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Turkey Ending Support for Saudi Zio-Wahhabi rat’s

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Turkey Ending Support for Syrian Rebels ‘Goodwill Gesture Towards Damascus’

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (R) and Turkish President Erdogan Recep Tayyip Erdogan (File)

© AFP 2017/ IBRAHIM USTA / POOL

Turkey has stopped supporting the Syrian coalition of opposition forces. According to analyst and journalist Musa Özuğurlu, this decision is likely to contribute to normalization between Ankara and Damascus.

Turkey has decided to end its support for the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces (aka the Syrian National Coalition), which encompasses various opposition groups fighting in the Syrian conflict, the Syrian news outlet Zaman el-Vasl reported citing a source in the coalition.

Founded in November 2012, the Syrian National Coalition received $320,000 in annual support from Turkey.

According to Turkish political analyst and journalist Musa Özuğurlu, the decision to stop this support was prompted by Ankara’s unwillingness to give funds to an opposition organization “capable only of talking at press conferences and useless in combat actions on the ground.”The journalist pointed to the fact that currently the coalition does not have the instruments to influence the course of events in Syria.

“This organization now is rather symbolic. It can operate only under the aegis of its leaders based in Ankara and Istanbul. After five years, everyone sees that the Syrian National Coalition has no future. The Turkish government realized that funding the group made no sense and decided to end its support,” Özuğurlu told Sputnik Turkey.

The expert pointed out that Turkey is focused on neutralizing the security threats coming from Kurdish units involved in the Syrian conflict.

“While the US decided to cut off support for Syrian opposition fighters in order to focus on military assistance for Kurdish forces, Turkey’s decision [to end support for the Syrian National Coalition] is a signal that Ankara will focus on countering Kurdish forces in Syria,” he said.At the same time, Özuğurlu underscored that the move would be very important in the future since it is a positive step in relations between Ankara and Damascus.

“By abandoning support for the Syrian opposition, Turkey is making a goodwill gesture towards the Syrian government. This decision may help break the ice between Damascus and Ankara,” he said.

According to Özuğurlu, the possible cooperation between Turkey and the Syrian government would be mutually beneficial.

“Kurdish forces are the key problem on the ground for Turkey. Possibly, the decision was prompted by Ankara’s intention to coordinate actions [on the Kurdish problem] with Damascus. When it comes to the Kurdish problem, Ankara and Damascus have common interests,” the expert said.Özuğurlu, however, assumed that there would be no quick normalization between the two sides.

“They are likely to continue attacking each other with harsh statements. However, the fact that Turkey has ended support for the Syrian National Coalition means that Ankara doesn’t recognize the opposition forces anymore. This may lead to a new phase in Ankara-Damascus relations,” he concluded.

Related:

Kurdish Autonomy: Possible Scenarios of Recognition of Syrian Kurds Independence
Erdogan Slams Those ‘Who Think They’re Tricking Turkey’ Over Arms for Kurds
Turkey ‘Taking Measures’ at Border With Syria’s Idlib Over Terror Threat
Turkish Troops Enter Kurdish Kobane Canton in Northern Syria – Reports

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Turkey, US accuse each other of terror sponsorship in Syria

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Turkey and the United States have been accusing each other of supporting various terrorist groups in Syria.

Brett H. McGurk, the US special envoy to the international coalition against the Daesh terrorist group, has suggested that Turkey facilitates al-Qaeda terrorists in Syria’s Idlib Province.

He said in a speech delivered at a Washington-based think tank on July 29 that Idlib has turned into a “safe zone for al-Qaeda terrorists on the Turkish border,” asking “why and how” a deputy to al-Qaeda’s leader had allegedly managed to travel to the Syrian province.

He said it might not be the best approach for some partners of the US “to send tens of thousands of weapons and turn their faces to the other side as foreign fighters enter this area,” according to reports.

The US, McGurk reportedly said, intended to work with Turkey to have the border closed to recruited militants.

Ankara has strongly denounced McGurk’s “provocative” remarks, accusing Washington of terror sponsorship in Syria by supporting the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which Ankara views as the Syrian branch of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a militant group that has been fighting the central Turkish government since 1984.

“Our reaction to the statements of Brett McGurk, in which he associated Turkey with the presence of terrorist organizations in Idlib, was brought to Mr. McGurk’s attention at a high-level démarche, and his statements, which could be characterized as provocative, were protested,” Turkish media on Monday quoted Foreign Ministry spokesperson Huseyin Muftuoglu as saying.

Muftuoglu also said that the US had to end its support for the Kurdish Democratic Party, aka PYD.

A Turkish Foreign Ministry official, who asked not to be named, also told Hurriyet Daily News that Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Sedat Onal had urged the US envoy to “correct” his statements.

The official added that Onal warned that such remarks could harm mutual cooperation between Turkey and the US, which is seeking cooperation with Ankara for the post-Daesh period in Syria.

Syria has been gripped by militancy since March 2011, when a section of the opposition in the country took up arms against President Bashar al-Assad. A vast mix of foreign terrorists soon blended with the armed opposition, joining the fight against the Syrian government.

