Thursday, January 18, 2018

Troubling news for the US strategy in Syria. Turkey asks Russia & Iran permission for airstrikes...

via Bloomberg.
Turkey drew closer to its threatened offensive against Kurdish separatist fighters in northwest Syria, sending top security chiefs to Russia to seek permission to use Syrian airspace for strikes.

Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu dismissed U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s attempts to allay Turkey’s fears about a border security force incorporating thousands of Kurdish fighters that the American-led coalition against Islamic State has said will be formed. The concept of such a force has outraged Turkey, which says the Kurdish fighters have designs on Turkish territory.

Turkey’s top general, Hulusi Akar, and intelligence agency chief Hakan Fidan flew to Moscow on Thursday to discuss regional security issues and developments and Syria with General Valery Gerasimov, head of Russia’s General Staff, the Turkish military said on its website. Turkey is holding talks with Russia and Iran -- whose militaries are supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in that country’s civil war -- about using Syrian airspace for the operation in the city of Afrin, Cavusoglu told CNN-Turk television in an interview on Thursday.

“We are under attack from Afrin every day, we have to make an intervention,” Cavusoglu told CNN-Turk. “The U.S. must stop cooperating with this terrorist organization,” he said of the Kurdish fighters. “We have to establish coordination for intervention from the air” so that military observers in the area are not harmed, he added, referring to those countries’ military advisers in Syria.
Story here. 

This isn't surprising, but its still jarring.

Don't get me wrong.  I still don't see the sense in US policy in the Middle East especially Syria but to see the world's super power relegated to the sidelines still takes getting used to.

But you know what's worse than being outmaneuvered by Russia, Iran and Turkey (probably have to include Iraq and Syria) is the fact that we're about to see the always reliable Kurds thrown under the bus.

Make no mistake about it. The Kurds are gonna get crushed.  They're just squabbling about who gets to do the deed.

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