man for the YPG Kurdish militia, Redur Xelil, called Turkey’s move “blatant aggression in Syrian internal affairs.” Aldar Xelil, another influential Kurdish politician, accused Turkey of initiating an occupation of Syria, saying the operation amounted to“a declaration of war” on the autonomous administration set up by Kurdish groups in northern Syria in 2011.
According to the Turkish government, Operation Euphrates Shield will “create a safe zone” that will be 90 kilometers long and 40 kilometers wide that stretches roughly from the town of Jarablus to the town of Marea.
That is a massive amount of territory, and this basically shows that the Turks plan to set up shop there permanently.
President Erdogan and his supporters have always dreamed of recreating the old Ottoman Empire, and they already have military forces occupying portions of northern Iraq. This move into northern Syria is yet another bold move in the direction of their ultimate goal.
But will the Russians just stand by and allow the Turks to do whatever they want?
So far the Russians are not saying much, but Vladimir Putin has ordered snap military drills…
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered snap military drills as German Chancellor Angela Merkel accused him of breaking international law in Ukraine and said NATO will defend member states against attack.
Combat readiness exercises are taking place “to defend the interests of the Russian Federation amid increasing threats to its security,” Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Thursday in a statement on the ministry’s website. Troops in Russia’s southern, central and western military districts, naval deployments in the Black Sea and Caspian Sea, and airborne forces are involved, he said.
The Russians don’t want to fight Turkish forces in Syria, but as they have shown in Crimea, in Ukraine and elsewhere, they are definitely not afraid to take military action when their interests require it.
And if Russia and Turkey do start fighting, that would threaten to drag the rest of NATO (including the United States) into the conflict.
Turkey has been chomping at the bit to start grabbing chunks of territory in northern Syria for quite some time now, but this invasion is going to turn out to be a tragic mistake.
President Erdogan has definitely overplayed his hand this time, and let us just hope that it doesn’t result in World War 3 erupting in the Middle East.