Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
October 20, 2014

Pressured Turkey Accomodates Some Support For Kobane

The U.S. is getting trapped in its support for the Kurds in Kobane while Turkey's Erdogan, for unknown reasons, seems to making a u-turn in his anti-Kurdish position.

Just yesterday the Turkish president Erdogan said that no weapons should be given to the YPK/PPK fighters defending Kobane, near to Turkish Syrian border, against the onslaught by Islamic State fighters:

Turkey wouldn't agree to any U.S. arms transfers to Kurdish fighters who are battling Islamic militants in Syria, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was quoted as saying Sunday, as the extremist group fired more mortar rounds near the Syrian-Turkish border.
...
"The PYD is for us, equal to the PKK. It is a terror organization," Erdogan told a group of reporters on his return from a visit to Afghanistan.

Obama, just after another phonecall with Erdogan on Sunday, showed him the finger and a few hours later U.S. air force planes dropped weapons for the PKK fighters in Kobane.

This was against a new U.S. law which allows U.S. weapon transfers only to "appropriately vetted" anti-IS fighters. Turkey, the U.S. and the EU see the PKK, and the associated YPK in Syria, as terrorists. So who has now vetted these folks?

Obama's excuse is the claim that these weapons were donated by the Kurdish government in Iraq's Kurdish areas (KRG). They are, technically, not U.S. weapons but as the Washington Post remarked:

Much of the material, however, had been at least indirectly provided to the Iraqi Kurds by the United States and coalition allies.

Erdogan had earlier set three conditions for the supporting the Kurds in Syria. They should fight against the Syrian government under the command of the Turkish supported (fictitious) Free Syrian Army, stop striving for any autonomous areas and suspend any action against the Turkish government. His demands towards the U.S. were support for the overthrow of the Syrian government, creation of a no-fly zone over Syria and the creation of a secured border zone on Syrian ground. The U.S. had rejected those demands.

But the Kurds in northern Syria now seem to have, at least verbally, moved towards some accommodation of Erdogan's demands. In a statement released by them they say:

The resistance shown by our units YPG and the factions of the free Syrian army is a guarantee for defeating ISIS terrorism in the region. Counter-terrorism and building a free and democratic Syria was the basis for the agreements signed with factions of the free Syrian Army. As we can see that the success of the revolution are subject to the development of this relationship between all factions and the forces of good in this country.
...
We will work to consolidate the concept of true partnership for the management of this country commensurate with the aspirations of the Syrian people with all its components, sects and social classes.

One might guess that each side will read whatever it will into this statement.

Turkey still rejects any support for the YPK/PKK but has now agreed to allow Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters from its allies in north Iraqi under president Barzani to pass through Turkey into Kobane.

"It will be very wrong for America with whom we are allied and who we are together with in NATO to expect us to say 'yes' (to supporting the PYD) after openly announcing such support for a terrorist organization," Erdogan said.
...
Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told a news conference that Turkey was facilitating the passage of Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga forces which have also fought Islamic State when the militants attacked the Kurds' autonomous region in Iraq over the summer. He gave no details.

Syrian Kurds who had fled from Kobane to Turkey and who support the fighters will not be allowed to return to Syria but Iraqi Kurds will now be allowed to do just that. The deal was arranged by KRG intelligence chief Lahur Talabani. Turkey may hope that the Peshmerga, who are internal Kurdish enemies of the Marxist PKK, may take the lead in the fight against the Islamic State and diminish the PKK influence on this issue. It is not clear if the YPK/PKK fighters will welcome such Peshmerga support.

It is difficult to find out what really happened in this Turkish u-turn. There was either a deal behind this whole and astonishing Turkish turnaround or Obama's weapon drop over Kobane has finally forced Erdogan into a more accommodating position. Or maybe the attempted kidnapping of a Turkish supported insurgent commander by the Islamic State played a role.

Meanwhile U.S. Secretary of State Kerry, who only last week said that Kobane had no strategic relevance, is lauding the "valiantly fighting" PKK in Kobane:

"It would be irresponsible of us, as well morally very difficult, to turn your back on a community fighting ISIL as hard as it is at this particular moment," he said.

For weeks the U.S. did not help in Kobane. Only after much publicity documented the fighting did the U.S. intervene. Only after pressure from domestic opposition did the U.S. intensify its bombing against the Islamic State in Kobane. Now Obama is in a trap. He can not let the city fall without loss of face and without receiving vicious attacks from the republicans in Congress. This while the attack on Kobane is most likely only a diversion created by the Islamic State to draw away those U.S. resources which could hinder its consolidation in the Iraqi Anbar province.

Posted by b on October 20, 2014 at 14:21 UTC | Permalink

Comments

Don't miss the last sentence. Kobane is a masterful feint by ISIL to draw US military assets away from its main objective.
This while the attack on Kobane is most likely only a diversion created by the Islamic State to draw away those U.S. resources which could hinder its consolidation in the Iraqi Anbar province.
news report:
ISIL fighters are continuing their offensive in Anbar province and are pushing closer towards Baghdad, stoking fears the government isn't doing enough to protect the capital and its people. The government insists it's ready to face any challenge it faces, despite a sharp rise in suicide bombings and attacks.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20 2014 14:37 utc | 1

The web of lies he's weaved is ensnaring Obama, which is a good thing.

Posted by: karlof1 | Oct 20 2014 15:13 utc | 2

"… another phonecall with Erdogan on Sunday, showed him the finger"

Well done Mr. President, it was about time! I suspect all your neocon advisers voted against …

ISIL Militants In Swap for Turkish Hostages
Sultan Erdogan: Turkey's Rebranding Into the New, Old Ottoman Empire

Posted by: Oui | Oct 20 2014 15:14 utc | 3

Obama has a short finger. Hurriyet:

The United States told Turkey that a U.S. military air-drop of arms to Syrian Kurds battling Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) near the Syrian town of Kobane was a response to a crisis situation and did not represent a change in U.S. policy, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Oct. 20.

"We talked with Turkish authorities - I did, the president did, to make it very very clear that this is not a shift in policy by the United States. It is crisis moment, an emergency," Kerry told reporters on a visit to Indonesia, adding that it was a "momentary effort."

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20 2014 15:29 utc | 4

"Shim had said she was among the few journalists who had obtained stories about Takfiri militants’ infiltration into Syria through the Turkish border, adding she had gained access to images showing militants crossing the border in trucks belonging to the World Food Organization and other NGOs."

Now she's dead. One day after Turkey accused her of spying.

http://www.presstv.com/detail/2014/10/20/382940/turkey-refuses-to-name-shim-death-suspect/

Posted by: TikTok | Oct 20 2014 15:32 utc | 5

Shim, an American citizen of Lebanese descent working for PressTV on a mission on the Turkish side of the border. Turkey accused her of spying.
Carl Bernstein: More than 400 American journalists in the past twenty‑five years have secretly carried out assignments for the Central Intelligence Agency, according to documents on file at CIA headquarters.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20 2014 16:38 utc | 6

B, do you agree or disagree that this agreement means Syrian Kurds have signed up for regime change duties, like angryarab and some others are saying.

Posted by: Crest | Oct 20 2014 17:12 utc | 7

"Bush administration responsible for mess in Iraq". Surprise, surprise ..........

http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2014/10/blame-bush-admin-for-isis/

The article contains a lot of links.

Posted by: Willy2 | Oct 20 2014 17:42 utc | 8

Obama needs to put pressure on Turkey to help us in the Middle east. Biden and Kerry needs to go over and visit them


Chris
Owner CEL Financial Services
Please visit my website for all your Income Tax Santa Paula needs.

Posted by: ChrisM | Oct 20 2014 18:06 utc | 9

@Crest B, do you agree or disagree that this agreement means Syrian Kurds have signed up for regime change duties, like angryarab and some others are saying.