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Turkey Needs Russian S-400 System as Shield Against ‘Western Plan’ in Mideast

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Sputnik 

Russia and Turkey are currently at the final stage of negotiations on the delivery of the Russian-made S-400 missile defense system to Ankara. According to Turkish security expert Abdullah Ağar, the deal indicates a major shift in Turkey’s policy.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Monday that there is no reason for Washington to be concerned over the Ankara-Moscow talks on the delivery of the S-400 system.

“Why should this be a concern? Each country should take certain measures to ensure its security. How many times have we talked with America, but it did not work out, so like it or not, we began to make plans about the S-400,” Erdogan said at a press conference in Ankara.

The United States recently signaled that Turkey buying the S-400 from Russia would become a major concern for Washington.

“There was a media report that was incorrect. They have not bought the S-400 air defense system from Russia. That would be a concern, were they to do that, but they have not done that,” Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford said Saturday at a security forum in Colorado.

Earlier, Pentagon chief James Mattis said that the possible deal raises questions about the technical and operational compatibility of the S-400 with NATO’s standards and Turkey would have to explain for itself the choice of the Russian-made weapon.

According to Turkish defense and security expert Abdullah Ağar, the reason behind the concerns of the US is more than the possible S-400 deal and relates to Turkey’s resoluteness to oppose plans that would “threaten Ankara’s territorial integrity.”

“The situation in the region has significantly changed. As for the last three years, Turkey has come to know the threats it faced as well as the actions of its Western partners in this situation. On the one hand, the West works with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and its affiliates in Syria and Iraq. On the other hand, the US and other Western countries support the Gülen movement [FETÖ, designed by Ankara as a terrorist organization] which poses a serious threat to Turkey,” Ağar told Sputnik Turkey.

According to the expert, since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the West has been implementing a “plan to re-draw the Middle East map,” which resulted in a growing terrorist threat near Turkey’s border, including the rise of Daesh.

“Such a policy may result in new foreign invasions in the region. Turkey needs a new approach to oppose this policy. The delivery of the S-400 is part of a big puzzle,” Ağar pointed out.

At the same time, the situation should not be reduced to arms contracts and should be taken in its connection to shifts in the global geopolitical balance of power.

“There is a trend that may result in a [global power shift] from the US and Europe towards Asia. The West knows it, but continues to support organizations that pose a threat for Turkey. At the same time, the West doesn’t want to lose Turkey. In such a situation, Turkey is looking for the solution to this puzzle,” the expert said.

Ağar also said that the West is losing Ankara’s credibility due to its policy of supporting groups that want to “tear Turkey apart.”

“Of course, Turkey will not stay bound hand and foot. Otherwise, the country will found itself in a big trouble in the future. There is no special reason for Ankara to give credibility to West’s promises,” the expert said.

Furthermore, Ağar underscored that Ankara was not allowed to deploy US-made Patriot missile defense systems and as a result Ankara decided to focus on cooperation with Russia.

“The S-400 [deal] is part of a bigger picture of [Russia-Turkey] bilateral cooperation in various fields, primarily energy and security. The supplies of the S-400 are a sign that Turkey is drifting away from the Western world,” the expert concluded.

The negotiations on the matter between Russia and Turkey have taken place since 2016. In March, Sergei Chemezov, CEO of Russia’s Rostec Corporation, said Ankara was ready to buy the S-400 systems with a loan granted by Moscow. On July 18, Chemezov said technical issues of the contract for the supply of the S-400 systems to Turkey had been resolved, with only administrative ones remaining.

The S-400 Triumph is a next-generation mobile surface-to-air missile system that can carry three different types of missiles capable of destroying aerial targets at a short-to-extremely-long range. It is designed to track and destroy various types of aerial targets, from reconnaissance aircraft to ballistic missiles.

As of today, Russia has a deal on supplying the system only with China. In addition to Turkey, talks are also underway with India.

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Peace in Syria for the benefit of I$raHëll and Turkey?

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Peace in Syria for the benefit of Israël and Turkey?

As we approach the end of the war against Syria, none of the initial goals of the Anglo-Saxons have been clearly reached. Not only has the Muslim Brotherhood failed to triumph via the Arab Springs, but they seem to be losing all over the region, apart from in Qatar and Turkey. And although Syria is mostly destroyed, Syrian society and its multi-confessional model has resisted – the Silk Road should finally be re-opened. In any case, Israël and Turkey are close reaping the benefits and disengaging, in their own way becoming winners in this war.

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Everyone expected that the crisis opposing Saudi Arabia and Qatar would facilitate the resurgence of the Riyadh-Damascus-Cairo axis which had dominated the political life of the Arab world until the « Arab Spring ». Nothing of the sort occurred.

Perhaps Prince Mohammad ben Salmane still hopes to win in Yemen, and therefore sees no point in reaching out to Syria. Or else the Saudis, who once led the Arab revolt against the Ottomans, consider today that it would be too dangerous to take the side of Syria against Turkey. It is true that, during last week’s Crans-Montana negotiations, the UNO, the IMF and the European Union supported the occupation of Northern Cyprus by the Turkish army, regardless of the fact that it is illegal under international law. Evidently, although it has become fashionable in the West to vilify Erdoğan’s dictatorship, NATO offers unconditional support for the Turkish military deployment in Cyprus, Syria, Iraq and Qatar.

Since « Nature abhors a vacuum », it was Qatar who made contact with Damascus. For President Bachar el-Assad, this is a less meaningful catch than Saudi Arabia, but it’s a catch nonethless. It represents one less state engaged in the war against his country – and in fact, the only enemy states left, apart from the US multinationals, are the United Kingdom, Turkey and Israël.

