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September 21, 2012, Friday

Will terrorism end? And other questions

The terrorist attack that killed 10 unarmed plainclothes soldiers and left 70 others wounded during a deployment on the Bingöl-Muş highway should be a warning to the government.

And this warning is futile if the killing of 33 unarmed privates who were returning from their leave in 1993 cannot be solved. The attack that killed 10 soldiers came shortly after eight police officers died in Bingöl. There are two possibilities. These incidents can be explained with negligence of duty, a malfunctioning system, carelessness, etc. Or the junta nested with the armed forces is still active to the east of the River Euphrates. The fact that the large coup trials are about to be concluded is another major factor. But the primary target is to deal a fatal blow to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) at a time when it expects it the least.

I believe the second possibility is stronger. The following questions reveal this:

1. Did the regime of military tutelage, also known as the "deep state," train and position Abdullah Öcalan as a leader for a significant portion of our Kurdish citizens? Was Öcalan assisted by the deep state as he purged the leading pacifist pro-Kurdish leaders before and after the Sept. 12, 1980 coup?

2. Who sent Öcalan to Syria? Why did pro-junta members of the tutelage wait 14 years to challenge Syria? If Öcalan had been ousted from Syria in 1984, rather than in 1998, 40,000 Kurds would not have been killed for being members of or supporting the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), and thousands of villages would not have been put on fire or evacuated and tens of thousands of innocent people would not have been tortured in Diyarbakır Prison to recruit new supporters for Öcalan. Turkey would have invested $500 billion in development instead of spending it on counterterrorism. The fact that Turkey has made strides in stability, democratization and welfare has made many groups inside and outside unhappy. Is it for this reason that those who paved the way for coups had made and are still making use of PKK terrorism?

3. Why is terrorism incited during the rule of governments that have high appeal among the general public? Are states of emergency extended to facilitate shadowy, dirty and bloody cooperation? Is it for this reason that civilian supervision or rule of law is avoided? Is it for this reason that thousands of inexplicable murders were covered up with a complete blackout? Is it the reason why this shadowy and ruthless clash has continued for years?

4. Why did the PKK start to launch attacks against the military after the establishment of the first government formed by Turgut Özal on Dec. 13, 1983, although it refrained from clashing with the military before and after the coup of Sept. 12? Why did the subversive generals pass the state of emergency law on Oct. 25, 1983, i.e., soon before they handed the administration over to civilians? The PKK launched its first attack on Aug. 15, 1984. The civilian government lost its initiative because of the terrorist attacks and the military's counterterrorism. Elections had been held and the country had transitioned to democracy, but the tutelage had managed to give a fine-tuning to the civilian government. The tutelage had won and democratization lost. The real loser was actually Turkey, wasn't it?

5. How come the terrorist attacks restarted with the AK Party's coming to power? Why? Was the PKK urged to take the stage once again after 2004, i.e., during the period of coup preparations that are currently under trial? How come the military outposts were raided by terrorists one after another despite many intelligence reports and images from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that were available at all times? Why was no one identified as responsible for negligence or faulty conduct in connection with these raids? Why wasn't anyone punished?

6. Whenever the tutelage is cornered, PKK terrorism gives it a kiss of life, and whenever the PKK is cornered, the junta rushes to its rescue. But why is the government unable to comprehend this bitter truth? What happened/is happening to the east of the Euphrates?

7. Terrorism is on the ascendancy, given a recent attack on a prosecutor. But will it end if we continue to fight the PKK? Will our counterterrorism efforts be successful if we fail to handle the matter of our neighbors and "friends" who lend support to terrorism? There is not one PKK, so we cannot fight it solely with arms.

8. Terrorism cannot be eliminated without eliminating the quagmire from which it springs. We stop and the PKK hits. Our military outposts, battalions, districts and district governor offices are being attacked. Will our counterterrorism be successful if we cannot enter the PKK camps and if we cannot turn our security forces into special ops forces?

Previous articles of the columnist