The Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and their jihadist allies of the Turkish contingent of the FSA are now 5 km away from Afrin City. As the rest of the Kurdish enclave has quickly been gobbled up by the TAF, Kurdish civilians have fallen back on Afrin City as the Tweet below shows.
Thousands of people from Afrin’s villages and other cantons have moved to Afrin city center. There is no place to accommodate all the people in the city and turkey/jihadis are preparing to lay a military siege on the city. Huge humanitarian crisis is in the making. pic.twitter.com/tHRG9WUNDd
— Gilgo (@agire_cudi) March 11, 2018
The original purpose of the “Operation Olive Branch” as the TAF called it was to “cleanse” the Turkish-Syrian border of Kurdish “terrorists.” Of course Erdogan loves to call most Kurdish people terrorists. Now that the TAF and the FSA (Turkish division) have nearly encircled Afrin City, most observers are questioning whether Erdogan is really more focused on genocidal ambitions against all Kurdish people.
With a serious showdown in the offing in the next few days as Turkey begins its seige of Afrin City, there is still hope that the Kurdish leadership in Syria will allow the Assad regime to enter Afrin City to push back on the TAF.
Of course there is still a possibility, no matter how remote, that Donald Trump may decide to take Turkey to task for wantonly attacking a key US ally. As the siege over Afrin City begins there is dimming hope that the US will make a case to defend the Kurds in Afrin, which would remain isolated from the US backed eastern Rojava located from the Euphrates to the Iraqi border.
If the Kurds allow the Syrian regime to enter Afrin City this would effectively pit a Russian proxy in direct confrontation with a NATO member. Of course it is a NATO member who is busy decimating an indigenous people and key ally of the biggest NATO member of all, the USA. We may see a tacit allowance of Russian/Syrian assistance of an American ally in order to push back against everyone’s favorite enemy, Turkey.
Whether or not the USA enters the fray against Turkey or at least supplies direct weapons or supplies to the Kurdish majority SDF in Afrin remains to be seen. If they keep stalling then either the Kurds in Afrin will be wiped out or the Russian/Syrian access will pull the Afrin Kurds into their orbit.
If there is any question over the brutality of the TAF and the goals of Erdogan’s “Operation Olive Branch,” the Tweet below and the many similar to it should remind every one of the evil that is being allowed to grow in northern Syria.
22 civilians were injured Including children and women near Barbana village in the area of Raju while trying to escape to #Afrin from Turkish shelling on them villages.#HRW #Ghouta #syria #Turkey #Kurdistan pic.twitter.com/DHlziRWB3B
— Peshmerga #Afrin (@KURDISTAN_ARMY) March 5, 2018