Tag: Kurds

Desperate Pleas to Free Women and Children From ISIS Camps in Syria

CANBERRA, Australia — When Kamalle Dabboussy learned this month that President Trump was removing troops from northeastern Syria, he pulled over in his car and wept. For months, Mr. Dabboussy has been lobbying the Australian government to remove his daughter and three grandchildren from a detention camp for relatives of Islamic State fighters. Now, he […]

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U.S. Withdrawal From Syria Gathers Speed, Amid Accusations of Betrayal

QAMISHLI, Syria — A long convoy of United States troops crossed into Iraq from Syria early Monday, accelerating a withdrawal of American forces from northern Syria that set the stage for the Turkish invasion of Kurdish-controlled land. More than 100 American military vehicles left Syrian Kurdish territory in the early hours of the morning, according […]

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Erdogan’s Ambitions Go Beyond Syria. He Says He Wants Nuclear Weapons.

WASHINGTON — Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, wants more than control over a wide swath of Syria along his country’s border. He says he wants the Bomb. In the weeks leading up to his order to launch the military across the border to clear Kurdish areas, Mr. Erdogan made no secret of his larger ambition. […]

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Trump Said to Favor Leaving a Few Hundred Troops in Eastern Syria

WASHINGTON — President Trump is leaning in favor of a new Pentagon plan to keep a small contingent of American troops in eastern Syria, perhaps numbering about 200, to combat the Islamic State and block the advance of Syrian government and Russian forces into the region’s coveted oil fields, a senior administration official said on […]

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Trump Takes Incoherence and Inhumanity and Calls It Foreign Policy

It was just five years ago that an American president, faced with a crisis on Syria’s border, acted decisively and honorably. Barack Obama responded with airstrikes and a rescue operation in 2014 when the Islamic State started a genocide against members of the Yazidi sect, slaughtering men and forcing women and girls into sexual slavery. […]

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Trump’s Gut, and the Gutting of American Credibility

LONDON — President Trump has given a master class in the unhappy link between his “gut” and the gutting of American credibility. His flippancy over the fate of the Kurds in northern Syria has been criminal in its disregard for human life, America’s friends and American interests. From Trump’s sort-of green light to Turkey’s assault […]

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Kurds’ Sense of Betrayal Compounded by Empowerment of Unsavory Rivals

DOHUK, Iraq — The United States had encouraged its Kurdish allies to dismantle their defenses in northern Syria, saying it would make it easier to assure Turkey that the Kurds posed no threat. So in recent months, according to three American officials involved, the Kurds blew up tunnels and destroyed trenches, leaving themselves vulnerable as […]

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I Joined the Army to Prevent Genocide, Not to Pave the Way for It

Video The U.S. withdrawal from northern Syria is immoral and un-American, says this national guard captain. In the Video Op-Ed above, Alan Kennedy, a captain in the Colorado Army National Guard who served this summer in northern Syria, condemns President Trump’s decision to fully withdraw American troops from the area and abandon our Kurdish allies […]

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Fighting Continues in Syria, Hours After Cease-Fire Deal

ISTANBUL — Fighting continued in northern Syria between Turkish and Syrian Kurdish fighters on Friday morning, casting further doubt on the feasibility of a cease-fire announced on Thursday by Vice President Mike Pence and Turkish officials. The cease-fire deal had already amounted to a near victory for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, who appears […]

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Turkey’s Victory Over Donald Trump

President Trump’s decision to withdraw 1,000 American troops from Syria without consulting any aides, experts or allies, and without any warning to America’s Kurdish comrades in arms, whom he placed in mortal danger, has provided chilling evidence of the danger posed by his chronic inability to appreciate a president’s responsibilities. Mr. Trump, as he always […]

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Trump Officials Press for a Cease-Fire After Turkish Incursion in Syria

ANKARA, Turkey — Top Trump administration officials tried on Thursday to persuade Turkey’s president to accept a cease-fire in northern Syria, a position he had already rejected even before they departed Washington, as a Turkish offensive against American-allied Kurdish fighters threatened to fuel Syria’s long civil war. Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of State […]

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A Foreseen Calamity in Syria

Listen and subscribe to our podcast from your mobile device: Via Apple Podcasts | Via RadioPublic | Via Stitcher The presence of U.S. troops in northern Syria was designed to protect America’s allies and keep its enemies there in check. President Trump’s unilateral withdrawal from the region quickly, and predictably, unraveled a tenuous peace on […]

