The Turkish Revolution 1960–61. Walter F. Weiker. Faber & Faber

This book is subtitled Aspects of Military Politics, but it does not investigate the rôle of the army very deeply. It chronicles in great detail the events which led up to the coup d’etat of 1960 and the first political decisions of the military government. It recounts the story of the Menderes trial with careful attention to the legal issues involved. It lists the instigators of the coup d’etat and examines their personal backgrounds. However, it makes no real attempt to characterize the whole phenomenon and legacy of Kemal, without which the political leanings of the Turkish army cannot possibly be understood. There is no attempt to compare the Turkish army with any other; any valuable study of Turkey ought to contrast Kemal with, say, Chiang KaiShek or Reza Shah, similar counter-revolutionary strong men, whose countries have, however, evolved very differently. Moreover, Weiker does not consider the place of Turkey within the world imperialist system. Although he is concerned to reassure Americans about the unparliamentary character of the Turkish régime and generally to present it as a suitably ally for the us, he does not see the implications of this. He says, in effect, that the Turkish military régime is the best regime for Turkey compatible with being good for the us too. He does not ask whether Turkey might have a government free from us domination or comment at all on the absence of any left-wing forces. Indeed, he is remarkably complacent despite his observations about the magnitude of the problems Turkey faces. Martin Malek