The ministerial meeting of the Global Coalition to Counter ISIS held in Washington, DC was an important milestone on the path to the Trump team’s mission to fully defeat the would-be caliphate in Iraq and Syria. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson opened the proceedings by unequivocally stating that the ISIS threat would be the first priority of the new administration, and that in achieving that overarching objective, the United States would be invested in securing the stability of areas conquered from ISIS. Tillerson correctly identified Syria as a priority for stabilization after ISIS.
The recent meeting in Antalya between the US, Russian, and Turkish chiefs of staff kindled unequivocal hopes that a united front would finally materialize to advance the struggle against the terrorist Islamic State (IS). However, leaked information from the US later showed that the plan to fight IS that the Pentagon had drafted for President Trump did not include such aims.
Only hours after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued a bloodcurdling warning about terror attacks against European citizens, four people lay dead on the streets of London. That death toll may rise further because several of those injured in the attack this week in the British capital are in critical condition, fighting for their lives...
Turkey has been a NATO ally since 1952, and US aircraft have used Incirlik Air Base in the south during the operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. The base is home to a stockpile of US tactical nuclear weapons. A perusal of media reports leads to the conclusion that Turkey and NATO are heading for a major rift or even a breakup – a problem the North Atlantic alliance hasn’t experienced in its nearly seven decades of existence.
As the diplomatic squabble between Turkey and the Netherlands continues to fester, concerns are raised about whether — and to what extent — the tensions will harm bilateral relations, particularly in economics where the two countries have robust trade and investment connections.
Turkey’s relationship with the EU and NATO appears to have plumbed new lows. Ankara’s agreement with the EU to help hold back a flood of migrants is about to end. On March 13, Deputy Turkish Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus announced the freeze amid an escalating row over Turkish officials' access to the Netherlands. Another Deputy Prime Minister, Nurettin Canikli, also said steps would be taken to reevaluate Ankara’s agreement with Brussels to prevent refugees and migrants from crossing into the EU after they transit Turkey...
The troubled relations between Turkey and the European Union clearly demonstrate the futility of Brussels’ attempts to build a working model of multiculturalism in Europe. The main thing here is the objective impossibility of combining two mutually exclusive aims: getting the refugee crisis under control, including by working with Muslims, chiefly the many Turkish communities in EU countries, while at the same time opposing the policies of the current Turkish government headed by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
The extraordinary war of words erupting between Turkey and the European Union is pushing already strained relations to breaking point. Ankara has banned all Dutch diplomats from its territory after the Netherlands banished Turkish ministers from holding political rallies, while deploying heavy-handed policing to break up the rallies...
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s visit to Russia came amidst some seismic shifts in international relations. Ideas that were taken for granted only yesterday are collapsing, and new alliances are emerging.
Winners and losers are emerging in what may be the final phase of the Syrian civil war as anti-Isis forces prepare for an attack aimed at capturing Raqqa, the de facto Isis capital in Syria. Kurdish-led Syrian fighters say they have seized part of the road south of Raqqa, cutting Isis off from other its territory further east.