News flash: President Trump is a nationalist. I know some think that simply means he’s a bubba with secret fascist leanings, and an affinity for nighttime bonfires. But you knew what we were getting when he was elected. We were sick of all these wars and foreign entanglements that cost the US in dollars and American lives. We all wanted out. Trump is now doing that. And everyone is bitching like their dog was kicked.
I respect the Kurds, and honor their fighting spirit. I am saddened by the loss of life that our other “ally” Turkey is inflicting on them. But dammit, look at a map. Find Syria. Look north to Turkey. Look north again to The Black Sea. Look up one final time… see it? That’s Russia.
Besides neocons and Trump-hating liberals, y’know who else is pissed about Turkey’s border incursion? Syria and Russia. Turkey is in a damn tight spot. I’m not excusing their current invasion, but I understand why it’s happening. The Turks need to secure their southern flank. The Bear is already breathing down their necks from their Black Sea ports. And despite their “frenemies” photo ops, Putin and Erdogan trust each other as far as they can throw one another.
We shouldn’t trust either of them as well, but we need Turkey. We need them as a buffer against further Russian expansion into the Mediterranean and the Middle East. Erdogan is a piece of work. But he’s the bastard that we have to deal with. If I had my way, I’d love to kick Turkey out of NATO tomorrow. But we can’t. If you’re thinking similarly, get over it. Not everyone on our team can be as refined as Brussels and the Netherlands.
In 1982, we had a similar problem with Great Britain and Argentina over the Falkland Islands. The US was a member of NATO, and a member of the Organization of American States (OAS). We legally, and morally, could not take sides. But we did. On the “down-low”, the US supplied Britain with fuel, munitions and intel for their invasion. It leaked out later that the US wasn’t exactly neutral in the conflict, but it was worth the political slings and arrows.
Because in 1982, The Cold War was in full-swing, and England was a key ally in keeping The Soviets bottled-up. Hey, my dad used to live in Argentina, and I wish no ill on them gauchos. But the Argentine government rolled the dice and it came up craps. People were going to die regardless. If anything, the US assistance saved lives by making the lop-sided conflict shorter.
Argentina licked it’s wounds, and swallowed it’s pride. Great Britain had a parade and went back to containing the commies. And a few years later, The Soviet Union fell.
I’m not saying that we should help the Turks. But I think getting out of their way (this time) makes sense. If the Argentinians surrendered quickly in ’82, they would have lost a lot fewer lives. Perhaps the Kurds should think about that. And perhaps everyone should shove their histrionics into the drawer next to their unused set of big-boy realpolitik pants. Consider putting those on.
We need to protest what Turkey is doing, but putting excessive pressure on them will be counterproductive, and quite frankly asinine. If we end up isolating them, Turkey will have no choice but to cozy-up to Russia. Again, look at that map. Think about that.
So finish up with all the moral outrage and virtue signaling. Sometimes, the bully gets away with it. Working yourself into a lather is just self-abuse. And your irrational urge to lash-out will only make a bad situation worse.