How To Stage A Successful Coup

The recent coup attempt several days ago in Turkey failed for several reasons. Chief among them were the inability of the coup plotters to secure the support of key military figures, as well as their failure to arrest the head of state himself.

But coups have succeeded in the Middle East many times before, and it may be useful for us, as students of history, to observe the differences between successful and unsuccessful coups. Almost exactly 58 years ago (July 14, 1958) the monarchy in Baghdad was overthrown in a coup that had significant repercussions for Iraq’s future. Readers may not be familiar with the details, so we will review them here.

Iraq in 1958 was ruled nominally by a Hashemite monarchy. Its face to the world was Nuri Said, a British-backed politician who served eight terms as Prime Minister. As a practical matter, the country was a protectorate of Britain. But times were changing. Local nationalisms were beginning to assert themselves in the region and around the world. Former colonial dependencies were no longer content to move within the orbit of their patrons.


Abd al-Karim Qasim

In Egypt, the Arab nationalist Gamal abd al-Nasser was making waves and influencing the politics of all his neighbors. Both the United States and the Soviet Union vied with each other for influence in the region. In 1955 the US formed the “Baghdad Pact,” a loose coalition of anti-communist states along the Soviet Union’s Middle Eastern flank.

Among the people, the monarchy was widely seen as corrupt, ineffective, and as a foreign tool. A small group of military leaders calling themselves the “Free Officers” decided to remove the monarchy and establish a republic. Two men were significant: Abd al-Karim Qasim and Abd al-Salam Arif.

Planning for the coup began in earnest after the revolt in Lebanon against a pro-West regime there. The general plan was for Arif to move his Nineteenth Brigade into Baghdad and occupy key points in the city; Qasim was to hold back in reserve, in case reinforcements were needed. Early in the morning of July 14, 1958, Arif moved his tank units into the city and occupied the major government buildings. He also seized the radio station and all other communication centers to prevent the “wrong” stories from getting out.

Arif also personally broadcast a communique to the nation. The gist of his message was that there would be an end to imperialism and corruption, and that Iraq would move towards a more just society were everyone had more opportunity. He also promised that there would soon be elections for a new president.

Arif sent troops to the royal palace and to the residence of Nuri Said. It is not clear what his intentions were with regard to these people; he may have wished to exile them, as Nasser in Egypt did with King Farouk. The military guard units of the king and the crown prince did not resist. They had been told by the king to stand down; he lacked the will to fight for his throne, and likely expected to be treated with respect.


Abd al-Salam Arif

If so, he was mistaken. Arif’s units dragged the royal family into the palace courtyard and shot them. Politics in Iraq have never been a gentleman’s sport.

The plotters were less successful in capturing Nuri Said. He slipped away in the confusion, and was heading for the border. Disguised in woman’s clothes, he made the mistake of stopping in a Baghdad marketplace before setting out on his journey. Someone recognized him on July 15, and he was shot; his body was quietly buried that night.

Qasim now (noon on July 14) began to move his own forces into Baghdad. At this point the plotters did not even have the support of most of the army. But their failure to rally to the side of the king meant that their passivity helped the plotters. Iraq’s most influential neighbor, Jordan, also wavered, unsure of what to do. This paralysis of action by most of the army and by key foreign players worked to the Free Officers’ advantage.

Things got uglier soon after. Arif began to encourage the public to hunt down spies and “traitors,” and this was like pouring gasoline on an active fire. All sense of decency and restraint vanished as angry mobs sought out enemies real and imagined. Some ministers hiding out in the Baghdad Hotel were lynched by mobs; Nuri’s body was dug up by zealots and mutilated, then dragged through the streets. A regent of the king, Abd al-Ilah, was murdered, dragged through the streets, and hung from a gate in the Ministry of Defense.


A curfew was soon imposed, but the damage to the new government’s public image had been done. And violence usually begets more violence. Qasim became the new prime minister and withdrew Iraq from the Baghdad Pact.

Over time, divisions within the new government would become more pronounced. Ba’athists, Iraqi nationalists, and communist-leaning figures would compete with each other for influence. Qasim and Arif would eventually become rivals; in 1963 Qasim himself was overthrown and executed in a Ba’athist coup.

It seems clear that the 1963 coup was carried out with at least some help from the CIA. The coup plotters were conveniently provided with lists of communists and leftists, a fact that made their arrests and executions that much easier. In any case, Iraq’s 1958 coup was the first in a series of coups that would not end until the advent of Saddam Hussein in 1968.

Read More: Sweden Showcases The War Of Two Nationalist Narratives

106 thoughts on “How To Stage A Successful Coup”

  1. Turkish Coup failed, most likely, because it wasn’t meant to succeed by design.

  2. I thought this article was going to be along the lines of “How to Stage a Successful Coup for Dummies.” Turned out to be a history lesson.

    1. How about this for a connect the dots:
      1. Keep the people involved to a minimum.
      2. Make sure you have control of armored and air units.
      3. Move fast and capture control of the capital and all the key government communication centers.
      4. Get your message out early.
      5. Make sure the leadership element is captured or arrested.

      1. I think in any coup attempt through the ages there’s one huge variable that’s amorphous and hard to pin down: how much support you have from the “silent majority,” whether we’re talking about the entire population or the inner circle of ministers or the armed forces. It’s a matter or being able to read the political winds and striking at the right time, assuming you’ve laid the groundwork.

