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December 27, 2011

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Which side should the Kurds take? 

E-Kurd Editor

Dr. Michael Rubin, the renowned American DR. among many Kurds, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), a senior lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School and a commentator who regularly writes on Kurdish issues, has published an intriguing piece on Kurdistantribune.com titled “Is Kurdistan ready for a U.S.-Iran war?’ 

Since the subject matter is very realistic, I thought I should jot down a few words in this regard. Here is my personal analysis. 

A war is inevitable between the USA and Iran. Iran will not capitulate to the west pressure, nor can the west sit back any longer and allow a nuclear Iran to so simply come into being to threaten the world peace. Iran’s non-compliance with terms of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) IAEA is indicative of its indifference to the Wes’ts demands. Iran will not give up pursuing its own obvious goals. It has continued to do so even after being imposed so many rounds of harsh economic sanctions. Iran claims its nuclear proliferation activities are for peaceful means. 

Sooner or later, a war can be prognosticated, and whether the Kurds are asked to chip in or not, it will swallow up Iraqi Kurdistan, regardless. When WW1, WW2, Vietnam, or most recently, the Afghan OEF commenced, many regional countries were inadvertently drawn in. In Iraqi war, or OIF, the adjoining countries were involved directly or indirectly by funding and directing the insurgency against anti-coalition forces. 

Neutrality is not a choice as President Bush had quoted back in 2001 that "you're either with us, or against us". Kurds must make up their mind and lay their bets on the table. They could harvest manifold as much, or mislay everything they have so hardly gained. 

Both Iran and the USA have propped up and betrayed the Kurds in the past. Let's page back the history tersely: 

In 1975, when both Iran (Shah Era) and the US were stanch allies waging a joint war against Saddam, they promised the Iraqi Kurds to fulfill their many agreed upon vows, including granting them autonomy. When Saddam forces were overpowered and Kurds were just few miles away from capturing the capital city of Baghdad, Iran and USA reached an agreement with Saddam Husain of Iraq (Algeria Pact-1975), discontinuing their military support to Kurdish resistance movement (according to some accounts, Shah had even threatened to strike the Kurd if they did not unconditionally surrender), culminating in perpetration of mass murders and callous genocides. 

Once again in 1991, The US had signaled the Kurds and Arab Shiite to rise up and revolt against the central government in Baghdad. After stirring up the unrest, the US retracted from its pledges, and dictator Saddam did not dither to once again stamp out tens of thousands of innocent civilians. 

However, in 2003, when dictator Saddam was ultimately ousted by coalition forces, Kurds succeeded to attain the vast majority of their ambitions, apart from for self-rule. Kurdish-American ties have burgeoned to the highest level one can envision. 

As regards Iran: 

During Iraq-Iran war (1980-1988), Iraqi Kurds aligned with Iranian forces versus Saddam Husain. The US was cashing in on by shoeing up both sides. When dictator Saddam launched the chemical attacks (1998) on defenseless civilians in the Kurdish city of Halabja, killing 5000 and incapacitating 10,000 more, most of whom died later, as well, the Islamic republic of Iran rushed to the aid of Kurds. Many victims headed to Iran to receive free of charge medical treatments. Some continue to receive pensions and benefits even though they no longer live in Iran. A large number of displaced Kurds from all over the world, especially neighboring countries, have sought shelter in Iraqi Kurdistan, due to better living conditions, but numerous Iraqi Kurdish immigrants opted to prolong their settlement in Iran rather than returning back to a liberated Kurdistan. 

Kurds have always attempted to remain neutral. They have tried to play the benevolent mediatory role as it can be perceived in Iraq. 

Nevertheless, in today’s world of constant wars, one must declare its position. Should Kurds in Iraq Kurdistan ever decide to ally with any force in any front, their only stake would be on an independent Kurdish state. 

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