Today's state sponsors of terrorism

Published 08.11.2019 18:43
Updated 20.12.2019 01:33

Unfortunately, some Western states do not even try to hide their sympathy toward terrorist groups, backing them fully

In recent years, the adjective "friendly" has widely been used to characterize certain countries and cities in terms of their various features. Every day new cities or countries are being declared to be animal-friendly, democracy-friendly, refugee-friendly, elder-friendly, children-friendly or eco-friendly.

Today, and especially during the protracted Syrian civil war, we have faced "terror-friendly" states, that is to say, state sponsors of terrorism. The PKK, which has been plaguing Turkey for almost 40 years, the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ), a sophisticated spy ring, and Daesh, which emerged in the model of al-Qaida – all these terrorist groups have targeted Turkey. Although Daesh attacked France and Germany as well, these terrorist organizations have been supported or manipulated most notably by the intelligence organizations of Western powers.

The Syrian civil war has dramatically transformed the traditional paradigm of international relations. I believe that no international relations specialist from the Cold War period could make sense of the last 10 years of the Syrian crisis. The main objective of the U.S. and the Global Coalition against Daesh in Syria has always been ambiguous. In order to keep the Bashar Assad regime alive, Iran has made use of the Hashd al-Shabi, which is as ferocious as Daesh itself. Meanwhile, the powers behind Daesh are still shrouded in mystery.

Traditional wars occurred between the armies of rival countries. Millions of people lost their lives in some of the world's most devastating wars. For instance 40 million people died during World War II. Between the traditional wars and the recent ones, there are fundamental differences. As opposed to traditional wars, where armies of states collided with each other, present-day wars target civilians.

Today, civilian populations have become the true victim of wars. Millions of refugees have been fleeing war zones, thereby disrupting neighboring countries and the world as a whole.

As opposed to traditional war tactics, new wars are technologically-innovative. Instead of regular armies, proxy militia groups constitute the core of wars, as countries prefer not to engage in direct conflicts and terrorist organizations proliferate within the war zone.

Finally, the influence of present-day wars is not restricted with the country in question. Today, wars cause political, economic and cultural disruptions in the whole region and the world as a whole.

As the mentality of war has been transformed, front wars of regular armies have been replaced with irregular wars of militia groups. Such fundamental changes provided the optimum circumstances for the germination and proliferation of terrorist organizations. Instead of cooperating with Turkey, its NATO ally, the U.S. openly supported the PKK and secretly worked with Daesh and FETÖ.

If it is possible to talk about "state sponsors of terrorism" in our present world of irregular wars, and the Western powers now carry this banner.

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