Turkish President Erdoǧan has blamed the 2016 coup attempt on the Islamic Gülen movement. Fethullah Gülen is a cleric and former ally of Erdoǧan. Historically, Turkish military coups were carried out by secular elements in the army, aiming to protect the secular heritage of Atatürk. That's quite different from the beliefs of Gülen. Why does Erdoǧan blame the coup attempt on Gülen this time, rather than (perhaps more credibly) secular army elements who want to stop the increasing influence of islam in government?
Historically, Turkish military coups were carried out by secular elements in the army, aiming to protect the secular heritage of Atatürk.
It should be noted that in the last years Erdoǧan and his former ally Gülen tried to change this. So Gülen really has some support in the Turkish army.
Next, Gülen is pro-American. And USA continues helping to the Kurds, which is a threat to Turkey. So Erdoǧan is eager to throw yet another accusation on USA.
Next, the ongoing repressions in Turkey are not against only the army. Erdoǧan is going to take care of all his enemies in Turkey, and Gülen is the strongest among them.
There is two meaning of "Why" here; 1- excuse for blaming Gulen , 2- aim of blaming Gulen. The answer for both questions starts with "Gulen is enemy of Erdoǧan."
1- excuse: Gulen is enemy of Erdoǧan. So Erdoǧan claims "my enemy wants to overthrow me". This make sence regarding Gulen's many followers in the air force, police, judiciary,... .
aim: Gulen is enemy of Erdoǧan. Erdoǧan wants to eliminate this powerful obstacle.
First of all the statement below is debatable.
Historically, Turkish military coups were carried out by secular elements in the army, aiming to protect the secular heritage of Atatürk
The 1980 coup is supported by US also (Henze cabled Washington, saying, "our boys did it). Secular heritage was strong and there was no strong conservative political party. The only conservative party's votes were around %8 percent.
Conservatives and cults got stronger after 80 coup mostly because the ideologies which opposes conservative like socialism and nationalism was hit badly(650,000 people were under arrest.1,683,000 people were blacklisted.230,000 people were tried in 210,000 lawsuits.7,000 people were recommended for the death penalty.). And with US support "Political Islam" became more and more stronger.
Cults begin to come from underground like Gulen's cult. Cults have natural hate against secularism and Kemalism. They even begin to put their own people to military from 1986. The members were given the questions for entrance exams and just excelled in higher ranks.
In year 1997 Turkish military memorandum (I wish it never happened) secularist forced the convervative party to give up. At the same time Gulen fled to US. And this guy(Gulen) who even can't speak English is living in a large Villa in Pennsylvania meanwhile I can hardly get a tourist visa to US(feels fishy is not it).
When Erdoğan came to power they were in cooperation with Gulen. Which made it even easier for Gulen to invade Turkish Army. In 2009 our Chief of the General Staff of Turkish Army made a speech which stated army situation about being invaded by Gulen's cult.
But Gulen's cult was so strong that for the first time in Turkish history head of army was sent prison and accused of being a terrorist.
Many liberals warned society and talked in media like even in 1999 like Turkan Saylan who died while she was prisoned. One of the most sad events were The Imam's Army book by Ahmet Şık was banned and he was also put into prison. And at time he was highly critistized by Erdoğan's political party AKP.
I am not a Erdoğan fan boy and I am not a conservative person but for this case from 2012 Erdoğan begin to oppose Gulen's cult. In year 2012 Erdogan ordered to remove private schools in which Gulen was brain washing highschool kids(I unfortunately went one of them luckily for short period like 2 weeks they were making us watching Gulen's video etc..). This struggle escalated between Erdogan and Gulen. Gulen's cult aimed to convert Turkey in to a theocratic goverment with help of US(he is still living in US).
Side Note: I am very sorry for last video is in Turkish. She says how bad situation is in schools. And this brain washed kids(by Gulen's cult) must be rehabilitated.