Obama Ally Erdogan Defends Al-Qaeda Financier Sued by the Families of the Victims of 9/11
January 20, 2014 • 5:06PM

Obama's ally in the war to overthrow Qaddafi and in the current effort to overthrow the Assad government of Syria, Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is a close friend and defender of Yasin Abdullah al-Qadi, a Saudi businessman, born in Egypt, whose assets were ordered frozen following 9/11 on October 12, 2001 by the U.S. Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as a suspected funder of al-Qaeda.

Although al-Qadi has succeeded in getting himself removed from his listing as a terrorist in several European nations, he remains a "Specially Designated Global Terrorist" under U.S. law. On March 19, 2012, Judge John D. Bates in the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia dismissed al-Qadi's 2009 lawsuit to have himself delisted.

Al-Qadi is also a named defendant in the suit brought by the families of the victims of 9/11. Although that suit was dismissed in 2010, in 2013 it was reinstated on appeal and al-Qadi was specifically named as a defendant who was allegedly "one of al-Qaeda's chief global financiers." Al-Qadi, as alleged in the 9/11 suit, co-founded the Muwafaq Foundaiton for the purpose of "serving as a vehicle for funding and otherwise supporting terrorist organizations, including al-Qaeda." The co-founder was Khaled bin Mahfouz, who was the President and CEO of National Commercial Bank, which ran an aviation division that operated in the United States. The plaintiffs allege that al-Qadi "ran the Muwafaq Foundation from 1992 until approximately 1997 with $15 to $20 million of his own money."

Erdogan, who has worked with Obama, in alliance with the al-Qaeda affiliated Libyan Islamic Fighting Group in Libya and with al-Qaeda in Syria, has moved in recent weeks to try to suppress a judicial investigation in Turkey itself centering on his ties to al-Qaeda and his involvement in shipping weapons to the opposition in Syria controlled by al-Qaeda.

In connection with this investigation an arrest warrant was issued against Yasin al-Qadi by the Turkish courts.

Erdogan's relationship with al al-Qadi and al-Qadi's role in funding al-Qaeda terror has long been known.

On April 2, 2004 in an article entitled "Terror Probe Follows the Money," the Wall Street Journal reported that in 1998 al-Qadi transferred $1.25 million from his Geneva bank account through an associate to an alleged al-Qaeda front company in Turkey, known as Maram. This money went to an Islamic school in Yemen. Maram was founded in December 1996 as an Istanbul travel agency by Mamduh Salim who as of 2004 was in U.S. custody and under indictment by the DOJ as the former chief financial officer of al-Qaeda. Salim is accused of helping direct the bombings of the U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.

The school in Yemen was founded by Sheikh Abdul Mejid al-Zindani, the head of the Yemen Muslim Brotherhood, who fought alongside Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan.

On Dec. 19, 2002, ABC News reported that two veteran FBI investigators were told by their superiors to call off an investigation of al-Qadi, which they were conducting in Chicago. They had found that some of the money for the attack on the U.S. embassies in Africa came from Yasin al-Qadi and that he was one of 12 Saudi businessmen suspected of funneling millions of dollars to al-Qaeda. All had extensive business and financial ties in Chicago where al-Qadi lived from 1979-1981, a period which coincided with a visit made by Osama bin Laden himself to Chicago in 1979.

On January 24, 2008 Forbes magazine reported on Erdogan's close relationship to al-Qadi. "I know Mr. al-Qadi," Erdogan told a local television news station in July 2006. "I believe in him as I believe in myself." Forbes went on to report that al-Qadi is not just a friend of Erdogan, but is close to a group of Islamic businessmen and politicians around Erdogan.

Another article in the Wall Street Journal in August 2006 reports that al-Qadi was a major and early investor in BIM, a food retailer founded by Aziz and Cuneyd Zapsu. H. Cuneyd Zapsu is Erdogan's close personal aide, commonly referred to as the "shadow foreign minister" or "Erdogan's right hand."

Al-Qadi also helped fund Ptech, a Boston software firm in 1994. PTech was paid by the Federal Aviation Administration to find weaknesses in the FAA's response plans for terrorist events over U.S. airspace. The Ptech team was given access to every process and system in the FAA dealing with crisis response protocols. This work was overseen by Hussein Ibrahim, Ptech's vice president and chief scientist. Ibrahim was an executive of BMI, Inc. and served as vice president and then president of BMI Inc. from 1989 to 1995. BMI Inc. was a Sharia-compliant investment bank based in New Jersey, which al-Qadi helped fund around 1986. Ptech's software was running on the critical systems responding to 9/11 on September 11, 2001.

The Dec. 26, 2013 issue of a Turkish English-language publication, Today's Zaman runs an article entitled "Yasin al-Qadi and the Erdogan Family." The article reports that "Last June Mr. al-Qadi and his close associate Qutb were involved in a traffic accident in Istanbul and taken to a hospital. When they had the traffic accident, the prime minister's chief of security was with them in the same car. More importantly, the prime minister's son, Bilal Erdogan, was the first person to visit them in the hospital and cleaned the hospital records of the fact that they had had an accident while the prime minister's chief of security was with them.

"Even the pro-government Star daily confirmed an allegation that al-Qadi had met with the MIT [Turkish Intelligence] chief. After the meeting, they returned to Istanbul and were involved in the traffic accident while Prime Minister Erdogan's chief of security, Ibrahim Yildiz, was with them in the car."

Here we have a Saudi financier of al-Qaeda meeting with the head of Turkish Intelligence (MIT) accompanied by Prime Minister Erdogan's chief of security. Members of the MIT have been caught transporting weapons to al-Qaeda in Syria.

Where is the outcry from the Congress? Where is the outcry from NATO, of which Turkey is a member? Does anyone think that Obama does not know what his good friend and partner in crime, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan has done and is doing? Could this be among the reasons why Obama, like Bush before him, has refused to declassify the 28-page chapter of the Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 which deals with Saudi Arabia?