The Reuters headline, “Turkish army thrusts deeper into Syria, monitor says 35 villagers killed”, makes it possibly interesting to review a post from October 2014, Turkey & the New Ottoman Empire. It hypothesizes a future that, at this moment, does not exist. Yet such is the fluidity of the situation that territorial expansion of Turkey, either de facto or de jure, still reflects a possible outcome.
An interesting flip would be concomitant Kurdish expansion. It could be fostered by Turkey as a part of a solution to their unwinnable war. This is the kind of event that limits extrapolation as a predictive technique. A scenario characterized by ground-creep suddenly morphs into something markedly different.
Relative to the other players, Turkey and “the Kurds”, or the five or so groups of them, are unique to this region in the degrees of their Western cultural affinities. Cultural affinity is not of great significance to the diplomatic mindset, which is typically occupied with statecraft, geopolitics and, for us, the universal rights of man.
But neglected though it is, cultural affinity may figure importantly in what solutions embody inherent stability. Perhaps the map of the Middle East should be redrawn one more time.
A review of the ISIS/Iraq/Syria theater is forthcoming.