Turkey authorizes military action against Syria

posted at 9:21 am on October 4, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Until now, NATO has refused to follow the path in Syria that it laid out in haste against Libya — military intervention ostensibly to stop a massacre of civilians, but actually to decapitate the regime.  They may not have much choice after today.  NATO member Turkey has authorized military action against Syria in response to a cross-border attack from Bashar Assad’s forces that killed five civilians, and that defense effort may end up trapping NATO into the conflict it clearly doesn’t want to enter:

Turkey’s parliament voted Thursday to authorize military cross-border operations into Syria, a day after an apparently errant mortar strike from inside Syria killed five Turkish civilians.

Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay told the Associated Press that the 320-129 vote “is not for war,” but is intended to deter Syria from further violence that could spill over the border.

Turkey has shown a willingness in the past to send troops into neighboring countries to address perceived threats to its safety. Specifically, it repeatedly sent forces into Iraq to combat Kurdish guerrillas who had struck at Turkish targets.

Even before Thursday’s vote, Turkey launched two rounds of artillery attacks against Syria — Wednesday night and Thursday — in retaliation for the deaths of its five civilians, marking the most serious escalation in international tensions since the Syrian revolt erupted 19 months ago.

The NATO defense doctrine has always been “an attack on one is an attack on all.”  That doesn’t make NATO participation automatic, but it will put tremendous pressure on NATO to ally with the only Muslim member of their coalition.  It presents an opportunity for NATO to intervene, but the fallout from their Libyan adventure and the lack of good choices in Syria has kept NATO from engaging.  If Turkey goes to war — and that’s still a big if — NATO might not have any choice but to assist its member with no-fly zone operations at the very least to protect Turkish ground forces.

Russia already sees this danger, and wants Assad to apologize immediately to defuse the situation:

Amid growing international concerns that the conflict could escalate further, Syria’s ally Russia on Thursday urged Syria to publicly admit that its forces had fired the shell that killed the civilians.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said the Syrian authorities had told him the incident “was a tragic accident and that it will not happen again,” the Russian news agency RIA quoted him as saying during a visit to Islamabad.

“We think it is of fundamental importance for Damascus to state that officially,” he added.

That’s a sphere-of-influence concern talking.  Russia has strong relations with Syria, and doesn’t want NATO to topple Assad to install a West-friendly regime in his place — or worse yet, an Islamist regime that will bridge the gap between Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and Iranian mullahs.  The latter is a concern for NATO and the West, or at least it should be.  Considering the drift of Turkey’s government towards Islamist politics, even a Turkish occupation under NATO’s umbrella would spell trouble for all sides.

Keep an eye on this conflict.  It’s more likely to go hot than the Iran/Israel standoff.

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Turkey loses 5 civilians and their federal government retaliates with artillery.

America loses 4 civilians and our federal government apologizes to the aggressors.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:26 AM

Time for decisive Presidential action.

So what will it be? Leno, Letterman or struttin’ eye candy for The View again?

bobcalco on October 4, 2012 at 9:27 AM

Obviously Turkey is shooting first and asking questions later..

Electrongod on October 4, 2012 at 9:28 AM

We should be VERY wary about getting in bed with the neo-Ottoman Turks. The same entangling alliances that oblige us to fight their enemies in Syria should they declare war can and likely will be used against Israel and or Saudi Arabia if and when the precedent is set.

abobo on October 4, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Turkey loses 5 civilians and their federal government retaliates with artillery.

America loses 4 civilians and our federal government apologizes to the aggressors.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:26 AM

If only we had the opportunity to change our leadership……. oh, wait.

Bitter Clinger on October 4, 2012 at 9:30 AM

Turkey loses 5 civilians and their federal government retaliates with artillery.

America loses 4 civilians and our federal government apologizes to the aggressors.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:26 AM

…for the bumps in the road!

KOOLAID2 on October 4, 2012 at 9:30 AM

The Syrians killed 2 women and 3 little girls when they lobbed that missile into a housing area.

I hope the Turks crush them.

karenhasfreedom on October 4, 2012 at 9:30 AM

So Turkey’s backing Syrian rebels prior to this was unauthorized military action?

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:31 AM

Time for decisive Presidential action.

