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Russian-Turkish Deal for Syria Announced

Lebanon Threatened by Civil War

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Posted on: 
23 Oct 2019
Russian-Turkish Deal for Syria Announced
The Kremlin issued a statement Tuesday following a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Reccep Tayyip Erdogan, saying the two had struck a deal that would see the Syrian Kurdish factions withdrawing their forces from the Turkish border region and redeploying further south under the supervision of Russian and Assad regime troops. The statement added a warning to the Kurdish factions that they had been abandoned by the US, broadly hinting to other US allies in the region that this was unlikely to an isolated case.

"The United States has been the Kurds' closest ally in recent years. (But) in the end, it abandoned the Kurds and, in essence, betrayed them," Kremlin spokesman Dimitri Peskov told reporters. "Now they (the Americans) prefer to leave the Kurds at the border (with Turkey) and almost force them to fight the Turks."

Here are two recent podcasts giving some analysis of this situation

On Wednesday, U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper arrived in Baghdad for meetings with officials of the Baghdad regime which were likely to include discussions of the US troops who are leaving Syria for Iraq. The regime has made clear to Washington that they must not stay in Iraq, even to fight the Islamic State terror militia, as the Pentagon initially announced they would be doing. The meeting also comes amidst large-scale street protests in Iraqi cities against what protesters have said are unacceptable rates of unemployment, poor government services to the citizenry and widespread public corruption.

In related news, large crowds continued to gather in the streets of Lebanese cities on Tuesday and Wednesday despite public appeals for calm by the Iranian-backed Shi’ite terror militia Hezbollah, the most powerful faction in the country. Reports had begun to surface on Monday of clashes between supporters of Hezbollah and the Amal Shi’ite group on one side and protesters on the other, with the Lebanese National Army attempting to get between the two sides to prevent clashes from getting out of control. Leaders of the LNA have also publicly stated that they will not confront the protesters on behalf of the government.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah leaders have darkly hinted that they are prepared to send their fighters to violently disperse the protesters if things get to a certain undefined point, leading to fears of a new civil war in Lebanon which could be even more devastating than the last one which raged from 1975-1990.

Here is a video about Israeli communities close to the border with Lebanon


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