Many U.S. commentators are saying the latest agreement between Turkey and Russia to establish a demilitarized zone in the northern Syrian city of Idlib is just evidence that Russian leader Vladimir Putin has outplayed U.S. President Donald Trump as he did Barrack Obama in assuming control of the regional narrative.
That may be true only to a certain extent. What they do not want to admit is that the Americans have gradually crept into Syria through the back door and have effectively grabbed about one-fourth of the Syrian territory in the east of the country where the oil and gas fields are situated.
The Russians, like the Iranians, were invited to Syria by the Assad regime. For most of us this is not a legitimate alibi as we do not recognize the Damascus administration as the lawful government of Syria. But still Damascus is represented at the United Nations.
Turkey has moved into the northern territories simply because the majority Sunni Arabs of Syria who detest Assad asked Ankara to save them from the wrath of a dictator and also the aggression of terrorists of Daesh and the affiliates of the PKK.
But who invited the Americans? They can't say they came as the guests of the PKK and its affiliates, because even for them the PKK is an illegitimate organization and a terrorist outfit. So in fact the U.S. is actually there as an occupation force and its presence is not legal. It has used the pretext of fighting against Daesh to slip into Syria. It has armed and equipped the terrorists of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its military wing the People's Protection Units (YPG) – all extensions of the PKK terrorist organization, which is waging a violent secessionist campaign in Turkey.
The U.S. knew very well what the PKK is and what it stands for. It knew the PKK is a band of killers that has committed crimes in Turkey and Iraq and is now committing crimes in Syria through the PYD and YPG. Instead of distancing itself from these terrorists, the U.S. has decided to use them in Syria, which is a great scandal.
The U.S. used the YPG and PYD under the name of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to grab one-fourth of Syria including the rich oil and gas fields. So those who think Trump and the Pentagon are the losers in Syria may well be wrong. They are currently at an advantage but the real question is can they hold on to these lands?
Turkey does not want the YPG and the PYD in the east of the Euphrates River. The Russians and the Iranians seem to agree with this.
So the U.S. is trying to hold on to its grip in Syria with some very weak links like the YPG and PYD. We have seen in Afrin how weak these two are and how they crumbled against the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA).
So the Americans should start thinking of alternatives and that means they should sit down with Turkey and talk some real politics instead of just beating around the bush.