The Middle East - bOUTeflika

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  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited February 14

    At the start of 'Olive Branch', my Facebook feed was flooded with posts screeching, "The Putin(tm) just asked Turkey to invade Syria! Wake up, sheeple!" Ultimately, I mostly blame myself for having those people as Facebook friends. Before 2018, most of them couldn't have found Syria on a map with an atlas.

    Synthesis on
    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • JusticeforPlutoJusticeforPluto Total Goober Registered User regular
    Synthesis wrote: »

    At the start of 'Olive Branch', my Facebook feed was flooded with posts screeching, "The Putin(tm) just asked Turkey to invade Syria! Wake up, sheeple!" Ultimately, I mostly blame myself for having those people as Facebook friends. Before 2018, most of them couldn't have found Syria on a map with an atlas.

    Lol. Yes, Putin asked a NATO member to invade one of his only allies in the region.

  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    Mubarak is dead.

    Ninety-one years old, just had surgery about a month ago, probably no foul play, just an old man who couldn't recover after that.

    Does it matter now? Probably not. But there it is.

  • Jealous DevaJealous Deva Registered User regular
    https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/russia-deploys-warships-syria-coast-after-turkey-loses-33-soldiers-n1144656

    Looks like Russia is openly shooting at Turkish troops and deploying naval assets to Syria, and Turkey is freaking out about their Molotov-Ribbentrop pact falling through.

    For what it’s worth, Russia claims the Turks did not comply with an agreement that they were required to notify Russia of their troop positions, and furthermore claims that the Russian airplanes that bombed the Turkish soldiers weren’t even in the area.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    I bet that they absolutely knew they were there

    I bet they also weren't supposed to be there

    God this war is weird

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  • KrieghundKrieghund Registered User regular
    Pretty much the only people Russia cares about bombing would be us, and only because they know that they'd take real casualties because of it. Anybody else, yeah, better keep an eye on the sky.

  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    So, Erdogan is very much unhappy that NATO is not supporting his right to just conquer parts of Syria because he feels like it, so he decided to get even:
    ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey has decided to no longer stop Syrian refugees from reaching Europe by land and sea, a senior Turkish official told Reuters on Thursday, in anticipation of the imminent arrival of refugees from Syria’s Idlib where nearly a million have been displaced.

    Turkish police, coast guard and border security officials have been ordered to stand down, the Turkish official added. Earlier on Thursday, a local Turkish governor said an attack on Turkish military in Idlib killed nine soldiers.

  • ZibblsnrtZibblsnrt Registered User regular
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

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  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

    Well, there's that. Either governments are willing to accept refugees OR they are using guns to make the migrant waves go away, so is not a threat as effective as Erdogan believes.

  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    The next move would be to close the Hellespont as response, but I believe that everybody saw through him and realized that he doesn't have the balls to do it.

    JaysonFour
  • honoverehonovere Registered User regular
    Turkey ist escalating the situation in Idlib after 33 of their soldiers got killed there a few days ago and has at the same time opened it's borders to the EU for refugees. Some heavy confrontations at the Greek border already.

    https://www.dw.com/en/greek-police-fire-teargas-at-migrants-on-turkish-border/a-52582096
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/29/erdogan-says-border-will-stay-open-as-greece-tries-to-repel-influx

  • KrieghundKrieghund Registered User regular
    Who exactly is he trying to pressure with that move, the EU? To do what? Back him up against Russia? Not going to happen, and makes both sides hate him.

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  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

    Well, there's that. Either governments are willing to accept refugees OR they are using guns to make the migrant waves go away, so is not a threat as effective as Erdogan believes.

    On "the most predictable outcome ever":

    Liz Sly is a WaPo reporter.

    Guess what most of the comments are saying.

    TicaldfjamIncenjucar
  • RedTideRedTide Registered User regular
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

    Well, there's that. Either governments are willing to accept refugees OR they are using guns to make the migrant waves go away, so is not a threat as effective as Erdogan believes.

    On "the most predictable outcome ever":

    Liz Sly is a WaPo reporter.

    Guess what most of the comments are saying.

    Greek guys
    Greek guys
    Uber alles?

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  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    RedTide wrote: »
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

    Well, there's that. Either governments are willing to accept refugees OR they are using guns to make the migrant waves go away, so is not a threat as effective as Erdogan believes.

