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Putin's Blitz Leaves Washington Rankled and Confused

By       Message Mike Whitney     Permalink
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Reprinted from Counterpunch

From youtube.com/watch?v=JcBbAbQKBeE: Obama and Putin UN speeches over Syria Showdown
Obama and Putin UN speeches over Syria Showdown
(Image by YouTube)
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On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin delivered a blistering critique of US foreign policy to the UN General Assembly.

On Tuesday, Barack Obama shoved a knife in Putin's back. This is from Reuters:

"France will discuss with its partners in the coming days a proposal by Turkey and members of the Syrian opposition for a no-fly zone in northern Syria, French President Francois Hollande said on Monday...

"French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius 'in the coming days will look at what the demarcation would be, how this zone could be secured and what our partners think,' Hollande told reporters on the sidelines of the annual United Nations General Assembly...

"Hollande said such a proposal could eventually be rubber-stamped with a U.N. Security Council resolution that 'would give international legitimacy to what's happening in this zone.'"(France, partners to discuss northern Syria "safe zone": Hollande, Reuters)

Hollande is a liar and a puppet. He knows the Security Council will never approve a no-fly zone. Russia and China have already said so. And they've explained why they are opposed to it, too. It's because they don't want another failed state on their hands like Libya, which is what happened last time the US and NATO imposed a no-fly zone.

But that's beside the point. The real reason the no-fly zone issue has resurfaced is because it was one of the concessions Obama made to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for the use of Incirlik airbase. Washington has kept the terms of that deal secret, but Hollande has let the cat out of the bag.

So who put sock-puppet Hollande up to this no-fly zone nonsense?

Why, the Obama administration, of course. Does anyone seriously believe that Hollande is conducting his own independent policy in Syria? Of course not. Hollande is just doing what he's been told to do, just like he did when he was told to scotch the Mistral deal that cost France a whopping $1.2 billion. Washington and NATO didn't like the idea that France was selling state-of-the-art helicopter carriers to arch-rival Putin, so they ordered Hollande to put the kibosh on the deal. Which he did, because that's what puppets do; they obey their masters. Now he's providing cover for Obama so the real details of the Incirlik agreement remain off the public's radar. That's why we say, Obama shoved a knife in Putin's back, because, ultimately, the no-fly zone damages Russia's interests in Syria.

The significance of the Reuters article cannot be overstated. It suggests that there was a quid pro quo for the use of Incirlik, and that Turkey's demands were accepted. Why is that important?

Because Turkey had three demands:

1--Safe zones in north Syria (which means that Turkey would basically annex a good portion of Syrian sovereign territory.)

2--A no-fly zone (which would allow either Turkish troops, US Special Forces or US-backed jihadi militants to conduct their military operations with the support of US air cover.)

3--A commitment from the US that it will help Turkey remove Assad.

Did Obama agree to all three of these demands before Erdogan agreed to let the USAF use Incirlik?

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Mike is a freelance writer living in Washington state.


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