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A source close to Russian President Vladimir Putin has informed award-winning journalist Robert Parry that Putin has warned Turkey that any attempted ground invasion of Syria will be met with the defensive use of tactical nuclear weapons on the battlefield.

A tactical nuclear weapon also known as non-strategic nuclear weapon refers to a nuclear weapon which is designed to be used on a battlefield in military situations. These differ from strategic nuclear weapons, which refers to weapons that are much larger in destructive power and are typically delivered by ICBM or SLBM missiles (though there are some that are air-dropped).

Parry’s background as a respected investigative journalist includes reporting on the Iran-Contra scandal for the Associated Press and Newsweek. In addition, he's also received the George Polk award for reporting on intelligence matters, suggesting that this information should be treated as a credible warning.

Turkish-Saudi threats of a ground invasion have ratcheted up in the past month, as the finalization of a negotiated Syrian political settlement came closer to fruition, which would potentially usurp the group’s goal of regime change in Syria.

As Vice President Joe Biden pointed out during a speech at Harvard in 2014, that Turkey and Saudi Arabia had “poured hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of tons of weapons into anyone who would fight against [Syrian President Bashar al-] Assad,” going on to point out that “the people who were being supplied were Al Nusra and Al Qaeda and the extremist elements of jihadis coming from other parts of the world.”

According to the report, written by Parry, for Consortium News:

If Turkey (with hundreds of thousands of troops massed near the Syrian border) and Saudi Arabia (with its sophisticated air force) follow through on threats and intervene militarily to save their rebel clients, who include Al Qaeda’s Nusra Front, from a powerful Russian-backed Syrian government offensive, then Russia will have to decide what to do to protect its 20,000 or so military personnel inside Syria.

A source close to Russian President Vladimir Putin told me that the Russians have warned Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that Moscow is prepared to use tactical nuclear weapons if necessary to save their troops in the face of a Turkish-Saudi onslaught. Since Turkey is a member of NATO, any such conflict could quickly escalate into a full-scale nuclear confrontation.

The Russian threat to use tactical nukes in the event of a joint Turkish-Saudi invasion should be taken extremely seriously given the duo’s recent failed attempts to garner U.S. support for a ground invasion under the guise of aiding refugees and assisting “moderate rebels.” In reality, this is simply a non-threatening label for the group’s preferred Islamic extremist organizations in the Syrian theater of war.

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Moscow’s warning comes on the heels of Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir telling CNN that Syrian President Assad must be removed “by force” if a diplomatic solution fails.

The reality in Syria is that the Russian intervention has decimated all insurgent groups on the ground and helped solidify the internationally recognized government's control over the war-torn country, much to the chagrin of the Western-AngloZionist/GCC coalition actively supporting regime change.

Parry breaks down the recent posturing by the Turks, as he highlights the events that have led to the current crisis, writing:

Turkey has left about 100 kilometers of its border open for various jihadist groups to bring in reinforcements and weapons while letting the Islamic State smuggle out oil for sale on the black market. Last fall, after Russia (and a reluctant United States) began bombing ISIS oil-truck convoys, Turkey shot down a Russian bomber near Turkey’s border, leading to the deaths of the pilot and a rescuer.

Now, as the Russian-backed Syrian army makes major gains against the Nusra-dominated rebels around Aleppo and encroaches on Islamic State territory near Raqqa – and as U.S.-backed Kurdish forces also advance against ISIS – Turkey’s Erdogan has grown frantic over the prospects that his five-year project of aiding Syrian jihadists may be collapsing.

Amid this desperation, Turkey has been urging President Obama to support a limited invasion of Syria to create a “safe zone,” supposedly to protect Syrian rebels and civilians in northern Syria. But that humanitarian-sounding plan may well be a cover for a more ambitious plan to march to Damascus and forcibly remove President Assad from power.

That is a goal shared by Turkey, Saudi Arabia and other Sunni states along with Israel and America’s influential neoconservatives and their “liberal interventionist” sidekicks. For his part, Obama has called on Assad “to go” but has favored diplomatic negotiations to achieve that end. Russia has advocated a political settlement with free elections so the Syrian people can decide Assad’s future themselves.

There is an epic battle taking place for the heart of the international system between the West and the “Eurasian Sovereignists," that is playing out in places like Ukraine and Syria as Western powers move to consolidate their position by toppling regimes deemed problematic for the intended paradigm of U.S. hegemony. States such as Turkey and Saudi Arabia utilize the current international order to forward their interests by working to gain regional economic, military and cultural dominance (Sunni Islam) while acting in concert with their Western overlords.

The West wants Russia to be accepted as a subservient partner in the AngloZionist Empire, while the latter want to fully “sovereignize” Russia and then create a multi-polar international system with the help of China and the other BRICS countries.

If interventions into Syrian and Ukrainian politics were truly about democracy, freedom, and the rule of law, as feigned in the West, would they really be supporting Islamist extremist groups in Syria and neo-nazis in Ukraine?

Make no mistake that the potential for this conflict to spiral rapidly out of control and into a nuclear war type scenario is a clear and present danger. Obama would be wise to call in his Turkish-Saudi attack dogs and make clear that they will have no U.S. support in the event that they engage the Russians in Syria.

Jay Syrmopoulos is a political analyst, free thinker, researcher, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs. Jay's work has been published on Ben Swann's Truth in Media, Truth-Out, Raw Story, MintPress News, as well as many other sites. You can follow him on Twitter @sirmetropolis, on Facebook at Sir Metropolis and now on tsu.