Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

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Carolina
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Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Carolina » Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:00 am


Kilkis
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jul 16, 2016 12:05 pm

People should be aware that military intervention in government is not that unusual in Turkey. It tends to occur about every ten years. There were outright coups d'état in 1960, 1971 and 1980. There was a bit of a quiet period through the early 90s but it then engineered the removal of an Islamist prime minister in 1997 and was outspoken against Islamist political groups, including banning some, in the 2007 election.

During the period of the Ottoman Empire Turkey was an Islamic state. After the fall of the empire Kemal Ataturk set about transforming Turkey into a secular state. The military see themselves as the guardian of Kemalism. Turkey effectively functions with a veneer of democracy overlaid on strong military control. It is not uncommon for a senior government figure to make some announcement or other and then, a couple of days later, to take the exact opposite position after a colonel has had a quiet word in his ear.

Erdogan is doing two things that are against the interests of the military. Firstly he is trying to move Turkey back to being an Islamic state. Secondly he is trying to acquire more powers for the presidential position. The USA has a president as head of state who has considerable executive powers. Greece has a president as head of state who is largely titular with virtually no executive powers. Turkey lies somewhere between these extremes. The president is supposed to be titular but also has significant reserve powers. Erdogan would like to move towards the USA system or possibly the Russian system, where the president has virtually absolute power in reality despite what the constitution says.

It looks like the coup failed at least in part because of social media. The organisers of the coup followed the "Making a Successful Coup" recipe book but times have changed. Once upon a time controlling the state radio and TV broadcasters would have ensured that the people only received the information the organisers wanted them to receive. Today to achieve the same effect they would need to shut down a raft of private broadcasters, the whole Internet nationwide and every mobile service provider. I have a strong suspicion that if they did that they would also greatly disrupt their own command and control activity.

It's hard being a recalcitrant general in today's world. You have to have sympathy for them.

Warwick

scooby

Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby scooby » Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:38 pm

Apparently a Turkish military helicopter has landed in northern Greece and they are asking for asylum, can't see that happening...

peebee
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby peebee » Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:46 pm

scooby wrote:Apparently a Turkish military helicopter has landed in northern Greece and they are asking for asylum, can't see that happening...

Hey - free helicopter :lol:

Maud
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Maud » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:04 pm

For Turkey's sake, Erdoğan should resist desire for revenge
http://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/j ... SApp_Other

A good article.

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Carolina » Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:51 pm

Wishful thinking on the Guardian's part. Erdogan is already swinging for his revenge and there are calls to bring back the death penalty in Turkey.

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jul 16, 2016 4:12 pm

Turkey is a signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights, ECHR, including Protocol 13 which provides for the complete abolition of the death penalty. If it re-introduces the death penalty then it will be in breach of that convention. It is a condition of being a member of the European Union or being a candidate country that the country is a signatory of the ECHR. As far as I can see, if Turkey no longer conformed to the ECHR then it could no longer be a candidate country for EU membership. It would also then be illegal for Greece to extradite the military personnel that have claimed asylum.

Warwick

scooby

Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby scooby » Sat Jul 16, 2016 5:39 pm

Kilkis wrote:Turkey is a signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights, ECHR, including Protocol 13 which provides for the complete abolition of the death penalty. If it re-introduces the death penalty then it will be in breach of that convention. It is a condition of being a member of the European Union or being a candidate country that the country is a signatory of the ECHR. As far as I can see, if Turkey no longer conformed to the ECHR then it could no longer be a candidate country for EU membership. It would also then be illegal for Greece to extradite the military personnel that have claimed asylum.

Warwick
They are not getting in the EU club for a long time yet so maybe they will bring the death penalty back.

Kilkis
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Kilkis » Sat Jul 16, 2016 6:06 pm

True but they get some benefits from being a candidate country. As far as I can see if they don't abide by the ECHR rules then they can no longer be a candidate country and so would lose those benefits.

It's always a difficult call with the EU. Do geopolitics trump EU rules or do the EU rules trump the geopolitics. In the case of the UK it would be a no brainer. Unless they were constrained by the EU, geopolitics would trump any rules every time.

Warwick

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Kilkis » Sun Jul 17, 2016 10:05 am

One issue they were discussing on Sky News this morning was the probability that Erdogan would use the coup as an opportunity to remove many more of those that oppose him, whether they were involved in the coup or not. He will simply accuse them of being part of the plot and have them arrested. If he removes enough of those who oppose him there will be nobody left to challenge whether the arrests are genuine or trumped up. Once he has removed them he enhances his chances of awarding more presidential powers to himself. Not particularly good for stability in the region.

Warwick

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby filippos » Sun Jul 17, 2016 12:43 pm

Interesting developments in Turkey.

We visited Istanbul a couple of years ago and one day happened to be strolling round a municipal park and came across a large bronze of Attaturk. I started taking photos of it and while I did so a group of young (early 30's I estimated) Turks gathered around. As I finished clicking one of them asked me if I knew who the statue represented and his importance to Turkey. "Yes," I said, "Attaturk, the founder of modern Turkey." The group's response was smiles all round and comment that their country needed to find another Attaturk and get rid of Erdogan.

At the time I felt they wouldn't have expressed that opinion so openly had we not been so obviously English.

paul g
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby paul g » Sun Jul 17, 2016 6:11 pm

I wonder what the Greek generals thought of it all.

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby YoMo2 » Sun Jul 17, 2016 9:27 pm

Kilkis wrote:One issue they were discussing on Sky News this morning was the probability that Erdogan would use the coup as an opportunity to remove many more of those that oppose him, whether they were involved in the coup or not. He will simply accuse them of being part of the plot and have them arrested. If he removes enough of those who oppose him there will be nobody left to challenge whether the arrests are genuine or trumped up. Once he has removed them he enhances his chances of awarding more presidential powers to himself. Not particularly good for stability in the region.

Warwick


No doubt about it. A golden opportunity for the fascist tin-pot dictator. One might almost think the coup was intended for that reason..........

Andrew

Kilkis
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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Kilkis » Sun Jul 17, 2016 11:10 pm

paul g wrote:I wonder what the Greek generals thought of it all.


Possibly initially, "Why didn't we think of that?" followed later in the night by, "I'm glad we didn't think of that!"

Being more serious, I haven't met many and I can't claim to know any of them well but all the Greek generals I have met were highly intelligent and well educated, many to PhD level. I would be amazed if they would consider a coup. Usually it is more junior officers that instigate this type of action. The Greek Junta for example were largely Colonels. The most senior one I met was Dimitrios Skarvelis who was Chief of staff of all Greek forces for a time in 1993, although he had retired when I knew him. He was a complete gentleman and very highly respected both inside and outside the military. He regularly contributed articles to several Greek newspapers on military matters and associated political issues. Most of the others were at Brigadier level and were all very different from the image of some devious plotting maniac that conspiracy theorists tend to imagine.

Warwick

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Re: Turkey coup attempt - Greece holds meeting

Postby Phaedra » Sun Jul 17, 2016 11:43 pm

YoMo2 wrote:
No doubt about it. A golden opportunity for the fascist tin-pot dictator. One might almost think the coup was intended for that reason..........

Andrew


Exactly what I was thinking Andrew............


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