Washington’s claims that it was not behind the coup in Turkey and supports democracy in the country are “disturbing on multiple grounds,” says an American professor emeritus from the University of Minnesota.
Jemes Henry Fetzer was commenting Saturday on remarks by President Barack Obama at a joint press conference at the White House with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto on Friday.
"Any reports that we had any previous knowledge of a coup attempt, that there was any US involvement in it, that we were anything other than entirely supportive of Turkish democracy, are completely false," Obama said.
In a phone interview with Press TV, Fetzer rejected the idea that there is real democracy in Turkey and that it is represented by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is “bizarre.”
“This is not a democratic government,” he said, outlining the measures the president has taken to crack down on those behind the attempted coup on July 15.
“The very idea that Erdogan would be regarded as representing democratic forces is bizarre,” Fetzer said. “In fact, it’s very clear that he has visions of recreating the Ottoman empire.”
Tens of thousands of soldiers, security officers, judges, prosecutors, civil servants and academics have been detained or suspended from their jobs following the failed coup.
On the other hand, the political commentator noted, the United States has a “vast intelligence agency and that it should not have known the coup was coming is very disturbing in and of itself,” adding that Russian authorities had reportedly tipped off Ankara of an imminent attempt.


US President Barack Obama (R) meets with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington on July 22, 2016.
Obama said Friday that the US prior knowledge is just a “rumor” that could threaten “what is a critical alliance and partnership” with Turkey.
With such a statement, Fetzer said, the US has “once again embarrassed itself,” as Obama’s remarks suggest that “the president himself is a turkey.”
Erdogan has accused US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, who has many followers in Turkey and abroad, of masterminding last Friday’s failed coup, in which at least 246 people were killed and more than 2,100 others sustained injuries. Gulen denies the charge and has condemned the coup.
Washington says it is ready to extradite Gulen if Ankara can offer any evidence proving his involvement.

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