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(BrianHaw.TV) ~ There is nothing polite most people anywhere have ever found to say about the CIA run Barzani death squads who only mention the word Kurd to try to disguise their only real interest has always been murdering anyone who might stand in the way of their making lots of money out of oil.

There are two very good articles (below) by Gilles Munier explaining the long treacherous Barzani and Co, which go a long way to explaining what the US led coalition are currently up to now, when they mention the word Kurd, when they really mean their ever faithful henchman Barzani.




US Plan for the “Great Middle East”: The Kurdish Pipeline

The neo conservator project of carving a “zone of prosperity” in the Middle East financed by Iraqi oil to benefit essentially the Israelis, has been swept over. The United States may have an alternative solution though as much uncertain. It boils down to toppling the regime of Bashar Al Assad and setting up a Kurdish State in the north of Iraq.

(source: Gilles Munier: The Great Kurdistan Threat)

(source: Gilles Munier: The Great Kurdistan Threat)

By: Gilles Munier – 02/14/2006 – For the Americans, to lay their hands on Iraqi oil is getting more difficult. The hope they had placed on Ahmed Chalabi who had promised marvel to the US oil lobby and the Israelis has vanished. It is rather obvious that they cannot protect the pipeline designed to flow oil from Iraq to Haifa. Furthermore, the Arabs and the Turkmen will not be easily expelled from Kirkuk (1).

In May 2001, the Energy Policy Development Group headed by Dick Cheney demanded that the “energy security” be a prime objective of the foreign and trade policy of the Administration. It thus provided a justification in the name of “vital interests” for the forthcoming aggression against Iraq. Since then, the United States are at war….and they shall stay at war for, according to James Woolsey, director of the CIA under Bill Clinton ” several decades …for oil” (2). To-day, despite its downward oil production, Syria has become a target because it stands in the way of the crossing of Kurdish pipelines which purportedly will turn Haifa into a Mediterranean Rotterdam and because the Syrian leadership is not prepared to recognize Israel.
(READ MORE AT: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article11918.htm)



 “…Damascus, SANA  Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi reiterated that combating terrorism in the region and in Syria in particular cannot be carried out without coordination with the Syrian state and leadership.

“Syria is going ahead with countering terrorism till the end,” regardless of it not being part of the recently formed US-led international coalition to fight terrorism or not being coordinated with in this regard,  al-Zoubi  stressed in an interview with the Syrian TV satellite channel broadcast on Tuesday.

In his comments on the situation in Ayn al-Arab city, on Syria’s northern border with Turkey, which the terrorist organization of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has been trying to seize control of for weeks, the Minister affirmed that the city is part of the Syrian territory and its people are “our people.”

The Syrian state has not hesitated to practice its military, political, social, economic and humanitarian role towards all parts of the Syrian land “from the smallest village to the largest city,” al-Zoubi stressed.

He made it clear that the Syrian state through its armed forces and aircraft has offered military and logistic support and weapons to Ayn al-Arab city, and “it will continue to do so with maximum capability.”

While affirming Syria’s support to Ayn al-Arab, the Information Minister asserted that “not an inch of the Syrian territories will be cut off in favor of no one, neither terrorist gangs or groups, nor states or entities.”

In response to the Turkish President’s statements about establishing buffer zones in Syria and about Ayn al-Arab being a strategic area for him, al-Zoubi reiterated that the city in question is “part of the Syrian land and a Syrian city and not part of the Turkish land, and this should be clear to everybody.”

With regard to claims that terrorist factions are not linked and the international coalition’s refraining to fight terrorist organizations other than ISIS, al-Zoubi said all the organizations, including ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra, are linked and they operate with coordination among them, stressing  that “the pretext that these factions are separated is unconvincing, inconceivable and not realistic.



“For its campaign against Kobane, [the US-led] Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil) has converged en masse for a conventional attack upon a fixed geographic point [to try and provide a phoney pretext for no fly zones etc]

…The only real answer to the war is removal of the Assad regime….

The EU, the regional actors and US can declare, on the basis of longstanding international norms, [utter rubbish] that these [?] acts of aggression – as well as the willing self-defence of the locals – demand and justify a robust military response on behalf of the besieged




“…Since Saturday evening, the ISIL terrorists have been transferring a number of their injured members to Turkey through Tal Kania Araban road,” independent local sources in Syria’s Kurdish region told FNA on Monday.

“The Turkish army lit the sky by the help of flares to facilitate this transfer at night,” they added.

Meantime, other reports said that 124 volunteer forces have managed to cross the Turkish border on Sunday to join the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) forces in the Syrian Kurdish city of Kobani to fight against the ISIL terrorists.