    On "the most predictable outcome ever":

    Liz Sly is a WaPo reporter.

    Guess what most of the comments are saying.

    Greek guys
    Greek guys
    Uber alles?

    Yep. Merkel gave a declaration about trying to create a safe zone and de-escalate:
    German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday called for a “protected zone” in northwestern Syria for hundreds of thousands of civilians fleeing the attacks of the Bashar al-Assad regime.

    Speaking at a news conference in the capital Berlin, Merkel expressed grave concern over escalating tensions in Idlib, a northwestern Syrian province, just across the Turkish border.

    “We need a cease-fire there, we need basically a protected zone for the hundreds of thousands of people that fled towards the Turkish border,” she stressed.

    Merkel said, together with French President Emmanuel Macron, they tried hard last week to de-escalate tensions in the region, called Russian President Vladimir Putin to contribute to a cease-fire in Idlib.

    She said they would continue their efforts to achieve these goals.

    But neither Turkey or Greece feel like letting up. The EU is kinda as useless as the UN in actually getting people to do stuff.

  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    It's as effective as any large, multi-member organisation with various states who have different strategic interests is

    That is; on occasion very much so, and on occasion very much not so

    The EU's policy position on Syria has been a complete joke for years though, so this is nothing new. And they aren't exactly alone, not like the US or NATO as a whole has really had clear policy aims in the region. Arguably the only involved parties who do are Assad's supporters and then your various specific strategic interest types (Turkey and Israel)

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  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    Solar wrote: »
    It's as effective as any large, multi-member organisation with various states who have different strategic interests is

    That is; on occasion very much so, and on occasion very much not so

    The EU's policy position on Syria has been a complete joke for years though, so this is nothing new. And they aren't exactly alone, not like the US or NATO as a whole has really had clear policy aims in the region. Arguably the only involved parties who do are Assad's supporters and then your various specific strategic interest types (Turkey and Israel)

    Aye. Large multi-member organizations that don't have anything approaching a clear consensus on action are generally not very good at decisive action for very obvious reasons.

    The EU has no consensus on this issue and it's most anti-refugee members are also the members closest to the place the refugees are coming from. And Turkey is fully aware of all this and using refugees as a political weapon against the EU in order to get western nations to back him more in his various adventures.

    Fencingsax
  • SolarSolar Registered User regular
    The thing is that most European nations are also in NATO and therefore NATO regional politics apply too

    Probably the majority of Europe couldn't give a single short fuck about Turkey's problems with the Syrian Kurds, and would prefer to back them as part of the wider SDF because they are effective and aligned with them against ISIS and not actually fully aligned with Assad (or they weren't, anyway) but they have to please Turkey, who is single-minded on the issue.

    But then you have Assad. Should he stay or go? Most of Western Europe is anti-Assad, but a lot of the rest of Europe is like, why, who cares, let's not prolong this, am I bothered if Assad wins and ends the civil war and cuts down on the refugee numbers? So you have the anti-Assad, anti-ISIS and definitely pro-Kurdish forces beating ISIS forces, but also I guess pro-Turkish policy position that a lot of Europe (at least the large nations with impactful foreign policy) have taken and it leaves you with very very few options. The US had exactly the same problem. We need to back rebels, but only the Good Guy rebels (eh?) and also the Kurds but not too much even though they have been very effective against ISIS.

    Like there's no winning position to take that doesn't piss off a strategic ally. Mostly this is Turkey's fault, for basically failing to come up with any kind of solution to their Kurdish insurgency beyond "keep killing them for decades," a policy which has unsurprisingly worked not at all.

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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    Reuters has a piece about Iraq’s healthcare system, not directly related to the Corona virus.

    https://www.reuters.com/investigates/special-report/iraq-health/
    For example in 2019, a year of relative peace, the government allocated just 2.5% of the state’s $106.5 billion budget to its health ministry, a fraction of spending elsewhere in the Middle East. By comparison, security forces received 18% and the oil ministry 13.5%. Over the past decade, data from the World Health Organization shows, Iraq’s central government has consistently spent far less per capita on healthcare than its much poorer neighbours - $161 per citizen each year on average, compared to Jordan’s $304 and Lebanon’s $649.

