Law School Discussion

KURDS TO THE RESCUE: as mediators and US ally...

Fidelio

Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2006, 05:34:53 PM »
plus, kurds = turds.

but apparently they have very attractive she-goats.  no kidding!


?

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2006, 06:08:13 PM »
bluecoward all lovey-dovey with one of their goats.

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2006, 10:32:12 PM »
let us not underestimate the KURDS...to do so would be foolish.

assyrian international news agency...

North Iraq -- Like most young Kurds in this northern city, Asad Ali does not speak Arabic. He has heard about the rising wave of sectarian killings down in Baghdad, but it seems a world away from the quiet rhythms of daily life here in Kurdistan.

So when a discussion broke out near an outdoor book market about whether there would be civil war between Shiite and Sunni Arabs in Iraq, Ali, a 24-year-old who wears rimless glasses and blue jeans, did not hesitate to give his opinion.

"It is beautiful that our enemies are killing each other," he said with a grim chuckle.

It is not an unusual view here. Kurdistan may be part of Iraq in the legal sense, but most Kurds view the Arabs, whether Sunni or Shiite, as foreign oppressors. The fact that the Arabs are now fighting among themselves evokes little sympathy.

For many Kurds, the main danger of a civil war is that it might spread northward, threatening the relative stability they have enjoyed since the US invasion in 2003. Although Kurdistan is virtually an ethnic monolith, the major cities on its borders, Kirkuk and Mosul, have substantial Arab populations and are far more violent.

So the prospect of a civil war makes many Kurds yearn all the more fiercely for separate national status. Some even say such a war might help them make their case.

"I think the violence down in Baghdad will lead Kurdistan to independence," said Muhsin Khidir, 30, who was taking a cigarette break near the booksellers. "We don't want that kind of fighting here. If civil war breaks out in Iraq, I'm sure we will have the support of the international community, and we'll just declare ourselves independent."

Older Kurds, who came of age before Kurdistan became an autonomous region in 1991, tend to be more worried about the violence in central Iraq, and more hopeful that their own political leaders can play a mediating role. But they too wonder whether a broader conflict might have accidental benefits.

"I don't like to get my rights in the tragedy of others," said Asos Hardi, 43, a journalist who helped found Hawlati, Kurdistan's main independent newspaper. "But if it will happen and Iraq will become a second Afghanistan, why should we continue with them? It is a logical question."

Kurdistan had its own civil war in the 1990s, when its two main political parties fought for control. Many Kurds do not want to become involved in another war. They are also deeply resentful of Iraqi Arabs, who carried out brutal attacks on Kurdish villages during the reign of former president Saddam Hussein.

Evidence of that animosity can be found almost anywhere. At the outdoor book market -- which sits under a vast mural of Sheik Mahmoud al-Hafeed, the rebel leader who is considered the father of modern Kurdistan -- one of the most popular titles is a paperback called The Bloody History of the Arabs: A Summary. On its cover was a lurid color illustration of a hooded skeleton strangling a beautiful young woman.

But separating from Iraq would be difficult, if not impossible. Apart from any objections the Arabs might raise, Turkey has at least 12 million Kurds within its borders, and has made clear that it would not tolerate an independent Kurdistan. Iran and Syria have Kurdish populations, too, and would probably also object.

New York Times


Bluewarrior, aye somewhat disagree, aye believe you are overestimating the Kurds' political influence in the region.  They also may need mediation themselves. The Kurds have been hampered by continual infighting, along with religious squabbling.  If anything the same bickering that led to the divisions amongst Iraqi Arabs, which the author of the article mentioned has also haunted the Kurds, if not more, and may continue to do so.  The author of the article even conceded (and overlooked) that they were marred with civil war during the 1990s. 

Here is some background, the Kurds are divided into many  factions, which the author of this article obviously appears to be oblivious of, each on one another's throat.  In Turkey for example, when the Kurds came together for a united cause, their main groups, the KDP and PUK, instead of procuring their abysmal situation, started waging battles amongst each other, which lasted for years.

