Smoke rises from Ras al-Ain, a town in northeastern Syria, with Wednesday’s Turkish incursion aimed at destroying a Syrian Kurdish militia. (Delil Souleiman/AFP via Getty Images)

Turkey Launches Promised Incursion into Northeastern Syria

Turkey on Wednesday sent warplanes and fired artillery rounds into an area just over the border with Syria, making good on a promise to attack a Kurdish militia it accuses of supporting Turkish Kurds who are seeking autonomy. Dubbed Operation Peace Spring, the move comes just two days after the Trump Administration announced it would be withdrawing US troops who had been providing training and logistical support to the militia, which calls itself the YPG and seeks autonomy for Kurds in Syria. The YPG was also instrumental in destroying strongholds belonging to Islamic State. The Turks, however, prefer to downplay their anti-Kurd ambitions, instead referring to the incursion as the beginning of a plan to create a “safe zone” for displaced Syrians. These Syrians apparently include some of the 3.6 million who have found refuge inside Turkey, something that has led to resentment among Turkish citizens facing high inflation and a faltering economy.

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