Turkey’s Chief of General Staff. Genral Yagar Buyukanit, said the army was ready to proceed with operations in Kurdistan and is awaiting final authorization from the government. He referred to the recent meeting in Washington D.C. between Prime Minister Erdogan and President Bush as merely a temporary delay which has allowed the armed forces to intensify intelligence activities prior to an armed attack. Bush had talked about Turkey using “surgical operations” but General Buyukanit responded to a question by saying, “surgical operation or not, I cannot say.” He also emphasized, “We are a great state and we do not need approval from anyone. However, there is a different situation in Iraq and the is a must to have the coordination with the Americans in order to avoid friendly fie.” He said it was of no importance to him if politicians met, but the Turkish army must be on guard to protect the nation.
There apparently is a void between what Bush and Erdogan agreed would happen and what the Turkish military believes must occur. Just another example of how the Bush approach to foreign policy always leaves gaps of knowledge.