Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Syrian-Turkish Military Cooperation

Turkey has been conducting joint military maneuvers with Syria over the last couple of days. On Monday the two nations signed
a technical military cooperation the fields of defense industries and the exchange of technical and scientific information.
Turkish sources have differing takes on the importance of this move. A Turkish Brigadier General from the defense ministry said,
The deal we are signing will form the legal basis of defense cooperation between the defense ministries of the two countries
But an analyst in Turkey called the move "inconsequential" saying,
Turkey has similar deals with more than 60 countries. Besides, the exercise involved at most a total of 60 men from both sides. If it is held only at the platoon level as reported, then really it holds only a symbolic value
So at this point it is unclear exactly what this Syrian-Turkish cooperation portends for the future. The Israeli defense minister called it a "disturbing development." But whether it is a trivial disturbance or something more serious remains to be seen.

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