Violence continued in Syria today, with a number of civilian protesters killed. The focus however was off the coast, where America’s newest aircraft carrier, the USS George H. W. Bush, has taken up a position just outside of Syrian territorial waters, after a deployment near the Straits of Hormuz.
There was no official explanation for why the US would deploy the carrier there, but it comes amid growing speculation that NATO-ally Turkey is poised to launch an invasion of Syria, and the possibility that a US-backed regime change may be in the offing.
Turkish President Abdullah Gul has already suggested that they might use the pretext of Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) operations inside Syria for the offensive, though reports suggest that the real reason would be to seize territory to house the large number of refugees from Syria which have poured across the border.
Though Turkey’s government has a long history of supporting the Assad regime, the government has not only condemned Assad but has vigorously backed the more militaristic rebel factions in Syria, allowing the Free Syrian Army to set up shop in Istanbul and providing access to their commanders through the Turkish Foreign Ministry.