Israelis Watch U.S. Abandon Kurds, and Worry: Who’s Next?

  
Via:  krishna  •  2 weeks ago  •  27 comments

Israelis Watch U.S. Abandon Kurds, and Worry: Who’s Next?
President Trump’s abrupt order to withdraw American troops from Syria set off alarm bells among Israeli officials who fear the United States might stop standing up for Israel.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


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Syrian Kurds gathered around a U.S. armored vehicle during a demonstration against Turkish threats near a military base on the outskirts of Ras al-Ain. Credit Delil Souleiman/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

JERUSALEM — Israel’s national security does not immediately depend on who controls the border of Turkey and northern Syria, more than 500 miles from its own territory.

Yet President Trump’s abrupt order to withdraw American troops there and abandon Kurdish forces, who have been   stalwart American allies against the Islamic State , set off clanging alarm bells among officials in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

And for a simple reason: If such a betrayal could befall the Kurds, Israelis from across the political spectrum are suddenly asking, what prevents the same from befalling another staunch American ally?

“A knife in our back,” screamed the headline over a column by Shimon Shiffer in Yediot Ahronot, Israel’s biggest mainstream paper. “The conclusion we draw needs to be unequivocal: Trump has become unreliable for Israel. He can no longer be trusted,” the column read.

In Israel, many see America’s withdrawal, which could expose the Kurds to a Turkish attack, as desertion.

“I feel like a Kurd today,” Dore Gold, a former Israeli ambassador to the United Nations and top foreign-policy official under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, said in an interview.

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Krishna
1  seeder  Krishna    2 weeks ago

Israel under Mr. Netanyahu has  depended heavily  on the Trump administration’s support in confronting Tehran over its nuclear ambitions and over  its expansionist moves  in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen.

Israel believes Iran’s long-term strategy is to base missiles in those countries that can threaten Israel, as a deterrent to a pre-emptive strike — whether by Israel or the United States — on an Iranian nuclear weapons project.

 
 
 
Krishna
2  seeder  Krishna    2 weeks ago

“There’s a growing sense that Trump is backing away from his commitments to allies,” said Emily B. Landau, an arms-control expert at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv.

“I’m not sure Israel’s in the same category as Saudi Arabia and the Kurds. At least I’m hoping that we’re not in the same category. But expectations were forged through Trump’s rhetoric and his behavior, and some of his policy decisions.

And the question is, to what degree will he follow through with it, if Israel really needs the United States?”

Backing away" from his commitment to our allies? I'm wondering how firm his commitment to our allies was in the first place. (Our sleazebag president seems more supportive of our enemies-- such as Russia-- than he is supportive of our allies)

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
2.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Krishna @2    2 weeks ago

Is there a Trump property in Tel Aviv?  That is a good indicator if you are considered an ally.

 
 
 
Krishna
2.1.1  seeder  Krishna  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @2.1    2 weeks ago
Is there a Trump property in Tel Aviv?  That is a good indicator if you are considered an ally.

Sadly enough, that does seem to be Trump's criteria for deciding what country he supports-- and which he opposes.

And what I find ironic is that he himself actually admits it:

Whatever else it may be, Trump’s policy toward Turkey is also a significant conflict of interest, as Trump himself has admitted. In 2015, while running for president, Trump gave an interview to Stephen Bannon, not yet his campaign manager, in which he talked about Turkey. Right away, he admitted that his business interests in the country would make it difficult for him to deal with Turkey with a clear mind.

“I have a little conflict of interest ’cause I have a major, major building in Istanbul,” Trump  told  Bannon during a Breitbart radio show. “It’s a tremendously successful job. It’s called Trump Towers—two towers, instead of one, not the usual one, it’s two.”

 
 
 
Kavika
3  Kavika     2 weeks ago

Not only should Israel be concerned about the US commitment but should really be concerned that Iran will now have a huge role in Syria...

The Israelis should feel like Kurds, there are 200,000 Kurds living in Israel and many are part of the Israeli Defence Force.  

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1  seeder  Krishna  replied to  Kavika @3    2 weeks ago

True.

