With the government of Mohammed Morsi now toppled we can clearly see the difference between the results of protests in Egypt and Turkey, namely a viable military.
Of course, there was a time not so long ago when the Turkish military could be counted on to jettison governments eager to embrace Islamism and were otherwise unable to maintain public order. Over a period of nearly four decades, the Turkish military initiated a coup d’etat. I’m not saying it was all roses. There were scores of arrests (including journalists), torture and death. That being said, civilian control was eventually restored following each of these coups.
But Turkish PM Erdogan has neutered the military and staffed it with loyalists. He has also arrested and tried military personnel involved with the ’97 coup and as well as the 1980 coup, including General turned President Kenan Evren. So when protests took place in Turkey last month there was no doubt as to who would prevail. It was only last week that Erdogan sought to amend the charter of the Turkish Armed Forces to prevent any future coups which could be undertaken against him. Erdogan might very well be Prime Minister for Life.
Not surprisingly, Morsi had forged strong relations with Erdogan. Had Morsi been able to follow Erdogan’s lead then perhaps this coup would not have been possible a decade from now.
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