Turkish-backed Arab militias are becoming an increasingly frequent presence in operational theaters, from Libya to Syria to Armenia. Whereas Turkish diplomats once claimed they were an ally in the fight against the Islamic State, the Turkish military and intelligence service has increasingly employed Islamic State veterans to further Turkey’s interests across the region.
The Rojava Information Center, which operates out of Kurdish-controlled northeastern Syria, for example, has identified several dozen Islamic State veterans now working with Turkish-backed forces. These militias have engaged in ethnic cleansing, kidnapped women and girls, and otherwise sought to upset and change the social order. As they …read more