Some early reactions.
The way things went down just make no sense. The early stages sounded rather impressive, at least the way the reports made it sound. Then the whole thing just collapsed like a joke. More recent reports, based on closer observations of the goings on, suggest that the coup was very badly planned and amateurishly conducted. This does not like what I’d expect from a Turkish coup.
Second, the response by Erdogan supporters did not seem so spontaneous. I realize that AKP is quite popular, especially in rural Turkey, but in Istanbul? Izmir? This seems a bit fishy.
As to accusations of who was responsible, the government seemed to know exactly whom to consign blame to: round up the usual enemies of government party. A little convenient.
Some people on Twitter were very quick to raise speculations that this was staged. I don’t know what to think. Conspiracies are not that common. Successful conspiracies that can keep its secrets even less so. On the other hand, nobody expected a Turkish coup and nobody was looking and things seem awfully convenient for Erdogan right now.
In addition, of course, he now has endorsements of all these dissidents, too. sincere were they? Everyone was speculating that, when the dust settles and if Erdogan is still in charge, anyone whom he had grudge with will be implicated in the coup…and I suppose the dissidents didn’t have much love for a military dictatorship anyways. Still, this makes Erdogan the national unity leader, too. Wonderful.
Earlier, I had written about a strange paradox: authoritarian regimes are usually fairer and more “liberal,” especially towards minorities. Most “democratic” activists mobilize the dominant social group who did not receive what they “deserve,” at the expense of the out groups. They are “democratic,” but inherently illiberal. This was/is true with Aung San in Burma, the Shi’ite leaders in Iraq, Morsi in Egypt, Erdogan in Turkey, BJP in India, and yes, Trump in United States. This is a sobering thought, since what will take place in Turkey, whether this was a false flag operation or not, definitely will not be “democratic” as we imagine it.