Nearly four-and-a-half months have passed since the whole Mavi Marmara incident. There is no longer any real reason to continue making calculations about who came out on top.
What we need to do now is look towards the future and figure out how we can emerge from the situation with the least amount of damage possible. First of all, there have been well-known efforts by Jewish lobbies — which have great influence over the US Congress — to have the İHH (Humanitarian Aid Foundation) officially recognized as a terrorist group. In fact, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s (AIPAC) efforts on this front are continuing. In general, these sorts of lobbies have expended a great deal of energy through their network of influence over the US media to create the perception that the İHH is somehow connected to al-Qaeda.
Following efforts to create the appearance of ties between the İHH and al-Qaeda, there was an effort to create the perception of some sort of organic relationship between the İHH and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party). For instance, the July 17, 2010 issue of The New York Times featured a large report on its front page saying, among other things, that the AK Party was behind the whole Mavi Marmara incident. The journalist who wrote the article was Dan Bilefski. His previous article for The New York Times had been a very critical piece in which he criticized the legitimacy of the ongoing Ergenekon investigation and case. The title of the article on the Mavi Marmara incident was as follows: “Sponsor of Flotilla Tied to Elite of Turkey.”
An article published in the Oct. 21 issue of the Haaretz newspaper indicated there is proof that the Gaza aid flotilla did receive assistance from the Turkish government. According to Haaretz, evidence taken from computers seized during the raid of the flotilla showed that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and other top government authorities had lent the Mavi Marmara aid flotilla assistance. This information, in fact, came from reports taken during a meeting in İstanbul two weeks before the raid, on May 16, 2010.
Deeper cooperation against al-Qaeda....
As many may recall, Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MİT) Undersecretary Hakan Fidan, who went to Iraq in September, met some time before that with his colleague from the American CIA, Leon Panetta. The CIA sent a message via Fidan to Ankara, the message being in fact a proposal for deeper cooperation against al-Qaeda, Hamas and Hezbollah, as well as the al-Qaeda’s various extensions throughout Iraq. The message could actually be read thus: “If you help us in the struggle against al-Qaeda, we could be of help to you against the PKK.” A short time after news of this made its way into the media, both America and England issued warnings to their citizens, particularly those headed for France and Germany, to watch out for terror attacks. After these warnings were issued, intelligence agencies in Pakistan were also put on high alarm.
A while after this, a Pakistani intelligence authority speaking to The Associated Press (AP) claimed that dozens of Muslims with European citizenship had gathered in Pakistan’s lawless border areas, where they were being trained for future attacks on European soil. He said that these particular people had been chosen by al-Qaeda because they could enter and exit Europe easily (due to their citizenship), and that amongst those being trained in Pakistan were Chechens, Uzbeks, Arabs and Turks. But most importantly, this same Pakistani intelligence agent said amongst the “terrorist trainees” was an F-16 pilot who had been, at one point, on duty in the Turkish Air Force.
This source, whom the AP declined to identify by name, asserted that al-Qaeda placed much importance on this Turkish officer, saying, “What we learn from this is that even very well trained people can join the ranks of al-Qaeda here.”
What should really be considered here is that the source for this particular piece of news was the AP. Also, it was the AP that brought the allegations of there being organic relations between the İHH and the AK Party to the media’s agenda. The AP published an interview with French judge Jean-Louis Bruguiere — who has been involved in many terrorism cases and who is investigating the İHH — directly following the Mavi Marmara incident. Bruguiere, alleging that the İHH had an “open and long-term relationship with terrorism and jihad,” said, “In essence, ever since bin Laden began to target the American nation, they have been helping out al-Qaeda.” Bruguiere, talking about a man named Fatih Kamil who worked for the İHH, said that Kamil had been arrested in France in 1999 and that one of his followers, Ahmed Ressam, was arrested and sentenced to 22 years in prison after an attempted bombing attack on the Los Angeles Airport, also in 1999. The French judge then also recalled that in 1998, during the Feb. 28 process, a search that took place at the İHH center in İstanbul turned up weapons and falsified documents, then alleging that the organization was also sending money, weapons and fighters to war zones such as Bosnia and Afghanistan. Bruguiere, who is responsible for investigating the financial sources of terror groups operating in the US and the EU, alleged in his interview that he believed the fact that the İHH was still operating, despite the many suspicions surrounding it, was owing to the fact that it is was receiving assistance from the Turkish government.
Links between İHH and al-Qaeda....LOL, CIA/MOSSAD Disinformation at work...
And so the AP, which worked hard to complete the perception of links between the İHH and al-Qaeda in the wake of the Mavi Marmara incident, now turned its attention to creating the perception that a Turkish Air Force pilot had joined the ranks of al-Qaeda trainees in Pakistan.
Before long, the Turkish flag even showed up in the well-known “South Park” animated series, in relation this time with al-Qaeda. In the “Jersey Things” episode of the series broadcast on Oct. 13, al-Qaeda was shown attacking in airplanes that had the Turkish flag. In the episode, when more and more people from New Jersey moved to South Park, the locals of South Park ask for help from Osama bin Laden to rid the city of its new denizens. Bin Laden does come to their help, carrying out an attack that kills the New Jerseyites using airplanes that bear Arabic writing and Turkish flags on them. This incident was shortly followed by another of images on a DVD cover prepared by the New York Christian Action Network showing a Turkish flag planted in the burning rubble of the Sept.11 attack on the Twin Towers.
In short, it is now clear that in the wake of the Mavi Marmara incident, there has been an attempt to place a giant net over the head of Turkey. In the meantime, it should be noted that al-Qaeda’s number two man, Ayman al-Zawahiri, has threatened Turkey three times over the past two months. Al-Qaeda perceives not only the ruling AK Party but also the entire Gülen community as a threat in Turkey.
An attack on European soil carried out by al-Qaeda that would include a former F-16 pilot from the Turkish Air Forces would:
1. Badly damage Turkey’s international esteem and image. It would also appear to confirm ties between the İHH and al-Qaeda, as well as between the İHH and the AK Party.
2. Turn Turkey into an open target for certain countries.
3. Help to create the perception of just how correct Supreme Military Council (YAŞ) decisions were, if in fact said officer from the air forces was proved to have been thrown out of the military as a result of a YAŞ decision.
4. No doubt it would, most importantly, render the legitimacy of the AK Party’s international relations questionable and lead to a desire to see a redesign of Turkish internal politics.
The al-Qaeda-Ergenekon links in the 2003 HSBC attack and the synagogue attack should not be forgotten.... To wit, sometimes organizations that never come together at all can work together by adhering to the idea of “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”