The Turkish Secret Service, namely Milli Istihbarat Teşkilati (MIT), was
founded by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk in 1925. However, only in 1985 – in a phase of
great transformation of Turkish domestic policy – the Service was given its
current name, the National Intelligence Office, and was also placed under the
Prime Minister’s leadership and political cover (which is fundamental, unlike
what currently happens in Italy).
Since the 1950s – when Turkey’s
role became essential – in NATO’s Eastern Flank, MIT has had very sound
relations with CIA. Nevertheless, MIT has never had an effective and stable
network of agents and collaborations with the European intelligence Services,
while it has always had good relations with the Russian Agencies; obviously,
after 1992, with Azerbaijan, and even with the Singapore Services, as well as
with all the Middle East intelligence services.
Obviously one of MIT’s primary
and institutional goals is the penetration/control of the Kurdish PKK, born
from a “Maoist” organization based in Ankara, which – after the
military coup in 1971 – reorganized itself into a Marxist-Leninist political
party, which obviously had a military arm that became predominant after 1984,
as well as a strictly political and semi-visible network.
Another MIT’s institutional
target is Fethullah Gûlen’s organization, namely Hizmet.
A vast religious-political
network which initially supported Erdogan’s party, the AKP, but then became its
Hizmet (the “Service”) is a community that had its origins in
the cemaat, a traditional Sufi organization typical of Anatolia, but later – in
the phase of the Turkish economic boom, born with the regime of Turgut Ozal,
Prime Minister from 1983 to 1989, and then President of the Republic from 1989
to 1993, the year of his death – became a great network for business.
In that second phase, Hizmet
became a solid economic power -although we must not forget its humanitarian
role – and, according to some analysts, it later became a Parallel Yapi, a
The three tiers of Gûlen’s
organization are sapiential and cultural at the highest levels, but they
presuppose a precise and almost military organization at the lowest levels,
operating in universities, newspapers, media and production structures.
An “Islamic Calvinism”
– as it was defined – with the primary idea of making the dream of an
all-pervasive and, above all, “political” Islam come true, albeit
with charity and benevolence.
It is no coincidence that
Gûlen’s movement is outlawed by the Gulf monarchies, by Pakistan and by the
Organization of Islamic Cooperation, while the EU and the USA do not consider
Hizmet a terrorist organization.
The tension between the AKP and Gûlen’s movement initially arose with
the Gezi Park movement in June 2013, when Hizmet’s leader polemicized against
the too heavy hand used by Erdogan’s government with students.
Later some investigators notoriously linked to Gûlen’s movement publicly
accused the sons of some Ministers, without even sparing Erdogan.
The attempted coup in July 2016
led Erdogan to accuse Gûlen’s movement of having entirely organised and
That was not true, but it was the
best idea to justify Erdogan’s scrapping of the Turkish Armed Forces and,
previously, of the hidden network called Ergenekon.
Hakan Fidan, the Head of the
Turkish intelligence Services, was completely involved in those designs of the
AKP State and its President Erdogan, of whom he has always been a loyal, but
intelligent executor, even though he had a rather complicated career in the
intelligence Services: he was Head of MIT (and hence Undersecretary of State)
from 2010 until 2015, but on February 7, 2015, he resigned to run for
elections, obviously in the AKP ranks.
A month after the acceptance of
his candidacy as parliamentarian, Hakan Fidan resigned again – this time at
political level – and immediately returned to his previous post as Head of MIT.
He also participated – sometimes
almost alone – in the very secret peace negotiations between the Turkish
government and the Kurdish PKK, held in Oslo in 2009, but then Fidan organized
above all the smuggling networks – not only the oil ones – between Iran and
Hence the news -already public at the time – according to which Hakan
Fidan met with Qassem Suleimani, the commander of the Al Quds Force of the
Iranian Pasdaran, in Tehran in 2014.
The meeting took place in a
parking, away from prying eyes and, above all, from any possible operative of
the Turkish Embassy in the Iranian capital.
The meeting between the two Heads
of their respective intelligence Services took place during Erdogan’s State
visit to Iran at the end of January of that year.
Therefore various reliable sources stated that Hakan Fidan was in fact
an asset, a source and hence an agent of influence of the Iranian intelligence
Services in Turkey.
In that capacity, he allegedly met Soleimani to report to him
confidential data on the Turkish Government and on Erdogan’s real intentions at
the time, and, above all, during the war in Syria.
A great business for Turkey and, in any case, a phase in which the
country redefined its geopolitical coordinates – successfully for the time
In fact, Hakan Fidan was also the
subject of checks and investigations by the Turkish counter-espionage,
especially at a time when it had discovered and exploited some operational
intelligence networks in Turkey linked to the Pasdaran.
