Two car bombs kill 20 or more in Turkey near Syrian border

posted at 11:31 am on May 11, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Two car bombs blasted a Turkish town near the Syrian border today, killing 20 or more people and injuring scores more. Turkey has a pretty good idea who’s behind it even before they start an investigation:

Twin car bombs killed at least 20 people near Turkey’s border with Syria on Saturday, increasing fears that Syria’s civil war was dragging in neighbors and drawing a swift warning from Ankara not to test its resolve.

Turkey supports the uprising against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said it was no coincidence the attacks in the town of Reyhanli came as diplomatic moves to end the conflict intensify.

“There may be those who want to sabotage Turkey’s peace, but we will not allow that,” Davutoglu told reporters during a trip to Berlin. “No-one should attempt to test Turkey’s power, our security forces will take all necessary measures.”

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

NATO member Turkey has been one of Assad’s harshest critics and has harbored both Syrian refugees and rebels during the uprising against him, now in its third year.

NBC’s Richard Engel says that Turkey will start with the presumption that the Assad regime set up the attacks as a warning to quit interfering in its civil war:

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

The timing would tend to suggest that as a possibility:

Erdogan said this week that Turkey would support a U.S.-enforced no-fly zone in Syria and warned that Damascus crossed President Barack Obama’s “red line” on chemical weapons use long ago.

A no-fly zone to prohibit Syrian military aircraft from hitting rebel targets has been mentioned by American lawmakers as one option the United States could use to pressure Assad.

Erdogan is due to meet Obama in Washington on May 16.

Well, maybe — but that kind of provocation would make this a self-fulfilling prophecy.  Turkey is a member of NATO, whose operational doctrine has always been that an attack on one member is an attack on all members.  Barack Obama is already under a lot of pressure to increase American intervention in Syria; attacking Turkey will make that pressure all but irresistible.  Maybe Assad thinks that Western intervention will galvanize Syrian nationalism and unite his country under his banner to repel the infidels, but that didn’t work out too well for Moammar Qaddafi.

Of course, that didn’t work out to well for us, either, or any of the other NATO nations that took part in the 30,000-foot Libyan intervention.  The Washington Post caught up last night to the dire situation in Tripoli as the successor government can’t even clear its own capital streets of the Islamist “militias,” and the bug-out for which we are all preparing:

Growing concerns over protests roiling Libya prompted the State Department to begin evacuating some diplomats from Tripoli, as the Pentagon put troops stationed at nearby European bases on high alert. …

The protests that have spread in Libya over the past week stem largely from the passage of a law that bars from public office officials who served in key roles under the deposed Libyan regime of Moammar Gaddafi. There is no indication so far that the demonstrators are targeting Westerners.

Still, a senior defense official said a Marine quick-response team and a Special Operations unit have been placed on alert to ensure that they can respond if they are needed to evacuate personnel. The nearest U.S. troops are stationed in Spain and Italy. …

The State Department said in a statement that it has ordered the departure of a handful of ­“non-essential” personnel from Tripoli as a result of the “unsettled situation,” which includes mass protests outside government facilities.

Actually, the militias have been surrounding government buildings in Tripoli for more than two weeks, with only a one-day respite on May 5th.  Don’t expect the US or the UK to be in Libya for much longer at all to celebrate the liberation that allowed terrorist networks to seize control of this Mediterranean nation, and don’t expect anything different as an outcome in Syria from another 30,000-foot intervention.

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smart power + Arab spring =unmitigated disaster.

rob verdi on May 11, 2013 at 11:38 AM

BHO “Nothing to see here. Move along.”

I have no love loss for the Turks. However they are still a foothold in that sector.

Molonlabe2004 on May 11, 2013 at 11:38 AM

We should arrest that muslim video dude asap. Wait….what?

VegasRick on May 11, 2013 at 11:40 AM

“leading from his behind”.

VegasRick on May 11, 2013 at 11:41 AM

Loud blast heard near New Nazimabad Gate in Karachi, Pakistan; no immediate reports of casualties – @RT_com

6 mins ago from rt.com by editor

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/pakistan-parliamentary-elections-2013
====

http://rt.com/news/pakistan-election-day-bombing-136/

canopfor on May 11, 2013 at 11:42 AM

Let’s not jump to any conclusions.

It was probably lone wolves.

profitsbeard on May 11, 2013 at 11:42 AM

BHO “Nothing to see here. Move along.”

I have no love loss for the Turks. However they are still a foothold in that sector.

Molonlabe2004 on May 11, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Love the nic.

VegasRick on May 11, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Could be Iran and/or hezblahblah doing this too, without the knowledge of Assad. Iran is desperately trying to hold on to its little empire.

slickwillie2001 on May 11, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Who else might have an interest in fomenting armed conflict between Turkey and Syria? Islamist Syrian “rebels” maybe?

farsighted on May 11, 2013 at 11:45 AM

Why does the Tea Party hate Turks?