        1. The vast majority of people will do nothing, regardless of who they support. Erdogan’s Facetime message might’ve been the defining edge, as it got the layman to take to the streets. The military’s only option is then to genocide civilians, and thereby lose.

        2. My mother who has lived through many coups and corrupt governments will tell you the peasant masses only care about two things, enough money to feed the family and some left over to buy a drink. In some cases just enough money for a drink will suffice.

      2. 1st step: eliminate head of state. These guys never had a chance, didnt even attempt when Erdogan was at least out of country.

  3. I said it before and will say it again, the problem with the turkey coup is getting the turkeys in to it and out of the rain. Further, the reason the coup failed was that it was foiled. Foiled coups never work. Barbed wire is much better coup material.

    1. Grandpa Confederate use to say that turkeys were so stupid they would look up when it rained and drown themselves.

      1. I saw a wild turkey once. It didn’t have the look of a particularly smart bird. That said, when brined and properly roasted it is a fine tasting one.

        1. Ive heard wild turkey tastes like ass. Edible only after injecting with many ounces of cheap beer and butter.

    2. funny that we’ve had a turkey coup straight after a chicken coup against Jeremy Corbyn in the UK (its been called that because his attempted assassination was led by a bunch of women MPs. Any more coups resonating of meat and we’ll have a full carvery

  4. Or you can be like Obama and “fundamentally transform” (isn’t that what coups do, anyway?) the nation over a period of 8 years and overthrow the Constitution. A slow motion coup so to speak. Unlike the Turkish generals, Obama had the mainstream media on his side. That’s the key.

    1. That’s the “slow” option 0bama offers for fundamental transformation.
      0bama also offers a much faster option, as seen in Libya.

  5. This was a fake coup. Erdogan’s version of a Reichstag Fire that he’s using to purge the government of anyone who opposes. He’s the Dictator of Turkey now, the Ataturk Republic is dead.
    I knew it was fishy and fake on Saturday. In a real coup:
    1. Crowds don’t stop tanks – tanks accelerate through the crunchies.
    2. Police don’t arrest squads of armed soldiers they run like hell from them or they die.
    3. The ruler being attacked doesn’t announce he’s flying into the country through hostile airspace – he flies away as fast as he can or he’s shot out of the sky.
    It was all bullshit.

    1. I agree there’s a good chance Erdogan was manipulating the situation (possibly allowed a real coup to initiate or staged the whole thing) but there’s actually some pretty nasty footage of your no. 1. “tanks accelerate through the crunchies”. Others have said that some soldiers thought it was a training exercise, but clearly those tank drivers didn’t nor presumably those soldiers trying and completely failing to take over the media stations

    2. Spot on-once I saw police having the cojones to confront the military, and the civilians stopping the soldiers in this alleged ‘coup’ attempt, it was all fairly understandable. An actual coup would’ve looked completely different.
      Probably just another Erdogan’s scheme in his quest for absolute power over an Islamic Turkey.

      1. Sometimes people who start a civil war don’t really want to kill their countrymen, they just want them to step aside. In the case of the Greek coup/Junta, I feel like the spirit of the Junta was the fathers trying to straighten out their sons, and the anarchist marxist hedonistic sons eventually won because the fathers did not have the resolve to punish the children all the way though.

    3. This is a very complex subject that the intelligent readers of this website should not dismiss so nonchalantly.
      The coup attempt, which played out like a B-action movie was a last ditch effort by the Gulenist & Nurist cabal within the military who knew that they were going to get arrested the very next day (on conspiracy charges) so they had to force their hand in a preemptive strike, at least half a day or even a few weeks earlier than the original plan (depending on various accounts) which threw off their coordination.
      Many of the officers who they thought would be sympathetic to the coup therefore either had a change of heart in the last minute, or were not convinced strongly enough that the attempt would succeed, so they alerted the intelligence officers and the president instead of carrying out the plan. When the disarray became evident in the first few hours of the attempt, several of the masterminds of the coup promptly fled the country on helicopters or u-boats, and some commandos even went into unknown hideouts in the wilderness (some of these conspirators are still at large), leaving in some cases totally inexperienced teenager conscripts with no orders inside tanks facing a mobilized angry mob and police force in the two largest cities of the country…
      The president could therefore evacuate his holiday villa just in the nick of time (30 minutes before special force commandos in 4 helicopters landed there to capture him) and switch off all the signals from the presidential plane, disguising it as just another gulfstream passenger jet passing through Turkish air space.
      However a more coordinated, professional effort could have surely taken him out that’s true. And MUCH more importantly, the only reason traitors could infiltrate so easily a very noble institution like the Turkish Military was because all the meritorious republican officers were either imprisoned or forced into early retirement / resignation to make way for an islamo fascistic take over of the military by the totally corrupt Erdogan administration and his AKP, which culminated in a total disgrace for the Turkish people.
      The Turkish nation, which was once the most powerful civilization in the world, is now in total disarray after Political Islam has ruined the country’s modernization efforts in education and labor force, and ideologically divided the nation. This medieval polito-islamic movement was revitalized in these lands as part of the Green Belt project against Soviet influence by the CIA, the budding Turkish republic’s modernization efforts thus fell victim to the Cold War, but that’s the topic of another entry…

      1. No disrespect but even an idiot could see this was a purge; Don’t be naive. There was only one winner from this—Erdogan. Within 24 hours, he had over 2,700 judges removed from duty. Erdogan can now implement the changes in law and the constitution to enable an Islamic dictatorship.

