Balkans: January 29, 2003


Several sources report that the Turkish Army is reinforcing its garrisons near the Iraqi border. The reinforcement includes extra supplies and equipment. Turkish press sources now say Turkey will let the US send up to 20,000 troops "through Turkey" into Iraq. That sounds like four reinforced brigade groups. Wargaming has suggested that the US can achieve most of its critical goals on a northern front with three brigade groups (supported by heavy and constant air strikes, of course), as long as the Turkish Army supports it by holding forward positions inside northern Iraq and the US alliance with the Talabania and Barzani Kurd factions remains intact. Four brigade groups is sounds better than three. We'll see what Turkey finally agrees to permit when the time comes, but the 20,000 to 30,000 figures for US forces make sense from an operational standpoint ---especially if Turkey kicks in two or three divisions as back up. Turkey would, of course, insist that its divisions are deployed only to aid in refugee relief and control. (Austin Bay)




Help Keep Us From Drying Up

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling.

Each month we count on your contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage.
Subscribe   Contribute   Close