The agreement lets everything open. The formulation above is as I said ambivalent; "the Syrian people with all its components, sects and social classes." That includes the Alawites and others and includes the current government.

Posted by: b | Oct 20 2014 18:31 utc | 10

As I recall, Assad was complicit in a Kurdish autonomous zone in the north before the Islamists gained precedence, so I would be surprised if the Syria Kurds went for regime change. Why would they favor something that would hurt their status?

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20 2014 18:55 utc | 11

As a commenter on the Guardian said (I recognise her contribution: username of Lucilla Drusilla), Erdogan is buddies with Barzani. That's why the choice of the KRG Kurds, rather than PKK.

It's a slide sideways, in order to satisfy intense American pressure.

In any case, the battle in Kobani is already over and no longer an issue. According to our contributors, including Don, the ISIS tactic is feint and strike. If you don't succeed straight away, go elsewhere.

The day before yesterday, apart from the American bombardment, there was an intense ISIS artillery bombardment, not repeated today. I should think it was intended to cover the withdrawal of the ISIS fighters.

Better to go elsewhere, rather than waste lives on a Stalingrad.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 20 2014 21:49 utc | 12

As has already been suggested (by Don, I think), the attack on Kobani may have have been a cover for attacks elsewhere. While it sounds to me that Kobani may have been an opportunistic attack, not important, I can see the significance of the moves forward in al-Anbar. ISIS are close to having the capability of closing Baghdad International Airport, a vast success. OK, the Apaches can be retreated onto the helipads of the Green Zone. But things will not be looking good.

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 20 2014 22:15 utc | 13

Regarding Baghdad, I once commented that an ISIL attack would be countered at least by Iran, and another reader suggested that it wouldn't be a conventional attack, it would be done with car bombs, etc. and now I think he was correct on the city itself. The airport might be a different matter, but the people actually on the ground will figure it out on both offense and defense. Full flight schedule tomorrow (Tuesday) at Baghdad International.

Laguerre, did you ever catch my article on a subject we discussed once, the origins of the Sunni/Shiite divide?

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20 2014 22:45 utc | 14

@6 I don't quite see the point of attaching the second part to the first.

How many of those CIA reporters have been murdered, I wonder?

The fact is the Turkey, NATO member in good standing, is well known as the world's number one jailer of journalists. It is no stretch to imagine that the Turkish security services would murder some of these journalists as well. They're long used to running a brutal, death squad war against their citizens.

I think there is plenty of reason to think that she is a) innocent of being a spy and b) victim of a heinous murder that, if it took place anywhere else, would be the subject of much "serious" grandstanding by the US State Department.

Posted by: guest77 | Oct 20 2014 22:58 utc | 15

@10 don bacon

This story is a tad aged but it does have good info on the kurdish autonomy issue you raised and the plight of the Assyrians. Some here at moa probably have seen already but I'm gonna post link anyway.
http://www.aina.org/releases/20130819193827.htm


Posted by: really | Oct 20 2014 23:34 utc | 16

Fuck, the last effort disappeared (my own fault).

The point I wanted to make was that the current issue is the Baghdad airport. ISIS cannot take Baghdad city, but ISIS are almost within range of closing Baghdad International. Abu Ghraib is 13k's from the airport. ISIS don't have Abu Ghraib yet, but they may do. Or they may have artillery or rockets capable of 13-20 km, not difficult.

The loss of function of the airport will have a big effect. Ok the Apaches can retreat to the helipads of the Green Zone

Posted by: Laguerre | Oct 20 2014 23:53 utc | 17

McClatchy, Oct 3

“Daash is openly operating inside Abu Ghraib,” according to an Iraqi soldier, who used a common Arabic term for the Islamic State. “I was at the 10th Division base there two days ago, and the soldiers cannot leave or patrol,” he said, asking that he be identified only as Hossam because Iraqi soldiers are barred from speaking with foreign reporters. “Daash controls the streets.”

