The TSK is currently developing its strategy for the operation, which will most likely be launched in the middle of March. The ground operation is planned to be the final strike against the terrorist organization. It will follow upon a series of aerial attacks that have seriously disrupted the organization, bringing it to the brink of collapse. Reports indicate that communications between PKK leaders was seriously disrupted by the operations and that the distrust that emerged following the severing of communications has brought the organization to the edge of dissolution. The TSK has set up military bases at high elevations in the Cudi, Gabar, Küpeli, Tanin and Kato mountains, strategic points used by the PKK militants for infiltration into Turkey. The bases will include helicopter landing facilities, thermal cameras and artillery equipment.
What FP Passport fails to ask is why after numerous air strikes and incursions is Turkey moving against against northern Iraq? The official line is of course that it is aiming a final blow at the PKK (sounds like an Israeli phrase these days), which could very well be true. Information is sketchy regarding how much damage was actually inflicted on the PKK. The second possibility is that Turkey’s initial strikes were not successful and they are moving to correct past mistakes and keep the PKK on the defense. Lastly, the move may come as a “Wag the Dog” style national security diversion from domestic issues such as the headscarf. Indeed, the only think that could distract the Turkish military from the evils of covered hair is the Kurdish independence movement. I’ll continue to follow the issue and watch for signs as to the nature and reasoning behind the preparations.