The Kurds are further divided linguistically.  There are scores of dialects that are so distinct from one another it will clearly hamper any thoughts of having them as key stable partners where they themselves can hardly communicate with one another.  For example, the Kurdish language of Kurmanji is so different from the other Kurdish language of Hawrami that it has been noted by linguists that these languages are completly unintelligble to each other. 

There has also been numerous reports of religious infighting amongst the Kurds, the same Shia-Sunni divide that has plagued the Iraqi Arabs has also often troubled the Kurds.  The Kurds even have a handful of "Yazidi" adherants, often incorrectly associated with devil worship, it is an obscure religion that isn't even tied to local religion of Islam. 

And although they have found a tranquil sanctuary in northern Iraq from their Arab rivals as the author of the article stresses, the Kurds as allies are far from being stable. Our intelligence knows this all very well which is why aye feel the Kurds certainly dont carry a big key in all of this.

Nevertheless, the international community must be more watchful in the plight of the Kurds.  The Kurds, although represented fairly well in the current government still need international help.  Unlike the schooling of big Iraqi cities, most Kurdish children don't have access to any form of education.  Kurdish areas hardly have any civil development and the West must not ignore their needs.  Hospitals are all overcrowded and most without even power. 

The Kurds have done their part to stay away from the growing infighting in Iraq and voted in large numbers to further government development.  It is time for the West to be more cognizant of their social conditions and the human rights abuses they have faced. 

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2006, 10:33:25 PM »
have youever been to brooklyn?
www.globalsecurity.org/military/ world/war/kurdistan-maps.htm

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2006, 10:36:20 PM »
plus, kurds = turds.

but apparently they have very attractive she-goats.  no kidding!



??

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #15 on: March 30, 2006, 08:52:18 PM »
US encouraged by Tehran's enemy within
Simon Tisdall
Friday March 31, 2006
The Guardian


Increased repression and unrest affecting Iran's numerous ethnic and religious minorities are providing new opportunities for the US as it steps up efforts to destabilise and if possible bring down the hardline Islamic government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Kurdish sources say persecution of Iran's estimated six million Kurds, who mostly live in western provinces bordering Turkey and Iraq, has intensified since Mr Ahmadinejad came to power. Weeks of turmoil followed his election last July - and is continuing. Ten Iranian Revolutionary Guards were killed in the latest clashes this week in Salmas and Kelares, according to Iranian and Kurdish reports.


Article continues

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Although groups such as the Kurdistan People's Democratic party have renounced violence, the Kurdistan Free Life party, affiliated to the Turkish separatist PKK, has carried on the fight. More than 120 members of the security forces are said to have died in the past year.
"The Kurdish population has long been viewed with suspicion by the Iranian authorities and has experienced decades of official neglect," Amnesty International reported in February.

"The months since Ahmadinejad came to power have seen no improvement. On the contrary, there have been signs ... of a further harshening of repression.

"Despite constitutional guarantees of equality, individuals belonging to minorities, believed to number about half Iran's population, are subject to an array of discriminatory laws and practices, including restrictions on social, cultural, linguistic and religious freedoms which often result in human rights violations."

Ibrahim Dogus of Halkevi, a Kurdish and Turkish community organisation, said Kurdish leaders wanted international support to end human rights abuses. But any regime change in Tehran should "come from the bottom" rather than be imposed from outside, he said.

Ethnically Arab Khuzestan province, in south-west Iran, has witnessed several recent bomb attacks, including a rumoured attempt to assassinate Mr Ahmadinejad in Ahvaz in January. The attacks have been attributed to separatists. But Iranian officials blame Britain, whose troops occupy adjacent areas of south-east Iraq, and its US ally for instigating the violence.

Coincidentally or not, "British intelligence" was also officially accused of colluding with "bandits" in Sistan-Baluchestan this month after 21 government officials were shot dead. Like separatists in Khuzestan, the south-eastern province's large ethnic Baluchi Sunni population has long protested about discrimination by the Persian Shia majority.