So what will it be? Leno, Letterman or struttin’ eye candy for The View again?

bobcalco on October 4, 2012 at 9:27 AM

…I think JugEars prefers to cross his legs on the View!

KOOLAID2 on October 4, 2012 at 9:32 AM

Obviously Turkey is shooting first and asking questions later..

Electrongod on October 4, 2012 at 9:28 AM

Turkey (and by extension, the United States) was giving support to Syrian rebels. So yes, obviously Turkey was shooting first.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:33 AM

Let’s see… Russia and Iran friendly Assad regime in one corner. NATO ally Turkey in the other. Anyone else get the feeling this thing is one Austro-Hungarian royal assassination from a good old fashioned global conflict?

Your choice on how hot or cold it gets…

Tremor on October 4, 2012 at 9:35 AM

So, I take it those five people were neither Kurds nor Armenians.

Odysseus on October 4, 2012 at 9:35 AM

Obviously Turkey is shooting first and asking questions later..

Electrongod on October 4, 2012 at 9:28 AM

They are acting stupidly.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:38 AM

The are acting stupidly.

I sense a beer summit coming on!

bobcalco on October 4, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Considering the drift of Turkey’s government towards Islamist politics

we should kick Turkey out of NATO.

rbj on October 4, 2012 at 9:42 AM

So much for the appeasement policy in the ME.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 9:42 AM

So much for the appeasement policy in the ME.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 9:42 AM

Who has been pursuing an appeasement policy in the ME?

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:44 AM

More fodder for the foreign policy debate–BRING IT!

hillsoftx on October 4, 2012 at 9:45 AM

Turkey loses 5 civilians and their federal government retaliates with artillery.

America loses 4 civilians and our federal government apologizes to the aggressors.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:26 AM

I thought for sure we’d be reading about th US carpet bombing Libya today after
last nights debate .
Maybe civilian ( let alone diplomatic ) deaths still count somewhere .

Lucano on October 4, 2012 at 9:48 AM

Lucano on October 4, 2012 at 9:48 AM

There’s time yet for President Ass Kicker to vaporize people in an effort to burnish his credentials and bolster his reelection effort.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:53 AM

America loses 4 civilians and our federal government apologizes to the aggressors.

Bishop on October 4, 2012 at 9:26 AM

And lies its ass off to the American public. But it isn’t our federal government it is Obama, Clinton, Rice and their various minions.

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 9:54 AM

Who has been pursuing an appeasement policy in the ME?

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:44 AM

Democrats with the Muslim Brotherhood. They’ve been playing footsie with them for years.

There is also Bush not questioning why a NATO ally, Turkey, suddenly pulled out of OIF just before operations started which had the US rerouting a whole division the long way. A force from the North would have forestalled the Hunt for Saddam. Turkey was never called on that.

Then there is the whole ‘What Green Revolutions?’ from Obama in Iran.

No one wanted to confront the Assad regime on CW. That goes all the way back to Daddy Assad who also went for long range missiles via an agreement with NoKo. Luckily Israel took out the budding friendship pairing up NoKo expertise and Syrian yellowcake refining. Of course Assad never signed the CWC, have to give him credit for that… but the government did sign off on the non-proliferation stuff.

Major factions in Syria? Assad regime, Muslim Brotherhood, HAMAS, Hezbollah, al Qaeda and now Turkey.

Who haven’t we appeased in that group? Not just Obama, but multiple Administrations for decades.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 9:56 AM

Who has been pursuing an appeasement policy in the ME?

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:44 AM

In my best Nancy Pelosi impression- Seriously SERIOUSLY?

The Obama administration policy has been nothing but appeasement to the Muslim nations of the ME.

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 9:58 AM

Turkey (and by extension, the United States) was giving support to Syrian rebels. So yes, obviously Turkey was shooting first.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 9:33 AM

Why on earth would you care what a foreign country like Turkey does with another foreign country like Syria? We should stay out of the affairs of all foreign countries. If Turkey wants to go to war with Syria, then it’s no concern of America’s.

Doomberg on October 4, 2012 at 9:58 AM

That doesn’t make NATO participation automatic, but it will put tremendous pressure on NATO to ally with the only Muslim member of their coalition.

