A bird's eye view of the vineyard
Battle For Tripoli Airport 2.0 Wed Jun 03, 2020 00:06 | amarynth
South Front A new round of intense fighting has broken out between the Libyan National Army (LNA) and Turkish-backed forces near Tripoli. During the past few days, fighters from the
Italy?s worst virus? Its ultracasta Tue Jun 02, 2020 13:01 | amarynth
by Postfataresurgo for the Saker Blog Years ago, as Italy?s real estate market was spiraling upward after the euro came into effect, I strived to be of assistance to a
Lebanon?s path of corruption and destruction Tue Jun 02, 2020 12:52 | amarynth
By Intibah Kadi for the Saker Blog With COVID-19 capturing almost total world attention, eyes are not focused on the numerous alarming events occurring around the world. In Lebanon, a
Rebellions across the US: Why worry? Just ask Dr. Fauci to tell us what to do Tue Jun 02, 2020 05:03 | The Saker
by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog The headline says it all – why even write the article? Journalism has – of course, and with universal unanimity – become merely
Syrian Air Force Received Batch Of MiG-29 Jets From Russia Mon Jun 01, 2020 19:42 | amarynth
South Front Russia has intensified its military involvement in the Syrian conflict. On May 30, Syrian state media announced that it had received a batch of MiG-29 multirole fighters from
The Saker >>
A Blog About Human Rights
Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights
Turkish President Calls On Greece To Comply With Human Rights on Syrian Refugee Issues Wed Mar 04, 2020 17:58 | Human Rights
US Holds China To Account For Human Rights Violations Sun Oct 13, 2019 19:12 | Human Rights
UN Human Rights Council Should Address Human Rights Crisis in Cambodia Sat Aug 31, 2019 13:41 | Human Rights
Fijian women still face Human Rights violations Mon Aug 26, 2019 18:49 | Human Rights
Human Rights in Ireland >>
"A flaky website that purports to be ?leftist,? The Cedar Lounge Revolution, occasionally makes a relevant point or two."
Assumptions? wrong 11:19 Wed Jun 03, 2020 | WorldbyStorm
Elites 10:48 Wed Jun 03, 2020 | WorldbyStorm
What you want to say ? 3 June 2020 07:34 Wed Jun 03, 2020 | WorldbyStorm
Promises made, promises broken? 12:00 Tue Jun 02, 2020 | WorldbyStorm
Attitudes to the lockdown 10:29 Tue Jun 02, 2020 | WorldbyStorm
Cedar Lounge >>
Life should be full of strangeness, like a rich painting
Some Thoughts on the Brexit Joint Report 11:50 Sat Dec 09, 2017
IRISH COMMONWEALTH: TRADE UNIONS AND CIVIL SOCIETY IN THE 21ST CENTURY 14:06 Sat Nov 18, 2017
Notes for a Book on Money and the Irish State - The Marshall Aid Program 15:10 Sat Apr 02, 2016
The Financial Crisis:What Have We Learnt? 19:58 Sat Aug 29, 2015
Money in 35,000 Words or Less 21:34 Sat Aug 22, 2015
Dublin Opinion >>
One Year on From Afrin, and now East of the Euphrates: More War?
anti-war / imperialism |
Saturday January 19, 2019 11:57 by séamas carraher - globalrights.info
It seems that the fate of the Kurds and their allies and neighbours in this tormented part of the world depends on the quickly changing allegiances between a number of international players – none of which you would trust to walk your grandmother across a busy road
“The goal of the United States from delaying this agreement is to make room for Turkey to enter easily when the US withdraw from its military bases...” (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights)
The Euphrates river starts out in eastern Turkey, then flows through Syria and Iraq on its way south to the Persian Gulf, its water once offering life to the people and communities it passed. Somewhere near its destination rumours hold that the Garden of Eden existed. Not so any more. Since war has come to stay in the region. If there was a time, pre-history, when harmony reigned, that time has obviously long passed and history now seems more to be an endless account of disagreement and murder with one section of our human-animal population seeking to wipe out the other...
With Turkey’s ongoing threats (backed up by its military buildup both sides (Turkey/Syria) of the border) against the area east of the Euphrates river in northern Syria, exasperated also by ongoing confused reports of the U.S. withdrawal from the region generating increasing tension in the area, a recent report from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has drawn attention to the Machiavellian scheming that has masqueraded as policy in relation to the future of this vulnerable part of the north of Syria and in particular what this future might hold for the ‘'autonomous' Kurdish controlled areas of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria.
“Reliable sources” close to the Observatory, and certainly following Donald Trump’s phone conversation with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, “confirmed...that the leadership of the United States of America, is seeking to hand over the entire east of Euphrates area; and leave it to its destiny which it has prepared and continues to prepare with Turkey, by pushing Turkey to impose its full supervision over the area, which extends from the outskirts of Manbij to the Syrian-Iraqi border, under the name of a “self-administrative area...”
The Kurds and their allies in the Syrian Democratic Forces have controlled a number of areas in northern Syria since the region gained its de facto autonomy from the Assad regime in 2012 as part of the wider Syrian Civil War.
Since the Turkish annexation of Afrin was ‘completed’ in March last year, Turkish President and Chairman of the ruling Justice and Development Party Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has threatened a military offensive against the remaining Kurdish-held areas in northern Syria. “Mr Erdogan undoubtedly intends in the long term to eliminate the de facto Kurdish state that developed in northern and eastern Syria as the result of the advance of the YPG, backed by US air power, in the war against Isis. But it is unlikely that he will seek a confrontation with the US, which is sending out patrols of armoured vehicles into the front lines around Manbij, a strategically placed city between Aleppo and the Euphrates...” Patrick Cockburn wrote for the Independent following the Turkish entry into Afrin city, along with its Islamist allies, in March 2018.