…Asked about the US-led coalition’s airstrikes on ISIL forces, Shami said the bombing campaign which targeted ISIL positions in the Eastern and Southern parts of the city were useless as terrorists’ artilleries and other heavy weapons and equipment and the main transit route of the terrorists, from Tal Abyaz and Jerablus towards Kobani, were not raided at all…

“The documents carried by those terrorists who have been killed show that they are mostly foreigners and come from Chechnya, Turkey, Morocco, Egypt, Belgium and France to Syria and their passports have all been sealed in Turkey,” Issou said.”

(21.10.2014 PRESS TV)

“…A new video has emerged from northern Syria showing the weapons the US says is sending to Kurdish forces end up in the hands of the ISIL terrorists.

The video shows masked insurgents inspecting the military equipment which was airdropped in areas controlled by ISIL near the Syrian border city of Kobani…”



“…Mahmoud Haji Omar, a member of the [Barzani] peshmerga committee in the Kurdistan parliament, confirmed that peshmerga troops were preparing to deploy to Kobani:

“We are planning to send a number of [Barzani] peshmerga forces to go and fight in Kobani against (Isis). We are currently selecting the fighters that will be going to Kobani. Turkey has agreed to give passage as long as the peshmerga fighters bring back the weapons that they take in to Kobani.

“We want the region to be cleared of all threats. We assess the military and medical materials aid provided by our Iraqi Kurdish brothers and airdropped by the United States to all forces defending Kobani in this framework,” he said.

“There are seven or eight groups that are fighting together with the PYD [the Democratic Union party] [in Syria].”



 “…Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has said Iraqi Kurdish security forces, the Peshmerga, have yet to cross into Syria via Turkey to help defend Kobane against ISIL. ‘Talks about their route are continuing. We won’t publicize any details until they are finalized,’ he added…

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu has announced that Iraqi Kurdish security forces, the Peshmerga, have yet to cross into Syria via Turkey to help defend Kobane against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

“Talks about their route are continuing. We won’t publicize any details until they are finalized,” Çavuşoğlu said during a live interview with private broadcaster NTV on Oct. 21, stressing that the Turkish government would not announce the timing of the crossing as it is “a strategic issue.”

Kurdish fighters in the battleground Syrian town of Kobane near the border with Turkey weathered a renewed onslaught by ISIL militants on Oct. 21, while the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the armed wing of Syria’s leading Kurdish movement the Democratic Union Party (PYD), await promised reinforcements.

“We didn’t promise anyone a corridor [to transfer military aid to Kobane],” Çavuşoğlu also said, while noting that the Syrian Kurdish border town can be legitimately defended only by the Free Syrian Army or the Peshmerga, the Iraqi Kurdish security forces.[complete and utter nonsense. the Turkish govt. have no legal authority to lay claim to say anything about Syrian territory]

“Now, the Peshmerga wants to help the PYD through our territory. We consider this request to be a legitimate [rubbish] one. We take our steps wisely. We’ve been distributing humanitarian aid since the beginning and we will continue to do so,” Çavuşoğlu told Hürriyet in a separate statement.

Over the weekend, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan rejected calls for Turkey to arm the PYD, saying “just like the [outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party] PKK … it is a terrorist organisation.”

“We’re against sending arms to the PKK and the PYD. The United States has the same position on the issue. If the PYD doesn’t change its policies, it will not be acceptable,” Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu also added during the NTV interview.

He suggested that the PYD also doesn’t want the Peshmerga to cross into northern Syria because the PYD’s aim is to hold power in Kobane.

He reiterated that “talks were continuing” with the U.S. both on the issue of Kobane and also on the planned “train-and-equip program” for moderate Syrian rebels. “Apparently, [Kurdish groups] have come to terms now … We wouldn’t like Kobane to fall, but we have a principled policy. Only the [US tools] Free Syrian Army wants a democratic, unified Syria. Most of the other groups are involved in terrorist actions,” he added.



“The Iraqi Kurdish regional aministration [Kurdistan Regional Government] has said it was cooperating with Turkey and the United States in order to help Kobane. In fact, we too are helping Peshmerga forces cross into Kobane for support. Our talks on this subject are continuing,” Cavusoglu told a news conference in Ankara without giving further details.

The comments confirmed an earlier Rudaw report from Erbil on Monday that Turkey was giving passage to Peshmerga fighters into Kobane.



[20.10.2014 RUDAW]

“ISTANBUL, Turkey – Syria’s main Kurdish rebel group, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), confirmed Sunday it was fighting alongside other rebel forces against Islamic State (ISIS) in the besieged town of Kobane and other Kurdish areas.

It said it wanted to strengthen this alliance which was essential to defeating the jihadists.