Get your point Ed, but a minor quibble. Albania, the newest member of NATO, is a Muslim country also.

Trafalgar on October 4, 2012 at 10:01 AM

Really nice of them to be bros and give Barry an out after that debate disaster. After all, this gives him an opportunity to flex those great foreign policy muscles and all. He’s… what about Benghazi? Oh, crap that isn’t good, but at least there’s Eg- no, wait… um… well, nevermind then.

Gingotts on October 4, 2012 at 10:02 AM

Democrats with the Muslim Brotherhood. They’ve been playing footsie with them for years.

There is also Bush not questioning why a NATO ally, Turkey, suddenly pulled out of OIF just before operations started which had the US rerouting a whole division the long way. A force from the North would have forestalled the Hunt for Saddam. Turkey was never called on that.

Then there is the whole ‘What Green Revolutions?’ from Obama in Iran.

No one wanted to confront the Assad regime on CW. That goes all the way back to Daddy Assad who also went for long range missiles via an agreement with NoKo. Luckily Israel took out the budding friendship pairing up NoKo expertise and Syrian yellowcake refining. Of course Assad never signed the CWC, have to give him credit for that… but the government did sign off on the non-proliferation stuff.

Major factions in Syria? Assad regime, Muslim Brotherhood, HAMAS, Hezbollah, al Qaeda and now Turkey.

Who haven’t we appeased in that group? Not just Obama, but multiple Administrations for decades.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 9:56 AM

We haven’t been pursuing appeasement in the Mid-East; we are fully engaged in warfare against Iran. That isn’t appeasement. Democrats/US government aren’t trying to appease the Muslim Brotherhood; they’ve openly supported and allied with them.

The US’ position on the Gren Revolution wasn’t an example of appeasement; it was an example of non-interventionism.

If there is one thing for certain, we are not pursuing any policy of appeasement in the Mid-East; we are firmly practicing a policy of interventionism.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:03 AM

A beer summit wouldn’t be politically correct, maybe Obama can convince Ergodan and baby Assad to sit down with him and a Hookah.

jpmn on October 4, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Why on earth would you care what a foreign country like Turkey does with another foreign country like Syria? We should stay out of the affairs of all foreign countries. If Turkey wants to go to war with Syria, then it’s no concern of America’s.

Doomberg on October 4, 2012 at 9:58 AM

I agree, except that with Turkey being a member of NATO, our having military bases in Turkey, and our having nuclear weapons based in Turkey, I am not convinced that we are not involved.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Also note that the Assad regime has left the North Eastern areas of Syria under de facto Kurdish control.

The Turks fear the Kurds for demographic reasons: in 50 years Turkey will be a majority Kurdish State.

Someone has been funneling out-of-date Soviet era arms through northern Iraq and into that area, but no one is fessing up to it. Turkey has more to fear than just a Syrian State in decay. If the Kurds can cement control over the far eastern part of Syria, leaving the Arab populations and sub-populations to fight it out for the rest, that begins to get something that starts to look like a coherent Kurdish territory.

There are other actors doing things in that area, and not all of them are acting like idiots on the coast and around Damascus – something is going on. What would an Iraqi State with, say, a 35% population of Kurds look like? Which would move the entire thing to nearly 50/50 Shia/Sunni but 65/35 Arab/Kurd. The most frightening thing in the region is an autonomous Kurdish State starting with the rump of Syria in the east and looking to fuse with Iraqi Kurdistan… that would be a no-joke game changer in the ME with the US doing nothing. Movements by ethnic Kurds in Iran would become a real possibility and if backed by a real Nation State, then things would get very interesting.

Keeping things in stasis was the best of all US outcomes.

Backing the Arab Spring set a whole lot of things in motion, and not just in the Arab countries.

Be a shame to have those lovely dreams of a Caliphate ruined by a coherent Kurdish entity in its center, no?

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 10:09 AM

Time for decisive Presidential action.

So what will it be? Leno, Letterman or struttin’ eye candy for The View again?

bobcalco on October 4, 2012 at 9:27 AM

…I think JugEars prefers to cross his legs on the View!