The meeting between Presidents Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump, during the G20 in Hamburg on 7 July 2017, seems to have turned the tables! The meeting was originally planned to last half an hour, but in fact lasted two hours, forcing other heads of state and foreign government to wait outside. Although we do not know what the two Presidents and their Ministers for Foreign Affairs actually decided, we do know what they negotiated.

Israël, Egypt and the Arab Emirates proposed an end to the war in Syria by implementing Tel-Aviv’s victory over the Palestinian Resistance, which is currently divided between Fatah, which governs Ramallah, and Hamas in Gaza.

However, Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah has progressively sunk into corruption, and now collaborates openly with Israël. Meanwhile Hamas, created by the Muslim Brotherhood under the auspices of the Israëli secret services in order to weaken Fatah, has discredited itself first of all by its terrorist attacks against civilians, then by its unbelievable behaviour during the war against Syria. As a result, only Turkey and Iran continue to support Hamas, which detests all the other states. Shamelessly, Hamas, which had already allied itself with Mossad and Al-Qaïda in order to massacre the leaders of the PFLP in the Syrian camp at Yarmouk in 2012, once again begged Tel-Aviv for forgiveness.

This is the source of the incredible plan to reunite the two major Palestinian factions, to oust old Mahmoud Abbas (82), to recognise a puppet Palestinian state, and to install as its leader … General Mohammed Dahlan.

Mohammed Dahlan is the leader of Fatah who secretly became an Israëli agent, fought violently against Hamas, and then poisoned Yasser Arafat. Unmasked, he was excluded from Fatah, fled to Montenegro, and was found guilty in absentia. For the last few years, he has been living in the United Arab Emirates, where he enjoys a fortune of 120 million dollars misappropriated from the Palestinian Authority. He will supposedly be welcomed in Gaza by his historical enemies from Hamas, including the new « Prime Minister » Yahya Sinwar, whom, it transpires, is one of his childhood friends. Forgetting the past, he will be tasked with fighting the Army of Islam, in other words, the Palestinian branch of Daesh.

This plan, if indeed it were to be implemented, would mark the definitive liquidation of the Palestinian Resistance, after 70 years of struggle.

It’s in this context that we should understand the announcement of a Putin-Trump agreement concerning three regions in Southern Syria. US troops would be authorised to deploy there, ostensibly to keep the peace, but in truth to create a demilitarised zone between the Syrian Golan and the rest of the country. Iranian troops would not be allowed to approach Israël. Consequently, the Golan, illegally occupied by Israël for forty years, would be considered de facto as annexed, even if the word would never be used. Local village councils would be elected in October 2018, in conformity with Israëli law. There would be no reaction from Russia, and the United States would turn a blind eye to its Crimean obsession.

Peace could be concluded in the rest of Syria with the exception of the zone taken from Daesh by the Kurds and the zone controlled by the Turks. Washington and Moscow would allow the latter to sort out their differences with the Kurds, in other words, to massacre them. Exactly the way in which Henry Kissinger supported the Iraqi Kurds against Saddam Hussein, before abandoning them overnight with their dream of a Kurdistan. Finally, the Turkish army would remain to occupy Al-Bab, as it already occupies North Cyprus and Bashiqa in Iraq.

The Palestinians and the Kurds will pay for their mistake of having fought for a country outside of their territory (in Jordan and Lebanon instead of Palestine for the former, in Iraq and Syria instead of Kurdistan for the latter).

Israël and Turkey will therefore be the only two states who will have benefited from six years of war against the Syrian People.

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UAE paid $3bn to finance coup attempt in Turkey

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The United Arab Emirates financed a high-profile coup attempt last year in Turkey and paid about three billion dollars to the putschists, a columnist in a Turkish daily has claimed.

Mehmet Acet, a columnist for Yeni Safak daily, said on Tuesday that Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu meant the United Arab Emirates when he recently hinted at a Muslim country that spent billions to topple the Turkish government in the coup in July 2016.

Cavusoglu said in recent remarks that a foreign country funneled money to the putschists while making efforts to topple President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

“We know that a country provided $3 billion in financial support for the coup attempt in Turkey and exerted efforts to topple the government in illegal ways. On top of that, it is a Muslim country,” said the Turkish foreign minister, as quoted by Acet.

Acet elaborated on his claims in an interview to the Turkish media, saying sources in the Turkish Foreign Ministry had confirmed that the country behind the coup was indeed the United Arab Emirates.

“The minister did not name the country. However, sources from the foreign ministry have confirmed that it was the UAE,” Acet told Daily Sabah newspaper.

Other sources have also claimed that a media magnate close to the government in Abu Dhabi had indeed transferred money to Turkey weeks before the coup was carried out. They said the money had been funneled to elements loyal to Fethullah Gulen, a cleric based in the United States who is accused by Ankara of masterminding the coup attempt.

Right after the coup was declared over on July 16 last year, Turkey launched a massive crackdown to hunt the plotters. The widening action then led to more than 40,000 arrests. More than 100,000 people have also been discharged from their jobs.

