Turkey’s open backing of Azeri forces and the incursions against Armenian forces by Azerbaijan have been discussed before and readers probably remember these conversations well. At first, it looked like a new Armenian genocide was underway. Once Russia decided to step in to mediate a ceasefire, their own troops were moved into the area.
This is how the agreement was enforced and the hostilities were kept to a minimum. What most did not know was that a codicil was included in the agreement. It was not discussed much, so it is understandable that people did not know. Turkey was allowed to keep its troops in the area by Russia, as a means of overseeing the process.
Now, they have a long term presence in the area. This area is also considered to be a part of the Russian sphere of influence. Putin was even forced to admit to this new reality. The Wall Street Journal has more on the situation. We have isolated the best bits so that those who are trapped outside of the paywall can see what we are talking about.
“When Russia single-handedly brokered an agreement last month to stop fighting between Azerbaijan and Armenia, two former Soviet republics, the Kremlin granted an important concession to Turkey, allowing Ankara to monitor its implementation.
Turkey’s strong military support for Azerbaijan was a reality the Kremlin couldn’t ignore, said Russian President Vladimir Putin. “What can I tell you,” he said on Russian television when asked about Turkey’s broader role in the Caucasus days after fighting stopped last month. “It’s a geopolitical fallout from the downfall of Soviet Union.”
Turkey’s foray into an area the Kremlin has traditionally regarded as its exclusive sphere of influence is emblematic of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s efforts to refashion the NATO member and once-pliant U.S. ally into a power player at the crossroads between Europe, the Middle East and Asia,” reads the report.
There is so much going on in the world right now, it can be hard to notice these types of stories. Putin is not the type of person that comes out to say these sorts of things every day, either. It should be noted by the mainstream media. He’s not someone who is accustomed to going on live television, shrugging his shoulders and saying that Turkey is too much of a force to him to reckon with.
Even those who do not pay close attention to international politics are probably surprised by the rhetoric that Putin is engaging in. These developments are never as simple as they look, either. Russia may want to give the rest of the world a certain idea here but Putin’s motivations are hard to read. There’s a good chance that he is receiving something in return for making this type of concession.
By taking the time to cozy up to Turkish forces, Putin drives a bigger wedge between this country and the United States. The rest of the western world is affected at all. This is one of those instances where Putin may end up looking smarter than people realize once the true depth of what he has done fully dawns on them.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been heading in this direction for a bit now and it’s not like he is doing much to conceal himself here. Sure, he may be keeping appearances as far as NATO is concerned at the moment. This man is not an ally to the west and he does not care who knows it. Turkey also knows that they play a key role in its region.
They are adjacent to Iran and Syria, so Americans and NATO are going to be keeping a close eye on any flareups in the region. Erdogan has already assumed control and there is no turning back now. Maybe he needs to be kicked out of NATO? This would be a good way for him to learn that Putin is not such a great friend to have.