"Woe to the multitude of many people
27 January 2018: Turkey has been warned in no uncertain terms by the US-led CJTF-OIR Coalition to re-think its declared intent to assault the Syrian city of Manbij. If the Turks fail to heed the warning then they'll find themselves being decimated F-22 Raptors and other Coalition aircraft as well as ground forces. CJTF-OIR spokesman (a/k/a the OIRSpox) Colonel Ryan Dillon told the Washington Free Beacon, "Our forces there (Manbij) are well prepared to defend themselves. We have air coverage over all our troops so we're always prepared to defend ourselves, whether it's from ISIS or any other threat."
It has also come to light via DefenseOne that the 30,000 man "border security force" is not a phrase that originated with the US CENTCOM commander (GEN Joseph Votel). In a December interview with the Associated Press Gen. Votel described the training of local Kurdish and Arabs in northern Syria to defend against a "resurgence of ISIS" in their regions. The AP reporter incorrectly used the phrase "border security force" and Turkey seized upon that as a pretext to launch its invasion of the Aleppo Governorate. Clearly the Turkish operation had been planned over an extended period of time. So here we have a case where the media, the AP in particular, have blood on their hands in giving the Turks a pretext to invade Syria and which may eventually lead to combat between Turkey and NATO and the CJTF-OIR allies in Syria. Anyone taking the AP to task over this? All we hear are crickets.
25 January 2018: The potential for a direct military engagement between NATO allies US and Turkey west of the Euphrates River in the Manbij region of northern Syria was the subject of a warning President Trump gave to President Erdogan yesterday during a phone call between them. According to the White House readout of that conversation, Trump "urged Turkey to exercise caution and to avoid any action that might risk conflict between Turkish and American forces."
The Eschatology Today assessment is that (as a starting point of negotiation) an agreement should be made between the NATO allies which is similar to that of Israel on its Golan border with Syria regarding Hezbollah/Iranian encroachment. Along the Turkish border west of the Euphrates River a minimum 5-mile wide security zone be established where no armed militias would be permitted to operate. This would include all armed militias, but especially the Turkey-supported FSA and the US-supported YPG militias. The zone and border crossings could be secured by joint NATO security forces, such as is the case of the UNDOF forces on the Golan.
Whether or not something like this is achieved remains to be seen. Erdogan may need a way to save face in the wake of his bellicose statements of late and such an agreement might facilitate this objective. What is also clear is that Turkey could not execute its offensive operations in the Aleppo Governorate without Russian forces in Syria standing down and permitting the execution of Operation Olive Branch. What is certain is that the Davos World Economic Forum will be the scene of intense diplomatic efforts in a final attempt to preclude a catastrophe in Syria. Obviously, those efforts are not likely to succeed according to the prophetic texts of Jeremiah and Isaiah.
24 January 2018: The Turks have actually run into fierce resistance from the Afrin Kurds YPG militia. (NOTE: Standing with the Kurds against the Turkish invasion are volunteers from the US, UK, Germany, France, Spain and several other NATO countries and well as some Asian nations. They are standing with the Kurds because the Kurds stood with the US-led Coalition fighting Islamic State.) A couple of days into the operation and the Turks have barely advanced a little more than a few miles into Syrian territory. There's apparently more bark in Erdogan's rhetoric than real bite, at least thus far. Obviously both Arabs and Kurds still have exposed raw nerves due to the oppression they suffered at the hands of their former Ottoman Turk overlords of a century ago. Old wounds reopened.
The bigger update, however, centers on the conflict brewing between Russia and the U.S. over Syria's renewed use of chemical weapons against rebel forces. US SECSTATE Rex Tillerson placed "ultimate responsibility" for the renewed chemical warfare upon Russia, accusing the Russian government of "shielding" the Al-Assad regime from full exposure of its war crimes and crimes against humanity from 2013 to the present. Strong words. This is the kind of thing - in northwestern Syria no less - that could lead to the kind of catastrophe foretold by Jeremiah. The potential for such a catastrophe expands exponentially with each passing hour.
21 January 2018: Turkish artillery and jets bombing the Afrin district of Aleppo Governorate as part of their proclaimed "Operation Olive Branch" have been met by stiff resistance from the Kurds of the YPG militia. This morning the Kurds stuck back at the town of Reyhanli in Turkey's Hatay Province to the west and the town of Kilis to the north with rocket fire. With the Turkish bombardment killing Kurdish civilians, the Kurds decided to return fire in an eye-for-eye fashion upon Turkey itself. Turkish hatred of the Kurdish people is reminiscent of the Turkish hatred of the Armenian people and the resultant genocide of the early 20th Century. Is history repeating itself?
There is also a key distinction to be made in this part of Syria for the benefit of our readers in their understanding of the war. The Free Syrian Army (FSA) here is more correctly identified as the Turkish Free Syrian Army (TFSA), and is not to be confused with the Free Syrian Army operating in other battlefields of the Syrian Civil War. The TFSA was re-branded the Syrian National Army (SNA) by Turkey in May of 2017 during its Operation Euphrates Shield (OES), the purpose of which was to prevent the Kurds of northern Syria from establishing contiguous territory under their control along the length of the Turkish border. Members of the TFSA/SNA are primary Turkomen and Arabs and are without question a proxy force under Turkish government control. They fight against the SDF/YPG within the U.S.-led CJTF-OIR. This would appear to make the life expectancy of Turkish membership within NATO one of very limited duration should things go from bad to worse.
It must be noted that since the start of the Syrian Civil War, this region of Syria has not seen major warfare erupt until yesterday. The relative peace enjoyed by hundreds of thousand of civilian populations on both side of the border came to an abrupt end when Turkey's Islamist warlord Erdogan launched his grossly misnamed 'Operation Olive Branch' at 5 PM local time yesterday. The objective of this Turkish aggression is genocide of the indigenous Kurdish population and the destruction of the US-allied YPG. In sum, Turkey has unilaterally widened the war in Syria.
The U.S. is "very concerned" with Turkey's military invasion and is pressing the Turks hard to limit the scope of Operation Olive Branch, recognizing that it unnecessarily and severely hampers the central goal in the war against the Islamic State. (U.S. State Department press release).
20 January 2018: Northwestern Syria slowly turned into quite the expected conflagration this week thanks to the Islamist warmonger of Turkey, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The U.S. practically begged Erdogan to stand down on his threats to the Kurds (YPG militia) in Afrin.