Moscow’s counterterrorism efforts in Syria are so efficient that they apparently prompted Turkey to shoot down the Russian Su-24 bomber last month, G. Murphy Donovan, a former US intelligence officer, wrote for the American Thinker.
“How Russian airstrikes in Syria threaten Turkey is not really much of a mystery. Russians were known to be bombing terrorist oil targets south of the Turk border – too effectively it seems,” the analyst asserted.
Daesh, also known as ISIL/The Islamic State, is selling illegal oil to Turkey but the group’s petroleum infrastructure as well as its ability to export oil to foreign markets had been badly affected by Russia’s campaign. Daesh losses are estimated to be around $1.5 million daily.There is another reason for Turkey to be concerned with Moscow’s aerial campaign – separatism.
“The two most effective fighting forces in Syria are ISIL and the Kurds. Turkey fears that a Kurdish led victory over ISIL in Syria and Iraq will underwrite the legitimacy of Kurdistan. Alas, Turkey and ISIL interests on the ground are joined by perfidy,” G. Murphy Donovan explained.
Ankara has long been accused of tacitly supporting extremist groups, which are trying to overthrow Bashar al-Assad. These efforts have been complicated since Russia began to assist Damascus-led forces in their fight against Daesh, al-Nusra Front and the like.
“As with Turkish air strikes against the Kurds, team Obama is content to ignore the ISIS/Ankara axis,” the analyst stated. Interesting fact: The US is backing Kurdish forces in Iraq, since they turned out to be the only ground force capable to stand against the terrorist group.
Nevertheless, the US and some other countries were so bold as to accuse Moscow of targeting so-called moderate Syrian rebels, although many doubt that they exist.
“When the American president says the Russians are bombing anti-Assad ‘moderates,’ he fails to say that these groups are also the same arms merchants, human traffickers, and oil smugglers that finance the Islamic State. Indeed southern Turkey is a haven for Sunni terrorist training, arms depots, sanctuaries, and smuggled oil,” G. Murphy Donovan detailed.
Western capitals decided to turn a blind eye to Turkey’s dealings with Daesh, which begs a question whether they really want to tackle the terrorist group.
“By ignoring the Turkish Trojan horse, Washington and Brussels have traded NATO integrity, and an immigrant invasion, for base rights in a neo-Ottoman bordello. If the goal is to defeat ISIS or Islamism, Russia would make a more reliable wartime ally in NATO today than Turkey,” the analyst asserted.