With the recent exploding headlines and Ambassador Napper speaking to my International Studies class at Texas A&M, the importance of Turkey’s and the United States relations have been put in the spotlight.
On Wednesday October 3rd, Turkey received artillery shelling across the border from Syria that killed five civilians. This was not the first time Turkey has received shelling from Syria. This past Thursday the Turkish Parliament passed a bill that approved military action across the border against Syria and anti-war protests erupted in the cities including Istanbul.
Turkish officials including Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan have made it clear to Damascus that Turkey will not stand down. When shelling from Syria falls across the Turkish border it has invoked forceful military actions back from Turkey. It is currently day five of Turkish returning artillery fire at Syria. While no causalities have been reported, the significance of the actions are heavily weighting on the international community.
Secretary of State Hilary Clinton has been clear in her support of Turkey and was furious by the actions of Syria. Turkey is a member of NATO. Many have put pressure on NATO to take action against Syria. Article 5 of the Washington Treaty states:
“The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all.”
Currently Article 5 has not been acted upon. I believe it is a delicate balance between the United States and Turkey. If the United States shows its support for Turkey, they will not reach out to NATO for more support. However if the situation continues to escalate, the United States and its NATO allies may find themselves drawn into Syria.
I challenge you to look into the presidential candidates stands on this situation. The world will not stop for the United States election. Like previously mentioned in my article “Big Brother, Where Art Thou?” the international communities next move will be the critical one. This is that next move. So know where does your candidate stand on the Syrian civil war.