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Syria is quite the mess. By all accounts Russia is blocking the Turkish airforce in Afrin, presumably as retaliation for the shooting down of the Russian jet in Idlib. Though as far as I can see Russia is very pragmatic with its grudges, so presumably they don't want to see the Kurds easily crushed. Or at least without exctracting a suitable price. They can play the one air strike for a few dead Chechens in Turkey game for a long time without getting bored. Which doesn't mean that there is any happy end in sight for the YPG. Or for the rest of Syria. The US security state seems to be having too much fun to let the government win easily. And I presume the spooks are pretty OK with not having to deal with the surviving jihadists just yet.
One thing that I don't have any handle on at all is the Saudi - Turkey rivallry. In the Qatar kerfluffle we had Saudi and the Emirates on one side and Turkey and Iran on the other. Before the Afrin invasion I heard some noise fom the SDF side that they thought they had a thing going with the Saudis.
by generic on Fri Feb 9th, 2018 at 10:05:01 AM EST

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