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Fall of Afrin: Turkey’s Vietnam or Washington’s nightmare?

Following the fall of the Syrian city of Afrin to Turkish forces March 18, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's threats to expand operations to other regions controlled by Syrian Kurdish forces seem credible.
Turkish forces and Free Syrian Army are deployed in Afrin, Syria March 18, 2018. REUTERS/ Khalil Ashawi - RC1526525050

The fall of Afrin to Turkish forces March 18 came as a surprise to most parties involved in the Syrian crisis. Experts, observers and even international anti-Islamic State coalition officials thought that the Syrian Kurdish fighters would have put up a stronger resistance to protect the land and that Turkey’s victory would come at a great cost.

Following the decision by the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) to hand over the city center without engaging in urban warfare against the Turkey-led Free Syrian Army (FSA) forces, most now believe that Turkey’s military intervention in Afrin is a prelude to a wider offensive against other cities under the control of Syrian Kurdish forces.

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