The Curly Shuffle in Syria

The more I see this present administration, the more I think it resembles a three Stooges episode. Before Israel puts all of its eggs in the US basket, let’s observe what happens to a US “ally” that bleeds and gives all for the American Empire (yes, I use that term justifiably) and then is abandoned. We then will see who the “special relationships” really are with and who is just an affair.

This is especially tragic for the Kurds. They are the largest ethnic group in the Middle East without a homeland. We should be very sensitive to them, given our long fight for a homeland. They have done the same.

Who is the real “special relationship with in this situation? That would be Turkey and NATO of course. Erdogan invoked the NATO charter like the US did in 2001 and said he had “terrorists” on his doorstep. Would the US ever throw Israel under the bus like they have the Kurds? It only took nine days for them to backtrack on promises to the Kurds and allow the Turks to have their way. There but for the grace of God go us.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has been doing the Curly Shuffle as Washington desperately hopes to avoid being shut out of Afrin, Syria by its own allies, the Turks. In classic Stooge format, this follows a crisis the US helped to provoke just days earlier. Erdogan simply asked the US how long they would remain in Iraq and Afghanistan. Then he pledged not only to not stop its Afrin campaign: Additionally, the Turkish Army will take the offensive to Azaz district.

Hey Moe! Watch me do the shuffle for nine days!

January 13

The US announces the new 30,000-strong Kurdish YPG-led Border Security Force (BSF). The stated need is to battle off an ISIS “resurgence” out of the quarter of Syria’s territory that the Kurds now control.

January 15

Turkish President Erdogan called BSF an “army of terror” and promised to “strangle it before it is born.” He said that the Turkish Army would invade the north-western enclave of Afrin. Erdogan says the US did not consult it, and broke its promise to no longer arm YPG. Turkey views the YPG as terrorists.

January 17

Tillerson said: “That entire situation has been mis-portrayed, mis-described, some people misspoke. We are not creating a Border Security Force at all.”

Pentagon spokesman Adrian Rankine-Galloway said about the 8,000-10,000 YPG militiamen in Afrin: “We are not part of the “Defeat ISIS’ operations, which is what we are doing there and we do not support them. We are not involved with them at all.” I can see the bus start to roll.

January 20

Turkey attacked Afrin and declared a 30-km deep “security zone” inside the Syria, and announced an offensive further to the East. The bus hits.

January 21

“Turkey is a NATO ally. It’s the only NATO country with an active insurgency inside its borders. And Turkey has legitimate security concerns,” said US Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis. “We’ll sort this out.” Soytanly! I resemble that remember that remark!

January 22

Tillerson said to Erdogan: “Let us see if we can work with you to create the kind of security zone you might need.” Come again? Buy a toupee with brains in it!

The entire screw-up is emblematic of the bumbling policy (if you can generously call it that) that the US has pursued in Syria for the past seven years. What did you Stooges think was going to happen after the BSF announcement?

In the case of Israel, it points to a disturbing question: Will Washington throw us under the bus like the Kurds? Thanks useful idiots, but the Turks have been our friends since 1949, and with friends like that, the US doesn’t need enemies. The Kurds were just another affair in the beds of the Middle East.

My grandpa in Missouri once had a saying about riding a swayback horse to the glue factory. Ride it at a trot, because you never know when it’s going to die on you. Is this the way Washington see’s us? But Mr. Trump, my name isn’t Elmer!

About the Author
Akiva ben Avraham is a former community college adjunct, US Army intelligence analyst and officer, and a caregiver.
Related Topics
Related Posts