Iran's leaders also face stirrings of discontent in the north-east, home to two to three million ethnic Turkmen. According to Muhammad Tahir of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, Turkmen say the Persian language, dress codes and customs are being forced on them. "Sunni Muslims in a theocratic Shia state, they feel disadvantaged for both ethnic and religious reasons."

Government fears about the "enemy within" may have been reflected in a recent move to further pressure Iran's Baha'i community, which is not allowed to practice its faith and has often been subject to persecution at times of national strain. The UN condemned the move as "impermissible and unacceptable interference with the rights of religious minorities". A renewed crackdown on student groups has also been launched.

External pressure from non-Persian and mostly non-Shia minorities is being applied via the exiled Congress of Iranian Nationalities, which issued a manifesto in London last year. The congress demanded a federal Iran, separation of religion and state, and an end to all forms of discrimination.

President George Bush's national security strategy, published this month, again urged Iranians to rise up against their "oppressors". But whether the US can or should try to exploit Iran's ethnic and religious fault-lines is a matter of debate in Washington. Officialdom is split between those who fear triggering an uncontrollable, Iraq-style disintegration; and those, notably in the Pentagon, who think they see a way of dishing the mullahs where snail-paced UN diplomacy and high-risk military threats have so far failed.

Iranian officials say western attempts to divide the Iranian nation, forged in revolution and a bloody war with Saddam Hussein, are bound to fail. They are especially scornful of regional Arab and Iranian diaspora hopes of encouraging change from without. But nerves are jangling all the same.

Today will see the beginning of Noble Prophet, a large-scale Iranian military exercise along the length of the Gulf, the area where any future military attacks might be expected.

Rear-Admiral Morteza Saffari said the wargames would start with the firing of a Shahab-2 medium-range missile. The launch of this formidable weapon, he told an Iranian news agency, was intended as "a message of peace and friendship" to all Iran's neighbours. The admiral's grimly ambiguous greeting conveyed a blunter warning: Keep Out.



Fidelio

Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2006, 04:49:56 AM »
US encouraged by Tehran's enemy within
Simon Tisdall
Friday March 31, 2006
The Guardian


Increased repression and unrest affecting Iran's numerous ethnic and religious minorities are providing new opportunities for the US as it steps up efforts to destabilise and if possible bring down the hardline Islamic government of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Kurdish sources say persecution of Iran's estimated six million Kurds, who mostly live in western provinces bordering Turkey and Iraq, has intensified since Mr Ahmadinejad came to power. Weeks of turmoil followed his election last July - and is continuing. Ten Iranian Revolutionary Guards were killed in the latest clashes this week in Salmas and Kelares, according to Iranian and Kurdish reports.


Article continues

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Although groups such as the Kurdistan People's Democratic party have renounced violence, the Kurdistan Free Life party, affiliated to the Turkish separatist PKK, has carried on the fight. More than 120 members of the security forces are said to have died in the past year.
"The Kurdish population has long been viewed with suspicion by the Iranian authorities and has experienced decades of official neglect," Amnesty International reported in February.

"The months since Ahmadinejad came to power have seen no improvement. On the contrary, there have been signs ... of a further harshening of repression.

"Despite constitutional guarantees of equality, individuals belonging to minorities, believed to number about half Iran's population, are subject to an array of discriminatory laws and practices, including restrictions on social, cultural, linguistic and religious freedoms which often result in human rights violations."

Ibrahim Dogus of Halkevi, a Kurdish and Turkish community organisation, said Kurdish leaders wanted international support to end human rights abuses. But any regime change in Tehran should "come from the bottom" rather than be imposed from outside, he said.

Ethnically Arab Khuzestan province, in south-west Iran, has witnessed several recent bomb attacks, including a rumoured attempt to assassinate Mr Ahmadinejad in Ahvaz in January. The attacks have been attributed to separatists. But Iranian officials blame Britain, whose troops occupy adjacent areas of south-east Iraq, and its US ally for instigating the violence.

