The Turkish government’s crackdown on protestors is more than vaguely reminiscent of Hosni Mubarak’s pre-“Arab Spring” action against dissidents. We know how that turned out human rights-wise. (If that’s enough of a warning, the Kurds can clue you in.) Turkey’s gun laws are just about what you’d expect them to be, too. There is no Constitutional right to keep and bear arms; only gun owners licensed by the Ministry of the Interior may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition . . .

Civilians are not allowed to possess semi-automatic firearms. While there are an estimated nine million [legally] privately held guns in Turkey, that’s equal to 0.04 per 100 people. Bottom line: the Turkish government doesn’t fear its people. Which leaves them free to repress them as they see fit. Which they are busy doing.

Another one of countless cautionary tales on civilian disarmament’s effects on life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Past, present and future.

Want to start a different discussion or ask a question on another topic? Click here to go to TTAG’s Free Fire Zone.

22 Responses to This is What Happens to A Disarmed Populace: Turkey Edition

    • Except that the current Turkish prime minister has built his reputation on taming the military, so they aren’t exactly his allies. He may have to cede some political power back to them if his robocops can’t control the opposition. At any rate things could get ugly over there. Good insight on what is occurring over their can be found here…http://www.city-journal.org/2013/eon0603cb.html

  1. If the protests in Turkey were truly serious, the Kurds (historically very anti-government) would be protesting too. Guess what? They are not. The New Yorker had a good article about this if you care to do a search. The key reason is that this is a clash over religion rather than any real government over-reach.

    What we are seeing in Turkey is an angry secular minority lashing out at Erdogan for what they see as Islamization of the country. For example, Erdogan, much to the anger of secularists, wants to implement alcohol laws similar to Georgia, USA… no late-night alcohol sales, prohibition of sales on Friday, etc. Let’s be honest: The protests were never about saving a park. It’s about religion. One key demographic in the protests are Turkish Alevis, who have religious ties to Syrian dictator Bashar Al-Assad who shares the same faith. A lot of these protesters even openly carry pro-Assad protesters (the Syrian dictator who SCUDs his own people) and are angry over Turkish support for the Syrian opposition.

    The problem that these protesters face is that even TODAY, Erdogan enjoys a 60% approval rating… higher than any leader in western Europe or the US. The guy is wildly popular, but with Erdogan, you either love him or you hate him. So the protesters know they face an uphill battle to achieve ANYTHING, and their comparisons of Erdogan to Hitler just make average Turks think they are radicals. Even the Kurds, who would have normally leaped at the opportunity to humiliate Erdogan, are staying out of it.

    The Middle East is increasingly being drawn along sectarian fault lines. This is all about religion.

      • Except that Turkey only recognizes three religions (aside from the dominant Muslim faith) and does not grant them full rights. The state seizes the property of minority religious groups at will. Religious discrimination is rampant.

        Turkey also has compulsory religious education. I often wonder — if a religion is all that great, why does it require compulsion? This goes for every religion.

    • While I will not dispute your analysis, it’s perhaps a mistake to underestimate the power of “Arab Spring” “uprisings” when and where they occur. Why? Because historically they have been engineered, without exception, by the CIA to effect changes in governments of mainly Islamic persuasion. Partly because such governments are, by nature, of a volatile orientation. Islam is highly emotional by design, and how obvious has that proven to be?

      There’s not even necessarily a specific desired result: the CIA thrives upon disorder, and knows well how to turn upheaval to advantage. If you can’t see it written across the pages of history the past sixty years, your view is distorted!

    • The Kurds are actually involved. There are pictures of a Kurdish couple getting married at Gezi parki.

  2. Turkey’s population is about 75 million. With 9 million guns, the rate would be about 12 firearms per 100 people.

  3. 9 million guns for 75.6 million people is 12 guns per 100 people. By your math there are 22.5 Billion people in Turkey.

  4. Nothing that happens in the Middle East is any business or responsibility of the United States.

  5. Where did you get 0.4 firearms per 100 people? On the same website that you cited, it says 12.5 privately owned firearms per 100 people.

    Holding ourselves to a higher standard is what makes us better than our opponents, in case anyone wants to start calling me a gun grabber.

  6. What happened to my effing POST? I’m going to have to start copying them to add in edit, AREN’T I?

  7. Believe me there are plenty of semi-automatic firearms in the hands of Turkish civilians. Drive down rural roads in Turkey and you will see more road signs with bullet holes than you do in freaking backwoods central Pennsylvania.

  8. …In any case; don’t shed too many tears for anyone in this part of the world. Every Muslim country is floating in the 97%-100% range for compliance to Islam. If you think whoever could float to the top in any of these poor excuses for elections would be friendly to the US; you’re delusional.

    While this does prove to be an example of government having its way with an unarmed populace, it is never-the-less, Muslim on Muslim violence. As long as their rage is directed at one another, there is less likelihood of them conjuring future pain for us.

  9. “is more than vaguely reminiscent of Hosni Mubarak’s pre-”Arab Spring” action against dissidents.”

    mubarak is probably a bad analogy, the reverse….secular leader vs sharia opposition vs Turdkey’s Erdogan sharia leader vs secular (minority opposition?). Mike said assad scuds his own people, but I’d like to see proof: can’t trust all Western sourced info – all kinds of USA and Israel gear is being seized by SAA [including chem weapons] from the Al Nusra Front al qaeda affiliate (most popular due to superior arms). Errdogan attacks assad’s forces and accepts their defectors. Makes sense, sharia leader supporting sharia islamist FSA al qaeda fighters. Most of their gear is from turkey and Saudi, but with Israel and USA chiming in: here at 3:22 the narrator says “America” w/o showing the markings or serial numbers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FkMonk3Ltj0 looks like AT4 anti armor tubes n ammo.

    also, no one could ever know or guesstimate the # of arms in private hands: next door the SAA is daily seizing (post clash) huge stashes of soviet era military gear including seeking missiles, belt fed, 23mm, IEDs, grenades, shop built rocketry,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *