It is now being reported Turkey has invaded Syria to prevent ISIS from destroying the tomb of Sulieman. This tomb is twenty miles inside Syria on the banks of the upper Euphrates River. As such, it is a deep incursion into Syria; it is a major escalation of combat between the Sunni Turks and the Sunni ISIS fanatics.
We are now seeing several levels of near total warfare in the Middle East. The first level is between the Sunni, in general, and the Shia, in general. The second level is an internal civil war between so called “moderate Sunni” and the Sunni ISIS and Al Qaida fire breathers. It is important for “the West” to remember ISIS is a Sunni Muslim group; Al Qaida is a Sunni Muslim group; finally, there are both Sunni moderates and hard liners. Saudi Arabia is full of hard line Sunni Muslims who belong to a sect that may not actually support Al Qaida. Jordan is a moderate Muslim nation seriously upset with ISIS for burning the captured Jordanian pilot alive just like Edward Woodward in the horror classic, “The Wickerman.”
Turkey is a NATO member. Turkey may have deployed inferior mobile military forces much deeper into Syria than they can now support. If that is what has happened, similar to the BlackHawk Down movie incident in Somalia, we may have a disaster on our hands. It is also important for people to understand Turkey can, under clause five, ask for NATO military assets to bail it out.
The situation bears close watch due to the “drag in factor.” The bottom line here is Turkey has now openly deployed NATO combat forces inside Syria. The results of that remain to be seen.