Last week, Turkey joined the fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), after the group carried out a suicide bombing in the town of Suruç close to the Syrian border, killing thirty-two young socialist activists and students, and injuring many more. Following that horrific tragedy, the Turkish government came under pressure to stop the free movement of ISIS fighters and operatives over the Syrian border.
Despite the bombing of a few ISIS targets, most of Turkey’s firepower has been directed toward the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK). According to Al-Monitor, “The attack on IS was a single sortie against limited targets and closer to the Turkish border, while the one against the PKK was much different […] Some 300 smart bombs were dropped in 185 sorties against approximately 400 PKK targets.”
This week, we spoke with Dr. Osman Sahin, a political scientist and a lecturer at Koc University, about the Turkish government’s decision to commence what it described as a concurrent two-pronged confrontation against PKK and ISIS and the effect of this action on the future of Turkish politics.