Surrounded

With all the Trump White House News dominating each and every news cycle, it has been widely overlooked the US backed coalition in Northern Syria repelled an attack by Assad government forces.  Over 100 of the Assad forces possibly including Russians were killed. There were no coalition losses.  This group, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), is made up of 2000 US troops working with Kurdish and Arab militias.   The Assad forces are an alliance of other Syrians, Hezbollah and Iran with Russian support.  It’s well-recognized the Kurds are the backbone of this US led coalition that took the Issis Capitol Raqqa.  The Trump Administration has loudly claimed victory over Issis with this success.  The coalition is still battling Issis remnants and other extremists groups in Northern Syria to keep them from reconstituting.  To further complicate the situation, Turkey on Syria’s northern border with Russian acquiescence is attacking Kurdish forces in the Northwest Syria Afrin enclave and threatening the Kurdish elements of the coalition.  One has to ask, how did our troops end up surrounded by threats, what are we hoping to accomplish and do we really have a workable middle east plan?

The pro Assad alliance in Syria is basically a Shia Army hell-bent on reconquering the majority Sunni Country by any means possible including  chemical weapons.  Remember those were supposed to removed from Syria by the Russians.  No wonder refugees have moved into coalition held areas. So in addition to preventing a resurgence of extremists, the coalition is trying to keep  the Syrian tragedy from getting even worse. This is nothing new for the Kurds.  When so much of Iraq including Mosul fell to Issis, many of those fleeing this horror found refuge behind the guns of the Kurdish Peshmerga.  It’s hard to visualize the recapture of Mosul without Kurdish support. Both in fighting ISiS and our humanitarian efforts the Kurds have been our best ally.  In theory Turkey is our NATO ally.  Under Pres. Erdogaon this almost daily proves to be less true.  An Islamist, he has moved his nation closer to Iran and Russia and away from the West.  In Turkey there is a large  Kurdish  concentration  in the Southeast part of the country, along the Syrian border.  Turkish mistreatment of these Kurds has a long history and Erdegon  has if anything made things worse.  A successful Kurdish uprising is his worst nightmare. He might have treated the Kurds right, but that ship has sailed. Turkey like the Assad Alliance feels the need to crush the Kurdish areas along the Syrian border as a matter of survival

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