Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Sibel, Giraldi, American Conservative Mag

Philip Giraldi from Cannistraro Associates has a column in the April 24 (print) edition of The American Conservative magazine about the story surrounding Sibel Edmonds.

According to Sibel, (no link, via email), this is "a fantastic short piece by Phil Giraldi; it sums up the case very well, considering the length... as far as published articles go, this one nails it 100%"

I've liberated the article from print (errors are mine):

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Sibel Edmonds, the Turkish FBI translator turned whistleblower who has been subjected to a gag order could provide a major insight into how neoconservatives distort US foreign policy and enrich themselves at the same time. On one level, her story appears straightforward: several Turkish lobbying groups allegedly bribed congressmen to support policies favourable to Ankara. But beyond that, the Edmonds revelations become more serpentine and appear to involve AIPAC, Israel and a number of leading neoconservatives who have profited from the Turkish connection. Israel has long cultivated a close relationship with Turkey since Ankara's neighbours and historic enemies - Iran, Syria and Iraq - are also hostile to Tel Aviv. Islamic Turkey has also had considerable symbolic value for Israel, demonstrating that hostility to Muslim neighbours is not a sine qua non for the Jewish state.

Turkey benefits from the relationship by securing general benevolence and increased aid from the US Congress - as well as access to otherwise unattainable military technology. The Turkish General Staff has a particular interest because much of the military spending is channeled through companies in which the generals have a financial stake, making for a very cozy and comfortable business arrangement. The commercial interest has also fostered close political ties, with the American Turkish Council, American Turkish Cultural Alliance and the Assembly of Turkish American Associations all developing warm relationships with AIPAC and other Jewish and Israel advocacy groups throughout the US.

Someone has to be in the middle to keep the happy affair going, so enter the neocons, intent on securing Israel against all comers and also keen to turn a dollar. In fact the neocons seem to have a deep and abiding interest in Turkey, which, under other circumstances, might be difficult to explain. Doug Feith's International Advisors Inc, a registered agent for Turkey in 1989 - 1994, netted $600,000 per year from Turkey, with Richard Perle taking $48,000 annually as a consultant. Other noted neoconservatives linked to Turkey are former State Department number three, Marc Grossman, current Pentagon Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman, Paul Wolfowitz and former congressman Stephen Solarz. The money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed. Some of it may come from criminal activity, possibly drug trafficking, but much more might come from arms dealing. Contracts in the hundreds of millions, or even billions of dollars provide considerable fat for those well placed to benefit. 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. The military-industrial-complex/neocon network is also well attested. Doug Feith has been associated with Northrup Grumman for years, while defense contractors fund many neocon-linked think tanks and "information" services. Feith, Perle and a number of other neocons have long had beneficial relationships with various Israeli defense contractors.

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It's interesting that there are some ongoing investigations.

(For my Sibel related posts - follow the links up at the top right hand corner of this page)

(update: see here for more on the curious fact that Sibel says that the lobbying money isn't coming from the Turkish government)

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update: more from giraldi here

16 comments:

noise said...

I don't get it. Are these investigations...ie...Abramoff, Wilkes, Plame and AIPAC...intended to fool the public into thinking the "system" works?

What is the GUT dammit? :)

lukery said...

be patient grasshopper :-)

that sound you hear is the administration imploding.

Miguel said...

"The money involved does not appear to come from the Turkish government, and FBI investigators are trying to determine its source and how it is distributed."

Is the FBI really investigating? I thought all investigations were quashed by State Secrets?

BTW, my father works for Northrup Gruman. I recently bought him one of Calipendence's "Free Sibel Edmonds" coffee mugs. Hopefully, dad will retire this year. I really hate defense contracting companies- I actually have more respect for the drug runners.

One more thing- Scott Horton specifically asked Phillip Giraldi about the Sibel Edmonds case in a Sept. or Octobe 25 interview, and Giraldi expressed ignorance about the whole thing. It looks like he's done a little research since then.

lukery said...

I thought all investigations were quashed by State Secrets?
i dont know the details - but i only 'know' that sibel was squashed by States Secrets. Let's hope Giraldi is correct.

lol - funny about your dad. does he take the mug to work? if anyone else wants a mug - you can get one here cafepress.com/freesibel

i dont remember that part of the scott/giraldi interview - if only giraldi had dropped by here he could have learnt all he needs to know...

Don said...

Investigators are also looking at Israel's particular expertise in the illegal sale of US military technology to countries like China and India.

I'd wondered about that more than a few times. I'm a bit of a military aviation buff, and have noted more than a few references over the years to Elta-developed upgrade packages (incl. avionics and weapons) for ex-Soviet developed fighters, most of whose operaters aren't on the US-friendly list.

More alarmingly, the latest Chinese fighter, the J-10 , easily a full generation ahead of anything they've previously developed indigenously, bears very striking resemblance to the IAI Lavi whose development was terminated under US pressure in the early 80s. I recall reading somewhere that there was speculation of Israeli aid in it's design. Considering estimates put it on par with almost anything in the West, it's baffled me why there was no uproar over possible Israeli influence.

theBhc said...

Giraldi's article certainly lends more credence to the idea that the White House outed Plame to shut down any investigations of weapons trafficking of more than just their own possible covert help for Turkey, but also the whole network of neocons involved appears to be motivation enough to shut down the CIA work.

Miguel said...

Lukery,
In case any of your readers are confused about what an "end user certificate" looks like, here is an actual example posted by PBS' Frontline:
http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/stories/sierraleone/enduser.html

That should be pretty self-explanatory. Some of the arms meant for Israel and Turkey are actually being resold by the Turks and Israelis to countries/organizations to which arms sales were technically prohibited. We can think of a few candidates besides China and India- one of which could be a little organization known as al-Qaeda?

Certainly this type of thing must go on all the time, wouldn't you think so? The only difference here may be the sheer scale and audacity of the operation- and the fact that some of the arms may have been sent to the same terrorists that attacked us on 9/11.

viget said...

Speaking of end user certificates, if you guys haven't yet seen the Nicolas Cage move, "Lord of War" it's worth a peek. Supposedly it's based in part on real life events. But Cage's character, the protagonist if you will, is often found forging these end-user certificates so that he can get a "friendly" gov't to transship the weapons to African warlords.

In short, the movie makes it look rather easy to run guns; I won't say any more so as to not spoil the ending, but suffice it to say, that even if one were to get caught, the kinds of arrangements that this piece points to makes it conceivable that pressure can be brought to bear on international enforcement mechanisms to look the other way.

lukery said...

thnx don

thebhc - yep - we've long thought the GetWilson story was nonsense

lukery said...

miguel - thanks for that link. i'd expect that the INC fraud shop could crank this stuff out every day of the week.
let's hope that there arent any terrorists - state or otherwise - with their hands on any of this dangerous stuff.

viget - i'll have to check that out. thnx. can i guess the 'arrangements' sound like bribes and blackmail?

Jamie said...

So when can we stop being patient?

Just teasing you. I lost my patience with these a-holes years ago. Fitzgerald = Fiske = Starr. All cover-up artists; none honest. I spit on them all.

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