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  #51  
Old 10-07-2019, 07:25 PM
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In relation to that, from 2003, referring to events in 1988:

"Iraqi Kurds remember day Saddam gassed them"
  #52  
Old 10-07-2019, 07:33 PM
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I'm just baffled. Trump shits on our allies the Kurds, then he tweets out a statement pre-emptively shitting on our ally Turkey if they shit on the Kurds.

This is rhetorical bafflement; I fully understand who and what Trump is. One tires of starting sentences with "Even for Trump, this is crazy."
  #53  
Old 10-07-2019, 09:46 PM
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It's only a matter of time and 10,000 ISIS fighters will "escape". I seriously doubt Turkey will keep them secured.

It is deeply troubling to see the US turn our backs on an ally. The Kurds have been very reliable and deserve better than this betrayal.

I see many Rep Senators are already speaking out. I hope they will get this terrible decision reversed.
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.cbs...te-house-says/
A lot of the pundits seem to think Trump is going to reverse his decision. I don’t think he will, though. From his POV, the State Department has betrayed him. So he’s never going to work with them again, he’s going to make and execute his own foreign policy from now on.

The show has just started. Trump knows he has an army of supporters behind him. He doesn’t need the support of any congresspeople, not at all. To the contrary, they feel that they need him.

He’s not going to back down on this and he’s going to keep making capricious foreign policy decisions. I bet he closes the Mexican border completely and ends our involvement with South Korea before Halloween.
  #54  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:26 PM
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A lot of the pundits seem to think Trump is going to reverse his decision. I don’t think he will, though. From his POV, the State Department has betrayed him. So he’s never going to work with them again, he’s going to make and execute his own foreign policy from now on.

The show has just started. Trump knows he has an army of supporters behind him. He doesn’t need the support of any congresspeople, not at all. To the contrary, they feel that they need him.

He’s not going to back down on this and he’s going to keep making capricious foreign policy decisions. I bet he closes the Mexican border completely and ends our involvement with South Korea before Halloween.
Surely you mean North Korea, as the Republic of Korea currently hosts over 20K American military and their families.
  #55  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:35 PM
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Hey AK84, your version of peace has broken out. Aren’t you glad that the US told Erdogan it is cool to start bombing? The man only wants a little peace... peace... oooooooh, a little piece of Kurdistan...
  #56  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:44 PM
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Cornfielded?
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  #57  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:45 PM
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One hopes Trump will reconsider this. It does not seem to be in the long term security interests of the US.
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  #58  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:46 PM
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Hey AK84, your version of peace has broken out. Aren’t you glad that the US told Erdogan it is cool to start bombing? The man only wants a little peace... peace... oooooooh, a little piece of Kurdistan...
Blow up a dam. And then get angry that the water is causing damage. And blame the water. And get angry when someone suggests that staying away will do less harm
Well done.

  #59  
Old 10-07-2019, 10:58 PM
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Blow up a dam. And then get angry that the water is causing damage. And blame the water. And get angry when someone suggests that staying away will do less harm
Well done.:
If that stupid Dutch boy had just pulled his finger from the dike, Haarlem would have been better off flooded, eh?
  #60  
Old 10-07-2019, 11:53 PM
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Yeah, but the stupid Dutch boy in the case has blown up the dikes not put his finger in them. And when he decides that we are out of the dike blowing business, has seen people get angry at him, for not bowing up more dikes .

Last edited by AK84; 10-07-2019 at 11:56 PM. Reason: Autocorrect put up wrong “dykes”
  #61  
Old 10-08-2019, 05:42 AM
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Republicans have been criticizing Trump's decision - even Lindsey Graham.

Lindsey Graham:
A former opponent of Trump, then a craven supporter (see his almost unhinged comments on the whistleblower scandal) and, days later, a critic again. Mr. Graham, please reconsider your political choices.
  #62  
Old 10-08-2019, 06:06 AM
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Blow up a dam. And then get angry that the water is causing damage. And blame the water. And get angry when someone suggests that staying away will do less harm
Well done.

So progressives are "pro-war" for opposing an action that has led to more war and more regional instability, and will likely lead to the slaughter of thousand of our allies and a further erosion of America's global influence. And it's all Obama's fault.