Turkey has not directly accused a country of having a role in the coup, which killed over 250 people. However, Cavusoglu’s remarks come amid a widening diplomatic standoff in the Persian Gulf region. Turkey has been defending Qatar against allegations of terrorism by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates while it has repeatedly endorsed Qatar’s support for senior officials from the Muslim Brotherhood, a popular party outlawed in Egypt since three years ago under pressure from the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.

Ankara and Abu Dhabi are also at odds over the situation in Libya, where the two countries support different sides of the conflict.

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Egregious Lies and Crimes Are The Foundation of Western Foreign Policy

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Syrians are just like you and me.

They seek to live happy, secure lives, in which they can thrive and prosper.

NATO terrorists are destroying Syria, and they have been destroying Syria for about six years.  Infrastructure such as schools, hospitals, water supplies, electric plants, roads and bridges have been and continue to be targeted and destroyed.

Video by Pierre Le Corf

Syrian resident and documentary film maker Tom Duggan bears witness to the terrorists’ willful destruction of schools and school infrastructure throughout Syria as well as the theft of factory equipment and the willful destruction of factories in Aleppo.

NATO terrorists deny Syrians safety, and the means to earn a living. They seek the complete destruction of Syria, its history, and its secular identity.

The real, evidence-based account of Syria’s plight is obliterated by the West’s criminal mainstream media complex, which serves as an appendage of the warmongering elites.

Humanitarian Pierre Le Corf demonstrates that the sources for the Western news stories are not only embedded with the terrorists, but that, in some instances, as is the case with the infamous White Helmets, the sources are the terrorists.

Evidence from the liberation of Aleppo reveals that the White Helmets are FSA, that they are al Qaeda/al Nusra, and that they are Daesh/ISIS.

Video by Pierre Le Corf

Prof. Tim Anderson compiles the evidence from the above video in the photo montage below.

Western governments have lost their legitimacy.  They do not represent the informed will of the people whom they claim to represent.  They conduct their criminal foreign policy based on a foundation of lies.

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Turkey warns US against arming Syrian Kurd ‘terrorists,’ ponders end of ‘strategic partnership’

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Ankara expressed disappointment with the US decision to send heavy weapons to Kurdish militants, while the Kurds praised Washington’s decision as a “historic” move that greatly expands the group’s capabilities to “fight terrorism.”

The Turkish government has asked the US to reverse its decision to broaden support for Syria’s Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (YPG), stating that it is unacceptable for a NATO ally to support “terrorist groups.”

The decision to supply arms to Kurds would have “consequences” and a potentially “negative result” for Washington, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim warned on Wednesday.

“We cannot imagine [the US] making a choice between our strategic-level partnership and a terrorist organization,” Yildirim said, as quoted by the Sabah daily. “The US administration still has a chance to consider Turkey’s sensitivities of highest level on the PKK. If the decision is taken otherwise, this will surely have consequences and will yield a negative result for the US as well.”

Every weapon given to the YPG represents a threat to Turkey, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavushoglu told reporters on Wednesday.

“If we support the territorial integrity of Syria, we should take lessons from the mistakes we made in Iraq and abstain from making any wrong moves. YPG and PKK are the same entity, there’s no difference between them,” Cavushoglu said, according to NTV broadcaster. “Every weapon which gets into their hands represents a threat to Turkey.”

“We cannot accept the presence of terrorist organizations that would threaten the future of the Turkish state,” Turkish Deputy PM Nurettin Canikli told broadcaster A Haber on Wednesday. “We hope the US will put a stop to this wrong and back down from it. This policy will not be beneficial to anyone; you can’t be in the same sack as terrorist organizations.”

While the YPG is a US ally in Syria, Ankara perceives it as an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which is considered a terrorist group in both Turkey and the US.

As the decision to supply heavier weapons was announced, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said that the US “reassures the people and the government of Turkey that the US is committed to preventing additional security risks and protecting our NATO ally.”

The US responded to the comments by the senior Turkish officials, with US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis promising to “work out” concerns over arming the YPG fighters.

“We will work very closely with Turkey in support of their security on their southern border. It’s Europe’s southern border, and we’ll stay closely connected,” Mattis said on Wednesday, according to Reuters.

The YPG militia praised the US’ decision, stating that it would boost the group’s capability to “fight terrorism.”

“We believe that from now on and after this historic decision, (the YPG) will play a stronger, more influential and more decisive role in combating terrorism at a fast pace,” Reuters cited YPG spokesman Redur Xelil as saying in a written statement.

The decision to supply weapons to YPG militia came amid recent tensions between the US and Turkey after Ankara’s strikes on Kurdish-held areas in Syria and Iraq late in April. The aerial bombing and artillery shelling killed a number of YPG militants and Iraqi Peshmerga fighters. Several civilians also perished in the strikes on Syria, according to the militia groups’ statements. Turkey, however, claimed that it had targeted solely PKK “terrorists.” Iraqi Kurds acknowledged a PKK presence in the targeted areas, but the YPG did not.

After the incident US troops arrived to the targeted locations to inspect the damage The demonstration of American military presence in the region met a harsh reaction in Ankara.

President Erdogan’s senior aide Ilnur Cevik said the US forces in Syria could be “accidentally” hit by Turkish strikes, as their presence wouldn’t shield “PKK terrorists” from Turkey’s forces.

