This weekend Hurriyet has published a very interesting interview with Richard Moore, the U.K. ambassador to Ankara, who comments on the recent attempted military coup against the elected government. Moore is emphatic that there was no intervention on behalf of the U.K. or United States, and also elaborates his opinion on Gülen’s involvement.
You are a sort of Turkish expert and you know these Gülenist people. Have you ever thought that these people could attempt such a thing?
Look, having spoken to senior officials, to senior ministers here, I don’t think anyone understood the degree to which they appear to have penetrated the military. I think there is a quite good deal of understanding that they had infiltrated other institutions, particularly the police and judiciary. We saw that in the Ergenekon and Balyoz cases. But I think we were all surprised at the scale of it in the military. But is it a complete surprise? No. There have been reports of Gülenists trying to get in the military as early as the 1990s.
So, I don’t find it difficult to understand. Again, in private, I have heard from Turkish ministers that others apart from Gülenists were probably involved in the coup; not every single officer discharged from the army is likely to have been a Gülenist. Clearly there are people involved in the coup for other motivations which should come clearer in the coming weeks. Perhaps some of those other people did not know that some of their brother officers were Gülenists; no doubt some of that detail will come out. But do I have any trouble in accepting the Gülenist movement played a part in this? No, I don’t frankly.
The full interview is well worth reading.