This is a blog dedicated to a personal interpretation of political news of the day. I attempt to be as knowledgeable as possible before commenting and committing my thoughts to a day's communication.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Goring The Turkish Ox

It appears as if Turkey's ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is using ISIS as a pretext to attack the PKK. Ankara just announced that its air base at Incirlik will soon be open to coalition forces, presumably to fight ISIS, but the moment Turkey started bombing, it targeted Kurdish positions. Those attacks not only open a new era of death and destruction, but also bring an end to all possibilities of resolving Turkey's Kurdish issue non-violently.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu announced that 'a second wave operation against Daesh [ISIS] in Syria was started. Just after that, a very comprehensive operation was carried out against the camps of the terrorist organization PKK in northern Iraq. I am glad that the targets were hit with great success. We have given instructions to start a third wave operation in Syria and a second wave operation in Iraq'."
Uzay Bulut, Turkish journalist, Ankara, Turkey

"This was not a point operation, this is a process. It is not limited to one day or to one region. ...The slightest movement threatening Turkey will be retaliated against in the strongest way possible."
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu

"This is a major policy shift. For Turkey to start taking these sorts of steps means they are going to be inviting a response from ISIS, which means they better be prepared to see it through the whole way." "It reflects the fact that the Americans are putting increasing importance on the Syrian angle of the anti-ISIS coalition strategy, where you can see much more productive gains from the military operation against ISIS than you can in Iraq. It also signifies that Turkey is finally acknowledging its own role in having a stake in the fight against the Islamic State."
Michael Stephens, director, Royal United Services Institute, Qatar 
Embedded image permalink

Turkey has turned in its Islamic State chips. Not to overlook that Turkey had a hand in welcoming ISIL to the neighbourhood to begin with. Turkey chose to support Islamic State, giving them haven in the country, allowing passage between Turkey and Syria to foreign jihadists intending to join ISIL in its caliphate's trajectory toward ultimate control of Iraq and Syria.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, though remaining supportive of Shiite Iran, is repelled by Syrian dictator President Bashar al-Assad's airstrikes on his Sunni Syrian population. A Shiite minority governing a Sunni majority doesn't quite seem right to Mr. Erdogan. His revulsion of President Assad's misrule in Syria had him urging NATO to intervene. Islamic State's rampant thrust into Syria to unseat Bashar al-Assad seemed fitting to Erdogan.

So Turkey also found it useful to act as middleman transferring oil extracted by Islamic State from the oilfields and refineries it had captured from Syria and Iraq, making a tidy profit for Turkey while enabling Islamic State to amass their billions on the black market for operational necessities. Now that the United States appears more interested in removing Assad from his tyrannical throne of death-dealing, Turkey finds itself more obliging to accede to requests that its airfields be open to the U.S.-led air coalition.

Moreover, Turkey has found it useful to begin engaging in the coalition-led ISIL bombings. A really neat cover for what truly concerns Turkey, the ambitions of the landless Kurds existing in Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Syria hoping to carve out a country of their own on territory they hope will be ceded to them by those nations. Over Recep Tayyip Erdogan's dead body, and he doesn't intend to play dead any time soon.

Feigning outrage over the ISIL suicide bombing that took place last week in Suruc at the Turkish border with Syria that killed 32 socialist Kurd humanitarians who meant to help the Syrian Kurds rebuild the ISIL-destroyed town of Kobani, Erdogan has turned his own airforce against the Kurdish military camps in his never-ending campaign to destroy the Kurds and their separatist-nationalist ambitions.

The scene of the suicide bombing in Suruc, Turkey. An ISIS suicide bomber murdered 32 people and wounded more than 100 others in a July 20 attack on Kurdish humanitarian activists. (Image source: VOA video screenshot)

While claiming that Turkey is determined to preempt all terror actions against the country by hitting at ISIL, the Turkish airforce was instructed to target Kurdish sites. President Erdogan confirmed he had ordered that the United States might use the Incirlik air base in southern Turkey for military operations against Islamic State "within a certain framework" which would of course be cooperation in striking the Syrian regime.
A US airforce plane takes off from Incirlik airbase in Turkey two years ago. Use of Incirlik in the fight against Islamic State would give coalition aircraft a huge advantage. Photograph: Vadim Ghirda/AP

"Why have the perpetrators [of the bombings in Suruç and Diyarbakır] not been detained? Why have there not been operations against ISIS sleeper cells in Turkey? How could [the government] be believable in its fight against ISIS when the pro-government media are still using the most abject hate speech against our party, while they cannot say a thing against Isis?"
The leftist and pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic party (HDP)
Turkish warplanes are striking bases near Amedi in Its
The three F16 jets that Turkey sent over the border with Syria struck a mere four kilometres inside Syria targeting vehicles used by ISIL and a group gathering point killing several of the fighters, nowhere near the number reported by Turkish media of 35. "[ISIL] is imposing a blackout on its losses, although there aren't large losses", said Rami Abdurrahman of the Syrian Obsercatory for Human Rights. Because its main focus is to strike the Kurds, the only effective fighting force against Islamic State.

The real target for the Turkish airforce and the police is the PKK Kurdish rebel group and the far-left DHKP. Erdogan wouldn't blink an eyelash if, in response to continued agitation by the Turkish Kurds in concert with their militant factions in Iraq and Syria, he succeeded in ordering airstrikes that would kill thousands. It would all have been done, as far as he is concerned, in a good cause; warning Kurdish civilians that a like fate is in store for them if they continue to be restively insistent on separation.

His raging hatred and violence against the Kurds, of course, are not to be compared to the vitriolic hostility of Syria's president against his own Sunni population, for Turkey is justified in its ongoing persecution of the troublesome Kurds whereas all the Sunni Syrians want is treatment equal to that enjoyed by Syrian Shiites. According to Erdogan's reckoning, Israel has embarked on a genocidal war against Palestinians in Gaza, but Turkey is entirely blameless in its treatment of Turkish Kurds.

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