Arnold Yabenson on May 11, 2013 at 11:47 AM

From the NY Times, Feb 25, 2012: Syrian Conflict Poses Risk of Regional Strife.

From CNN, Oct 11, 2012: As U.N. falters, Syria’s conflict threatens regional stability.

From the Telegraph UK, 5 days ago: Israel attacks show Syria’s conflict becoming a regional proxy war.

Thank goodness the U.S. has the smartest man in the room and all his smart power at our disposal, or this could get serious.

locomotivebreath1901 on May 11, 2013 at 11:47 AM

Syrian President Assad’s government are the ‘usual suspects’ behind car bombs in Turkey that killed 40 people, Turkish deputy PM says – @Reuters

43 mins ago by editor

Turkish NTV television quotes minister saying death toll in explosion in Turkey is around 40 – @AP

1 hour ago from bigstory.ap.org by editor
==============================================

http://www.breakingnews.com/topic/turkey-syria-tensions

canopfor on May 11, 2013 at 11:49 AM

smart power + Arab spring =unmitigated disaster.

rob verdi on May 11, 2013 at 11:38 AM

“Unmitigated disaster” describes everything the incompetent in chief does.

If the Turks think Assad did this, they will retaliate.

dogsoldier on May 11, 2013 at 11:50 AM

As we speak The State Department is scouring YouTube for the culprit. Or some patsy at least.

motionview on May 11, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Pretty sure it was work place violence.

Alabama Infidel on May 11, 2013 at 11:59 AM

Who else might have an interest in fomenting armed conflict between Turkey and Syria? Islamist Syrian “rebels” maybe?

farsighted on May 11, 2013 at 11:45 AM

Exactly. Last night on the QOTD thread I posted a link that reported that our ambassador to Syria met with Syrian rebels near the Turkish border to pass along some aid. Who are these rebels anyway? More AlQaeda sympathizers?

Erdogan has moved Turkey from its secularism to Islamization. Is the Obysmal administration foreign policy helping to spread the caliphate in the region?

The “Arab Spring” is Obysmal’s sell out to his Muslim “brothers.”

onlineanalyst on May 11, 2013 at 12:01 PM

The Obama policy on Libya was a horrid mess from the start. As I have written before, the Obama/Clinton policy was an ill-thought-out one driven by the needs of the Europeans and not by US interests. When Qaddafy was a threat, some twenty-five to thirty years ago, and Reagan acted against it, the Europeans and the US liberals were aghast. The French did not even give us permission to fly through their airspace to hit Libya. Once Bush, yes, Bush of the “W” variety, disarmed Qaddafy–remember that Qaddafy gave up his nuclear program, allowed the US to cart it away, and became our collaborator against Al Qaeda when he saw the fate of Saddam–then the liberals and the European left began to insist on Qaddafy’s removal. The Europeans were upset that Qaddafy did not give them special oil concessions and, in fact, preferred to do business with American companies. He was, as I have written before, like an old repentant Mafia chieftain trying to score some points with the FBI. I have personal experience working with Qaddafy’s officials against AQ targets.

Obama, of course, listened to the Europeans, something you should never do except if it involves brewing a good cup of coffee, and we have disaster unleashed in North Africa. Our policy has created an arc of instability in the Magreb, reaching all the way to Cairo, and heading for Syria. We made North Africa safe for AQ and affiliates.

That is the Truth we will not likely hear at these hearings. That is the reason that the Obama people went so far out of the path of truth to cover up the Benghazi disaster. They could not admit that it was their foreign policy, not some obscure video made in the California desert, that killed our people in Benghazi. This would not have happened had Qaddafy been in power. Period.

http://thediplomad.blogspot.com/2013/05/the-battle-of-benghazi-still-not.html

Blake on May 11, 2013 at 12:24 PM

Has the film maker who is responsible been identified yet?

MPan on May 11, 2013 at 12:24 PM

So would this be WWIV or WWV??

redguy on May 11, 2013 at 12:33 PM

Has the film maker who is responsible been identified yet?

MPan on May 11, 2013 at 12:24 PM

Amen brother!!!

redguy on May 11, 2013 at 12:34 PM

Thank goodness the U.S. has the smartest man in the room and all his smart power at our disposal, or this could get serious.

locomotivebreath1901 on May 11, 2013 at 11:47 AM

It’s all Muslim on Muslim – let them get after it….

Israel can take advantage of this and keep taking out strategic targets….

The last thing we need is Obozo stopping the Muslim bloodletting with American lives….

