Turkey Vows "Harshest Reaction" To Kurdish Advance In Syria As Missiles Hit Hospitals, School

Tyler Durden's picture

Over the weekend, the biggest story in the geopolitical world was Turkey’s escalation in Syria.

With the Sunni-backed opposition on its last legs in Aleppo and under near constant bombardment by Russia from the air and Hezbollah on the ground, Ankara and Riyadh have a decision to make: intervene or allow the rebellion to be crushed.

We’ve spilled quite a bit of digital ink explaining why allowing the rebels to be routed really isn’t an option. It would represent a key victory for Iran at a time when the country is already on a roll. International sanctions have been lifted, oil revenue is set to quintuple by year end, and Tehran’s grip on Iraqis military and politicians is stronger than ever. A victory in Syria would be an embarrassment for the Saudis who have funded and armed the opposition and a win at Aleppo would give the Iranians sectarian bragging rights at a time when tensions between Riyadh and Tehran are already running high thanks to the execution of prominent Shiite cleric Nimr al-Nimr.

And so, with the stakes high, the Saudis sent warplanes to Turkey’s Incirlik air base and Turkey promised an imminent “escalation.” The problem, we said, is this: somehow, Turkey and Saudi Arabia need to figure out how to spin an attack on the YPG and an effort to rescue the opposition at Aleppo as an anti-ISIS operation even though ISIS doesn’t have a large presence in the area.

Well that problem hasn’t been solved, but Turkey doesn’t seem to care. Ankara began shelling YPG positions over the weekend at Menagh air base, which the Kurds seized from Turkey-backed rebels just days ago.

Turkey claims this is about self defense. Erdogan equates the YPG (which is supported overtly by the US) with the PKK, Ankara’s arch enemy that’s recognized by Washington as a “terrorist” group.

The YPG have consolidated gains in northern Syria and are essentially trying to bridge the territory they hold east of the Euphrates with their territory in the west. That, Turkey says, isn’t going to happen. “YPG elements were forced away from around Azaz. If they approach again they will see the harshest reaction,” Turkish PM Ahmet Davutoglu said on Monday. “We will not allow Azaz to fall.”

Of course Azaz already “fell” - to Islamist rebels backed by the Turks who are aiming to usurp the government of a sovereign state.

In any event, more than a dozen civilians were killed in Azaz on Monday when missiles hit a children's hospital. "At least 14 civilians were killed when missiles hit a children's hospital, a school and other locations in the rebel-held Syrian town of Azaz near the Turkish border," Reuters reports. "At least five missiles hit the hospital in the town center and a nearby school, where refugees fleeing a major Syrian army offensive were sheltering [and] another refugee shelter south of the town was also hit by bombs dropped by jets believed to be Russian."

Yes, the jets are "believed to be Russian," although Davutoglu just finished explaining how the YPG will face "the harshest reaction" if it advances on the town.

We suppose it's not at all possible that the Turkish army made a little targeting "mistake" with some mortars.

Also on Monday, another MSF affiliated hospital was destroyed in Idlib. “This appears to be a deliberate attack on a health structure,” Massimiliano Rebaudengo, the Doctors Without Borders head of mission in Syria said. “The destruction of the hospital leaves the local population of around 40,000 people without access to medical services in an active zone of conflict.” Here's what was left of the building after the strike:

As Reuters goes on to note, "tens of thousands of people have fled to Azaz, the last rebel stronghold before the border with Turkey."

"We have been moving scores of screaming children from the hospital," one medic said.

According to Davutoglu, the school and the hospital were hit by "a Russian ballistic missile." The PM also said Russia and the YPG have closed the "humanitarian border" north of Aleppo. In reality, Russia and Iran have closed Turkey's supply line to the rebels. It has nothing to do with "humanitarian aid." Moscow and Tehran have no interest in starving the people of Aleppo. They do, however, have an interest in starving the rebels of guns.

That's what the weekend's hostilities were all about. Turkey hasn't figured out exactly how to intervene at Aleppo without getting into an open confrontation with Russia, but everyone knows Erdogan hates the YPG, so Ankara figured shelling the Syrian Kurds advancing on Azaz from the west would effectively kill two birds with one stone: it would help keep supply lines to the rebels open, and some Kurds would be killed in the process. And no one, Turkey figures, is going to get too bent out of shape about it because let's face it, Turkey has been shelling the Kurds in Syria for months anyway.

Whoever was responsible for the multiple civilian casualties that unfolded across the country on Monday, it's not going to deter the Russians from routing the opposition... er... "the terrorists." “We are fighting with the terrorist groups (Islamic State), Nusra Front, and others linked to al Qaeda,” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov said in an interview with Der Spiegel. “Strikes on terrorist groups will continue in any case, even if a cease-fire is agreed upon in Syria.”

"Moscow's aim is to leave the international community with just two options in Syria: President Bashar al-Assad or Islamic State," Davutoglu said on Monday. 

