President Trump’s callous betrayal of our Kurdish allies in northern Syria has placed them in an impossible situation — and forced them to make a deal with the devil. After the Trump administration announced it would be withdrawing all of its units from northeastern Syria, removing one of the few remaining obstacles between the Turkish army and the Kurdish cities they intend to pillage, the Syrian Democratic Forces reached a deal with Russia and the Assad regime in Damascus.
Kobani Military Council leader Ismat Sheikh Hassan on Sunday evening told Kurdistan 24 & reporters that they reached deal Moscow/Damascus after US betrayed the Kurds (1) pic.twitter.com/xYFLm2PvuR
— Wladimir (@vvanwilgenburg) October 13, 2019
Hearing it’s a much, *much* wider deal than just those two cities. Not sure when it will be announced though
— Josie Ensor (@Josiensor) October 13, 2019
Russian and Syrian Arab Army troops will be filling the void left by the United States, already moving into the cities of Kobani and Manbij to ward off the Turkish invaders and their pet jihadist allies.
At the drop of a hat, Donald Trump has handed murderous dictator Bashar al-Assad control over all of Syria and sounded the death knell for the decentralized, democratic feminist and multi-ethnic nation-building project that thousands of Kurds fought and died for.
The Kurds are no friends to the Russians or to Assad, but with their backs against the wall and faced with ethnic cleansing by the bloodthirsty Turks, they don’t really have a choice. Kurdish commander Mazloum Abdi shared his reluctance in a heartbreaking column for Foreign Policy entitled “If We Have to Choose Between Compromise and Genocide, We Will Choose Our People.”
“We believe in democracy as a core concept, but in light of the invasion by Turkey and the existential threat its attack poses for our people, we may have to reconsider our alliances. The Russians and the Syrian regime have made proposals that could save the lives of millions of people who live under our protection. We do not trust their promises. To be honest, it is hard to know whom to trust.”
The litany of sins committed by President Donald Trump is lengthy indeed, but this is one of his worst. Heartless, cowardly, and entirely unnecessary, Donald Trump’s betrayal of the Kurdish people is openly enabling barbaric dictators like Erdogan, Assad, and Putin.
It is ensuring the return of ISIS as our Turkish “allies” deliberately break them out of prison, making the millions of dollars spent and tens of thousands of civilians killed in the fight against the caliphate all for nothing.
He is ensuring that no nation will ever trust the United States again and that every corner of Syria will be trampled under the boot of Assad. At home and abroad, Donald Trump is strangling democracy, empowering psychotic blood-and-soil ultranationalists, fanning the flames of radicalism and standing by while innocent people die.
This is a truly black day for the United States and the values we once stood for.
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Opinion columnist and former editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.