A terrorist killed 39 innocent people on New Year's and injured scores in an attack at a nightclub in Istanbul frequented by celebrities and the wealthy. Turkey is currently engaged in a comprehensive battle against terrorism and Daesh, the PKK/PYD, Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) and others are well aware that their days of unencumbered scheming are numbered. United in its hate against groups that target its welfare and peace, the Turkish nation will eliminate them no matter what.
Turkey is fighting against Daesh both within and without. Each day brings more developments concerning the unraveling of Daesh's organizational capabilities in Turkey while Operation Euphrates Shield is succeeding in pushing back the terrorist group in Syria. They are losing hundreds of fighters due to Turkey's ongoing assaults on several fronts. Since Aug. 25, the operation has succeeded in killing more than 1,000 Daesh members and several of its leaders. Pushed to a corner, Daesh is lashing out against civilians.
Turkey, as a functioning democracy where people are free to live as they desire, is the most obvious antithesis to the reprehensible ideology Daesh represents. That is exactly why it ordered its adherents to target senior Turkish officials, including President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and called for death to Turkish citizens, which represent a fundamental danger to propagating its warped dogma.
Sunday's strike was not the first it conducted in Turkey. Its previous terrorist acts, those at Atatürk International Airport and in Istanbul's Beşiktaş district and Ankara, Kayseri, Diyarbakır and several more, claimed hundreds of innocent lives across the country. Those who try to link Sunday's attack to the supposed social polarization in Turkey are either oblivious to the danger we are really faced with, or simply trying to sow confusion to cover up their ignorance.
It is no surprise that the group targeted people freely celebrating the New Year.
The attack on Sunday was strategic, trying to exploit what it perceived as social divisions within the country, whether it be ethnic, religious, political or ideological. Its previous attacks were aimed at creating furor against the state among Alevis, Kurds, secularists and other social groups. Those who condemn Turkey's terrorism policy are in danger of unwittingly becoming pawns of terror groups.
Turkey is the only country that has deployed its own soldiers in Syria to take the fight to Daesh's den.
Reeling under heavy assault, Daesh is carrying out attacks against civilian targets in desperation. The same goes for the PKK; having lost significant ground and legitimacy in the southeast, it is now killing civilians by mobilizing its affiliates in Syria and Iraq.
Daesh previously carried out attacks similar to the one in the Istanbul night club in Paris and Orlando. Unfortunately, the French and American response to such attacks was to either conduct ineffective airstrikes or to increase its support to other terrorist groups, such as the PKK's Syrian wing, the Democratic Union Party (PYD).
The Western world seems to be under the delusion that supporting "our terrorists" to hit at "their terrorist" is a policy. Turkey is aware that eliminating terrorist threats necessitates getting one's hands bloody. Such a determined policy entails enduring a cost today to ensure future peace.
While the modus operandi of the recent attack compels us to suspect Daesh as behind the attack, no one should be under the illusion that the terrorist groups Turkey is fighting against are operating separately. Interdependence and unity of purpose among terrorist groups is apparent. Finding nourishment by spreading chaos, these groups feed on each other's violence.
The U.S., by openly supporting the PYD and sheltering the leader of FETÖ, has clearly jumbled its priorities. Western media, while rightly condemning Daesh atrocities, is trying to portray the PKK/PYD as equal opportunity terrorists just because the group allows women to kill the innocent. We can only hope that the incoming Donald Trump administration gets its priorities straight.
It is natural for Turkey to expect support from the world against terrorist groups that are a threat to our common future. Typical statements of condolences no longer suffice. Countries need to make where they stand clear.
Any country that wants to put an end to Daesh attacks on its streets needs to fully back Turkey's counterterrorism operations. With or without support, Turkey is determined to finish off all terrorist threats to its stability. However, no one should expect the Turkish people to forget who was with us during this global struggle and who preferred to let Turkey do the fighting.
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