Turkey will either grow or shrink

Turkey will either grow or shrink

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan uttered a historic sentence during the latest cabinet meeting held at the Beştepe Palace in Ankara.  I read it in daily Yeni Şafak writer Mehmet Acet’s column on Oct. 10. Take note of this sentence. This is what Acet wrote: 

“Friends, Turkey can no longer stay at this point. The status quo will change somehow. We will either leap with moves forward; or we will be bound to shrink. Speaking for myself, I am determined to make onward moves,” the president said.

This is what was behind the harsh proclamation against Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Oct. 11 at the Eurasian Islamic Council. He declared that Turkey will take steps independently in Iraq and Syria without taking permission from anybody. 

It is clear that Erdoğan believes that we need to take matters into our own hands at the current juncture. 
Mehmet Acet is Kanal 7’s Ankara representative, and he is a good journalist with reliable sources. From his column, I understand that what Erdoğan mentions as growth or shrinkage is like a geographical enlargement or shrinkage. I am not sure. Nevertheless, the picture ahead of us is becoming clear with its risks and opportunities. 

The Euphrates Shield Operation in Syria is one of these onward moves that Erdoğan mentioned. Our insistence in participating in the Mosul operation in Iraq and in the Bashiqa Camp is such a move. 

Ankara is trying to do what it was not able to do with the resolution process by demonstrating its military power in the field.
Making up for the peace process 

In place of separation and downsizing, the resolution process was regarded as a golden opportunity that would enable growth. It was going to end the separatism at home and it was going to enlarge Turkey’s influence zone externally by embracing Kurds in Syria and Iraq.
Moreover, there were even dreams that the autonomous Kurdish administrations formed there would one day be attached to Turkey with a certain model. 

In other words, in one go, both the separation threat would be removed and a growth horizon would be opened in front of us. 

However, the shelving of the resolution process and the Democratic Union Party’s (PYD) failure to dissociate itself from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) to become an independent actor destroyed the Syrian leg. 

In the Iraqi leg, on the other hand, good relations with the regional Kurdish administration continue. 

However, the Baghdad government, provoked by the PKK and Iran, is still an impediment. Moreover, difficulties stemming from the United States making use of the PKK-PYD in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) has been added to the equation. 

Serious doubts and a crisis of confidence have come between us and our allies. Ankara now seems to be determined to spoil this game by using force. It wants to guarantee its place at the table after ISIL is removed from the heart of this region. 

What will happen to the PKK after ISIL? 

The war against ISIL is in its final curve. It was one of the most savage and bloodthirsty organizations in history but its end is near. It is reported that international recruitments are finished. The circle around it is closing. If it cannot hold on to Mosul and Raqqa, it cannot survive any longer.
The defeat of this gang of murderers is close. So much dust has not been raised for nothing. 

The fight over who will and who will not participate in the Mosul and Raqqa operations is the sign of this. 
Calculations for the post-ISIL era are being made. These are the calculations to claim rights and have a say when the ISIL region is reshaped. 

Well, if ISIL is defeated, what is there for the PKK which is having dreams of legitimizing itself over the war against ISIL? 

There’s no need for prophesy; a deep loneliness and isolation are in the pipeline for PKK. It will be dysfunctional before the eyes of the powers it relied upon and will be abandoned. 

Nothing but nothing will be able to change the PKK’s destiny – not the villainous assassinations of ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) executives in the region, engagement in treacherous political murders and the transfer of the evil of terror to the cities.

The inevitable end is nearing.