A PAGE FROM SUSURLUK: DRUG MONEY IS BAILING OUT THE BANKS

“For years and years, information and evidence being collected by the counterintelligence operations of certain U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies has been prevented from being transferred to criminal and narcotics divisions, and from being shared with the Drug Enforcement Agency and others with prosecutorial power. Those with direct knowledge have been prevented from making this information available and public by various gag orders and invocation of the State Secrets Privilege. Why?”
~ Sibel Edmonds.

Well, well, well . . . it looks like drug money is being used to bail out banks in the global financial crisis, from Reuters:

The United Nations’ crime and drug watchdog has indications that money made in illicit drug trade has been used to keep banks afloat in the global financial crisis, its head was quoted as saying on Sunday.

Vienna-based UNODC Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa said in an interview released by Austrian weekly Profil that drug money often became the only available capital when the crisis spiralled out of control last year.

In many instances, drug money is currently the only liquid investment capital,” Costa was quoted as saying by Profil. “In the second half of 2008, liquidity was the banking system’s main problem and hence liquid capital became an important factor.”

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime had found evidence that “interbank loans were funded by money that originated from drug trade and other illegal activities,” Costa was quoted as saying. There were “signs that some banks were rescued in that way.”

Profil said Costa declined to identify countries or banks which may have received drug money and gave no indication how much cash might be involved. He only said Austria was not on top of his list, Profil said.

Why does this make me think “Susurluk”?

In a report published on 28 January 1997, the Turkish government’s chief inspector described how, in the juridical no-man’s land of Kurdish south-eastern Turkey, the army’s “special war” units were not just killing with impunity, but had also become involved in protection rackets, blackmail, rape and drug trafficking (1). The report also describes how the Turkish government handed over the security of a huge area – around the towns of Siverek and Hilvan – to the private army of tribal chief Sedat Bucak, a member of parliament close to the former prime minister, Tansu Çiller, who thus acquired the power of life and death over the area’s inhabitants.

This warlord politician was, incidentally, the sole survivor of a road accident in November 1996 near Susurluk on the road from Izmir to Istanbul (2). He had been travelling together with a chief of police and a well-known far-right Turkish mafia boss, Abdullah Çatli, who had been implicated in the attempted assassination of the Pope, was sought by Interpol for drug trafficking, and was wanted by the Turkish state for the murder of seven left-wing militants.

[ . . . ]

After the Gulf War in 1991, Turkey found itself deprived of the all-important Iraqi market and, since it lacked significant oil reserves of its own, it decided to make up for the loss by turning more massively to drugs. The trafficking increased in intensity with the arrival of the “hawks” in power, after the death in suspicious circumstances of President Turgut Özal in April 1993. According to the minister of interior, the war in Kurdistan had cost the Turkish exchequer upwards of $12.5 billion (7). Whereas, according to the daily Hürriyet, Turkey’s heroin trafficking brought in $25 billion in 1995 and $37.5 billion in 1996 (8).

Only criminal networks working in close cooperation with the police and the army could possibly organise trafficking on such a scale. Drug barons such as Huseyin Baybasin have stated publicly, on Turkish television and in the West, that they have been working under the protection of the Turkish government and to its financial benefit (9). The traffickers themselves travel on diplomatic passports. According to witnesses at the Parliamentary Commission inquiring into the Susurluk accident, the drugs are even transported by military helicopter from the Iranian border. The president of the commission himself, deputy Mehmet Erkatmis, has protested against the fact that these damning allegations have been censured out of the commission’s official report…

And only criminal networks working in close cooperation with governments could possibly be controlling drug-trafficking profits in order to bail out their own, worthless banks, headed and run by a pack of greedy parasites known collectively as CEOs.

Tansu Çiller was well-known for publicly broadcasting her claim that Turkey lost billions during the Gulf War:

Well, what we–we were never asked whether the United States should be bombing North Iraq, but our concern was the following. We have a neighborhood. That neighborhood is Syria and Iran and Iraq, and North of us is Russia, and West of us Greece, and each time a crisis occurs, everybody goes back home and forgets about it, but we are left with the neighborhood. And it has cost us $27 billion during the last five years, and our allies don’t turn around and recognize the need for that compensation.

Hence the need for the Çiller government to become an even bigger player in the international drug trade. It has been this “black money” that has helped to keep Turkey afloat ever since.

According to the minister of interior, the war in Kurdistan had cost the Turkish exchequer upwards of $12.5 billion (7). Whereas, according to the daily Hürriyet, Turkey’s heroin trafficking brought in $25 billion in 1995 and $37.5 billion in 1996 (8).

The Italians investigated and exposed part of the narco-trafficking beast that Abdullah Çatlı was involved in:

Catli’s thugs crisscrossed the infamous smugglers’ route passing through Bulgaria. Those routes were the ones favored by smugglers who reportedly carried NATO military equipment to the Middle East and returned with loads of heroin.

Judge Carlo Palermo, an Italian magistrate based in Trento, discovered these smuggling operations while investigating arms-and-drug trafficking from Eastern Europe to Sicily.

Judge Palermo disclosed that large quantities of sophisticated NATO weaponry — including machine guns, Leopard tanks and U.S.-built Cobra assault helicopters — were smuggled from Western Europe to countries in the Middle East during the 1970s and early 1980s.

