SADAT Defense Consultancy
Turkey's Syrian mercenaries form an integral part of the country's foreign policy ambitions. Syrian mercenaries have served Turkey's interests well as they offer a way to shore up its foreign policy objectives without mobilizing national assets such as the armed forces. "They are an effective means to an end in providing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan with a military force that could be discarded once its usefulness has been completed," said Noah Agily, a Washington-based independent researcher focusing on militia recruitment and formation in Libya. "In the future, these mercenaries will allow Turkey to continue positioning itself geo-strategically without incurring domestic blowback."
But Agily sees the use of mercenaries as part of a wider trend for countries such as Turkey and Russia to bolster their interests in the Middle East, North Africa and beyond. "Wars between states are becoming rarer, and instead, violent confrontations between non-state actors in spaces beyond state reach or in fragile governance areas will become more common.
Despite the myriad of purported motivators for Syrians to fight for Turkey, the manner of recruitment for some even bucked the trend toward opposition fighters and militants. At times, mercenaries are even recruited from refugee camps in Turkey. Recruitment takes place through an envoy of the office of the Turkish governor who goes to the Syrian refugee camp. These liaisons generally describe the job as guarding vital facilities, which leaves recruits surprised when they find themselves on the frontline.
Operations in Syria
SADAT was heavily involved in Turkey’s training of Syrian Sunni Arab rebels for the fight against Assad. The company established a number of facilities in the Marmara region for this purpose at the beginning of the Syrian war. According to a 2012 report in the oppositionist Aydinlik newspaper, at least one of these training facilities was located at a Turkish military base in the Golcuk district of Kocaeli, formerly maintained as a training center by the Turkish Navy.
The Syrian mercenaries recruited by Turkey appear to be a mix of former opposition fighters, militants and even refugees. In 2018, Turkish forces recruited Syrian opposition fighters operating under the banner of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and used them for military campaigns against Kurds in northern Syrian. Reports a the time suggested that some of those fighters had been involved in violent extremist groups. Meanwhile, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed that Turkish-backed Syrian mercenaries were former militants who fought for the likes of "Islamic State" and al-Qaida-affiliated militant groups.
Operations in Libya
Turkey used battle-hardened mercenaries from Syria to support the UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA). Estimates placed the deployment of Syrian mercenaries in Libya at more than 3,000 — and some as high as 6,000. The presence of Turkey-backed Syrian mercenaries in Libya had effectively tipped the balance for pro-GNA forces.
"Many of the mercenaries were highly experienced fighters of grueling urban combat fought in Aleppo, Hama, Idlib and, more recently, as paramilitary operatives against the Kurds in northern Syria," said Agily. "Using the Syrian mercenaries as ground operational forces and supporting them with drones operated by Turkish personnel allowed GNA's forces to stem the tide of the war and gradually contributed to the Libyan National Army's retreat to Sirte and Jufra in eastern Libya."
"The mercenaries are 'very likely' fighting in Libya for personal and financial reasons rather than ideological or political motivations," said a DOD OIG report, citing intelligence gathered by USAFRICOM, the US military's unified combatant command for Africa-based operations. Kristian Brakel, a former UN expert who now heads the Istanbul chapter of the German Heinrich Böll Foundation, which is affiliated with the Green party, supported the US findings, saying: "With a potential to gain up to $2,000 per month, it makes sense that many Syrians leave."
Operations in Azerbaijan
The reported operation in Azerbaijan shared hallmarks of the Libyan escapade. A frozen conflict deep in the Caucasus warmed up in September 2020 when Azerbaijan launched a military campaign to wrestle back Nagorno-Karabakh, a contested territory held for years by Armenian forces. The conflict pitted Armenia against Azerbaijan since the early 1990s, when the region was captured by local ethnic Armenians. However, the conflict has witnessed a new feature develop for the first time since it erupted nearly three decades ago.
