Blackburn Announces Filing of Legislation for Sanctions Against Turkey for Syria Incursion


U.S. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) on Thursday announced the filing of legislation for sanctions against Turkey despite a temporary ceasefire in Syria.

Blackburn joined U.S. Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) in making the announcement.

“Without reservation, I lend my wholehearted support to this bipartisan, comprehensive sanctions legislation that holds Turkey, its leadership, and its military accountable for its atrocities,” Blackburn said.

The Countering Turkish Aggression Act’s sanctions will remain in place until the administration certifies to Congress that Turkish forces have withdrawn from all locations in the Syrian Kurdish community that they did not occupy prior to the October 9 invasion, Blackburn said.

Turkey agreed to pause military operations for 120 hours while the United States facilitates the withdrawal of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) from a 20-mile safe zone along the border, Vice President Mike Pence said, according to a Foreign Policy story. Once the Kurds leave, the plan is for Turkey to set a permanent cease-fire.

Blackburn said, “While I am encouraged that the lines of communication are open, this five-day pause in hostilities does not make up for the lives lost, families displaced, and homes destroyed over the course of the Turkish incursion. Turkey must be held accountable for its destabilization of northern Syria, as well as its massacre of our Kurdish partners. Russia must not be given any geopolitical space; ISIS must not be allowed to resurge. Until Turkey has agreed to a permanent solution that achieves these objectives, the United States must hold strong and these sanctions must remain on the table.”

Blackburn last week issued a call for sanctions:

“For years, American forces, including Tennessee’s own elite 5th Group out of Fort Campbell, have stood alongside our Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Global Coalition partners to provide safety and security to Syria. Each time the possibility of American withdrawal from the region has been presented, I have called for a second look at the impacts of such a decision.

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Jason M. Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist at outlets of all sizes.




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5 Thoughts to “Blackburn Announces Filing of Legislation for Sanctions Against Turkey for Syria Incursion”

  1. This is a safe do nothing measure.
    How about some Legislation with teeth requiring our Government to enforce our Bill of Rights, our Civil Rights, instead of letting the Radical Anti-American Left and RINOs whittle away and destroy our First, Second, Fourth,Fifth, Sixth, Seventh and Fourteenth Amendments with Red Flag Law and direct assaults on the Second and First Amendments by the radical anti American Left billionaires????

  2. William R. Delzell

    Is the good freshman Senator willing to risk her own life in the Mid-East since she is so eager for a continued U.S. military commitment to the Turkey/Syria region? When she was 18, she could hide behind her gender to avoid having to register for the anti-male Sexist (I mean, Selective) Service System. For her to sanctimoniously play with the lives of American youth (male or female) while she gets to stay home and steal blood money from our soldiers and brag about how “brave” she is really makes me sick to my stomach!

  3. Ralph

    A vote to stay in Syria is a vote for globalism, just that simple. Sen. Blackburn may be setting herself up for major embarrassment by emotionally pandering to the Kurdish diaspora in Nashville, instead of duly considering the history, recent and not so recent, in the region.

    In this age of diminished attention span, one may reasonably ask if she is even aware of the heinous terrorist acts that have been committed by the Kurds in the name of establishing a “homeland”, one that never existed? If there is a “homeland” to be established for the Kurds, look to western Persia, their ancestral home.

    She is falling into the “McCain Mindset” and being led by the nose to distinctly globalist policies. Very disappointing.

    Perhaps she could take a lesson from Sen. Paul – over 5 years ago he addressed the Senate on the folly of intervening in Syria ( In that beginning of that address, he provided this simple formula:

    Intervention (by foreign powers such as the US) topples a secular dictator (such as Qaddafi and Hussein), chaos ensues, and radical jihadists emerge.

    That formula has been proven in Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan, Egypt and Syria. As it stands today, there is a food crisis in the region, one that has been foisted upon them due to war and chaos. In the most recent report on the global food crisis ( the FAO notes that Syria, Yemen and Afghanistan are among the nations worst affected.

    That’s what she’s voting for and in doing so she is simultaneously condemning the Syrian people, Kurds included, to continuing chaos and misery.

    The five day interval, negotiated by Vice President Pence and Secretary of State Pompeo, will allow time for the legitimate Syrian government to establish a countervailing military force in the region – a region of their own country that was previously denied them by the illicit occupation facilitated by US (along with Turkish, Saudi, Kuwaiti and Qatari) funding, arms, and advisors. A region that not only houses the major oilfields, but also is one of the most agriculturally productive.

    President Erdogan recognizes that and simply wants the cross border incursions by Kurdish terrorists into Turkey to stop and to repatriate over 3.5M Syrian refugees that his country is currently providing for. Without question, he would much prefer that Syria (and her invited allies, Russia and Iran) bear the burden of doing so and he is giving them 5 days to do so.

    And Sen. Blackburn wants to derail that? Painfully short-sighted, even absurd. Perhaps the Kurdish diaspora could spend less time influencing US politics and more time rebuilding their host countries. The US is only hosting the Kurds by default, and the socioeconomic impact that the Kurdish diaspora has imposed on Nashville should, perhaps, be more closely investigated. If it’s positive, terrific, let’s have more. If it’s negative, then let’s do what we can to provide optimal conditions for repatriation.

    Her role as a US Senator is to vote in the interests of the state of Tennessee writ large, not some vocal minority skilled in public relations. She is no longer a representative, but a senator – it’s a different role and one that she does not seem to recognize in her actions.

  4. Silence Dogood

    If it doesn’t work, quit doing it. Senator Blackburn, that Kurdish thing did not work. Please provide new ideas not emotions on this issue. You are arguably one of the most important people in the world. Step up your game.

    1. Ralph

      Spot on – and she needs to also recognize that her role is no longer a representative, but a senator, 17th Amendment notwithstanding. As such, her responsibility is to the state, not some vocal minority in her (former) district.