Jul 16 2018

CIA collaborated with Gülen - Lobbyist

Turkey’s public enemy number one, Islamist preacher Fethullah Gülen, has U.S. politicians on his payroll and a history of cooperation with the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, London-based lawyer Robert Amsterdam told Turkish news channel A Haber in a filmed interview on Monday.

Amsterdam, on retainer by the Turkish government to lobby internationally against Gülen, discussed the fruits of his activities, which he said had accelerated legal repercussions against Gülen’s organisation in the United States and raised awareness about the group.

The group’s links to the CIA are a “long story,” said Amsterdam, adding that while he could not speak about the current situation, his research had led him to believe that much cooperation between the two has historically taken place.

The Turkish government describes Gülen and his followers as the “Fetullahist Terrorist Organisation,” or FETÖ, and says they had run a “parallel structure” by infiltrating the institutions of the Turkish state, funded in part by proceeds from Gülen’s international network of schools and other organisations and partly through illicit means.

Gülen’s presence in Pennsylvania, where he lives in self-imposed exile, have long stoked apprehension in Turkey that the preacher has the support of U.S. intelligence services.

In his 700-page book “Empire of Deceit,” Amsterdam makes serious allegations against the Gülenists’ large U.S. network of charter schools, which he says defrauded millions of dollars in U.S. taxpayer money through sophisticated construction and employment schemes.

The Gülenists were assisted in their theft of taxpayer money by the close relations they had built up with Christian and Jewish religious groups, said Amsterdam.

The group also enjoyed support from sympathetic politicians in the United States, many of whom were likely on the Gülenists’ payroll, said Amsterdam, a subject which he said would be the basis for his second book on the preacher.