonel Lang, SmoothieX12, bandolero,
    I think ‘propaganda lies’ is an unhelpful term, which actually reflects a very common problem.
    It is very dangerous to assume that what appears an obvious – and may indeed be a completely accurate – reading of evidence is that which will be made by an adversary. It is dangerously easy to assume that claims are deliberately disingenuous, when in fact they may be made in honest error – and there are a wide range of intermediate positions.
    And it is important here to take into account entrenched ideological preconceptions, institutional vested interests, intellectual inertia – and also the influence of past traumatic experiences. It is very easy to misread evidence.
    Back in 1989, the National Defense University published the first of three volumes of what they termed the ‘Voroshilov Lectures’. In October 1981, an Afghan General Staff officer, Colonel Ghulam Dastagir Wardak, who had gone through the two-year course at the Voroshilov General Staff Academy in 1973, and subsequently sided with the Mujahedeen, arrived in the United States with transcripts of the materials.
    The volume was introduced by an analysis from Ambassador Raymond Garthoff, one of the pre-eminent American experts on Soviet military strategy. An excerpt:
    “The 1973-75 lectures clearly and flatly state that as a ‘basic principle’ that the Soviet Union will not initiate war, and this is reflected throughout in specific ways such as in stressing the need for ‘detailed study of the methods of initiation of war by the aggressor’. I do not believe that this claim of defensive purpose should be disregarded as mere propaganda, but it is also not conclusive. The lecture materials representative authoritative Soviet views at the ‘Secret’ level on military doctrine and strategy for waging a war if war should occur; they are simply not a source for evaluating Soviet State policy decisions on war and peace, defensive or offensive, under various political contingencies.’
    Almost thirty years earlier, in 1958, Garthoff had published a seminal strategy of ‘Soviet Strategy in the Nuclear Age’. This was written with the benefit of access to a crucial article published in the – confidential – Soviet General Staff journal ‘Military Thought’ in June 1950.
    In this, General-Mayor V. Khlopov explained that, although a future war was likely to start with all-out American nuclear attacks, this would no more ensure the American ‘imperialists’ eventual victory than the Wehrmacht’s attacks in June 1941 had ensured a German victory.
    Greater local air capabilities and ground forces capable of deploying ‘powerful offensive operations on a large scale and with a high tempo of advance’, Khlopov argued, would ensure that ‘the bridgehead on which the American militarists count to concentrate and deploy their forces for land engagements will be liquidated, and their plans for [winning’ the war will be buried with it.’
    None of this implies that the very evident ‘capabilities’ threat posed by such forces did not need countering – in relation to prudent military planning, assessments of enemy intentions are commonly only one variable, and very often hardly a decisive one.
    It is however relevant to the question of how far ‘capabilities’ can be taken as an index of ‘intentions’.
    In fact, just over two years later, in September 1952, during his brief period as Ambassador to Moscow in the last days of Stalin’s rule, George Kennan would write a long despatch to Acheson, in which he specifically argued that, precisely because the Soviets had never had any intention of further military expansion into Europe, they had radically misinterpreted Western policy.
    In this despatch – reproduced at the end of the second volume of his memoirs – Kennan spoke of a ‘cosmic misunderstanding’ among the Cold War antagonists about the significance of each other’s military preparations. Unreal Western and Soviet perceptions of a military ‘intentions threat’ were feeding off each other.
    (See .)
    I recently came across an interesting piece by one Matthew Evangelista, applying a notion called ‘process tracing’ – which actually isn’t at all silly, despite the jargon – to Gorbachev’s decision to liquidate the traditional Soviet Cold War posture.
