Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 17, 2013

U.S. Campaign Against Turkish Spy Chief Continues

Human Rights Watch and the Wall Street Journal blamed Turkey and especially its intelligence chief Hakan Fidan for supporting the "bad" insurgents and terrorists in Syria and to thereby hindering the U.S. plans to use the "good" insurgents and terrorists to achieve regime change there. The recent allegations were also covered in the Turkish press, often in support of the Turkish government strategy. 

U.S. interference and the recent campaign against Hakan Fidan continue. The unofficial CIA-spokesperson, Zionist defender and Washington Post columnist David Ignatius now peddles allegations, based solely on mysterious "knowledgeable sources", that the Turkish intelligence service outed ten Iranians who worked as informants for the Israeli Mossad:

The Turkish-Israeli relationship became so poisonous early last year that the Turkish government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is said to have disclosed to Iranian intelligence the identities of up to 10 Iranians who had been meeting inside Turkey with their Mossad case officers.
Knowledgeable sources describe the Turkish action as a “significant” loss of intelligence and “an effort to slap the Israelis.”

First allegations against Hakan Fidan about contacts with Iranian services were made by Israeli officials back in 2010. Ignatius surely knows about the poisonousness of Turkish-Israeli relations. It was Ignatius who in 2009 in Davos denied (vid) the Turkish premier Erdogan a chance to respond to Israel's president Peres defense of the deadly Israeli attacks on Gaza.

Now Ignatius is defending Israel again. He alleges that it is Turkey which is responsible for bad Israeli behavior. In May 2010 Israel attacked a Turkish ship, on its way in international waters to bring aid to Gaza, and killed nine Turkish activists on board. Turkey demanded an apology. Only earlier this year, which the Turkish president Gül called "too late", did Israel apologize. Ignatius now claims that the apology came so late because the Turks in 2012 outed the Iranian Mossad agents:

Israeli anger at the deliberate compromise of its agents may help explain why Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu became so entrenched in his refusal to apologize to Erdogan about the May 2010 Gaza flotilla incident.
So according to Ignatius an incident that happened, allegedly, in spring 2012 prevented the Israelis to give an apology for the Mavi Marmara incident in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Either the Israelis have some mysterious capabilities of foresight or Igantius has the cause and effect relations backwards.

If the Turks indeed outed Mossad spies it was likely in response to Israeli drone support for the Kurdish liberation movement and terrorist group PKK.

The Ignatius attack on Hakan Fidan must be seen in light of a change in U.S. strategy towards Syria as the focus of U.S. policy moves from regime change towards the prevention of a new Al-Qaeda stronghold in northern Syria. The Turkish intelligence services actively supported the Jihadists and that support must now be starved off.

There are signs that the campaign against such support is somewhat succeeding. On Tuesday the Turkish army claimed to have shelled a Syrian hill next to its borders after Jihadists in Syria had taken it as a new military position. If that shelling indeed took place it did not help. Today ISIS and the Tawhid brigade took control of the Bab al Salama border gate with Turkey. Thanks to Hakan Fidan and his boss Erdogan Al-Qaeda is now a direct neighbor of Turkey.

Posted by b on October 17, 2013 at 7:14 UTC | Permalink


Looks like the times, when syrian problems were "an internal affair" to the turkish regime, are over. From my detached point of view it looks like Turkey's been trying to take advantage of the job they've been given by their NATO masters and now that their job's done they receive the bill.

Posted by: peter radiator | Oct 17 2013 13:40 utc | 1

The Turks do not like that "leak":

Turkey says international campaign under way to discredit government

Turkish foreign minister has blamed various international and domestic campaigns for trying to discredit government’s “mission” and Ankara’s goal to raise Turkey’s global profile.

“Various campaigns both on international and national level are recently under way,” Ahmet Davutoğlu said from his hometown Konya, a central Anatolian town where he came to mark Muslim holiday of Eid al Adha.

Davutoğlu said the campaigns against Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, himself, intelligence chief Hakan Fidan and other senior officials aim at the “mission” these officials have been undertaking for Turkey’s progress. He vowed that the government politicians will defy these orchestrated campaigns by “walking in this sacred path,” referring to government policies.

Davutoğlu’s remarks came on the day when Washington Post columnist David Ignatius cited “knowledgeable sources” as saying that the Turkish government disclosed to Iranian intelligence the identities of up to 10 Iranians who had been meeting inside Turkey with their Mossad case officers.

Sources described the Turkish action as a “significant loss of intelligence” and “an effort to slap the Israelis.”

Davutoğlu said the fact that “those circles” are disturbed by Turkish officials is a sign that “we are taking strides on the right path.”

“There has been a campaign in the past 3-4 months to discredit our 10-year experience. They wanted to see old Turkey returning back,” Davutoğlu added.

Officials in Ankara, speaking to Reuters on condition they not be named, described the article as part of an attempt to discredit Turkey by foreign powers uncomfortable with its growing influence in the Middle East.

