(ANTIWAR.COM) — With Turkey having captured the Afrin District over the weekend, President Erdogan is even more bellicose about the ongoing invasion of Syrian Kurdistan on Monday. He is even suggesting the offensive could grow more than ever expected.
Erdogan is now saying that the offensive is going to span the entire Turkish border with Kurdish territory. This includes not just Manbij, the long-expected next target, from further east towns like Kobane and Qmishili as well.
These are both potentially huge targets, with Kobane having risen to fame during intense fighting with ISIS as a key Kurdish territory. Qmishili is the reputed site of a US airbase as well, which means it’s another location where, like Manbij, a Turkish invasion puts them in line to fight US forces.
Erdogan went on to declare “one night we could suddenly enter Sinjar.” That’s an ever more extreme declaration, because Sinjar isn’t in Syria in the first place. Rather, Sinjar is a Yazidi town in Iraq’s Nineveh Province, and while Yazidis are ethnic Kurds, a sudden Turkish invasion of Iraq would be a very strange way indeed to escalate fighting with the Syrian Kurds.
US Claims ISIS ‘Rebuilding’ in Syria as Turkey Invasion Distracts From Fight
(ANTIWAR.COM) — Trump Administration officials have tried for the past two months to stall the Turkish invasion of Syrian Kurdistan, arguing that it “distracts” from the fight against ISIS. That ISIS is virtually defeated in Syria, by all accounts, meant Turkey didn’t take this seriously.
Now, the State Department is claiming that Turkey”s distraction has not only given ISIS an opportunity to recover, but that ISIS is “reconstituting in some areas.” They didn’t not provide any details on where this was.
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry was quick to respond, calling the US claims “completely groundless.” They added that US support for the Kurds is what actually undermines fighting terror, as Turkey considers the US-backed Kurds terrorists.
Turkey is downplaying the significance of their invasion and occupation of Afrin, saying their own troops won’t stay in the district. The intention, rather, is to set up Turkey-backed rebels as the ruling force, allowing Turkey’s military to invade more Kurdish territory.
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