And during the wars in Iraq, of course the Israelis wanted to join the coalition fighting Saddam. But they were told no to participate-- and for good reason (if Israel were to be part of the coalition, Arab states wouldn't not support the effort).

But what is not widely known is that Israel did join the war against Saddam-- they just did it secretly!

(Although word leaked out, many people are not aware of the Israeli role is supporting the Kurds)

Former covert Israeli forces 'training Kurds in Iraq'

Fri 2 Dec 2005 

Israeli firms are carrying out military training and commercial activities in Kurdish areas of north Iraq, according to reports in an Israeli newspaper. Yedioth Ahronoth reported yesterday that dozens of former members of Israel's elite and covert forces were training Kurdish fighters in anti-terrorism techniques.

Other companies, the newspaper said, were involved in telecommunications and infrastructure projects such as the building of an airport at Irbil.

Iraq and Israel are still officially at war, though since the 1960s  Israel  and the Iraqi Kurds have had a relationship. A spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry said his country had no relationship with the new Iraq and it remained "at war".

Israel supported Kurdish rebels against the Ba'ath regime in Baghdad until 1975. The Kurds, who are Muslim, have never been as anti-Israeli as many Muslims in other countries. They have felt persecuted by Sunnis and have resented Yasser Arafat's support for Saddam Hussein.

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
3.1.1  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Krishna @3.1    2 weeks ago

Interesting...... and informative.  Thanks.

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1.2  seeder  Krishna  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @3.1.1    2 weeks ago

You're welcome!

BTW, another thing that isInot widely known.

When American and other coalition forces entered iraq during the Iraq War, they were not stopped by Iraqi tactical nuclear weapons. Why? Because Saddam didn't have any.!

But he might've.

They (well, it was the French actually) were building a nuclear reactor in Iraq!

However unfortunately for Saddam, something happened to that reactor.

(It was an event called "Operation Opera" -- undertaken only after the Iranian "Operation Scorch Sword" did not accomplish its objectives).

 
 
 
Kavika
3.1.3  Kavika   replied to  Krishna @3.1    2 weeks ago

If I remember correctly the Isralies that went into Iraq were  Kurds. They spoke both the Kurdish language and various Arab language. They were familiar with the dialects and customs making them next to impossible to detect.   

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1.4  seeder  Krishna  replied to  Kavika @3.1.3    2 weeks ago

Exactly!

The jews in Iraq-- like the Kurds-- had been persecuted for generations.

When the ancient state of Israel was re-created in 1948, the oppressed Jews of Iraq had a safe place to escape to and of course many did.

During the Iraq wars Israelis wanted to join the war effort but of course their openly doing so would cause many Arab countries to leave the coalition. So the Israelis had to do it covertly.

But the immigrants from Iraqi Kurdistan had an advantage probably no other country had-- there were so many Iraqi immigrants in Israel who could sneak into Iraq to help the Kurds  because not only were they fluent in their native language (Arabic) but they were originally bilingual-- they grew up  speaking Kurdish as well!

(And in addition-- they spoke Arabic with a perfect Iraqi accent!)

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1.5  seeder  Krishna  replied to  Krishna @3.1.4    2 weeks ago

P.S: Kavika I imagine you know this-- but I am posting it for the benefit of others reading it who may not know about the history...

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
3.1.6  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Krishna @3.1.5    2 weeks ago

Call me one that was unknowing!  All good stuff.  BTW....Please don't keep things like this to yourself.

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1.7  seeder  Krishna  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @3.1.6    2 weeks ago
Call me one that was unknowing!  All good stuff.  BTW....Please don't keep things like this to yourself.

Rather than single comments in a discussion, I suppose it would be better to seed articles on that subject-- that way more people will notice the information.

Since its timely, maybe I'll start with a few seeds about the Kurds since that a timely subject..

 
 
 
Krishna
3.1.8  seeder  Krishna  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @3.1.6    2 weeks ago
Call me one that was unknowing!  All good stuff.  BTW....Please don't keep things like this to yourself.