Cevik, however, later somewhat softened his stance, stating that “has never and will never hit its allies anywhere and that includes the US in Syria,” while adding that “no one should allow our US allies to become a shield for them.” 

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After Buying S-400, Turkey Aims to Build Own Components for Air Defense Systems

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The launchers of the S-400 air defense missile system which entered service at the Russian Aerospace Forces air defense unit in the Moscow Region. (File)

Talks with Russia on deliveries of S-400 air defense systems to Turkey are at final stages, but Ankara still aims to manufacture its own components for such systems, Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik said Wednesday.

ANKARA (Sputnik) — Russia and Turkey have been engaged in talks on the S-400 deal since 2016. In March, Sergey Chemezov, CEO of the state-owned Russian corporation Rostec, confirmed that Ankara was willing to buy the S-400 if Moscow provides a loan.Turkey’s purchase of the S-400 system was also discussed during President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Russia.

“Negotiations with Russia on the S-400 have reached a mature stage, only technical details are remaining. When we agree on a price, we will submit it to our president, and a decision will be made,” Isik said in an interview with Turkey’s NTV television.

“[However], our main goal, against which no one can speak, is to produce our own components for an air defense system. And we have started a serious work in this direction,” Isik stressed.

On April 28, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said Moscow and Ankara had reached an agreement on the purchase of the S-400 air defense systems with the negotiations on joint production and the prices being underway.

The S-400 Triumf, which NATO refers to as the SA-21 Growler, was developed by the Almaz-Antey defense contractor and manufactured by the Fakel Machine-Building Design Bureau. The system is capable of intercepting all types of modern air weaponry, including fifth-generation warplanes, as well as ballistic and cruise missiles at a maximum range of nearly 250 miles.

The S-400 Triumf Mobile Multiple Anti-Aircraft Missile System (AAMS)
© SPUTNIK
The S-400 Triumf Mobile Multiple Anti-Aircraft Missile System (AAMS)

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It Wasn’t Russia, How Erdogan Bought Trump and His Neocon Gangsters, the Kosher Nostra

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Learn who Mike Flynn and Rudy Giuliani really work for and why they are stabbing America in the back while Trump smiles

Reza Zarrab and President Erdogan – the doo doo hits the fan and might splatter a lot of people

 

Mr. 9-11 himself is in the middle of this one

[ Editor’s Note: This case could turn out to be the “Gone with the Wind” movie of high-level corruption, in that Americans will have a front-row seat to watch how politically rotten and corrupt their government and society are.

This case could reveal like no other that it not only goes all the way to the highest levels of political leadership, but into the highest ranks of our judiciary.

The Intel community is intimately aware of this long-running problem, as such people, whether they are ex-attorneys general or not, have national security-risk profiles based not only on what they have done in the past that is now widely known publicly, but what they are capable of doing if certain entities were to request it, including foreign ones.

Legal representation in mega cases can often be based not on attorneys’ legal prowess, but their ability to get a case fixed. And that is often based on their past reputation of being “untouchable” from holding past top government positions and their ability to get a fix in with the highest possible current sitting officials, meaning the White House, where a case gets killed for “national security” issues.

This could turn out to be the mother of all corruption cases; and before it is over, the indictment list might grow to include some people who felt they were beyond the reach of the law for being charged with obstruction of justiceJim W. Dean ]

 

Special for the Armenian Weekly and Veterans Today

In a small courtroom in Manhattan, New York, there is a legal drama playing out, which may have serious consequences for the U.S., Turkey and Iran, but more critically for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. This court case is a ticking time bomb, which may explode in President Erdogan’s face, despite all his clandestine efforts to diffuse it.

Reza Zarrab, a 33-year-old Turkish citizen of Iranian descent, was arrested in Miami on March 17, 2016, as soon as he got off a plane. He stated that he had come to the U.S. with his wife and daughter to see Disney World.

But the three charges against him were serious—conspiring to evade U.S. sanctions against Iran, money laundering and bank fraud. He was promptly transferred to a New York jail, where he currently sits. And the connection to President Erdogan? Read on, as this is an international thriller in the making.

For several years, the U.S. had slapped sanctions on Iran to contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions. The U.S. had imposed strict controls on all international banks and corporations, banning them from doing any business with Iran. Therefore, Iran faced great difficulty getting paid for its oil exports. A couple of Iranian businessmen, Babek Zenjani in Tehran and Reza Zarrab in Istanbul, stepped up to circumvent the sanctions.

Oil payments would be made to companies and banks in Turkey, huge amounts of gold would be bought with those funds, and then the gold would be exported from Turkey to Iran, directly or perhaps with a few stops in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and other places in between. This scheme, although very simple, required huge amounts of money and gold transferred on a daily basis, which would undoubtedly attract the unwanted attention of government officials.

That problem would be addressed by generous bribes, commissions, and police protection. When you are moving billions of dollars daily, a few hundred million dollars to government officials is just the cost of doing business.

So, with the system set up in Iran and Turkey, Reza Zarrab quickly became a “gold trading” tycoon in Turkey, making headlines with large donations to religious charities linked to Erdogan as a philanthropist, marrying a popular pop star singer, and buying several mansions along the Bosphorus.

Erdogan’s government also bestowed Turkish citizenship on him with a special decree. There were a few mishaps in the scheme, such as 1.5 metric tons of gold seized in the cargo of an airplane in Istanbul by a “misguided” or “uninformed” customs official, who was promptly suspended and sent to “exile” to the interior part of Turkey.

