US Congress rings the charge against President Erdogan

It was expected. Barely returning from the 2-week retreat in which American representatives and senators participated, the United States Congress, bringing together not only Democratic parliamentarians but also numerous Republican elected officials, immediately declared, as he announced it 4 days ago, which he was preparing urgently a series of sanctions against Turkey following the attack by the Kurdish allies carried out for 5 days now. Concretely, Washington could embargo all deliveries of weapons and defense systems to Ankara, with a significantly more significant weight than when France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland and Norway do so. Note, however, that the reference to the energy sector seems to have disappeared from the declaration, but perhaps it will actually be integrated into the text of the law itself.

The Turkish armed forces today use numerous American weapon systems, the United States being its main supplier of defense technologies, followed by Spain and Italy. Thus, the Turkish forces use more than 350 combat aircraft of American origin F16, F5 and F4, more than 1500 M60 and M48 combat tanks, almost 6000 M113 and ACV-15 infantry fighting vehicles, as well as more than 450 M109, M270 and MGM140 mobile artillery systems. Finally, they use more than 300 US-made helicopters, including CH47 Chinooks and UH-60 and S70 Black Hawks. However, if the measure will undoubtedly have significant diplomatic weight, its operational weight will be much more limited, since the Turkish Defense industry today ensures almost all of the maintenance and modernization of its equipment, without resorting to American and European companies for this.

F15 Türkiye Defense News | Military alliances | Syrian conflict
The Turkish Air Force has nearly 250 F16s, 180 of which have been upgraded to Blok 50+ standard.

The firm measure of American parliamentarians will certainly cause inconvenience to RT Erdogan, who now knows that he has lost his last supports in the American Senate as well as in the House of Representatives. But it is above all Donald Trump who finds himself severely isolated, after confirming yesterday the order to withdraw 1000 members of the American special forces who were deployed near the Kurdish forces. The president's justifications for abandoning Kurdish allies, such as calls for Europeans to “recover their nationals from Kurdish prisons”, have considerably lost their effectiveness, particularly with regard to American public opinion. Even the very faithful American evangelical church, pillar of the president's electorate, announced two days ago that it was dissociating itself from D. Trump's positions following the abandonment of the Kurds in Syria.

At the same time, the Kurds and the government of Bashar Al Assad signed, under the aegis of the Russian authorities, an agreement aimed at prevent Turkish forces from entering Syria. This agreement led to the rapid deployment of 5000 men of Syrian loyalist forces to the towns of Kobani and Ras al-Ain, taking with them heavy equipment, armor, artillery systems and anti-aircraft defenses, which the Kurds lack. The Russian authorities, for their part, remain extremely cautious and measured in their declarations, visibly trying to bring the Turkish president back to more acceptable positions, without having to openly take sides against him. But the determination of the latter, who knows that today he plays a large part of his credibility, and therefore his political future, may well lead Vladimir Putin to once again have to intervene in support of his Syrian ally, if so much so that the Turkish air force came to directly engage the Syrian forces.

T72 Syria Defense News | Military alliances | Syrian conflict
The loyalist Syrian forces have nearly 2000 T72 tanks, armored vehicles capable of facing the M60 and M48 which constitute the Turkish battle force.

One thing is certain, whatever the conclusion of this crisis, it will leave deep marks in the relations between Turkey and its neighbors, partners or allies, whether they are Syrians, Iranians, Europeans, Americans and Russians. On the international scene, President Erdogan no longer has much as an ally as the Pakistani authorities, with whom he shares an obvious ambition, as well as Qatar, to which he is linked by the Muslim Brotherhood. We can also wonder what role China plays in this equation, given its obvious discretion on the issue since the start of the crisis, its proximity to Pakistan, and considering the interest that Beijing would have in forming an alliance. strong with Turkey, providing it with the much-desired strategic position in the Mediterranean, the Middle East and facing Europe.

The Turkish-Syrian crisis which is unfolding today appears, like the crisis in the Balkans in 1914, as the crucible of the ambitions of all the world powers and their leaders, in a context of growing tensions and race to armaments relaunched. It remains to be seen where this will take each of the actors...

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