10 amazing facts about Turkey’s failed coup attempt
AP photoMany things have been said about the July 15 coup attempt that cost the lives of at least 246 people and led to the arrest or dismissal of thousands of people.
Suffering from a significant economic damage and social tension, Turkey declared a state of emergency and introduced extraordinary measures, including the shutting down of thousands of institutions across the country.
The coup attempt was amazing in itself, as a group of brainwashed maniacs went as far as to bomb their own citizens with F-16s and shell them with tanks.
This picture is so big that a number of remarkable smaller details have gone unnoticed.
1) HOW TO STOP A TANK?
According to Google Trends, the number of Turks who searched to learn “how to stop a tank” skyrocketed in the immediate aftermath of the coup attempt.
Some even prepared animations to explain it.
One kebab vendor in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa actually managed to halt a tank in its tracks by stuffing some of his clothing into the tank’s exhaust pipe, according to Turkish media reports. There is plenty of other amazing footage on the web, such as a YouTube video showing a local municipality truck crashing into the tank of a coup-plotter’s tank.
2) PUTSCHISTS LOOKING FOR ERDOGAN’S HOTEL
A group of soldiers, who had been sent to the southwestern resort town of Marmaris to kill President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, asked locals in the streets about the whereabouts of the hotel where he was staying, according to Dogan News Agency. Just imagine running into a group of military men carrying heavy arms, asking you kindly, “Excuse me, where is the Grand Yazıcı Hotel?”
3) GÜLEN’S GENIE
Speaking days after the coup attempt, Ankara’s eccentric mayor, Melih Gökçek, claimed that the U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen, who is accused of being the leader of the coup attempt, has “enslaved” his followers using genies.
4) GÜLEN’S MILITARY YEARS
According to a book written by journalist Mehmet Barlas and published in 2000, Fethullah Gülen served in the Turkish military as a radio operator under Talat Aydemir. Aydemir was a colonel who attempted to stage two military coups in the 1960s - pardoned after the first one and executed after the second. This interesting detail in Barlas’ book went largely unnoticed until the July 15 coup attempt.
5) BALYOZ VICTIMS RESISTED THE COUP
One general and two colonels, who had spent three years in jail during the sham trials of the fabricated Balyoz coup plot case overseen by Gülenist judges and prosecutors, clashed with putschist soldiers during the coup attempt, according to a report in daily Posta.
6) MYSTERIOUS DOLLAR BILLS
Turkish media has reported on a curious communication method of Gülenist soldiers, based on letters written on dollar bills. Reports say the group identified its crypto members through the bills, with a serial number starting with “F” for Gülenist officers, but “J” and “C” for lower ranked army members and businessmen.
Pro-government daily Zaman, meanwhile, spectacularly claimed that Gülen was distributing these bills as a kind of amulet, “because the dollar bill depicts masonic symbols and Illuminati figures such as the Eye of Providence”!
As a result of the reports, locals in the Central Anatolian province of Konya are said to have panicked when unknown people distributed dollar bills in envelopes to local children.
7) HOLD ON THE LINE, PLEASE, FOR ONE YEAR…
Isn’t it amazing that the top brass of the Turkish Armed Forces were all taken hostage and then rescued? It may be equally amazing that they failed to prevent die-hard Gülenist officers from rising so far up the ranks. Indeed, Gülenist aides-de-camp and chiefs of staff played a key role in the coup attempt.
How could this failure be possible? One answer comes from Ahmet Zeki Uçok, a retired military prosecutor who has vast knowledge of Gülenists in the army. Speaking on CNN Türk, Uçok has said a number of lower ranking officers actually tried to warn the top brass about mid-level Gülenists in the army.
One such officer even wanted to talk directly to Turkish Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar about the issue. However, Akar’s chief aide delayed this request for a year, and it later turned out that he did this because he himself was also a Gülenist!
8) A FAREWELL TO BOOKS
McCarthyesque scenes have been seen across Turkey in the days since the coup attempt. Books written by Gülen are being dumped all over the place, including rivers and trash cans. It has been reported that one local imam was detained while burning a pile of Gülen books.
Meanwhile, the house where Gülen grew up in his hometown will be turned into a public toilet, pro-government media have reported.
9) CROWD-SOURCING GÜLENIST HUNT
A former police chief, who was dismissed over his links to Gülen, was caught in a tank in Istanbul during the coup attempt. He was wearing a military uniform at the time and officials think that many Gülenists could have used the same tactic that night.
One colleague has told me that authorities are now reviewing all photos of the coup attempt: “Some Gülenists who were not the members of the army were provided with military uniforms by Gülenist soldiers. But they couldn’t provide them with military boots. So look out for photos from July 15 of soldiers wearing military uniform but ordinary shoes.”
10) 'PEOPLE WANT DEATH PENALTY'
President Erdogan has said Turkish citizens want death penalty reintroduced. At least one citizen wants it so passionately, as seen in the end of the following video in which he shouts "idam" (death penalty) three times: