Earlier today, when we commented on Turkey's crackdown of the alleged "mastermind" behind Friday's military coup (besides the US, of course), we noticed something unexpected. While initially, the Turkish national media, Anadolu news agency, reported that the the ex-commander of the Turkish Air Force, Akin Ozturk, had pleaded guilty to organizing the coup attempt, saying "I started to act aiming to stage a coup," this report by Anadolu...
... was promptly scrubbed, and replaced by its complete opposite, when CNN Turk reported that "Ozturk, who remained in active duty, has denied he was involved and insisted he worked to quell the uprising in statements he made to Turkish media."
Furthermore, shortly after Anadolu tweeted its original "news" which included the commander's quote shown above, the tweet in question was quickly deleted and scrubbed.
We were confused because this was a rather significant error. However, it wasn't only us. As it turns out AP, which was also keeping track of the fluid narrative, encountered the same inconsistency, and moments ago reported the following retraction.
So what is the latest official story, at least until it changes once more. Here is the latest from AP:
Turkey's state-run news agency says a former Air Force commander accused of a role in a failed coup Friday night has been placed under arrest by the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor's Office along with 25 others.
The government has accused Gen. Akin Ozturk of being the ringleader of the coup, though he told prosecutors he did not plan or direct it. The Anadolu news agency, relying on prosecutors, initially said Ozturk had confessed to a role in the coup, but later retracted that report.
So why did Turkey initially cast blame on the former Air Force commander only to scrub the story? Simple: it found an easier way to scapegoat Erdogan's US-based nemesis, Fethullah Gulen. Namely, after the fact, the "prosecutor" decided that it is far better for Ozturk to blame the "Gulen movement" than to take responsibility personally... which he has promptly done.
"I don't know who planned or directed it. According to my experiences, I think that the (Gulen movement) attempted this coup. But I cannot tell who within the Armed Forces organized and carried it out. I have no information. I have fought against this structure (meaning Gulen movement)," Ozturk was quoted as saying.
We wonder how much physical intervention was required to have Ozturk change his story so dramatically, and worse, why the Turkish government allowed such a dramatic error to occur, one which confirms that Erdogan is now openly fabricating the narrative as he sees fit, all with the intent of bringing down even more public anger on the 77 year old cleric based in Pennsylvania. .