Coups, Conspiracies, and the Uphill Battle for Democracy in Turkey

This policy outlook explores the use of military coups as an extension of US foreign policy. It also examines the legacy of coups and attempted coups in Turkey.

There are various means and instruments employed by states to meddle in the affairs of other countries with economic, military and foreign policy interventions being the most common. Moreover, there are more subtle and indirect forms of intervention designed to extern influence on targeted states such as tacit support for military coups. Since rising the status of superpower in the wake of the Second World War, the United States has been among the most prolific in deploying such tools. The impacts of such interventions go well beyond their immediate political impact, with previous researching showing the longer-term toll on economic growth, political stability and democratic progress in targeted states. In this context, this policy outlook explores the use of military coups as an extension of US foreign policy. It also examines the legacy of coups and attempted coups in Turkey with a particular focus on how an underground terror network attempted to topple Turkey’s democratically elected government on July 15, 2016, with the suspected assistance from the US intelligence community and the tacit acceptance of American political officials.

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