There is no way I could be the only interested party in trekking the globally interesting as well as chilling mafia’s Sedat Peker revelations on Turkey. Millions of other people were and are still doing it.
In the course of undertaking the exercise concerning this brain behind one of the most powerful mafia groups in Turkey, his surname, online products and their possible implications, my mind created two systemic rhythmical lines. The first: Whether Peker was pecking Erdogan and AKP ranks? The second: Whether in terms of mafia, Peker was an ‘online’ and Erdogan ‘offline’?
A long time ally of Erdogan, kingmaker of interior ministry post holders,the kingpin of dissident assassinations inside and outside the country, Turkish-born ‘fugitive’ Peker turns round like a trapped cat. He spills beans or, better put, lifts the lid off the can of disgraceful and reason-beating government and ruling party links with organized crime operations over the years AKP has been in power (about two decades).
Many questions arise from what Peker has decided to do.
Question One: What are these bad-to-taste allegations raised by Peker? Turkish-born ultra-nationalist Sedat Peker makes serious allegations of the presence of “deep state” in Turkey headed by former Interior Minister Mehmet Agar. He also alleges Mehmet Agar and his son, Tolga Agar, a deputy for AKP party, were involved in a suspicious death of 21-year-old Kazakh journalist, Yeldana Kaharman. Prosecutors quickly closed the case file despite contrary postmortem results about suicide allegations. He raises shocking revelations about state-mafia relations involving drug trafficking and murders implicating officials from AKP.
He has also accused former prime minister’s son of smuggling cocaine from Venezuela as part of trafficking network stretching through the casino economy of northern Cyprus and a Syrian regime controlled port. Former PM is reported to have confirmed the visit but for donating masks and PPE from Turkey. A university of Cambridge reader in international relations, Dr. Ayse Zarakol, is quoted as saying that some U.S.–Turkey relations key figures during the Donald Trump rule are mentioned in the allegations.
Question Two: What implications do the allegations manifest? The face value is all about raising shocks. It’s inconceivable that leaders of a government and party in power have links with organized crime. It’s a shame. It’s contradictory. Heads have to roll. Erdogan has been trapped between mafia relations and his political, religious, ethnic and economic allies. It’s a historical scandal in Turkey. One opposition party leader says the revelations touch state dignity.
Former Justice Minister and now member of the Presidency Higher Advisory Board, Cemil Cicek urged the Judiciary to investigate Peker claims. “If even one-thousands of these claims are true, this is a disaster and very problematic…Turkey has had enough experience in the past concerning similar issues. We should learn the necessary lessons. The relevant prosecutor needs to take action and do what is necessary.” What safe distance from the “deep state” can Cemil Cicek create under such serious allegations?
Question Three: What is the vision of Peker about his homeland? An ultra-nationalist, Peker, who won Erdogan’s trust due to his ‘positive’ links with AKP youth, confesses participation in several crimes. Now he is calling on the very youth to challenge the political status quo! “My precious brothers, my brothers under the age of 40… You should make a new world, a new country, in this country; the country needs its 84 million (people) to be one.”
Question Four: Is Peker then really no longer in love with Erdogan and AKP? Have they parted ways? I think not quite. I think he is helping Erdogan to weed risks from the party ranks while eliminating the opposition as much as possible. Chances are that Erdogan could even be part of the “offline” plot. He is a senior mafia in spirit and soul. He has the power. He wants to stay with it. The regime which is monitoring even the innocent from ante-natal clinic stages is the one that let Peker leave the country! He couldn’t have escaped. And then as a cover-up (mock?) raid is conducted on his house when there are just mother and children!
Typical of past, present and future dictators, Erdogan is set to sacrifice anything, in whatever way, to ensure that different opinion – whether it be political, ethnical, faith (irrespective of geographical borders) —is given the least survival chance. The best performer here is mafia. This is where the mafia links become the most efficient provider.