        1. All the judges, prosecutors, military officers and the police officers that are now being arrested were already being followed for months and short listed for removal. The gulenist movement has infiltrated into every state institution, with the earlier blessing and active cooperation of Erdogan, who once was their ally. These are both equally corrupt and medievally minded groups of political Islam.
          The political cunning of Erdogan is to paint all of his enemies in the broad brush of “parallel movement” and arrest all opposition now that he has briefly regathered popular support for his totalitarian policies in the guise of “hero of democracy, champion of the people, etc.”.
          Meanwhile, the Turkish markets and lira have instantly collapsed over 10 % against all the major currencies, tourism paralyzed, foreign investments paralyzed, and the political administration, military and intelligence service all looked like grossly incompetent amateurs in the eyes of the entire world. So there are absolutely no Turkish winners in this debacle. Don’t be fooled by the short sighted petty political moves of the completely debunked totalitarian regime of Erdogan, he will only achieve further instability (by continuing to socially engineer all essential state institutions), further uprisings and total cultural and ideological division of the country. This coup debacle is the final nail in the coffin for democracy in modern Turkei…

        2. The Gülenist movment is very powerful in the USA. They run charter schools in America which receive public money and teach Turkish supremacy and Islam. Sounds like a joke but no! They use H1B visas to import Turkish citizens to fill every position in the schools from professor to accountant to janitor, replacing America workers. Other scams include hiring Turkish construction companies with public money to build their infastructure. In general the money they receive ends up going back to Gulenist groups in Turkey and abroad.
          Lastly they also teach Turkish instead of Spanish as foreign language in Texas because well Turkish is the most spoken language along the Mexican border.

      2. You really think a coup would go on with the president away on vacation and without an ability to shoot down a helicopter (that the president ANNOUNCED he was taking?) at the two major airports in the country? You really think he would be able to arrest 6000 people in less than 24 hours without this being stage?
        It’s possible this was just a forced early, botched coup. More likely this was a staged attempt to consolidate power and begin the change to a Muslim government.

      3. The Turkish nation, which was once the most powerful civilization in the world…

        What time was this?
        Turks have had a large dominion in the past, but it was always corrupt and moribund (like a less respectable Spanish empire).

        1. You are only referring to the last 3 centuries up until 1920, which saw the total decline and collapse of the Ottoman Empire.
          Other than the Ottomans, Turks established 18 sovereign entities in history and are the only civilization next to Chinese that has a continuity of sovereignty (survival without ever being conquered by foreign powers) since their inception. Entities like the Hun Empire, the Gokturks, the Seljuk Empire (up to 12th century), the Ghaznavids , and the Ottoman Empire between 1400 – 1600 were all considered the supreme civilization in the world at the height of their reigns.
          Western historians later deliberately introduced other ethnic elements and controversies to the legacy of these civilizations, in fear that a renewed Turkish nationalism through Ataturk would lead to the quick annexation of the oil rich and geo-strategic lands in the Middle East by modern Turkei. So they went on to create puppet states whose maps were “drawn with canes on the sand” like Iraq in the region, and the pursuant sectarian struggles led to the current hell that has become the modern Middle East…

        2. You seem to be really confused. From what you write I conclude that you are of Turkish origins. It is really good that you are proud to be Turkish if it is your heritage. You should be. However to state that “…were all considered the supreme civilization in the world at the height of their reigns” is absolutely false. The supremacy of a civilization cannot be measured by conquered lands, pillage and destruction. This is military supremacy maybe but not civilization supremacy. Because all of these “turkish” empires you mention,they expanded in expense of other empires by looting killing, conquering and subjugating other empires.
          Where are the art, the literature, the architecture, the philosophy, the theatre, the inventions of “turkish” people than can support a supremacy of civilization? I can answer that: nowhere to be found. In fact, the ottoman era in eastern meditereanean was the equavalent of the “dark ages” for the eastern european people, especially for the slavs and the Greeks
          A last note: The most durable empire was without a doubt the roman empire (27BC – 1453AD) that was about 1.500 years of continuity of sovereignty.

        3. There is a tremendous amount of Turkish legacy, inventions and art in all of these aforementioned lands, just as there is tremendous contributions by the Chinese, Persians and other long lasting civilizations to the collective experience of mankind in the world. It’s just that none of these are in the English language, so they don’t permeate as easily to western audiences as the latin / romance legacy.
          The western world wants to follow their own “origination myth” via the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, supported by the thought systems of ancient Greek philosophers and the Judeo-Christian tradition, which is fine, but it doesn’t mean that during most of history, and not even during most of the reign of these entities, they were the supreme powers in the world. In fact Chinese and Turks were building well administered cities while people were still eating each other in Britania… In the near future, when US finally collapses and let’s say if China becomes the predominant force in the world, you will see history rewritten as if it had been the Chinese all along that were the key player in the progress of human civilization.
          Might almost always makes right in these cases, that’s why the civilization with the greatest military might also ends up as looking like the most virtuous, cultivated, philosophical, etc. Since the most primal goal is to ensure continuity of human survival in this rough universe, there is some merit in this approach. It’s not good or evil, it’s just basic instinctive human nature.