KOOLAID2 on October 4, 2012 at 9:32 AM

The ‘girls’ on the view are so much easier to deal with than that big old mean Governor Romney!

slickwillie2001 on October 4, 2012 at 10:10 AM

The Turkish response is entirely justified, but I can’t imagine the Syrian action was anything other than a screw-up. Lobbing shells northward couldn’t possibly serve any strategic or tactical purpose with regards to their counter-insurgency efforts, and you’d think the last thing Assad needs right now is a full-blown Turkish invasion. (Alternatively, considering the rebels are now infused with a fair dose of al Qaeda-affiliated “foreign fighters,” I can at least conceive of them killing some Turkish civilians to make things harder for the Syrian regime–not that I’ve any reason to believe that’s what happened.)

Expect Assad to take his lumps (or, rather, let his military personnel take them for him) and for things to cool back down relatively quickly. He’s got more pressing things to worry about just beyond his doorstep.

Blacklake on October 4, 2012 at 10:20 AM

We haven’t been pursuing appeasement in the Mid-East; we are fully engaged in warfare against Iran. That isn’t appeasement. Democrats/US government aren’t trying to appease the Muslim Brotherhood; they’ve openly supported and allied with them.

Support for the MB started over a decade ago with Congressional help against the foreign policy of the US government. Not that anyone ever pays any attention to the President’s power. There have been talks with them for at least that long and if not longer in some of the radical leftist circles going back to the 1970′s, if the posters from places like Spain in that era are any indicator.

The US’ position on the Gren Revolution wasn’t an example of appeasement; it was an example of non-interventionism.

It was not even verbally supporting the rights of individuals to have a say in their own government. We can be non-interventionist and STILL support basic, human rights. The Obama Administration didn’t even do that, even after Neda was killed. The US does not have to send arms and equipment to back peoples wanting to have a say in their own affairs and stop their government from over-ruling them. Doing nothing was bowing to the Mullahs and supporting them in utter silence.

If there is one thing for certain, we are not pursuing any policy of appeasement in the Mid-East; we are firmly practicing a policy of interventionism.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:03 AM

The HW and W Bush Iraq wars were done in support of Kuwait and then holding Saddam to his cease-fire agreement. If the US intervened it was with UN backing and Congressional support.

The US has done little to exercise its power with the regimes we have backed to transition them slowly to more republican and representative government that safeguards the rights and lives of the minorities and women. That is the vaunted ‘soft power’ and it takes decades to exercise and successes are rare, like the Marcos regime. Again we don’t have to sacrifice men, equipment and put military might into play to have a positive effect, but that requires long lasting agreement amongst our home political parties that this is necessary. Instead we had Congresscritters visiting Assad, the MB and other characters over multiple Administrations and with no price to pay for it politically. The US vests power of making foreign policy in the President, of ratifying it with the Senate via treaties and then implementing it by standard law making. Not having House members jaunting off to see Papa or Baby Assad or members of the MB. That is even worse than appeasement: it is indecisiveness in the face of a brutal dictator and an organization that claims at least one assassination and has the allegiance of multiple terrorist organizations. Appeasement is far too NICE a term for that.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 10:20 AM

The Turkish response is entirely justified, but I can’t imagine the Syrian action was anything other than a screw-up.

Blacklake on October 4, 2012 at 10:20 AM

Turkey was giving aid and support to the rebels. Syria responded. Now Turkey feigns outrage.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:29 AM

The HW and W Bush Iraq wars were done in support of Kuwait and then holding Saddam to his cease-fire agreement. If the US intervened it was with UN backing and Congressional support.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 10:20 AM

There is no “if”. Kuwait is not part of the United States. We intervened, it makes no difference if the UN and Congress were for it.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Russia already sees this danger, and wants Assad to apologize immediately to defuse the situation . . . . . .

Ed Morrisey

.
If a foreign military force were to go into Syria, they would eventually find evidence that Russia does NOT want falling into NATO (American) hands.

Damn right Russia is in a little bit of “panic” over this.

listens2glenn on October 4, 2012 at 10:33 AM

I wonder if the Irianian people will ever forgive the US for not
supporting the Green Revolution . Even under another US president ?

