Turkey Contemplates Invoking Article 5 Of NATO

by lizard

When Pogie and I had our recent little spat, he was able to leave on a positive note, saying:

Best of luck to you guys over here. I think I’m going to take my leave for awhile and focus on what matters to me. No doubt you’ll do the same at your place.

I think Pogie is sincere and earnest in writing about what matters to him. Obviously that includes helping get Democrats elected. When I think about some of the legislation that could have passed the last session here in Montana, and the real-life damage it would have done if federal funds had somehow been given back in the name of anti-deficit, ideological purity, it’s hard to argue against supporting Montana Democrats.

For me, one of the topics I keep returning to (with my limited time and knowledge) is foreign policy issues.

Unfortunately my default setting is skepticism when it comes to official lines of reasoning justifying US military involvement around the world, and recently that has put me at odds with other well-meaning people who read and see awful things and want to support ways of stopping it.

Of the more than 200 posts I’ve written in the last year and a half, a few of them examined the counter narrative to the allegedly altruistic aims of using the UN security council to establish a no-fly zone in order to save civilians in Libya.

The fallout from how the US and company exploited the UN resolution to impose regime change in Libya is now being experienced by Syrians, who are suffering under what certainly appears to be a brutal crackdown. But the opposition is by no means innocent, and comprised of a mosaic of actors not fully understood by the west and apartheid Israel, who are yearning for bigger fish to fry.

And by frying fish I mean starting an all out apocalyptic conflagration in the Middle East.

b, the sole blogger @Moon of Alabama, has a new post up speculating on whether or not Turkey’s Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has lost his marbles by floating the idea of invoking NATO’s article 5 over a recent cross-border skirmish:

In a statement that may be interpreted as the harshest response yet to the escalating 13-month-old Syrian crisis, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan for the first time on Wednesday raised the possibility of calling on the NATO military alliance to protect Turkey’s border against incursions by Syrian forces.

Speaking to reporters travelling with him during his official visit to China, Erdoğan said Turkey may consider invoking NATO’s fifth article to protect Turkish national security in the face of increasing tension along the Syrian border. His comments came after four Syrians who fled to Turkey from the violence in Syria were killed by Syrian forces targeting refugees on the Turkish side of the border on Monday.

What does article 5 say you ask? Good Question. It says:

The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.

There is a counter narrative to this recent development, and one person I regularly follow, Pepe Escobar offers a different depiction of refugees fleeing being targeted by Syrian forces. Instead, there is evidence that Syrian forces came under fire by the Free Syrian Army, who may be getting some level of cover from Turkey.

I think this matters because the consequence of an all out regional war breaking out would be cataclysmic. So yeah, I’m going to keep writing about it, even if including the role Democrats play in the war consensus makes some feel uncomfortable.

  1. evdebs

    I should have replied when this was originally posted.

    I read Escobar’s piece, and he seemed be trying to make an equivalency argument, that the Assad regime wasn’t necessarily all that much worse than the opposition.

    This is completely crazy, of course. The Alawite minority has killed some 9,000 Syrians in their insane quest to maintain complete control. There is no equivalency where one side launches regular artillery barrages that have practically leveled large cities, have fired on peaceful protesters, have brutally murdered opponents and dumped the tortured and dismembered bodies of its victims, including children, at the doors of the victims.

    There is no equivalency in a few opponents firing rifles back across the border from Turkey.

    Escobar sees Qatar and Saudi Arabia behind the opposition, but to imagine that distant countries have been a major force in promotion the conflict by supporting rebels seems like a huge stretch.

    The comments on the Asia Times site are interesting, but even more so are the comments on the linked RT story. It looks like every sort of conspiratist, harboring whatever delusion consumes them, have weighed in on the side of Assad.

    • lizard19

      I would appreciate a source to back up your assertion that 9,000 Syrians have been killed.

      I usually provide sources for consideration, because I wouldn’t expect anyone to believe stuff just because I say so. from that link:

      …assuming that the events unfolding in Syria are of the same nature as the ones that rocked the Arab world, and led to the collapse of dictatorships long supported by the West, is also a misreading of reality. The latest April 10 ambush against a Syrian army patrol in the coastal town of Banias is proof that a Jihad-like approach is a force behind the movement demanding reforms. Despite atrocities the regimes in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, and Bahrain perpetrated against freedom demonstrators, there was no significant act of violence against national armies in these countries. More importantly, to be able to conduct such a successful ambush killing nearly 10 troops, one needs to be armed, organized, and well-trained. Indeed, this scenario does not resemble anything we are witnessing in the above cases.

      I’m not saying there is an equivalency between the Assad regime and opposition forces.

      what I am saying is the western narrative of peaceful protesters versus a “crazy” regime is too simplistic, and furthers an agenda that has nothing to do with being concerned about civilian casualties.

      this is geopolitics, all part of the resource wars being waged around the globe. if you think the “activists” haven’t also engaged in committing atrocities, then you are either not paying close enough attention, or you are taking MSM sources as the gospel truth.

  1. 1 Chickens Coming Home to Roost, Scene 42b: SCOTUS Rules 5-4 to gut 4th Amendment with Obama’s Approval « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] Just a quickie here today to tie together Jhwygirl’s recent uncovering of another of Missoula’s nanny state laws and the shrinking 4th Amendment with Lizards ongoing analysis of foreign policy American Imperialism and the democratic party. […]

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