“In contrast to totalitarianism, a democracy can face and live with the truth about itself.”
A story of a night when a nation stood with dignity and grace against betrayers while paying a great price to preserve its sovereignty. Factions of Turkish military that were linked to Gulen Estero cult try a coup attempt led by a terrorist organization leader or a pious religious cleric, Fetullah Gulen.
On July 15, 11:25 pm, a military group started seizing airports, strategic locations marking their prime targets as TRT (home of Turkey’s national broadcasting), Turkish parliament and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. One hundred soldiers entered TRT building at midnight as it was their prime target, they started taking over channels, and they forced an anchor to report a martial law. The statement said: “The country is currently under a state of emergency. Until a second announcement is made, the curfew stands”.
At 3:20 am troops plotters, flounce at President’s hotel. Fortunately, he left the hotel 15 minutes before the military rebuke, and the hit squad that consisted of putschists missed Erdogan by a few minutes.
From an undisclosed location after midnight, Erdogan addressed the nation via face time on CNN Turk orating; “As a nation lets gather, let’s see what canthey do, while we’re all here. To this day, I’ve not seen a force stronger than that the will of people.” He asked the Turkish to come out of their houses to the streets. A call from Tayyip Erdogan and people poured on the streets unaware of what was going to happen next. A journalist quotes; “It was like coming to a festival.” Turks poured out into the streets despite the sound of explosions and air raids. Soldiers blocked Istanbul’s iconic Bosporus Bridge that connected the Anatolian side to the European side of the country.
Meanwhile the Turkish parliament was also bombed by a fighter jet. Turkey had already experienced coups and military interventions after 1925. But this time a special call blaring from the mosques and a face time from Erdogan took millions to streets. Crowds resisted air bombardments, tank fire and with the help of loyalist soldiers and police forces defeated the coup in a matter of hours. Videos of Turkish citizens went viral as they were seen standing in front of tanks, even as they got run over by them. Unarmed citizens suppressed soldiers; coup plotters surrendered after a failed coup attempt. Turkey’s reaction against the coup showed that it was still a unified nation and a family, as they succeeded in defending the institution of democracy. At 2:51 am, national intelligence of the country claimed that the coup was over. A total of 251 people were killed, and around 2,200 others were wounded as the coup plotters fired on people. Around 35 alleged coup plotters were also killed by citizens. Only days after the coup attempt, on July 22, the Turkish government declared a state of emergency “to be able to remove swiftly all the elements of the terrorist organization involved in the coup attempt”.
As of July 20 2016, the purge already had seen over 45,000 military officials, police officers, judges, governors and civil servants arrested or suspended, including 2,700 judges, 15,000 teachers, and every university dean in the country. As a result, 163 generals and admirals were also detained, around 45% of the Turkish military’s total.
The exemplary leadership and unity among citizens of the country showed what a nation truly is and how vital democracy was for them. Erdogan stated, “Until all coup plotters are brought to justice, we will not quit going after them.” July 15 will always be remembered as a night of valor for every Turkish citizen that supported democracy and stood up for the sovereignty of their homeland.
“Presuming they fail, Erdogan authoritarianism gets a lot stronger,”