Monday, August 22, 2016
A Wedding In Turkey Bombed, 50 Dead - Whodunnit?
There was a particularly horrendous event in Gazientep, Turkey last night when a suicide bomb took th elives of 50 people at a wedding party and injured over 100 more. The suicide bomber involved was a young boy aged between 12-14 and the bomb was detonated electronically, probably by a throw away cell phone.
The screen shot above was from a video posted by one of the guests, who happened to have their phone out and pointed in the direction of the explosion at the exact moment of the blast. The video's available on Live Leak, but I see no reason to post it here.
The Turkish government was quick to blame ISIS. According to Turkey's leader Tayyip Erdoğan. "all the evidence points to ISIS."
What that evidence consists of hasn't been shared, nor, if things go as usual in today's Turkey, will it ever be.
But was it ISIS who pulled this off?
Certainly they're more than capable of it. But were they the ones who did this bombing? Let's look at a few interesting facts.
Since the attempted coup in Turkey, Erdoğan has responded brutally, using it as an excuse to remove or imprison as 'traitors' anyone questioning his virtually dictatorial rule. Think of this as Erdoğan's 'Night of the Long Knives.' Judges, opposition political activists, businessmen and journalists as well as military and police have been arrested, harshly interrogated and held for weeks without trial. Anyone whom has criticized or questioned the practices of Erdoğan and his loyal AKP stooges in any degree is being put out of the way on charges of 'treason.'
A major target has been anyone associated with Pennsylvania-based cleric Fethullah Gulen. Gulen is a former ally of Erdoğan and the AKP who broke with him over corruption charges and Erdoğan's increasingly undemocratic practices. Erdoğan has been quite vocal about calling Gulen and his followers 'terrorists' and is blaming them for the attempted coup, something Gulen denies being any part of. Erdoğan has been hammering the Obama Administration to extradite Gulen, saying there is 'no difference between Gulen and ISIS.'
A visit by Obama's Secretary of State to Turkey reportedly had Erdoğan's demand for Gulen's extradition as a major topic of discussion.
Another interesting thing to look at is how Erdoğan linked Gulen not just to ISIS but to the Kurdish PKK (The Kurdistan Worker's Party ) and PYD (The Democratic Union Party), claiming all of them are allied in a conspiracy to invade Turkey.
It's fairly obvious that, in my opinion, theories that Erdoğan pulled off the coup himself are (so far at least) without substance. But it is obvious that at the very least, he was fully aware of it in advance and allowed it to occur as an excuse to consolidate power and take out his political opposition. After all, Erdoğan himself has referred to the attempted coup as 'a gift from Allah'
So where does all this fit together? It begins to make sense when you find out that this was the wedding of a Kurdish member of The Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), who is in political opposition to Erdoğan and his AKP. According to the UK's Daily Mail, the wedding party was for one of its members, and the groom was injured.
Oddly enough, a lot of the terrorist attacks in Turkey seem to exclusively target Kurds. The deadliest was last October, when suicide bombers killed more than 100 people at a rally of pro-Kurdish and labor activists (read, Erdoğan's political opponents) in Ankara.
Another little detail to include in the mix. Turkey has not been fighting ISIS at all with its own military. They've merely been allowing U.S. airstrikes originating from the base America leases at Incirlik for a hefty baksheesh. Actually, Turkey's relationship with the Caliphate has been relatively benign. Among other things, Erdoğan has allowed the purchase of ISIS oil by various Turkish middlemen, helping the terrorist army fund its operations. And our 'NATO ally' Turkey has played a major role in allowing foreign fighters, weapons and oil to flow across the border, with Erdoğan only making a show of stopping the flow when it suits his interests.
While fighting ISIS may not be on Turkey's agenda, the Turkish military activity in Syria has actually been helping ISIS. It has exclusively focused on targeting the Kurdish militias, so far the most effective force on the ground battling ISIS. Erdoğan has always had designs on grabbing a slice of northern Syria for Turkey since the civil war started, but even more than that he wants to prevent an independent Kurdish enclave in Syria. Or anywhere else, for that matter. So in spite of the narrative about 'ISIS trying to increase ethnic tensions' the compliant Turkish press and Erdoğan's political stooges keep pushing,the truth is that both Turkey and ISIS are not only making a lot of money together, but essentially cooperating in fighting a mutual enemy, the Kurds.
Let's recap, shall we?
We have a horrendous bombing at the wedding celebration of some Erdoğan's political enemies at a time when he's cracking down brutally on any and all opposition. And at a time when he's pressuring the Obama Administration to extradite Fethullah Gulen to Turkey, a political rival he's branded as a terrorist and an ally of ISIS, there a convenient bombing that has the double benefit of terrorizing killing off some of his political opponents and providing added 'evidence' that Gulen is a terrorist that should be extradited back to the tender mercies of Erdoğan and what passes for Turkish justice.
For ISIS, the benefits of taking out some Kurds in Turkish territory pales when you factor in the risk factor of angering Erdoğan into a crackdown and losing a valuable market for their oil..unless they knew Erdoğan was in on it and signed off on the attack.
Again, ISIS is fully capable of this atrocity, but the facts on the ground point to Erdoğan being involved. Either he was fully aware ISIS was going to pull this off or the MİT (Turkish Secret Police) did this one on Erdogan's orders.