Politisk kafkaisk korruption i Turkiet

Har ingen gedignare kunskap om Turkiet i politiskt hänseende, men fann via Claire Berlinski en intressant längre artikel i av Pinar Dogan och Dani Rodrik, i The National Interrest, om aktuell turkisk politisk korruption.

I tisdags arresterades en ansedd polischef, Hanefi Avci, som släppt en bok som bl a beskriver en påstådd komplott mot APK 2003 som fabricerad. Han anklagas nu för samarbete med en extremistisk organisation.

Ur Dogans och Rodriks artikel:

"In just about three months, 196 active-duty and retired officers are scheduled to go on trial in Turkey, charged with plotting in 2003 to overthrow the then-newly elected Justice and Development Party (AKP) government. The alleged coup plot—codenamed Operation Sledgehammer—involved horrifying acts, including the bombing of mosques and the downing of a Turkish fighter, aimed at destabilizing the government and paving the way for martial law and eventual takeover.

If the charges prove to be well-founded, the country’s powerful military establishment will stand disgraced for harboring violent, anti-democratic elements among its senior ranks. And it will be the first time that civilians have brought it to account for its frequent political intervention. Turkish democracy will have gone through a rite of passage, emerging stronger. Conservative-Islamist groups—the AKP and their ally the Gülen movement, a network of the followers of the Muslim spiritual leader Fethullah Gülen—will be vindicated and their political dominance assured.

But if the prosecutors’ case crumbles, it is the government, the Gülenists, the prosecutors, the media, and much of the country’s intelligentsia that will find itself discredited. For these groups have fought hard in recent months to convince Turks (and Turkey’s friends abroad) of the veracity of the Sledgehammer coup plot.

The sad irony is that the facts of the case leave no doubt as to where the truth lies: Operation Sledgehammer is a fiction. Its authors are not the defendants in the case but unknown malfeasants who fabricated the documents sometime after 2008. Anyone with a couple of hours to spare—and a good command of the Turkish language—can see it for themselves. That the charges have been allowed to stand for so long—and that a trial will take place at al—is testimony to the intensity of the disinformation campaign waged by the AKP and its supporters.

This is a bold claim, but one that is easy to substantiate. The Sledgehammer plot is chock-full of inconsistencies, the most telling of which are the inadvertent, but glaring anachronisms that make it plain that it could not have been hatched in 2003 as claimed. The documents purporting to be original military plans from 2003 contain references to entities that did not yet exist and future developments that could not have been known at the time. It’s as if a text pretending to date from 1970 referred to Diana Spencer as Princess of Wales—a title which she acquired only in 1981—or mentioned her car crash decades later. Hence, to any but the most jaundiced eye it is obvious that the incriminating documents were authored not by the military officers on trial, but by others many years later."

Sen går artikeln igenom diverse tveksamheter kring dokumenten och ställer sedan frågan vem som kan ha gjort förfalskningarna. Amerikanska experter anser att dokumenten "aimed at mobilizing U.S. support for the AKP government against the Turkish Army".


"In a recently released book by a distinguished police chief, Hanefi Avci, much light has been shed on these machinations. Avci claims that followers of Fethullah Gülen—the influential US-based spiritual leader—have formed a state within the state, effectively wresting control of the national police and large parts of the judiciary. (The Gülen movement is independent from the AKP, but the two have long been closely allied.) Gülenist police officers and prosecutors are targeting their perceived opponents, Avci writes, using illegal wiretaps, selective leaks to the media, judicial manipulation, planted evidence, and fabricated documents. He describes the organization of the Gülenists within the national police in some detail, even naming the imam who allegedly runs the network. Avci does not discuss the Sledgehammer case in detail, but leaves no doubt that he believes the defendants have been framed.

Such accusations against the Gülen movement are not new in Turkey. But what makes the book a bombshell is that its author is known to be close to the Gülen movement and the AKP. He also has an impeccable track record of courage and incorruptibility. No friend of the army, he famously pursued rogue elements within the military in a landmark investigation some years ago. Furthermore, Avci makes clear he abhors the worldviews of some of the military officers in the Sledgehammer case.

So Avci cannot be accused of harboring militarist, ultra-secularist, or ultra-nationalist sympathies. In view of his inside knowledge and long career in intelligence, neither can he be called a conspiracy theorist making wild accusation. His story has a credibility that earlier accounts have lacked. Yet when Avci reported his concerns to his governmental superiors, appealing personally to a minister, nothing happened. The AKP government refused to investigate and did nothing with Avci’s information.

Once the darling of government-friendly media, Avci has instead found himself the subject of an intense character assassination campaign waged by those same publications. In a pattern that is all too familiar, police have now linked him to a violent extremist group. Gülenist media are having a field day with the damaging, if implausible, accusations leaked from the investigation.

Only a serious and impartial investigation can verify whether Avci’s claims are well-founded. But they ring true and help make sense of many curious aspects of the Sledgehammer case. They account in particular for the highly prejudicial behavior of the prosecutors and the investigators, who have systematically disregarded evidence of fabrication while feeding the media with leaks against the defendants."

Sledgehammer-fallet och liknande exempel anses hjälpa Erdogan att komma i överläge gentemot oppositionen och militären där han lanserar sig som demokratins beskyddare mot kuppmakare i militären och bland sekulära.

Denna tragedin, menar artikelförfattarna, kommer att drabba förtroendet för dem som ansetts upprätthålla Turkiets demokrati (APK och Gülenist-allierade) och göra det svårt att rekonstruera den turkiska demokratin. De avslutar:

Putting Turkey back on the right path will require untainted political leaders and great courage and leadership on their part. It will also take an army that is willing to make a sharp break with the military coups and political meddling of the past.

Ja, man får hoppas att de finns som förmår att reda ut detta.

Relaterat i media: GP
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