    It was of particular interest to me, because I have rather vivid memories of interviewing some of the people he mentions at the time.
    (See,-Process-Tracing.pdf .)
    I also recently came across an interesting discussion which appeared last month on the site of the Belfer Center at Harvard of ‘The German Blitzkrieg Against the USSR, 1941’, by one of the leading ‘new thinkers’ whom we interviewed, Andrei Kokoshin.
    (See .)
    In it, he refers to General-Mayor Valentin Larionov, whom we also interviewed, and General-Mayor Aleksandr Svechin, the Tsarist ‘genshtabist’ who was Tukhachevsky’s great antagonist in the arguments of the ‘Twenties – about whom Larionov talked to us.
    In disseminating key ideas of the ‘new thinking’, Kokoshin and Larionov had been close collaborators.
    It was already apparent to me back in 1989 that there was a complex generational relationship, but this became clearer to me later. As a 17-year-old, wounded at Kursk, Larionov had participated in one of the meetings with American forces in Germany in 1945. He had subsequently become one of the pre-eminent Soviet nuclear strategists, but had later become aware that things had gone very badly wrong.
    By contrast, Kokoshin, born in 1946, belonged to a younger generation of ‘security studies’ experts, one of whose defining characteristics was that they were fluent in Western languages and very familiar with the Western ‘security studies’ literature.
    And they were people for whom the gap between the anticipations of Marxism-Leninism and the realities of the world of the ‘Eighties was all too glaringly apparent.
    One ironic result was a curious coming together of groups in the West and the East who wanted to put an end to the Cold War, at the heart of which was the ‘Palme Commission’ and interchanges between different figures interested in notions of ‘non-provocative defence’, and suchlike matter.
    So key ideas which would underpin Gorbachev’s ‘new thinking’ were set out by Colonel Viktor Girshfeld, a retired Red Army officer, then working at the Institute for World Economy and International Relations, in interviews with Stephen Shenfield, then at the Centre for Russian and Eastern European Studies in Birmingham, in 1983-4.
    At the same time, Larionov and some others in the Soviet military were going back to the ideas of Svechin. The greatest Russian interpreter of Clausewitz, he had picked up that strand in the master’s ideas which insisted that both ‘offensive’ and ‘defensive’ elements have a proper place in strategy, and it is crucial to grasp what is appropriate at a particular time.
    Involved here were arguments about how far the security problems of the Soviet Union had been self-generated.
    As Evangelista brings out, the decision to as it were ‘run with’ the approach taken by Kokoshin, Larionov, and others like them was essentially a personal decision by Gorbachev. This involved bringing large elements of the military, as it were, to heel.
    Ironically, the role of Svechin in this was rather complex, and ambiguous. Part of the points of his warnings and recommendations in the interwar period had been to argue that an initial defensive posture would be far more appropriate, if the Soviet Union was attacked, than to attempt an all-out offensive at the outset.
    This was of course quite consistent with the suggestion that, once ‘attrition’ had exhausted the enemy, one should go on to the offensive (as Russia had done against Napoleon after 1812.)
    This was the kind of revision which much of the military establishment wanted to see, which was why they did what they could to subvert Gorbachev’s plans for radical arms reductions. What Kokoshin and Larionov wanted was the liquidation of the whole conception of an offensive westwards. And that was what Gorbachev went for.
    And this was not essentially because of the Reagan-era military build-up, the collapse in oil prices, Afghanistan, etc etc. It is absolutely clear from the documented record that he swallowed the ‘common security’ agenda hook, line and sinker.
    A key paragraph from Evangelista’s account:
    ‘Anatolii Cherniaev, Gorbachev’s main foreign policy aide, took Reagan’s profession of the West’s goodwill to heart more than anyone. In May 1990, he reassured Gorbachev that it would be safe to withdraw Soviet forces from Europe, for “no one will attack us even if we disarm totally.”’