The announcement appeared to be the strongest rapprochement yet between the YPG and the Western- and Arab-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA), who have largely been at odds throughout Syria’s civil war and at times have even clashed with each other. The union could mark a significant milestone in the fight against ISIS which controls large parts of Syria and Iraq.

“The resistance shown by us, the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), and certain factions of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) is a guarantee for defeating ISIS’s terrorism in the region. The success of the revolution is subject to the progression of this relationship between all factions and forces of good in this country,” the YPG said in a written statement.

“We can also confirm that there is coordination between us and the important factions of the FSA in the northern countryside of Aleppo: Afrin, Kobane, and al-Jazira. Currently, there are factions and several battalions of the FSA fighting on our side against the ISIS terrorists,” it said.

There have already been reports of battlefield alliances. While it follows a similar joint statement by the YPG and FSA last month, Sunday’s declaration appeared to go beyond the need to combat ISIS, indicating the YPG was committed to helping the whole country, not just Kurdish areas.

“We as the YPG reaffirm that we will meet all of our responsibilities towards Rojava and Syria in general,” it said, referring to the Kurdish name for the Kurdish region in northern Syria.

“We will work to consolidate the concept of true partnership for the administration of this country and commensurate with the aspirations of the Syrian people with all its ethnic, religious and social classes,” it said.

The YPG and the FSA, a loose group of non-Islamist rebels fighting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad, have had an ambiguous relationship since the start of the war three-and-a-half years ago.

The FSA has accused the YPG of being allied to Assad and fears its intentions are to carve out a separate Kurdish state. For its part, the YPG has been wary to support the mostly Arab FSA over concerns the Kurds will be ignored in any post-Assad government formed by political factions allied to the FSA. The mistrust has led to both sides fighting each other, most recently in 2013.

The move will likely allay the United States, which revealed last week it had held direct talks with the Democratic Union Party (PYD), the political arm of the YPG. The Kurdish fighters said they were helping the U.S.-led coalition identify ISIS targets for air strikes in the largely Kurdish town of Kobane where the YPG has been battling the jihadists for more than a month.

The U.S. military said on Sunday it had carried out 11 strikes with Saudi Arabia and the UAE near Kobane over the weekend, destroying 20 ISIS fighting positions, five vehicles and two buildings held by the militants.

The YPG announcement will also go some way to appease Turkey, which is at odds with the YPG and the PYD and has long called for them to join the main Syrian opposition.

Ankara is opposed to the PYD because of its close links to a Kurdish militant group in Turkey, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been fighting the state for 30 years. Ankara has refused to intervene in Kobane, angering Kurds on both sides of the border. Despite this the PYD’s co-leader, Salih Muslim, has held talks with Turkish officials in Turkey as recently as this month.

Apart from joining the main Syrian opposition, Turkey wants the PYD to distance itself from the PKK and to relinquish any ties it says the group has with the Assad government, which Ankara sees as the main instigator of unrest in Syria and which it wants to see overthrown.

While the PYD does not want Turkey’s military to get involved in Kobane, it wants it to allow the free passage of weapons and fighters across its soil into the beleaguered town, a request Ankara has refused. On Sunday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan repeated that position…”



 DUHOK (DİHA) – The following article “Kantonları hükümet de tanıma” was written by M. Ali Çelebi for Özgür Gündem. It has been translated into English below.

One year after he was banned by the KDP government PYD Co-President Salih Muslim is once again in the KRG. The meetings which began in Duhok between the different parties from Rojava and the KDP and YNK continue. Kurds are meeting to establish a foundation for national unity in response to barbaric organizations like ISIS.

Following the collapse of the Hewler Agreement and the subsequent failure to form committees aimed at working out national, foreign relations, security and social issues, a delegation headed by PYD Co-President Muslim – who was last within the borders of the KRG in October 2013 and is back following the reversal of his ban by the KPD government – continues to attend meetings in Hewler (Erbil) and Duhok. Constituents of the PYD and TEV-DEM, as well as a delegation headed by KDP leader Mesud Barzani, representatives of the YNK, and representatives of the National Congress of Syrian Kurds (ENKS) are attending the meetings. During the meetings the Kurdish parliament [of the KRG] adopted a resolution which included the recognition of the Rojava Cantons and the provision of support [to the cantons]. Following the resistance in Kobanê there is an expectation that this strategic opening will be clinched by [the emergence of] national unity and a common will.

PYD Representative in Hewler Xerib Hiso pointed to the importance of the decision taken by the [KRG’s] parliament as he assessed the meetings and the decision for our newspaper. Hiso said “there was a two day session. In these sessions we met around the subjects of the cantons, autonomous government, and the subject of support. 79 people said yes. These were positive steps. But it should not stop here. If you want to offer support then you would recognize [the canton governments]. If you recognize them then you must offer support. We want more and for them to be clearer. The [KDP] government should also recognize us. If parliament has taken this positive decision then they too should join them in this positive decision.