Lucano on October 4, 2012 at 10:38 AM

Turkey has every right to shoot back at Syrians, but Basher Assad will kiss some Turkish heinie and all will be forgiven

dockywocky on October 4, 2012 at 10:39 AM

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 10:20 AM

.
There is no “if”. Kuwait is not part of the United States. We intervened, it makes no difference if the UN and Congress were for it.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:31 AM

.
Kuwait was supposed to have been a FRIEND of the U.S., before Iraq invaded.
That’s the second reason for going in. Maintaining a “free flow of oil at market prices” was on it’s own merit plenty of justified grounds/basis for going into Kuwait, and eventually Iraq.

listens2glenn on October 4, 2012 at 10:40 AM

I’ve noticed that the media, when talking about this incident, keep emphasizing that among the Turkish dead is a six year old boy. It seems odd that they seem to feel the need for more sympathy.

Cindy Munford on October 4, 2012 at 10:45 AM

Turkey and Syria especially the Allepo area has gone back and forth between the two
countries for hundreds of years .
We buy Aleppo pepper ( listed from Turkey ) at Penzeys Spices . Great mild hot with a unique
flavor .
Ok , there’s your trivia for today .

Lucano on October 4, 2012 at 10:54 AM

There is no “if”. Kuwait is not part of the United States. We intervened, it makes no difference if the UN and Congress were for it.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Yes, we did. You can disagree with it, you can cite the major historical territorial problems in the region, and you can cite ancient history of intervention going back to Alexander.

I can cite those things, give you major dates and even some lovely personnel profiles of leaders from Patreus back to Alexander.

The US also had backing of NATO, KSA, Jordan and the Emirates, to name a few other entities involved.

I prefer wars that are short, hard, nasty, decisive and then helping the civil population to rebuild and let them know that it was their damned government that we went against. In cases like Germany there also has to be a cultural recognition of problems, but the US didn’t do that in Iraq. The US spent years in war torn Europe and a decade in Japan after WWII, and I’m under no illusion of what the costs of warfare are both in war and in peace. Cease-fires tend to cause more problems than they solve, especially with brutal dictators involved (ex. the Magical Kingdom of the Kims and Saddam Hussein).

On the flip side there have been military interventions in the other direction starting with Hittite allies infringing on trading partners and getting a little tussle at Ilios down through the Persian Empire and the Ottomans who did their best to interfere in the West by subjugating it. These people had their own problems with the Mongols from farther East, but then everyone had them as a problem since they were part of a larger migration of peoples that started thousands of years earlier.

Even worse from this region is the problem of piracy which is Private War, which has been something traceable to the Hittite archives, the walls of late Greek City States, Egypt under multiple Pharoahs… all the way to the MB and its piratical groups we call ‘terrorists’. Be they State endorsed or just purely private they surely ‘intervene’ on a regional to now global scale. Unfortunately these unregulated war groups aim to bring down civilization by their means and methods. At least with Nation State interventions you can get regularized warfare… that Private stuff is a threat to all mankind.

Complain and dislike interventions as you will, they are the stuff of history going back to the beginning of mankind and recorded history. I am all for less of it, don’t get me wrong, but this is not a distinctively American problem. Once war starts the idea is to end it in victory, not drag it out and offer up more bloodshed for years on end. Pacifist Nations tend to be isolated and have little of value in them… and they still get enemies and don’t last long without a military machine. Too bad diplomacy can’t solve these ills, huh? Too bad dictators see small neighbors as prey, huh? Too bad diplomacy of backing a small Nation means that we actually have to decide what we will do when it is invaded. Yet isolationism is a failure, as well.

Remedies for this are being accepted at the highest levels.

Instead of complaining, perhaps offering suggestions of how NOT to get into these circumstances when trade depends on small Nations is in order.

ajacksonian on October 4, 2012 at 11:09 AM

Russia already sees this danger, and wants Assad to apologize immediately to defuse the situation:

Interesting. I wish we had as much prescience on OUR foreign policy as regards the Middle East as the Ruskies are showing.

Cleombrotus on October 4, 2012 at 11:30 AM

I agree, except that with Turkey being a member of NATO, our having military bases in Turkey, and our having nuclear weapons based in Turkey, I am not convinced that we are not involved.

Dante on October 4, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Where are these weapons located Ankara, Izmir or Incirlik.

