The United States should realise that giving Turkey everything it wants in order to expand NATO will not put it on the right track, former member of the US House of Representatives Tom Garrett said in an interview with North Press Agency on Monday.
Commenting on the impact of the escalating war between Israel and Hamas on the situation in Syria, Garrett noted that attention has been shifted away from the atrocities Turkey commits against a predominantly civilian population in northern and eastern Syria.
“There has always been something more important in terms of who determines what gets our news attention, which I think compounds the tragedy of the Kurdish people and certainly magnifies it in North and East Syria, the Rojava region,” the American politician said.
Garrett also highlighted other ongoing conflicts around the world that have similarly received little media attention in the US, such as the civil war in Myanmar and the displacement of ethnic Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh.
The former US representative expressed concern about the shifting priorities of the US administration, stressing that the US had not retained a sufficient level of commitment towards reliable groups, especially after the withdrawal from Afghanistan. He said that the US should return to a foreign policy approach that prioritises an unwavering commitment to the northern regions of Syria, extending into Iraqi Kurdistan.
Garrett also suggested that Turkey had leveraged the West into making concessions for aggressive operations which aim to gain greater regional influence. According to Garrett, “this translates into oppressing the Kurds and controlling large swathes of Syria.”
Garrett warned that the US has tolerated Turkey’s actions in North and East Syria in return for approval of Sweden and Finland’s NATO accession bid. “The price is paid by our friends in blood on the ground, ” he said. “We keep thinking we can feed the alligator and hope it eats us last, and that just doesn’t work.”