1 Chronicles 5:8-9 …and Bela the son of Azaz, son of Shema, son of Joel, who lived in Aroer, as far as Nebo and Baal-meon. He also lived to the east as far as the entrance of the desert this side of the Euphrates, because their livestock had multiplied in the land of Gilead.
The northern part of Syria is back in the news again. This is ancient Azaz. Currently the Kurds are sandwiched by Turkey. It would appear Turkey is trying to squeeze the Kurds west of the Euphrates River. Turkish President Recep Erdogan has made it clear to the Kurds they belong east of the Euphrates River. Erdogan is also upset with President Trump for supporting the Kurds. With Operation Euphrates Shield, Turkey drove a wedge in the area occupied by the Kurds. Turkey crossed the Syrian border to create the wedge.
See attached video for geography of area and analysis.
July 3, 2017: It would appear the Free Syrian Army and Turkish forces are uniting against the Kurds. The Kurdish stronghold in the area is Afrin, Syria. Planning has been taking place for the last two months to remove the Kurds from the area.
“At the first stage, we plan to take control the city of Tall Rifaat, as well as the local airbase, and then we plan to begin with the siege of Afrin, which is under the control of Kurdish YPG forces. Our goal is not to enter the territory of Afrin, but rather to clear the territories located near the Turkish border from YPG.” -Anonymous Syrian commander.
“The operation can start at any moment. The Turkish forces are stationed in Marra, Azaz and in the north of Idlib. Only those FSA units which were previously involved in the Euphrates Shield will take part in the upcoming operation. The US-backed FSA militants won’t participate in the fighting in the Afrin area. We don’t trust them, as they can pass information on to the Kurdish self-defense units.” -Anonymous Syrian commander.
Nuri Mehmud of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) has made the following statements.
“Turkey has deployed its military and equipment on the Syrian border near the Azaz and Mare region. This activity is taking place because Turkey is preparing to attack Tel Rifat and Afrin. Turkey wants to establish control over these areas and strengthen its influence there. We intend to protect our territories and repel the attack no matter where it comes from.” -Nuri Mehmud, Kurdish YPG.
The western most Kurds are divided and isolated from their fellow Kurds east of the Euphrates River.
“We don’t accept the Turkish state’s presence or invasion in this region in any form. I want to stress that we don’t recognize their alliances either. Our goal and struggle to liberate the Azaz-Jarablus area will continue,” YPG Commander Sipan Hemo.
Recent history is repeating itself. As ISIS is being removed across the region, a vacuum is being created. Peace is not taking place with the removal of ISIS. Fighting between different groups occurs to occupy and control the land where ISIS once roamed.