Is Syria Near The Tipping Point?
The encroachment of yet another troubled nation into global geopolitical (read US implicitly) strife, this time Syria, appears to be intensifying further. As Sabah notes today, the CIA Director David Petraeus paid a surprise visit to Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan yesterday. The topics of discussion were 'regional issues' but it was evident from concerns voiced about the instability in Syria and Iraq giving the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) terrorist organization a stronger foothold (a group which has been a source of tension between USA, Syria, Iraq, and obviously Turkey before - whose 'undeclared war' with Syria was a direct response to the countries assistance to the PKK). Seemingly stuck in the middle, Erdogan warned of "the potential crisis that could develop in the region due to the sectarian strife in Iraq" and underlined his concerns of events in Syria. One can only wonder at the strategic positioning that the CIA Director's surprise visit achieved, since the published agenda seemed so calmly diplomatic, and for what reason the ninety minute visit was so spontaneous.
Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan hosted a very special surprise guest yesterday, one that had not been included in the Prime Ministry’s official schedule.
Erdogan held an approximately one and a half hour meeting with CIA Director David Petraeus, who had arrived to Ankara the day prior. Joining the meeting was M?T Undersecretary Hakan Fidan and US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. According to an announcement released by the U.S. Embassy, "During the meeting; regional issues, the fight against the PKK terrorist organization and relations between the two nations' intelligence agencies were the main items discussed."
This visit, which coincided with the intensifying conflict in Syria, was considered to be a critical one. According to the information obtained, during the meeting with Petraeus, Erdogan mentioned his concerns due to the events transpiring in Syria. Erdogan warned that should the instability in Syria intensify, a potential living space will be made available for organizations, especially the PKK. Erdogan underlined the successful functioning of the USA-Turkey-Iraq tripartite mechanism and warned of potential crisis that could develop in the region due to the sectarian strife in Iraq.