Yes, that checks out.
  #63  
Old 10-08-2019, 07:08 AM
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Its Obama and Bush II's fault. And Trumps since he has been in charge.
I am pleased that you think that somehow alienating a large and old ally on the Southern flank of NATO will lead to, errrrr "stability"?
If the US was really all in on Kurds, then pay the price. Go in and create a Kurdish state and protect it with American blood and treasure. The current approach, which is to give just enough support to create militancy and chaos, but not enough to change the circumstance decisivly, is stupid at best, downright evil at worst.
  #64  
Old 10-08-2019, 07:45 AM
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Oh, I get it. You're just a fan of the fascist Erdogan.
  #65  
Old 10-08-2019, 08:02 AM
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I am pleased that you think that somehow alienating a large and old ally on the Southern flank of NATO will lead to, errrrr "stability"?
That'll be the "large and old ally" whose economy Trump just threatened to destroy, yes?
  #66  
Old 10-08-2019, 10:04 AM
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Even my Trump-loving father is furious. Went on a rant at breakfast, didn't have a single good thing to say about him.
  #67  
Old 10-08-2019, 10:14 AM
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Even my Trump-loving father is furious. Went on a rant at breakfast, didn't have a single good thing to say about him.
Nope, nope, you must be incorrect.

Trump has said that everybody loves his decision. Trump is never wrong.
  #68  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:15 AM
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That'll be the "large and old ally" whose economy Trump just threatened to destroy, yes?
This is typical Trump. No matter what he does he somehow manages to do it in the worst possible way. In this case, he intervened in a conflict between the Kurds and the Turks in such a way that he made our relationship with both sides worse.
  #69  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:25 AM
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The West has been betraying the Kurds for a century. This is just the latest example.
  #70  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:37 AM
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While I don't necessarily disagree that this is something of a betrayal, I also I don't think there's a country on earth that has done as much to help the Kurds as the USA.
  #71  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:48 AM
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I'm not sure whether it makes it better or worse that we give them our full support in between bouts of brutal betrayal.
  #72  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:49 AM
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While I don't necessarily disagree that this is something of a betrayal, I also I don't think there's a country on earth that has done as much to help the Kurds as the USA.
"Hey, Pesh, before you get all upset about those 500 pound U.S.-made bombs that are being dropped on you, remember when we gave you all that rice last year? Let's just keep things in perspective."
  #73  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:55 AM
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I'm not sure whether it makes it better or worse that we give them our full support in between bouts of brutal betrayal.
I'm of the opinion that some support is better than no support at all. YMMV.
  #74  
Old 10-08-2019, 12:07 PM
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I'm of the opinion that some support is better than no support at all. YMMV.
In most cases, sure. Giving a starving guy a sandwich is a good thing. But not if you are going to stab him in the back when he's done eating it.
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  #75  
Old 10-08-2019, 01:17 PM
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I'm of the opinion that some support is better than no support at all. YMMV.
Not necessarily. If you encourage somebody to enter into a situation that makes them more vulnerable than their current situation, you may be responsible for their new vulnerability.

For example, the Kurds have been oppressed for centuries but the level of oppression rises and falls. We come along and encourage the Kurds to rise up and declare independence and we promise them support if they do this. So they do.

And then we pull our support and leave them on their own. The country that they declared independence from is now free to attack the Kurds and reclaim the Kurdish territory that had proclaimed independence. And a large number of Kurds will be killed in the process.

The Kurds will end up worse off than they would have been if we had never encouraged them in the first place.
  #76  
Old 10-08-2019, 01:22 PM
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U.S. support for the Kurds is like Lucy helping Charlie Brown learn to kick a ball...
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  #77  
Old 10-08-2019, 01:24 PM
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In your example, are we still talking about Kurds in northern Syria in the 21st century, or some other group of Kurds in another country during another administration?
  #78  
Old 10-08-2019, 01:42 PM
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For example, the Kurds have been oppressed for centuries but the level of oppression rises and falls. We come along and encourage the Kurds to rise up and declare independence and we promise them support if they do this. So they do.
WTF are you talking about? Kurdish nationalism is barely a century old. The British supported it to hurt the Turks in WW1 and since then extra-regional actors have always found it a useful tool to put pressure on regional countries.
  #79  
Old 10-08-2019, 01:44 PM
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In your example, are we still talking about Kurds in northern Syria in the 21st century, or some other group of Kurds in another country during another administration?
I'm still failing to see this silver lining you're trying to find.

Kurds get steamrolled by ISIS, and we give billions of dollars of weapons to them to fight back. Turkey gears up to attack them, and we can either (a) stay alongside them, knowing that Turkey isn't so dumb as to bomb a Peshmerga unit with Green Berets on the ground with them; or (b) pull up stakes so the attack can proceed. You're acting like we did them a huge favor by letting them be attacked by Turks instead of ISIS.

And by the way, the SDF took a hell of a lot of ISIS fighters prisoner. Many thousands, maybe tens of thousands. They aren't being held in prisons; mostly just camps guarded by these Arabs and Kurds who we instructed to treat detainees humanely. So if Turkey invades, what do you think is going to happen to these detainees? I'm guessing the guards flee for their lives and stop guarding the gates. This is a disaster.
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Old 10-08-2019, 01:58 PM
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Trump certainly handled this ineptly. Much like everything else he gets involved with.

