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For a United and Independent Kurdistan

Iran’s ongoing attacks on Qandil mountains

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Iran’s army’s ongoing attacks to PJAK fighters based in South Kurdistan’s Qandil mountains has raised many questions for the ones who want to understand the reasons behind. Why now? Why so big? Why so insistently to uproot the guerillas from their bases up in the mountains. And why USA allows this offensive to an area that it is supposed to protect?

My initial approach was that the reason behind this offensive was to push PKK, PJAK’s sister organization active in North Kurdistan, to yet another insurgency in Northern Kurdistan. Diplomacy in its own way was my comment.

Since then I’ve read many comments mainly from Northern Kurds trying to understand the reason behind the attacks. PKK has also published their own analysis as to why they were being targeted all of a sudden when they were not militarily attacking Iran or not taking sides in the conflict between the West and Iran (link1, link2):

KCK Executive Council Chairman Murat Karayilan remarks that Iran intends to invade the center of Qandil and points out that the operation is “an invasion plan under the cooperation of Turkey and Iran”. Kurdish sources record that Iran and Turkey want to exclude Kurds from the new Middle East design by weakening them with this operation.

According to PKK, or better named KCK (Koma Ciwakan Kurdistan), the offensive of Iran targets all Kurds achieved in Southern Kurdistan. They also say that one Kurdish party was unopenly acting with Iran to uproot them from their bases. This undisclosed Kurdish party is PUK of Talabani. According to PKK, KDP of current KRG president Mesud Barzani is equally targeted.

There are also many similar views of individual commentators on this. Most or all of them point out to the Turkish contribution to the Iranian attacks and extending it to US undisclosed support. They refer to KCK’s claim that the US UAVs fly above Qandil. It is also known that US shares this information with the Turks. Thus, the claim is that the Turks share with Iran what has been shared with them. In short, to many commentators and to PKK itself this offensive is orchestrated by the Turks and Iranians together and includes to some extent the US.

There are also reports that three hundred Turkish troops passed to Iran days before the attack started and that bodies of five Turkish soldiers were seen transported from the conflict zone with a refrigerated vehicle.

All these put aside, there is an ‘intelligence report’ published by Debka Files that the Americans assured themselves a military base in ‘Kurdish Republic’ after the offensive started.

* * *

Very strange attack indeed. The PJAK claim is that about 260 Iranian soldiers have been killed together with some high ranked generals. They say their casualty is eight. A periodical in Iran known to be close to Ayatollah Ali Khamaney has also criticized the performance of the Iranian army (link in Turkish) mentioning the high casualties Iranian army suffers.

Rodi Baz who published his article in (link in Turkish) says the US tests the Kurdish guerillas if they could survive in the region under such an offensive, if they could be considered a player and / or a partner in the future. This belief itself is a hope for many Kurds not basing on any data. Instead the US recently recognized PJAK a terrorist organization.

Nothing in the Middle East politics is as they are seen at first. One has to analyze events with their secondary and tertiary effects in both middle and long-term. For the moment, Kurdish guerillas seem to be defending themselves well in a battle against the highly educated Iranian army. Turkish army suffered a similar defeat few years ago which rocked the morale of the Northern Kurds. If the Iranians lose this battle and retreat it will certainly have a similar effect for the Eastern Kurds.

It will also indirectly affect the self-trust of Kurdistan Regional Government, and the Kurds in Syria. If both Turkey and Iran try and fail invading parts of South Kurdistan, it will after all mean that the South is defendable against the two major and historicak Kurdish enemy states; Turkey and the Iran. It will also mean that both PKK and PJAK could be more active in parts of Kurdistan they fight for.

Well, if the Turks and Persians could be kept busy with their own Kurdish issues, that would also automatically give space for the Southwestern Kurds, Kurds in Syria. Currently, they are on top agenda of both Turks and the Persian Iranians.

Here is a small documentary about PJAK at Qandil mountains:



Written by M. Husedin

30 July 2011 at 4:11 AM

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