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 0:49 utc | 18

From RT:http://rt.com/news/197532-turkey-kurds-isis-kobani/

Posted by: ben | Oct 21 2014 0:58 utc | 19

Maybe it's a deal : Turkey lets all the Kurds into Kobane, the US then bombs them and the city to smithereens. Turkey and the US blame it all on the US' ISIS ... which is meanwhile setting up at Baghdad airport a la the US' neonazis at Donetsk, proceeding to shell civilians and to venture "out at night and engaging in murders, kidnappings/abductions, rapes, assassinations, and sabotage"?

The history of the US and the Kurds is one of consistent abuse and betrayal.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 21 2014 1:38 utc | 20


Good post from Viktor Titov on Neo http://journal-neo.org/2014/10/20/rus-kto-stoit-za-islamskim-gosudarstvom-kuda-dvizhetsya-konflikt-na-blizhnem-vostoke/
(excerpt)
"...ISIS is going to strike southern Iraq with its rich reserves of oil and gas and then Baghdad since, after all, it was the capital of the Arabian caliphate. The next stop of ISIS militants will be Kuwait and the eastern regions of Saudi Arabia, rich in oil, and their final destination is Qatar and the UAE. Saudi intelligence services have finally figured it out, though it’s too late now, that it is easier for the United States to control the flow of hydrocarbons of the entire Persian Gulf from one centre, even if it is governed by the Islamic State, than to engage in complicated political games with a number of large regional players – Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Iran, the UAE, Kuwait and Qatar. And the fight has clearly begun."

Posted by: farflungstar | Oct 21 2014 2:29 utc | 21

What is happening in Iraq and Syria right now is very difficult to understand. Just too many unknowns for us mortals who attempt to deduce patterns from the outside. Though it is clear that those on the inside of the US government also do not understand what they are doing. I usually have a clear picture of what is going on in the world (though will admit that many of my clear pictures have turned out to be wrong in the past) today there are some major puzzles. To name a few:

Turkey. What is Turkey trying to accomplish by using its territory to engage in war on Syria? For the last three years that has looked like a policy that has way too many negative consequences to justify the possible benefits. The first negative was that the Syrian Kurdish region has become independent of the Syrian government. There is no way that the Turks could consider that a positive. Second, the ISIS forces Turkey supported in Syria have joined the rebellion in Iraq. This has directly resulted in de facto independence of the Iraqi Kurdish region. Again, there is no way the Turks can consider this a positive. As this thread points out, the Turks seem to have been forced to let the Iraqi Kurds traverse Turkish territory to join the Syrian Kurds in Kabane to fight ISIS. This is doubly not in the interest of the Turks (allowing the formation of a bigger Kurdish alliance that will be used to fight ISIS which is a formation that Turkey helped create in the first place).

Saudi Arabia. They have been supporting ISIS in Syria for over three years now. Today they are being forced to join an alliance that is designed to defeat ISIS. WTF were they thinking of in the first place? Today we hear much speculation that ISIS is interested in undermining the Saudi regime itself.

United States. Ever since we made the decision to use NATO to topple Khadaffi in Libya and then to support the Islamic fundamentalist in Syria to topple Assad, the US has been lurching from on crisis to the next without any apparent strategic plan. There is absolutely none. What we were doing 18 months ago was reversed 12 months ago and what we are doing today is at odds with what we were trying to accomplish 6 months back. We are not just creating chaos in the ME but are policies are totally incoherent and chaotic. The Bush admin will be seen as having a well thought out foreign policy compared to the mess created by Obama, Clinton and Kerry.

The Russians and Chinese must be sitting back and taking a nice breath of relief -- whatever aggressive policies directed against them over the last few years have now been sidetracked by a total mess in the ME. Soon the US will be begging the Russians to help finding a diplomatic solution with Iraq and Syria.

The big puzzle remains: What did the US, Saudi Arabia and Turkey think they were going to accomplish trying to overthrow Assad?

