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For a United and Independent Kurdistan

David Petraeus’ appointment as the new director of the CIA

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How will it affect the Kurds?

David Petraeus hands over command of US forces in Afghanistan to Lt Gen John Allen. He replaces the incoming US defense secretary Leon Panetta to be the new director of the CIA. This is an important event for Kurds all over Kurdistan and needs to be analyzed together with the nomination of Ray Odierno as the Army Chief of Staff of the US.

Petraeus and Odierno are both smybolic names for Turks in their relationship with the US. Odierno, nicknamed “Çuvalcı Paşa”, the Sacking General by Turks for the famous Hood Event in 2003 in the town of Suleymaniya in South Kurdistan (Northern Iraq). David Petraeus was his boss in Mosul at the time.

The Turks had a liaison office in Kurdish town of Suleymaniya and Kurdish Peshmerga reported to the Americans that they were planning to assassinate some Kurdish high ranked officials. Soldiers from Petraeus’s air brigade under the command of Odierno detained Turkish soldiers and while doing put their heads into sacks. Turkish soldiers, the so-called special forces who showed no resistance or whatsoever, were treated in humiliation and photos of them with sacks on their heads were served to the media. 

Here we talk about two very high American officials at key posts in Washington. They both served in Iraq and in Iraqi Kurdistan and they both know the Kurds and the Kurdish issue very well. Although the new Secretary of Defense of the US, Leon E. Panetta is not a known figure by me, I have hopes that these two generals are advantageous for Kurds in their uprisings in any part of Kurdistan.

In my reading of the events, there is no solid fronts here and there. There is always the political game, the ethics of the commanding generals as well as the conflicting interests of the individuals. There is always enough space for people like us, the Kurds, to look for allies in pursuing their causes. In short, no grounds should be left empty for the enemy.

Kurdish lobbyists should develop and maintain good relationships with these two very important American generals. Not necessarily to ask them to favour the Kurds, no such thing will happen, but to fight back the Turkish propaganda.

* * *

The memory of 1974 betrayal of the US orchestrated by Henry Kissinger is still alive for many Kurds. To prevent similar incidents, keeping memories is one thing, but having friends at the right seats is another thing.

Here is what Christopher Hitchens, a monumental friend of Kurds, wrote about US’s betrayal of the Kurds:

Thus, I might have mentioned Kissinger’s recruitment and betrayal of the Iraqi Kurds, who were falsely encouraged by him to take up arms against Saddam Hussein in 1972-75, and who were then abandoned to extermination on their hillsides when Saddam Hussein made a diplomatic deal with the Shah of Iran, and who were deliberately lied to as well as abandoned. The conclusions of the report by Congressman Otis Pike still make shocking reading and reveal on Kissinger’s part a callous indifference to human life and human rights. But they fall into the category of depraved realpolitik and do not seem to have violated any known law.

Christopher Hitchens and the Kurdish flag on his jacket.


Written by M. Husedin

18 July 2011 at 4:05 PM

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