An impending Turkish ground offensive, according to the commander of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, will devastate northern Syria and sabotage the war against the Islamic State. He is pleading with President Joe Biden to put an end to it.
Gen. Mazloum Abdi claimed in an interview with POLITICO that the US hasn’t done enough to stop Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoan from following out his threats to launch a cross-border operation in retribution for last week’s fatal explosion in Istanbul. He pointed out that during his presidential campaign, Joe Biden pledged that he would not abandon the Kurds, unlike then-President Donald Trump, who did so in October 2019 when he withdrew American troops from northern Syria, enabling Turkey to conduct a deadly operation that resulted in the displacement of 300,000 people. He called on the top levels of the U.S. government to increase pressure on Ankara. “So far, statements that have been put out are not enough to stop the Turkish plans to launch new operations against us.” His remarks come days after Turkey carried out a slew of devastating airstrikes in northern Syria and Iraq as reprisal for the attack in Istanbul. On Tuesday, Erdoan pledged to “hunt out” the “terrorists,” a reference to the Kurdish militia he believes was behind the attack in Istanbul on November 13 that left six people dead and more than 80 others injured. Kurdish organizations have denied being involved.