Double standards for Recep Tayyip Erdoğan


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has repeatedly ignored the independent status of the neighboring country, and is now poised to occupy part of Syria’s northern provinces, supposedly in a bid to establish a “Security Zone”.

While the whole world was distracted by the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and wondered whether China would follow Moscow’s example and try to “reintegrate” Taiwan, Ankara, a member of the North Atlantic Alliance, violated Syria’s sovereignty again.

Turkish President Erdoğan has repeatedly ignored the independent status of the neighboring country, and is now poised to occupy part of Syria’s northern provinces, supposedly in a bid to establish a “Security Zone”.

However, despite Ankara’s undisguised pressure on its NATO allies, chances are high that it will get away with it.

How do Turkey’s actions in Syria differ from what Russia is doing in Ukraine? Well, actually in nothing. Moreover, de jure, Russia’s operation in Ukraine is more justified. Moscow recognized the rebellious republics of Donbass, negotiated with Zelensky, demanding fairly justified concessions from him and only after seeing all its demands ignored by Kiev, finally sent in troops.

Erdoğan’s decision to launch a new “peacekeeping” operation in Syria largely came as a surprise, even though Turkey has certainly had problems with Kurdish separatists for many years now. The Turkish operation is to create a security zone, that is, to seize Syrian land 30 kilometers deep into the country’s territory. In fact, Ankara wants to achieve a decisive victory over the Kurdish rebels, regardless of the fact that they enjoy the direct support from the United States. At the same time, Erdoğan made his agreement to Sweden’s and Finland’s acceptance to NATO conditional on their recognition of the Kurdish liberation movements as terrorist organizations. After Stockholm and Helsinki flatly refused to, Erdoğan decided to demonstrate his determination to the world, knowing full well that, unlike Moscow, he would go unpunished.

As a result, Turkey, unfazed by a weak and useless condemnation from the UN, went on to destroy Kurdish militia units in a foreign country. As for Damascus, it officially recognizes the Kurdish autonomy and does not consider the Kurdish forces as a terrorist organization. The Kurds are neither diehard fanatics, not terrorists. In fact, deprived of statehood for 100 years, they want one thing – their own country. And this demand is by no means unfair, especially in view of the people’s UN-declared right to self-determination. By the way, it is exactly for this right and against the actual genocide of the ethnic Russians that the Russian army is fighting in Ukraine. And still, Moscow has been slapped with a pile of hard-hitting sanctions, while Kiev receives huge shipments of free weapons to fight Russian aggression! Meanwhile, the assistance that the Kurds are getting from the United States has recently been shrinking, making them virtually incapable of resisting the Turkish army. At the same time, the Turks, de facto, consider all Kurds as terrorists and are all set to simply “cleanse” the security zone from their presence.

Will any measures be taken against Turkey? Naturally not. It will retain its NATO membership, feeling free to kill thousands of people on the territory of a neighboring country and block the Swedes’ and Finns’ desire to join the alliance until they bend under its demands. At the same time, with Russia, a loyal ally of Syria, having its hands full with the military operation in Ukraine, Ankara’s appetites may go through the roof. Neither should we forget about northern Iraq, where Kurds also live and there is no one to stop Erdoğan. So, exactly what else Turkey is going to do under the guise of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict remains anyone’s guess.


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