reply to post by xpert11
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 _
The Iraqi majority living outside the Kurd’s region are not planning to GIVE away the oil that lies under that region. Not to a distinct minority
they have always dominated. The issue of who gets the money will most likely end in violence. Presently, the more cohesive Kurds could defeat the
discombobulated Iraq Central Government forces. Baghdad. For how long that remains true depends on how much the 20 million Iraqi living OUTSIDE the
KRG region want to work together. And that may be a very long time!
The total area of Iraq is 164,000 square miles. Its border with Iran is 903 miles. 504 miles with Saudi Arabia. 375 miles with Syria. 239 miles with
Turkey. 148 miles with Kuwait and 112 miles with Jordan. Iraq’s population is given as 28,945,000 by CIA est. for 2009. A country of youth, its
median age is 20.4 years. And it is growing, the fertility rate is 3.89 children per woman in child bearing age. GDP per person is said to be $4,000.
Last count showed 14 million cell phones. Military expense is 8.9% of the GDP.
By ethnicity Iraq is populated with 75% Arabs, 20% Kurds and 5% Turkmen Assyrian and others. By religion, the CIA allots 97% to Islam - 62% Shia, 35%
Sunni - and 3% Christian. See Note 1.
Arabic is the official language but Kurdish is the “official” language in the area under their
The people known as Kurds live predominately in the southwest corner of Turkey, the northeast region of Iran, some Kurds are in the
extreme northwest corner of Syria, and in the north and northwest of Iraq amounting to about one-ninth of the land area of the country.
The city of Karkuk is the CRITICAL MASS for the Kurds. Located in the middle of the northern oil fields, the population was once nearly 100% Kurdish
but under Saddam Hussein the Kurds were forcibly removed from Karkuk and supporters of Hussein were installed there. The Kurds want the Saddam
contaminated Iraqi OUT and the Iraqi want the OIL. Karkuk (also spelled Kirkuk) will be the FLASH POINT! The Shia led government in Baghdad
disingenuously has called for a plebiscite to determine whether Karkuk would be added to the KGR or remain in Iraq. The Kurds want only the pre-Saddam
residents to be allowed to vote.
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.
The CIA World Factbook says the Sunni are 35% of Iraq’s nearly 29,000,000 people. That is 10,100,000 Sunni. The CIA also says the region
known as the Kurdish Governed Region - KGR - has 8 million people and 97% are Sunni Muslim. What that means is that OUTSIDE the KGR area the number
of Sunni is about 2 million
. And about 18 million Iraqi are NOT Sunni but are mostly Shia Muslims. So, by deduction, the An bar Province which is
the Sunni dominated area close to Baghdad, cannot have more than 2 million people living there. The population of Baghdad is given at 5.3 million.
Q. Is it a WORSE condition for 18+ million people to be dominated by 2 million people than it is for 18+ million people to be dominated by 10 million?
OK, I admit my point may be opaque, What I’m suggesting is that if you remove the 8 million Kurds from the 10 million Sunni in Iraq, that leaves
only 2 million Sunni (under Saddam) to control the remaining 18 million Shia - exncluding the Kurdistan area. In other words the Kurd Sunni did not
participate with Saddam in the control of the country. So Shia animosity is aimed at just 2 million Sunni who made governance by Saddam possible. Was
that enough Windex to make my point clear?
[edit on 5/13/2009 by donwhite]