The United States is moving to contain Turkey’s “geo-political ambitions” in the Middle East, following its troop deployment in Iraq and downing of a Russian jet last month, says a journalist and analyst in Virginia.
“Turkey has some geo-political ambitions of its own in the region and I think one concern that the Americans have is that Turkey may go rogue or may eventually overstep the bounds of what the Americans find to be acceptable within the framework of the NATO coalition,” Keith Preston, director of attackthesystem.com, told Press TV on Thursday.
Preston explained that while Washington shares the same goal with Ankara with respect to Syria— which is removing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power– it is nonetheless concerned that the NATO ally is pushing the envelope in some corners where US interests are involved.
“It’s true that Turkey and the United States both wish to see the regime of President Assad in Syria deposed and that’s a core objective they both, Turkey and the United States, have. Both nations also regard Daesh as a weapon against President Assad and that’s why the United States has been a bit lackadaisical in terms of its war against ISIS (ISIL) in Syria,” the analyst noted.
“Americans are also concerned about Turkey stepping out of line a bit by shooting down the Russian plane recently,” he said.
“I think the Americans are somewhat concerned about the fact that that will have the impact of initiating a confrontation between the United States and Russia; and that’s something that the Obama administration does not want; and I think that incident was a bit concerning to the Obama administration and It looks like they are trying to rein in Turkey a little bit,” Preston argued.
On Wednesday, US Vice President Joe Biden called on Turkey to pull its troops out of Iraq as they have been deployed “without the prior consent of the Iraqi government.”
“What Joe Biden wants now is for the Turks to be a little bit restrained,” Preston said.
In another move, the US military announced Wednesday that it was withdrawing 12 F-15 aircraft from Turkey’s Incirlik Air Base.
“The United States was a bit alarmed by what happened with the Turks shooting down the Russian plane,” said Preston. “They are concerned about a confrontation with Russia. I think they are trying to mend fences with Russia.”
On September 30, Russia began an air campaign against Daesh terrorists in Syria. Washington accused Moscow of targeting US-backed militants in the country, rather than focusing on the terrorists.
The US and some of its regional allies, including Saudi Arabia and Turkey, have been backing what they call “moderate” militants fighting against the Syrian government. Some of those militants, who received American arms and training, later jointed the brutal ISIL movement.