CIA chief and the territorial integrity of Iraq and Syria


On a rainy day in Paris, with the newspapers headlines talking about the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, the recent words from the U.S. intelligence chief John Brennan were on my mind. Brennan newly declared his intention to continue his mission during the new presidential term and said “something” about the territorial integrities of states like Syria and Iraq.

While top U.S. and Russian diplomats were doing their “best” to broker a possible ceasefire agreement, starting their work during the G20 summit in China and continuing in Geneva, the director of the CIA spoke about the difficulty of upholding the current borders of Iraq and Syria. In fact, Brennan stated that he saw less probability for central governments in Syria and Iraq to function.

However, there is a functioning government in Baghdad, as far as we know in Ankara.

It is obvious that the Middle East is perceived differently in Washington, where they ignore the people living in those countries, their history, their values and their beliefs.

The analysis of a top U.S. official may mean a real catastrophe for future generations living in those states. And the power of people living in the region should not be minimized by leading officials in Western capitals. Such underestimations can cause a catastrophe for Western plans. Above all careful consideration is needed.

9/11: 15 YEARS ON

The Sept. 11 attacks in New York occurred 15 years ago and the world was shaped according to rules set in the post 9/11 era.

Initially in Afghanistan and in Iraq, U.S. troops conducted operations against al-Qaida, which gave birth to a more disturbing actor: DAESH.

Islamophobia has become a factor affecting world politics since 9/11.

Lack of evidence concerning the U.S.-led operation in Iraq to topple Saddam Hussein’s regime because of the existence of so-called chemical weapons has been revealed personally by Tony Blair, then Britain’s prime minister. And he apologized afterwards.

The formula of Western plans as been revealed by the follow-up policies over the course of the post 9/11 era: Create an artificial enemy and reach your goals on the pretext of combatting against this enemy.

Just like DAESH does in today’s world, 9/11 facilitated the realization of Western geographical plans.

And a simple excuse by decision makers was seen to be enough, never mind the fact that thousands lost their lives in the process.


Turkey’s operation in Jarablus and cleansing the Syrian border completely of DAESH brought another problematic situation in Western capitals.

The PYD, a Syrian branch of the PKK, was legitimized by Western decision makers following its so-called combat against DAESH.

Turkey’s recent operation against DAESH made it necessary for Western actors to find another excuse for the support provided to the PYD. It is a difficult task!


*SAADET ORUÇ is a Turkish journalist. She writes columns for Daily Sabah Turkish newspaper
(Published in Daily Sabah on Monday, Sept. 12, 2016)