Kurds on a Wire; Voter Mullahfication

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Here's a report on March riots by Kurds in Syria, apparently spurred on by gains made by Kurds in Iraq.

Violent outbursts by Syria's Kurdish minority reinforces concerns that recent political gains by Kurds in Iraq will embolden Kurds in neighboring lands to seek greater recognition. Some analysts see Kurdish ambitions for independence as a regional powder keg. Kurds have been a significant minority in Syria, Iraq, Turkey and Iran since the early 1900s, when Kurdish lands were divided as the Ottoman Empire disintegrated.

And here's a far sketchier report of month-old riots in Iran based on what might be called voter mullahfication.

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  1. In the last week or so there have been reports from Syria that the authorities are clamping down on the Kurdish minority following the riots of last month, with over 1,000 Kurds arrested so far.

    From AP on Monday (4/12/04):

    DAMASCUS, Syria – Syrian authorities have arrested more than 1,000 Kurds in a continuing campaign against the Kurdish minority, a Syrian human rights group claimed Monday.

    It was the second report in less than a week of an alleged clampdown on Kurds here since last month’s clashes in the northeast between Syrian security forces and Kurdish rioters in which 25 people were killed and more than 100 wounded.

    In a statement faxed to foreign news agencies in Damascus, Aktham Naisse, the chairman of the Committees for the Defense of Democratic Liberties and Human Rights in Syria, said “arbitrary daily arrests” were ongoing against Kurdish women and men. More than 1,000 Kurds have been arrested and many of them were tortured, he said.

    The AP article continues with a lengthy description of the background to the arrests, including the riots in March.

    See http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/20040413/ap_on_re_mi_ea/syria_kurds_1

  2. As long as we invaded Iraq anyway (which I did not support), a homeland for the Kurds is something I would have supported. Would have been nice to get *one* thing out of this mess that we could feel good about. Why we cave to Turkish desires concerning the Kurds, I have no idea. They didn’t exactly display stunning loyalty leading up to the invasion, so I don’t think we should return any kind of favor. Let the Kurds have a homeland in Northern Iraq, and watch what effect that has on the region.

  3. What I mean to say is, I think that in the long run it would have a good effect on the region, despite troubles at the moment.

  4. Haven’t we been doing that, in Kurdistan, for the 12 years leading up to the recent war?

    During the twelve years leading up to the recent war, we had a reason for propping them up (hint: rhymes with “Snaddam Hussein”).

    That reason is no longer a factor, which is why you seldom hear US officials even pretending that there will be a Kurdistan one day.

  5. Let the Kurds have a homeland in Northern Iraq, and watch what effect that has on the region.

    At a guess, the effect of uniting Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey in the common cause of carving Kurdistan back up into little bits and pieces.

    I don’t picture us using American troops to prop up a country whose existance we have no reason to care about; my guess is that Kurdistan’s lifespan would be on the order of two to three months.

  6. “I don’t picture us using American troops to prop up a country whose existance we have no reason to care about”

    Haven’t we been doing that, in Kurdistan, for the 12 years leading up to the recent war?

  7. We have not been doing it [propping up Kurdistan] well enough. When Turkey turned against us at the start of this war all bets were off. This foolish respect for sovreignty that allies us with oppressors has to stop. Nations have to understand that they will be sundered if they misbehave – and I specifically include the United States in that.

  8. Voter Mullahfication?
    I like “Revenge of the Kurds”.

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