I'm fascinated by the point of international law here. These are pieces of Syria. They belong to someone, or something, Syrian. Admittedly, the Syrian government is not and has not physically held possession of them. But they are, by simple definition, "Syrian". Who has given the United States the authority to "secure" shit in and around them? If "possession is nine-tenths of the law" and infantry the bailiff's men? Well, yes, but that's the ONLY possible justification. There's no possible actual legal or diplomatic standing for these guys. If the Syrian Arab Army shows up and says "GTFO or we'll shoot" and we don't GTFO we've just started a shooting war with the Syrian government for something that is purely and unequivocally our fuckup. Any GIs that will die will be dying for a mistake, or worse.
And this is more than just a weird mission. This is stupidly risky mission. The US now has no - zero - "friends" in Syria. Check out this little video of random Syrian civilians cursing and pelting GIs with spuds, rocks, and rotten fruit. Nobody will have these poor bastards' backs - indeed, they're targets for everyone; Islamic State whackaloons, Syrian Army troops, Kurds pissed off at being betrayed, random jihadi nuts. Hell, it'd be shorter to list the people who DON'T have a reason to kill GIs than those who do. For the sake of some crappy little pieces of Syrian oilpatch these poor bastards are going to be hanging out there with a huge "Shoot Me Now!" sign on them.
But, hey! No worries! These sorts of things only semi-complicated and are totally not difficult for someone as smart as the Trumpster to figure out, right!
Oh, and this? THIS is simply fucking nuts:
"President Donald Trump is prepared to use military force against Turkey over its actions in Syria if “needed,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday as U.S. troops withdrew from the region. “We prefer peace to war,” Pompeo told CNBC’s Wilfred Frost in a taped interview that aired on “Closing Bell” on Monday. “But in the event that kinetic action or military action is needed, you should know that President Trump is fully prepared to undertake that action.”I have no words to describe the idea of starting a shooting war with a NATO member. I know Sven likes to remind us how worthless an ally the U.S. has become to the nations of Europe, but this? Attacking Turkey, a NATO partner, for military actions taken in Syria? Where the hell does that leave
Christ, every time I think this Administration has reached Peak Shitshow...
Update 10/23: Unlike Fake News Donnie, his BFF Vlad the Impaler is a genuine badass dictator who rides around bare-chested on a pony and knows that if you grab your enemy by the balls his heart and mind will follow.
"According to the deal announced at a joint news conference in Sochi, Ankara will control a 32km-wide (20 miles) area between the towns of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ain, which covers 120km (75 miles) of the Turkish-Syrian border. Beginning on Wednesday at noon, Russian military police and Syrian border guards will start removing the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), which spearhead the SDF, and their weapons 30km (19 miles) from the border area. Once this is complete, within 150 hours, Turkish and Russian forces will run joint patrols 10km (six miles) to the east and west of the zone."Here's what this will look like:
Meanwhile, the Adventures of #EndEndlessWars continues; Trumpy's SecDef Esperanto announced that the US guys who had grabbed a hat out of YPG-land were moving to western Iraq, at which point the Baghdad government slapped him upside the head with what amounts to "Fuck YOU, Yankee dog!"
Thus proving that all this region needed was a very stable genius.
Unfortunately, it was an evil genius, and he runs the former Soviet kleptocracy.