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Iraq should have allowed steps to be taken to formally resolve the matter . IMO once the US winds down its presence and if the Kurds lack confidence in the Iraqi government , its institutions and local security forces then they will look to UDI as there best option. The Kurds may feel that even without international recognition and sanctions they may still be better off then the rest of the country.
Should my thinking be correct then Turkey will further be alienated. Just about anybody expect for the right wing kooks who still think the war was a good idea know that Turkey the only secular Islamic democracy in the region should have been a strong ally rather then a country that has been alienated by bad policy making.
Kurdish separatists remain problematic Iran and other countries are within their rights to go after any security threats inside Iraq's borders. If the separatists are not willing to settle just for a interdependent Kurdish State whose borders fall within what is currently Iraq then any chance of International recognition will go out the window.
Iraqi Kurdistan is an autonomous, federally recognized political, ethnic and economic region of Iraq. It borders Iran to the east, Turkey to the north, and Syria to the west and the rest of Iraq to the South. Its capital is the city of Erbil, known in Kurdish as Hewlêr.
In the Iraqi Constitution, it is referred to as Kurdistan Region. The regional government refers to it as Kurdistan-Iraq (or simply Kurdistan region) but avoids using Iraqi Kurdistan. The full name of the local government is "Kurdistan Regional Government" (abbrev: KRG.)
The population is about 8 million. 95% of these are Kurdish Muslims who are Sunnis. There are also significant numbers of Yazidis, Kakeyís, and Christians. Kurds comprise the ethnic majority in the region (about 95%) while the Turkmen, Assyrians, Armenians and Arabs who reside particularly in the western part of the area make up the rest.
The Kurd’s assembly created in 1970 was under the control of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein until the 1991 uprising against his rule following the end of the Persian Gulf War. While the no-fly zone covered Dahuk and Erbil, it left out Sulaymaniyah and Kirkuk.
Following several bloody clashes between Iraqi forces and Kurdish troops, an uneasy and shaky balance of power was reached, and the Iraqi government withdrew its military and other personnel from the region in October 1991. The region thus gained de facto independence, being ruled by the two principal Kurdish parties - the Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) - outside the control of Baghdad. The region has its own flag and national anthem.
After 1996, 13% of the Iraqi oil sales were allocated for Iraqi Kurdistan and this led to a relative prosperity in the region. Saddam established an oil smuggling route through territory controlled by the KDP, with the active involvement of senior Barzani family members.
The Iraqi Kurds may be seen in two ways. The first and the most common way is to view the Kurds as victims, both of the central government in Iraq and of neighboring powers - particularly Turkey. The second opposing position is to see them as an agent provocateur, acting as proxy forces for states opposed to the incumbent Iraqi regime.
Following the removal of Saddam Hussein's administration and the subsequent violence, the three provinces fully under the Kurdistan Regional Government's control were the only three in Iraq to be ranked "secure" by the US military. The relative security and stability of the region has allowed the KRG to sign a number of investment contracts with foreign companies.
KDP and PUK have united to form an alliance with several smaller parties, and the Kurdish alliance has 53 deputies in the new Baghdad (Iraq) parliament, while the Kurdish Islamic Union (KIU) has 5. PUK-leader Jalal Talabani has been elected President of the new Iraqi administration, while KDP leader Massoud Barzani is President of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
Turkey. The KRG itself is reluctant and in fact is seldom referred to as such by Turkey, who are keen to do whatever is possible in order to bring down the ultra-nationalist PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party). The PKK have themselves staged armed attacks within Turkey from base areas within Northern Iraq and there are conflicting ideas about whether or not encouraging strong ties with the KRG will help or hinder Turkey's fight against the PKK.
Kurdistan is divided among seven governorates of which currently three are under the control of the Kurdistan Regional Government. The stability of the Kurdistan region has allowed it to achieve a higher level of development than other regions in Iraq. Two international airports operate flights to Middle Eastern and European destinations.
The government continues to receive a portion of the revenue from Iraq's oil exports, and the government will soon implement a unified foreign investment law. The KRG also has plans to build a media city in Erbil and free trade zones near the borders of Turkey and Iran. The KGR region gets a cut from Iraqi-Turkish trade, plus also rumored subsidies from the United States and Israel.
Originally posted by Rockpuck
If Kurdistan had just two things:
A port. They are land locked.
They have neither, sadly, as the only ones in Iraq to do something constructive since the war began,
I for one hope it's civil war and the Kurds can break away without interference from Iran or Turkey.
they deserve our assistance, but it isn't right for our geopolitical aims.
Since the Kurds are and will remain autonomous they are in a position to declare UDI if they feel the security situation deems it. If the security in Iraq remains relatively stable in the long term then the Kurds best option is to have guaranteed representation in the Iraqi parliament.
As for the answer to your question. Minority's should have representation but not rule. Iraq's literacy rate is high enough that there should be no need for a ruling class if you like.
I am certainly willing to support the creation of an interdependent Kurdistan providing that terrorists aren't given the mantel of leadership.
Look what happened after the International forced upon the wrong leaders in Zimbabwe.
The Kurdistan Regional Government has no way of building up political capital even if they wanted to crack down on the separatists they wouldn't get any support from Turkey who are against an interdependent Kurdistan.
I am certainly willing to support the creation of an interdependent Kurdistan providing that terrorists aren't given the mantel of leadership .
I accept that Turkey and Iran have the right to go after any Kurdish terrorists who are using what is now northern Iraq as a base of operations . A full blown Turkish and Iranian invasion of Kurdistan would certainly be undesirable .
Assuming the Kurdish military and security forces could starve off the disintegration of Iraq I don't know how long Kurdistan could use sanction busting to survive economically.
UDI stands for Unilateral Declaration of Independence.
Turkey does provide a realistic model that Iraq and Afghanistan could aspire to.
As a general observation notice how when Israel and the Palestinian's are not mentioned the hounds stay away. The Kurds deserve a brighter future then they look set to get and too few people care.
I think you would find that the Turks were at least had secular leanings while the Ottoman Empire was the Sick Man of Europe . TE Lawrence noted this in memoirs along with the fact that it was another reason for the various tribes to hate the Turks .
IMO in terms of Pakistan and Afghanistan you haven't grasped the lesson from Rhodesia which is that a less then perfect government can be replaced by something far worse.
Returning to the focus of the topic you have somewhat inadvertently hit upon an issue related to the creation of the state of Israel. How can the Jews be given a homeland and then the US and the UN say no to other people like the Kurds? I know about the associated guilt with the Holocaust and Truman support for the creation of the state of Israel because he wanted the Jewish vote. Never the less my question is still valid.