Posted by: b | Oct 17 2013 14:27 utc | 2

The International Crisis Group (another U.S. para-government organization) is now als0 pressing on Turkey:

Anything But Politics: The State of Syria’s Political Opposition

The recommendations:

In particular:

- the opposition’s foreign state backers ought to drastically improve their coor-dination, especially on the military front;
- this should be accompanied by efforts to limit alternative channels of material and logistical support; notably, Gulf states need to rein in private funding, and Turkey needs to do more to disrupt the influx of foreign fighters and fundraisers across its southern border;

A full PR concert ...

Posted by: b | Oct 17 2013 14:37 utc | 3

This could be A) Just another US PR campaign to burnish Turkey's anti-imperial credentials so that it might get close to Iran and Syria and stab them in the back AGAIN(!) at some future date.

Or B) a lesson for Erdoghan in what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive. Having played in the western camp for decades, then slummed it with the resistance for a couple of years and then come back to the west to help attempt the destruction of Syria, the Turks can now be trusted by nobody. They should have picked a side and stuck with it, or neither side and maintained strict neutrality.

Posted by: Lysander | Oct 17 2013 14:44 utc | 4

Of Course, if it is the former, the Iranians would know if the Turks lent them a hand or not. They can choose to help by publicly denying such incident ever took place. Then again, why should they bother?

Posted by: Lysander | Oct 17 2013 14:46 utc | 5

Its just a PR campaign as Lysander said above and I mentioned many times in previous threads. If anyone believes Turkey and PGGC are going against US wishes, then I have bridges to sell :)

I dont believe for a second US changed its mind about installing puppets in Syria and Iran. If US and alies fails at it - at the very least they'll continue weakening both countries in any way they can.

Posted by: Harry | Oct 17 2013 15:04 utc | 6

This is good news, it just shows the weakness and chaos of the US-GCC side. For a comparison look at the Russia-Iran-Hezbollah-Syria side working together perfectly, with no public disagreements. In a word United.

On the other side you have Saudi Arabia fighting with Qatar, Saudi Arabia pissed off at the US, the US displeased with Turkey, Israel sniping Turkey, both Israel and SA teaming up to derail the US. Qatar threatening to improve relations with Iran, and Jordan just shutting up and hoping no one will notice them.

This has to be the most divided alliance in history ! And it shows in Syria. Loads of groups spending more time fighting with each other than fighting Assad.

Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Oct 17 2013 15:45 utc | 7

Erdogan was at his best when looked out for Turkeys best interests, when he provided real services to the people, proper garbage pick up, updated infrastructure, good schools. My ex girlfriend called Istanbul a dump!
Then he goes and supports that horrible Gezi park crap.
He was at his best representing the rights of Palestinians and he could have truly established himself as a great man, if he would have ended the whole Libya fiasco. He could have provided the veto to cease hostilities.
But he chose to be a servant a lapdog, good riddance.

Posted by: Fernando | Oct 17 2013 17:55 utc | 8

@8 - i don't see erdogan being a servant to israel.. i think this is what is pissing off a lot of people like ignatius who we are hearing about thru the regular usa propaganda outlets.. the way israel handled the flotilla and erdogan handled the gezi park crap are very different too btw, but perhaps some folks don't want to consider the different vision involved in either.. it is much easier to dump on erdogan and put the flotilla event and by extension what is going on in gaza off people's radar..

Posted by: james | Oct 17 2013 20:18 utc | 9

NSA can be a force (unintentionally) for good

Posted by: brian | Oct 17 2013 21:11 utc | 10

Tony Blair grins for his photograph as he holds up his smartphone to take a selfie. He's delighted with himself and what he's done. Behind him, black smoke and hellish flames bloom over an arid landscape. To many people, this grotesquely comic moment says it all – only Blair would think that's a good photo opportunity.

Posted by: brian | Oct 17 2013 22:56 utc | 11

@11 Tony Tony Tony... no need to capture the memory with a photo when you have an eternity coming for you in a similar scene...

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 18 2013 0:01 utc | 12

@james | 9

Turkey, Saudis, Qatar, etc. may not like each other (and especially Israel) and have own agendas and disagreements, but ultimately they do as US says. US simply has too much influence and they make sure their main goals are served by subservient states. If some leaders decide to act on their own and turn against US, they are disposed. History is filled with hundreds of examples.

Thats why I find it humorous some think US is looking for peace in Syria, while evil Saudis and Turks act against US demands. Its just a PR for naive, nothing more, nothing less.

Posted by: Harry | Oct 18 2013 2:48 utc | 13

@13 If this is all PR, then this article is certainly part of that campaign.:

When Saudi Arabia's veteran foreign minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, made no annual address to the United Nations General Assembly last week for the first time ever, his unspoken message could hardly have been louder.

For most countries, refusing to give a scheduled speech would count as little more than a diplomatic slap on the wrist, but for staid Saudi Arabia, which prefers backroom politicking to the public arena, it was uncharacteristically forthright.

