Turkey announces a proposal for repatriation of Syrian refugees & creation of a “safe zone” in northern Syria (in Kurdish areas)
Plan: 140 villages hosting 5,000 people; 10 districts with 30,000 population.
Population engineering if there was ever one.
This is also good timing for the Islamic State. Why:
At best, you could say it's work in progress against ISIS in those areas.
In reality, things have been falling apart under the surface lately.
Once Turkey seized those areas, the rest (Deir Ezzor, southern Hasaka, Raqqa) will almost automatically fall under Turkey's influence. Not immediately obviously.
It disrupts the US presence in eastern Syria, and Iran will be happy to see this unravelling at this critical juncture.
It also downsizes the Kurdish SDF.
I'm sure Turkey promised Russia something.
Once the areas change hands, expect new recruits for ISIS (not because people hate Turkey more, but because of the sheer change in the security architecture)
#Turkey invasion will be probably welcomed by more people than we may have imagined. Those include regime elements, locals, and maybe even in the USG.
But that attitude will change if Turkey does take in ISIS fighters and deal with them on their behalf, in the same way they wanted Iraq to do. A state actor instead of a non-state actor.
"Kurdish fighters ... have warned of all-out war with Turkey in northeastern Syria, where more than 70,000 Islamic State fighters and their families are held."
70,000 *including* ISIS fighters & their families.
That was freshly after it purchased Russia's S-400, ,uch to the chagrin of the US.