But, news reports indicate Turkey has been massing troops on the border for months. The US has maybe 1000 soldiers stationed there. I'm not sure what the US could do without getting dragged into a full war with Turkey. We don't have a supply line or support bases for a war. Our options to help are very limited.

A conflict with Turkey could get out of hand very quickly. Especially if Russia took their side. They have a large base in Syria.

Last edited by aceplace57; 10-08-2019 at 02:00 PM.
  #81  
Old 10-08-2019, 02:36 PM
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Pardon me for jumping right to the end without reading the thread. I’m in the office today, and I have to do some work!

Trump On Turkey: ‘I Have A Little Conflict Of Interest ... It’s Called Trump Towers’

Trump said this in 2015, before he was the president. But he still has a financial interest in Trump Towers Istanbul, right? And he’s just given Turkey what they’ve always wanted, while he holds those financial interests? How is this not a violation of the Emoluments Clause of the United States Constitution? How is it not a criminal violation of federal law (18 U.S. Code § 208.Acts affecting a personal financial interest)?
  #82  
Old 10-08-2019, 02:38 PM
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You don't know what the US could have done to avoid being attacked by a fellow NATO member short of a full war against said fellow NATO member? Seriously?
  #83  
Old 10-08-2019, 02:46 PM
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You don't know what the US could have done to avoid being attacked by a fellow NATO member short of a full war against said fellow NATO member? Seriously?
Economic sanctions? We tried that already with many other countries like Iran, N Korea, Russia and it doesn't do a damn bit of good.

The Turks have been at war with the Kurds for several generations. Sanctions won't put out this fire. Turkey will never accept a Kurdish state on their border. Just like Israel will never accept a Palestinian state.

Last edited by aceplace57; 10-08-2019 at 02:50 PM.
  #84  
Old 10-08-2019, 04:04 PM
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The USA has indeed betrayed the Kurds. Not for the first time they betray them, not for the first time they betray an ally. Europe takes note, I can assure you. We should have taken note when the USA betrayed the Shia Muslims in Irak (also more than once) - and you know how divided we were during the Second Irak War. Maybe it is time for the USA to do the right thing an betray Saudi Arabia. Fat chance.
As Western European I must admit that betraying allies is a time honored tradition. Doing it in such a foolish way is worse than Chamberlainesque. But what do you expect from Trump, he said, preaching to the converted.
History is a sad affair...
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  #85  
Old 10-08-2019, 07:10 PM
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WTF are you talking about? Kurdish nationalism is barely a century old.
No, the Kurds have been an identifiable ethnic group since at least medieval times. (Kurds themselves identify with earlier ethnic groups but these claims are arguable.)
  #86  
Old 10-08-2019, 07:13 PM
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But, news reports indicate Turkey has been massing troops on the border for months. The US has maybe 1000 soldiers stationed there. I'm not sure what the US could do without getting dragged into a full war with Turkey. We don't have a supply line or support bases for a war. Our options to help are very limited.
Pretty sure if it had approached the point of fighting an actual war with the United States, Turkey would have stepped back. Erdogan's not insane.
  #87  
Old 10-08-2019, 08:05 PM
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Anyone feel better after Trump's latest Tweets?

Quote:
As I have stated strongly before, and just to reiterate, if Turkey does anything that I, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits, I will totally destroy and obliterate the Economy of Turkey (I’ve done before!). They must, with Europe and others, watch over...

....the captured ISIS fighters and families. The U.S. has done far more than anyone could have ever expected, including the capture of 100% of the ISIS Caliphate. It is time now for others in the region, some of great wealth, to protect their own territory. THE USA IS GREAT!
I guess his "great and unmatched wisdom" makes it all better now