RickB on October 4, 2012 at 11:39 AM

We should be VERY wary about getting in bed with the neo-Ottoman Turks. The same entangling alliances that oblige us to fight their enemies in Syria should they declare war can and likely will be used against Israel and or Saudi Arabia if and when the precedent is set.

abobo on October 4, 2012 at 9:29 AM

We’re already in bed with them.

Pablo on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

…or worse yet, an Islamist regime that will bridge the gap between Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and Iranian mullahs. The latter is a concern for NATO and the West, or at least it should be. Considering the drift of Turkey’s government towards Islamist politics, even a Turkish occupation under NATO’s umbrella would spell trouble for all sides.

What do you mean by “bridge the gap”? The Muslim Brotherhood is a Sunni Jihad group, and the Iranian mullahs are Shia. That is not going to bridge anything except lead to a Islamic war. The mullahs are backing Assad for a reason and the insurgents, or the opposition, is Sunni. The Brotherhood cannot keep their credibility for long if they are seen as trying to befriend a Shia Jihadist state like Iran, if their Sunni jihadist brothers are being killed by Iranian backed forces, which include Hezbollah. It is going to put Hamas is a real pickle too, which mean they are going to have to come out against Iran as well if they want to keep their cred as Sunni warriors.

Here are some of the possible conflicts that will evolve out of this (several can take place at once in multiple countries):

(1) Shia (Iran, Hezbollah) vs. Sunni (Muslim Brotherhood, AQ, too many to count)

(2) Turks vs. Kurds

(3) Turks vs. Arabs

(4) Turks vs. Iranians

(5) Arabs vs. Iranians

(6) Kurds vs. Arabs

(7) Kurds vs. Iranians

Plus you can add possible interventions by the Russians into this as well. This is a conflict that we need to stay out of. Just do the very least under our NATO obligations, which might mean intelligence, or supplying some weapons, moral and some technical support to the Turks. etc., but that is it. The truth is Turkey, as much I don’t trust or really like them, do have a military that could crush everyone in the region except Israel and the possible intervention of Russia. They really don’t need our help.

William Eaton on October 4, 2012 at 11:53 AM

To hell with them both. Neither is an ally of America.
Turkey is a titular member of NATO, simply a useful buffer.
Recall, if you will, that Turkey refused to allow the 4th Infantry Div. to shoot south from Turkey down the Western border of Iraq – during which time we could have intercepted convoys of cash and probably “WMDs”.
Screw ‘m both. The Euros don’t want Turkey and WE should wake up.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on October 4, 2012 at 11:54 AM

Turkey has already declared an offensive war against Syria by helping the Syrian rebels. If Turkey finds itself in a war as a result NATO should stay the heck out of it.

FloatingRock on October 4, 2012 at 12:14 PM

Before the Presidential debate on foreign policy occurs Obama will launch a drone/cruise missile attack on some purported alQaeda base in Libya.

albill on October 4, 2012 at 12:47 PM

The Syrians killed 2 women and 3 little girls when they lobbed that missile into a housing area.

I hope the Turks crush them.

karenhasfreedom on October 4, 2012 at 9:30 AM

That’s a lot less than all the Kurds the Turks have killed and a whole lot less than the 2,000,000 Armenian Christians the Turks brutally murdered.

VorDaj on October 4, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Turkey is getting serious about become the counter-weight to Iran in the region. Taking on the mad ophthalmologist is a direct assault on Iran’s influence in the region. Their timing was impeccable as Iran is undergoing massive internal strife as their currency plummets.

Interesting times.

MJBrutus on October 4, 2012 at 5:23 PM

You keep saying NATO; but what your really mean is USA. Please correct. I laid out why Libya was going to be attacked by an unconstituional US war-fighting force. Syria does not fit the perfect variables that Libya was.

It’s up to the peoples…as is ALWAYS the case, always.

John Kettlewell on October 4, 2012 at 6:03 PM

That’s a lot less than all the Kurds the Turks have killed and a whole lot less than the 2,000,000 Armenian Christians the Turks brutally murdered.

VorDaj on October 4, 2012 at 1:53 PM

People need to keep this in mind before cheering on the Turks. If they wanna go after Syria and/or Iran, peachy, but we should stay the hell out of it.

MelonCollie on October 4, 2012 at 7:07 PM