        4. I am not so sure… Can you name 10 great personalities of turkish origins besides Kings and rulers?
          For example in the classical age we had :
          Aristotle (Philosopher),
          Hippocrates (Physician)
          Pythagoras (Mathematician and Philosopher)
          Homer (Poet),
          Euripidis (Tragedian ),
          Iktinos (Architect),
          Asclipios (the father of Medicine),
          Archimides (Engineer),
          Herodote (the father of History)
          Lycurgus (Statesman)
          All of these were Greeks and we know about all of them mainly from Greek literature not Roman.
          “The western world wants to follow their own “origination myth” via the rise and fall of the Roman Empire, supported by the thought systems of ancient Greek philosophers and the Judeo-Christian tradition, which is fine, but it doesn’t mean that during most of history, and not even during most of the reign of these entities, they were the supreme powers in the world. In fact Chinese and Turks were building well administered cities while people were still eating each other in Britania… ”
          I agree with you to some extent. They have indeed created an “origination myth” via the rise and fall of the Roman Empire in order to hide the fact that most of the western europeans are descendants of the Germanic (Goths Anglo-Saxons and Franks), Celtic and Norse tribes that pillaged and conquered the western part of the Roman Empire.
          These tribes were ‘barbaric’ in comparison to the more advanced and civilized Romans. That is why we had the “dark age”, over 1.000 years without a significant advance, in inventions, literature, architecture etc. They altered much of history and tried to convince us that there were two different Roman Empires the latin west and the greek east and from the western part of the empire all the modern western europeans are descended which of course it is not true at all. That is why we have the term “byzantine empire” which is a false name that describes the christian Roman Empire of the middle ages that was the most advanced and powerful empire at the time until the sack of Constantinople by the Crusaders in 1204.
          “Might almost always makes right in these cases, that’s why the civilization with the greatest military might also ends up as looking like the most virtuous, cultivated, philosophical, etc. ”
          Yes this is true indeed might almost always makes right. However the level of civilization is not merely military power. Instead you can say that even the most advanced civilization will crumble and fall if it becomes weak and does not have a strong military to defend itself.

        5. They have formed 16 empires over the centuries. Ottoman, Seljuk, Mughal etc

        6. Like China, the Turks were conquered by others. No technicalities required: they once held land and that land was wrest from their control.
          The only place the Turkish civilization was considered a “supreme” one is in Turkish works. Certainly not in objective reality 🙂

        7. you asked a question loaded with some very false assumptions, and you got your answer.. if you refuse to educate yourself, you need more help than can be provided on a website…

        8. Nah bro obviously you have some fealty to those nasty Turks. They relay on exploiting the intellect of other peoples. When the inquistion expelled the Jews the Sultan welcomed them with open arms. Reason being was they were the elite, the intellect of society. Non Turks whether Jew, Christian, Orthodox were the foundation of any Ottoman empire greatness.
          Turks are too busy killing, being slaves to the carnal world raping boys and women to be able to actual be able to create something.

      4. “The Turkish nation, which was once the most powerful civilization in the world, is now in total disarray after Political Islam has ruined the country’s modernization efforts in education and labor force, and ideologically divided the nation”
        If you are referring to the ottoman empire, yes it was a powerful empire (not the most powerful at the time and not a civilization) in the mediterranean for about 200 years after the fall of Constantinople (Up until the reign of Suleiman the magnificent). Back then there was not any “turkish nation” and do not forget that the best soldiers of the empire where the Jenisaries which where not turks by any means. Also remember that this empire was powerful because of Islam not inspite of it. The revolution of young turks created the modern turkish identity and the westernized state we now have, which is more or less a puppet state just like the other ones that emerged from the collapse of the ottoman empire.

        1. Completely false information, you are being misled by the black propaganda of political Islam, which has become a total disaster for all nations that embraced it since the last 500 years, as evidenced by 0 significant muslim inventions and 0 muslim world power states in the last 500 years or so. Islam might be a great religion for personal pursuit, but its politically manipulated and “socially engineered” corrupt version is a sure way to quickly send entire nations and people to the rock bottom of human civilization.
          Check my comment above for a brief summary of Turkish history since BC times.

        2. Islam and their struggle-“Jihad” is the sole reason of the expansion of those empires in the first place. I agree that Islam was social engineered but this does not change the fact that because of it those empires expanded and became so powerful.

      5. Political Islam has always existed. Whilst fascism is modernist. Not fascist at all in my opinion rather a restoration of islamic turkey as it was.

    4. Number one doesn’t seem improbable though, the tankers wouldn’t necessarily want to run people over… 2 and 3 sound right though, the “coup” seems pretty fishy.

      1. actually there was one exact moment like this during this coup… all caught on video.

        1. Link? All I saw were tanks stopped on the streets and swarmed by civilians and cops.

        2. Wow. One really dumb guy. I think that was an APC not a tank – not that it really matters. I’ve driven the old M-113 and you are looking through a slit when driving with the hatch closed. Good chance they didn’t even know dumbass was standing there. He might be okay if his head didn’t bounce of the pavement too hard.
          The other one is rough – I stayed the fuck away from moving tanks. The drivers can’t see and they are too fucking big to mess with.

