By Zafer Fatih Beyaz
The terrorist group behind 2016’s defeated coup in Turkey is built on a hierarchical caste system consisting of 7 layers, according to an indictment in a major cases pertaining to defeated coup.
The indictment, which offers a structural analysis of the terrorist group, said Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) is comprised of a pyramidal structure and that Fethullah Gulen, the leader of the group, is inspired by the Ismaili sect of Zoroastrianism.
The bottom-up structure of the pyramid is as follows:
1st layer of common people: It contains people, who have a bond of affection with the Gulen community and provides financial assistance. Outside the hierarchical structure, they serve the organization with or without intention.
2nd layer of loyal people: It comprises of officials in schools, private teaching institutions, dormitories, banks, newspapers, foundations, and governmental institutions. People in this layer attend the organizational meetings, makes systematic payment and has a glimpse of ideology. They are required to have a membership of the organization.
3rd layer of ideological members: Members of this layer take part in unofficial activities. Adopting the organizational ideology, they are on mission to persuade other people to join the group.
4th layer of supervisors: They supervise all the activities -- legal or illegal. Those who stand out for their loyalty and obedience to the group could jump into this layer. Members of this layer are chosen from those who joined FETO as early as childhood.
5th layer of organizers and executers: It requires high-level secrecy. Members hardly know each other. Appointed by Gulen, they organize the structure in the government and execute tasks. People who marry to someone from the organization can qualify for this layer.
6th layer of special members: They build contacts between Gulen and people in the lower layers, and assign duties to the people within the organization.
7th layer of elites: Directly bound to Gulen, the layer comprises of 17 members, who are appointed by the terror group’s leader.
Apart from these layers, there is also a layer of sympathizers. They are not instructed by FETO, but at times they provide financial support and attend activities in support of the organization.
At the top of the pyramid is “Fetullah Hodja Throne”.
Those in 6th and 7th layers are strictly forbidden to leave the organization. The members from the 6th layer of the organization perform duties, which are dubbed as “vital services”.
People in the 5th layer hardly leave the organization. But, people in the layer, who quit the organization, are followed and neutralized by the group.
This organization model, which is based on a chain of cells, makes it harder for the state to decipher the clandestine group.
One cell is composed of mostly 5 people and an imam is in-charge of each cell. These cells form a chain, imams of which are responsible to coordinate with their seniors at home or abroad
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, which left 250 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.