Ignorant, impulsive and dishonourable as ever, US President Donald Trump is rushing to withdraw US troops from Syria. (“Sights set on home”, The Mercury, February 12 2019).
He was warned that premature withdrawal will leave the Kurdish YPG fighters open to attack by Turkey and allow ISIS to regroup.
One year ago, Turkish troops, heavily armed with German tanks and British aviation, and assisted by gangs of Islamist thugs, invaded the Kurdish city of Afrin northern Syria in defiance of international law.
Turkish autocrat Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised that he would purge the city of its Kurdish population, and so he did. He has no interest in fighting ISIS. The Islamists forced some 100,000 Kurds from their homes and replaced them with jihadi families while Turkish forces looked on.
Erdogan has promised more “ethnic cleansing” of Kurds when his forces invade after the US withdrawal. We cannot allow this to happen to people to whom we owe so much in the fight against ISIS.
The Australian government must tell Erdogan that another invasion is unacceptable, and call on the UN Security Council to impose a No Fly Zone in northern Syria to protect the Kurds.
Professor John Tully
Honorary Professor/Educator, PhD
College of Arts and Education