As noted yesterday, the Turkish government has yet again bombed Iraq.
This time, the reaction is a bit different.
US officials said they were "deeply concerned" after Turkey carried out a series of airstrikes Tuesday against US allies fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq.
A senior US defense official told CNN that the US was given about one hour's advance notice of the strikes by the Turkish military. The official added that no US or coalition advisers were in the vicinity.
The Turkish government claims it is targeting the PKK. Aaron Hess (INTERNATIONALSOCIALIST REVIEW) described the PKK in 2008, "The PKK emerged in 1984 as a major force in response to Turkey's oppression of its Kurdish population. Since the late 1970s, Turkey has waged a relentless war of attrition that has killed tens of thousands of Kurds and driven millions from their homes. The Kurds are the world's largest stateless population -- whose main population concentration straddles Turkey, Iraq, Iran, and Syria -- and have been the victims of imperialist wars and manipulation since the colonial period. While Turkey has granted limited rights to the Kurds in recent years in order to accommodate the European Union, which it seeks to join, even these are now at risk."
These strikes have gone on throughout the Iraq War -- often with 'clever' names -- such as Panther Operation in 2012. When Bully Boy Bush occupied the White House, the US government did not object to these strikes -- even when civilians were killed. Under Barack Obama's presidency, the Turkish attacks were still tolerated.
Loveday Morris and Kareem Fahim (WASHINGTON POST) report on the US government reaction:
“These airstrikes were not approved by the coalition and led to the unfortunate loss of life of our partner forces in the fight against ISIS that includes members of the Kurdish peshmerga,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner told reporters, using another name for the Islamic State. He said the United States was “deeply concerned” about the strikes. “We have expressed those concerns to the government of Turkey directly,” he added.
Seth J. Frantzman (JERUSALEM POST) offers:
In a paper published on April 12 by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Fabrice Balanche argued that Sinjar could be a strategic necessity for the Kurdish Rojava region of Syria as a corridor for trade to Iraq and Iran. The argument is part of a larger narrative that sees Iranian designs on Sinjar as part of its “Shia crescent” linking Tehran with Syria. In this sense, Turkey’s bombing could be part of a large regional contest for Sinjar.
The reality on the ground is more tragic, with thousands of Yazidi refugees on Sinjar Mountain still taking shelter, since some 5,000 Yazidis were murdered by Islamic State in 2014, and hundreds of thousands wish to return home to Sinjar. But they want infrastructure and security.
The Turkish intervention adds to the tensions and makes return difficult.
Turkey is also sending a deeper message to the US in Syria. While the US may conquer Raqqa with the SDF, the Turkey wants to show that they will act with impunity against the PKK or YPG in Syria or Iraq, overflying US forces to do so if needed.
Onur Ant and Firat Kozok (BLOOMBERG NEWS) explain, "Turkey classifies the YPG as terrorists, while the U.S. sees it as one of the most effective allies against Islamic State and has deployed special forces to work alongside the group. The division has fueled tensions between the NATO allies." SPUTNIK adds, "Turkey's actions in Iraq violate the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country, Tehran supports Baghdad's position on the issue, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said in a statement Wednesday." RUDAW notes, "The Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) Advisor said the Turkish airstrike on Mount Shingal which left five Peshmerga soldiers dead and nine others wounded 'was a surprise' and that they had asked Ankara for 'clarification' with regards to the incident." And ALMASDAR NEWS reports:
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-‘Abadi issued a statement on Tuesday condemning the Turkish military’s unauthorized incursion into Iraq’s Sinjar Mountains today.
‘Abadi not only condemned the the Turkish military’s incursion into northwest Iraq, he also issued a stern warning to Ankara about carrying out such attacks in the future.
Meanwhile, it's day 189 of The Mosul Slog.
Hunar Ahmed (RUDAW) reports, "US advisors, Iraqi Shiite paramilitaries converging west of Mosul." And Jim Michaels (USA TODAY) notes that the Iraqi military is now using drones to attack the Islamic State.
Yes, the Iraq War continues.
And I often wonder about the stooges of #theResistance who have no clue that the Iraq War didn't continue under Barack Obama.
But then THE GUARDIAN publishes crap like the latest by Tom Engelhardt (for TOMDISPTACH) entitled "Presenting the Trump doctrine: 'forever war'."
What a joy it is for Tom to have a Republican in the White House again -- it's back to trashing the government for the Iraq War.
Something, please note, that did not happen under Barack.
I'm not remember reading about the Barack doctrine "forever war."
Even though Barack was elected to end the Iraq War but, as president, he elected to continue it.
And the Afghanistan War as well.
The problem with trash like Tom is he's not independent.
He is paid by The Nation Institute.
So like Katrina vanden Heuvel, he's going to ignore wars under Democrats or offer weak opposition.
But when he can spew against a Republican, he'll go to town.
That's now peace, that's not anti-war.
And it helps no one.
The following community sites -- plus Jody Watley, Cindy Sheehan and Tavis Smiley -- updated:
iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraqiraq iraq iraq iraq iraq iraq