Updated: Oct 9, 2022
The secret intelligence cabal directly controlled by the head of Turkey’s notorious National Intelligence Organization (MIT) under direct orders from the Turkish president has planned to assassinate a leading critic in Germany and execute a plan to kidnap another critic in the Netherlands, sources familiar with the cases told me this week.
The plans were revealed by the German and Dutch intelligence agencies, which warned people who were targeted in these stunning plots after the operatives tripped the alarm set by intelligence agencies to monitor Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s long arm in Europe.
Both men who were targeted by MIT with murder and kidnapping schemes are affiliated with the Gülen movement, the most outspoken critic of the Erdoğan regime and which is led by US-based Turkish Muslim scholar Fethullah Gülen.
The case in the Netherlands involved drugging and abducting a critic to a freighter that was destined for a Turkish port.
That means Erdoğan has set up Turkey, supposedly a NATO ally, to infringe on the sovereign rights of alliance members by authorizing illegal operations in countries that are not welcoming of the Turkish government’s moves to punish dissidents and Erdoğan’s critics stemming from his personal vendetta.
A special department was set up in MIT to coordinate these hits and abductions. A priority list was drawn up from a long list of critics, dissidents and opponents.
Identified names were divided into sub-categories for which murder, kidnapping or harassment to intimidate were suggested for individual targets depending on the profile of the victim and the circumstances of the country in which he or she lives.
MIT has been able to snatch 80 members of the Gülen movement, mostly math and science teachers who worked in Gülen schools abroad, one of the best performing network of schools that operate in some 160 countries around the world.
In many cases, these people had b een living overseas for decades before being forcibly returned to Turkey in cooperation with the host countries' authorities, often in exchange for bribes and other perks.
Kosovo, the only example in Europe, witnessed the abduction of a doctor and five teachers with secret cooperation from the intelligence service and interior ministry that bypassed the Office of the Prime Ministry.
This rendition sparked a political crisis in Kosovo, prompting the EU to condemn the kidnappings
However, Erdoğan has failed to secure the extradition of movement participants on false charges of terrorism from countries that enjoy robust democratic credentials, strong rule of law and respect for fundamental rights and freedoms.
He has then resorted to employing tactics rarely used in foreign countries by intelligence agencies.
That suggests MIT has become a hostile intelligence agency filled with a posse that wants to take Erdoğan’s critics dead or alive under the stewardship of the rogue regime of President Erdoğan.
It also shows that the Turkish president does not care much about jeopardizing intelligence cooperation with Western allies as long as he maintains the campaign of fear for his critics at home and abroad.
His bragging at public rallies about how 80 people who have never been involved in any criminal activity were snatched from other countries with a promise of more to follow indicates he does not care about international complications, legal or diplomatic.
Therefore, European intelligence agencies must brace themselves for the worst and expect that Erdoğan’s thugs are willing to undertake practically any and every thing to deliver what the Turkish president has demanded.
Their promotion within the ranks and handsome rewards depend on how well they perform this task of murdering and kidnapping critics and opponents.
Perhaps that is also the only way to stay away from the ongoing purge that has taken away the livelihoods of some 150,000 people on farcical terrorism charges in one-and-a-half years. Most of these people were prosecuted and many were arrested and put behind bars on dubious charges and without any credible evidence. Those purged and arrested include intelligence officers as well.