Here's the first one. Just seeded it-- its about Israel's covert activities in Northern Iraq (Kurdistan) during the Iraqi War

.(I previously referred to and linked to the article in a discussion here, but probably only a few people noticed it, so now its a seed:

The Kurdish-Israel Relationship: Former Covert Israeli Forces 'Training Kurds In Iraq' (During Iraq War)

If anyone has already read that newly seeded article-- I will be posting lots more information in the comments there in the accompanying discussion:

 
 
 
Ronin2
4  Ronin2    2 weeks ago

"The world is coming to an end!" This and other false news tonight at 11.

Trump has bent over backwards for Israel.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/trump-hails-anniversary-of-embassy-relocation-to-jerusalem/

Remember the shit storm that caused?

No, how about this gem?

https://www.npr.org/2019/03/25/706588932/trump-formally-recognizes-israeli-sovereignty-over-golan-heights

President Trump signed a proclamation Monday that recognizes Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, formalizing the Middle East policy shift he announced over Twitter last week.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was with Trump at the White House as he signed the presidential proclamation. Prior to the signing, Netanyahu made remarks lavishing praise onto Trump that drew comparisons between the president and the Persian emperor Cyrus as heroic defenders of the Jewish people.

"Israel has never had a better friend than you," Netanyahu said, enumerating several instances in which the administration has delivered on campaign promises favoring the Israeli leader, including U.S. withdrawal from the nuclear deal with Iran, restoration of sanctions on that country and the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital leading to the relocation of American embassy there.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/trump-israel-golan-eu-syria-1.5067270

U.S. President Donald Trump's abrupt declaration that Washington will recognize Israel's sovereignty over the disputed Golan Heights drew strong condemnation from Syria, while the European Union and countries like Egypt and Russia also rejected the overture.

The Syrian government called it "irresponsible," and a threat to international peace and stability. The Foreign Ministry in Damascus also said Syria is now more intent on liberating the Golan , "using every possible means."

The Foreign Ministry in Damascus said Trump's statement confirms "the blind bias of the United States to the Zionist entity," referring to Israel, and added that it won't change "the fact that the Golan was and will remain Arab and Syrian."

The EU reiterated on Friday its position "has not changed" despite Trump's overture.

"The European Union, in line with international law, does not recognize Israel's sovereignty over the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967, including the Golan Heights and does not consider them to be part of Israel's territory," an EU spokesperson told Reuters.

Ah yes, good times good times.

How about this one?

https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-peace-effort-traps-jordan-between-u-s-and-palestinians-11562336231

https://carnegieendowment.org/2018/12/11/trump-s-plan-for-israel-and-palestine-one-more-step-away-from-peace-pub-77905

By contrast, Trump’s reported plan will depart from long-standing U.S. policies on several points. On the negotiating table that Trump is setting, the status of Jerusalem and refugee claims have been removed, and with those files, Palestinians argue, any possibility of an agreement they could sign. Trump’s Middle East peace team is moving forward with a Gaza-plus plan : a statelet in Gaza enlarged by annexing part of the Sinai. U.S. General David Petraeus has described the idea as a “ Sinai Riviera .” The apparent aim is to coax Palestinians into swallowing the bitter pill of indefinite Israeli occupation and eventual annexation of the West Bank. In exchange for Gaza-plus, Palestinians must accept what Netanyahu has dubbed “ a state-minus .” With a healthy infusion of donor money and the easing of movement and access restrictions, Trump and Netanyahu believe that Palestinians can be lulled into trading sovereignty or political and civil rights for an upgrade to their quality of life. While not an entirely novel approach, the administration’s new parameters seem likely to further push the idea that Palestinian agreement to any plan is optional.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/trumps-peace-plan-rings-alarm-bells-in-jordan/

AMMAN, Jordan (AFP) — A controversial US plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace could spell the demise of Jordan and turn it into a “Palestinian state,” Jordanians and analysts warn.

The initiative launched by US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner at a June conference in Bahrain dangles the prospect of $50 billion in investment into a stagnant Palestinian economy.