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Dems Say Trump Has a ‘Meltdown’ After House Rebuke of His Syria Policy; Pelosi Says He Needs Prayer

Maybe it was seeing House Republicans give him the thumbs-down on his pullout game in Syria that pushed him over the edge, but Donald Trump reportedly had a “meltdown” while meeting Wednesday with Democratic congressional leadership after the vote. As CNN reports: “He was insulting, particularly to [House Speaker Nancy Pelosi]. She kept her cool […]

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Bipartisan House Majority Condemns Trump for Syria Withdrawal

WASHINGTON — The House on Wednesday delivered a bipartisan condemnation of President Trump’s decision to withdraw American forces just inside Syria’s border, registering broad opposition in Congress to a move that has thrown the region into bloody chaos and unraveled Middle East policy. Republicans and Democrats banded together to approve a resolution opposing Mr. Trump’s […]

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The World Condemns Erdogan’s War on Kurds. But Turkey Applauds.

ISTANBUL — A raft of new American sanctions. An embargo on European arms sales. The indictment of a state-owned Turkish bank. Threats to isolate Turkey within NATO. A rise in global sympathy for the Kurdish cause. And the Syrian Army back in northern Syria. The problems keep escalating for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey, […]

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The Way Forward in Syria

ISTANBUL — The sudden decision by President Trump to endorse Turkey’s move to send its troops into Syria and pull out most of the American forces posted there seems to have shocked the country’s political and military establishment. American analysts and policymakers see events of the past week as largely benefiting Russia, the Syrian government, […]

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Turkey-Kurd Conflict ‘Has Nothing to Do With Us,’ Trump Says

WASHINGTON — President Trump on Wednesday distanced the United States from the conflict between Turkey and the Kurds in Syria, saying that the conflict “has nothing to do with us.” Mr. Trump, speaking to reporters alongside the Italian president, said the American soldiers he had ordered to pull back, and who had been fighting with […]

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Turkey Urges Kurdish Fighters to Lay Down Their Arms and Leave

DOHUK, Iraq — President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey called on Wednesday for Kurdish fighters battling his troops in northeastern Syria to lay down their weapons and withdraw from the border area “this very night.” Resisting Western pressure to halt the operation, Mr. Erdogan also requested international support for his country’s battle against Kurdish fighters […]

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Kurds in Syria Were Sold Out by President Trump, 2020 Democrats Say

It was an unusual juxtaposition for Democrats — calling a Republican president weak militarily. That’s how the contenders for the party’s nomination framed the recent withdrawal of American troops from northern Syria under President Trump, who they said during Tuesday night’s debate had created turmoil with his impulsive foreign policy decision making. “It’s been the […]

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The U.S. Turned Syria’s North Into a Tinderbox. Then Trump Lit a Match.

To understand why President Trump’s withdrawal from Syria has unleashed such violence, it helps to see this moment as the culmination of a problem that has been building since the conflict began. In the war’s first days, northern Syria’s large Kurdish population effectively seceded and, later, came to control the area. The war’s many actors, […]

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Why Are U.S. Nuclear Bombs Still in Turkey?

The American relationship with Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey has been fraught for half a decade, but never this bad. Last week, American troops were intentionally targeted by Turkish artillery units in Northern Syria as Erdogan’s forces advanced and President Donald Trump ordered the U.S. into a unilateral withdrawal. The Pentagon sternly warned that Turkey’s troops […]

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Russia Savors U.S. Missteps in Syria, and Seizes Opportunity

MOSCOW — These have been disastrous weeks for American foreign policy, a popular presenter on Russia’s state television told viewers on Sunday night with an I-told-you-so smirk. The United States essentially turned its back on Ukraine amid the impeachment inquiry, TV host Dmitri Kiselyov said in his marquee weekly show. Then, Washington abandoned the Syrian […]

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Kurdish Militia Fights Back on Syrian Border

CEYLANPINAR, Turkey — Kurdish-led fighters in Syria attempted on Tuesday to retake the strategic border town of Ras al-Ain from Turkish-led forces, as Kurdish and Syrian government troops sought to repel a Turkish incursion in northern Syria. The Kurdish counteroffensive came as Syrian government troops were deployed inside the northern city of Manbij, a Syrian […]

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