        3. yeah i also think that the way he jumped in front of them, the driver didn’t even have a chance to see him.

      2. They should have used semi trucks probably better at running people over than tanks…

      1. I was in a National Guard tank battalion. The tankers called Infantry “crunchies”. It is pretty damn scary when a 70-ton tank zips by at 50 mph.

    5. 3. The ruler being attacked doesn’t announce he’s flying into the country through hostile airspace – he flies away as fast as he can or he’s shot out of the sky

      Exactly. Why was Erdogan not arrested within minutes of the coup? In a country that can shoot down a Russian fighter-bomber because it might have strayed into their airspace for less than a minute but can’t stop the target of the coup taking off and traveling to a press conference?
      Turkey has one of the top 10 militaries in the world. Yet, all they did was capture a broadcaster for roughly 2 hours, while 15 other broadcasters were live. Moreover, they didn’t even try to go after any politicians.
      People are dead because of this farce. Yet, Erdogan is mysteriously unscathed and surprisingly prepared for the whole thing? A coup that is prepared to kill dozens doesn’t start with a target who lives past the first minute.

        1. Two rebel pilots had Erdogan’s plane in their sights and yet he was able to fly on. Why? A powerful army surrenders like children to civilians? Immediately, Erdogan’s government locates and arrests 2800 Judges? Laughably fake, five minute coup.

        2. “Two rebel pilots had Erdogan’s plane in their sights and yet he was able to fly on.”
          Cuz they would have been shot down themselves
          “A powerful army surrenders like children to civilians?”
          Outside of the upper echelon that planned it, the lower raked soldiers, cannon fodders, were told this was an army exercise.
          Coups don’t always succeed. A similar example is Pakistan which is another coup plagued country, 3/6 for attempts. Those 3 failed ones came from lower ranks just like this one.
          ” Immediately, Erdogan’s government locates and arrests 2800 Judges?
          There is a religious movement within Sunni Islam lead by a fellow called Gulen. His followers are encouraged to take positions in institutions like Military, Judiciary etc and are like a Trojan Horse. This movement even operates its branch of private schools to pump out the ideal graduate to give you an idea of the severity of their infiltration.
          Gulenists are being hunted down for over a year now and when you are involved in anti-state activities especially things like toppling a gov’t which this group has been bent on doing, the state obviously keeps an eye.

        3. Stopped reading at “Cuz they would have been shot down themselves.” Here’s the reality:

          “At least two F-16s harassed Erdogan’s plane while it was in the air and en route to Istanbul. They locked their radars on his plane and on two other F-16s protecting him,” a former military officer with knowledge of the events told Reuters.
          “Why they didn’t fire is a mystery,” he said.

          You live in a fantasy.

        4. Read it before. That’s why I said they would’ve been shot themselves however, I should’ve said “possibly* shot down themselves” as its not a sure thing.
          Your argument was built on three premises, you cherry picked to address just one. Even that revolves around a “mystery” according to your own source. Doesn’t prove anything.

        5. Shot down by who? Of course it’s not a sure thing because it’s a straw argument you made up to knock down. The word “possibly” doesn’t magically make it less ridiculous. You’re not even debating the argument anymore because it’s easier to ramble about cherry picking. Carry on.

        6. You asked why they didnt shoot down Erdogan’s plane? They wouldve been shot or possibly*shot down by pro-govt F-16s that were there. They perhaps didnt fancy a firefight.
          Saying that Im not arguing the point or cherry picking what you want to address is simply your way of copping out of the debate because you realize your understanding of Turkish politics is superficial.

    6. Yeah, I was smelling the foul odor of BS early on. Besides, you don’t stage a coup against a sitting elected (ie popular leader) unless you’re planning to take him out immediately. Not much of any of the tactics and strategy (or lack thereof) made sense. Good call.

    7. Good points it is obvious this was a Reichstag coup. While the coup may have been real Erdogan and others know of it and hence the well executed plan and theater during those 24 hours. Erdogan has been methodically removing obstacles which impede the ascent to an Islamic dictatorship.
      It is well known he aspires to revive the Ottoman Empire with him as Sultan.
      For the ignorant masses Turkey has been one of the greatest military/political threats to the west for close to a thousand years. Strange how European countries allow i.e Germany allow masses of Turks when most of Europe was constantly at war with them fighting them and attempting to expel.
      Side note but Germany will become evil again just like the Nazis. They are the ones running the EU. They are the ones running the refugee invasion, they are also now raiding and arresting people who make comments aganist the refugees. Germany will rise to work hand and hand with Erdogan as he attempts to subjugate Europe and potentially Germany may become a Islamofacist, again jew hating, evil power

    8. “1. Crowds don’t stop tanks – tanks accelerate through the crunchies.”
      The lower ranked ones were under the impression this was an exercise.
      “2. Police don’t arrest squads of armed soldiers they run like hell from them or they die.”
      Not if they have the authority coming straight down from the President himself.
      The ruler being attacked doesn’t announce he’s flying into the country
      through hostile airspace – he flies away as fast as he can or he’s shot
      out of the sky ”
      That was after the coup was taken care of.
      I mean this in the most respectful way possible but your three premises do not conclude “therefore, it was a fake coup” too well.

