By Farzad Farhadi 

Afrin war a rude awakening for Kurds 

January 29, 2018

TEHRAN - On January 20, 2018, Turkey and the Free Syrian Army launched an air and ground strike in the Afrin Region of Syria, a Kurdish controlled enclave located northwest of the country.  

The operation, codenamed “Operation Olive Branch,” could be an eye-opening experience and valuable lessons for the Kurds. 
The operation against the Kurds continues and according to the latest news, the Free Syrian Army has gained control over certain areas around Afrin. 

The latest developments in Afrin illustrate that the Kurds have not learned from their past mistakes and have, once again, been duped by the U.S.  The all-out war carried out against Syria seven years ago was aimed to destroy the country’s significant central role in the Middle East.  However, the Syrian government has persevered and with the aid of its allies, has defeated the enemy. Although, for a short while, there appeared to be an end of war in Syria, the U.S. backed terrorist armies refuse to surrender and have been concocting clandestine plans in an effort to continue the war.

The Kurdish people, duped by the U.S. who instigated the war in Syria, should have aligned themselves with the Syrian government when Erdogan initially warned them that there would be consequences if they continued their aggression across Turkey’s borders.  Previously, they were seduced by Masoud Barzani in Iraq who, in the end, betrayed them.  Notwithstanding the fact that U.S., through its operatives, has continually betrayed the Kurdish people, the Kurds in Afrin, once again, opted to side with the U.S.  

According to reports, Russia offered the Kurds protection if they relinquished control of Afrin to Syrian President Bashar Assad's forces, but the ethnic group refused, as they thought they could dominate the areas on the northern borders of Syria through the use of weapons supplied by the U.S.  

In a recent article, the New York Times has said that in all likelihood, Washington will stop backing the Kurdish militia in Syria. Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has demanded that the Kurds return to the region east of the Euphrates River, or else they will lose the support of the U.S.
The recent development in Afrin is a testimony to U.S double standards, taking advantage of its allies to reach its objectives. U.S. allies have seen the consequences of participating in wars instigated by America in various parts of the world.  Yet, they willingly continue to be victimized by U.S. led geopolitical aggression. America’s allies in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and other regions of the world have paid a high price for siding with the U.S., but they should steer away from Washington’s military advances as U.S. intervention will continue for years to come. 

The most significant development in Afrin, as of late, is that the Kurds have called on to Syrian forces for reinforcement. Although some Kurdish news sources deny this new development, field reports have confirmed it. It appears as though the Kurds have finally come to the realization that they will need the assistance of the Syrian army to protect Afrin. 

As it was expected, the U.S. government has not offered reinforcement to the Kurds in Afrin. The White House alleges that they only armed the Kurds to fight ISIS and that Afrin is not strategically significant to the U.S. 

Washington abandoned the Kurds in their fight against Turkey and the Free Syrian Army.  The Kurds, too, lost Russia’s support, who withdrew their troops from the region following the Kurds opposition to the Free Syrian Army in Afrin.  

It appears that the Kurds have had a rude awakening as of late, as they have recently sought reinforcement from the Syrian army now that the Turkish army has withdrawn from combatting Syrian, Russian or American forces.     

The presence of the Syrian army in Afrin is beneficial to the Kurds and the anticipated Kurdish participation in the peace process in Syria, as it can set the ground for the Sochi Summit.   

The fact that Kurds have urged Damascus to intervene and protect Afrin is an important turning point in the Syrian war. This development can also mean the Kurds have abandoned hopes of having an autonomous Kurdish region in northern Syrian. 

Once the Syrian Kurds sense pressure, they urge the Syrian government to intervene and demonstrate support for Syria’s sovereignty.  However, when the U.S. offers them a deal, the page turns quickly and they have a change of heart. It seems that American elements oppose any agreement between Damascus and the Afrin representatives. Kurds appeal to the Syrian government for reinforcement.

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