Their operations don’t respect even family lines. It doesn’t matter whether the perceived dissident in a son, daughter, in-law or uncle, religious leader or just a suspicious political ally. These must go. Very recently, Erdogan agents came all the way to Kenya’s capital Nairobi in East Africa and kidnapped a simple teacher on allegations of being Gulenist. How could have Peker survived unless he is part of the operations?
Erdogan and Peker are one. Peker addresses Erdogan as “Brother Tayyip.” How many people can do that without risking “insulting the president charge in court?”
Consider the following facts’ sequence.
Based on his Sedat Peker revelations, his young brother, Atilla Peker, is arrested. This must have been calculated for him to confirm his brother claims that the mobster sent him on a mission to kill Turkish Cypriot journalist Kutlu Adali on the orders of former Turkish minister and police chief Mehmet Agar (in 1996). But later he is told by MIT military officer and an MIT agent (Korkut Eken) that “another team” had killed the journalist.
Meanwhile, a Turkish court has rules to reverse the acquittal of 19 people, including former interior minister in a trial involving the enforced disappearance or execution of 18 people in Turkey’s south east in the 1990s at the hands of Gendarmerie Intelligence and Counterterrorism (JITEM), according to Turkish media outlets. This opens doors to fresh trial. At the same time, it is learnt that in line with the 1st Criminal Chamber of the Ankara Regional Court dated April 5th, former interior minister and police officer Mehmet Agar, and former military and intelligence officer Korkut Eken, will also be retired. What a mafia line?
Question Five: What is “Brother Tayyip” response to Peker? While Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu simply referred to Peker as a “dirty mafia leader”, President Erdogan told an AKP meeting: “We have always been at the side of our interior minister in his fight against criminal gangs and terrorist organizations and we will continue to be there. Our nation sees who walks with terrorist organizations and the sworn enemies of Turkey.”
Elaborating more on the drug issue, he said in the last three-and-half years, 85,000 drug trafficking suspects had been detained in more than 530,000 operations while law enforcers confiscated $63 billion worth of illegal drugs. He promised to continue a fight against criminal organizations “without compromise”.
Question Six: Where is Turkey headed to? This is the multi-lira question. Former head of counter-terrorism for MIT Mehmet Eymur is quoted by the media as saying: “Today’s picture is even worse. At that time (1990s) at least there was a functioning structure. We were doing our duty and we were doing it seriously…. In the 1990s there was not much shady activity. It was not at this level… The end of this is to be political murders.”
This cannot be ruled out. IYI (Good) Party leader Meral Aksener, after visiting Erdogan’s home town, Rize, being confronted by AKP members and threatened by Erdogan, said: “Even if I’m killed, even if I’m left alone, I am a dishonest and dishonest person if I abandon my struggle.” She referred to Netanyahu as “the Israel version of Erdogan”.
What were the words of Erdogan? The people of Rize would not stand for the president being grouped with “baby killers like Netanyahu”. He must have forgotten the mother-and-child tortures going on in Turkey’s prisons. Apparently he did not also appreciate the fact the villagers Aksener was visiting were protesting against a stone quarry in the area operated by a pro-government Cengiz Holding.
However, the observation of the former intelligence officer holds water based on Erdogan’s own words that: “Ms Daughter-in-Law (Aksener) compares me with Netanyahu and goes to my hometown of Rize and got a lesson there. This is Rize. She should thank God the Rize residents didn’t go any further. She should pray that they didn’t go too far while teaching her a lesson…” What did he mean by “too far”?
President Erdogan claimed that AKP has gained credibility over the 19 years it has been in power but does not explain reasons behind incidents like the most recent detention of the Health and Social Service Employees Union (SES) chair, Selma Atabey, and seven members for alleged terror links. They include former co-chairs Gonul Erden and Bedriye due to their alleged links with outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (KPP). On the heels of this was taking into custody 49 people, including local chairs and former mayors from the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) on “suspected membership in a terrorist organization.” Do such incidents display credibility?
Peker “online” revelations put aside, Turkey politics is more hit than Erdogan’s “offline” activities. Mafia whistleblowers, if anything, divert people’s attention to pertinent problems. How does one open a meat shop and leave it under the guard of hyenas?