How does this end? The Turkish government is lashing out in all directions, with a high-ranking member of the Erdogan government accusing Washington of directly helping to foment the putsch. Turkish Labor Minister Suleyman Soylu bluntly claimed over the weekend that “the U.S. is behind this coup attempt.” The comments “come on top of the long-standing U.S. criticism of Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian tendencies, which include opening roughly 2,000 legal cases against political opponents, journalists, comedians, and ordinary Turks accused of insulting the president,” FP’s Yochi Dreazen writes.Judging from the reaction to the coup's failure in the U.S. opinion pages, the labor minister appears to be on the money. The Gray Lady's unsigned editorial today calls Erdogan's reaction to the coup attempt a "countercoup" (see "The Countercoup in Turkey").
If the U.S. was involved it must have been in a passive role. The favored U.S. method of regime change after the shelving of "shock and awe" during the Obama administration is the color revolution format witnessed in Kiev's Maidan or the Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong. In a color revolution there has to be a mass of protesters to act as a foil for the coup plotters. The scheme is to have the protesters elicit a crackdown by security forces. The police overreaction ignites the rebellion. But there was no popular uprising here. There were no Gezi Park protests of three years earlier.
In order for this to work the coup plotters had to take out Erdogan. When they failed to do this the coup could not succeed. Consider this from McLeary and Rawnsley:
Commando raids, F-16s. Some critical details of the scope of the insurrection emerged on Sunday, which included a daring special operations raid on the coastal resort where Erdogan had been staying which just failed to nab the leader, and a harrowing incident where two rebel-flown F-16 fighters followed the president’s plane on its way to Istanbul, locking radars on the jet, but failing to fire.
As the purge of the military continued on Sunday, one of those arrested was Gen. Bekir Ercan Van, the chief of Incirlik Air Base, from which the U.S. military flies missions over Iraq and Syria against the Islamic State. Reports have emerged claiming Van asked U.S. officials at the base for asylum, but was refused. The Greek government also finds itself in a tough spot after eight Turkish officers flew a helicopter to Greece in a bid for asylum. Turkey has demanded their extradition.An attempt is being made to rewrite the U.S. reaction to the coup as one of immediate and fulsome support for the Turkish government. This is not how it went down in real time. Obama and Kerry were mum until it was clear that Erdogan would survive. Then they expressed their support.