Hence Hakan Fidan’s double loyalty was verified: the specific
intelligence unit of the Turkish Police was in fact able to record the
transmissions and communications of the Al Quds Force, especially those of
General Sayed Ali Akber Mir Vakili, who was heard by the Turkish CS for having
received the recording of a confidential meeting of the Turkish Government
directly from Hakan Fidan.
But, obviously any intelligence
agent never says anything about his sources on the phone or by any other means.
What if Hakan Fidan was used also
by his government to come to an agreement with Iran?
What if Hakan Fidan was really Erdogan’s instrument to arrive at a
collaboration with Iran on Syria and, above all, in the framework of the Astana
talks and of the future Iranian oil and gas networks towards the Mediterranean?
Certainly Vakili was well trained to avoid being identified or heard,
but the Turkish police operatives had planted a bug in Mir Vakili’s car, driven
by his trusted man, Hakki Selgiuk Sanli, a Turk with extensive criminal
experience, who was also the key man in setting up the Turkish network of the
Al Quds Force in the 1990s, under the orders of Iranian General Nasir Takipur.
Sanli was arrested on May 13,
2000 and sentenced to 12 years and 6 months of prison, due to his participation
in a terrorist organization linked to Iran, which aimed at carrying out attacks
against Turkish and American targets.
Sanli, however, was released in 2004, with an amnesty signed by
Erdogan’s own government.
Finally, the recording from the bug in Mir Vakili’s car gave all the
coordinates of Hakan Fidan’s passage of confidential information on Turkey to
Mir Vakili, for example, told
Sanli he had spoken with Hakan Fidan (codename “Emin”) and he had
learned of a scandal that was mounting in Erdogan’s government at the very
beginning of the Gezi Park protests.
Erdogan, in fact, immediately
wanted to crack down hard on the Gezi Park revolt, while Deputy Prime Minister
Bulent Arinç wanted to come to a negotiation with the occupiers.
Arinç, in fact – who was acting
on behalf of Erdogan who was travelling to Africa – had already tried to reach
an agreement with the insurgency leaders. Nevertheless, the President returned
from his African tour and, after six hours of insults, he stopped Arinç’s
attempts. However, it was Fidan himself who revealed to his Iranian contacts
how Erdogan was particularly harsh on them too, of whom he suspected some heavy
hand in the riots in Turkey at the time.
Mir Vakili and Hakan Fidan often
saw each other in Turkey, especially in a well-known café in the centre of
Ankara’s Ĉukurambar district, an area where there was a large amount of
Islamists considered “radical” by Western banal standards.
Erdogan also thinks that Gűlen’s
network has something to do with AKP’s growing distance from Islamism, which
Westerners always foolishly define as “moderate”, which would lead to
a rapid downsizing of that party and hence to the end of Erdogan’s power.
Inter alia, it is now ascertained that Hakan Fidan had already organized
some meetings between Mir Vakili, Erdogan himself and the then Foreign Minister
Ahmed Davutoglu, who developed his “zero problems with neighbours”
And again, it was Hakan Fidan who
provided security cover for Mir Vakili, when he came to Ankara with his family
and some friends for shopping. Fidan even provided a State plane to the
Pasdaran General, so that he and his friends could go back safely to Tehran.
In all likelihood, this shows that – in his relations with the Islamic
Republic of Iran -Hakan Fidan has the government’s full support and, more
importantly, President Erdogan’s personal support.
However, which is the origin of Hakan Fidan’s interest in Shiism, to
which he probably belongs?
The Head of the Turkish
intelligence Services studied Shiite tradition and symbolism especially when he
was a very young volunteer non-commissioned officer in the Turkish forces.
It was at that moment that he was
noticed by the Iranian Al Quds Force, a military structure dealing with special
missions, intelligence and unconventional operations abroad.
Later it was Erdogan who studied him and then decided to appoint him, at
first, as Director of the Agency for Support to Development (TIKA), then as
Undersecretary of State and, in 2010, as MIT Director.
The lawsuit concerning the Head
of the Al Quds Force in Turkey, Mir Vakili, for his relations with Hakan Fidan,
was initiated when a criminal offence was reported by an anonymous person on
August 8, 2010.
In fact, it was a 54-year-old
woman, Kamile Yazicioglu, who had escaped from his partner, who informed the
counterintelligence of the fact he had worked, for many years, for the Iranian
intelligence and she brought to the police’s attention documents that proved
She repeated her testimony in the
appropriate fora, in sittings dating back to March and April 2011.
