Friday, March 23, 2007

Will Turkey invade Iraq?

David Seaton's News Links
You can see what a Pandora's box the US opened when it invaded Iraq. The wheels are really coming off this thing.

Turkey has a very powerful army and is the former imperial power of Iraq... If the British, who took over from Turkey in Iraq and the Americans who took over from the British cannot control the situation in Iraq the Turks are not going to sit on their hands.

This in turn, has almost infinite ramifications all over the Mediterranean, if you study the reach of the Ottoman Empire you will see that as the article from Wikipedia says, "The empire was at the center of interactions between the Eastern and Western worlds for six centuries", this was and is about Turkey's size, power and location. Just when you think things can't get any worse, they get... much worse. DS
US struggles to avert Turkish intervention in northern Iraq - Guardian
Abstract: The US is scrambling to head off a "disastrous" Turkish military intervention in Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq that threatens to derail the Baghdad security surge and open up a third front in the battle to save Iraq from disintegration.(...) Fighting between security forces and Kurdish fighters seeking autonomy or independence for Kurdish-dominated areas of south-east Turkey has claimed 37,000 lives since 1984. The last big Turkish operation occurred 10 years ago, when 40,000 troops pushed deep into Iraq. But intervention in the coming weeks would be the first since the US took control of Iraq in 2003 and would risk direct confrontation between Turkish troops and Iraqi Kurdish forces and their US allies. Several other factors are adding to the tension between the Nato partners: The firm Turkish belief that the US is playing a double game in northern Iraq. Officials say the CIA is covertly funding and arming the PKK's sister organisation, the Iran-based Kurdistan Free Life party, to destabilise the Iranian government. US acquiescence in plans to hold a referendum in oil-rich Kirkuk in northern Iraq. Turkey suspects Iraqi Kurds are seeking control of Kirkuk as a prelude to the creation of an independent Kurdistan. Plans by the US Congress to vote on a resolution blaming Turkey for genocide against the Armenians in 1915. Faruk Logoglu, a former ambassador to Washington, said that if the resolution passed, relations "could take generations to recover". Record levels of Turkish anti-Americanism dating back to 2003, when Turkey refused to let US combat forces cross the Iraq border.(...) The US is already fighting Sunni insurgents and Shia militias. Analysts say a surge in violence in northern Iraq, previously the most stable region, could capsize the entire US plan. But pressure on the Turkish prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, is also growing as a result of forthcoming elections. Military intervention was narrowly avoided last summer when he said that "patience was at an end" over US prevarication. Now conservatives and nationalists are again accusing him of not standing up to Washington. "If they are killing our soldiers ... and if public pressure on the government increases, of course we will have to intervene," said Ali Riza Alaboyun, an MP for Mr Erdogan's Justice and Development party. "It is the legal right of any country to protect its people and its borders." US support for Iranian Kurds opposed to the Tehran government is adding to the agitation. "The US is trying to undermine the Iran regime, using the Kurds like it is using the MEK [the anti-Tehran People's Mujahideen]," said Dr Logoglu. "Once you begin to differentiate between 'good' and 'bad' terrorist organisations, then you lose the war on terror." But he warned that military intervention might be ineffective and could be "disastrous" in destabilising the region. A recent national security council assessment also suggested that senior Turkish commanders were cautious about the prospects of success. READ IT ALL


cs said...

Bear in mind that the Turkish military has a reputation of fighting and getting things done first, and worrying about "don't ask, don't tell", "environmental impact statements" and the "beltway bandits" second, if at all.

When the Turks fought besides the Brits in Korea, they took significantly more casualties, but made a real dent in the Communist lines.

If they move in to Iraq, they will mean business.

RLaing said...

We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality...

I'll say.

Really, people who write political thrillers must be just eaten alive with envy. I know I would be. Even if some incredibly gifted person had written a novel about the decline and fall of the American Empire that took as its premise events as they are actually unfolding, he/she could never have gotten it published, because fiction has to be credible.

The only reason I believe any of this is that I have no choice: it's all happening in real time, right in front of my eyes.

David Seaton's Newslinks said...

"The only reason I believe any of this is that I have no choice: it's all happening in real time, right in front of my eyes."

Excellent comment!