Coincidentally or not, "British intelligence" was also officially accused of colluding with "bandits" in Sistan-Baluchestan this month after 21 government officials were shot dead. Like separatists in Khuzestan, the south-eastern province's large ethnic Baluchi Sunni population has long protested about discrimination by the Persian Shia majority.

Iran's leaders also face stirrings of discontent in the north-east, home to two to three million ethnic Turkmen. According to Muhammad Tahir of the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, Turkmen say the Persian language, dress codes and customs are being forced on them. "Sunni Muslims in a theocratic Shia state, they feel disadvantaged for both ethnic and religious reasons."

Government fears about the "enemy within" may have been reflected in a recent move to further pressure Iran's Baha'i community, which is not allowed to practice its faith and has often been subject to persecution at times of national strain. The UN condemned the move as "impermissible and unacceptable interference with the rights of religious minorities". A renewed crackdown on student groups has also been launched.

External pressure from non-Persian and mostly non-Shia minorities is being applied via the exiled Congress of Iranian Nationalities, which issued a manifesto in London last year. The congress demanded a federal Iran, separation of religion and state, and an end to all forms of discrimination.

President George Bush's national security strategy, published this month, again urged Iranians to rise up against their "oppressors". But whether the US can or should try to exploit Iran's ethnic and religious fault-lines is a matter of debate in Washington. Officialdom is split between those who fear triggering an uncontrollable, Iraq-style disintegration; and those, notably in the Pentagon, who think they see a way of dishing the mullahs where snail-paced UN diplomacy and high-risk military threats have so far failed.

Iranian officials say western attempts to divide the Iranian nation, forged in revolution and a bloody war with Saddam Hussein, are bound to fail. They are especially scornful of regional Arab and Iranian diaspora hopes of encouraging change from without. But nerves are jangling all the same.

Today will see the beginning of Noble Prophet, a large-scale Iranian military exercise along the length of the Gulf, the area where any future military attacks might be expected.

Rear-Admiral Morteza Saffari said the wargames would start with the firing of a Shahab-2 medium-range missile. The launch of this formidable weapon, he told an Iranian news agency, was intended as "a message of peace and friendship" to all Iran's neighbours. The admiral's grimly ambiguous greeting conveyed a blunter warning: Keep Out.




This article is flawed.  Turkic people (I.E Seljuk, Qajar, Safavid Empires) have incorporated with Iran for hundreds of years before all of this (and have even ruled Iran freely). The author of this article also fails to mention that other Turkic groups in Iran are also Shia (the Alevi and Azeri groups).  Finally most of the Turkmen living in Iran reside in North-Eastern Iran where they mostly take up occupations in carpeting and herdering, far from being politically influencial as the author appears to make them as. 

As far as the the Kurds go, they hardly have a history of dissenting in Iran, and unlike in Iran, the Kurds have greatly felt alienated in foreign Turkish and Arab areas (Turkey and Iraq). Moreover, the Kurds are an Iranic people.  Kurds do not feel they have a foreign culture imposed on them, because they *ARE* that culture.   The Kurdish language is very close to Farsi and all Kurds celebrate all Iranian holidays, including the pre-Islamic Zoroastrian holiday of Noroz.    Ever noticed why the Iraqi President, Talabani and other Kurdish officials fancies and puts trust to our US Ambassador, Zalmay Khalilzad so much referring him as "my dear brother"?  Our Ambassador to Iraq is Afghan-American and Afghans, like Kurds are an Iranic people.



 



 

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #17 on: April 03, 2006, 09:03:50 PM »
Kurdish cross-border attacks threaten Iran
By James Brandon
The Washington Times
Published April 3, 2006


MOUNT QANDIL, Iraq -- A little-known organization based in the mountains of Iraq's Kurdish north is emerging as a serious threat to the Iranian government, staging cross-border attacks and claiming tens of thousands of supporters among Iran's 4 million Kurds.
     
