Kurdish Regional Government

Wednesday, November 22, 2006
The KRG has a very nice website that establishes its autonomy pretty clearly. (That ain't an Iraqi flag waving on the front page.) Reading through the site a bit reminded me that the Kurds have had autonomy since the establishment of the no-fly zone in 1991. The Kurds held their first regional elections in 1992 and have successfully transferred power between competing factions several times, the most recent being the transfer from the PUK led government to the current KDP led government in May of this year. While Barzani seems to be the name of choice for Kurdish leaders over the last century although there have been men from other families who have led.

The fact that the Kurds have been policing themselves for fourteen year has certainly proven efficacious in minimizing the number of terrorist incidents in the north. The prompt application of the 7.62 solution to unknown Arabs seems to work wonders.

The KRG Parliament is studying a draft oil revenue act, beating Baghdad to the punch quite handily. It will be interesting to watch the Kurds press implementation of the act while Baghdad dithers. Should the KRG Parliament pass the act and begin signing exploration deals without central government permission it may prove to be the point at which autonomy becomes independence.

Prime Minister Barzani has been very clear about welcoming Americans to establish permant bases in Kurdistan. Should Maliki continue as a totally inept sockpuppet for Sadr we might consider inking a side deal with Barzani - and issue a welcome to the family of fully independent nations at the same time.

7 comments:

Skookumchuk said...

Ya think SOCOM and the Peshmerga might go back a ways?

The question is Turkey and how do we handle them. Maybe we present the Turks with a fait accompli, in return for some sort of "promise" by an independent Kurdistan not to stir up trouble. Not right now, anyway.

chuck said...

Let's not forget the Kurdish civil war between the PUK and KDP that ran 1995-1998. The moral, I think, is that it takes time to work these things out. One thing the Kurds have had is time. And lest we bless all Kurds equally, the KPP is still a collection of Stalinist nutcases, the Kurdish equivalent of the MEK.

If Syria and Iran come apart at some point, I expect their Kurdish regions to pull together with the Iraqi Kurds and an official Kurdish nation will become a possibility. The Turks will not be happy, there could be war. One of the reasons for going into Iraq was to roll the dice, we're in the game now, and it won't be easy to pull out any time soon.

terrye said...

BTW, the summit that was set up for Iraq and Syria and Iran was accepted by President Talibani who is a Kurd and Muslim and an Iraqi.

Rick Ballard said...

Skook,

Couldn't we give the Turks our solemn assurance that we'd never, never, ever, ever let anything bad happen to them? That we would always treat them at least as well as they treated us in the past?

Chuck,

They'll never be trustworthy and loyal but you can't complain about their bravery. They beat Arabs all to pieces (sometimes literally) on that score.

David Thomson said...

"The question is Turkey and how do we handle them."

Turkey mostly wants to save face. The Kurds should tacitly act like an independent entity---but not do so officially! Giving the Turks the proverbial middle finger could prove disastrous.

chuck said...

Turkey mostly wants to save face.

They want to retain the southeastern part of Turkey. About 12 million Kurds, ~20% of the Turkish population, live there and have been involved in a long running rebellion with many killed and villages razed. It goes beyond saving face, although I am not sure what Turkey would really lose if the region seceded.

terrye said...

Chuck:

Yes, but it as an aold fight and if the Turks were willing to give the Kurds any kind of autonomy they would have indicated that by now I would think. This is not just face saving to them, they consider it a real threat.