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Old 07-10-2007, 11:24 AM   #1
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Iraq fears Turkish troop buildup

Turkey has amassed 140,000 troops ono the Iraq border for a possible assault on Kurdish rebels, said Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zabari. The Pentagon downplayed the claim, but Turkey confirmed it has drawn up plans to strike rebel camps in Iraq amid a surge in attacks by separatists. Zebari also warned his government would collapse if the U.S. pulled out too quickly.
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Old 07-10-2007, 01:07 PM   #2
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OOooooh sounds tense
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Old 07-10-2007, 01:19 PM   #3
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a pre-emptive strike, perhaps?

i wonder if the Kurds have WMDs that are a threat to Istanbul.

if so, i say STRIKE HARD STRIKE FAST NO MERCY!
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Old 07-10-2007, 04:54 PM   #4
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another confirmation as to why the United States must continue its presence in Iraq. If the US were not there, the Turks would have already taken the Kurdish controlled northern Iraq, then Kurdistan would be forced to protect its kind, and that is just the north.

If we fall out now, there is just too much at risk. We would be right back the next year helping out someone else w/ troops.
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Old 07-10-2007, 04:57 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
a pre-emptive strike, perhaps?

i wonder if the Kurds have WMDs that are a threat to Istanbul.

if so, i say STRIKE HARD STRIKE FAST NO MERCY!
That's your private strategy either, isn't it?


If they entered and started a war with the Kurds we could pack things up.
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Old 07-10-2007, 04:58 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Vincent Vega


That's your private strategy either, isn't it?


If they entered and started a war with the Kurds we could pack things up.
how so? They are both our allies.
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Old 07-10-2007, 05:20 PM   #7
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That's one problem. Who will we step in for?
We would have to support the Kurds, as they are the ones being attacked. But would we point our weapons against the Turks, a close and important ally of ours, and member of the Nato?

And it would destabilize the more or less most stable region in Iraq.
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Old 07-10-2007, 05:22 PM   #8
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Originally posted by Vincent Vega
That's one problem. Who will we step in for?
We would have to support the Kurds, as they are the ones being attacked. But would we point our weapons against the Turks, a close and important ally of ours, and member of the Nato?

And it would destabilize the more or less most stable region in Iraq.
yes, so how would you expect us to leave? if we stay there we can be a deterrent to turkey and try and help the situation.
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Old 07-10-2007, 06:53 PM   #9
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"If they entered and started a war with the Kurds we could pack things up."

This sentence basically defines a hypothetical reaction of the US responding to a Turkish invasion, saying in the subjunctive "could pack things up".

Here, the US is in Iraq, like normal, then action: Turkey invades northern Iraq. Reaction: We've lost everything, it's broken.

Nowhere did I imply that I would favor a withdrawal of US troops in that statement.
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Old 07-10-2007, 09:46 PM   #10
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Originally posted by struckpx

how so? They are both our allies.
Yeeaah, barely. You don't remember the start of the war and US issues with Turkey?
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:10 PM   #11
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I don't think Turkey should ultimately take military action against Northern Iraq - but should go all the way to the brink of it.

The Turkish public is not going to tolerate PKK operating out of Northern Iraq with impunity, just as US didn't tolerate Al Qaeda operating out of Afghanistan. At this point it would not be pre-emptive war, it would be reactive war, since over the course of the last month, the Turkish military was attacked almost everyday by PKK and suffered casualities similar to what US suffered in Iraq within the same time period. US doesn't do anything about it, Iraqi Kurds don't do anything about it, but something has to be done by someone.

A precedent was with Syria. Syrian government used to patronize PKK, offering asylum to its leader in Damascus and allowing PKK camps within its northern border, in the 1990s. Turkey objected, nothing happened. That is, until the Turkish military was amassed in the Syrian border and Turkey threatened war unless Syrian patronage of PKK was brought to an end. In about a week, all PKK presence in Syria came to an end. So, it works.

Turkey should put military action on the table - make a credible threat to the Iraqi government, until it brings the PKK presence in N. Iraq to an end. You know what they say, you can get more with a kind word and a gun, than just with a kind word.

