Second, it is not clear who would benefit from a coup. The military is no longer the secularist stronghold with a strong esprit de corps and sense of mission it once was. (Hence the widespread theory in Turkey that this was a coup staged by Erdogan himself, designed to pave the way for an Erdogan dictatorship. But this doesn’t quite ring true either, in light of Erdogan’s recent attempts to mend fences with Russia and Israel to strengthen the economy. He must know that even a failed coup would wreak havoc with the economy.)


Erdogan and his has allies blame the coup on a Gulenist cabal within the military. Fetullah Gulen is a US-based cleric who was once allied with Erdogan. Since their split, Erdogan has gone after Gulenists with a venom – declaring them a parallel state within the state (not too far from the truth).
We know that Gulen has a fair number of sympathizers in the military. In fact, the military may be Gulen’s last bastion of strength in Turkey, since others in the police, judiciary, media and other branches of the government have already been purged. No doubt, the government will use the coup as an opportunity to launch an even bigger attack on the Gulen movement.
The Gulen movement is certainly capable of a wide range of dirty tricks – but a coup does not seem to be their kind of thing. And besides, what did they stand to gain from such an amateurish attempt?


What are the causes? Is this pressure from refugees? Missteps from Erdogan? Economic unrest?
None of the above really. Whatever the reason and the actors involved, it was some kind of internal power struggle relating to none of those things.
[クライン]原因は何でしょうか? 難民からのプレッシャー? エルドアンの失策? 経済的不安?


I hope that the coup will fail. Assuming that is what happens, it will clear the way for total domination of Turkish politics by Erdogan. It will make it easier for him to make the constitutional changes he wants to make himself essentially the one and only politician deciding everything in the country.
Either way, the chances for democracy have receded even further.

このインタビュー記事は15日付だが、ロドリックは概ね同様の主旨のProject Syndicate論説を17日付で上げている。そこでは、エルドアンの権力を強化する結果になるにせよクーデターの失敗が望ましかった、という見解がよりはっきりと述べられている。

The coup’s failure will thus bolster Erdoğan’s authoritarianism and do little good for Turkish democracy. Had the coup succeeded, however, the blow to democratic prospects surely would have been more severe, with longer-term effects. That provides at least some reason to cheer.


Planes strafed civilians and attacked the parliament – very uncharacteristic behavior for the Turkish military outside areas of Kurdish insurgency. Social media were full of pictures of hapless (and apparently clueless) soldiers being pulled out of tanks and disarmed (and sometimes much worse) by civilian crowds – scenes I never thought I would see in a country that has come to hate military coups but still loves its soldiers.