Several members of NATO are currently weeping crocodile tears about the terrible luck of the Kurds, thus masking the fact that they had in fact green-lit « Operation Peace Spring » in advance. To crush any doubt, the General Secretary of the Alliance, Jens Stoltenberg, journeyed in person to Ankara, three days after the beginning of combat, to declare NATO’s support for Turkey.
Jens Stoltenberg, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu, on 11 October 2019, in the White Palace in Ankara.
Germany, France, Italy and certain other countries, who as members of the EU condemn Turkey for its attack in Syria, are co-members of NATO, which, while the attack had already begun, declared its support of Ankara. The General Secretary of the Alliance, Jens Stoltenberg, made this support official during a meeting on 11 October in Turkey with President Erdoğan and the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Çavuşoğlu .
« Turkey is on the front line in this extremely volatile region – no other Ally has suffered more terrorist attacks than Turkey, no other country is more exposed to the violence and turbulence coming from the Middle East », said Stoltenberg, acknowledging that Turkey has « legitimate preoccupations for its own security ». After having suggested – diplomatically – « action in moderation », Stoltenberg claimed that Turkey is a « powerful NATO ally, important for our collective defence », and that the Alliance is « strongly engaged in the defence of its security ». For this purpose, NATO has increased its aerial and naval presence in Turkey, and has invested more than 5 billion dollars in bases and military infrastructures. Apart from this, it has deployed an important command centre (not mentioned by Stoltenberg) – LandCom – responsible for the coordination of all Allied ground forces.
Stoltenberg stressed the importance of « missile defence systems » deployed by NATO in order to « protect the Southern frontier of Turkey », to be supplied in rotation by the Allies. On this subject, the Minister for Foreign Affairs Çavuşoğlu extended special thanks to Italy. Indeed, since 2016, Italy has deployed in the South-Eastern province of Turkey, Kahramanmaras, the « aerial defence system » Samp-T, co-produced with France.
A Samp-T unit consists of a command and control vehicle and six weapon-delivery vehicles each armed with eight missiles.