Turkey Hires Ex-CIA Director to Lobby US Congress


Porter Goss

Porter Goss

ANKARA (Telegraph UK) — Turkey has appointed former CIA director Porter Goss to lobby the US Congress on its behalf, amid tensions between Ankara and Washington over international intervention in Syria and support for the Kurds.

Goss, 76, who resigned from the CIA in 2006, will be employed “indefinitely,” according to a form filed with the Department of Justice on April 23.

As well as focusing on energy security and trade issues, the former intelligence chief will amplify Turkey’s stance over the Syria crisis, the Kurdish issue, and Washington’s rapprochement with Tehran.

His appointment comes during a fractious period in Turkey’s relationship with the US.

The two capitals take divergent views over the best way to end Syria’s seemingly intractable civil war, and Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan has recently called on the US to deport Turkish preacher Fethullah Gulen, whom he accuses of attempting to bring down his government.

The Turkish government has enlisted Goss’s services through Washington-based lobbying firm Dickstein Shapiro, which employs a host of high-level former officials.

Dickstein Shapiro is subcontracted by the influential Washington-based PR firm Gephardt Group. Providing its services to Turkey for an annual sum of $1.4 million (£892,000), the Gephardt Group has lobbied against congressional resolutions labeling the massacre of Armenians by Ottoman forces during World War One as a genocide.

Turkey is one of the most prolific sources for foreign lobbying contracts and the third largest sponsor of congressional vacation junkets.