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For those who feel the war on terrorism
could use a little "Structural Adjustment".

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Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Update: I just saw this article over at the Washington Post which addresses the issue of Kurdish autonomy in northern Iraq.

A quick thought for today -- if the U.S. government really wanted to bring democracy and stability to the Middle East, perhaps they could attack the issue of a Kurdish state. This one ranks up the with the Sudanese civil war and the Greek/Turkish conflict over the island of Cypress as one of the thorniest an hardest-to-resolve conflicts currently underway. We hear a lot about the Palestinians and the Israelis, but I don't mention that as hard to resolve because it could be resolved if it wasn't handled so poorly by Ariel Sharon, Yasser Arafat, and George W. The issue of a Kurdish state and poses difficulties for not only Turkey and Iraq, but a number of other states in the region (such as Syria and Iran). Among other things, it will be difficult for the Kurds in northern Iraq to give up the degree of autonomy they now enjoy under the protection of the international community. This is forcing the U.S. into a near-impossible situation; on the one hand, the U.S. wants Turkish approval to base its forces there. On the other, the U.S. left the Kurds in northern Iraq in a lurch once before and now it's willing to sacrifice them to the Turkish military for basing rights, a position that endangers U.S. support among the Kurds in northern Iraq. The U.S. is playing with fire by pitting these two forces against each other; it doesn't help that it has armed both parties over the years. Not only is a war possible in northern Iraq, but Turkish troops occupying northern Iraq may provoke Kurdish extremists to carry out terrorist attacks against Turkey and possibly U.S. interests in the region.

Andrew 11:49 AM : |


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