Obama Tells Erdogen to Calm Down, Putin's Warning is Real, WW111 May Be Averted For Now

Yesterday's article by Robert Parry at Consortium News titled 'Risking Nuclear War for Al Qaeda?' brought out into the public sphere what was only a rumor until then. The Russians have warned Turkey that if Turkey (with hundreds of thousands of troops massed near the Syrian border) and Saudi Arabia (with its sophisticated air force) that if they follow through on threats and intervene militarily to save their rebel clients, who include Al Qaeda’s Nusra Front, from a powerful Russian-backed Syrian government offensive, then Russia is prepared to use tactical nuclear weapons if necessary to save their 20,000 or so military personnel inside Syria in the face of a Turkish-Saudi onslaught.

The fear swirling among many is driven by the fact that since Turkey is a member of NATO, any such conflict could quickly escalate into a full-scale nuclear confrontation. Today Obama called Erdogen in Ankara, they talked for 1 hr. 20min. and besides offering his condolences on the recent bombings in Turkey it now appears Obama explained clearly to Erdogen that he should calm down and it made clear that the U.S. military would not join an invasion. In addition he apparently told Erdogen that Putin wasn't bluffing and that if Turkey and Saudi Arabia go ahead they will be on their own and that neither the US or NATO would back an invasion.

Yesterday Parry wrote: "the only person who probably can stop a Turkish-Saudi invasion is President Obama." Adding, "The dilemma for Obama is that many traditional U.S. allies, such as Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, have been the principal backers and funders of Sunni terror groups inside Syria, including Al Qaeda’s Nusra Front and to a lesser degree, the Islamic State," Parry explains. "Now, the 'allies' [Turkey and the Saudis] want the United States to risk a nuclear confrontation with Russia to, in effect, protect Al Qaeda.

Obama has answered "No", But that hasn't stopped dangerous events from continuing. Syrian rebels have brought at least 2,000 reinforcements through Turkey in the past week to bolster the fight against Kurdish-led militias north of Aleppo. The re-suppply and re-enforcement route via Turkey has become the sole supply line for Azaz, one of the last areas even nominally under the control of Syrian rebels and their Al-Nusra Front allies.

The Turkish military continues it's shelling Syrian Kurds despite UN Security Council (UNSC) warning on Tuesday which urged Ankara to comply with international law. Also, Russia asked the United Nations Security Council on Friday [this morning] to call for Syria's sovereignty to be respected, for cross-border shellings and incursions to be halted and for "attempts or plans for foreign ground intervention" to be abandoned.

Also today Turkish military vehicles have crossed into a Kurdistani area in Syria, Afrin, just over the border, a Kurdish news agency reported adding that the troops started digging a trench between the towns of Sorka and Meydan Ekbis. According to the agency the construction of a concrete wall on the Syrian border in the area is ongoing as well.

IMO. we are is closer to nuclear war than at any point since the Cuban missile crisis. Russia is steadfast and has international law on its side. Turkey is run by an insane group who is out of control, the Saudis and their fanatical ilk, the Wahhabis and Salafis embrace the doctrine of Takfir; they consider Shia and other non-Sunnis to be apostates (non-Muslims), and therefore frequently worthy of divinely sanctioned slaughter.

Indeed Obama and thankfully Putin are being adults. After today's 'talk' with Erdogen by Obama and yesterday's warning from Putin i suspect and hope that over the next few days the Turks will slowly climb back from the cliff and the adults will be able to use this near miss as a stepping stone at least, or better yet, a revelation that they are both caught up in a drama of immense proportions that is fueled by religious fanaticism.