This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com
- Six Turkish soldiers killed in explosion a day after Ankara attack
- New terrorist attacks cause further splits in US-Turkey relationship
- Russia’s attacks on civilian hospitals in Aleppo follow the ‘Grozny model’
Six Turkish soldiers killed in explosion a day after Ankara attack
Turkish security officials say that Russia bombing of civilian hospitals is following the ‘Grozny model’ used in Grozny, Chechnya (AFP)
Six soldiers were killed in southeastern Turkey on Thursday by a roadside bombing that hit an armored military vehicle. Like Wednesday’s huge attack in Ankara, this appeared to be an attack targeting military personnel. Turkish officials blame both attacks on the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party).
The PKK is a separatist group that has conducted numerous terrorist attacks in Turkey since 1984. They have frequently attacked military targets in the past. Turkey’s government and the PKK had agreed to a ceasefire three years ago, but it collapsed last year, after a July 20 terrorist attack in the city of attack on Suruç killed 33 people, mostly young pro-Kurdish activists. Erdogan declared war on the PKK, and it appeared that Turkey was slipping into chaos as violence spread across the country.
Since July, there have been months of military operations, curfews, attacks and hundreds of dead and injured, especially in southeast Turkey, which is the heart of the Kurdish separatist movement and home to much of the PKK. CNN
New terrorist attacks cause further splits in US-Turkey relationship
No one has claimed responsibility for Wednesday’s terror attack in Ankara, in which 28 people, at least 20 of them military personnel, were killed, with 60 injured. Many people suspect that it was perpetrated not by the PKK, but by the so-called Islamic State (IS or ISIS or ISIL or Daesh).
The question of responsibility is causing a further split between Turkey and the US. Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, blames the attack on the PKK and also on the YPG, the Kurdish militias fighting in Syria. According to Erdogan:
Even if the leaders of YPG or PKK deny being involved in the attack, there is evidence proving they were behind it.
Erdogan would like to provide that evidence to the US and the west, and finally settle on a joint policy to fight Kurdish terrorism.
Erdogan has for months been saying that the YPG is a terrorist organization with links to the PKK. This presents a problem for US-Turkey relations, since the YPG is the force that the Obama administration is counting on to fight ISIS on the ground in Syria.
However, the YPG militias around Aleppo are not fighting ISIS, and are nowhere near ISIS. They are fighting so-called “moderate” rebels who, incidentally, are also supposed to be US allies. The YPG militias, backed by massive Russian and Syrian airstrikes that are targeting civilian neighborhoods, schools and hospitals, are creating tens of thousands refugees that are headed for the border with Turkey.
Already, Turkey has set up 8 refugee camps on the Syrian side of the border. Turkey is accusing the YPG militias of being the foot soldiers not in the fight against ISIS, but instead allied with the Bashar al-Assad regime and the Russians with a strategy of forcing tens of thousands of new refugees to enter Turkey, as a kind of weapon of war.
So from Turkey’s point of view, there is the PKK’s long history of terrorist attacks in Turkey, and there is the YPG’s strategy to force tens of thousands more refugees into Turkey, and according to Erdogan, there is the evidence linking the YPG and the PKK to Wednesday’s horrific terror attack in Ankara.
Erdogan points out that when the Charlie Hebdo attack occurred in Paris a year ago, there was widespread international sympathy for France, but when Turkey suffers one terrorist attack after another, the West does not seem to care, and some even blame Turkey, the victim.
From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, this public attitude towards Turkey is very interesting. Long-time readers know that ten years ago I predicted, based on a generational analysis, that Russia and Iran would become America’s allies, and the Sunni Muslim countries would become America’s enemies, as everyone is forced to choose sides in the approaching world war. Ten years ago, that prediction seemed preposterous, and today no one is more astonished than I am to watch it come to pass.
What is particularly startling to me is when people reading my articles post comments making Bashar al-Assad into some sort of hero.
Bashar al-Assad is much worse than ISIS. When ISIS tortures someone or forces the people in a village to pay taxes or be killed, the West is horrified. But when al-Assad performs mass torture, or uses barrel bombs to kill everyone in a village, then no one seems to care. When ISIS attacks a school or hospital, everyone is horrified. But al-Assad and the Russians attacked several schools and hospitals in the last week alone, and many more in the past. As I’ve written several times in the past, al-Assad is the genocidal monster of the modern age.
People ask me how I could say that we could be allies with al-Assad when I call him a genocidal monster. Well, we can see it happening right before our eyes, can’t we? And I always point to what happened in World War II. Josef Stalin was responsible for the mass starvation, torture, and mass slaughter of tens of millions of people. Stalin, Adolf Hitler, Pol Pot and Mao Zedong were the greatest genocidal monsters of the twentieth century, and yet Stalin was our ally because we had to choose. That’s the way the world works, Dear Reader.
So Erdogan would like to see greater support from the US and the West, but Generational Dynamics predicts that that’s not the way the world is going. We can expect Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and other Sunni nations to become further estranged from the US, and we can expect the US to be more closely allied with Iran, the great sponsor of international terrorism, as well as Bashar al-Assad and Russia. Today’s Zaman (Istanbul) and BBC and Today’s Zaman and Washington Post
Russia’s attacks on civilian hospitals in Aleppo follow the ‘Grozny model’
The massive attack on the city of Aleppo by Syrian and Russian warplanes pounding civilians with missiles and barrel bombs, in conjunction with ground attacks by YPG militias, is said to be a Russian army tactic known as the “Grozny model.”
Turkish security officials say that in Russia’s 1990s war with Chechnya, Russian warplanes bombed schools and hospitals in order to create a refugee crisis, and to empty the urban residential areas. Once that was achieved, heavy weapons could be deployed to eradicate opposing forces, entailing widespread destruction of homes and infrastructure.
It has becoming increasingly apparent that the purpose of the “Grozny model” strategy being followed by Russia and al-Assad is to create a de facto Kurdish state in northern Syria along the border with Turkey. This strategy is completely intolerable to Turkey, and even if it succeeded, it would certainly lead to continued war.
However, even without succeeding, this Russian strategy is leading to war. Turkey’s tanks have been shelling YPG positions in Syria, as we have reported several times in the last week.
And now there are new reports that hundreds of armed anti-Assad rebels are crossing from Turkey into Syria. News reports do not explain where these rebels are coming from, but the assumption is that they entered Turkey from other parts of Syria. Hurriyet (Ankara) and Guardian (London) and EU Observer and Guardian
KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Turkey, Ankara, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Islamic State / of Iraq and Syria/Sham/the Levant, IS, ISIS, ISIL, Daesh, Kurdistan Workers’ Party, PKK, YPG, Syria, Russia, Aleppo, Grozny model, Chechnya war
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