TURKEY HOSTED THE CHIEF OF THE STAFF OF UNITED STATES





The echoes of the unsuccessful coup attempt in Turkey on July 15 are still ongoing. In this atmosphere, leaders of Europe are still reluctant to visit Turkey; yet the first official visit from the western world has came from the United States. The Chief of the Staff of United States General Joe Dunford, went to Incirlik Military Base on the night of July 31 from Iraq and met with American military officers there. Incirlik Military Base is one of the most important strategic points on the air strikes that co-ordinated military forces led by US to fight with ISIS. Allegedly “Second in command” of the coup attempt Brigadier Bekir Ercan Van being the base commander, refuelling that was speculated to be done from the base and Ercan Van having meeting with US officials at the base numerous times have caused the voice “US is behind the coup attempt” to rose. Incirlik Military Base that has gained another level of importance due to the latest events being the first step of the General Dunford’s first step of his visit to Turkey has caused different and ungrounded attitudes to be born towards the visit.Chief of the Staff General Dunford who went to Ankara in this atmosphere visited the Parliament Building that has taken damage from the coup attempt with his counterpart Hulusi Akar and then met with Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım. US Department of Defence also announced the visit of Dunford which was welcomed with the protestors’ banners “Coup plotter Dunford get out of Turkey” and “Go home Dunford. Send us Fethullah”. Dunford has used the words “Just honoured to be inside. It is still standing. Little scratched, a little dented, but it' still here”. It has also been underlined that the coup attempt is being condemned by US as Dunford visits Turkey to support the democracy and the people of Turkey. Binali Yıldırım who commented on the topic spoke the words “It is important that the United States, our friend and ally, display a clear and decisive stance against this terrorist coup attempt against our nation and democracy”. In the meeting where the request of Fethullah Gülen to be returned to Turkey is renewed, it has been stated that Turkey-US cooperation on the war against ISIS is continuing and Incirlik Base will continue to serve with full capacity.By Altuğ Alsan