Pompeo Confirms He’s Salty He Didn’t Get to Fight Russia to the Last Turk
Points out Russia killed 34 Turkey's NATO troops in Syria
Pompeo says Russia has killed “dozens” of Turkey’s NATO troops and the US “continues” to support its “ally”:
The United States believes Russia has killed dozens of Turkish military personnel in the course of its military operations in Syria, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Tuesday, saying that Washington continued to offer support to its NATO ally Turkey, reports Reuters.
Speaking at a news conference at the State Department, Pompeo did not specify where or during which incident the Turkish soldiers were killed. It was the first time Washington has directly pointed its finger at Moscow over the death of Turkish soldiers.
“We believe Russia has killed dozens of Turkish military personnel in the course of their military operations, and we stand with our NATO ally Turkey and we continue to consider additional measures to support Turkey and to end the violence in Idlib and in Syria more broadly,” Pompeo said.
Last month, an airstrike that Ankara said was carried out by the Syrian government forces killed at least 34 Turkish soldiers, the deadliest attack on the Turkish army in nearly 30 years.
What good is this talk to anyone now? Well, the Putin-Erdogan agreement is facing obstacles, as everyone knew the March 15 deadline for Russian-Turkish patrols along the jihadi-held M4 highway was way too optimistic. So Pompeo and the rest of his State Department gang are doing what they can to see if they can’t perhaps get the two fighting again by encouraging Turkey of support they’ve already proven unwilling (as the US) or unable (as the State Department) to deliver.
I can’t see Ankara, which opted to blame Syria for the strikes to save face, being terribly grateful to Pompeo for reminding its populace of the slap Erdogan had to put behind him and walk to Moscow to ask for a truce and be grateful for it.
Another thing is more interesting. When Erdogan last October was threatening (bluffing) he would invade US/Kurdish-held northeastern Syria, Trump withdrew from the border to allow Erdogan to proceed.
Yet when Erdogan last month launched an offensive to throw back the Russian-backed Syrian army, Moscow stood by its client and within days Erdogan, bloodied in the fighting, was saying he didn’t want the conflict to have any negative impact on Russian-Turkish relations and humbled himself at the Kremlin.
The Trump administration fed the US-backed Kurds to him hoping it would place him on a collision course with Russia instead (the Russians stepped in to limit his advance in the northeast as well), which it did, but to no result. The S-400, Turk Stream and the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant all remain strong points of cooperation (among others).
It’s almost like even Erdogan appreciates that at least with the Russians you know where you stand, not so with the treacherous Empire.