  129. turcopolier says:

    David Habakkuk
    “I think ‘propaganda lies’ is an unhelpful term. I agree. I was quoting Bandolero. pl

  130. Colonel Lang,
    I was very well aware of that.
    What makes it really dangerous, in my view, is that it commonly indicates an implicit assumption that everyone really sees things the same way as one does.
    What makes this all the more dangerous is that the ‘blind man’s buff’ element in human relations does not arise, as it were, simply because we are all nice chaps and if we talked to each other more there would be no problem.
    While Evelyn Waugh is a writer about whom I have mixed feelings, I think the ‘pageant of birth control’ from ‘Black Mischief’ makes a fundamental point about the world.
    (See .)

  131. SmoothieX12 says:

    Karaganov merely reiterated a foundation of Russia’s post-WW II Military Doctrines. I read his interview you reference–yes, this is what dominates Russia’s psyche for the last 70 years. Karaganov is smug and arrogant but I have to admit–he nailed it.

  132. Bandolero says:

    “How does that work exactly?”
    Quite simply. After Schroeder declined to take part in the war on Iraq and won the German election 2002 based on this due to a narrow victory of Strobele in Berlin’s Kreuzberg district, almost all German media went in attack mode against Schroeder and his government for anything they did – except keeping Germany out of the US-led war on Iraq, which was a very popular position. It was stunning to see the media reversing 180 degrees on issues, even inviting the very left, just to get all their titles and pages full with negative reporting on Schroeder. In addition to that US officials declared that Germany would be punished economically for siding with France and not taking part in the war. You may remember, it was the time were even “French fries” were suddenly called “freedom fries” in the US.
    And the negative campaign against Schroeder worked out. The polls went south and Schroeder’s party (SPD) lost one state election after the other, which is why Schroeder called snap elections in 2005, which was won by Merkel’s CDU/CSU and brought a grand coalition between CDU/CSU and the SPD. Ironically, though, in a strategic way the opposite than the desired result was reached. Schroeder became the first German chancellor working for Moscow after his term ended – where he managed to successfully create the North Stream gas pipeline – and the German industry hit a gold mine when they went big into China early on, because in the US they feared punishment for German’s non-participation in the war on Iraq.
    “Does the CIA control the media in Germany?”
    I don’t know, but I think it’s likely that the manufacturing of the complete dominance of US talking points in German media – which can easily be observed – is a bit more complex in the largely privitized world of think tanks and global corporations nowadays. See the link I posted in a comment above for hundreds of pages with details about this in German language, if you like. I think in this regard similar fashonable management trends apply for Germany as for the US itself, where I believe the CIA told the truth that it stopped their “Operation Mockingbird” – but regarding some topics like global security, war propaganda and Israel it looks like that, if it’s not directed, than at least some kind of “group think” rules the bulk of the US mass media.
    However, in Germany, one can know a bit on the past of the mass media and that makes educated guess possible on the situation today. So, the basic thing to know there is that as the allies conquered Germany the creation of a completely new media landscape to replace Goebbels propaganda apparatus was a major task for the allies. German media historians note that the post-WWII Western German media landscape is based on US (and some British) plannings of the Psychological Warfare Division of the SHAEF beginning January 1944. As the western Allies conquered Germany they first prohibited all German media publications to destroy Goebbels propaganda apparatus, and then they gave licenses to people trusted by them to publish German media. As the US was the dominant allied power in the western zones, naturally most of these “trusted people” were close to the US or at least published what the US wanted them to publish, though the US also took prominent “converted” people from the Nazi’s propaganda machine to work for them after the war.
    These “trusted people” licensed back then directly after WWII by the US and British forces and their heirs are still the very few families (about a dozen families), who own the bulk of the German media. Whether these about a dozen families had or still have any secret formal contract with the CIA or another US government agency to make sure they follow the US PR lines I don’t know. Maybe, maybe not, but in the end it’s not important. What counts is the result. And the result is that anybody who wants to be published in the German media needed to have a strong pro-US position, and later was a strong pro-Israel position also needed. The method of control is simple and comes from the owner families: who doesn’t follow the US political line doesn’t get a job in the German media oligopol. From the cold war era it is also known nowadays that the CIA had lot’s of agents in German media back then, and not only media, but they had a big operation running to influence and control which had to do with publishing, culture and opinion influencing, like unions, parties, education, social clubs and so on.
    The one exception from the rule in German media, as I see it, was Burda, where Jürgen Todenhöfer, who is now known as a peace activist, was a top manager for 20 years. Burda grew from the small French occupied zone, so it was licensed by France, and mostly follows the French line. The Soviets had their influence in eastern zone and GDR media, which they took over after the US broke their agreements with the Soviets to create a common German media landscape managed by all allies together, but these media were eradicated in the German reunification 1990, except one small paper selling about 10.000 copies daily, the Junge Welt.
    “Do they subsidize political parties?”
    Well, at least they did finance politicians to get control of all parties. In the video I linked in the comment above, hear CIA agent Tom Braden say, the CIA gave any German polititian money whenever he said he needed it to fight against communism. That worked out well. First the CIA took over the SPD and the unions in this way and made them accept founding the Bundeswehr and joining the NATO. A few decades later the greens were founded as a US-critical peace party, but then they were influenced to become a staunch pro-NATO, pro-US war party, and now a similar process of being put on a pro-US-line is well under way for the left party.
    From what I see, this work is nowadays likely not done by CIA money, but has been privatized and is done now by selective media support, think tanks and financing and organizational support from foundations. But, of course, I wouldn’t rule out direct CIA hands in that process, neither. It’s a well establihed fact, that during the cold war the CIA had their hands in almost everything of importance in Western Germany – of course all in the name of the higher good of fighting against the evil of communism. However, after the end of the cold war and the demise of communism in eastern Europe, there was never anything which would have indicated that the CIA ended their massive use of agents of influence in Germany accordingly.

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