The Turkish-Syrian Border Fighting A Prelude to Another NATO Intervention?

The recent passage of a resolution by the Turkish parliament to authorize cross-border retaliatory military action against Syria after a recent barrage of mortar rounds from Syria into Turkey is a sign that Turkey, working with NATO’s neoconservative Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, is hoping to invoke for the second time in its history the NATO collective security authorization, Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty that stipulates an act of aggression against one NATO member is an attack on all.

The first time Article 5 was invoked after the 9/11 attacks on the United States…

Rasmussen is the perfect facilitator to engineer NATO action in Syria. He was a leading cheerleader for the U.S. invasion and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan, including the shedding Danish military blood in the senseless military operations.

And after Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay was caught red-handed lying about Syria officially apologizing for the shelling when, in fact, the shelling was carried out by units of the Turkish-supported Free Syrian Army, Turkey is taking a page from the “false flag” military doctrine practiced for decades by Israel.

Five civilians in the Turkish village of Akçakale were killed in the October 3 mortar barrage from Syria but in false flag actions, it is innocent civilians who are the key to success.

Civilian deaths help whip up war fever by the general public against a real or imagined enemy. An October 5 mortar round from Syria landed in the Turkish village of Aşağıpulluyazı in the restive Turkish province of Hatay, where there exists a sizable Alawite community that feels a kinship with the dominant Alawite government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that Turkey’s standard response to any fire from Syrian territory – regardless of its source – would be met with Turkish artillery fire. Borrowing a page from Israeli “price tag” attacks on Palestinian Muslims and Christians, Davutoglu said that Turkey would respond one-for –one, for each artillery round from Syrian soil. The Turkish policy is obviously aimed at increasing tensions.

And, for the second time, NATO could he heading into another collective action war based on a false flag military attack. Credible evidence continues to pile up linking the same players involved in backing the Free Syrian Army — Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel, Turkey, and the neocons in the United States, which all played their own roles in the false flag events of 9/11.

No matter how much proof Assad puts on the table regarding Saudi, Qatari, and Turkish support for the most radical Islamist cadres of the Syrian rebel forces, he, like Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi who also complained about outside support for Al Qaeda in his country, he is derided by the global corporate news media and a chorus of international organization bureaucrats and Eurocrats who dance to the anti-Syrian government tune.

The idea of NATO collective action in Syria poses a number of problems. For example, as the Free Syrian Army appears to be responsible for attacking NATO member Turkey, will the rebels face an onslaught by the armed forces of Portugal, Slovenia, Norway, and Bulgaria in a collective response? Or will the Syrian government be NATO’s target?


After 9/11, NATO collective retaliation was authorized bit against whom? Al Qaeda was a target but was and remains a non-state actor, although it appears to have more than ample connections inside the governments of Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

As for Afghanistan, there were two rival governments at the time of NATO’s action: the Taliban’s Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, recognized by the Saudis, Pakistanis, and United Arab Emirates; and the Islamic State of Afghanistan, recognized by the United Nations.

NATO invoked collective action against a country that had two governments claiming control, one a non-belligerent that had the support of NATO members like France, and the other, a government that maintained low-level contacts with the George W. Bush administration through the Taliban representative in New Jersey, the niece-in-law of former CIA director Richard Helms.

Moreover, the Taliban government had offered to put Al Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden on trial for the 9/11 attacks, an offer rejected by Washington. NATO, therefore, went to war in Afghanistan against a group called Al Qaeda and a nation whose UN seat was held by a non-belligerent player in the events of 9/11.

Syria can easily turn into another Afghanistan if Turkey manages to convince NATO to invoke a collective military response. The Syrian rebels, now, ironically, contain Al Qaeda elements, the very same enemy threat NATO is warring against in Afghanistan as a result of collective security action.

Just as in Libya, where there was a NATO no-fly zone that was used as cover for “regime change,” Al Qaeda has more often than not served as allies for one or more NATO countries. Al Qaeda units were at the vanguard of the Libyan rebel alliance in Benghazi who first rebelled against Muammar al Qaddafi.

Al Qaeda units in Syria, which include Libyan Al Qaeda veterans, are receiving the same sort of military assistance from Qatar and Saudi Arabia as they received in Libya.

NATO’s collective security doctrine was formulated at the beginning of the Cold War to deal with a Soviet attack in central Europe. As NATO expands eastward into Asia and the Middle East and southward into Africa, the collective security arrangement will meet a number of Afghanistan- and Syria-like tests.

The Taliban in Afghanistan represented a rival government that did not exercise 100 percent control over Afghanistan but NATO went to war against Afghanistan. The Syrian rebels control small portions of northern Syria, yet Turkey would have NATO go to war on its behalf over a few mortar rounds from Syrian rebel-held territory.

Fortunately, with the change in government in Tbilisi, Georgia’s membership in NATO is no longer a top priority but if Georgia did become a member of NATO, Georgia, like Turkey, would try to invoke the collective action clause with regard to Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

If Azerbaijan joined NATO, it would try to bring NATO into conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh enclave.

It should be recalled that one of Secretary of State Colin Powell’s first actions as Secretary of State was to bring Armenian and Azerbaijani leaders to Key West, Florida for a summit over the disputed enclave. At the time, NATO was pushing for a peace agreement so membership talks with Azerbaijan and Armenia could proceed. There was no agreement and NATO decided, for the time being, to steer clear of the two Caucasus republics.

NATO’s very purpose appears confusing, especially when its Article 5 provisions over Turkish-Syrian border actions are weighed against the need for Estonia or Iceland to be worried about five Turkish civilians dying in an attack that probably didn’t even involve the Syrian government.

The Turkish-Syrian border is as far away from Whitehorse, Yukon Territory as one could get. But Article 5 could bring a Canadian soldier from Whitehorse into combat against Syria because of an isolated border event half a world away.

The Turkish-Syrian border is not a reason for NATO exist, it is a prime reason for it to be disbanded.


Wayne MADSEN, Strategic Culture Foundation

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