The primary combatants are the SNA, mercenaries supported by Turkey, and the SDF, although it now seems clear how much the absence of US forces has allowed the continuing rather than paused carnage. 300,000 people have been displaced.
And then there’s all that Trumpian disinformation, often repeating Turkish talking points.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) October 19, 2019
Origin of the conflictTrump has framed this conflict as both having started under Obama and one that’s hundreds of years old.Facts First: While Trump can argue that Obama’s Syria policy led to the current state of affairs, Obama obviously did not “start” the conflict between Turkey and the Kurds or the conflict between Turkey and the PKK in particular. According to experts, the origins of the conflict between the Kurds and Turkey can be traced to shortly after the First World War.[…]
The Kurds and “a different part of Syria”Trump has at least twice appeared to refer to a 2017 dispute between the Kurds and Iraq as having taken place in a “different part of Syria.”Facts First: The dispute was over the contested city of Kirkuk, which is in Iraq, not Syria.
Trump’s Turkey deal vs. previous administrationsThe day a ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds was announced, Trump claimed people had tried to make that deal with Turkey for 10 years but were not able to. Then he said it had been 15 years or more.Facts First: The Syrian Civil War is less than 10 years old, Trump made a narrow deal specifically related to Turkey’s offensive this month, and no previous president had sought to offer Turkey such concessionary terms.
Kurdish commander Gen Mazlum Kobane makes an urgent appeal, telling @NBCNews Syria's Kurds face what could become “the biggest ethnic cleansing operation of the 21st century… happening in front of the American army's eyes.” He blames Turkey and Trump. Coming up @NBCNightlyNews
— Richard Engel (@RichardEngel) October 19, 2019
— Coordination & Military Ops Center – SDF (@cmoc_sdf) October 19, 2019
— Jeff Stein (@SpyTalker) October 19, 2019
Erdogan flagrantly ignoring ceasefire & the Kurds literally begging President Trump for help after his unforgivable betrayal. Allowing the ethnic cleansing of a key American partner is stomach churning. https://t.co/Axdn82YD65
— Richard Blumenthal (@SenBlumenthal) October 19, 2019
Over the last century, the Kurds have endured wars, repression and above all, betrayal https://t.co/hvfctQYM2S
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) October 20, 2019
Fmr. Sec. of Homeland Security Napolitano on Syria ceasefire: "I think it was a great day for Turkey, and a great day for Russia. It wasn’t a great day for the US, and certainly not a great day for our allies, the Kurds."https://t.co/nd1lXePhj6
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) October 20, 2019