Friday, October 19, 2007

Iraq - Kurdish Leader Vows To Fight Turkish Invasion

By Cernig

I guess we can throw the notion that the Iraqi Kurdish political leadership would now act to curb the PKK into the trashcan.
The president of the Kurdish region in northern Iraq has said his people will defend themselves if Turkey attacks Kurdish rebels based in the region.

Massoud Barzani rejected accusations that his government provided cover for Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) fighters.

On Tuesday, the Turkish parliament authorised cross-border raids against the PPK which it blames for attacks on soldiers and civilians in Turkey.

Ankara has said that military action is not imminent.

"We frankly say to all parties: if they attack the region of Kurdistan under whatever pretext, we will be completely ready to defend our democratic experiment and the dignity of our people and the sanctity of our homeland," Mr Barzani said.

He said Iraqi Kurds were not to blame for the actions of the PKK and reiterated a call for Turkey to hold talks with the Kurdish authorities in the regional capital, Irbil.

The government in Ankara has refused to talk directly to the Kurdish regional authority in northern Iraq, insisting all its dealings must go through Baghdad.

Any direct talks with the northern government would amount to a tacit acceptance that the Kurds in Iraq have precisely the kind of autonomy that the PKK is fighting for in Turkey, our correspondent says.
So the Kurds will fight if Turkey goes across the border in force. Will the Iraqis as a whole follow their lead, and will the US then keep its commitment to a NATO ally or to the nation it has a UN mandate to protect?

What a perfect storm. The PKK, via the Kurdish leadership, have managed to yank the chains of the world's only superpower, forcing them to act as a deterrent to anti-terrorist operations by an allied state, because the Bushies were too afraid of messing up the only part of Iraq they could hold up as working right.

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