    The Party for a Free Life in Kurdistan, better known by the local acronym PEJAK or PJAK, claims to have killed 24 Iranian soldiers in three raids against army bases last month, all staged in retaliation for the killing of 10 Iranian Kurds during a peaceful demonstration in the city of Maku.
 
     
    Three more soldiers from Iran's elite Republican Guard were killed last week in a gunbattle near the Iraqi border, Iran's official news agency reported.
     
    But the greater threat to the Tehran regime may come from the group's underground effort to promote a sense of identity among Iranian Kurds, who make up 7 percent of that country's population. PEJAK leaders say the effort is spreading quickly among students, intellectuals and businessmen.
     
    "The Iranian government's plan to create a global Islamic state is destroying our people's culture and values," said Akif Zagros, 28, a graduate in Persian literature who was interviewed in a simple stone hut at the group's headquarters. "So we fight back. But our aim is not just to bring freedom to Kurds, but to liberate all the peoples of Iran."
     
    PEJAK units first began targeting the Iranian military in 2004. After attacking, the militants melt back into a supportive society or cross the Iraqi border to join several thousand guerrillas at the group's leafy main camp a few miles from the Iranian border.
     
    "Because the Iranian government oppresses people and prevents demonstrations, we needed a way to defend ourselves," said Mr. Zagros, one of four men and three women who make up the group's leadership council.
     
    "The Iranian government has provoked the people of Iranian Kurdistan to defend themselves," Mr. Zagros continued. "But at the same time, the government is quite weak in these regions, and so our people can respond if they are attacked."
     
    Unlike most other rebel groups in the Middle East, PEJAK is secular and Western-oriented. When the group's members talk, their Kurdish is peppered with such Western words as "freedom," "human rights" and "ecology."
     
    Iran has denounced it as a terrorist group and accused the United States of funding it. But at PEJAK's camp, there is no obvious evidence of American equipment or money. The only weapons on show are AK-47 assault rifles and grenades, and the funding is clearly limited.
     
    Each recruit has a single pair of khaki fatigues, and even its leaders subsist on simple meals of bread, cheese and fresh vegetables at communal outdoor tables.
     
    The group's leaders say that they have had no contact with the United States, but that they would be willing to work with Europe or America against the Tehran government.
     
    "We demand democratic change in Iran," Mr. Zagros said. "And if the U.S. government wants to help us, we are happy to accept their support.
     
    "The U.S. talks about bringing democracy to the region," he added. "But for 200 years, the Kurds have struggled against dictatorship and oppression and in defense of our human rights. And so far the West has not helped us. Why?"
     
    PEJAK's ideology combines the Kurds' traditionally low-key Islam and pagan-influenced culture with the movement's political opposition to the dogmatic Islamic government in Tehran.
     
    Nearly half the group's members are women, attracted by its promotion of sexual equality. Female volunteers receive the same training as the men, wear the same clothes, and greet visitors with a steady eye and firm handshake.
     
    "Here in our camp, the women learn to be strong so that when they go back to Iran, they can teach women and, in fact, all people about our struggle for democracy and human rights," said Gulistan Dugan, 36, a psychology graduate from the University of Tehran and a member of the leadership council.
     
    "The daughters of our movement take part in all our operations, including military ones."






Fidelio

Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2006, 06:43:05 AM »
Aye don't see the relevancy of this article.  Nevertheless, aye am going to make two assumptions on why this article is even posted and my replies are that:

1) This article doesn't strengthen the notion that the Kurds can be mediators in Iraq, this hardly has anything to do with Iraq's administration.  2) Nor does it strengthen the belief that they can be US allies against Iran, on the contrary this article can even weaken it for the following reasons:

Firstly, the PJAK have close ties and have even fought alongside the PKK, an organization that is on our terrorist list of organizations.  Infact our NATO ally Turkey sees PJAK as a branch of the PKK.  The PKK have a long history of militancy, suicide bombings and has often targeted civilians and tourists in Turkey. 