    9. It really became obvious when Ergodan began arresting members of the judiciary as well.

  6. I’m genuinely puzzled by this coup. While I’m tending towards the idea that Erdogan may have masterminded or at least commandeered the whole thing (for instance by intercepting intelligence of a real coup) the other factors are quite puzzling.
    It seems Erdogan is genuinely moving turkey towards islamification i.e. away from the ataturk secular state. Clearly the purges of the Kemalists and the Gulenists are a part of this – that much must surely be genuine. Erdogan has for some time been concerned about the Gulenist shadow government (with the suggestion that that not only Gulen but the Donmeh might be involved in this) and while he seems to have been at one with them at one time, the fact that they moved against him in the Ergemikon affair (did I get that right – probably not) suggests that there has been a degree of positioning and shifting of ideological positions over the last few years away from the gulenists and towards islam. The call to prayer earlier this week at the hagia sophia appears to have been the symbolic beginning of this in a sense – it’s almost as though it was done as a means to provide the coup plotters with an excuse.
    But something still seems wrong. Erdogan seems to have been supporting ISIS (along with Saudi – despite both countries having suffered some recent fairly mild terrorist attacks) at least with respect to supportin ISIS at the Syrian border I think.
    Yet this is pretty much what the US has been doing as well. It was only a few months ago that Erdogan shot down a Russian plane – has something massive changed in between time – has Erdogan realigned with Russia and broken with the EU / US? Does anyone believe that the US supported this coup – the surface argument that the US is worried about Islamification of Turkey doesn’t seem consistent: the US has done everything it could to promote radical islam and the islamification of former states. So is this Erdogan / Obama tension completely fake? Are they working in this together – is Gulen the fall guy in this. Or does he still have a part to play in this. Turkey’s politics seem quite byzantine sometimes

    1. Obama is all in for Erdogan. They are fellow Islamists who both want a Muslim caliphate to rule the ME, to destroy Israel, and the Muslim call to prayer to be broadcast from every building in the West. Despite the hostility between Turkey and Russia, Putin probably figures that Erdogan is worth keeping around since he is a thorn in NATO’s side. Erdogan effectively has no external enemies, so the coup was either staged (highly likely) or it was simply a poorly planned coup attempt.

      1. You might be right. I find it hard to get my head round it all. Erdogan had some tough words for Obama after the coup. It would be distasteful if it was all ‘stage-managed’ so to speak

        1. I’m tending towards this being either a last ditch desperate attempt by a small faction in the military, or in some form instigated by Erdogan, mostly because past coups have been successful and well coordinated affairs.
          Russia turkey relations make no real sense to me, there has to be something behind the shift that we are not being told. I mean turkey quite openly has been supporting Islamist elements in Syria against Assad and Russia has been bombing those same groups and protecting Assad for he obvious reason of the Tartus base and others.
          There simply are bits of the puzzle missing right now.

        2. yes, that’s pretty much how I feel. There are pieces of the puzzle missing – not impossible to guess, but I suspect there is deliberate obfuscation. It may be that Erdogan is playing or trying to keep some distance from both the US and the Russians, but his role in supporting Islamist elements has always placed him more obviously in the US camp as a natural enemy of Assad / Putin. Erdogan is however a survivor and it could be that fear of a Gulenist plot might have pushed him away from the Americans (who are harbouring Gulen): the kind of purge that is going on at the moment isn’t just window dressing. The question I’d like answered is whether the US would prefer the continuance of a secular state (Gulen would probably have kept things moderate at least) or whether they are OK with Erdogan islamising – i.e. is he still controllable to some degree?

      2. Obama a fundamentalist Muslim? Is this why he drinks, smokes, and admits to have smoked cannabis in the past? He wants to destroy Israel? Is this why he refuses to evoke the Symington amendment and cut aid to israel?

        1. It’s called “taqiyya”- the Muslim practice of disguising ones intentions to aid in their “jihad” (or “struggle”). Sometimes, Muslims are allowed to hide their faith to avoid detection. Obama is doing some serious taqiyya by seemingly breaking Muslim rules all over the place, but he is doing as much as he can. For example, he made the Iran deal so soft on Iran that even though he claims it will stop Iran, it will only ensure that Iran gets the bomb with America’s blessing. Then, Iran will nuke Israel while sitting atop a mountain of cash brought into the country by Obama’s corporate cronies (who are DYING to do business in Iran even as they make few increases here). He doesn’t need to cut aid to Israel because how will an American-made M16 or some cash stop 20 nuclear-tipped missiles headed your way?

        2. That thing is meant to stop small rockets being fired from Gaza, not a missile that goes into space and then unloads the nukes in space over the target. Also, the interceptors that are supposed to shoot those missiles down have a high failure rate, so if multiple missiles were fired at least one would make it to the target.

        3. Well not my problem, I didn’t waste money on a system to stop hobby rockets with a small explosive charge put inside…

        4. Yeah, then those princes aren’t real Muslims. I wouldn’t be surprised if they dislike the current Saudi regime.

      3. I dont think Obama is a muslim but he clearly is a islam sympathizer because he sees Islam as a counter weight against Western supremacy. More than a muslim, he his a western that hates the West, in other words a marxist, and i believe this is far more dangerous.

