The real coup II, or, Everything is secret

Zia Weise reports on about the ongoing purges in Istanbul:

It is easy to laugh this off as baseless paranoia, but stories abound of men calling the police on their government-criticizing wives, of village headmen keeping lists of suspicious residents, and neighbors informing on each other.

In Düzce, a town halfway between Istanbul and Ankara, a 60-year-old man was arrested on Thursday after a passer-by noticed him throwing away a box, in which the police later discovered books written by Fethullah Gülen.

Sounds familiar, and no better for that. The worst sign, perhaps, is the secrecy of the investigation and trials. According to a young lawyer defending a judge arrested by the regime, “everything is secret. We’re not even allowed to see most of the files.”

The unexpected section of the piece is this bit at the end:

…a water-seller… tells me his son spent his compulsory military service at the side of Akin Öztürk, the former Air Force commander named as the failed coup’s mastermind. “A few years ago, my son was his cook and taster… He always had to taste his food, the commander was so afraid of being poisoned.”

If true, it says something important about the mood in the army if the former head of its most prestigious branch, the air force, lived in fear of being poisoned. If true.

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