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Turkey’s shelling, bombing and invasion of northern Syria has nothing to do with protecting its borders and national security.
Its aggression has everything to do with wanting territorial expansion, along with longstanding hostility toward the Kurds, including its own citizens, an estimated 14 million people, residing mainly in southeastern and eastern Anatolia.
On Sunday, US Defense Secretary James Mattis defended Turkish aggression in Syria, saying
“Turkey is a NATO ally.”
“It’s the only NATO country with an active insurgency inside its borders. And Turkey has legitimate security concerns,” adding:
“Turkish was candid. (It’s) easy to understand” why it’s concerned about conflict in Syria spilling cross-border into its territory.
“They warned us before they launched the aircraft that they were going to do it. We are very alert to it. Our top levels are engaged and we’re working through it.”
Fact: Turkey threatens Syrian territory, not the other way around.
Fact: Throughout seven years of US aggression on Syria, Erdogan supported ISIS and other terrorist groups in the country, allied with Washington’s playbook, wanting Assad toppled and northern Syrian territory annexed.
- No active insurgency exists in Turkey, a nation at war with its own Kurdish people, along with anyone challenging Erdogan’s despotic rule.
- Throughout the war in Syria, no spillover into Turkish territory occurred. No threat of it exists.
- Turkey is a NATO country with the second largest military force in the alliance after America’s.
- The Trump administration wants Erdogan allied with its imperial agenda against Russia. He’s an opportunist, playing the US and Russian cards at the same time, currently leaning more toward Moscow than Washington, why Mattis and other administration officials are concerned.
Russia is going along with Turkish aggression in northern Syria. Instead of condemning it, its Foreign Ministry urged restraint, an unacceptable response, Ankara taking full advantage.
NATO’s website has nothing about Turkey’s ongoing aggression, supporting it through silence.
Syria is the only nation strongly denouncing Ankara’s invasion and terror-bombing of its territory. It’s operation is expanding. Ankara announced a large-scale Menbeij offensive in the Aleppo governorate.
Heavily armed US-backed Kurdish YPG fighters control the area able to hit back hard against Turkish aggression. US forces are deployed nearby.
Fighting in the area hasn’t begun. Whatever its plans, Turkey’s military won’t attack areas near US positions.
The announced Menbeij offensive may be more bluster than reality. Washington’s acquiescence with Turkish aggression suggests a deal struck between both sides.
The same goes for Russia, failing to condemn what’s ongoing. Military chiefs from both countries met in Moscow before Turkish aggression began.
Without at least tacit approval from Moscow and Washington, Erdogan most likely wouldn’t have launched his latest aggression in northern Syria.
Ankara’s Prime Ministry office of Public Diplomacy issued a statement, saying its military aims to take control of a 10,000 square km area in northern Syria, including Afrin.
Claiming it’s to secure its borders from a terrorist threat is utter rubbish. Erdogan supports terrorists in Syria.
He wants northern Syrian territory annexed, seizing and maintaining control over as much as possible.
He’s pursuing his objective with virtually no opposition from Washington and Moscow – other than meaningless tepid rhetoric.
He heads Turkey’s Justice and Development Party. His main opposition Republican People’s Party, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), and recently formed IYI (Good) Party all lent support to his northern Syria aggression.
He’s free to do what he pleases, flagrantly violating international law, the world community largely turning a blind eye to what demands condemnation.
Stephen Lendman is a Research Associate of the CRG, Correspondent of Global Research based in Chicago.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”