    2. Erdogan wants to revive Turkeys power in the region, Ottoman style, and this coup is giving him the chance to purge inside opposition to its personal goals and ambitions by erasing Ataturk legacy and islamize the state and society.
      Expect Turkey to play a major role in that area together with Persia and the Saudis.

      1. I agree with that, but he used to be pretty close to the secularists and i think the gulenists which raises v the question whether this is genuinely ideological or mere political ambition / opportunism. It’s almost as though the secular ‘shadow state’ threatened his position and the decided to go all in with the Islamists. I’m also unclear to what extent he’s really at odds with or in alignment with actual US policy which like Turkeys appears to be mostly pro Islamist at least with respect to Syria etc

        1. I agree. Turkeys politics are very confusing as its normal in that area. To many tribes, to many historical problems, disputed territories, sunnies versus shias, wars…I believe however we can agree that Erdogan is a dangerous man that can turn that region in a even more problematic thing to the West. The only good thing is: more and more Turkey is out of any possibility of entering the EU. Imagine 80 million muslims with free range over Europe.

        2. Definitely, byzantine is byzantine for a reason. The circumstances of the young turk revolution and the fact that there may well to some extent have been a “shadow government” just serves to make for a very insecure situation. It’s quite possible Erdogan is fully beholden to nobody, which in a sense makes him even more dangerous particularly if he really does want a new ottoman empire, and is prepared to islamise to make it happen. One of the notable things about the attempted coup were the civilians he was able to get onto the street so quickly. They appear to have been islamists, some doing ISIS salutes if I’ve understood correctly

        3. “One of the notable things about the attempted coup were the civilians he was able to get onto the street so quickly. ”
          That is what saved him: using civilians as human shields. In fact, when i saw the military not being able to impose martial law, i said to myself that the coup was going to fail. The army is probably the only obstacle to radical Islam to take over in many places in that area, we just have to look at Egypt.
          The last thing we need in the West, is a new muslim state like Persia or Saudi Arabia but its going to happen.

        4. Sure, another adventuresome Islamic state with imperial ambitions is not such a great thing. The question arises though whether the coup ever really had a chance of succeeding. Some are suggesting it was a panicked (and therefore badly planned) reaction to (intended) rapprochement with Russia / Syria – – and that same week it seems call to prayer was sounded in the hagia sophia for the first time since the founding of the secular republic. That’s a possibility, but then you have to consider that the troops being ordered onto the street weren’t even aware they were engaged in anything other than an exercise or drill (or so its been said). The thing about Turkish politics is that it is very conspiratorial and byzantine (as mentioned) – even Gulen himself having been accused of orchestrating the coup has turned round (perhaps predictably) and said no, it was Erdogan who set up the whole thing. While ordinarily such thinking might earn someone a tin foil hat for a prize with Turkey it’s not something that should be dismissed out of hand. The purges in particular, together with the ability to present the people with physical evidence of an external threat all provide motive for such a coup. There’s always the possibility that the intelligence services got wind of an intended coup (in a sense it may have been already telegraphed and decided either to let it play out and then stomp it, or alternatively stage a pre-coup. An alternative might be that the whole thing was staged from beginning to end.
          I don’t really favour any of the above. I don’t think we have enough information

        5. “, but then you have to consider that the troops being ordered onto the street weren’t even aware they were engaged in anything other than an exercise or drill ”
          I remember operation Valkyrie in Nazi Germany. Probably they were used as the provisional army in von Stauffenberg attempted coup. Erdogan is now cracking down on Universities, the media, public administration, etc. Expect a dictatorship in just a few years, a muslim one, at the gates of Europe.

        6. Maybe, but Hitler was probably better ensconced with fewer powerful enemies than Erdogan. The army and professions have long been a limit on this rule. For the army to squander its position like this seems criminal. I’m still not absolutely convinced it was a legit coup

  7. Step 1: Be a country that has resources the USA wants.
    Step 2: Wait for the CIA to do the rest.

  8. A coup should’ve happened here 7 years ago. Maybe it would be so hard to pull it off in a country this big that Obama had time to purge the military before it could be fully planned.

    1. TBH it should’ve happened sooner as Dubya near the end was channeling 0bama,eg: “I’ve abandoned free market principles to save the free market” 🙁
      Since we didn’t get a coup under socialist FDR (whose wife styled him our “benevolent dictator”), conniving LBJ or incompetent Carter-all of whom have done more damage than 0bama-I’m not surprised we haven’t seen one.
      But I can’t argue with 0bama purging the US military. 🙁

    1. From where I’m sitting a lot of the narrative doesn’t make sense if it were a full on genuine coup. It may have been a weak attempt by some desperate parties but if you look at the makeup of turkey and how effective and definitive prior coups were, it doesn’t jive.
      What it does do however is give Erdogan a big ass boost and excuse to finish purging secular and Gulenists from the leadership of the army thus effectively putting and end to the secular balance of power in the army ad it was originally intended by Ataturk when turkey was founded.

  9. I don’t think it was a false flag op, simply a hasty coup put on by desperate men who had already ran out of time, were already essentially on their way to prison, and had nothing left to lose.

