Tactical Mobilisation Group

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Special Warfare Department
Active 1952–1965
Country  Turkey
Branch Turkish Army
Type Special Operations

The Tactical Mobilisation Group (TMG, Turkish: Seferberlik Taktik Kurulu) was the special operations unit of the Turkish Army. It was founded in 1952 as part of NATO's efforts to establish a Counter-Guerrilla force in Turkey as the Turkish branch of Operation Gladio.[1] It was disbanded in 1965, with special operations taken over by the new Special Warfare Department (Turkish: Özel Harp Dairesi).

In the 2000s it was revealed that the 1955 Istanbul riots were engineered by the TMG.[2][3] Four star general Sabri Yirmibeşoğlu, the right-hand man of General Kemal Yamak[4] who led the Turkish outpost of Operation Gladio under the Tactical Mobilization Group, proudly reminisced about his involvement in the riots, calling the TMG "a magnificent organization".[5][6][7]


With the consent of the National Defense Supreme Council (Turkish: Milli Savunma Yüksek Kurulu), brigadier general Daniş Karabelen founded the Tactical Mobilization Group (Turkish: Seferberlik Taktik Kurulu, or STK) on 27 September 1952.[8][9] Karabelen was one of sixteen soldiers (including Turgut Sunalp, Ahmet Yıldız, Alparslan Türkeş, Suphi Karaman, and Fikret Ateşdağlı) who had been sent to the United States in 1948 for training in special warfare. These people were to form the core of what would later be called the Special Warfare Department (Turkish: Özel Harp Dairesi, or ÖHD).[10] It has been said that the training also entailed an element of CIA recruitment.[11]

Some full generals that later ran the department were Adnan Doğu, Aydın İlter, Sabri Yirmibeşoğlu, İbrahim Türkgenci, Doğan Bayazıt, and Fevzi Türkeri.[10] Karabelen picked Ismail Tansu as his right-hand man, and they expanded the STK in a cellular fashion. They filled the ranks, mostly with reserve officers, inducted them with an oath, and educated them before allowing them to return to civilian life. The officers were given no weapons, funding, or immediate task.[10] The recruitment was more concentrated in the east, where an invasion was most likely to occur.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Turkey's Killing Machine: The Contra-Guerrilla Force, Serdar Celik, in Kurdistan Report. No.17. February/March 1994
  2. ^ Birand, Mehmet Ali. “The shame of Sept. 6–7 is always with us Archived 2012-12-09 at Archive.is,” Turkish Daily News, 7 September 2005.
  3. ^ Ergil, Doğu. “Past as present Archived 2012-12-09 at Archive.is,” Turkish Daily News 12 September 2005.
  4. ^ Dündar, Can (2007-04-01). "Özel Harp'çinin tırmanış öyküsü". Milliyet (in Turkish). Retrieved 2008-09-21.
  5. ^ Hür, Ayşe (2008-09-07). "6-7 Eylül'de devletin 'muhteşem örgütlenmesi'". Taraf (in Turkish). Archived from the original on 2008-09-19. Retrieved 2008-09-21.
  6. ^ Ergil, Doğu (2008-09-17). "The dark side of nationalism: Sept. 6-7 incident". Today's Zaman. Archived from the original on November 23, 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-21.
  7. ^ Cemal A. Kalyoncu, Aksiyon, 31 March 2001, Sivil general
  8. ^ ""Kontrgerilla", "Gladio", "Derin Devlet" gibi kavramlar hakkında" (Press release) (in Turkish). Turkish Armed Forces. 2006-01-16. BA-01/06. Archived from the original on 2008-03-08.
  9. ^ "'Gladyo'dan Ergenekon'a yolculuk". Radikal (in Turkish). 2008-08-12. Retrieved 2008-09-22. |section= ignored (help)
  10. ^ a b c Mercan, Faruk (2006-01-09). "İlk Özel Harpçi Orgeneral". Aksiyon (in Turkish). Feza Gazetecilik A.Ş. 579. Archived from the original on June 8, 2007. Retrieved 2008-10-15.
  11. ^ "The name of the war against the people: the contra-guerrilla". Ozgur Politika. 1997-02-11. Archived from the original on 1998-02-14. They are trained by the USA, but not because the USA wants to be of help. In the training camps and schools, the CIA contacts them and tries to enlist them as CIA agents.
  12. ^ Yilmaz, Turan (2008-11-10). "Özel Harpçi Kürt Laz, Çerkez vardı". Hürriyet (in Turkish). Retrieved 2008-11-10. Türkiye açısından işgale en açık bölgeler Doğu ve Güneydoğu olduğu için en çok da oralardan insanlar var.