Why, one might fairly ask, does the "international community" have a say in this at all? Had Syria been left to handle its own affairs five years ago, we wouldn't be in this mess and the world wouldn't be teetering on the edge of a global conflict. Well, at least not over Syria.

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Jethro's picture

This ought to be great news for Russian arms sales in Kurdistan.

Nemo DeNovo's picture

Here comes the *BOOM*


Look whatever its going to take to get to the Total System RESET, can we just finally get there.........

Manthong's picture

..sounds pretty harsh to me.

But on second thought , it’s not as if it was something the US wouldn’t do.

KesselRunin12Parsecs's picture
KesselRunin12Parsecs (not verified) hedgeless_horseman Feb 15, 2016 11:38 AM

Israel has always been at war with Uranus

the phantom's picture

"Moscow's aim is to leave the international community with just two options in Syria: President Bashar al-Assad or Islamic State," Davutoglu said on Monday.

Is this rat-faced barbarian being serious??  So Syrians and the international community should think about having ISIS as a better option than Assad?  I thought  "the international community" and horse face agreed that Assad should stay in power, at least until a "transitional" gov't is in place so the Syrians can decide their own future?  Someone forgot to give this Turkey the talking points.

Save_America1st's picture

Kinda seems like NATO/US is using Turkey as the target bait for Putin.  They are calling his bluff or calling him out.  If he bombs Turkey it would mean Russia against NATO.  If he lets Turkey and the Saudies have there way in Syria then he won't be able to save Syria from NATO.   Its Putin's move now and the chess board is getting thin on pawns.  The more important pieces will have to start getting sacrificed now.

waterwitch's picture

Maybe Russia should invade Cyprus.  That'll distract 'em.

HowdyDoody's picture

Associated Press photograph of 'refugees' arriving at Turkish border. The 'refugees' had time to collect their personal possessions (red circles) before leaving.



WTFRLY's picture

When American refugees hit the trail, will you bring your guns?

BeansMcGreens's picture

I am going to bring a lawyer, never know when one will comes in handy.

Motasaurus's picture

After deathly silence on Turkey shelling Syrian territory, the Australian media is pumping the "Russia bombed a hospital" lie today.

SWRichmond's picture

When American refugees hit the trail, will you bring your guns?

This is an important point to discuss.  We will not be refugeeing anywhere.  We already hold the territory.  The dot gov is not our equal, and certainly not our superior.  Yes they can knock us off individually, but we are everywhere.  The fact is the dot gov is not able to operate in OUR territory without our consent.  This was clearly demonstrated in Iraq.  We noticed.

And that consent is being slowly and inexorably withdrawn.  We are armed, but there will be no stand up battles, no fighting over towns like Aleppo, no flags over capitols, no armies to destroy.  It will just continue to be more and more difficult for the dot gov to operate outside its enclaves, until eventually it cannot.

And it is important to note that those enclaves don't produce anything other than debt (NYC) and lying murdering sacks of sociopathic shit (DC).  No food, however.  It is not we who need their compliance and support, it is they who need ours.  And they are losing it, and they know it.

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

I take credit for popularizing that particular 1984 quote here on ZH.

You hear me!  I'm like Stanley Motss from Wag the Dog: "I WANT THE CREDIT. *whimpers* I want the credit."

"Who killed Kennedy? I read the first draft of the Warren report. It said he was killed by a drunk driver."

BTW, Stanley Motss was principally based on Stanley Kubrick and some top secret work he did for the US gov't in the late 60s (allegedly the Apollo PROGRAM), and another producer or two.

Stuart's picture

Russia to Turkey:  Mmmm, thanksgiving is now a Russian holiday too.. and it came early.

InjectTheVenom's picture

i dunno, i'll ask my lawyer, his name is Warren Peace

Mr. Universe's picture

I'd be cautious about that, he tends to go on and on and on...

ThirdWorldDude's picture

If you believed Wilbur's long face and empty words then I'm afraid you're not familiar with the West's multi-fac(et)ed international relations policies. Anglo-zionists always tend to say one thing and deliver the exact opposite of what they've promised.

It took Russia some time to comprehend this, but notice that ever since the coup in Libya Russia has adopted a strict Res, non verba modus operandi in its relations with its western "partners".

ack's picture

Don't disagree. Except to say that some anglo-saxon-protestants were raised by people who firmly believed WORD is  BOND. American business -- in the early days -- was built on a handshake. American's were trustworthy. Wasn't until the last half of the 20th century, when the J-tribe was firmly into position and control, one had to write complicated contracts covering EVERY SINGLE move. The TRIBE isn't trustworthy. It knows not to trust its own WORD. Personal integrity just doesn't pay enough. And since USG is owned-n-operated by Jews. Russia is wise to not believe a word USG says. BUT. There are PLENTY of American's who still abide by their word.  And one day. Russia will find them.  

Freddie's picture


Chechen double agents in ISIS, fighting radical islam with bullets and words, Kadyrov interviews


Looks like Putin and Russia's friend Kadyrov has Chechens double agents in ISIS calling in strikes on ISIS. 

