In yet another event of what appears to be an unending string of Obama administration missteps, misstatements, and misrepresentations, the White House has been forced to back away from statements initially made on Sunday by National Security Advisor Susan Rice boasting that the U.S. had finally secured Turkey’s agreement to permit U.S. and NATO air bases on its soil to be used in operations against ISIS forces in Syria and Iraq.
Just hours after U.S. officials boasted on Monday that it had secured “a breakthrough agreement” allowing for the use of bases in Turkey, the Turkish Prime Minister’s office issued a rare public statement denying that any such deal had been reached and that negotiations were very much ongoing.
The misleading representations regarding progress on a basing deal with Turkey that forced the White House to back-pedal, seemed to initiate once again with false comments made Sunday by U.S. National Security official Susan Rice.
During an appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press program, Rice claimed an agreement with Turkey had been reached, calling it “a new commitment and one that we very much welcome.”
It was Rice, who, in September 2012, took to all five nationally broadcast public affairs programs to proclaim that the coordinated attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya that killed American Ambassador Christopher Stephens along with three other Americans, was in fact a spontaneous demonstration turned violent that was incited by an obscure anit-Islamic video made in the United States.
After being pressed on whether or not a deal had finally been reached with the Turkish government, Rice said on Sunday, ‘They have said that their facilities inside of Turkey inside of Turkey can be used by the coalition forces — American and otherwise — to engage in activities inside of Iraq and Syria.”
Following Monday’s Turkish denial, the Obama Administration found itself facing renewed speculation that the rift in relations between Ankara and Washington is deepening.
The Obama Administration has been pressing Turkey to permit the US to use its own airbase at Incirlik, in southeastern Turkey, in its campaign against the ISIS terror army which by the day appears to be growing in power, stature and territory.