But the scheme blew up and came out in the open on Dec. 17, 2013, when Turkish police, or rather, a certain section of Turkish police not loyal to Erdogan, arrested Reza Zarrab and the sons of three cabinet ministers, along with a few bank leaders.

They had indisputable evidence including wiretaps, videos, telephone conversations, and documents proving the large amounts of bribes passed on from Zarrab to the ministers and bank officials. The evidence also included money counting machines in living rooms, several million dollars in shoeboxes, expensive gifts, and money being delivered to the ministers’ homes in suit bags. All the dirty laundry came out.

One of the most interesting telephone conversations released by the investigators and reported by several media outlets was between Erdogan and his son, when Erdogan instructs his son to get rid of all cash in the house, after he hears about the raids to his ministers’ houses. His son’s response after several hours of frantic work reveals that despite all his attempts to distribute the cash at home to colleagues, relatives, or associates, there is still some 30 million euros left at home.

Despite the evidence, Erdogan did manage to escape the investigation unscathed, fired the three ministers, and also fired all the police officials and prosecutors involved in this operation, claiming that this was a conspiracy and coup attempt by the followers of Fethullah Gulen, the Muslem fundamentalist preacher living in exile in Pennsylvania. Most of the police officials and prosecutors are now in jail, and a few lucky ones have fled the country.

Reza Zarrab was released from prison in two months, in Feb. 2014. His defense was very simple: “If you don’t release me immediately, I start talking.”

It is not known why Zarrab chose to come to the U.S. Perhaps he decided to seek protection there, albeit in jail, instead of facing attempts to silence him in Turkey. Meanwhile, his partner in Iran, Babek Zenjani, was arrested and sentenced to death for defrauding the Iranian Oil Ministry for four billion dollars.

The Zarrab affair gets even more interesting in the U.S. The man who brought the charges against Zarrab was Preet Bharara, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York—a star attorney who made his name as a fearless prosecutor of Wall Street wrongdoers.  Erdogan’s concern about the Zarrab case was evident when he asked former Vice President Joe Biden to intervene. But luckily for him, just as the case against Zarrab started moving, the new president Trump fired Bharara, along with hundreds of other Obama appointees.

Zarrab has hired nearly 20 elite white-collar criminal lawyers to defend him. The last two hired lawyers are especially noteworthy, Rudi Giuliani, former New York Mayor and U.S. Attorney, and Michael B. Mukasey, the former U.S. Attorney General, who have promptly met top Turkish government officials. The presiding U.S. District Judge Richard Berman has asked defense lawyers to explain Giuliani and Mukasey’s role in the case, and to disclose if the government of Turkey is paying their fees.

Prosecutors claimed that the hiring of Giuliani and Mukasey might present a conflict of interest because their firms also represent some of the banks alleged to be victims in Zarrab’s case. Prosecutors also said that Giuliani and Mukasey were hired to try to reach a political settlement in the case.

In another twist, Mukasey’s son, Marc, has been widely speculated as a candidate to become the New York U.S. Attorney under Trump, to replace Preet Bharara. The Zarrab case will be one of the agenda items when Erdogan meets Trump in the next few weeks.

This thriller involving power, bribery, corruption, oil, and gold will come to an end soon, but it is highly doubtful that justice will be served…

From the UK Daily Mail:

Federal prosecutors in Manhattan have accused former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and ex-Attorney General Michael Mukasey of going above their heads in order to get charges tossed against a Turkey-based business mogul. Giuliani and Mukasey were hired to defend Reza Zarrab, who was arrested last year in Miami, for allegedly laundering money for Iran.

In their effort to get Zarrab’s case tossed, Giuliani and Mukasey want to meet with President Donald Trump’s officials, instead of speaking with prosecutors on the case directly. Zarrab’s attorneys sent a letter to the judge on the case saying that what Giuliani and Mukasey are up to ‘quite frankly is none of the government’s business’.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (right) and former Attorney General Michael Mukasey (left) were hired by Turkey-based business mogul Reza Zarrab's defense

Zarrab, a 33-year-old gold-trader, was arrested in Florida last year for allegedly laundering money for Iran. In the year since Zarrab was arrested, his case has grown ever more complex and far-reaching.

As Turkey presses the Trump administration to get the charges tossed, an increasingly messy web of connections has come into view, prompting questions about conflicts of interest, Turkish corruption and pro-Turkey lobbying by individuals near the center of Trump’s orbit.

On Friday, federal prosecutors raised fresh concerns about a recent trip that Giuliani and Mukasey made to Turkey to consult with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan about the case.

Zarrab, a 33-year-old gold-trader married to a Turkish pop star, and several others are accused of conspiring to evade US sanctions against Iran, using a network of companies to mask the true nature of transactions and defraud multiple banks.

Prosecutors say they processed hundreds of millions of dollars for Iran and claim to have thousands of pages of bank, email and phone records to prove it. Zarrab pleaded not guilty.

It’s not surprising the involvement of Giuliani and Mukasey would raise red flags. Giuliani, one of candidate Trump’s staunchest supporters, advises the president, in an unofficial capacity, on cybersecurity. Both his and Mukasey’s law firms have represented bank victims in Zarrab’s case, which prosecutors say may be a conflict of interest.

