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Turkey's NATO Member Wants A Quid Pro Quo Bribe From NATO

Updated on November 28, 2019

Turkey, NATO's southern member, was one of its strongest members in terms of being anti-Russian. It has one of the largest military in NATO and was clearly supported by the USA in the past. In fact, American airbases still operate in that country and some 50 nuclear bombs are stored there under American protection. Much of the armed forces use American hardware.

However, under the Trump administration, the two strong leaders of both countries have been on not so good terms, despite how the White House projects the image. Turkey chose to buy the Russian S-400 air defense system instead of the American Patriot system used to defend Israel. This irritated Trump and he then withheld any F-22, F-35, stealth aircraft being deployed there fearing Russia might obtain information about how these can avoid radar detection. Then, Turkey wanted to remove the Kurds along its border for the past year, only to be thwarted by the US via threats of sanctions etc. But, finally Trump relented and opened the flood gates by removing the 100 US soldiers stationed along the border, which acted as a buffer and the Turkish forces swept into the area and joined forces with Russia.

The Quid Pro Quo

Now, Turkey, who is a member of NATO, refuses to agree and sign the NATO Baltic Defense Plan, which would help Poland and Ukraine in their defense against Russia, their partner in Syria. They want NATO to make a political statement supporting them in their removal of the Kurdish people away from the border and the destruction of the YPG, which Turkey claims is a terrorist group (without the YPG forces, ISIS would not have been defeated. The YPG were America's ally and armed by the US). Turkey also wants a statement saying that the US has no interests in Syria and they should not be there.

If the NATO leadership makes such a statement, then, Turkey will sign the Baltic Defense Plan. The catch is that all members of NATO must agree with the plan and sign off on it. So far, all NATO members have except Turkey. Some members call it extortion or bribery, others use a more friendly term like Trump has, a quid pro quo.

Turkey clearly is working both sides. It has its own agenda to remove all the YPG, while the US is still supporting them in eastern Syria, much to Russia's and Turkey's anger. Russia has made deals with the Kurds, ironically the YPG, to build an military airbase in their area for millions of dollars. Turkey has its own aspirations to resume it major role in the Middle East as it once did before WW1. Russia and Turkey are working together there and Putin has a inside friend within NATO now that can stymie other NATO efforts that are against Russia's interests in eastern Europe.

Turkey is Russia's proxy in some ways and cannot be trusted. NATO should expel them out but then they will really be within the Russia orbit.


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