But it fails to address key issues and demands of the Palestinian side, such as the establishment of an independent Palestinian state, Israel’s occupation in the West Bank, and the Palestinians’ claim of a right to return to homes within Israel from which they fled or were expelled after Israel’s creation in 1948.

Damn the man, why won't he let Israel have their cake and eat it too!/S

The fear mongering and hyperbole is getting out of hand.

 
 
 
JBB
4.1  JBB  replied to  Ronin2 @4    2 weeks ago

So, I hear that moving our embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is going to cost not twice as much, not ten times, but 100 times the amount we were told initially by Trump. That is a lot of Benjamin, um, Netanyahus. Not that that had boo squat to do with Trump abandoning our allies the Kurds. #WorstPresidentEver...

 
 
 
XDm9mm
4.1.1  XDm9mm  replied to  JBB @4.1    2 weeks ago
So, I hear that moving our embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem is going to cost not twice as much, not ten times, but 100 times the amount we were told initially by Trump. That is a lot of Benjamin, um, Netanyahus. Not that that had boo squat to do with Trump abandoning our allies the Kurds. #WorstPresidentEver ...

I'd suggest you check your hearing:

U.S. Embassy Jerusalem
14 David Flusser
Jerusalem 9378322, Israel
Phone: 02-630-4000

Any more questions?

 
 
 
Ronin2
4.1.2  Ronin2  replied to  JBB @4.1    2 weeks ago

So what? What does that have to do with anything?

Trump has supported Israel since his inauguration. Now all of sudden idiots are moaning that he might betray Israel. Right...'

Not that that had boo squat to do with Trump abandoning our allies the Kurds.

Read the headline to the article. It has everything to do with it.

Also, Trump promised during his campaign to remove all US Troops from the never ending financial draining wars. Syria qualifies. So does Afghanistan; but both sides blasted him for trying to talk to the Taliban. Who else can he talk to after Obama's shitstain SOFA agreement the Afghan government. 

Want to blame someone for Syria? Go to the butt munches Bush Jr and Obama. Bush Jr created ISIS/ISIL with his invasion of Iraq and turning it into an Iranian province. The blame Obama for sending US forces into Syria under the guise of the War on Terror- in an effort to remove Assad. To bad the idiot forgot to get permission from the Syrian government; or a UN Security Council Resolution (which Russia and China never would have gone for). This is not even a NATO mission. 

ISIS/ISIL is no longer a viable military force in Syria. They left long ago for greener pastures in Lebanon, Libya, Africa, and Afghanistan. We could stay in Syria forever and never eliminate the remaining ISIS/ISIL. You can't defeat an ideology.

If you and the other chicken hawks are so worried about the Kurds- they accept foreign fighters. Sure they would love the help right about now. 

We have been stuck on stupid forever in regards to foreign policy. Trump tries to extricate us from one quagmire and chicken hawks lose their shit.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
4.1.3  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Ronin2 @4.1.2    2 weeks ago

 You always express what I’m thinking and I don’t have the patience to take time to express. these are things that are positive for the  United States in the long run and yes nobody had the Capone’s before to do those type things because of precisely the type of feedback that we are seeing here and frankly I understand it but the reality is are we going to put our troops in danger forever for lack of a strategic need just to ... well you can fill in the blank on that one 

 
 
 
Krishna
4.2  seeder  Krishna  replied to  Ronin2 @4    2 weeks ago
Trump has bent over backwards for Israel.

So far.

But then the U.S. has also "bent over backwards" for the Kurds as well. (After all, most of the on the ground fighting-- and enormous casualties) have been taken by the Kurds.

So we've "bent over backward"s for our Kurdish friends-- until we suddenly stopped!

And the Israelis (the Jewish ones, anyway) have had more than their share of "fair weather friends"-- and they're not stupid.

 
 
 
Ronin2
4.2.1  Ronin2  replied to  Krishna @4.2    2 weeks ago

BS, and you know it. The Kurds would have been fighting no matter what. We gave them the means to succeed. 