    ...

    Iraq has some of the lowest numbers of doctors and nurses per capita in the region - fewer than significantly poorer nations like Jordan and Tunisia.

    In 2018, Iraq had just 2.1 nurses and midwives per thousand people, less than Jordan’s 3.2 and Lebanon’s 3.7, according to each country’s estimates. And it had just 0.83 doctors per thousand people, far fewer than its Middle Eastern counterparts. Neighbouring Jordan, for example, has 2.3 doctors per thousand.

    ...

    Around 20,000 doctors, a third of Iraq’s 52,000 registered physicians, have fled since the 1990s, the association said. One doctor interviewed by Reuters said that of the 300 doctors in his 2005 graduation class, half have left Iraq. Two of his best friends, two cousins and an uncle - all five of them doctors - have fled, he said.

    It’s not a healthcare system unprepared to deal with a pandemic, it’s a worst-in-a-region system that already can’t already can’t cope, absent a pandemic.

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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    Zibblsnrt wrote: »
    Erdogan can fuck off directly into the sun for all I care at this point, but I can't get the tiniest bit upset about the idea of civilians not being prevented from escaping that hellhole.

    Well, there's that. Either governments are willing to accept refugees OR they are using guns to make the migrant waves go away, so is not a threat as effective as Erdogan believes.

    On "the most predictable outcome ever":

    Liz Sly is a WaPo reporter.

    Guess what most of the comments are saying.

    I don’t know, but it can’t be worse than the official response.
    The head of the European Commission has sent a strong message of support to Greece in its attempts to stop migrants crossing its border from Turkey.

    "Our first priority is to ensure order is maintained at the Greek external border, which is also a European border," Ursula von der Leyen said.

    She promised Greece, which she called a "European aspida [shield]", €700m (£608m; $780m) in financial aid.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-51721356

    The militaristic response/language isn’t a fluke. Here’s the Greek PM, with a photo-op where he’s inspecting the troops as a part of his response.


    Defending his tough line on maintaining the border, Prime Minister Mitsotakis said Greece could not and would not be "blackmailed".

    "This is no longer a refugee problem," he said. "This is a blatant attempt by Turkey to use desperate people to promote its geopolitical agenda and to divert attention from the horrible situation in Syria."

    smCQ5WE.jpg
  • honoverehonovere Registered User regular
    My wife's Greek and she talked to me about the reactions in the Greek expat/immigrant community here and she's pretty distraught, because a lot of those are pretty vile about the refugees. Like no self awareness there. Especially flagrant when something like half of Greece has refugee heritage both from regions now in Turkey or as refugees into the middle East during WW2.

    We're both also getting pretty fed up with the German government dragging their feet, just pointing to a necessary EU solution, while several towns and communities repeatedly offered to take in at least the underage refugees and not being allowed to by the federal government.

  • MayabirdMayabird Pecking at the keyboardRegistered User regular
    There are rumors that Erdogan believes SARS2 has gotten into refugee camps and is releasing the refugees so COVID-19 will be Europe's problem and not his. [I will note that, by process of not testing anyone, Turkey has no official cases of COVID-19, though they almost certainly have it circulating by now.] How true it is, who knows. Maybe not even Erdogan because he seems to have all the competence and savvy of the rest of the right-wing authoritarians these days, which is practically none. Mostly just saying this to be on the lookout for right-wing rhetoric about keeping out "plague rats" or similar claims. All the right-wingers around the world are on a border-closing kick even as they're finding the coronavirus is already in their borders.

  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 5



    People, taking their cues from the government, join in on the attacks on refugees, and anyone they see as sympathetic. The west’s next GoPro mass-murderer, like the one before him, isn’t emerging from a vacuum.

    And here, a reconstruction of the events around the killing of alArab on the Greek border, denied by the Greek government as fake news.

    Warning: graphic video.

    Elki on
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  • grumblethorngrumblethorn Registered User regular
    I mean what do expect? a country that is in financial ruin, with massive employment problems and a shaky government. I fully understand citizens and the government of greece putting a stop to what amounts to a invasion. No country is under any obligation to allow the free movement of non citizens into its sovereign borders.

  • Kayne Red RobeKayne Red Robe Master of Magic ArcanusRegistered User regular
    Refugees are not an invading army.