Trump fired Preet Bharara (pictured), the US attorney who launched the case against Zarrab. Giuliani’s company has also registered as a foreign agent for Turkey, a trait shared with another of Trump’s advisers: Michael Flynn.

The former Trump national security adviser had to register retroactively for work he performed in 2016 that could have benefited Turkey’s government. At the time, Flynn was a Trump campaign adviser. There have been no indications Flynn ever lobbied on Zarrab’s case.

Flynn’s foreign agent filing says his intelligence firm was hired by a company owned by a Turkish businessman close to Erdogan, and conducted research into a Muslim cleric and Erdogan foe who also emerges in Zarrab’s case.

If there’s intrigue about the defense team, it extends to the prosecution. Last month Trump fired Preet Bharara, the US attorney who launched the case against Zarrab, as part of a purge of Obama-era prosecutors.

Bharara was dismissed even though Trump made a point during the presidential transition of asking him to stay. Bharara’s possible replacement: Mukasey’s son, Marc Mukasey, who is frequently mentioned as a contender. That could put the younger Mukasey in charge of prosecuting the man his father has been trying to set free.

Bharara's possible replacement could be Mukasey's son, Marc Mukasey (pictured), who would be put in charge of prosecuting Zarrab, the man his father has been trying to set free

Bharara’s possible replacement could be Mukasey’s son, Marc Mukasey (pictured), who would be put in charge of prosecuting Zarrab, the man his father has been trying to set free

For Turkey, the saga is bigger than Zarrab’s case. It has its origins in a massive 2013 corruption scandal in Turkey involving allegations of bribery, fraud and smuggling. Zarrab and Turkish state-owned bank Halkbank were at the center of the storm. Homes linked to several top Erdogan lieutenants were raided and three sons of Turkish ministers detained.

Erdogan dismissed the allegations as a conspiracy by Fetullah Gulen, the Muslim cleric who lives in Pennsylvania and leads a global movement of schools and charities. The corruption scandal eventually subsided. Yet it contributed to a dramatic falling out between Erdogan – then Turkey’s prime minister – and Gulen, whose movement had long been allied with Erdogan’s party.

The rivalry has only grown worse. Turkey has been feverishly seeking Gulen’s extradition from the US after blaming him for a failed coup attempt last July that killed more than 270 people.

Michael Flynn, Trump’s former national security adviser, had to register retroactively for work he performed in 2016 that could have benefited Turkey’s government. Gulen denies involvement in the coup, and the US has said Turkey’s evidence is unconvincing.

Although the Turkish charges against Zarrab were ultimately dropped, his subsequent arrest in the US has brought fresh attention to concerns about corruption in Turkey. Worsening matters for Erdogan, the deputy CEO of Halkbank, Mehmet Hakan Atilla, was arrested in New York this week on charges of conspiring with Zarrab. Turkey’s response has been forceful. Erdogan’s government has argued that Atilla’s prosecution is politically motivated.

And at a meeting this week with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu offered another explanation: Bharara, the former Manhattan prosecutor, is loyal to Gulen. ‘He retweets or likes everything that is anti-Turkey,’ Cavusoglu said.

Rudy Giuliani and ex-Attorney General Michael Mukasey’s attempts to throw out case of Turkish-American ‘money launderer’ raise questions about conflicts of interest after the pair met with the President Erdogan

  • Reza Zarrab, a Turkey-based business mogul, was arrested in Florida last year for allegedly laundering money for Iran
  • Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and former Attorney General Michael Mukasey are among those helping Zarrab
  • Turkey is pressing the Trump administration to get Zarrab’s case tossed

Posted in USA, TurkeyComments Off on It Wasn’t Russia, How Erdogan Bought Trump and His Neocon Gangsters, the Kosher Nostra

Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Theocratic Ambitions: What Implications for Cyprus

NOVANEWS

Revolution of the Mind Series

 

There is a nasty thorn growing inside the perfumed garden of Europe and releasing its poisonous spores across the Eastern Mediterranean and the Aegean. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has made it his mission to establish a new Islamic state and do away with secularism.

After the questionable referendum result on April 16, Turkey is about to be transformed forever. Erdogan cannot wait to change the Constitution and name himself as the all-powerful Grand Sultan of Turkey. In opposition to his obsession a massive 50% of the Turkish citizens resist his theocratic ambitions and another attempt to topple him cannot be discounted.

Last year’s failed coup sparked a hidden trait of his to flare up; a trait not seen before! He was so horrified of nearly losing power he behaved like a child terrified someone was about to steal his candy. Now, the world has become his “enemy” and he lashes out at anyone who disagrees with him.

Badly shaken by the experience, he launched a campaign of brutality imprisoning over 170,000 innocent men, women and young people. Undeterred by international condemnation he continues to imprison people and there is no end to it. Paranoid about his illusionary enemies, he has recently fired 13.000 civil servants, police and army officers and academics. With the help of a network of snoopers across the land his paranoia has reached new levels. Meanwhile he cracks down on mass media, free expression, the Internet, Wikipedia and all means of rapid communication but also against those that spread “moral deterioration”.

Notwithstanding, he produced a list of hundreds of Turks living in 40 countries demanding that those “traitors” be arrested and extradited back to motherland and face Turkish justice. His request outraged governments learning that this man was actually using Turkish Embassies in their countries as a network of spying centers against their citizens.

