May 26, 2013

A PEOPLE WHO THINK THEMSELVES A NATION ARE ONE:

The Kurdish momentum in the Middle East (OFRA BENGIO, 05/26/2013, Jerusalem Post)

Writing in the aftermath of the 1990 Gulf war about the Kurds of Iraq, Turkey and Iran, David McDowall was quite pessimistic about the prospects of Kurdish nationalism, saying: "One must doubt whether Kurdish nationalism can ever prevail against three hostile governments willing to apply ruthless methods to contain the challenge." [...]

In the 20th century the Kurdish issue was considered a domestic problem in which the international community and international organizations were reluctant to interfere. However, by the beginning of the 21st century this taboo was broken. In Iraq, for example, many countries are developing relations with the KRG against the will of Baghdad.

With regard to Turkey the solution of the Kurdish domestic issue became part and parcel of the EU's condition for accepting Turkey into its fold. In other words there formed a Gordian knot between Turkey's relations with the EU and the Kurdish domestic issue. In Syria too the PYD, the leading Kurdish party, which controls the autonomous region, had managed to publicize the Kurdish cause in Europe where its leaders are personae grate in many capitals. Interestingly, unlike the PKK, its mentor, the PYD is not considered a terrorist organization either by the EU or the US.

Another important development was that at the turn of the century the international community no longer upheld the notion of the sanctity of borders.

Thus, between 1990 and 2010 the number of states in the world grew from 151 to 192, most of which arose through secession. Thus, it is possible to say that in the 21st century there has been legitimization of new entities and states.

The main trigger for the change was the coming of the Americans to the region in 2003, namely the war on Iraq, and their departure at the end of 2011.

Thanks, W.

Posted by at May 26, 2013 6:32 PM
  

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