I dont' feel better, but I do find myself wondering when he had a casino in Istanbul.
  #88  
Old 10-08-2019, 08:29 PM
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No, the Kurds have been an identifiable ethnic group since at least medieval times. (Kurds themselves identify with earlier ethnic groups but these claims are arguable.)
Ethnic consciousness is not identical with nationalism. Arab and Kurdish nationalism have similarly young roots - basically late 19th century. The rise of Turkish nationalism as a semi-coherent philosophy/policy in the late Ottoman state actually served to stimulate Arab, Kurdish and other nationalist movements in response.
  #89  
Old 10-08-2019, 08:40 PM
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Ethnic consciousness is not identical with nationalism. Arab and Kurdish nationalism have similarly young roots - basically late 19th century. The rise of Turkish nationalism as a semi-coherent philosophy/policy in the late Ottoman state actually served to stimulate Arab, Kurdish and other nationalist movements in response.
Tell it to AK84. He was the one who brought up nationalism. I said "the Kurds have been oppressed for centuries but the level of oppression rises and falls."
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:40 PM
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But, news reports indicate Turkey has been massing troops on the border for months. The US has maybe 1000 soldiers stationed there. I'm not sure what the US could do without getting dragged into a full war with Turkey. We don't have a supply line or support bases for a war. Our options to help are very limited.
Yes, if only the US had a strong naval force in the Med, with aircraft carriers and cruise missiles, one that could go right up the Dardanelles and suggest to Turkey that harming Kurds would be a bad idea.

If only.


Oh, wait a minute ...
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:55 PM
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Tell it to AK84. He was the one who brought up nationalism. I said "the Kurds have been oppressed for centuries but the level of oppression rises and falls."
They haven’t been oppressed for centuries any more than Arabs have been, that’s the point. For most of these centuries the entire place was ruled by the Turks. For most of that time linguistic and ethnic identities were not the main markers of differences, it was religious and sectarian persuasion.

The emphasis on ethnic identities arose with the rise of nationalism. Claims of “oppression” on ethnic origin are anarchonistic.
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:59 PM
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Yes, if only the US had a strong naval force in the Med, with aircraft carriers and cruise missiles, one that could go right up the Dardanelles and suggest to Turkey that harming Kurds would be a bad idea.

If only.
Oh, wait a minute ...
Well I mean, few things would delight the Russians and Chinese more than the sight of the US using Force against its own allies to help ethnic separatists in that ally. It would be played on loop by their foreign ministries.
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Old 10-08-2019, 10:03 PM
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Sure. But the idea that the US is just powerless to influence matters in the area is what I was responding to.

The US has poured tremendous amounts of money and resources into the Med for the express purpose of being able to influence events there. Whether they use that power for good or ill is another question.
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  #94  
Old 10-08-2019, 10:28 PM
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They haven’t been oppressed for centuries any more than Arabs have been, that’s the point. For most of these centuries the entire place was ruled by the Turks. For most of that time linguistic and ethnic identities were not the main markers of differences, it was religious and sectarian persuasion.

The emphasis on ethnic identities arose with the rise of nationalism. Claims of “oppression” on ethnic origin are anarchonistic.
Are you saying that ethnic oppression is something that has only existed for a couple hundred years?
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Old 10-08-2019, 10:45 PM
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Are you saying that ethnic oppression is something that has only existed for a couple hundred years?
As it is understood and inflicted today, yes.
  #96  
Old 10-08-2019, 11:41 PM
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It IS a betrayal of the Kurds, however I suppose it had to happen sometime (the U.S. leaving).
If it can be done, I think the Kurds in Syria should try to reach some sort of an agreement with the Syrian government. Perhaps some sort of semi-autonomous region.
I wonder if Turkey would be willing to fight Syria, the Kurds, and Syria's Russian allies.
Overall though, it was and is extremely unwise to get too involved in Middle Eastern affairs, on anyones side.
The whole region always was and likely always will be an absolute mess. Conflict there is forever.
  #97  
Old 10-09-2019, 04:42 AM
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Russia - a win for their client state, Syria
Iran - a win, eliminating a threat on their border
Turkey - a win, removing the possibility of more support for Turkish Kurds
Isis - a win, probably leading to release/escape of captive fighters

United States - world humiliation and distrust
Accurate, except for that last bit.

United States - business as per usual. sadly.
  #98  
Old 10-09-2019, 05:38 AM
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Accurate, except for that last bit.

United States - business as per usual. sadly.
I think that Trump's appalling behaviour makes this situation much worse than usual.
Public statements about how incredibly wonderful he is and threats to destroy an allies' economy must make everyone shudder.
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Old 10-09-2019, 08:37 AM
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Just got a notification that Turkey has invaded Syria. Links soon...
  #100  
Old 10-09-2019, 08:54 AM
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AP announcement:

https://twitter.com/AP/status/1181922377673924608?s=20

"BREAKING: Turkish President Erdogan announces in tweet that Turkish offensive into northeast Syria has started."

Erdogan's tweet:

https://twitter.com/RTErdogan/status...846735872?s=20

"The Turkish Armed Forces, together with the Syrian National Army, just launched #OperationPeaceSpring against PKK/YPG and Daesh terrorists in northern Syria. Our mission is to prevent the creation of a terror corridor across our southern border, and to bring peace to the area."

Last edited by JohnT; 10-09-2019 at 08:55 AM.
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