File this under “actions speak louder than words.”
From refusing to light up the White House blue in favor of fallen police officers to favoring Islamist Egyptian president Mohamed Morsi over his moderate successor Gen. Mohamed el Sisi, nothing says extreme like, well, supporting extremists.
Now President Obama is calling for calm in the wake of a military uprising against Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Erdogan has pushed step-by-step create an Islamic state. That Islamic push is being resisted by secular, educated Turks, mostly in the major cities. Erdogan has also tried to revive the defunct Ottoman Empire by building a new presidential palace and surrounding himself with guards dressed as the soldiers of the Ottoman Empire, which collapsed in 1920. That push has been strongly resisted by neighboring Arab countries, and largely ignored by European governments.
Chillingly, it has taken Erdogan only a few years to undo the secular Turkey that reformer Kemal Ataturk built. The defeat of this coup with apparent assistance from the public in Erdogan’s rural strongholds will likely embolden him.