This led to the beginning of a
careful, three-yearly analysis of Ms. Yazicioglu’s partner by Turkish
The casewas coded 2011/762 by
It turned out, almost
immediately, that Ms. Yazicioglu’s partner was in direct contact with Hakan
Furthermore, the lady’s partner
had had problems with the police because he had taken part in the “Night
for Jerusalem”, an anti-Zionist demonstration in favour of the application
of Koranic law in Turkey – a street movement that had taken place in Ankara,
Sincan district, at the end of January 1997.
On that occasion, there was a
fiery speech by the Iranian Ambassador to Turkey.
Yazicioglu was also responsible
for education and culture in the Sincan district. He organized a Shiite
religious event, which was one of the reasons why the Armed Forces “closed
down” the government in 1997, thus putting an end to it.
In fact, the Turkish military
structures sent some tanks to show Sincan to what extent the Islamist
initiative had been disliked by the Turkish Armed Forces’ leadership.
In that case, Yazicioglu was
sentenced to over three years of prison for having supported a terrorist
After his release, he moved to
Istanbul, where he was not noticed until 2008, when he was reactivated by the
Moreover, Yazicioglu had maintained
excellent relations with the murderers of the journalist, Ugur Mumcu, and of
the university Professor, Muammer Aksoy.
The fact is that, according to
many testimonies, Hakan Fidan remained in close contact with the Iranians’
informant and met him several times.
Both Fidan’s son and Yazicioglu’s
son were enrolled at the Bilkent University of Ankara, and they were used as
channels of communication between the two.
Yazicioglu’s partner always
proclaimed she had always had close relations with MIT, and in any case she had
several passports hidden in her house, as well as copies of reports written by
her husband for the Iranian intelligence Services.
The primary task entrusted to her husband and her son by Iran was to
supervise the Nuclear Research and Training Centre in Čekmece, Istanbul,
probably sitting in a car to report remarkable data on a map, possibly with
some explanatory notes.
The Turkish operative had also
drawn the escape routes and the confidential entrances of that Nuclear Research
and Training Centre – a sign that he knew it well and from inside.
A job as labourer of the
intelligence Services, however, which certainly did not allow to have access to
the top managers, as it happened to Yazicioglu with Hakan Fidan.
Ms. Yazigioclu also stated before
the Turkish CS that her former husband had satellite photos of the US Consulate
in Istanbul and of the Israeli one.
Never underestimate an angry wife. The files found in Yazicioglu’s house
also concerned confidential military maps of the Adana and Gaziantep provinces
– now very important for the issue of migrants from Syria – and a series of
personal files of public figures, including those of some government members as
well as senior leaders of the ruling party, the AKP.
Another document found at Yazicioglu’s house – again thanks to Ms.
Yazicioglu’s help – concerned the names of young Turks included in some
terrorist organizations linked to the Pasdaran, especially young people who
expressed strongly anti-American and anti-Semitic views.
The documents seized also
concerned the methods of reporting and meeting with the Iranian agents, as well
as a video of the Turkish police showing a meeting between Yazicioglu and the
current Head of the al Quds Forcein Turkey, Naser Ghafari, who had the cover of
political attaché at the Consulate General of Iran to Ankara.
In May 2019, however, also Bashar el Assad revealed he had direct
contacts with Hakan Fidan in Tehran, but also on the Kassab border, where the
Syrian leader expressed his willingness to meet Erdogan as soon as possible.
In an interview with the Turkish journalist Mehmet Yuva, Assad stated he
wanted to cooperate with Turkey, and also maintained that Syria did not deal
with Turkey only indirectly – through Russia or Iran – but also through direct
meetings in various external fora.
Moreover, Erdogan knows very well
the U.S. “federal case” regarding an Iranian executive called Reza
Zarrab, who had been operating for years to avoid or manipulate U.S. sanctions
against his country.
Zarrab bribed many Turkish
Ministers and officials, including some members of Erdogan’s family.
Probably, the mechanism put in
place by Zerrab provided Erdogan’s family with vast wealth, in addition to
other sources of income.
As noted above, it was precisely Mir Vakili who informed us – through
Zerrab – that there were problems with the Turkish State bank, Halkbank, and
made us read about the relations between Zerrab and the then Turkish Economy
Minister, Zefer Caglayan.
The Minister himself enabled Zerrab to move the funds for foreign
operations without any problems, promising the Halkbank executives substantial
commissions on transfers.
Mir Vakili also informed – per tabulas- of the fact that there was
another Iranian operative behind Zerrab’s operations.
As proven by documents, after the
appointment of Hakan Fidan as Head of MIT, Erdogan himself met the Head of the
Iranian network in Turkey – who, at the time, was again Mir Vakili – to discuss
the Iranian oil operations through Turkey and to proceed to a possible alliance
between Iran – that Erdogan has often called his “second home” – and
the Turkish commercial and political elites.