A late November attack on Turkish soldiers in northern Syria, which killed four troops, was initially and falsely blamed on a Syrian airstrike by Turkish officials. Turkey met with Russia over the matter, who confirmed that this wasn’t the case, and indeed that the indication was that the attack wasn’t an airstrike at all, but an ISIS suicide bombing.
ISIS was quick to take credit for the bombing the day it happened, so it wasn’t clear why Turkey needed a solid week to concede that their initial claim of an airstrike was wrong. The Pentagon, however, is trying to sell Turkey on the idea that everyone is wrong and Iran attacked them for no apparent reason.
Unnamed Pentagon officials quoted in the Turkish press offered no evidence of Iranian involvement, but noted that the site of the attack, which again apparently was an ISIS suicide attack, was sort of close to some places where Shi’ite militias are located, and since Iran is a Shi’ite state “it might be Iran.”
The Pentagon warned Turkey they don’t support the ongoing offensive against the ISIS city of al-Bab because it is too close to Kurdish-held territory and they don’t want to see fighting between Turkish and Kurdish forces. Instead, it seems, they’re hoping to suck Turkey into a fight with Iran.
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