But his paranoia has now gone one step beyond. He plans to bring back the death penalty to legitimize the execution of phantom enemies or anyone who poses a threat to his rule. Listening to him speak in rallies one immediately recognizes that Hitler used similar tactics during his notorious rousing hate speeches.

He branded EU governments as Nazis for not allowing his political campaigns there and in retaliation he imposed sanctions against “Muslim enemies”. Red with fury, he threatened that from now on:

“no European citizen in any part of the world can walk safely on the streets”, and decreed that:“all Muslim families living in Europe to have a minimum of five children per family” and to cause an ethnic flooding of Muslims in Europe.

What kind of mentality is that coming from a world leader of 80 million people that resorts to such dastardly blackmailing tactics? He seems prepared to use all available means at his disposal including the use of Islamic State to establish his Neo-Ottoman empire. Despite Ankara’s objections, Turkey has been accused of harboring IS activities in banking, recruiting of IS fighters, arms procurement, human smuggling and selling pilfered oil by IS and Turkish agents on the black market. If these tyrannical activities persist, chaos will rise out of the ashes of despair and destabilize Turkey and the region for years to come.

One country that’s exposed to Erdogan’s Islamization ambitions is the small island of Cyprus. Strategically located, the Republic of Cyprus with a population of less that 750.000 Greeks and 250,000 mixed ethnic minorities is gravely vulnerable to Erdogan’s whim. He is very unpredictable and he can mobilize his 40.000 occupying Turkish troops stationed on the island at the snap of his fingers. To provoke even further one of his ministers has lately announced that,

“they captured Cyprus shedding blood and they are prepared to give more blood to keep it”.

Erdogan is so unpredictable, that no sooner had the resumption of the Bi-communal talks started but the very next day Ankara sent its seismic vessel Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa to survey for gas in the Exclusive Sea Protection Zone of the Republic of Cyprus. Sea and Air military provocations were also conducted simultaneously using live ammunition as if to say – I am the boss here and you cannot stop me! 

That’s what the Republic is faced with: Turkey’s constant military provocations, and Cyprus is obliged to negotiate under the threat of a gun. Yet, the Cyprus Government refuses to understand that Ankara will not abandon its military trophy. It insists on negotiating with Ankara’s lame puppet Mr. Akinci for a mythical solution knowing very well that Ankara decides and not this man. After so many years of failed talks, the charade continues to no end. It’s as if the Government is incapable or afraid to forge a new defence policy to protect the island from Erdogan’s threats and Islamization plans.

President Trump and world leaders have condemned N. Korea’s missile provocations and showed their readiness to retaliate against this brutal dictator. Yet, when it comes to another dictator and a Menace of the Med  – Sultan Erdogan of Turkey – the best they can do is tolerate his military aggression.

The present “good boy” attitude has to change. If not, there are much darker clouds on the way. Adopting a defiant new foreign policy by terminating the pseudo-negotiations until a better climate develops may be a good place to start. Shutting the crossings would also send a signal to Ankara and to the Turkish Cypriot leadership that the Republic of Cyprus can no longer tolerate the current farce.To ostracize and pressure Turkey politically and economically through the EU would certainly help produce results – 80% of Turkeys exports go to EU markets!

EU-Cyprus can make it very difficult for Turkey economically and politically if it chooses to do so. It has the ability and the means to use its EU membership to its advantage but it demands a strong decisive leadership that Cyprus so far has been short of.

Meanwhile, the Turkish Cypriot side continues to play dubious games. It pretends to negotiate for a solution on the basis of a BBF and yet, it makes it abundantly clear that TCs wish fora self-governing separate state under Turkey’s protectorate. They also insist on the right to a veto on all national decision-making processes and further demand that all Turkish illegal settlers be given EU visas as a fast track entry to EU from the back door -typical Ottoman games!

Those demands are not co-incidental but well orchestrated and aim to serve Turkey’s objectives in the Eastern Mediterranean. A separate TC state would provide the legal platform for Ankara to establish a defence dyke for its underbelly. If successful, Ankara would then gain control of the entire region but also assert its influence over the entire island and control its massive gas reserves! It has already claimed that Plot Six located south of the island “belongs to Turkey” and she will defend it militarily at the threat of starting a war against any attempts to drill for gas.

Can the Cyprus government stop Turkey’s bullying tactics, provocations and traps? Under the present policy the answer is – No! That is why Cyprus desperately needs a strong leadership and strong allies. Turkey is not about to give up so easily and there are much greater dangers lurking in the future!

Weather Cyprus likes it or not, it was reported that Turkey aims to flood the island with over one million Muslim settlers in the occupied area. Under EU directives the Republic would be powerless to alter the fate of the island. Erdogan’s objective is to change the demographic character of Cyprus and he is doing it systematically. There are over 400.000 illegal settlers living in the occupied area and its no wonder a string of Mosques are sprouting everywhere including the largest Islamic School there.

At this rate, the fast growing Islamization process will certainly bring about the end of Cyprus as a Hellenic nation. A new EU-Cyprus will be established but certainly not a Hellenic. Cyprus will be transformed forever. What will happen next it’s anyone’s guess!

Posted in TurkeyComments Off on Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Theocratic Ambitions: What Implications for Cyprus

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