PRAYER ALERT: The world has recently watched ISIS become the most vicious of many competing terrorist groups in the Middle East. It is the most efficient in seizing territory. It is the most successful in attracting and recruiting individual terrorists. If ISIS gains allies in nearby nations and other global terrorist organizations, its power will multiply.
This is already happening. Nasser al-Wuhayshi, the head of AQAP—al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula—recently swore allegiance to ISIS. Wuhayshi worked closely with Osama bin Laden. He still works closely with bin Laden’s successor, al Qaeda leader Aymanal-Zawahiri. Last year Zawahiri cut ties with ISIS over its brutality and its aggressive efforts to take over al Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria, the Nusra Front.
But now the Nusra Front is reportedly holding war planning meetings with ISIS. With Zawahiri’s implied consent, AQAP has issued a statement calling on all rival militant groups to stop fighting one another. In it AQAP exhorts all Sunni militants to unity against the American-led “international crusade” targeting ISIS. “We assert to the Islamic Nation that we stand by the side of our Muslim brothers in Iraq against the American and Iranian conspiracy and their agents of the apostate Gulf rulers.”
What they call “the apostate rulers” includes the rulers of Shiite-led Iran, Iraq and Syria. But what do they say of Sunni-led Turkey? Turkey shares borders with Iran, Iraq and Syria. Turkey is a member of NATO. It is supposed to be an American ally. On Oct. 12 the US announced that it had finally gotten permission to use Turkey as a base for its anti-ISIS campaign. The next day Turkey denied it. Until last week, Turkey refused to let Kurdish fighters pass into Syria to protect the key border town of Kobani from ISIS. Now Kurds are complaining that Turkey is still balking at letting Kurds pass.
But Turkey is letting Sunni fighters pass to join ISIS. As ISIS gains allies, where does Turkey really stand? There is evidence that Turkey is helping ISIS in order to set the stage for the rebirth of a Turkish empire in the Middle East…
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