Turkey’s authoritarian president, in his strongest warning yet, threatened on Saturday to launch a military operation into Rojava, against the YPG and allied revolutionary forces.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s threats were a warning that a US-Turkish deal to mount joint patrols on the Syrian border with Turkey was already faltering.
Erdogan said a Turkish military operation could begin “maybe today, maybe tomorrow.”
The Turkish military has been dispatching units and defense equipment to southeastern Sanliurfa province in the past month. Mr Erdogan had expressed frustration, threatening a unilateral operation, but this was his most specific threat.
“We have given all kinds of warning regarding the (area) east of the Euphrates to the relevant parties. We have acted with enough patience,” Mr Erdogan said.
A Turkish military operation, however limited, would put major pressure on the political experiment and will bring allied revolutionary groups, and specifically anarchist fighters Tekoşîna Anarşîst potentially back into armed conflict.
Revolutionary forces have not seen combat since the defeat of ISIS, and the Turkish state is a more formidable force.
These recent threats from the Turkish state come on the heels of a major concession that allowed the Turksih military to enter Rojava and patrol the border towns with the imperialist US military. The Turkish state, having been given an inch, now seems prepared to take a mile.
There is potential that this is traditional bluster from the head of state, in an attempt to wrangle further concessions, but the pattern is clear – Turkey saber rattles and gets more bargaining chips and the revolutionary project is put under increased pressure.