According to Turkish President Erdogan, the United States and its western allies seek to maintain control of the oil fields in northern Syria. Over this past weekend he said, “Those who are planning in Syria are planning on oil, and we will spoil this game. By supporting Syria, and making this country stay on its feet again, we will keep surprising them.” However despite this, Erdogan has shown a great deal of support for the recent airstrikes by the United States conducted in Syria against the Assad regime. The strikes, in response to the alleged chemical attacks that occurred in April, were against chemical weapons facilities. The Assad regime has vehemently denied the use of chemical weapons and has blamed opposition forces for the events fabrication.
Despite Turkey’s aggression toward the United States allied Kurdish forces in Rojava, the NATO member backed up the United States in its decision to target the regime. The foreign ministry of Turkey stated post operation that, “Turkey considers the operation carried out early this morning by the United States, United Kingdom and France to be an appropriate response to the chemical attack which caused the deaths of many civilians in Douma on 7 April. We welcome this operation which has eased humanity’s conscience in the face of the attack in Douma, largely suspected to have been carried out by the regime.”
President Erdogan has also gone after members of the Turkish financial sector as the lira has dropped in value over the U.S. dollar over the course of this year’s events. Erdogan spoke at a conference in Uskudar stating, “Hey, those who are in the finance sector do not threaten us with exchange, this and that! You will not have the right to live this country. Look, I am saying this very clearly, such an intervention is a betrayal to this country.” At the beginning of this year the Turkish lira had an exchange rate of 3.84 to $1, as of this month it has risen to 4.11 according to current trends.
Turkish military forces have gained complete control of Afrin in northern Syria and are now threatening to move on Manbij where U.S. led coalition forces reside with Syrian democratic Forces. They have also begun bombing the northern Iraqi-Kurdistan border while establishing several military outpost throughout the mountains in the region; they have allegedly moved 20 kilometers inside the border in an effort to eliminate the PKK elements residing there. President Erdogan has claimed that the military actions were conducted in an effort to remove “terrorism” at the Turkish border.
Featured Image Courtesy of the Kremlin [CC BY 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons