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MEHMET Y. YILMAZ >‘Major O.K.’

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The person who played one of the most important roles in the defeat of the July 15 coup attempt was a Turkish Air Forces major, who went to the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) headquarters to warn that MİT undersecretary Hakan Fidan was to be kidnapped by a group of soldiers at midnight. 

From journalist Hande Fırat’s book, we learned that the initials of the name of this major are H.A. However, a reader then warned that the initials H.A. stood for “Hayalet Adam” (“ghost person” in Turkish), as intelligence organizations often define such people.   

According to a report in daily Cumhuriyet, the actual initials of this major are O.K. The prosecutor who is conducting the investigation at the army aviation, while he was preparing his indictment wanted to talk to this major, but MİT would not allow him. 

Because of this, we do not exactly know how the major informed MİT, what he told them. Naturally, we do not know why the major has only gone to MİT and not also the Office of the Chief of General Staff or the Police. 

According to the story in daily Cumhuriyet, O.K. was dismissed from the army with a state of emergency decree shortly after the coup attempt. But later, again with a state of emergency decree, he was returned to his post. As a “protection and reward” for his role in the defeat of the coup attempt he is now serving in the National Intelligence Organization (MİT). 

Now, the MİT - which has O.K. as a staff member - has not even replied to the prosecutor who requested to take his statement. 

It may be absurd that the identity of Major O.K. is concealed now that the coup and the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETÖ) threats are dismissed, but it is understandable. However, it is not at all possible to understand why the major was not sent to the office of the prosecutor to give his statement. 

This is important because the Deputy Chief of General Staff Gen. Ümit Dündar, in his statement to the parliamentary commission investigating the coup attempt, said the following: “If the coup tipoff had arrived [with us], the Chief of General Staff could have given other orders and the attempt could have been prevented from the start.” 

In order to enlighten why the coup attempt was not able to be prevented from the start, it is important to know what the major “tipped off.” Did he say there was a coup attempt? Or did he only say the MİT undersecretary was going to be kidnapped? 

If he tipped off about the coup attempt and the necessary orders were not given, we should also learn why. 

If the tip off was only about the MİT undersecretary being kidnapped, then the question of why the Chief of General Staff and MİT Undersecretary did not evaluate this tipoff as a coup attempt comes up. 
Can we say there is actually a genuine desire to enlighten every incident regarding this coup attempt? 

Playing into the hands of FETÖ

Daily Cumhuriyet staff recently completed their 200th day in prison. Editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu, head of the Cumhuriyet executive committee Akın Atalay, book supplement editor Turhan Günay, writer and consultant Kadri Gürsel, ombudsman Güray Öz, cartoonist Musa Kart, writer Hakan Kara, lawyers Bülent Utku and Mustafa Kemal Güngör, and executive Önder Çelik have been in Silivri prison, near Istanbul, for over 200 days.

The court has accepted their indictment, but when you read it the only thing you can see is that a crime has been “invented.” There is no concrete proof; there is no tangible “organizational relation.” They are accused based purely on articles in which they expressed their opinions. 

The same goes for journalists, writers and academics Nazlı Ilıcak, Ahmet Turan Alkan, Ali Bulaç, Mehmet Altan, Ahmet Altan and Mümtazer Türköne. 

The accusations are the same, again based on pieces in which they expressed their opinions. 

Fellow arrested journalists Ahmet Şık, Tunca Öğreten and most recent victim Oğuz Güven are the same. What they call “evidence” are the stories they have written and the headlines they have used.

This is not an effective way to fight the FETÖ gang. On the contrary, keeping journalists in pre-trial arrest and demanding heavy penalties for them only plays into the hands of this gang. In the end, Turkey has a hard time convincing democratic Western circles. 

The fact that the head of this gang, Fethullah Gülen, is able to pass himself off as a victim in such a newspaper as The Washington Post stems partly from the fact that so many journalists are in prison in Turkey on baseless accusations.

May/20/2017

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