Sunlight Foundation’s Second Exposé: The Turkish Lobby


The MIC-Foreign Lobby at Work

Luke Rosiak of Sunlight Foundation has published the second installment of his series on the Turkish Lobby. I strongly urge you to read it. Here are a few excerpts:

    The Defense Department’s request last week for congressional approval of the sale of $8 billion worth of PAC-3 missiles to Turkey was the latest victory for a disparate group of interests including defense contractors, finance and energy corporations, trade groups, the Turkish government and a well-financed network of domestic advocacy groups. Intersecting interests have led them to join forces and lobby on a number of issues, including the characterization of distant historical events.

    Turkey and the domestic advocacy groups that promote the interests of Turkish-Americans did so to protect the Turkey’s image, while U.S. companies sought to bolster their own bottom lines. The efforts appear to have been successful for all the parties.

Here is a very ‘interesting’ player named by Rosiak: Hittite Microwave

    Turkey’s efforts have now been augmented by a domestic effort launched by a Turkish-American entrepreneur. Yalcin Ayasli founded Hittite Microwave in 1985 as a one-man company with a grant from the U.S. Air Force, and built the electronics company into a firm worth $1.2 billion, with half of its products sold overseas, according to a company presentation. The company had $180 million in revenue in 2008, according to SEC filings.

    Since 2004, Hittite Microwave has received roughly $30 million in contracts directly from the government—mostly to sponsor research and development—and has also done business with Lockheed Martin and other prime contractors, many of whom use Hittite electronics in their jets and other equipment, sold to both the U.S. military and Turkey.

    In 2007, Ayasli transferred $30 million in stock to fund a new endeavor, the nonprofit Turkish Coalition of America. The organization is headquartered in a Washington suite that has also been listed as the address for the Turkish Coalition USA PAC, the lobbying firm of Lydia Borland (who has represented the Turkish government), and the law firm of Bruce Fein and Associates (Fein comprises half of the Turkish American Legal Defense Fund).

Visit the site and read the entire piece here, and pay a lot of attention to ‘Hittite Microwave.’ In what context? Those of you who have followed my case and past interviews are very familiar with my using the label ‘Shady Turkish Front Companies.’

For now, let’s forget about the ‘classified’ and ‘buried’ aspects, and take a look at the following public information available on ‘Hittite Microwave’:

The Department of Commerce charged the multi-billion dollar company, Hittite Microwave, with 7 violations which occurred in 2000-2001:

    6 Violations of Exporting Items without the Required Licenses, and

    1 Violation of False Statement on Shipper’s Export Declaration Concerning Authority to Export

Hittite Microwave accepted all charges and agreed to pay the imposed fine.

Now, let’s keep this thought, and go back and read a brief but very informative piece written by Philip Giraldi, the Retired CIA Officer who used to be stationed in Turkey. It’s a short piece, and here is the relevant paragraph for our purposes on this post:

    Investigators are also looking at Israel’s particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India. Fraudulent end-user certificates produced by Defense Ministries in Israel and Turkey are all that is needed to divert military technology to other, less benign, consumers.

I took the liberty of highlighting the ‘key phrase’: Fraudulent End-User Certificates.

Now, I want to present you with a related article on the Nuclear Black Market. It’s a lengthy article, so I will point out the relevant info:

    Karni then contacted Zeki Bilmen, head of Giza Technologies of Secaucus, N.J. On Aug. 6, Giza ordered 200 of the switches from PerkinElmer for $89,400, submitting certificates saying they would be used in a Soweto, South Africa, hospital.

    Traffickers frequently ship restricted U.S. items to Dubai, Malta and other unrestricted trade zones worldwide and then re-export them to third countries to hide the origin or destination and avoid laws aimed at curbing nuclear proliferation, authorities say.

    Giza, which had certified to PerkinElmer that the switches were for hospital use, sent them to Karni's Cape Town office by declaring them "electrical splices and couplings for switchings," which don't require an export license, Brigham's affidavit says. Providing such false or misleading information is a violation of federal law, he noted.