ISIS/ISIL is no longer an organized military threat in Syria. Our false reason for being there is over. Our troops are there illegally.  Assad will not be removed unless Putin gets sick of him.

Maybe it is time the Kurds gave up on trying to carve a Kurdistan out from Turkey, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. It really seems to piss those countries off.  There will never be a Kurdistan unless the powers that be want to fight a war that will result in a true genocide.  Then be willing to prop up Kurdistan financially, militarily, and politically in the UN. Sorry, we already have one "land based air craft carrier" in the ME costing us billions a year and giving us the occasional black eye. We don't need two.

I have nothing against giving the Kurds arms to fight. But, we are in Syria illegally. It is long past time we got out.

 
 
 
Krishna
4.2.2  seeder  Krishna  replied to  Ronin2 @4.2.1    2 weeks ago
The Kurds would have been fighting no matter what. We gave them the means to succeed. 

And then we stabbed them in the back by withdrawing our troops so that Turkey could finally enter and exterminate them.

("Stuck on stupid" doesn't even begin to cover the insanity of this move! :-(

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
4.2.3  Freedom Warrior  replied to  Ronin2 @4.2.1    2 weeks ago

What I also recognize out of these exchanges is that the critics are vastly oversimplifying the situation and complications that exist in all the different relationships over there in Syria and  beyond. It’s not simply a matter of the US pulling out and abandoning some ally, it goes well beyond that and people need to recognize that first understand that they could spend hours trying to sort this all out properly. 

 
 
 
FLYNAVY1
4.2.4  FLYNAVY1  replied to  Freedom Warrior @4.2.3    2 weeks ago

What.... having 150 some American troops integrated with Kurd forces wasn't worth keeping tens of thousands of our allies alive?

It's pretty simple math, and a very inexpensive way of keeping the peace, while eliminating ISIS/ISIL.

 
 
 
Ronin2
4.2.5  Ronin2  replied to  Krishna @4.2.2    2 weeks ago

Wrong, stuck on stupid refers to the twin assholes Bush Jr and Obama. Or do you think Trump caused this mess all by himself? He is not the one that set the conditions to create ISIS/ISIL; nor is he the one that illegally involved US troops in a Syrian Civil War in an effort to remove Assad.

In case you didn't notice none of the Kurds allies are standing by them. France pulled back as well. Wonder why, could it be Turkey threatened to attack their troops as well? So much for France and Britain taking over for the US in Syria. Guess they didn't want their troops without a legal leg to stand on in a Civil War zone either.

 
 
 
Ronin2
4.2.6  Ronin2  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @4.2.4    2 weeks ago

It is more than 150; and you left out the fact they are all there illegally. Period. 

They get attacked and we can't send in backup w/o pissing off Syria, and Russia, China, and Iran (who are all there legally). Not to mention Turkey. 

I notice you left out the fact that France pulled back their 200 special forces operatives that were working with the Kurds as well. 

It's pretty simple math, and a very inexpensive way of keeping the peace, while eliminating ISIS/ISIL.

It is even cheaper to pull out of Syria and let Russia, China, Iran, and Syria (and I guess now Turkey) deal with ISIS/ISIL. Or do you think they are going to let the Caliphate come back and threaten their assets again? 

ISIS/ISIL is not a military force within Syria now. Want to fight them- head to Lebanon, Libya (which we caused), Africa, Yemen (don't go their the Saudis won't appreciate it, as they are supporting ISIS/ISIL to an extent), and Afghanistan (the biggest third world shit hole of the known universe. The Soviets couldn't make that country work, and we never will either.). They like places with weak governments, military, and very diverse populations where Sunni Muslims are a large minority and oppressed. They need breeding easy breeding grounds to grow their ranks.

I have no problem sending arms to the Kurds; but we never should have been in Syria to start with.

 
 
 
Freedom Warrior
4.2.7  Freedom Warrior  replied to  FLYNAVY1 @4.2.4    2 weeks ago

There's no math involved here unless you want to start counting the number of Americans who died in vain.

 
 
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