Connect with us

Foreign Affairs

It’s time to stop pretending Turkey is an ally

Published

on

Its time to stop pretending Turkey is an ally

Recep Tayyip Erdogan hates America. His government hates America. His willingness to occasionally play nice, whether with President Obama or President Trump, always comes with a heavy price. We may be on the verge of witnessing the heaviest price paid yet in the form of reinvigorated war in Syria and tens of thousands killed. If that happens, President Trump will have made a tremendous mistake by pandering to the Turkish dictator’s demands.

But there’s still hope for a bloodbath to be averted. The unintended benefit of the administration pulling back American troops from the border areas coveted by Turkey and currently held by our (former) allies, the Kurdish-back Syrian Democratic Forces, is that the international community is stepping up. Many countries have called for Erdogan to stand down from his intended invasion into northern and eastern Syria, including Iran. Their support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad means they’d love for Syrian Kurds to side with the government and bolster their army. Then, of course, there’s the economic threat President Trump made to Erdogan.

The decision by President Trump to pull back American forces has been controversial to say the least. Many Republican lawmakers have denounced the move. On social media, even MAGA-hat wearing conservatives are scratching their heads about why the President would pick this moment to fulfill his campaign promise of pulling American troops from the “quagmires” in the Middle East. Afghanistan seems to be the bigger quagmire; our troops in Syria were fairly safe standing side-by-side with Kurdish militia allies, even if their primary role was as human shields to prevent Turkey from attacking.

I’ll admit I’ve been searching for the silver lining in this whole mess. It’s great that our troops are being pulled out of harm’s way, but if the presence of a few dozen troops in strategic areas away from fighting is all it takes to prevent a large-scale war from breaking out in the region, then one does not have to be a hawkish neoconservative to see the benefits of maintaining our presence there. An “America first” stance is positive, as is the desire to leave the quagmires, but the small price being paid by having a small number of troops present in a relatively safe area helping others fight the Islamic State seems to make sense.

The actual silver lining, if I’m forced to come up with one, is that if and when Turkey does turn their threats against the Kurds into a reality, we may finally have grounds to stop pretending like Turkey is an ally. Their presence in NATO means we must defend them. The fact they have two extremely important U.S. bases on their soil must also be considered. But if Erdogan does as most expect him to do, then it’s imperative that President Trump stops treating them like one of our buddies in the region.

Admittedly, I’ve long considered the Turkish government to be a central point of evil in the world. It’s not just Erdogan’s dictatorial stances and oppressive policies. He has indicated he wants to lead the caliphate to expand Sunni Islam’s dominance in the region, and while he hasn’t outwardly expressed a desire to spread it beyond the region, it’s a safe assumption his goal of rebuilding the Ottoman Empire includes expansion of his powers.

Wiping out the Kurds, if it happens (God forbid) must be the last straw that finally prompts aggressive economic and political action against Turkey. If we have to shut down our bases there, so be it. The fewer connections we have with Turkey, the better. We have Israel and Saudi Arabia as much better allies than Turkey (though it isn’t wise to get me started ranting about our alliance with Saudi Arabia, either) in the region. Unless the unimaginable happens and Erdogan’s incursion into Syria is truly limited, we must prepare to break from them and treat them the way they truly feel about us: as adversaries.

Results from the President’s previous moves have come back to surprise me. I’m hoping this is another one of those cases. I’m hoping this works out for both our Kurdish allies and President Trump. With no other option, hope is all I have left on this issue.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

American Conservative Movement

0

Foreign Affairs

‘Lady Liberty’ erected above Hong Kong

Published

on

Lady Liberty erected above Hong Kong

Several dozen Hong Kong protesters scaled a peak overlooking the city to erect a 3-meter statue they’re saying is their version of “Lady Liberty.” According to Singapore-based news outlet The Straits Times, it overlooks the city to inspire protesters against the increasingly authoritarian government in the city, which is backed by Beijing.

Clashes between protesters and police grew more aggressive over the weekend as the semi-autonomous island off the China coast continues to experience strife between the people and the government. Nearly 2500 protesters have been arrested so far with around 1000 of them being under the age of 18.

This is the latest symbolic call in a long string that is intended to mimic and draw attention from Americans who have the types of freedoms they crave. But so far there has been no significant movement by the government as Beijing grows impatient.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

American Conservative Movement

Continue Reading

Foreign Affairs

Russia brokers deal for Kurdish forces, Syria to partner against Turkey

Published

on

Russia brokers deal for Kurdish forces Syria to partner against Turkey

Syria as a whole will be Bashar Al-Assad’s once again. That is, at least, what the Syrian President and the Russians are hoping for after Moscow brokered a deal between Assad’s regime and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces in eastern Syria.

In the wake of a U.S. withdrawal from the border with Turkey and the subsequent invasion by Turkey 20 miles into Syrian territory, Assad and his long-time rivals are willing to work together against their mutual enemy. It isn’t just Turkey but also their proxies in the Free Syrian Army. The group, which was once supported by the Obama administration to fight Assad’s government, has been the tip of Turkey’s spear so far during the brief conflict with the SDF.

Russia, who has had an ongoing relationship with Assad and once supported the SDF, has renewed those ties and brought the two foes together to fight for a common cause. If it works, the Kurds will likely maintain some autonomy while adhering to a united Syria under Assad. If it fails, Turkey will take control of a stretch of land 20 miles deep and 300 miles wide along the border where they intend to relocate two million refugees.

This isn’t just about relocation, though. The Turkish government believes the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which comprises the most powerful militia group within the SDF, is supplying their allies in the Kurdisran Workers’ Party (PKK), which Turkey and America regard as a terrorist organization.

With Russia inserting itself into the mix, their relationship with Turkey will likely strain even more. But their greater goal of a united Syria under the control of Bashar Al-Assad is worth making Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan upset.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

American Conservative Movement

Continue Reading

Economy

President Trump working with Congress to sanction Turkey

Published

on

President Trump working with Congress to sanction Turkey

In less than a week, Turkey has managed to draw the ire of most of the world, including most on Capitol Hill, as they move to eradicate Kurds and Christians in eastern Syria. Their invasion, coordinated with attacks by their Syrian al Qaeda proxies, have already caused turmoil, killed hundreds, and displaced hundreds of thousands.

Now, President Trump appears ready to follow through on his threat to “cripple Turkey’s economy” through sanctions.

The President has been criticized by many in both political parties following the White House announcement that we are withdrawing troops from the border region. What followed was such a quick response in the form of an all out Turkish invasion that it’s clear they’ve been planning this for some time.

Our EIC took to Twitter to push the President towards following through with his threat against Turkey should they cross the line. As he noted, they have clearly crossed the line.

Reports of civilian deaths are mounting. It isn’t just the Kurds that Turkey and al Qaeda are targeting. Syriac Christians are in the crosshairs as well. The intense fighting seems to be focused on clearing out entire cities to make room for the millions of refugees the Turks currently hold. Instead of just taking out military targets from the Kurds, who Turkey believes to be terrorists, the invaders are wiping out the entire populations in cities and villages near the border.

Senator Lindsey Graham chimed in. Graham has been a Trump supporter, but broke from the White House over the Syrian withdrawal. Now, he’s voicing hope and alignment with the President’s sanction plans.

Turkish President Erdogan clearly lied to President Trump. It’s time to send them a clear message in response. Our troops may be coming home, but we can stop this bloodbath through sanctions. Cripple their economy, Mr. President.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

American Conservative Movement

Continue Reading

Facebook

Trending