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Trump Rewards Turkey for "Ethnic Cleansing" of Kurds from Northern Syria

What Turkey is doing in Northern Syria is called "ethnic cleansing" in international law. It means that they are forcing "violent displacement of entire populations based on their ethnic identity, whether through large-scale military attacks on towns; targeted physical assaults, such as killing, rape, and imprisonment and torture," according to Professor Bridget Conley of Tufts University. It generally encompasses some of the most heinous crimes under international law.

Vox: David Petraeus, the retired four-star Army general who led troops during the Iraq War and directed the CIA, said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union” program that what’s happening at the Turkish-Syria border “certainly is ethnic displacement. And, arguably, it may turn out to be ethnic cleansing.”

President Trump announced Yesterday that the United States will lift sanctions on Turkey because he feels that they will abide by the permanent cease-fire agreement brokered by Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Kurds were not a party to the agreement, but are expected to accept its terms or die defending their homeland. Thus, Trump is rewarding President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for forcing America's Kurdish allies to leave their homes and villages or face annihilation at the hands of Turkey's military.

Turkey claims that it's creating a "safe zone" along its border and wants to move about two million Syrian refugees into the area. But, this will not be a "safe zone" for the Kurds, quite the contrary. The Turkish, Russian, and Syrian military and Iranian militia forces are already moving in to carve up the Kurdish homeland.

What does this mean for the Kurds? Some are fleeing Turkey's "safe zone," creating a new flood of refugees into the south, and some fighters are joining Syrian President Assad's army. But, in the long run they fear for the worst.

General Mazlum Kobane, the head of Kurdish forces in Syria, warned that what Turkey has in mind will end up being " the biggest ethnic cleansing operation of the twenty-first century.”

And one of President Trump's key allies in the Senate, John Cornyn, admitted that the situation will get worse, much worse, for the Kurds.

Dallas Morning News: "Texas Sen. John Cornyn defended the president’s abrupt decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria, arguing Wednesday that with Turkey intent on ethnic cleansing of the Kurds — longtime U.S. allies in the fight against the radical Islamic State — the move had merit."
“If Turkey was planning on coming into northern Syria and trying to ethnically cleanse the Kurds, and U.S. troops were caught in the middle, I am not completely convinced that it was a bad idea to get them out of harm’s way,” Cornyn said."
"Critics of Trump’s policy have explicitly accused him of standing aside as Turkey attacked and displaced at least 160,000 members of an ethnic group that sacrificed more than 10,000 fighters in seven years of war with ISIS."

What Sen. Cornyn fails to mention is that President Trump could have prevented all of this by standing up to Erdogan and standing with our Kurdish allies. That, however, would require a president with a fully functional moral compass.

#Syria #Turkey #news

By: Don Lam & Curated Content

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