Turkey — a country that has long held affinities for Azerbaijan and its predominantly Turkic population — reportedly deployed Syrian mercenaries to bolster Azerbaijani forces, according to Armenian authorities. "Turkish military experts are fighting side by side with Azerbaijan, who are using Turkish weapons, including UAVs and warplanes," said the Armenian Foreign Ministry. "According to credible sources, Turkey is recruiting and transporting foreign terrorist fighters to Azerbaijan."
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has researchers across Syria, said over 300 Syrian fighters have been deployed to Azerbaijan, Turkey’s longtime ally. “These Syrian fighters come from two ethnic Turkmen armed groups, including the Sultan Murad Division and the Suleyman Shah Brigade,” Rami Abdulrahman, director of the Syrian Observatory, told VOA in a phone interview 29 September 2020. The two Turkish-backed Syrian rebel groups had been important actors in Turkish-controlled areas of northern Syria.
SADAT Defense Consultancy
The SADAT Defense Consultancy, founded in 2012 by former Brig-Gen. Adnan Tanriverdi, is Ankara’s instrument in the area. Its activities are testimony to the changing nature of the Turkish state, and to the process by which power and influence are built and held in the Middle East. Tanriverdi left the army in 1997, after serving as the commander of the Turkish special forces, but was ousted as a result of Islamist activities.
SADAT, an Arabic word, is very interesting in Turkish, meaning 'Great', 'Master', 'Reis'. The organization is described as the first and only international company providing consultancy in the field of defense and military education in Turkey. It is quite interesting that the definition of SADAT is "a legal company established to fill the vacancy in the country and military territory of the Turkish Armed Forces".
In a manifesto on the company’s website, Tanriverdi wrote that, “SADAT aims at establishing the cooperation among Islamic countries in the sense of military and defence industries, in order to assist the Islamic World to take the rank it deserves among the Super Global Powers as a self-sufficient military power, by submitting them the services regarding the organization of Armed Forces, defence consultancy, military training and ordnance. We also aim to provide training on conventional warfare as well as special operations.”
Tanriverdi wrote that he decided " to take a closer look at "Private Defense Consultancy Companies" under the control of the Western Capitalism. Today, there are around 70 "international Defense Consultancy Companies" which are controlled by Western developed countries and which provide service in parallel to and under the control of the armed forces and foreign affairs departments of their countries. All of these companies were established after the World Wars I and II, and they operate in around 20 Muslim Countries. They carry out the most confidential military operations of countries in which they operate. Some of them instigated the civil war in their countries by means of imprudent leaders while some turned neighboring Muslim states into enemies, some were left behind to maintain control 1n lieu of the armed forces that retreated after the actual occupation and some others committed maJor crimes against humanity with their "'hired armies". As a result, this area was used as a means of exploitation by the West....
"Around 60 Muslim States, which are members of the United Nations, have been incapable of creating an alliance and gaining the power they deserve as they have not been able to save themselves from the control of the West and to bring their national governments into power despite their geography of high geostrategic importance, positioned at the heart of three continents across which global land. marine and air transportation is possible. as well as their rich underground and above-ground resources and supreme spiritual values they represent.... The welfare of Turk and Muslim Nations and restoration of peace and justice in the world hinges upon appearance of Islamic Countries as a super power on the global political scene. SADAT Inc. is a business corporation established and highlighting services to contribute to the emergence of the World of Islam as a Super power and to promote an environment of cooperation in field of Defense and Defense Industry among Islamic Countries."
Adnan Tanriverdi, born in 1944, entered the Military Academy in 1964. On August 30, 1980, the headquarters was raised to the Colonial on August 30, 1984 and to the Colonial on August 30, 1987. In 1990, the 8th Corps was assigned to the Artillery Regiment Command. While on this mission, he was Brigadier General on August 30, 1992. Tanriverdi also led the organizations that work on the frameworks of the integration of Islamic countries around a will and the creation of appropriate conditions for the foundation of the Islamic Union. Justice Advocates Association (ASDER) and Justice Advocates Association for Strategic Studies (ASSAM). Tanriverdi utilizes his private security company SADAT as a secret police force and death squad for the regime. SADAT Inc. is the first and only company in Turkey, providing consultancy services at the international defense sector and that provides military training. SADAT Inc. was founded under the presidency of retired General Adnan TANRIVERDI, by 23 officers and noncommissioned officers who are all retired from various troops of Turkish Armed forces, and it had initiated its activities after its Corporation Charter was published at the February 28th 2012 dated and 8015 numbered issue of the Turkish Trade Registry Journal.
Its announced founder, retired General Adnan Tanriverdi, reportedly met with Prime Minister Erdogan on February 20, 2011 to discuss the terms of his recruitment into the ranks of the AKP [Party for Justice and Development], then appointed to the Turkish Ministry of Homeland Security where his power and influence could enable him to become Minister of Defense.
SADAT announces on its website that it is qualified to train in regular, irregular warfare, as well as in military special operations. Their activities are illegal, their administrators would have affirmed that the Turkish government takes care of their archives in order to accord legal legitimacy to their exercises. These kinds of "foundations" are inspired by the American security company "Blackwater", which is a mercenary enterprise.
SADAT A.S. evaluates the military threats against the countries and both defines the possibilities of “defensive strategies and resources” of a country alone or same with its military alliances and organizes countries’ Armed Forces against the probable military threats. SADAT A.S. analyses “The Country’s Armed Forces’ Preparations for A War” by inspections and determines the best solutions for revisions. SADAT A.S. also supports The Armed Forces of The Countries with consultancy services at their Proactive Cyber Defense Measurements and Offensive Software Needs and Necessities.
SADAT 'serves' in both Military and Security. These services are divided into two parts: equipment and training! The applications of SADAT especially in the field of education attract attention. Among the services the company offers to the Security are intelligence, combating terrorism, explosives and bomb disposal, criminal, VIP protection. Somehow, SADAT can also raise police personnel by establishing police training centers at the same time.
Consultancy Services of SADAT A.S. are provided by Officers and NCOs who have successfully completed and been retired after serving as;
- War Academy and Armed Forces Academy
- Commander to a Brigade / Division / Corps or higher units in Land Forces (or equivalent positions in Navy /Air Forces / General Command of Gendarme)
- Staff in Army / Navy / Airf Forces Headquarters or Staff in The Headquarter of The Presidency of General Staff of Turkish Armed Forces
- Military Attache, Staff in NATO Headquarters
- Commander or High Ranking Staff to any troops against terrorism in high risk areas for interior security missions
- Staff to Military Training or Educational Centers
- completed their services from the smallest unit through highest, matching their ranks and branch qualifications in order.
For the purpose of reorganizing the security forces of demanding countries in a modern sense in accordance with their cultural, traditional aspects and customs ; Staff Consultancy Team of Sadat Inc., which is composed of Retired 1st Class Police Officers and Retired Gendarme Officers, is able to make analysis on current conditions, establishments, equipments, records, personnel and already-though situations.
SADAT A.S. provides conventional warfare trainings and end-user trainings for militaries and their trainers and others from individual through highest units of Land Forces, Navys and airforces of Countries. SADAT A.S. provides trainings of ambush, raid, road cutting / closing, destruction, sabotage and Rescue / Abduction Operations and “Counter Tactics and Techniques” to above for Unconventional Warfare Organizations and related components for the Need of National Defense Preparations of Countries.
SADAT A.S. has Special Training Programs which include special trainings for the personnel for special operations in conventional and unconventional wars to gain special qualifications and skills for The Field of “Land, Sea or Air” Operations. In addition to their succesfully regular services in Army, Navy and Air Forces of Turkish Armed Forces with extreme skills gained after the completion of Battle Drill Trainings, Commando Course, Airborne/Parachutte Courses, Unconventional Warfare Course, Scuba Diving / Frogman Courses and Demolition courses for Land and Underwater missions, the trainers of SADAT A.S. have extreme experiences from their long time services.
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