Erdogan Incites Anger Against US and NATO Allies Over Coup Response

Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan May 28, 2010From Tulay Karadeniz and Humeyra Pamuk, Reuters:  President Tayyip Erdogan condemned Western countries on Friday [July 29]  for failing to show solidarity with Turkey over the recent failed coup, saying those who worried over the fate of coup supporters instead of Turkish democracy could not be friends of Ankara.

Erdogan also rejected Western criticism of purges under way in Turkey’s military and other state institutions which saw more than 60,000 people detained, removed or suspended over suspected links with the coup attempt, suggesting some in the United States were on the side of the plotters.

“The attitude of many countries and their officials over the coup attempt in Turkey is shameful in the name of democracy,” Erdogan told hundreds of supporters at the presidential palace in the Turkish capital.

Any country and any leader who does not worry about the life of Turkish people and our democracy as much as they worry about the fate of coupists are not our friends,” said Erdogan, who narrowly escaped capture and perhaps death on the night of the coup….

The head of U.S. Central Command, General Joseph Votel, said he believed some of the military figures whom the United States had worked with were in jail. Votel’s comments drew condemnation from Erdogan.

“Instead of thanking this country which repelled a coup attempt, you take the side of the coup plotters. The putschist is in your country already,” Erdogan said, referring to Gulen, who denied any involvement in the coup attempt.

From Ece Toksabay and Nick Tattersall, Reuters [August 2]:  “I’m calling on the United States: what kind of strategic partners are we, that you can still host someone whose extradition I have asked for?” Erdogan said in a speech to local representatives of multinational firms operating in Turkey.

“This coup attempt has actors inside Turkey, but its script was written outside. Unfortunately the West is supporting terrorism and stands by coup plotters,” he said in comments which were met with applause, and broadcast live….

Erdogan has issued two decrees dismissing around 3,000 members of NATO’s second-biggest armed forces since the coup, including more than 40 percent of generals. He has also shut down military high schools and brought force commanders under tighter government control….

Erdogan also pledged to strengthen Turkey’s intelligence agencies and flush out the influence of Gulen, whose grip on the security apparatus he blamed for the lack of intelligence in the run-up to the coup. The MIT intelligence agency has already suspended 100 staff and Erdogan has suggested bringing it under the control of the presidency.

From Suzan Fraser and Elana Becatoros, AP:  A Turkish lawyer has filed a criminal complaint against two top U.S. generals, accusing them of involvement in the July 15 coup attempt by members of the Turkish military.

The complaint, which has to be accepted by Turkish prosecutors before any action is taken, was filed Tuesday and names Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff; Gen. Joseph Votel, the top U.S. commander for the Middle East, and U.S. National Intelligence Director James Clapper. It alleges that the American officials conspired with a faction of the Turkish military at Turkey’s Incirlik Air Base, a key hub for U.S. military air operations against the Islamic State group in nearby Iraq and Syria….

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has launched a widespread crackdown that has included the arrest of top Turkish military officials and thousands of civilians. He recently told Votel to “know your place” after Votel expressed concern that the post-coup crackdown may affect the fight against ISIS.

Image: Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan May 28, 2010 (photo: UNAOC)