    In court records, authorities said Karni often sent air freight to Pakistan and that he either completed or discussed other suspicious deals. In one, Karni bought for Khan a type of sophisticated oscilloscope often used in nuclear weapons and military programs, also through Giza.

    Bilmen, of Giza Technologies, has not been charged. His lawyer, Robert C. Herbst, said Giza employees "were a victim of Asher Karni as much as anyone else was."

Zeki Bilmen of Giza Technology was a Turkish Businessman. This important piece of information was omitted by LA Times, although they were well aware of it. Giza Technologies’ CEO Zeki Bilmen happened to be a much higher-level operator in this highly distorted LA Times story than even Karni. Citing this fact, mentioning the Turkish connection, and going after Giza Technologies, would have cost a lot when it came to our MIC, oil companies, certain elected and appointed officials, and the Turkish operatives and lobbyists in US.

Now, back to our multi-billion-dollar and highly connected Hittite Microwave. In those Department of Commerce violations case, Ayasli’s company was playing in the same game as Karni and Giza Technologies. Of course they got away with a slap on the wrist. Their protectors, our MIC + the State Department and Congressional guardian angels + the ‘lobby, made sure Hittite got off the hook and flourished even further under their protective umbrella.

Did the FBI notify the Department Commerce of it’s own files on Giza & Hittite? One wonders. How many people know about the relationship and business partnership between Hittite Microwave & Giza Technologies in the late 90s and early 2000? One wonders. Will we get to read further investigative reports on how the American Turkish Council (ATA) and ATAA facilitate these nuclear and illegal weapons market related operations via False End-User Certificates? I certainly hope so.

Again, I want to thank Sunlight Foundation for this excellent investigative piece. Let’s hope no one from the ‘establishment’ gets to them. I’ve seen it happen in the past. Please visit their site and show your support.

Please stay tuned for BREAKING NEWS tomorrow. I will need your support in having it disseminated. Please visit this site tomorrow for the latest.

The ATAA: Deep State & Psychosis

Contributed by Mizgin

"Psychosis, with adjective psychotic, literally means abnormal condition of the mind, and is a generic psychiatric term for a mental state often described as involving a "loss of contact with reality". People suffering from psychosis are said to be psychotic."
~ Wikipedia.

Last week someone kindly brought to my attention the fact that Günay Hakkı Övünç (Evinch, according to his Americanized spelling) had become the president of the Assembly of Turkish American Associations (ATAA). Rastî readers will remember Övünç in connection with an American-based Turkish mercenary company that has a training facility in Silopi. More on that from Yeni Özgür Politika:

On some 1,000 acres of land between Silopi and the Habur Border Crossing the Black Hawk Security Company is working feverishly using up to 20 trucks carrying sand, five heavy plant and various other vehicles to get the base finished. The company was reportedly structured according to a model used by the Special Forces. The Washington-based company is shaping its organizations in Turkey and Iraq in order to meet the requirements of a low intensity war. With a cadre comprised of retired soldiers and intelligence operatives taken from special units the company provides a broad spectrum of activities including armored convoy security, defense tactics, low intensity combat, counter-terrorism and intelligence, air operations and hostage rescue.

The company, which has named its site in Habur "Black Hawk 1 Headquarters," will also have three other HQs in Zakho, Kirkuk and Baghdad.

The company will also have over 1,000 "retired" military personnel from the Turkish army attached to it. They will undergo a short refresher training course at the HQ in Silopi. At the Habur HQ, where some 300 service personnel will also be on duty, there will be a mobile hospital, a helipad, one casevac helicopter, one escort helicopter, and 300 vehicles including armed Hummers, and a truck park for 8,000 vehicles.

[ . . . ]

Günay Hakkı Övünç: Company partner and legal architect Günay Hakkı Övünç owns a law practice in Washington. Övünç, who for years has pursued law suits in the United States filed by the Turkish Embassy and the General Staff, is also the American-Turkısh Assembly's deputy chairman in charge of Washington.

