As the offensive progressed rapidly, it became obvious that such an ambitious operation could not have been possible without Russia’s explicit approval.
First of all, the operation required the Turkish Air Force to enter Syria’s airspace – something Ankara could not have done without consulting Russia. Furthermore, before rechannelling Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) forces to Afrin, Ankara needed assurances from Russia that Bashar al-Assad would not take advantage of the situation and attempt to seize Turkish-controlled positions in the province of Idlib.
Opinion: We have been following this story since January 25 (here).
There have been several issues between Putin and Erdogan, not the least of which was the 2015 downing of a Russian jet that strayed over Iranian air space, or the 2017 shooting of a Turkish soldier by the the Kurdish militia after photographs surfaced of Russian soldiers posing with Kurdish fighters.
But like a script that was written for the nations to follow, Russia and Turkey have mended their ties.
The script is very old:
“Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I am against you, O Gog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal.”
Ezekiel 38:1-6, identifies Russia and Turkey as two of the principal armies that will attack Israel in a still future war:
- Gog is a prince of (Rosh) Russia; a title of a strong leader.
- Magog is the 2nd son of Japheth (a son of Noah) who settled in what is today Russia
- Meshech and Tubal, once a part of (Turkey/ including Armenia.)
It was/is critical that Russia and Turkey find a way to somehow mend their differences just enough to be ready for an attack on the tiny Jewish state to take it’s wealth.
The future war of Gog and Magog brings at least 5 additional armies, find them here.