President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey thought that Sunday’s referendum on a set of amendments to the country’s constitution would allow him to solidify his grip on power, uncontested. It’s not proving as easy as he and his supporters might have hoped.
Despite an uneven playing field, the “yes” campaign in support of the constitutional amendments failed to win with the wide margin that the president expected, and that he believed would legitimize his rule. Mr. Erdogan’s side won with a slim 51 percent. Drastic regime change — like moving from a parliamentary system to a presidential one, with no checks and balances — should normally require a clear national consensus.… Seguir leyendo »
One might wonder how a country that recently survived a bloody coup attempt and multiple terrorist attacks could embark on a military incursion into a neighboring country. Yet this is exactly what Turkey has done.
In the early hours of Wednesday, Turkey sent tanks and warplanes across the border into Syria in a coordinated campaign with Western-backed Syrian opposition fighters to capture the town of Jarabulus, one of the Islamic State’s last strongholds on the Turkish border, which the Foreign Ministry had recently vowed to “cleanse” of the militant group.
But the operation seems to be aimed more at containing the territorial ambitions of the Syrian Kurds, which Turkey sees as its primary enemy in Syria.… Seguir leyendo »
Turkey’s nightmare is coming true.
Not only is the battle for Aleppo sending tens of thousands of desperate people fleeing toward Turkey, but the fall of the rebel-held city would deliver a major blow to Ankara’s Syria policy.
Syrian government forces, backed by Russian air power, have cut off the last major supply route to rebels in Aleppo. The route, known as the Azaz corridor, links rebel-held eastern Aleppo with Turkey.
If the corridor falls, the rebels could lose Aleppo — and the entire Turkey-Syria border could fall under the control of forces that Ankara hates: the forces of President Bashar al-Assad’s Russian-backed regime, and the Kurds.… Seguir leyendo »