    Shooting at unarmed civilians is morally wrong at minimum and probably some kind of war crime.

    Greece has no obligation to let them in, but they are obligated to treat them humanely.

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  • Stabbity StyleStabbity Style Warning: Mothership Reporting Kennewick, WARegistered User regular
    I mean what do expect? a country that is in financial ruin, with massive employment problems and a shaky government. I fully understand citizens and the government of greece putting a stop to what amounts to a invasion. No country is under any obligation to allow the free movement of non citizens into its sovereign borders.

    I don't know if it was your intent, but describing refugees as invaders is a pretty common white supremacist rhetorical tool.

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  • BogartBogart Streetwise Hercules Fighting The Rising Odds Registered User, Moderator mod
    Geth, kick @grumblethorn from the thread.

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  • GethGeth Legion Perseus VeilRegistered User, Moderator, Penny Arcade Staff, Vanilla Staff vanilla
    Affirmative Bogart. @grumblethorn banned from this thread.

  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    edited March 7
    The great game is, unfortunately, not a place where morals do much. On one hand, making refugees the problem of everybody in Europe means dealing with another far-right flare up and the EU countries are still very much feeling the effects of the first one. On the other, sending troops to get shot at by Putin and Assad because Erdogan wants to is also a non-starter, specially because in any moment Erdogan may decide to bend over to Putin aga- nevermind that happened.
    Turkey and Russia announced a ceasefire in northern Syria on Thursday, agreeing to end weeks of heavy fighting that sparked a humanitarian disaster and raised fears of their armies clashing.

    After more than six hours of talks in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed on the ceasefire to take effect from midnight on Friday.

    The agreement will also create a security corridor along the key M4 highway in northern Syria, where Turkish and Russian forces will launch joint patrols from March 15.

    The deal aims to put a stop to intense fighting in Idlib, the northwestern province of Syria where Ankara is battling Moscow-backed government forces.

    Nearly a million of civilians have fled their homes due to the violence and dozens of Turkish soldiers have been killed.

    Putin told a joint press conference after the talks that the agreement would "serve as a good basis for ending fighting" in Idlib and for "stopping the suffering of the civilian population".

    "The object is to avoid the humanitarian crisis getting worse," Erdogan said, though he added that Turkey reserved the right to "retaliate with all its strength against any attack" by Damascus.

    In both cases, EU integration takes another massive hit.

    So, shooting the hostages it is.

    TryCatcher on
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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    Saudi Arabian authorities detained two of the kingdom’s most prominent figures for an alleged coup attempt, further consolidating the power of the king’s son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and clearing away once-formidable rivals to the throne, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The detentions occurred early Friday morning when guards from the royal court wearing masks and dressed in black arrived at the homes of the two men, took them into custody and searched their homes, according to people familiar with the matter.

    Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz al Saud, a brother of Saudi King Salman, and Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz al Saud, the king’s nephew known as MBN, were both accused of treason, the people said. The guards also arrested one of MBN’s brothers.

    The Saudi royal court accused the two men of plotting a coup to unseat the king and crown prince, according to people familiar with the situation.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/top-saudi-royal-family-members-detained-11583531033

    Crazy that the greatest upheaval in the royal family since Faisal is 99% ideology free, and is almost entirely about one prince’s personality. I didn’t expect him to have this easy of a time bringing that whole house to heel, but they turned out to be real pushovers.

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  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    edited March 7
    Elki wrote: »
    Saudi Arabian authorities detained two of the kingdom’s most prominent figures for an alleged coup attempt, further consolidating the power of the king’s son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and clearing away once-formidable rivals to the throne, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The detentions occurred early Friday morning when guards from the royal court wearing masks and dressed in black arrived at the homes of the two men, took them into custody and searched their homes, according to people familiar with the matter.

    Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz al Saud, a brother of Saudi King Salman, and Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz al Saud, the king’s nephew known as MBN, were both accused of treason, the people said. The guards also arrested one of MBN’s brothers.

    The Saudi royal court accused the two men of plotting a coup to unseat the king and crown prince, according to people familiar with the situation.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/top-saudi-royal-family-members-detained-11583531033

    Crazy that the greatest upheaval in the royal family since Faisal is 99% ideology free, and is almost entirely about one prince’s personality. I didn’t expect him to have this easy of a time bringing that whole house to heel, but they turned out to be real pushovers.

