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Saturday, July 16

Is Baghdad Bob loose in Turkey? (Updated 3:15 AM EDT)

UPDATE 
Here's the podcast at John Batchelor's site that I mentioned below: (Discussion title: Erdogan vs the Coupmasters & the Risks of Unstable Turkey. Gregory Copley, Defense & Foreign Affairs)

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Breaking News banner headline from CNN: "President Recep Tayyip Erdogan declares military coup; 42 people killed in Ankara Turkish media says." Sputnik chimes in with the headline, Sixty People Killed in Turkey Amid Failed Military Coup.

But wait! The earnest reporters for CNN's latest report (12:01 AM EDT) aren't sure exactly what is going on and report ongoing fighting:
As dawn broke in Istanbul on Saturday, Turkey's largest city, it was still unclear whether an attempt by the military to wrest control from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had been successful.
A defiant Erdogan addressed crowds in the city, telling them that the coup had been quashed. "The government is in control," he told supporters.
[...]
While senior government voices were insisting the coup attempt was under control, the situation remains confusing. Reports from witnesses and posted on social media indicate conflict was ongoing.
Witness Katherine Cohen, an American who's staying in an Istanbul hotel, told CNN she heard a loud explosion as the sun rose, and gunfire and jets all through the night.
Erdogan addressed Fethullah Gulen, a cleric and former ally who now lives in exile in Pennsylvania, who he accused of masterminding the coup.
[...]
And Sputnik slipped this update into its report:
UPDATE: According to NTV, Erdogan’s residence in Ankara has been attacked by military aircraft of the coup attempt participants. Earlier, a calm was reported in Ankara, military aviation stopped flying over the city. However, intense gunfire exchange resumed soon after.

The president said one chopper attacking the presidential residence has been downed. Smoke is rising over the explosion site at the moment, NTV noted.
To sort through the confusion John Batchelor sequestered Gregory Copley to give a crash course for John's radio audience on what is actually happening with the coup, which is nothing like Sputnik and CNN are describing. However, what is actually happening is a little complicated, although Gregory explains it as clearly as it can be explained. So settle yourself -- and take notes; hear? What he has to say is very important. 

Not to give away with the plot (if you'll pardon the expression) but if this coup was mounted by the Gulenists and it's successful, it's pretty much exchanging a less scary Islamist government for the one now in place with some democratic window dressing. But if it was mounted by the Kamalists (Gregory explains who they are) and it's successful, humanity will stand a good chance of recovering from much of the worst state-sponsored terrorism of the past decade.

What are the chances of a Kemalist coup succeeding at this time, if that's what it is? The odds don't look very good to me at this moment. But as Gregory explains Erdogan has mounted a propaganda campaign to make it seem to the international press that he's in a much stronger position than he actually is.

Here is the podcast of the discussion -- what the heck? It's not posted yet! SacrĂ© bleu! Well, a good prep for Gregory's crash course is Long War Journal's Tom Joscelyn giving a hair-raising crash course to John Batchelor's audience, also last night, on the Erdogan regime's relationship with Al Qaeda. This podcast has been posted; the discussion starts at the 9:50 minute mark. Check back here, or at the podcast page, in an hour or so for Copley's discussion. 

Ah, I see it's almost 2 in the morning here in Washington. If you are also on Eastern Time, and it should turn out that you have nothing to do after you listen to Tom's crash course and you're twiddling your thumbs waiting for the podcast of Gregory's crash course I have a suggestion: 

You could always entertain yourself by reading Long War Journal Editor-in-Chief Bill Roggio's testimony on July 12 before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade and the Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific. The topic is "Pakistan: Friend or Foe in the Fight Against Terrorism?" Let me tell you, Bill gave those committee members an earful.  

That should keep you awake if it doesn't give you nightmares. 

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