Was the failed Turkish coup an inside job? Conspiracy theorists blame Erdogan, Israel, and the West for Friday night's chaos

Published July 17th, 2016 - 02:41 GMT
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with Turkish flags in the background (AFP)
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with Turkish flags in the background (AFP)

 The Turkish military-led coup that erupted suddenly in the evening of July 15th appears to have ended in total failure. The nighttime standoff that saw the bridges over the Bosphorus closed and the Istanbul International Airport beseiged concluded the following morning not with a bang – but a whimper. The smoke has cleared and order appears restored. Thousands of soldiers and officers have been detained and the major conspirators arrested.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called the Coup a “gift from god” and thanked the putschists for revealing themselves in time for a “clean sweep” of the military and government. In fact, one of Erdogan’s first orders of business was purging some 2,745 judges from the government and detaining 6,000 Turks on charges of possible treason.

This round up of dissenters is a bit too convenient for some observers, who have accused Erdogan of not just opportunism – but conspiracy. Many have taken to social media to voice their thoughts on what some are calling a “false flag” operation.


A political cartoon circulating on social media websites depicts Erdogan as a plotting opportunist.

Some observers have drawn a parallel between Friday's coup and the 1933 Reichstag fire that Hitler exploited to consolidate his rule in Germany.


While many have accused Erdogan of creating the coup, conspiracy theorists have not left out the usual suspects. Israel and the United States have also been accused of fomenting rebellion in Turkey, especially on Arabic-language social media.

 Original Post: "The Israeli zionist newspaper “Ma’arif”: “The attempted coup that happened in Turkey was nothing else other than a conspiracy conducted by Erdogan to become a sole ruler without exception.”

Reply: "This has been said since the morning. Seriously. But nobody believes it except for the Jews".



“The zionist journalist Nechil Berber: The long time that passed before important states denounced the coup is evidence of a conspiracy against Turkey. Accurate.”

Some Twitter users pointed out the connection that one of the coup’s ringleaders has to the State of Israel.

"The leader of the failed coup, Aken Ozturk, was once the military attache in Israel.”

In the end, some took a more lighthearted look at the situation.

The picture reads: “How sweet of you. But don’t do it again!”

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