Shearer on Syria and Turkey etc

David Shearer posted on Facebook:

Overnight, Turkey crossed the border into Syria: that’s a major escalation.

New York Times: Turkey, Sending More Tanks Into Syria, Steps Up Pressure on Kurds

BBC: Turkey warns Syrian Kurds to withdraw east of Euphrates

CNN: Why Turkey sending tanks into Syria is significantTurkish authorities have been pressed into taking action against ISIS by the surge of suicide bombings in Turkey, as well as the terror group’s use of safe houses and “informal” financial services on Turkish soil. But Turkey is anxious that ISIS’ vulnerability could provide an opportunity for their “other” enemy in northern Syria — the Kurdish YPG militia — who have taken several villages near Jarablus recently.

Syria, Iraq, Turkey, ISIS, the Kurds, Russia, USA, France – it’s very complicated.


The conflict in Syria is complicated, it’s horrific – almost daily there are serious breaches of humanitarian law including the bombing of hospitals. It’s something NZ is trying to lead on in the UN Security Council, sadly without much success.

Given the conflict has gone on for such a long time it can sometimes be hard to remember how it began. I’d recommend this backgrounder from the BBC:

Syria: The story of the conflict

More than 250,000 Syrians have lost their lives in four-and-a-half years of armed conflict, which began with anti-government protests before escalating into a full-scale civil war. More than 11 million others have been forced from their homes as forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad and those opposed to his rule battle each other – as well as jihadist militants from so-called Islamic State. This is the story of the civil war so far, in eight short chapters.

Leave a comment


  1. “The conflict in Syria is complicated, it’s horrific – almost daily there are serious breaches of humanitarian law including the bombing of hospitals.”

    Yes, Mr Shearer, how dreadful that humanitarian law is irrelevant for the stateless Kurds.

    The issue that this muppet isn’t addressing is Erdogan and Assad are working more agreeably now that Turkey is moving towards abandoning NATO.

    As we have written in the past, the nightmare scenario for Turkey is that the Kurds take control of various regions in northern Syria and link them together to form a large area in northern Syria along the border with Turkey. The Kurds could then claim a Kurdish state in Syria stretching from the Mediterranean to Iraq, along Turkey’s border

    This is also a nightmare scenario for the al-Assad regime, which would then lose control of the entire northern Syria. It’s also a nightmare scenario for Iran, because Iran is fighting on the side of al-Assad in Syria, and because Iran has a historic enmity with the Kurds in Iraq and southeastern Turkey.

    This is creating a temporary three-way marriage of convenience involving Turkey, Iran, and the al-Assad regime.

  2. duperez

     /  26th August 2016

    There are many articles available on the story of the conflict. The access to information, the multi-media sources for recording it and the ease of spreading opinion about it mean instantly we can be in the picture and form our own understandings.

    Meanwhile back on Wikipedia we find under Syria:

    “Arameans and Phoenicians
    Around the 14th century BC, various Semitic peoples appeared in the area, such as the semi-nomadic Suteans who came into an unsuccessful conflict with Babylonia to the east, and the West Semitic speaking Arameans who subsumed the earlier Amorites. They too were subjugated by Assyria and the Hittites for centuries. The Egyptians fought the Hittites for control over western Syria; the fighting reached its zenith in 1274 BC with the Battle of Kadesh. The west remained part of the Hittite empire until its destruction c. 1200 BC, while eastern Syria largely became part of the Middle Assyrian Empire, who also annexed much of the west during the reign of Tiglath-Pileser I 1114–1076 BC.”

    Five years or so must be more than an eternity for those most closely involved. In comparison to the length of time in history people in the region have been in some sort of strife, that time could be seen as the littlest grain in the sands of time.

  3. Blazer

     /  26th August 2016

    Shearer should just STFU…no one wants to know what he thinks including the Labour Party.

    • Gezza

       /  26th August 2016

      True. Shearer’s never even certain what he thinks.
      He’s usually just as surprised as everyone else to hear what he has to say.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: