EDAT SUR – ANF
The Turkish state forces held a handover ceremony where they took the city of Jarablus from the bearded and black-clad ISIS by a military operation act launched yesterday morning, and handed the city over to the shaven, dressed up ISIS. The military operation act was nothing more than the handover of Jarablus city according to the previous agreements with ISIS and other gangs against the gains of Kurdish people.
ACT STARTED IN THE EARLY MORNING
The preparations started days ago for the military operation act. ISIS gangs moved out of Jarablus, while just across the border in Karkamış district people were removed from their homes and around 80% of the city was evacuated. As the people were unsettled with the air of a large military maneuver and a serious war, what the Turkish army actually wanted to achieve was to garner credibility for the idea that the military maneuver was in fact large.
The military operation act started at around 04:00 a.m. The operation started with howitzer and tank fire. Construction equipment opened passages and first groups of gangs and Turkish army tanks entered the Keklice, Kıvırcık and Karakuyu villages 4 and 12-13 kilometers from Jarablus respectively.
PEOPLE CAN’T SEE FROM THEIR DOOR STEPS WHAT THE POOL MEDIA CAN SEE FROM KARKAMIŞ
News on how the Turkish army and the gangs they support advanced fighting “in great heroism” and that there were intense bombing and clashes started to be served through the pool media.
At that moment, we contacted a Syrian villager named Derviş who lives in Karakuyu village in Jarablus. Derviş said: “I am in my front yard, there are no clashes, the construction equipment are clearing out a path for tanks and other military dispatching, and the tanks wait by the railroad. I don’t see clashes.” Derviş said there were no clashes in Jarablus city center either, just that ISIS gangs waited in the city, and those were the groups that were waiting to receive the coming groups.
224 SHOTS AT 63 TARGETS ONLY CREATES STUBBLE FIRE
After Derviş’s account, we start to travel along the borderline and see what was happening for ourselves. There are no sounds of clashes along the border, we only see smoke from stubble fires. We talk to villagers living in Karkamış district’s villages, they don’t give names, the villagers are aware of the act. They tell us Karkamış was evacuated days ago and that rural areas of Jarablus were under howitzer and tank fire since the morning without a single retaliation from Jarablus or its villages. What we see along the way confirms their stories.
BUSINESS AS USUAL IN KARKAMIŞ
We approach evacuated Karkamış where a curfew was declared to create an expectation of a large scale war and a military operation. We think we won’t be allowed into the district because of the curfew. But life is normal in the district, shops are open and everybody is on the streets. No sounds of clashes reach the district straight across the border from Jarablus.
POOL MEDIA PRESENTS STUBBLE FIRE SMOKE AS GREAT FIRES
Pool media are stationed on a hill directly facing Jarablus. There are no other journalists on the hill but them. As the people of Karkamış drink tea on their roofs, pool media workers have bulletproof vests and helmets on to complete the act and they are serving lies to the people, live: “You can see right behind me there are large scale clashes in the region…” There are no bullet sounds in Jarablus center, the skies are bright and there is no smoke to be seen in Jarablus, where they claim 224 shots were fired at 62 targets.
Stubble fires continue. You can tell rural areas in Jarablus and some unimportant positions were actually hit in the morning for show. On the way back, we witness the pool media present the stubble fires as evidence of such a great war and military operation.
Not breaking stride, the pool media likens the military act to the Battle of Marj Dabiq in 1516, the battle with which Ottoman expansion into the Middle East started. This likening expresses their regional longing, but the Ottoman army or the Mamluks were nowhere to be seen. The only thing that could be seen was a military act that caused stubble fires and a handover deal made days ago.
NOT A MANEUVER BUT A DISPATCH
There are almost no military precautions in the region, despite this great operation and clash propaganda. Construction equipment and trucks belonging to the Turkish army are dispatched to the Jarablus region without fear of attack or clashes, with no precautions. This confirms reports by local sources that this “is not a military operation but a weapons dispatch and gangs crossing to Jarablus.”
The villagers say 10 to 15 people have crossed the border from Jarablus to Turkey every day for the last couple of weeks. Villagers say those who crossed are ISIS gangs and claim that those sent to the region as “FSA members” by the Turkish state now, are actually those ISIS members who crossed to Turkey before.
HANDOVER COMPLETED IN THE AFTERNOON
Jarablus, an old Armenian city that was cleared of Armenians due to the Arabisation policies of the Baath regime, is handed over to the Turkish army and allied groups in the afternoon by ISIS gangs. ISIS gangs that didn’t surrender several cities despite the aerial attacks of the international coalition turn the city over to the Turkish army without a fight in a couple of hours.
What we witnessed yesterday in the region and what the locals told us was the implementation of a previously arranged deal with ISIS. They tried to hide a handover ceremony under noise from howitzers and tanks.