« on: October 09, 2014, 05:18:22 am »
Kobane's gonna fall. The UK and USA are warning about "the limits of air-power"...which you'll notice was never mentioned at all last month, while we were debating getting involved with our air forces. So, they're managing expectations which means they expect a clusterfuck which will decimate the PKK.
That and ISIS has already entered the city. Reports of heavy fighting inside the town mean they've established a hold somewhere in the town itself and are moving fighters in via the breach.
Turkish military are still sat on their hands, waiting for ISIS and the Kurds to kill each other off, presumably. What I don't get is "why now?" ISIS previously besieged the town in July, not to any great amount of success. Suddenly, they've flipped around from the Iraqi theatre back to Syria...I can see the strategic importance of the town, controlling a border crossing with rail access will give them the means to acquire a lot more men, money and material from within Turkey (not to mention control the black market in goods heading out of Syria - never forget, ISIS funds itself via criminal means which include antiquities and oil smuggling)...but I don't see why now.
And that bothers me. ISIS are very unpredictable in their overall strategy, despite having what I would otherwise characterise as a very controlled military council and chain of command. Meaning, it's not just happenstance and coincidence when they do something, it means they had a plan and this works as part of the next stage. Just like when they took Fallujah and, apparently, sat on their hands for six months...they weren't doing nothing, they were building up a collection of western hostages, they were moving troops and material into Anbar for the move on Mosul, they were securing alliances with local tribes and other militant groups. But you wouldn't know that to look at them.
So what's the plan here? My guess is to strike hard against the Kurdish Supreme Committee. Taking Kobane allows them to move troops into the region more freely, and harass and attack Kurdish fighters in the area. Turkey will tacitly go along with such a plan, as we're seeing, and it allows ISIS to eliminate "Euphrates Volcano" - the PKK/FSA alliance against ISIS, who would presumably be a lynchpin in US plans to combat ISIS on the ground.