  10. 1. Get a great power to fund and arm your clan or organization
    2. Recruit jobless and bloodthirsty men by appealling to an ideal you do not personally believe in
    3. Provoke the rightful governement into brash action by goading overzealous police forces
    4. Wait for clueless western media to poke their noses in
    5. Get foreign powers to legitimize you as an acceptable alternative
    6. Seize governement
    7. Enjoy the fruits of victory, ie. bleed the country dry of its ressources and sell them to the highest foreign bidder.
    8. And rest.

    1. Just look at Iran in 1979- get dumbass college students to take on all of initial work and risk. When things actually go as planned and theyve got it in the bag, take over the reins from them and kick their asses on down the road. They can die for your cause in a few years when the war for Iraq kicks off and your homies occupy all the sweet govt offices.

      1. Funny thing, the Ayatollah killed more of his own supporters than the Shah did.

        1. With the whole Iran-Iraq war? Also funny, without all that fresh military hardware the evil Americans sold the Shah, Iran would have lost the air war and therefore been pooched on the ground.

        2. No, I mean in the aftermath of the revolution. The ayatollah was never expected to become the leader. He pulled a fast one, leveraged his support, and killed a couple thousand of his potential future rival groups (former supporters) in order to consolidate his power.

      1. They are almost always bad for the people. I can’t think of one that was beneficial, especially these days.

        1. I’d say the coup by Julius Caesar was good. There were a few, but overall they are bad. Most good people with respect for human rights don’t support the idea of overthrowing a government, even if it is bad sadly.

    1. here’s the subhead from that link:
      “President Erdogan’s attitudes to Israel, Russia and Syria have undergone a sudden reset”
      hard to miss Israel I think.

      1. So does that mean that the “reset button” Hillary Clinton gave Russia finally worked? 😉

    2. Yes others have been discussing this, such as John Xenakis. Erdogan is not in simpatico with his military, which has traditionally been the protector of a secular Turkey.

    3. Appears more like Erdogan is erradicating potential interal threats and using a staged coup by his own design. There were probably a few senior and junior officers who believed it, but they were prepped as pawns for a bigger game.
      Obama has destroyed US influence in the region, so Russia if filling the vacuum and appears to be in for the long haul. Turkey is simply going with the strong horse.

  11. This article should be part of a a series. There have been many coups, even recently in Thailand, Egypt, and Myanmar. There is a way to get it done. Also would like to see more in-depth analysis of why Turkey’s failed.

  12. “failed to arrest”? ….. you mean failed to end. That would be first on my agenda. If you can’t take down the main team; your not going to win any coup.

  13. Why’d coups succeed against pro-Western governments? Because we, the west, let them, not because of the innate power of the coup.

  14. Good see that the ROK society is up to date on things.
    Especially on the bullshit.
    Nice to be a part of this.

  15. The coup in Turkey didn’t succeed because it was not mean to. It was a fake and organised by Erdogan himself to allow to usurp the whole power. The soldiers were told that they were going on exercise.
    The scariest part is that idiots in Brussels want Turkey in the EU.

      1. That’s because those people are part of a Trojan Horse (Gulen movement) who are bent on toppling the government so no wonder the State knew.

  16. Lots of people with an “opinion” but I guess welcome to the internet! It’s one thing to have a contrasting point of view, but so many people simply fail to demonstrate a thorough understanding of Turkish politics. Lots of mumbo jumbo pseudo intellectualism based on skimming an article or two on Turkey in NY Times.
    The coup failed because it was one faction within the Army.
    Many were under the impression it was an exercise hence the shock on their faces when getting scolded by the crowd
    The judges being arrested are part of a Trojan Horse (Gulen) and when you are involved with people like that the State must keep an eye on you.
    Just because it didn’t go your way doesn’t mean it was fake!

    1. “Just because it didn’t go your way doesn’t mean it was fake!”
      Your way? Most of us are not turkish, but Erdogan is filthy fascist rodent you seem to be attached too.
      Erdogan’s revenge: Purge hits 50,000 and academics banned from leaving Turkey as military launches first airstrikes against Kurdish rebels since failed coup
      Read more:

      1. By your way I mean the many people hate the current gov’t so much they’d prefer chaos over a democratically elected government (52% of vote) because that is exactly what would’ve happened had the people’s will been overturned instead of waiting for it to be voted out. The premise was a watered down democracy over a civil war. I want them voted out not booted by a coup. It’s attaching yourself to principles of democracy, order and peace. I’m glad you said “seem to be attached” rather out right calling me a fan boy!
        The 3 opposition parties were unanimous against the coup. This includes ultra-secular CHP which has second highest vote of 25% ish, founded by Ataturk himself and is against Muslims wearing head scarf in public institutions like university in a country that 99% Muslim. Others include the Kurdish HDP.
        As for the purge, you need to realize the extent of Gulen movement and its followers in state institutions: Armed Forces, Education, Judiciary, you name it. Therefore, this is a precautionary exercise to see who is connected to whom. Just yesterday they released 700 soldiers after investigation. So, on and so forth.
        Kurdish issue is another can of worms, which deviates from the subject: Coup was fake or real? With due respect.

        1. It is now 60k arrested and detianed fan boy. The turkish dictator has nothing to do with the “principles of democracy, order and peace.” He is a tyrant consolidating power and you are lapping it up.

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