Articles > > Sudden Collapse

Articles - Addostour - Date: 2019-10-15
By: Oraib Al Rantawi

All of a sudden, the SDF's (Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces') defenses rapidly faltered and collapsed.
Even Ankara, obsessed with the arrogance and vainglory of its power, did not expect such an outcome. The hasty withdrawal of U.S. troops from their border posts seemed to have worked. Social media videos show rogue militia operatives executing Kurdish civilians, politicians, and journalists, which has accelerated the pace of collapse and triggered the largest wave of mass displacement since the Syrian crisis broke eight years ago. (A quarter of a million Syrians have fled their homes and villages in just five days).
 
The invading Turkish army and its proxies' breakthroughs have forced the SDF and SDC (Syrian Kurdish Democratic Council) to forget any remaining hesitation and swallow their reservations about meetings between Damascus, Qamishli, Aleppo, and Hmeimim. They now only have two options: To die at the hands of the Turks, or open Rojava's [Kurdish Northern Syria's] gates to the Syrian army and security forces. The situation can brook no more procrastination and stalling. Death awaits around the corner, and any delay will have disagreeable consequences.
 
Without firing a single shot or shedding a drop of blood, the Syrian army has entered areas that have been impenetrable to it for more than four or five years, and it has even been received with widespread public warmth, as broadcast by both pro- and anti-Damascus media. Even in its rosiest dreams, it could never have occurred to Damascus that its army could reach the areas East of the Euphrates with their abundance of water, oil, gas, cotton, and inhabitants in such a manner, without a fight or marathon negotiations. Trump appears to have offered up about a third of Syria's area and nearly a quarter of its population on a silver platter to his adversaries in Moscow, Tehran, Damascus, and Beirut's Southern Dahiyeh [Hezbollah].
 
For his part, the Russian mastermind [President Putin] has exhibited shrewdness that is only matched by his extraordinary strategic patience. He has long managed the battles on the ground, and he is now the one who sets the pace, delineates the limits of other interventions and their maps of influence, and manages highly complex negotiations behind the scenes to reconcile the conflicting interests of the Kurds, Damascus, and Ankara, while keeping his eye on the goal of avoiding any slippage into a direct military confrontation between Syria and Turkey. To the former, he offers gifts wholesale and retail, and to the latter, copious understanding of its security concerns and fears.
 
The U.S. withdrawal from Syria, which the Pentagon hoped would be regulated, has left Washington's adversaries in a state of euphoria and its European allies in a state of confusion and loss. As for its Arab allies, Vladimir Putin has rendered them irrelevant by moving in to fill Washington's vacuum, not only in Syria's Northeast, but throughout the region as a whole. They are gripped by uncertainty towards Washington, and are facing a moment of serious reflection where they must think outside the box when it comes to the need to strike a sober balance in Arab relations with the emerging global poles.
 
Not far from the Northeast, Russia continues its intensive qualitative strikes against Nusra Front targets in Idlib and its countryside, while Syrian military operations against Tahrir ash-Sham [Nusra-led salafi coalition] have been invigorated by a tremendous boost in morale, prompting Damascus to set its sights on imminent operations in Ma'arat al-Nu'man, Jisr al-Shughour, Jericho, and Idlib itself. A moment of strategic breakthrough and transformation has come upon the region unexpectedly, and without delay. It promises to overturn equations, balances of power, calculations, maps, and wagers.
 
And the biggest losers? They are: Washington, which has lost its credibility and its eligibility to lead 'a new [anti-Iran Gulf Arab/Israel] Middle East alliance', Netanyahu, whose idea of an unholy Washington-led alliance between the 'moderate' Arabs and Israel to confront Tehran is evaporating before his eyes, and above all, the Kurds, who have lost their state project and dream, and have proven for the thousandth time that they will never learn from their mistakes.