The Turning of Turkey
By Matt Ward
A little under two weeks ago, elements within the Turkish army, Air Force and police attempted a coup d’état against President Tayyip Erdogan’s expanding dictatorial rule. As with other recent events in the Middle East, what is happening in Turkey right now may well have genuine prophetic significance.
The plot itself failed quickly and catastrophically. It was an ignominious failure. The great ramifications of the utter shambles of this coup will be extremely severe for all those involved.
And Turkey itself is now in the grip of a full and wide-reaching purge process.
In every conceivable way this coup was an utter failure. Instead of relieving Erdogan of his increasingly authoritarian position, providing Turkey with the fresh hope of a new beginning, this coup has solidified and augmented a potential dictator’s rule.
Instead of ending his hold on Turkey, this failed coup d’état has strengthened Erdogan’s cast iron grasp on a deeply divided nation, a nation that is crucial to the stability of the Middle East and the world.
Instead of returning Turkey to a secular government, as the plotters desired, the failed coup has ensured that Erdogan’s increasing Islamization of Turkey will be an eventual success. Secularism in Turkey is now dead and the full and open Islamization of government, institutions, universities, schools and all aspects of the military is now fully underway.
The plotters themselves—in their botched actions, have ensured the very thing they were trying so desperately to avoid. This failed plot has now given Erdogan the opportunity he needed to replace Turkey’s Parliamentary democracy with a powerful executive presidency centered exclusively on him alone.
Basic and unforgivable tactical errors resulted in the coup’s swift failure. Despite the rebel forces quickly and easily overrunning all the infrastructure necessary to successfully implement and run a government, they neglected the basics.
The rebel forces swiftly took control of the Turkish Parliament buildings, overran all the key TV network buildings, closed all main airports and airspace, they used air power to consistency “buzz” Istanbul and other key cities, asserting their dominance and control.
They rolled tanks into key positions cutting off and controlling the capital of Istanbul, including taking all the key bridges servicing the city and they controlled all other ports and points of access.
What they so spectacularly failed to do was to secure and incapacitate the lynchpin that underpinned the whole coup itself—President Erdogan. They left him with his freedom.
There was no attempt to control Erdogan, his movements or his actions.
This most fundamental of errors guaranteed the failure of the coup from the very beginning.
This error allowed Erdogan, with just his mobile phone, to launch and manage one of the finest counter-coup actions witnessed in modern times.
A basic military tactical error and now Turkey will reap the whirlwind. From a position of abject weakness, Erdogan has emerged emboldened, empowered and thirsty for vengeance. What we are witnessing right now in Turkey is the full and complete takeover of a once democratic nation by a ruler who has strong dictatorial ambitions
Up to point of this writing, Erdogan has purged 1577 university deans, 8000 police, 9000 military, at least 20,000 other civil servants including hundreds of judges and over 21,000 teachers. Erdogan has authorized the closure of 1,229 charities or foundations, 1,043 private schools, 35 medical institutions and the full, immediate closure of 15 universities.
The far-reaching nature of these actions, and the sheer number of people, organizations and institutions implicated and involved—suggest that these actions have nothing to do with any hard evidence of disloyalty at all, but rather that this is simply a comprehensive purge using preplanned and pre-prepared lists of people and actions.
Democratic freedom in Turkey is dying before our very eyes, and the world remains silent. Consider the most recent comments from Erdogan, the leader of an apparently free society that operates under the rule of law, when referring to political prisoners in Turkey in the wake of the coup:
“Why should I keep them and feed them in prisons for years to come—that’s what the people say. The people now have the idea, after so many terrorist incidents, that these terrorists should be killed, that’s where they are, they don’t see any other outcome.”
To that end it is widely believed that Erdogan’s administration now might well consider summarily executing up-to 13,000 people, those viewed as the most extreme enemies of the state. All of this, remember—without trial or due process.
Ominously, Turkey has just withdrawn their membership of the European Human Rights Convention. And Europe and the world continue to remain silent.
Further cementing his personal power grab, Erdogan has granted himself emergency powers, which will last for an indefinite period of time. He has immediately increased the amount of time prisoners can be held without charge to an almost indefinite period, and hinted that he will now pass laws and suspend civil rights without going through the inconvenience of waiting for a democratic parliament to approve his wishes.
Erdogan is turning Turkey into a totalitarian state. When questioned about these actions last week, Erdogan’s response was blunt and to the point, “I only want the same powers that Hitler had…” (Whatever that means.)
“The cleansing is continuing and we remain very determined,” Erdogan continued, describing the rebels themselves as being a “virus” and a “cancer” upon Turkey. His words are eerily reminiscent of Adolf Hitler’s in 1930s Germany—with talk of people being nothing more than “a virus” or “a cancer” upon society.
Dehumanizing people is the first step toward genocide.
Whether Erdogan is actually prepared to go through with the horror show of mass public executions remains to be seen. Whether he intends to solidify his position and become an open dictator, or whether he will use his emergency powers to abolish democracy in Turkey, also remains to be seen.
What is becoming increasingly clear however, is that all of this will have very real consequences for the region and the world.
The first major consequence will be the relationship Turkey has with the United States of America. It’s looking increasingly like it may be over. Prophetically this makes sense. Turkey is one nation that will invade Israel with Gog and his horde, described in Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39.
Currently, the United States simply has too much influence over Turkish security and foreign policies for that to happen. That is now changing rapidly and U.S. influence will only continue to wane in the coming weeks as the U.S. continues to refuse Turkish demands for the extradition of exiled preacher, Fethullah Gulen, whom Erdogan blames exclusively and entirely for inspiring the coup.
To emphasize how deep this breakdown is, Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, issued a thinly veiled threat toward America only last week when he claimed “any country” supporting the man they believe is the coup’s mastermind will face “all out war.”
The man saying this isn’t a simple government official, he is Turkey’s prime minister.
In terms of Turkey’s foreign and security policies, a failed coup can have just as much if not more of an impact upon decision making as a successful one would.
In light of this failed coup, the Turkish military will now undergo the painful process of purging any supporters of Gulen, whom the United States will not now hand over from amongst their ranks. This will undoubtedly effect morale and cohesion at just the time when the Turkish military is desperately needed to fight against ISIS in Syria and Iraq—as well as in securing the Turkish border areas to stop the flow of foreign jihadists flocking across to ISIS.
Prophetically, recent events in Turkey are highly significant. At some point in the near future Turkey will join an Islamic alliance, headed by Russia that will sweep down through the Middle East straight into the holy land of Israel itself. Once there they will intend to take a spoil from God’s holy inheritance, but will be stopped and then destroyed by God Himself on the mountains of Israel.
The Islamization of Turkey, it’s institutions, it’s judiciary, it’s government and crucially its military—which this coup heralds, hastens that soon approaching day. And because I believe the war of Ezekiel 38 and 39, known as the Gog and Magog war is a pre-Rapture event, that would also mean that this coup is yet another strong indicator that the Rapture draweth nigh.