    Also he 100% has CIA/Trump help. What, you think that they just meet to fondle The Orb?

    TryCatcher on
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  • daveNYCdaveNYC Why universe hate Waspinator? Registered User regular
    TryCatcher wrote: »
    Elki wrote: »
    Saudi Arabian authorities detained two of the kingdom’s most prominent figures for an alleged coup attempt, further consolidating the power of the king’s son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and clearing away once-formidable rivals to the throne, according to people familiar with the matter.

    The detentions occurred early Friday morning when guards from the royal court wearing masks and dressed in black arrived at the homes of the two men, took them into custody and searched their homes, according to people familiar with the matter.

    Prince Ahmed bin Abdulaziz al Saud, a brother of Saudi King Salman, and Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz al Saud, the king’s nephew known as MBN, were both accused of treason, the people said. The guards also arrested one of MBN’s brothers.

    The Saudi royal court accused the two men of plotting a coup to unseat the king and crown prince, according to people familiar with the situation.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/top-saudi-royal-family-members-detained-11583531033

    Crazy that the greatest upheaval in the royal family since Faisal is 99% ideology free, and is almost entirely about one prince’s personality. I didn’t expect him to have this easy of a time bringing that whole house to heel, but they turned out to be real pushovers.

    Also he 100% has CIA/Trump help. What, you think that they just meet to fondle The Orb?

    His strategy just seems to be throw people in jail and dare anyone to stop him. Not sure he needs a lot external support for that.

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  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular


    Tweet is from the director of SITE, an NGO that tracks jihadist and white supremacist activity online.

    Link to a new Yorker profile: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2006/05/29/private-jihad

    GiantGeek2020
  • jothkijothki Registered User regular
    edited March 8
    Will it? I'm assuming that the Crown Prince had to already be the de facto ruler to be able to get away with what he's doing.

    jothki on
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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    Bloomberg on OPEC+ and Saudis’ failed attempts to convince Russia to keep production down.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-07/putin-dumps-mbs-to-start-a-war-on-america-s-shale-oil-industry

    And with that in mind, the Saudi followup.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-07/saudis-plan-big-oil-output-hike-beginning-all-out-price-war
    The shock-and-awe Saudi strategy could be an attempt to impose maximum pain in the quickest possible way to Russia and other producers, in an effort to bring them back to the negotiating table, and then quickly reverse the production surge and start cutting output if a deal is achieved. In a sign that both sides remain in talks, the OPEC+ Joint Technical Committee, a body of senior oil officials who advise ministers, plans to meet on March 18 to review the global oil market, according to delegates. Saudi and Russian officials are part of the JTC.

    ...

    In one of the most significant pricing moves, Aramco widened the discount for its flagship Arab Light crude to refiners in northwest Europe by a hefty $8 a barrel, offering it at $10.25 a barrel less than the Brent benchmark. In contrast, Urals, the Russian flagship crude blend, trades at a discount of about $2 a barrel less than Brent. Traders said the Saudi move was a direct attack at the ability of Russian companies to sell crude in Europe.

    No idea why Saudis/MBS think they can force Russia back to an agreement with a price war. Strange, but he’s a strange guy.

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  • SanderJKSanderJK Crocodylus Pontifex Sinterklasicus Madrid, 3000 ADRegistered User regular
    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.bbc.com/news/amp/world-middle-east-51785690

    Libanon is about to default on debt. That country has been spiraling for a decade, but it's about to crash.

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  • GiantGeek2020GiantGeek2020 Registered User regular
    If MBS ends up wrecking Saudi Arabia the way Trump has fucked over the US, but even longer, I will laugh and laugh and laugh. My distaste for the House of Saud is pretty much endless.

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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    edited March 9
    The Sudanese PM survived an assassination attempt, which I believe is the first known assassination attempt on a Sudanese president or PM. Conspiracies afoot.

    https://apnews.com/939d33f472c6ca51b93c7d5951d38830

    If you can read Arabic, enjoy this chyron from the Saudi propaganda mouthpiece, al Hadith.

    Elki on
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  • ElkiElki get busy Moderator, ClubPA mod
    He’s in high spirits. Or in not-assassinated spirits.

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