According to Palermo’s investigation, the weapon delivers were often made in exchange for consignments of heroin that filtered back, courtesy of the Grey Wolves and other smugglers, through Bulgaria to northern Italy.

And the Vatican was involved (and probably still is):

Italian magistrates described the network they had uncovered as the “world’s biggest illegal arms trafficking organization.” They linked it to Middle Eastern drug empires and to prestigious banking circles in Italy and Europe.

At the center of this operation, it appeared, was an obscure import-export firm in Milan called Stibam International Transport. The head of Stibam, a Syrian businessman named Henri Arsan, also functioned as an informant for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, according to several Italian news outlets.

With satellite offices in New York, London, Zurich, and Sofia, Bulgaria, Stibam officials recycled their profits through Banco Ambrosiano, Italy’s largest private bank which had close ties to the Vatican until its sensational collapse in 1982.

The collapse of Banco Ambrosiano came on the heels of the still unsolved death of its furtive president, Roberto Calvi, whose body was found hanging underneath Blackfriar’s Bridge in London in June 1982. While running Ambrosiano, Calvi, nicknamed “God’s banker,” served as adviser to the Vatican’s extensive fiscal portfolio.

At the same time in the mid- and late 1970s, Calvi’s bank handled most of Stibam’s foreign currency transactions and owned the building that housed Stibam’s Milanese headquarters.

In effect, the Vatican Bank — by virtue of its interlocking relationship with Banco Ambrosiano — was fronting for a gigantic contraband operation that specialized in guns and heroin.

Also involved with Çatlı and the Gray Wolves was the CIA. But all of this is old news and very familiar to those who know about Susurluk. It’s also well-known that narcotics were transported through Turkey with official escorts, meaning the Ankara regime was helping to protect the transports. Perhaps not so well-known are the links from Susurluk and Turkey’s financing of itself with drug profits to today’s news that the narcotics industry is acting as a life preserver for the world’s banks. Sibel Edmonds shows us those links:

Taking Turkey as the focal point and with a start date of 1998, it is easy to speculate why Sibel Edmonds indicated that there was a convergence of US and foreign counter-narcotics, counter-terrorism and US national security and economic interests all of which were too preoccupied to surface critical information warning Americans of the attacks of September 11, 2001. After all, who would have believed drug runners operating in Central Asia? And besides, President Clinton was promoting Turkey, one of the world’s top drug transit points, as a model for Muslim-Western cooperation and a country necessary to reshape the Middle East.

The FBI’s Office of International Operations, in conjunction with the CIA and the US State Department counter-narcotics section, the United Kingdom’s MI6, Israel’s Mossad, Pakistan’s ISI, the US DEA, Turkey’s MIT, and the governments and intelligence agencies of dozens of nations, were in one way or another involved in the illicit drug trade either trying to stop it or benefit from it. What can be surmised from the public record is that from 1998 to September 10, 2001, the War on Drugs kept bumping into the nascent War on Terror and new directions in US foreign policy.

More, from Sibel herself:

Curiously enough, despite these highly publicized reports and acknowledgements of Turkey’s role in these activities, Turkey continues to receive billions of dollars of aid and assistance annually from the United States. With its highly placed co-conspirators and connections within the Pentagon, State Department and U.S. Congress, Turkey never has to fear potential sanctions or meaningful scrutiny; just like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. The criminal Turkish networks continue their global criminal activities right under the nose of their protector, the United States, and neither the catastrophe falling upon the U.S. on September Eleven, nor their direct and indirect role and ties to this terrorist attack, diminish their role and participation in the shady worlds of narcotics, money laundering and illegal arms transfer.

The ‘respectable’ Turkish companies established and operate bases in Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and other similar former soviet states. Many of these front companies, disguised under construction and tourism entities, have received millions of dollars in grants from the U.S. government, allocated to them by the U.S. congress, to establish and operate criminal networks throughout the region; among their networking partners are Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Albanian Mafia. While the U.S. government painted Islamic charity organizations as the main financial source for Al Qaeda terrorists, it was hard at work trying to cover up the terrorists’ main financial source: narcotics and illegal arms sales. Why?

For years and years, information and evidence being collected by the counterintelligence operations of certain U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies has been prevented from being transferred to criminal and narcotics divisions, and from being shared with the Drug Enforcement Agency and others with prosecutorial power. Those with direct knowledge have been prevented from making this information available and public by various gag orders and invocation of the State Secrets Privilege. Why?

Is this due to the fact that the existence and survival of many U.S. allies; Turkey, almost all Central Asian nations, and after the September Eleven attack, Afghanistan; greatly depend on cultivating, processing, transporting, and distributing these illegal substances? Is it caused by the fact that a major source of income for those who procure U.S. weapons and technology, our military industrial complex’s bread and butter, is being generated from this illegal production and illegal dealings? Or, is it the fear of exposing our own financial institutions, lobbying firms, and certain elected and appointed officials, as beneficiaries?

The need for the profits of the narcotics industry is another reason for the war in the Balkans. While the American investment banks were beginning their meltdown, Turkish heroin was moving through Albania.

Now it’s all spun wildly out of control and narco-profits are no longer enough to keep The System running. That’s why, in the US at least, trillions of tax dollars are going to the Wall Street parasites. It seems to me that the The System is going to need a hell of a lot more addicts in order to save itself.

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