Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Ghosts of the neocons haunt Turkey

We can thank Uncle Dick and the Neo-cons for this latest eruption of sectarian tensions in the Middle East sandbox where we so often play the dirty geopolitical game. By creating a defacto Kurdish state within Iraq, the US has sprinkled the seed of armed conflict in a region already rife with it. The US' strategy was to weaken Saddam Hussein by using the Kurds as pawns. While the Kurds have been historically made victims of imperialism, this US gambit to advance its narrow goals has the effect of creating major headaches for friend and foe alike:
The Associated Press: Turkey launches incursion into Iraq: ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish soldiers, air force bombers and helicopter gunships launched an incursion into Iraq on Wednesday, hours after Kurdish rebels killed 24 soldiers and wounded 18 others in multiple attacks along the border.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey had launched large-scale operations, including "a hot pursuit within the limits of international law."
He did not elaborate, but added, "We will never bow to any attack from inside or outside Turkey.""
The Turks are certainly not blameless -- they have a history, so to speak, of oppressing ethnic minorities in the interest of consolidating the power of the Turkish majority. Still, this incitement of a war between Turkey and the Kurdish mini-state in Iraq is a recipe for further bloodshed and turmoil.

Never let it be said that Washington is oblivious to these consequences, however. Foreign policy goal #1 seems to be destabilization of countries where the US can't directly control the situation. By keeping factionalism alive and thriving, the neocon agenda of divide-and-conquer speeds along at full throttle -- and the fallout will be someone else's problem.

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