• Istanbul airport attack is likely payback for lapse in loyalty.
By Richard Walker —
The June 29 massacre of 44 travelers and staff at the Istanbul airport is blowback for Turkey arming and training terror groups like Islamic State (ISIS), al Qaeda, and al-Nusra to fight its proxy wars in Syria and Iraq.
For decades, Turkey’s all-powerful intelligence service, MİT, or National Intelligence Organization, has been running operations with terrorists. Sometimes it has colluded with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Britain’s MI6, Israel’s Mossad, and the French General Directorate for External Security (DGSE).
As far back as the 1970s, the CIA and MİT used the Turkish terror group the Grey Wolves for black ops in the Middle East and Europe. Ali Agca, a member of the Grey Wolves, shot Pope John Paul II in 1981 in St. Peter’s Square.
In the past couple of years, MİT, along with Western and Arab intelligence agencies, has been recruiting and arming terrorists to overthrow the government of Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
It is very much like the situation decades ago when the CIA used the mujaheddin in Afghanistan to defeat the Soviets there. As we now know, Osama bin Laden and many of his fellow fighters turned on their United States benefactors and were pulled into an international conspiracy that resulted in the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans on September 11, 2001.
The lesson of history is that while intelligence agencies like the Mossad, the CIA and MİT expect the terrorists they support to do their bidding, the terrorists demand unquestioned loyalty in return. When loyalty fades there is payback.
In the past year, Turkey has been under increasing pressure from North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to sever its links to ISIS and its affiliates, and has been guaranteed billions of dollars and possible European Union membership for closing its border with Syria.
As Turkey began to turn on its evil pals, it was soon reminded by ISIS that such treachery has a price.
The Istanbul airport bombing was just one example of payback from ISIS and followed several bombings by the groups in Turkey this year.
There is a fascinating backstory to the Istanbul attack. The three bombers who blew themselves up in the airport were part of a larger cell, based in Istanbul. Its members had been trained in Syria by Ahmed “One-Arm” Chatayev, a Chechen from the Caucuses who has been on a Russian terror watch list since 2003.
Chechnya has terror ties to Dagestan, the birthplace of the Tsarnaev brothers who allegedly bombed the Boston Marathon.
Russia has been battling an Islamic insurgency in the Caucasus for decades. It is a region between the Black and Caspian seas with large Islamic communities, separated by the Caucasus Mountain range. When Russia began to warn the West about the flow of thousands of veteran terrorists from there to the Middle East, the West showed little concern because, along with Turkey and a few Arab states, it was busy training terrorists to force regime change in Syria under the guise of a “Free Syrian Army.” Foreign fighters were always welcome in its ranks.
The CIA and DGSE, however, concentrated their efforts on buying the loyalty of al Qaeda fighters they had used in Libya to overthrow Colonel Muammar Qadaffi. They transported these terrorists to Turkey and Jordan and then into Syria.
Since Turkey bordered the Caucasus, it used its MİT agents to bring the best Chechen fighters to Turkey to train other foreign fighters. One was the veteran “One-Arm” Chatayev who set up a terror training compound in Syria. He taught terrorists how to make and use suicide vests.
This year, the ISIS leadership called on him to teach Turkey a lesson since he knew Istanbul well, having spent time in the city when he was first recruited by the Turks. He had also done business in Turkey during his years as a mobster.
In February 2016, Russia provided the United Nations Security Council with evidence of Turkey’s alliance with terrorists and how it was transporting terrorists from the Caucasus and Central Asia to fight with ISIS and al Qaeda in Syria and Yemen. According to Russia, Turkey at one stage moved 1,000 fighters into Syria.
Turkey’s meddling in the crises in Syria, Yemen, and Iraq has been carried out in conjunction with several Arab states. The CIA has maintained close links with all these states, even ignoring the fact that they have financed terror, costing the lives of thousands of Americans.
The CIA has refused to condemn the Turks because the U.S. spy agency has, for decades, promoted a failed policy of supporting violent, radical sects of Sunni Muslims.
History has shown that this only makes sense if you are willing to turn a blind eye to global terror that leads to the deaths of thousands of innocent people.
A security source has confirmed that the Istanbul bomber mastermind, Chatayev, was arrested in the Bulgarian town of Plovdiv in 2011. Interpol had a warrant for him based on the fact he was on a Russian terror watch list. According to the source, Bulgaria, under pressure from U.S. authorities, was told to release him because he was a Chechen fighting Russia. He fled to Austria where he was given residency and then to Afghanistan. Later he was recruited by the Turks to fight in Syria.
Richard Walker is the pen name of a former N.Y. news producer.