Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Turkey continues bombing, the US government remains silent as Iraq objects

This morning, Suzan Fraser and Desmond Butler (AP) note that Turkish war planes continued to bomb northern Iraq.

And that's really all they note.

Yesterday's snapshot included Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and the Cabinet of Minister's objection to the bombings.

Reuters, noting today's is said to be the largest attack so far (in this round which started only last week), includes this:

The Iraqi government condemned the attack as “a dangerous escalation and an assault on Iraqi sovereignty”. In a statement posted to the prime minister Haider al-Abadi’s website on Tuesday, Baghdad called on Turkey to avoid further escalation and seek a resolution to the crisis.

They may mean Haider al-Abadi's Twitter feed.  On his official website, I'm not finding anything in English or in Arabic regarding this but he did post it on his Twitter feed yesterday.  Today's Zaman notes, "In a three-part message posted on his official Twitter account Tuesday, al-Abadi said that the council is committed 'not to allow any attack on Turkey from Iraqi territory and called on Turkey to respect good relations'."

In the wake of Haider's statement, the State Dept refuses to hold a press briefing and Brett McGurk goes silent on Twitter.  This after the official position had been that they stood with Turkey and that Turkey had the right to carry out these bombings on Iraq.

Iraq's Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari is not silent.  Alsumaria reports al-Jaafari has stated any bombings must be approved and coordinated with the Baghdad-based government of Iraq.  All Iraq News adds that he expressed this to Farouq Qaimagja, Turkey's ambassador to Iraq.

Alsumaria reports the most recent bombings largely did little more than set forests and farming areas on fire and cause panic to those living in nearby villages.

They also note that, as Turkey bombs the Kurdistan region, Iran's Deputy National Security Secretary Mohamed Amiri visited Erbil to stress that the government of Iran supports the KRG and will do their part to ensure the stability and security of the Kurdistan region.

The US government's decision to give the go ahead to these bombings more and more appears to prove  Patrick Cockburn's prediction Monday (Independent):

The result is that the US may find it has helped to destabilise Turkey by involving it in the war in both Iraq and Syria, yet without coming much closer to defeating Isis in either country. If so, America will have committed its biggest mistake in the Middle East since it invaded Iraq in 2003, believing it could overthrow Saddam Hussein and replace him with a pro-American government. 

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