Also involved in Black Hawk Security, Inc. is the TSK's retired Lieutenant General Köksal Karabay, who was in charge of Turkish special forces when American marines "bagged" them on 4 July, 2003.

YÖP asks some pertinent questions about the purpose of "Black Hawk 1 HQ" at the Habur border crossing:

The company will also have over 1,000 "retired" military personnel from the Turkish army attached to it. They will undergo a short refresher training course at the HQ in Silopi. At the Habur HQ, where some 300 service personnel will also be on duty, there will be a mobile hospital, a helipad, one casevac [medevac] helicopter, one escort helicopter, and 300 vehicles including armed Hummers, and a truck park for 8,000 vehicles.

[ . . . ]

There are many unanswered questions such as how did the partners meet one another, why did they take on this job, how did they get permission, what kind of relationship do they have with the US authorities, with whom do they share the intelligence they obtain, when the day comes how are they going to use "Turkish-Kurdish-Arab" and perhaps even American personnel, and are they simply going to be escorting trucks and nothing more? As part of an agreement made with this company the Koc Group and Milangaz Company send 1,600 tankers of LPG into Iraq every month. They send 200 tankers of aviation fuel ever day. They provide 70 percent of the United States requirement for diesel fuel via this crossing. When they talk about "security for Turkish trucks" they mean these tankers. However, this much military hardware and these names beg other questions.

Indeed.

Another interesting fact about Övünç is that he's from Chicago. According to the Sibel Edmonds case, Turkish nationals were apparently deeply engaged in covert activity in two major American cities and one of those was Chicago:

It may be more than another embarrassing security scandal. One counter-intelligence official familiar with Edmonds’s case has told Vanity Fair that the F.B.I. opened an investigation into covert activities by Turkish nationals in the late 1990’s. That inquiry found evidence, mainly via wiretaps, of attempts to corrupt senior American politicians in at least two major cities—Washington and Chicago. Toward the end of 2001, Edmonds was asked to translate some of the thousands of calls that had been recorded by this operation, some dating back to 1997.

[ . . . ]

. . . in December 2001, Joel Robertz, an F.B.I. special agent in Chicago, contacted Sibel and asked her to review some wiretaps. Some were several years old, others more recent; all had been generated by a counter-intelligence that had its start in 1997. “It began in D.C.,” says an F.B.I. counter-intelligence official who is familiar with the case file. “It became apparent that Chicago was actually the center of what was going on.”

I wonder how close a relationship there is between Övünç and another Turkish Chicagoan, Mehmet Çelebi, whose fundraising for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign was eventually dropped faster than a hot potato.

We know that sometime in 2005 or, perhaps, very early 2006, Övünç was "summoned" to Iraq, in Övünç's own words:

I was summoned to Baghdad. As I did not want to worry my wife, I told her I was going to Turkey for a conference on the Armenian matter – which was true. But, the complete truth was that after the conference I would continue to Iraq via Istanbul Atatürk International Airport, one of the safest routes to Baghdad for civilians. Passengers go through four levels of security checks, and the pretty woman sitting next to you in the plane might be a Turkish sky marshal who can break your neck faster than you can say, “Turkish Delight.”

So who "summoned" him and for what purpose? Inquiring minds want to know.

What may be even more scary is the ATAA's president-elect, Ergün Kirlikovalı (Check the ATAA's board of directors page for verification). He should be Övünç's successor as president of the ATAA in the not-too-distant future. You can get an idea of some of the things Kirlikovalı believes in these comments to a Forbes opinion piece asking, "Should Turkey Apologize to the Armenians".

Or check out a blog entry at the Orange County Weekly, which has a lot of interesting links to comments Kirlikovali is making all over the Internet . . . Like his psychotic babbling here or his anti-Mexican rant here.

Can someone explain to me how Kirlikovalı's ranting squares with Övünç's vision for the ATAA in a statement last month, in which he says, "ATAA is a proud interlocutor, as the voice of reason and credibility in Washington DC for nearly 500,000 Turkish and Turkic Americans nationwide"? And why is it that we should believe the psychotic ravings of the future president of the ATAA on his word alone?