A former member of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) has revealed that the organization’s plot to infiltrate the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) started back in the 1980s. The member, identified as N.O., was a handler for the group's military infiltrators and was captured in counterterrorism operations after FETÖ’s 2016 coup attempt. He invoked a remorse law that offers lenient sentences to those who collaborate with authorities.
N.O. was in charge of infiltrators in the TSK's Second Army Command. He joined FETÖ in 1983 while he was a high school student and met Fetullah Gülen, FETÖ’s fugitive leader, at a school affiliated with the group in the Western city of İzmir. It was Gülen who gave him the nickname “Usame.” He took the position of a handler, known internally as “imam,” for the group in 1990 and was initially in charge of cadets loyal to the group at a military high school in Istanbul. He recounted meetings with cadets in “safe houses” and his trips to the capital Ankara in later years to meet cadets attending a military academy there. “Everything we did was shrouded in secrecy. We used to tell cadets not to disclose any ties [with FETÖ],” he told investigators.
He also spoke about how FETÖ arranged his marriage. “I was married to a woman picked by [FETÖ]. If you marry someone they do not approve of, you are cut off from all the secret work the group does,” he said.
N.O. also explained that he used to meet other handlers and they would collect information about the army and the lives of military officers not linked to the group and share the information with a secret program installed on flash drives. “There was a group member in charge of collecting data and each handler would give him the data they collected about officers, whether they are warm to [FETÖ] or can be an obstacle for further military infiltration,” he said.