President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Turkey’s military has launched a long-expected offensive into northeastern Syria targeting US-allied Syrian Kurdish fighters that have played a central role in the fight against the Islamic State militant group.
A shameful act by an authoritarian state against one of the few good actors in the region who have opposed both Islamic State and the Syrian regime.
The White House announced Sunday that it was withdrawing US troops from the area that Turkey planned to invade, igniting a firestorm of criticism. Republican leaders denounced Trump’s abandonment of the Kurds. Pentagon officials struggled with explanations, humanitarian workers warned of civilian casualties, and Kurdish commanders said they might be forced to abandon their Syrian prisons holding thousands of captured Islamic State fighters and head for the front lines against Turkey.
You betray one set of allies, and others will be less willing to trust you in future.