Military Escalation, Dangerous Crossroads: Russia-US Confrontation in Syria?
By Prof Michel Chossudovsky
December 15, 2012
On December 14, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed a Pentagon order to deploy 400 US missile troops to Turkey. According to Washington, the security of Turkey, NATO’s heavyweight, is threatened. US military personnel will to be deployed to Turkey in the coming weeks to operate two US Patriot missile batteries.
According to the Pentagon’s spokesman, George Little:
“The United States has been supporting Turkey in its efforts to defend itself,… [against Syria]
“I’m not going to go into precise locations at this time, he added, “but I wanted to let you…know that we signed that order and that we are prepared in the context of NATO to support the defense of Turkey for an unspecified period of time.”
“The purpose of this deployment is to signal very strongly that the United States, working closely with our NATO allies, is going to support the defense of Turkey, especially with potential threats emanating from Syria,” US Air Force News, December 14, 2012)
The Patriot surface-to-air interceptors are deployed to deal “with threats that come out of Syria” According to U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. these threats “include Syrian strikes inside Turkey and fighting between the government and rebels that extends into Turkey” (CNN, December 14, 2012):
“We can’t spend a lot of time worrying about whether that pisses off Syria,” said Panetta [sic] after signing the order Friday. (Ibid, emphasis added)