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 21 2014 5:10 utc | 22

William Blum, of Killing Hope fame, asks if ANYTHING we hear about ISIS is true?
http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/10/17/why-you-cant-believe-nary-a-word-you-read-about-isis/

...and forgets to mention that ISIS reared its ugly/evil head when Obama had decided it was time for (pro-American) regime change in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 21 2014 6:24 utc | 23

@Hoarsewhisperer #22:

Obama doesn't decide anything. He's just a figurehead who gives a "multicultural" face to the Empire. The only occasion in which I detected that Obama had some kind of participation in a decision making process was getting David Petraeus to resign from his position as CIA director. Obama bore a grudge against Petraeus, since Petraeus and a few other generals used leaks to force Obama into ordering a "surge" of US troops in Afghanistan.

Obama's whole career is based on not taking a stand on anything. The reason he was chosen as editor of the Harvard Law Review is that he was neither for critical legal studies nor against it. Thus, he became the only Harvard Law Review editor to have never published an article in a law review.

Do we have an old troll in new clothing? Personal attacks do nothing to advance a discussion, unless one is dealing with a troll. (b said not to feed the troll if he returns with a new handle.)

Posted by: Demian | Oct 21 2014 9:49 utc | 24

Demian @ 24 said:

Personal attacks do nothing to advance a discussion, unless one is dealing with a troll.

in the previous thread Demian @ 38 said to ChipNikh, after falsely accusing him of using a non-existent word:

Drop too much acid as a young chimp?

thus throwing the first invective.

so look, you little fucking asswipe, if you wanna dish it out, you gotta eat it too. instead of running to mommy screaming, "TROLL, TROLL, TROLL"

Posted by: john | Oct 21 2014 10:28 utc | 25

Obama doesn't decide anything.
...
Posted by: Demian | Oct 21, 2014 5:49:17 AM | 24

We agree on that.
"Obama" is one of several brief euphemisms I use to avoid having to type...

"The wholly-owned subsidiary of the 1% known as the Government of the United States of America" (when referring to the fascist criminal conspiracy known as the USG).

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 21 2014 12:04 utc | 26

Re Syrian Kurds
Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 20, 2014 2:55:04 PM | 10

If you've been tracking the timelines of the Syria 'uprising' you'll be able to confirm (or not) my recollection that Assad declared Syria's kurdish region independent soon after Mr 'no problems with neighbors' Erdogan became openly hostile toward Assad's Syria.

I remember that this independence was granted at a time when Assad was under pressure from outside, because Xymphora had a post suggesting that Assad play the independence card and I remember thinking it was a clever ploy (& also "That'll teach Obama's useful idiots to fuck with Assad!) AND that Assad actually followed through on the suggestion within a few days of Xymph's post.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Oct 21 2014 12:33 utc | 27

@GGT just post your comments and engage in civil discourse ... we can do without the personal attacks

Posted by: thirsty | Oct 21 2014 14:15 utc | 28

Of course Obama decides. That doesn't mean there aren't significant forces also involved. After all we in the USA live in the midst of systemic madness, criminality, failure. But a person, a President, is responsible for their own actions.

The Opologist meme whether Opolgy is ones intent or nay "he doesn't decide" reminds me of the I was just following orders defense.

Posted by: Eureka Springs | Oct 21 2014 14:21 utc | 29

Gough Whitlam, the Australian prime minister who was removed from office in an unusual move by the Governor General, who was close to the Americans and probably did so at their bigging, just died. His obituary was in the Washington Post today. This morning, Democracy Now! ran a segment on the Indonesian invasion of East Timor in the same year, 1975. They played a clip from an Australian journalist repoting the story on scene at the time. The juxtaposition of the two stories made me think of how the two stories were probably connected, so I looked up the chronology. Sure enough. Whitlam was removed from office on Nov. 11, 1975. East Timor declared its independence from Portugal at the end of November. On Dec. 5, Gerald Ford and Henry Kissinger visited Jakarta and gave Suharto a green light for invading East Timor. The next day, Indonesia invaded East Timor.

Posted by: lysias | Oct 21 2014 14:44 utc | 30

GG@30

I was enjoying your frenzied chatter and as much of your analysis as I could decipher among the trite insults but your simplistic use of the Yinon Plan to explain the Islamic State is weak and faulty logic.

