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Monday, July 18, 2016

After the coup, Turkey turns against America | The Economist

Conspiracy theories in Turkey
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After the coup, Turkey turns against America
Turkish media and even government officials accuse America of being in on the plot
Jul 18th 2016 | ISTANBUL | Europe

SINCE the 1960s, whenever Turkey’s meddlesome generals have seized power, Turks have accused America of being responsible. After the botched coup attempt on July 15th by a cabal of mid-ranking generals and junior officers, the old reflex appeared again. Turkey’s labour minister, Suleyman Soylu, declared that America was behind the attempt to overthrow the country’s Islamist president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. (He vaguely cited the “activities” of unnamed American magazines as proof.) Pro-government media outlets teemed with conspiracy theories. In a column in Yeni Safak, a daily newspaper, Aydin Unal, an MP from Mr Erdogan’s Justice and Development party (AK), suggested that American army officers took part in the fighting. In previous decades such rants could be shrugged off. But this time they are part of an increasingly severe diplomatic crisis.

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