Understanding the July 2016 Military Coup: The Contemporary Security Dilemma in Turkey

This study explores the link between religious identity and conflict in contemporary Turkey by examining the dramatic reversals in the relations between the country's two prominent Islamic social forces, the ruling party AKP and the Gülen Organization. It shows how a particular trajectory of power and identity between the two religious forces transformed into a brutal security competition in the Turkish society and polity. It puts the analytical foci on the following puzzle: how did the Gülen community — once a confidential ally of AKP — turn into a coup plotter in the Turkish military to bring down the elected government? In order to explore the puzzle, the study offers significant departures from the standard approaches to religious identity and conflict by employing a distinct concept — the inter‐societal security dilemma.