Turkey Moves to Close All Gates at Border With Syria

On 25 March 2015 NEC-SE Posted Another Warning to Assyrian Leaders and People in Syria and Iraq — Time is Running Out!

In that post we stated: “With clearing operations in Mosul reportedly planned for April and a general broadening and intensification of the Shia-Sunni war taking place, it is likely that foreign powers that have supported the various actors and governments in the region will be pulled into the conflict at both the tactical and operational levels . . . . If and when that happens, Assyrians in the Hasakah and Al-Shaddady Syria will be in the epicenter of the conflict. Unfortunately for them, a few Assyrian leaders who have absolutely no understanding of the region and how the battlefield is shaping and changing are still “representing” the Assyrian community and are still being given a chance to speak and make decisions on its behalf.”

Turkey, by closing its border with Syria, has been pulled into the conflict at both the tactical and operational levels. Previously Assyrians living in the Khabur River Valley in Syria had hoped and tried to find refuge in the west through Turkey when ISIL forces overran their villages. But with the closing of the border Assyrians must now either flee through ISIL-controlled territories into western Syria or Lebanon or stay put in Hasakah and Al-Shaddady amidst the fighting.

Furthermore, Turkey now has possibly 60 to 90 days to determine whether closing the border will still allow them the regional influence and control they need over northern Syria and Iraq to be a regional hegemony and thus preventing further Iranian influence and further Kurdish territorial expansion within and along its southern boarders. If closing the borders does not achieve this aim you may be assured that Turkey will be forced to take military action in the KRG footprint and in northern Syria to create a security or buffer zone along key terrain against regional competitors, (Iran), and to ensure that fighting does not spill over into southern turkey.

With the closing of the boarder and the fight intensifying in Yemen, Jordan could find itself running out of options and consider sending ground forces into Syria over the next 30 days–if the clearing operations for Mosul scheduled for early April start as planned. From a tactical standpoint it would appear that the first place Jordan would need to introduce forces would be the key terrain and cities in the Khabur River Valley. The objective in doing so would be to make Al-Shaddady and Hasakah what we in the Army call a “kill sack” to contain ISIS forces in Syria and within key cities to include the ISIL capital city of Al-Raqqah.

With the “Assyrian leadership” turning over the names of Assyrian volunteers to the Kurds, it becomes necessary to ask whether those fighters will defend the KRG against a possible Turkish military expansion into the KRG. If the answer is yes, then the Assyrian leaders who gave those names to the Kurds need and should be summarily expelled from the Assyrian community forever.

With Jordan possibly being forced to introduce ground forces into Syria we must also ask whether these so-called Assyrian leaders have the capability and capacity to understand the battlefield array of the various forces and whether they are capable of leading the nation during a time of war.

It should be noted that some of these men who call themselves the “men of action” created a police force to deal with this crises–a police force that received a mere four weeks’ training. These same men have now gone to Syria chasing possible federal money by attempting to create another police force in Syria. This amounts to a direct slap in the face of the Assyrian military, which has fought so hard and valiantly against the enemy in the Khabur River Valley battles.

NEC-SE 30 March 2015

After maintaining an open-door policy through the four years of civil war in neighboring Syria, Turkey has begun shutting out refugees amid fears of a possible terrorist attack.