Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s hands are stained in the blood of civilians, the results of the intentions of a strongman striking against a stateless people — the Kurds.
The latest clatterings out of Erdogan stem from his play to nationalism when in effect he broke an established truce with militant Turkish Kurds who were truce observant as the cessation enabled a safe normalisation of relations between Turkish Kurds and the wider population.
Erdogan used sectarian nationalism to enable his presidency.
He ratcheted up sectarianism bringing the ceasefire to an end so as to increase Turkish nationalism to increase his share of parliamentary deputies or his hold on major cities and towns.
And as the provoked violence increased, he moved to greatly increase and extend the power and possible longevity of his presidency.
Tens of scores of thousands of wannabe violent and sectarian jihadists passed to and fro across Turkish ground and their various acolytes and proxies.
When support was needed against IS, Turkey’s tanks sealed the border.
When Erdogan said he would strike IS, his warplanes struck Kurds in Syria several times.
Now, Erdogan invades Syria — attacking Kurds, the main component in north and east Syria who fought on the ground with US airpower against IS, defeating them and guarding IS prisoners and their families.
Erdogan is cleaning out Kurds, 130,000 fleeing to date. When he clears over a million Kurds he is planning for displacedSyrians, 3.6 million lodged in Turkey which are EU funded.
The EU has clearly stated they won’t advance one cent to Erdogan’s ethnic cleansings and transplantation of millions of displaced people into land on the border cleared of Kurds.
Erdogan dreams, as an emperor, of a Kraina-land between him and his enemies that he can control from his throne, using proxies and displaced people who have a dependency on him for funds and arms, so he can manipulate a border zone in a ‘frozen conflict’ he heats or cools as his ends require.
A despotic tin-pot creates a desert of hostility and calls it a safe zone. And what have we to say to those who lost 11,000 killed fighting IS?
Sorry, you’re stateless, hide in the mountains. Go hide in the narrow places and live on white food. Kindred souls.
This reader's opinion was first published in the print edition of The Irish Examiner on 17 October 2019.