Crisis Agreement

It`s going to take a lot of work. The military monitoring committees, made up of representatives from both parties and responsible for implementing the agreement, should specify their terms and conditions. They will need the full support of their respective governments, senior military commanders and foreign sponsors. The last group, in particular Turkey, Russia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates, should cooperate, although they fear that the success of the agreement will diminish their influence on the ground. All have more to gain from a functioning, stable and united Libya than from a Libya that remains divided and chaotic, or that falls back to war. Ceasefire agreements will take some time and will require strong support from the UN Security Council, including the establishment of a monitoring mechanism. But tangible progress is also needed in defining and implementing the ceasefire commitments of both sides in order to create the appropriate conditions for the UN-backed political talks, which are scheduled for November. The view under which a more productive dialogue with Ankara could resume would be to concretely support Turkey in the implementation of the Moscow agreement on Idlib. Perhaps NATO could, for example, help Turkey strengthen its defence for the next showdown. Considerable humanitarian efforts are also needed. The area where Turkey`s allies or a coalition of them could make a real difference would be technical assistance in the difficult task of sorting out armed groups and fighting HTS and other jihadists.

If the Turkish government does not clarify its strategy in this area and, to put it bluntly, the Gordian knot of its dangerous links, the inevitable resumption of the Battle of Idlib can only end badly for it. Before the Munich Accords, Hitler`s determination to invade Czechoslovakia on 1 October 1938 had caused a major crisis in the German command structure. In a long series of memos, Chief of Staff Ludwig Beck protested that he would start a world war that Germany would lose and urged Hitler to get out of the planned war. Hitler called Beck`s arguments against the war “childish calculations of forces.” On August 4, 1938, a secret army meeting was held. Beck read his detailed report to the assembled officers. They all agreed that something had to be done to avoid some catastrophe. Beck hoped they would all retire together, but no one resigned except Beck. His successor, General Franz Halder, sympathized with Beck and both conspired with several generals, Admiral Wilhelm Canaris (head of the German secret service) and Count von Helldorf (Berlin police chief) to arrest Hitler when he gave the order to invade Hitler.

This plan would only work if Britain gave a strong warning and a letter to fight for the preservation of Czechoslovakia. This would help convince the German people that a certain defeat awaits Germany. Agents were therefore sent to England to tell Chamberlain that an attack was planned against Czechoslovakia and by their intention to overthrow Hitler if that were the case.