Should Washington put boots on the ground in Syria, it "will most likely delegate key responsibilities to the groups the US backs. Perhaps, they will create a new 'coalition.' The US will probably involve the Free Syrian Army (FSA); perhaps some Kurdish militias. In addition, they will involve armed forces of the Gulf countries. They could also reach certain agreements with Turkey, but this is highly unlikely since Ankara will not tolerate working together with the Syrian Kurds," he said.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his supporters maintain that the Syrian Kurds, primarily the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing, the People's Protection Units (YPG), are affiliated with the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), an organization which Ankara considers to be a terrorist group. As a result, Turkish authorities oppose any assistance to Kurdish fighters in Syria.
Sergey Balmasov, an expert on the Middle East Institute at the Russian International Affairs Council, shared these sentiments, pointing to the Kurds as the Pentagon's natural ally.
"Apart from the Kurds, there are numerous groups which say that they are affiliated with the Free Syrian Army. Perhaps, the United States will support them," he said.
These comments came in response to unconfirmed reports that the Pentagon might recommend the White House to deploy conventional ground combat forces to Syria as part of a larger strategy to defeat and destroy Daesh. US President Donald Trump has directed US Secretary of Defense James Mattis to devise a viable strategy to put an end to the brutal group which must be presented to the administration by the end of February.
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