Engaged in what they see as a life-and-death struggle for the future of the Middle East with arch-rival Iran, Saudi rulers are furious that the international body has taken no action over Syria, where they and Tehran back opposing sides.

Unlike in years past, they are not only angry with permanent Security Council members China and Russia, however, but with the United States, which they believe has repeatedly let down its Arab friends with policies they see as both weak and naive.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 18 2013 3:52 utc | 14

@13 - harry, i remember turkey dropping out of the military exercises with israel after the flotilla event. perhaps the usa dictates what all these countries do in some general way, but i think these countries have a bit more autonomy then being water carriers for usa which incidentally i always tend to think of as a water carrier for israel..

Posted by: james | Oct 18 2013 4:06 utc | 15

@guest77 | 14

Its just a hissy fit, Saudis do as US tells them to anyway, otherwise *looks at recent soft-coup in Qatar*.

How fast people forgot US just handed full reign over Syria's terrorists to Saudis, therefore its yet another confirmation SA is continuing implementing US plans in Syria, no?

@james | 15

"i remember turkey dropping out of the military exercises with israel after the flotilla event."

It doesnt mean anything in Grand scale of things. Turkey much like PGGC are bashing Israel (for local public consumption!), but in reality they are tightly cooperating on all-things-which-matter.

All countries have different levels of autonomy. For example, Turkey has more autonomy than Saudis, which has more than Qatar, etc etc.

But dont confuse that with independence to do whatever they want. Autonomy is primarily in areas which dont matter to US, but when US wants to push certain goals - all subservient regimes have to fall into line, they have little choice. US has way too many pressure points for puppets to ignore. Ranging from political, economic or even outright coup or "color revolution."

If someone like Saudis would turn against US, Abdulah with Bandar would be gone faster than you can say "damn."

Posted by: Harry | Oct 18 2013 5:06 utc | 16

@Harry #13

If some leaders decide to act on their own and turn against US, they are disposed. History is filled with hundreds of examples.
so you shouldn't be surprised if Turkey and SA turned out to be examples x01 and x02 :-)

but no one asserted or implied that they are turning against fundamental interests of the Us in the region; rather, they are defending their own fundamental interests (as perceived by some of them) in a region from which the Us are trying to disentangle themselves (with little success); in the grand scheme of things, for the Us it makes very little difference what happens to Assad (except for the face-saving bit, which is no little thing), but if it decides that an Al Qaeda controlled region in Syria is unacceptable, then that's where the real friction would start, and has just started, in b's interpretation (which I agree with) - and Turkey, it seems, is falling in line;

the problem is complicated by the fact that the Us, as usual, doesn't have a clear and steady policy, and different centers of command pursue different agendas; so there's ample space for "legitimate" search of solutions by its regional partners

Posted by: claudio | Oct 18 2013 7:13 utc | 17

I don't think it's a zus capaign.
Looking at the players and considering the fact that ignatius is a subservant israeli farthole it seems obvious that it's an israeli campaign and one that at the same time serves the second purpose to make the currently not so obedient zamerican regime look bad.

Classical israeli style hit operation. Achieve what you desire and have someone else look bad and pay for it.

But then, israel has good reasons to try *every*thing. After all, zusa pulled back from Syria and it looks like the ultimate israeli nightmare of a free (from sanctions, punishment, etc.) Iran might rather soon become reality.

In other words, it's just the squeaking of rats smelling their death approaching.

Ceterum censeo israel delendum esse.

Posted by: Mr. Pragma | Oct 18 2013 15:16 utc | 18

re 11. Tony Blair grins for his photograph as he holds up his smartphone to take a selfie.

It wasn't obvious to me that you understood that this image of Blair is a photoshopped composite, a work of art. Though a brilliant creation, which speaks volumes. I might get a copy to put on my wall.

Posted by: alexno | Oct 19 2013 18:33 utc | 19

"Nine Lebanese pilgrims who were kidnapped by insurgents in Syria have been freed in exchange for two Turkish pilots seized in Lebanon" - The fact that they were released in exchange for TURKISH pilots shows reveals who was really behind the kidnapping! A year ago the kidnapping video was shown by aljazeera, AlQaeda's most trusted media who they send all their videos. Though many of the headlines read "Syrian rebels Free pilgrims" instead of "released" which is far more accurate. The pilgrims came back to a heroes welcome in lebanon after having been imprisoned for 1.5 years.

Posted by: brian | Oct 20 2013 3:43 utc | 20

This is curious since being seen to be attacked by Israel and neocons actually helps Erdogan's ratings in Turkey and may have the possibly intended effect of helping him and Fidan vis a vis Gul and Gulenists. Gul wants to be PM a la Putin Medvedev switcharoo but Erdogan is keen on Fidan if he can himself be elevated to the presidency.

Posted by: kodlu | Oct 23 2013 4:18 utc | 21

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