Anyone following the news the past couple of days may have noticed that the current government of Turkey has arrested a number of former military offices and accused them of plotting a coup. Consider this report on the al-Jazeera website today:

The action over the alleged plot, known as Operation Sledgehammer, has seen Turkey’s largest-ever crackdown on the military.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s prime minister, said on Friday that no one should consider themselves “above the law”, in what was seen as a warning to the army.

“Those who make plans behind closed doors to crush the people’s will must see that from now on they will face justice,” he told a gathering of his Justice and Development Party (AKP).

“No one is above law, no one has impunity,” he said.

At a time when Turkey is trying to show that it’s Asiatic geography and Islamic polity overlay do not block entry in the EU, this may be a political move to show that democracy has trumped the long history of secular military hegemony. Why Turkey would still want to join the EU, given the debt crisis in neighboring Greece, is another issue. But I can think of several reasons why Turkey should be given top priority for entry into the regional entity that the Ottomans never fully conquered. There but for a successful capture of Vienna goes a different history, as even Martin Luther knew at the time. I think the best rationale is that modern Turkey is just as crazy and mixed up as the diverse nations currently allied in the EU. If you want proof, I suggest you look no further than Youtube. Check out the final scenes of the Turkish made-over version of Star Wars here on Youtube. But first check out the trailer. Eat your heart out, Flash Gordon fans…

Luke R. E. Publican