The US, UK, Israel and even Iran have contributed to the goals of the Yinon Plan but the IS is the first viable force to confront that plan and attempt to unite the ME under one powerful leadership. You seem to be suffering, as are many others, from the lingering effects of 'Baghdadi Denial Syndrome'

I understand why some people chose this delusion because the reality of the situation is too hard to comprehend, Muslims forging their own destiny is just too much for exceptionalists to swallow.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Oct 21 2014 15:02 utc | 31

Toivos @ 21: What is happening in Iraq and Syria right now is very difficult to understand. Just too many unknowns for us mortals who attempt to deduce patterns from the outside. (…) What did the US, Saudi Arabia and Turkey think they were going to accomplish trying to overthrow Assad?

The info. from *the ground* is not solid enough to form even a hazy picture for me (which might be fanciful or erronous) of what is actually happening, independently of motives. Too many black holes.

All three had differing aims and followed the US lead / coercion. The aims may have changed somewhat over time, as reactions to ongoing and unintended events, shifting alliances in function of them. (See b’s top post, Erdogan’s turn about.) Even possible that pressure from the street plays a role.

In such a power vacuum, all kinds of competing interests come into play. These then fight it out in the halls of power, lame international meets, and on the phone, muddle about, may lose control of what is happening on the ground, struggle to keep up.

One interpretation, it is about control of the oil fields in the region. Now I have argued in the past (Afghanistan, Iraq) against such an interpretation, as the W, mostly US oil. cos. /other corps and affiliated were always against, they need a stable landscape and Gvmt (poodle for sure) to extract, refine, transport, sell, do their stuff. Iraq was not about taking over the oil fields, one need only look at the subsequent events.

When a region becomes so de-stabilized, lawless, impoverished, and ‘rebels’ grab ressources to fund ‘their’ take-over, uncertainty about the control of the controllers sets in, all becomes unstable, the agreed on commercial / banking / contracts /power schemas collapse, all goes South.

US bombing cuts ISIS oil production, business week

http://tinyurl.com/pcume3g

Map oil fields ISIS control, CNN sept.

http://tinyurl.com/kfasc7u

At some point (now, ISIS) the strategy of disruption and divide to rule, and clash of interests, cracks, backfires and creates new forces. Then everyone has to scramble to win on that pair of Aces.

Posted by: Noirette | Oct 21 2014 15:41 utc | 32

Erdogan's hopes that the YPG be destroyed by ISIS have failed as the USA is sending them weapons and the world community is outraged and suspicious at Turkey's indifference.
While Erdogan still refuses to allow Turkish Kurds to go to Kobani for good reason(They are all PKK sympathizers), he made a well mediatized 'magnanimous gesture' by allowing Iraqi Peshmergas opposed to the PKK to move into Kobani. He hopes they will finally weaken the YPG too close to the Syrian government and steal the glory of 'saving' Kobani.
I believe that the YPG will not welcome the Peshmergas they see too close to Turkey and may even fight against them in a Kurdish 'civil' war warmly encouraged by Erdogan. Will the YPG resist and end up feeling more Syrian than Kurdish?

Posted by: Virgile | Oct 21 2014 15:57 utc | 33

"...The big puzzle remains: What did the US, Saudi Arabia and Turkey think they were going to accomplish trying to overthrow Assad? "
Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 21, 2014 1:10:21 AM | 21

They wanted to stop this.

Posted by: really | Oct 21 2014 16:16 utc | 34

b it looks like ffs has reappeared as GGT who is now contaminating this thread.

Posted by: ToivoS | Oct 21 2014 16:23 utc | 35

IF ISIS are not involved with the Yinon Plan as some suggest, why would it be reported that Israel is treating ISIS members in its' hospitals? Not saying at all that this couldn't come back to bite them at some point.

https://socioecohistory.wordpress.com/2014/10/01/turkey-and-israel-are-directly-supporting-isis-and-al-qaeda-terrorists-in-syria/
http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2014/06/11/why_israel_is_tending_to_the_syrian_rebels_wounded

I do not pretend to know anymore than anyone else, but when in doubt, Cui bono? Certainly not all the Arabs being killed by other Arabs.