Isn’t that what the left kept telling George Bush???

redguy on May 11, 2013 at 12:36 PM

Just a recollection on Rubio’s
Cheer leading jumping into Libya with Barry and Co. My other bone to pick.

Sarah and LTC West..I agreed with their take.
Watching it all play out..like a horror film,Barry and friends directed.
SP:
http://www.therightscoop.com/sarah-palin-on-the-future-of-libya/

bazil9 on May 11, 2013 at 12:45 PM

As we speak The State Department is scouring YouTube for the culprit. Or some patsy at least.

motionview on May 11, 2013 at 11:53 AM

Or producing/doctoring one of its own to promote its talking points-propaganda.

onlineanalyst on May 11, 2013 at 12:56 PM

It’s just gangs establishing their turf and picking out their colors.

docflash on May 11, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Actually, the militias have been surrounding government buildings in Tripoli for more than two weeks, with only a one-day respite on May 5th.

LOL – even the jihadis can’t resist the chicas that come out on cinco de mayo.

abobo on May 11, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Great points and link, Blake.

The whole Obysmal administration is guilty of betrayal.
http://www.nationalreview.com/article/347896/obama%E2%80%99s-betrayal-islamic-democracy

Magariaf spoke the truth about the attack, and this administration undermined him.

Does the Obysmal administration wish to repeat its failures in Syria? Let’s ask Valerie Jarrett, who is orchestrating so much of the ME policy.

onlineanalyst on May 11, 2013 at 1:02 PM

What You Tube video could hath wrought such havoc?!

mjbrooks3 on May 11, 2013 at 1:03 PM

Still, a senior defense official said a Marine quick-response team and a Special Operations unit have been placed on alert to ensure that they can respond if they are needed to evacuate personnel.

To the date, exactly 8 months too late.

hillsoftx on May 11, 2013 at 1:05 PM

Actually, the militias have been surrounding government buildings in Tripoli for more than two weeks, with only a one-day respite on May 5th.

LOL – even the jihadis can’t resist the chicas that come out on cinco de mayo.

abobo on May 11, 2013 at 1:01 PM

Them Libyans love them the salsa dance.

hillsoftx on May 11, 2013 at 1:07 PM

Madame Pelosi thinks (well, she doesn’t really think) that the Republicans are obsessed with the Benghazi attack when there are far more “important issues” to tackle. Issues like gay marriage, gun control, and illegals’ amnesty, Nancy?

http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/299177-pelosi-knocks-gop-obsession-with-benghazi-

onlineanalyst on May 11, 2013 at 1:16 PM

GWB’s fault, certainly.

Schadenfreude on May 11, 2013 at 1:50 PM

…… a senior defense official said a Marine quick-response team and a Special Operations unit have been placed on alert to ensure that they can respond if they are needed to evacuate personnel.

If only we had proper Intel telling us something might be happening, or an anniversary of an important date was coming up, we could have been prepared the last time the situation in Libya got this dangerous.

questionmark on May 11, 2013 at 2:01 PM

So let me get this straight.

Less than 24 hours and we have all this information about car bombs that killed 20 in Turkey.

The Boston Marathon bombing took the better part of five days and endless lectures from the filthy rat-eared coward about not jumping to conclusions before we found out that it was the usual suspects who committed that act of terror.

We have yet to have this level of clarity about Benghazi.

What is wrong with this picture?

Happy Nomad on May 11, 2013 at 3:59 PM

as the Pentagon put troops stationed at nearby European bases on high alert.

Golly, that would have been handy about, ohhhhhhh… 8 months ago to the day?

GWB on May 11, 2013 at 4:39 PM

Sarah Palin, of course.

tom daschle concerned on May 11, 2013 at 4:56 PM

…I too think this is all because of a despicable unauthorized video!
…the birds of Arab Spring are chirping!

KOOLAID2 on May 11, 2013 at 5:08 PM

Just a recollection on Rubio’s
Cheer leading jumping into Libya with Barry and Co. My other bone to pick.

bazil9 on May 11, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Rubio pushed and pushed for Obama to do even more to help the Libyan “Rebels” so he to has Benghazi Blood on his hands. He is dead wrong on both the main ‘issues’ facing America – Islam and Illegal “immigration”.

VorDaj on May 11, 2013 at 5:21 PM

…the birds of Arab Spring are chirping!

KOOLAID2 on May 11, 2013 at 5:08 PM

And they are angry birds so we can put game producers in jail next time the rat-eared coward needs a scapegoat.

Happy Nomad on May 11, 2013 at 5:21 PM

Turkey is a member of NATO, whose operational doctrine has always been that an attack on one member is an attack on all members.

Would Erdogan bomb his own people in order to secure NATO intervention in Syria? Unless our own FBI concludes Assad did it, be wary.

exdeadhead on May 11, 2013 at 9:13 PM