Turkey is leading the war on the northern front of Syria in Kessab

The latest concurrent attacks on Kessab and Aleppo were planned and facilitated by Turkey’s security forces while the execution of the plan was under Chechnian leadership. It is not a coincidence that 3 Checnian leasders have been leading these onsloughts – Salah al-Deen al-Shishani, his deputy Muhanad, and abou-Mousa al-Shisahni – in Kessab.

Ankara has succeeded for the first time to combine the jihadist groups and organise their combat operations under one leadership including the mercenaries belonging to al-Qaeda affiliated groups such as the ‘Islamic front’ jihadist group and the ‘mouhajeereen wa al-ansar’ army, or even the local Turkmen. However, Logistic support is not the only way Turkey is involved.

In Aleppo, the military support is apparent despite being limited by the quality and the quantity of the arms provided. For example, the fighting terrorist groups have been supplied with American made Tau missiles, which are classified as a second generation anti-artillery missile, which does not provide the user with much advantage on the ground.

In Kessab, Turkey’s support constitutes both logistic and military intervention where the Chechnians and the ‘Sham al-Islam’ Moroccan jihadist group, led by the late abou-Ahmad al-Maghribi, tried to infiltrate the costal northern parts of Syria where they have no hosting environment what so ever.

The Syrian army however has managed to contain the assault and regained control over the Mount of Chalma and blocked the roots leading to al-Samra village and the hills surrounding the strategic 45 observatory. As a result, the Turks were in favour of focusing on the front in Aleppo.

The political analysis for the progress of events on the ground, particularly taking into account that ‘The Islamic State of Iraq and Sham’ also known and ‘DAESH’ was excluded and not allowed to participate in the northern front which heavily was conducted by al-Qaeda affiliated groups such as ‘jubhat al-Nousra’ front and ‘Ahrar al-Sham’ group, indicates Turkey’s role in these events since al-Qaeda affiliated groups work in liaison with Turkey’s security forces whereas DAESH is affiliated to al-Baghdadi supported by Saudi Arabia.

Political analysis of the events also show that the attack on Kessab at this time point was planned to distract the army and pull it from the centre towards the periphery. This hypothesis is supported by the fact that the Turkish government had rejected assistance from Jamal Maarouf and refused to collaborate with ‘the Syrian revolutionists’ front who are strongly backed by Saudi Arabia and thereby denying Saudi Arabia any right to interfere with the revelations of the attack. In addition to this goal, this attack was a tactic to shift media attention away from the defeats and losses of the jihadist groups in al-Qalamon, Homs, and the eastern Ghouta teritoties.

Translated from Deema Naseef’s Report


AL Mayadeen


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