For Turkey, U.S. Exit From Syria Is an Opportunity—and a Risk by Yaroslav Trofimov – Wall Street Journal
President Trump’s abrupt decision to withdraw U.S. troops from east Syria, transferring the region to Turkish military control, goes beyond the wildest expectations of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
For Mr. Erdogan, this may also turn into an example of the need to be careful what you wish for.
Turkey, which was angling to seize from U.S.-backed Syrian Kurdish forces a much more modest swath of land along its southern frontier, could now become the pivotal power in Syria, establishing a protectorate over a vast and oil-rich territory.
Already, Mr. Erdogan is seeing his ambitions for regional leadership validated by the White House, as Turkey turns from the target of frequent American criticism (and even economic sanctions) to an indispensable partner in Syria and beyond. Mr. Trump even accepted an invitation from Mr. Erdogan to visit Turkey in 2019…