Turkey History - PKK

Turkey History – PKK

Asia Europe

According to a2zdirectory, the cyber-coup, however a notable evolution compared to the three bloody coups that took place in the past (1960, 1971, 1980) and the so-called ‘white’ (bloodless) one in 1997, seemed successful. Gul could not find the necessary votes in the Assembly for his formal election and the Social Democratic opposition close to the officials could stop the rest of the process, triggering an institutional crisis that led to the decision to call early general elections in July. The period of vacatio the presidency would have been covered by Sezer himself, so back in office to the relief of the military and the left. But in the bitter confrontation, a new chapter soon opened for the prompt retaliation of Erdogan, who immediately relaunched the blockade inflicted on his candidate with the proposal for the direct election of the head of state by the people: a card to be played first or then in a watershed referendum, which could prove more than ever a decisive face to face between civil and Islamic society expressed by the party in power. The large majority obtained by the AKP made it possible to resolve the conflict on August 28, when Gul was elected to the highest institutional office, collecting 339 votes out of 550 deputies in the third ballot. Lights and shadows are therefore reflected in the work of the generals. An armed force that is not a normal army, as in any other part of the world, but which is considered the constituent element of the country, after having fought to found in 1923 the Republic born from the ashes of the Ottoman Empire. It has always been considered a bulwark against the powerful Islamic masses and organizations considered terrorist such as the PKK, even at the cost of incurring sensational incidents, such as the one that occurred in November 2005 in the Kurdish city of Semdinli, when it was discovered that an attack against a activist library had been completed by plainclothes soldiers, unearthed by citizens immediately after the action.

With 600,000 men, 35,000 of whom are officers of the highest level and preparation, as a power second in NATO only to the United States Army, the Turkish military is present in the republican institutions within the National Security Council. a sort of supra-institutional government in which the five commanders of the Armed Forces sit in front of the five most important ministers (the Chief of Staff, his deputy, the land, ship and sky commanders), coordinating the decisions and directing the work of the head of the executive and of the heads of Foreign, Interior, Defense, Economy. Equipped with an autonomous financial force, constituted by the Oyak, the Solidarity and Aid Fund for the military, born in 1961 (after the first coup) and transformed into a real holding (present in the automotive, food, insurance and construction sectors, just to name a few) with a turnover of 6 billion euros in 2005, the Armed Forces also enjoy widespread national support (they are many hospitals and schools). All polls, even after the July vote and the substantial defeat of the military, continue to consider the military as the most respected institution in the country, with as much as 85% of favors.

The current number one, General Yashar Buyukanit, a ‘hawk’ several times in sharp contrast with Erdogan, has often threatened intervention in Northern Iraq, mobilizing border troops to hunt for the shelters of the PKK guerrillas, in the a twenty-year war that pits the Turkish army against Ocalan’s loyalists not only in the Anatolian South-East, but also across the border. Some intellectuals argue that the conflict would even be kept alive to allow the officers visibility and power. For example, he denounced Alper Gormus, editor of the weekly Nokta closed in April 2007 after having published the evidence of a coup project against Erdogan present in the diary of a senior naval officer: “They are always the ones who dictate the guidelines: they do it in the Cyprus question, or as regards the problem Kurdish. They are the puppeteer behind article 301 of the penal code that punishes “anyone who offends the Turkish identity” with jail, as happened to so many writers, from Orhan Pamuk to Elif Shafak. To stay in power, they build fears and manipulate people. Already, Turkey bases its foundations on two pillars: the fear of Islamism and the division of the country. And their strength rests on these fears. As children at school they tell us: we are surrounded by enemies! And this works ».

According to other observers, such as Zeyno Baran, a researcher and expert on Turkish issues at the Hudson Institute in Washington, the responsibility, however, lies with the Turks themselves, too compliant with the generals: “Instead of making sure that the secular system is preserved from the democratic process – he explains the scholar – people in the past have often voted irresponsibly, thinking that, in the meantime, if something wrong happened the generals would fix it. ” That of the military as a true defender of democracy is an anomaly in certain respects historically understandable, but difficult to digest at any latitude, especially in a European country. Which to some extent justifies the perplexities of the European Union.

Turkey History - PKK