US and Turkey: Anti-Syria Aggressors

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US and Turkey: Anti-Syria Aggressors

by Stephen Lendman ( – Home – Stephen Lendman)

Trump and Erdogan oppose peace in Syria. Both support war and regime change.

They’re enemies of Syrian sovereign independence, vying with each other for control over northern Syrian territory – flagrantly violating international law.

Neither leader can be trusted. Washington wants dominance over all other nations. Turkey under Erdogan want northern Iraqi and Syrian territory annexed, especially their oil-rich areas.

On Tuesday, Trump and Erdogan spoke by phone. Their administrations differ on what was discussed.

Erdogan reportedly told Trump to stop arming Syrian YPG Kurdish fighters and end support for the Kurdistan Workers Party, the Syrian Democratic Union Party, and YPG militants.

Trump reportedly told Erdogan to avoid military operations in areas where US forces are based.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said “(t)hose who support the (Kurdish) terrorist organization will become a target in this battle.”

“The United States needs to review its soldiers and elements giving support to terrorists on the ground in a way to avoid a confrontation with Turkey.”

Green lighting Turkish cross-border aggression in Kurdish northern Syrian territory appears a step toward Washington abandoning them, betraying an ally of convenience, jettisoning them when other priorities take precedence – reflecting longstanding US practice.

It has interests, not allies. It wants control over northern and southern Syrian territory, the country partitioned, Assad ousted, a US controlled puppet replacing him.

Kurds were recruited and armed for this purpose. Washington wants Turkish support for the same objective.

Pentagon spokesman Adrian Rankine-Galloway said if Kurdish fighters “carry out military operations of any kind that are not specifically focused on ISIS (Washington created and supports), they will not have coalition support,” adding:

“If we observe scenarios in which that equipment is used for other purposes, we are going to take appropriate action that could include cutting off military assistance to them.”

Erdogan spokesman Ibrahim Kalin slammed the Trump administration, saying:

“Earlier (it) promised that the PYD and YPG will abandon its positions in the Syrian Manbij. They gave many other promises, but did not fulfill any of them. We expect the United States to completely stop supporting the YPG and PYD,” adding:

“Two months have passed since then, but nothing has changed. Turkey’s expectations are simple and precise – the cessation of support to the YPG and PYD. When (it’s) done, we will offer to discuss the situation in Syria.”

Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Jonathan Cohen visited Ankara. He met with Turkish Deputy Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Ahmet Muhtar Gun.

It’s unclear what, if anything, was resolved on fighting in Syria. Begun on January 20, Turkish aggression is in its sixth day. Heavy fighting continues.

Following Trump’s Wednesday phone conversation with Erdogan, statements by both administrations disagreed on what was discussed.

An Erdogan source said “(t)he readout issued by the White House does not accurately reflect the content of President Erdogan’s phone call with President Trump,” adding:

“President Trump did not share any ‘concerns (about) escalating violence’ with regard to the ongoing military operation in Afrin. The two leaders’ discussion of ‘Operation Olive Branch’ was limited to an exchange of views.”

Trump wants Turkish aggression excluded from US occupied territory. Erdogan wants Kurdish fighters withdrawn from areas he intends occupying.

Neither leader observes rule of law principles. They’re waging naked aggression against a sovereign state threatening no one.

Endless war continues with virtually no prospects for resolution any time soon.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.