Turkish media divided over Ergenekon detainments

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Turkish media divided over Ergenekon detainments
Oluşturulma Tarihi: Temmuz 02, 2008 14:01

Turkish commentators and columnists seem divided over the detainment of more than 20 people, including former commanders, journalists, and business leaders, over their alleged links with a gang that aims to pave the way for a military coup.

Haberin Devamı

Pro-AKP and leftist media organs hailed the operation, saying it is a step forward to enhance democracy.

However mass media organs were a bit more cautious and cited the lack of an indictment in the operation. Those commentators also sounded their concerns that the Ergenekon operation is turning into a kind of "witch hunt" and is being used by the AKP government to suppress its opponents.

Here are some extracts from Turkish columnists and commentators:

"Millions of people agree on the same concern. 'Could this happen to me as well?' This is called the mass spirit of fascism. This is the point where the AKP had brought the country. The revenge of the closure case. In 1944 the Turanists, in 1951 the Communists... The same historic events that remind of the mass detainments in the military coup periods. And the name of Tuesday's events is: in 2008 anti-AKP'ists. AKP has taking revenge for the closure case. And it does not hesitate to throw the country into a very difficult period."

Haberin Devamı

"As a result, for the first time in Turkey's history a legal process has started against an organization, which consists of high-level retired army officials, allegedly making preparations to overthrow an elected government with a coup. This is happening for the first time in Turkey. At the end, Turkey advances on its way to democracy and buries such attempts in the darkness of history.

The Ergenekon operation had started with the discovery of hand grenades in a house in Istanbul, which triggered the claims of an illegal gang. A year after a magazine claimed high-level army officers are in preparations for a military coup, based on the diaries of a former Navy Forces Commander. When we look at the detainments, those separate allegations seemed to be merged under the same operation. And when you add opponents of the AKP, including Ilhan Selcuk, Sinan Aygun and Mustafa Balbay, we get the impression that there is an attempt to merge three different events. This picture makes us to think that we are in the middle of a "confrontation" that could turn into a point that could sour everything.

Haberin Devamı

When you look at the speculation, on one hand there is a closure case against the AKP, and on the other, there is the Ergenekon case. But we have every single detail, including the indictment, the defenses, prosecutors, the judgments etc, in the closure case while the Ergenekon case remains a mystery. A big question mark dominates everything in the country. Everybody is afraid and concerned. Everybody keeps asking the same question: What will happen? Where is this country heading?

It is important to reach the plotters of a military coup under -what could be termed as- the last wave of Ergenekon detainments. If a relationship between the coup planners and the armed implementers of the Ergenekon gang is discovered, then Turkey will likely settle an account with the coup promoters for the first time in its modern history.

Haberin Devamı

For the first time in our history two retired generals were taken into custody from their homes in a military housing facility. I think this operation is the finale of the first curtain in Turkey's transformation process. A new period is now set to start. The state organs would be re-structured in line with the new social form, the power would change hands in line with this structure, and relations with the world would normalize. This operation signals an end to a period in our history. And this is a good sign.


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