Turkey said on Friday it was considering scaling back its relations with Israel to a minimum after nine of its nationals were killed in an Israeli sea raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship earlier this week...
U.S. President Barack Obama said the incident at sea in which nine international pro-Palestinian activists were killed...
Well, now that we're all aware nine were killed, how about telling us something about the terrorism-linked organization (IHH) that sent them into battle? Like:Israeli officials have defended their security forces after the nine Turkish nationals were killed aboard the Turkish-flagged vessel boarded by Israeli commandos.
... the phenomenon of charitable front groups that provide support to Al-Qaida is by no means exclusively limited to the Arabian Peninsula. Indeed, elsewhere in the Muslim world, other such entities have been established with near equal success – as in Turkey, with the so-called Foundation for Human Rights, Liberties, and Humanitarian Relief (IHH). Turkish authorities began their own domestic criminal investigation of IHH as early as December 1997, when sources revealed that leaders of IHH were purchasing automatic weapons from other regional Islamic militant groups. IHH’s bureau in Istanbul was thoroughly searched, and its local officers were arrested. Security forces uncovered an array of disturbing items, including firearms, explosives, bomb-making instructions, and a “jihad flag.” After analyzing seized IHH documents, Turkish authorities concluded that “detained members of IHH were going to fight in Afghanistan, Bosnia, and Chechnya.”
According to a French intelligence report, the terrorist infiltration of IHH extended to its most senior ranks. The report, written by famed counterterrorism magistrate Jean-Louis Bruguiere, revealed that IHH President Bulent Yildrim had directly conspired in the mid-1990s to “recruit veteran soldiers in anticipation of the coming holy war [jihad]. In particular, some men were sent into war zones in Muslim countries in order to acquire combat experience.” Furthermore, in the hopes of “obtaining political support from these countries, financial aid was transferred [on behalf of IHH], as well as caches of firearms, knives, and pre-fabricated explosives.” An examination of IHH’s phone records in Istanbul showed repeated telephone calls in 1996 to an Al-Qaida guesthouse in Milan and various Algerian terrorist operatives active elsewhere in Europe – including the notorious Abu el-Ma`ali, who has been subsequently termed by U.S. officials as a “junior Osama Bin Laden.”
As the report from the Danish Institute for International Studies above clearly demonstrates, not only is the IHH linked to global Islamic jihad, the Turkish government was well aware of this when the flotilla set out for Gaza. Moreover, Israel implored the Turkish authorities to help in the effort to stop or divert the Turkish-registered ships so as to avoid a confrontation, but the Turks refused. Thus, it is the Turkish government -- now hypocritically condemning Israel -- which, along with the IHH, bears responsibility for the deaths of "nine of its nationals".During the later Seattle trial of would-be Al-Qaida Millenium bomber Ahmed Ressam, federal prosecutors called French magistrate Bruguiere to the stand as an expert witness. Bruguiere testified that IHH had played “[a]n important role” in the Al-Qaida Millenium bomb plot targeting LAX. Under repeated questioning, Bruguiere insisted that “[t]here’s a rather close relation”:
The IHH is an NGO, but it was kind of a type of cover-up… in order to obtain forged documents and also to obtain different forms of infiltration for Mujahideen in combat. And also to go and gather[recruit] these Mujahideens. And finally, one of the last responsibilities that they had was also to be implicated or involved in weapons trafficking.
All of this is apparently lost on Reuters which continues to maintain a blackout on the facts.