Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar (center) oversees Operation Claw-Tiger with his top military commanders at the Army Command Control Center in Ankara on June 17. (Arif Akdogan/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

The Thinking behind Turkey’s Boots on the Ground in Iraq (AUDIO INTERVIEW)

The Media Line speaks with a Turkish analyst about the latest development in Ankara’s ongoing war against Kurdish separatists

Turkey on Wednesday widened an aerial and artillery offensive against the Iraq-based Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), begun on Monday, by sending in ground troops. It has used both air and artillery strikes in Iraq before, but boots on the ground is something new.

Turkey accuses the PKK of backing Turkish Kurds who have long been seeking autonomy.

To find out more about this development – and the thinking of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has existing military commitments in both Syria and Libya and elsewhere, something critics call “neo-Ottomanization” – The Media Line spoke with Yusuf Erim, chief political and Middle East analyst for the Turkish public broadcaster TRT.

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