If Turkey were to actually invade, it would probably be a disaster for both sides. The Turkish military would be bogged down in an unfamiliar terrain, suffer losses, but ultimately win. But the real question is, then what? We might end up in the same situation US is in, which would suck.

I don't think we should invade, but do everything just short of it.
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:14 PM   #12
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An update:

Turkey boosts troops at Iraqi border: sources

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/turkey_ir...882nY39M7tfLkA

By Paul de Bendern Fri Jul 13, 4:50 PM ET

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) - Turkey's army has boosted troop levels in the restive southeast to more than 200,000, most of them stationed along the border with Iraq, security sources told Reuters on Friday.
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Those sources, who declined to be named, said the unusually large buildup, which includes tanks, heavy artillery and aircraft, was part of a security crackdown on Kurdish rebels hiding in southeast Turkey and northern Iraq.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates dismissed the estimate of 200,000 troops, saying it was too high.

"I have not seen anything that would indicate there are numbers of Turkey's soldiers along the border of that size," Gates told reporters in Washington.

The Pentagon has disputed reports of increased Turkish troop levels for days. The top U.S. general, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Peter Pace, said Turkey has the capability to fight the rebels inside Iraq without boosting troop levels.

"The truth of the matter is that the Turkish armed forces on their side of the border have always had sufficient forces to be able to take actions without having to be reinforced," Pace said.

NATO-member Turkey has refused to rule out a possible cross-border operation to crush up to 4,000 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels believed to be based in mountains in northern Iraq, despite opposition from Washington and Baghdad.

The military General Staff in Ankara was not immediately available for comment on troop numbers. It usually does not release such figures.

Tensions along the border have soared in recent months following an upsurge in attacks across Turkey that Ankara blames on PKK militants. More than 200 Turkish soldiers and PKK rebels have been killed since the start of the year, a Turkish human rights association said on Friday.

Armed forces chief General Yasar Buyukanit has repeatedly urged the government to allow an incursion into Iraq to target PKK militants. Those statements have drawn warnings from the head of the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq that Kurds would fight back if attacked.

Washington, while naming the PKK a terrorist group, fears any major operation by Turkey in northern Iraq could anger Iraqi Kurdish allies and stoke wider conflict in a relatively peaceful region of the war-torn country.

But U.S. and Iraqi forces have been unable to clamp down on the PKK because they are stretched fighting insurgents elsewhere in Iraq. Both Washington and Baghdad have called for diplomatic means to calm tensions with Turkey.

PRESSURE MOUNTING

Sources close to Turkey's ruling AK Party say the Turkish government has been reluctant to push for a cross-border operation because it fears the move could rattle the economy ahead of parliamentary elections on July 22.

Ahmet Birsin, editor of Turkish Kurdish local television channel Gun, said people in the region were very worried. "We want peace not more violence," he said.

But amid national public anger over the deaths, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan has hinted parliament could be recalled to approve an operation.

Analysts say the tough talk by the armed forces and the government is partly driven by domestic politics amid rising nationalism in the country.

The armed forces usually boost troop levels in the mainly Kurdish southeast region in the spring when rebels cross the mountains into Turkey from Iraq to carry out attacks.

But security forces said the current buildup was larger than normal. One source said troop levels in Sirnak province were as high as 50,000 compared with 10,000-20,000 normally.

An unusually high number of military convoys have been seen making their way to the border. One Reuters reporter said he saw heavy artillery and tanks being transported on trains.

Security sources said a wide-ranging clampdown in the region -- including security zones limiting movement of civilians -- had put the PKK on the defensive, limiting their movements and forcing them to use remote-controlled bombs to attack soldiers rather than risking close combat.

More than 30,000 people have been killed in fighting between Turkish security forces and the PKK since the separatist rebels launched their armed campaign for an independent homeland in mainly Kurdish southeast Turkey in 1984.

(Additional reporting Kristin Roberts in Washington)
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Old 07-16-2007, 02:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511
a pre-emptive strike, perhaps?

i wonder if the Kurds have WMDs that are a threat to Istanbul.

if so, i say STRIKE HARD STRIKE FAST NO MERCY!
You forgot the NO QUESTIONS ASKED part.

And the "if you ask questions we will breach secrecy, out your wife's covert identity, claim heads will roll, and pardon the only person responsible who got caught" part.

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