Posted by: Farflungstar | Oct 21 2014 16:41 utc | 36

@ lysias #35
Thank you for that. I've since researched Whitlam and you appear to be correct. One obituary on Whitlam was spongy: "...Although he made several references to self-determination [for East Timor, which is now independent], he seems not to have considered the consequences if the Timorese rejected incorporation. The evidence points to a lack of insistence on self-determination."

And then: "[Governor-General] Kerr's sacking of Whitlam's government on November 11, 1975, was proclaimed by Kerr's secretary, David Smith, who finished by asking God to save the Queen. "Well may we say 'God save the Queen' because nothing will save the governor-general," Whitlam responded.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 16:50 utc | 37

GG@38

You are oversimplifying again, GG. Exceptionalists believe they are better and smarter than anyone regardless of race although they may also be racist.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Oct 21 2014 17:05 utc | 38

@ GGT #45
Love that 2002 Iraq population density map, back when Iraq had only 24 million people. Let's see, has anything important happened in Iraq in twelve years?

Posted by: Don Bacon | Oct 21 2014 17:08 utc | 39

GGT @ 45 said:

When one actually checks a map of population density for Iraq and compares it to the CNN map one finds that no one actually lives in that area, (the one marked in light yellow on the CNN map)


uninhabited?

Posted by: john | Oct 21 2014 17:16 utc | 40

Ominous Sign!!!

Remember the beginning of the war in Afghanistan, the sudden embrace of RAWA. Seems like the U.S. has been groping for an opportunity to look to the world as doing truly benevolent. Taking the at-risk-of-death films RAWA had secretly put together about Taliban. Now we have the glorious YPG/PKK women fighters being lauded, even for suicide bombings.

I've loved these women for years, and now the world has fallen in love with them.

Creepy.

Posted by: Kim Sky | Oct 21 2014 17:42 utc | 41

Deleted all comments by troll GGT


SHOULD THIS TROLL COME BACK DO NOT FEED IT!!!

Posted by: b | Oct 21 2014 18:02 utc | 42

Unsurprisingly the weapons the US airdropped into Kobane(i)
Ended up in the hands of ISIS
Yawn= could see that one coming a mile away
The US arming ISIS to fight Syrian soldiers...
No accident.

absolutely intentional

Posted by: Penny | Oct 21 2014 19:27 utc | 43

As I expected, the YPG has rejected Erdogan's machiavelic plan of allowing the Peshmergas to get into Kobani just to crush the YPG and steal the credit of Kobani's liberation. It seems that the YPG will not fall into Erdogan's trap

VOA:
"But Syrian Kurdish leaders are now pushing back on the Turkish idea, saying it is not a done deal and they should have been consulted before the announcement.

In an interview with VOA, the spokesman for Kobani Kurds, Idriss Nassan, said Kobani Kurdish approval should have been secured first.

“From the beginning of these clashes we declared that any forces that want to come to Kobani to help in the resisting of Kobani there must be some coordination with the democratic autonomous administration because you know there is an administration, without the coordination its impossible to come to Kobani,” he said."

Posted by: Virgile | Oct 21 2014 19:46 utc | 44


Kobani Almost Completely Liberated From Islamic State Militants


The extremists have abandoned all of their positions in the city, except for two small pockets of resistance in the east of the city, Kurdish commander Baharin Kandal said.

Despite their gains, Kurdish leaders say Kobani cannot survive long-term without arms and ammunition reaching the defenders, something Turkey - which lies just 200 yards to the city's north - has so far refused to allow. No weapons or ammunition have reached Kobani, however, fighters there say.

Another six United States airstrikes hit the east of the city in recent days.

Posted by: jfl | Oct 22 2014 19:04 utc | 45

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