Was 15 July the USA’s “strategic error”?

By Erol Manisalı
Yayınlanma tarihi: 19 Eylül 2017 Salı, 16:40

Following 1990, everything was on track in Turkey and the region as far as the USA was concerned.
- In 1991, Ankara had been sorted out with the Hammer Force and Iraq’s partitioning and embroilment in civil war in 2003 was in sight.
- The Grand Middle East Project (GMEP) and the Kurdistan projects appeared to be proceeding in a mutually complementary manner. Ankara’s cooperation in the GMEP was superb.
- The anti-AmericanErbakan was sidelined on 28 February and more compliant (and more moderate) people had been made ready.
- Ecevit, who was resisting over the GMEP and Cyprus, had been sorted out with the break-up of the coalition with Bahçeli, and compliant political Islam had come to power.
- The Kurdish and Cyprus openings were fostering a rapport between Ankara and the USA. Denktaş became a persona non grata for Ankara.
- In 2004, Ankara, by means of the EU negotiating process (!), was made into capitalism’s concubine within the West without, for sure, being made an EU member. Ankara had virtually been placed on a war footing against pro-Moscow Assad.
With all these circumstances ticking along nicely in the USA’s favour, what was the meaning of pulling out FETO that it had been keeping in its pocket and launching it into action on 15 July against the new political Islamic rulership in Turkey?
Was this not a strategic error?
Or, did the USA wish by means of 15 July to take a short cut from the Turkey of Lausanne to Sevres?

Pushing it towards Russia – error or not?
Did the USA not push the Islamist rulership of necessity in the direction of Russia in the region? Moreover, with it directly supporting the PYD (PKK) in Syria, what was the meaning of coming into a state of war against Turkey?
The USA has pushed Erdoğan in the direction of Erbakanisation. Two reasons occur to me:
- It thought that it would directly and in one fell swoop transport Lausanne into Sevres in Turkey.
- Or, secondly, the edifice that FETO possessed under the aegis of the USA in the world and Turkey was of great importance to the USA. Its thinking was that, had it obtained a result on 15 July, its global returns would have been higher.
However, in the face of the failure of 15 July, the USA still did not put the venture at risk and decided once more to spread it out over time. Even if a result eluded it on 15 July, it thinks that the environment of internal chaos that it has caused in Turkey will be to its benefit in the end.
Parliament is not functioning, the separation of powers has vanished, polarisation domestically has reached a peak and everything has become dependent on a single person. There is an Ankara that is at Europe’s throat and is wrangling with everyone from Greece to the Gulf.
The USA must think that this is grist to its mill and, the way the ball is rolling, it will get to Sevres and Kurdistan. Erdoğan’s quarrels with the West and Europe and the Afghanification of Turkey must be to its benefit.
The tragicomic side of the affair is that the USA got Turkey and Greece at one another’s throats and sold vast quantities of arms. Today, Russia is doing the same thing when it comes to the S-300s and S-400s. The USA and Russia’s positions vis-a-vis the PKK resemble this to an extent.

So where do we stand?
With things stacking up like this from their perspective, we are in a position in which the only remaining choice is how we would prefer to die.
We, as Atatürk’s Turkey, must be ourselves, in conjunction with our parliament, political parties, civil society organisations, universities, media and business and labour milieus.
Otherwise, we will hurtle to and fro like a ping pong ball between the USA and Russia and the EU and China. For precisely this reason - to get to Sevres and Kurdistan - Atatürk’s enemies at home and abroad want to eradicate and destroy him, just as was the case a century ago. The greatness of our founding father manifested itself in the balance and synthesis that he established between the East and West.

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Erol Manisalı