Why Turkey Won't Fight with U.S. Against Islamic State

(Christian Science Monitor) Alexander Christie-Miller - When Washington sought to rally world and regional partners last week for an assault on the jihadis of the Islamic State, one crucial ally was notably reluctant: Turkey, a NATO member with the alliance's second largest army. Visits to Ankara over the past week by U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Secretary of State John Kerry yielded little, with Turkish leaders publicly refusing to play any military role against IS and forbidding the U.S. to use Turkish soil for strikes against the group. During the Iraq war of 2003, Turkey similarly spurned American overtures to station troops in the country and use its airbases. Asli Aydintasbas, a foreign affairs columnist at Milliyet, says Ankara is doing more to combat IS than its public rhetoric suggests. "They want the Americans to take care of ISIS, but they don't want to have their fingerprints on it."

2014-09-19 00:00:00

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