Over explicit American protests, Turkey this week attacked an American-allied Kurdish-led militia in the northern Syrian town of Afrin, killing nearly 300 fighters. The Kurdish YPG militia were America’s boots on the ground in the successful war against ISIS, and the Department of Defense earlier this month announced a plan to support a 30,000-strong force. That plan is in shambles now after Turkish fighters and tanks crushed their strong point in Afrin.
Vice President Pence’s Middle East trip was one of the ultimate feel-good moments in American diplomatic history. But before we feel too good about ourselves, we should take stock our strategic humiliation in Syria.