There isn't a slighest change that we'd ever even think about supporting groups like the PJAK since we'd lose one of our closest allies to the war on terror, Turkey, an ally we cannot currently afford to lose.  I see why the author mentioned that there is no evidence of US support or alliance.

Secondly, our State Department recently condemned the actions of PJAK's sister group the PKK after they killed four people in a bombing in Istanbul.

Finally, this recent shift of PJAK's terror from Turkey to Iran comes as no suprise given negative attention Iran is getting from the west.  Is this desperate opportunitism from the leaders of the PJAK?  Maybe. The Kurds in Iran know this and so do the Iranians.  There are 4 million Kurds in Iran, many who have easily blended with their Iranian hosts better than the Kurds in Turkey.  Also remember that the Kurds also helped the current  Iranian government topple the pro-US Shah regime.  I feel the author ridiculously hypes up PJAK's numbers by saying "tens of thousands members in Iran, with all things considered if a dissenting Kurdish faction was as serious as the author of the article makes it appear, they would have been far more vocal and mobile, like the Kurds in Turkey, inside the Iranian infastructure.    It appears the recent skirmish came from an isolated and remote region in North Western Iran. Refer to my previous post on the relationship between Kurds and Iranians. 

The author's tone in this article is hoplessly optimistic and has cloud nine written all over it.  It may even be an article many advocates of the Iraqi (Iran next?) war would like to read, nevertheless it is ironic that he labels the PJAK as a  "rebel group" when PJAK's sister group, the PKK some 100 miles to the west is an internationally known terrorist organization. 

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Re: KURDS as mediators and US ally...
« Reply #19 on: April 04, 2006, 11:12:49 AM »
Aye don't see the relevancy of this article.  Nevertheless, aye am going to make two assumptions on why this article is even posted and my replies are that:

1) This article doesn't strengthen the notion that the Kurds can be mediators in Iraq, this hardly has anything to do with Iraq's administration.  2) Nor does it strengthen the belief that they can be US allies against Iran, on the contrary this article can even weaken it for the following reasons:

Firstly, the PJAK have close ties and have even fought alongside the PKK, an organization that is on our terrorist list of organizations.  Infact our NATO ally Turkey sees PJAK as a branch of the PKK.  The PKK have a long history of militancy, suicide bombings and has often targeted civilians and tourists in Turkey. 

There isn't a slighest change that we'd ever even think about supporting groups like the PJAK since we'd lose one of our closest allies to the war on terror, Turkey, an ally we cannot currently afford to lose.  I see why the author mentioned that there is no evidence of US support or alliance.

Secondly, our State Department recently condemned the actions of PJAK's sister group the PKK after they killed four people in a bombing in Istanbul.

Finally, this recent shift of PJAK's terror from Turkey to Iran comes as no suprise given negative attention Iran is getting from the west.  Is this desperate opportunitism from the leaders of the PJAK?  Maybe. The Kurds in Iran know this and so do the Iranians.  There are 4 million Kurds in Iran, many who have easily blended with their Iranian hosts better than the Kurds in Turkey.  Also remember that the Kurds also helped the current  Iranian government topple the pro-US Shah regime.  I feel the author ridiculously hypes up PJAK's numbers by saying "tens of thousands members in Iran, with all things considered if a dissenting Kurdish faction was as serious as the author of the article makes it appear, they would have been far more vocal and mobile, like the Kurds in Turkey, inside the Iranian infastructure.    It appears the recent skirmish came from an isolated and remote region in North Western Iran. Refer to my previous post on the relationship between Kurds and Iranians. 

The author's tone in this article is hoplessly optimistic and has cloud nine written all over it.  It may even be an article many advocates of the Iraqi (Iran next?) war would like to read, nevertheless it is ironic that he labels the PJAK as a  "rebel group" when PJAK's sister group, the PKK some 100 miles to the west is an internationally known terrorist organization. 

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