John Kerry-Kohn will have a long face like Mr. Ed.  Hopefully, McCain will have a stroke.


Gazooks's picture

"...thought  "the international community" and horse face agreed that Assad should stay in power, at least until a "transitional" gov't is in place.."


Feint, ..like every other lie the neocon and minion slime use as diversion from pure malevolent means to full spec dominance ends amid global rubble.


Watch closely. We're somewhere near next. 

the phantom's picture

Understood... but the "coalition of the willing" used to at least have the same talking points in public, even though they would not follow through.  My point was, with Turkey going rogue, even the facade of decorum is gone.

ThirdWorldDude's picture

'with Turkey going rogue'

That's exactly what they want you to believe!

the phantom's picture

Maybe... but Erdogan has always been an irrational actor.  Also there's that whole thing of history with the Turks... being barbarians and such.  We're not exactly talking about an enlightened people here.  They have their own agenda.

ThirdWorldDude's picture

Ask yourself: would Turkey and S.Arabia with its minions take a major internationally destabilising step without first getting a nod by their zionist handlers in DC?

Funny how Turkey used to be perfectly civilized during the last 100 years; that is, until the Empire came up with other plans for them and spun the directed propaganda of 'the ever-rogue Turks'...  LMAO

the phantom's picture

"Funny how Turkey used to be perfectly civilized during the last 100 years"

Uh, you have heard about a little island called Cyprus, right? The 1000's of times they violated Greek/Syrian airspace over the past few decades?  The ISIS oil smuggling?  Not sure we have the same definition of "perfectly civilized".  I get your point, but some dogs are more obedient than others.  

ebear's picture

"Funny how Turkey used to be perfectly civilized during the last 100 years..."

My old Armenian girlfriend and her family might have a different view of that.

ThirdWorldDude's picture

Contributing, or remaining complacent to the death of 500 000 children doesn't make you a champion of human civilization either, but i digress...

Don't mash up government-sponsored terrorism with a culture's level of civilizedness. Turks, like all other sheep, are easy to herd.

WTFRLY's picture


Judy Shepherd: [reads] "Don't be fooled, it isn't thunder / Staying put would be a blunder."

Alan Parrish: Run! IT'S A STAMPEDE!

DownWithYogaPants's picture

I can not believe my country is up to its elbows in this bloody cluster fuck.  But it seriously appears it is.  Obama probably just wants more islamic democrat voters so he's hitting them there to make refugees.  Theu guy is a seriously unlikeable guy.  Basically Bush without the charisma.

Crash Overide's picture

WWIII just in time for the next economic crash.

ENDless Wars, we all know the program by now, fucking sick of it...

omniversling's picture

"Israel has always been at war with Uranus"

But not with Saturn...

SuperRay's picture

A hospital suddenly blows up, but they magically know the device was a Russian missile? 

KesselRunin12Parsecs's picture
KesselRunin12Parsecs (not verified) SuperRay Feb 15, 2016 11:38 AM

Cue the babies in incubators!

Ms. Erable's picture

Waiting to see the 'Baby Milk Factory' t-shirts make an appearance.

HungryPorkChop's picture

I remember reading this bumper sticker years ago and it's more true today than ever: 

"It will be a great day when our schools have all the money they need and the airforce has to hold a bake sale to buy a bomber."

Dame Ednas Possum's picture

How any reasonable human being could down vote the above comment is proof in itself that evil is alive and well.

(I think the original quote should read 'books' rather than 'money').

Beowulf55's picture

Government education cannot afford the rapid spread of human understanding. Should people learn their own worth and
potential, they would never submit to the artificial authorities placed over them. Government education is about control.

Government education is designed to protect the powerful, to protect those in authority. Its job is to make sure that speech cannot flow freely. To accomplish this, government education establishes a pattern of subversion of thought and fosters politically correct speech.

Mr. Universe's picture

Public schools are designed to fail and extort the maximum pain from the taxpayers as possible. Jimmy Carter hit a NWO homerun with the DOE.

August's picture

Society needs schools, but we don't need these schools.

Society needs banks, but we sure as fuck don't need these banks.

Lumberjack's picture

Some fortune telling guy with a crystal ball who reads horoscopes in London made the claim....at his Observatory.

KesselRunin12Parsecs's picture
KesselRunin12Parsecs (not verified) Lumberjack Feb 15, 2016 12:01 PM

Does he have a '900' number? I like to keep infOArmed.

DownWithYogaPants's picture

Asperin?  Is that what they treat Assburgers with?  or Aspirin?  or the suppository form Asspirin?

StychoKiller's picture

Meh, there seems to be an epidemic of Corruptol™ abuse right now...

johnnycanuck's picture

Never fear, Elliot Higgins of Brown Moses fame is on the case with his merry band of internet sleuths.  Another NGO fed propaganda bullhorn.  See Bellingcat for his latest gig, all anti Russia, all the time.