This subject still remains very fishy. Let’s accept that Adil Öksüz was a high-ranking member of a Gülenist fellowship, or the Gülenist fellowship, if there was one giant conspiracy. His presence near the Akıncı airbase where he was arrested the morning after the coup attempt lacked a plausible explanation. But there is also no good explanation for his subsequent apparent leisurely escape and disappearance, as thoroughly explored here by John Butler.
Perhaps the extent of Gülenist infiltration of the Air Force had not yet been investigated, but Öksüz was a civilian, and known to Turkish security and law enforcement services. Gülen’s former high ranking associate stated that in the years of 2012 and 2013, he told Turkish Intel Services about Adil Öksüz and what is he doing with regards to Military recruitment.
The Gülen Movement had been under scrutiny and persecution since at least early 2014, and Gülen himself had been proclaimed Turkey’s prime enemy. There was reason to anticipate a coup among Gülen-affiliated military officers facing dismissal (and perhaps long unemployment, or worse) in a few weeks, and surely the government was aware that there were non-Gülenist officers who might join them.
Nevertheless, although Öksüz, a known Gülenist operative, traveled to the US three times in 2016 before the coup, according to what is reported, Turkish intelligence apparently did not keep track of where he went or whom he met. No evidence has been offered that he met with Gülen in recent times, or a plausible emissary from Gülen. Most recently F24 journalists asked about Adil Öksüz to Gulen himself, and Gulen responded that: ”With regards to coup… I dont know if Adil Öksüz came here.”
The location of Gülen’s compound in rural Pennsylvania was well known, and it was also well known that he rarely left it. One would think that, given Gülen’s claimed importance as a threat to Turkey’s national security, Turkish intelligence would have kept the compound under surveillance and noted who came and went. Surveillance from public roads without entering the compound would have been legal, and private detectives could have been hired to do it, through Turkey’s US lawyer Robert Amsterdam or someone else. It would have been expensive, but not out of line with the millions of dollars Turkey was spending on lobbying (and harassing the Gülen movement) in the US. Yet either this was not done, or if it was, detectives saw nothing.
Perhaps Öksüz met with Gülen or a deputy. As the saying goes, absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. But absence of evidence together with absence of investigation can be meaningful. Given Öksüz’s remarkable escape and disappearance, one wonders whether Turkish intelligence and law enforcement agencies relaxed their vigilance — or worse — concerning Öksüz. Was he a plotter, a provocateur, or a plant?
Öksüz’s remarkably unwatched comings and goings is one reason to suspect that the Turkish government had a hand in the July 15 coup attempt, which otherwise would rank as the greatest intelligence/security failure in modern Turkish history. It is telling that neither security chief Hakan Fidan nor Chief of Staff General Hulusi Akar was disciplined for it, suggesting it may not have been a failure at all.
No, they remained at the top seats of Turkish institutions and protected by Erdogan.
By American Turkey Watcher