Now with Mr. Trump’s chaotic decision to withdraw US support, announced on 19th December, the wolves have once again been gathering at the borders... resulting in what the Syrian Observatory has described as “a state of confusion in the local, regional, and international circles...” with the end result being that the region east of the Euphrates “which is controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces...” is “in front of multiple scenarios...”
Analysing these potential “scenarios” the Observatory as well as through “linking with several private and reliable sources” have articulated what “is being arranged for in the East Euphrates area by the regional and international powers...”
As usual there is nothing but bad news to be expected from these 'grey eminences'...
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights:
“Reliable private sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights that the leadership of the United States of America, is seeking to hand over the entire east of Euphrates area; and leave it to its destiny which it has prepared and continues to prepare with Turkey, by pushing Turkey to impose its full supervision over the area, which extends from the outskirts of Manbij to the Syrian-Iraqi border, under the name of “self-administrative area,” run by the Kurdish National Council in Syria and with a military deployment of the forces of “Rojava Peshmerga” and an administration belonging to the National Coalition and it will include all components of the area, and it will be under direct Turkish supervision...”
Despite Turkish ‘dislike’ for the ruling Democratic Union Party (PYD), the Kurdish National Council arguably has little support left in the areas that Turkey would like to “administer’ in northern Syria in this scenario: “The Kurdish National Council has been widely criticized in Syrian Kurdistan. The KNC has been accused of working with Turkey and the Syrian Salafist opposition forces against the Federation of Northern Syria – Rojava...” (Wikipedia) while the experience of Afrin since Turkey took over its “administration” can only leave observers panic-stricken at the thought of “more business as usual”, Turkish-style, elsewhere in Syria/Rojava; a style recently explained in the Washington Post:
“Turkey now sees itself as emerging from America’s shadow as an independent geopolitical actor that owes fealty to no one. Erdogan makes no secret of the fact that he wants to oversee the rebirth of the Turkish empire. He views Turkey’s traditional ties with the West, including NATO, as unequal and at times unfavorable to his interests. He sees the world as an arena of great power competition, with Turkey standing alongside China, Russia, Europe and the United States. That’s an exaggerated view of Turkey’s power and capacity — but not to Erdogan.” (Asli Aydintasbas & Jeremy Shapiro)
...an empire with an appalling record in respecting the basic rights of its peoples, leaving us once again to wonder if it is not still true for the Kurds: “No friends but the mountains”?
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights:
“Reliable sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory that all the promises given by the United States of America so far are only a trick to delay any agreements or consensus for the Syrian Democratic Forces with the regime forces and the Russians, and that the goal of the United States from delaying this agreement is to make room for Turkey to enter easily when the US withdraw from its military bases in Manbij and east of Euphrates.”
That said, the talks with the Assad regime had already begun in July last year:
“If the regime accepts our vision and project of a decentralized system, and accepts all groups and factions, then our views will be more aligned, and we may actually reach a solution...” - Salih Muslim, former co-president of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), said.
Alas, since then, it appears this progress is not to be...Unfortunately:
“The regime did not come forward when it was weak, Ismail said. Now it has regained its strength with Russian backing, the Kurds find themselves at a disadvantage.” (Rudaw)
“The Syrian Observatory also learned that the United States did not expect at all that the Syrian Democratic Forces may approach the regime and begin consultations with it and with the Russians, in order to reach a consensus on the future of the east Euphrates area, of which Turkey aspires to control, also the process of leaving weapons and military equipment by the United States of America to the Syrian Democratic Forces comes in the context of creating an additional motive for the latter to confront Turkey, and enter the area into a war that could claim large casualties and destruction...”
As to the future – one in which:
“...at the moment, there are reportedly 80,000 Turkish troops lined up on the Turkish-Syrian border threatening an incursion into areas held by Syrian Kurdish forces, which are still backed up by U.S. special forces...” (Washington Post)
- it seems that the fate of the Kurds and their allies and neighbours in this tormented part of the world depends on the quickly changing allegiances between a number of international players – none of which you would trust to walk your grandmother across a busy road:
“...while the reliable sources told the Syrian Observatory that the Russians opposed what the United States of America suggested about the future of the east of Euphrates, and Russia insisted on the withdrawal of Turkey from Idlib and Afrin if entering the east of Euphrates area.”
So almost exactly a full year following the most recent Turkish invasion of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, and with the almost 8 year long Syrian Civil war reaching burnout and hopes mounting for an eventual peaceful outcome for all people living in the region, and despite all talk earlier this week about "safe zones", it seems, after the talking has finished, all the Kurds and the other ethnic minorities under threat in this part of Syria can expect, is more war:
“The deployment of Turkish soldiers will begin along a 500-kilometer-long front from ten different locations, 10 kilometers deep into the border, with the aim of clearing an area of 30,000 square kilometers from Kurdish militants, Yeni Şafak said. The second phase of the attack will involve advancing ten additional kilometers from the border, it added, noting that the Turkish military have taken ‘intel and security measures to counter any possible tribal resistance in regions east of the Euphrates.’” (Ahval, January 16th)
... and yet another period where their culture, their identify, their human rights, including the most basic, the right to life, will be violently suppressed, once again under the watchful if not predatory eye of these so-called “world powers...”
Peace, of course, is another option. Not being “good for business”, might be the reason why no-one (in power) is currently suggesting it?