Erdogan wants to use the referendum to consolidate his power, establish one-man rule and terminate representative government in Turkey. He is a committed Islamist who wants to repeal democracy and create a Islamic regime that extends beyond Turkey’s present borders into Iraq and Syria. This is why he has been such an enthusiastic supporter of the jihadi groups fighting in Syria.
By Mike Whitney
The plan to annex sovereign Syrian territory and use it to launch attacks on the government of Syrian President Bashar al Assad dates back to 2012. In 2015, however, the strategy was expanded upon by Brookings analyst Michael E. O’Hanlon in a piece titled “Deconstructing Syria: A new strategy for America’s most hopeless war”. Here’s an excerpt:
“…the only realistic path forward may be a plan that in effect deconstructs Syria….the international community should work to create pockets with more viable security and governance within Syria over time… The idea would be to help moderate elements establish reliable safe zones within Syria once they were able. American, as well as Saudi and Turkish and British and Jordanian and other Arab forces would act in support, not only from the air but eventually on the ground via special forces. … Western forces themselves would remain in more secure positions in general—within the safe zones but back from the front lines—at least until the reliability of such defenses, and also local allied forces, made it practical to deploy and live in more forward locations.
Creation of these sanctuaries would produce autonomous zones that would never again have to face the prospect of rule by either Assad ….The interim goal might be a confederal Syria, with several highly autonomous zones… The confederation would likely require support from an international peacekeeping force….to make these zones defensible and governable,….and to train and equip more recruits so that the zones could be stabilized and then gradually expanded.”
This is the Obama administration’s basic blueprint for toppling Assad and reducing Syria into an ungovernable failed state run by regional warlords, renegade militias and Islamic extremists. US Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed our worst suspicions about this sinister plan in a speech he delivered to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace just last week. Here’s part of what he said:
“In northern Syria, the coalition and its partners have pushed Daesh (ISIS) out of more than 17,000 square kilometers of territory, and we have secured the Turkish-Syrian border east of the Euphrates River. That’s about 85 percent of the Turkish border, and the President is authorizing further activities to secure the rest…….
We’re also enhancing our air campaign in order to help drive Daesh, which once dominated the Syria-Turkey border, out of the last 70-mile stretch that it controls.”
Repeat: “That’s about 85 percent of the Turkish border, and the President is authorizing further activities to secure the rest.”
Why has Obama “authorized further activities to secure the rest”?
Because no one in Washington believes that the US-backed jihadis will beat the combined forces of the Russian-led coalition which is gradually annihilating the terrorist militias across Syria. So now, Obama is moving on to Plan B, the creation of a terrorist sanctuary on the Syrian side of the Syrian-Turkish border where the US and its partners can continue to arm, train and deploy their jihadi maniacs back into Syria whenever they choose to do so. Undoubtedly, Obama’s Special Forces will be used to oversee this operation and to make sure that everything goes according to plan.
There is, of course, a question about the Kurdish militias role in this strategy. Recently, the US has air-dropped pallet-loads of weapons and ammo to the Democratic Union Party (PYD) hoping the group could help the US secure the last stretch of land along the border west of the Euphrates thus keeping vital supplylines open for the jihadis while establishing a safe haven on Syrian territory. Erdogan violently opposes any operation that will create a contiguous Kurdish state on the Syrian side of the border.
So how will this situation be resolved? Will Obama stick with the Kurds or realign with Erdogan in exchange for Turkish boots on the ground?
No one knows just yet, but certainly a Turkish-US alliance would be more formidable than a PYD-US coalition. Judging by Washington’s long history of choosing the most expedient solution to achieve its policy goals, we expect Obama to align himself with Ankara.
These developments suggest that Putin will have to move fast if he wants to seal the border and derail Erdogan’s plan. The Russian president might have to deploy Russian Special Forces and armored divisions northward to discourage US-Turkey adventurism and to prevent the war from turning into a quagmire.
This is one situation where preemption could really pay off bigtime.
Read the full article at CounterPunch
Related: Towards a Reversal of the Situation in the Near East
I like Mike Whitney. His analyses are usually spot on.
Sure they are 🙂