What ENKS wants

Xerib Hiso also said that the ENKS representatives had caused problems which stemmed from their old attitude [to the cantons], saying “ENKS, TEV-DEM, and the parties which have taken part in the system of democratic autonomy all have delegations here. Some problems and issues have emerged in particular around the old attitude of the ENKS representatives. Because this attitude is the mentality of 1 or 2 years ago. They need to approach [the cantons] with a view to the two and half year process through which Rojava has gone through. The ENKS party bosses also wanted to divide up and share Rojava Kurdistan 50/50 just like two years ago. Just like at Hewler 1 they are not getting in line at Hewler 2. The Rojava resistance has affected the whole of Kurdistan, the region and the international arena. The YPG/YPJ resistance and struggle has established roots in the land. Within the social arena the system of autonomy and the formation of the cantons have developed with this struggle. These are Kurdistan’s gains. They are once again approaching with the old mentlaity. They are saying 50/50. This approach is not ethical. We do not accept their narrow approach. They are saying let it only be ENKS and TEV-DEM on the ground. Ok, well then one needs to ask: there are some parties and they do take part in TEV-DEM. Nor do they take part in ENKS. Where will those in people in charge of these parties participate? Where will these parties go? We as the delegations from the Rojava put forward a suggestion. Let there be a system in which all parties can participate.”

Meeting between Muslim and Barzani

Hiso noted that in the meeting between Muslim and Barzani many issues were discussed – including the general situation in Kurdistan, the widening resistance, the resistance in Kobanê in particular, the pressure ISIS has put on Kurdistan, and the subjects of unification and an alliance as a foundational need. Hiso added that the weapons which had been sent by the Hewler government had not been allowed to reach Kobanê by the AKP government. Hiso explained that the weapons brought to the border “stayed there for a couple of hours and then came back. In rhetoric Turkey is a friend of the government in the South and needed to be of help but the Turkish government did not accept them and the weapons were returned to the South.”

Duhok meetings must not come to nothing

PYD Hewler Representative Hiso stressed that all eyes are on the current meetings, saying “the eyes of the entire Kurdish public are on the meetings taking place in Duhok. Everyone is expecting us to move forward in unity and as allies. We must not go back to Rojava with empty hands. We came here for unity. We came here for an alliance. We came with the spirit of the Kobanê struggle and we are insistent on obtaining certain outcomes. We want that all the parties and organizations in Rojava take part in a body of between 27-31 people. 7-9 people will coordinate the work and will be chosen from within the 31. This coordinating body will oversee political work. The government will oversee work around elections.”



 “…Based on hints from both US and Israel, the primary object of a US-led ‘No-Fly Zone’ would be to disable the Syrian government’s air defense system through a series of airstrikes. After the No-Fly Zone is established, then the push will begin to carve out a NATO-run Buffer Zone, or ‘DMZ’ along the Turkish-Syrian which could help to facilitate additional US ground forces into the region in 2015. […]   It would be naive to think that after the initial month of acquiring ‘ISIS targets’, the Pentagon would not move ahead to coordinate its airstrikes with Kurdish and ‘Moderate Rebels’ on the ground in order to mitigate any influence on the ground from Damascus….”  



 “…Moreover, Hezbollah Secretary General said that each day passes “our belief gets stronger that our fight in Syria was to protect Lebanon… Today, we – the Resistance axis – are the victorious. When enemies’ schemes fail, that means you are victorious, knowing that the battle still has long way before reaching the final victory.”

“We are in front of golden opportunity to break the takfiri scheme,” his eminence expressed.

Sayyed Nasrallah, however, believed that ongoing conflict is neither on Syria, nor on toppling President Bashar Al-Assad, but to re-draw a new map of the region, emphasizing that survival of ISIL serves the US and Turkey interests.

He described the International-Arab coalition against ISIL as “nail trimming operation” and “setting red lines” for this terrorist group in order not to affect the Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Arbil, indicating that raids launched since the beginning of the operation are equal to the raids launched in one single day during July war that the Zionist entity launched on Lebanon in 2006.

Sayyed Nasrallah stated that United States uses ISIL as scarecrow to frighten, blackmail and exhaust the regional countries to impose its hegemony, especially in Syria and Iraq. He voiced beliefs that Turkey would not engage in the international coalition against ISIL, and would only meet the U.S. requirements for real strategic and geographic gains in return.

“It (Turkey) may extend its influence down to Aleppo, and therefore will not provide aid to the Kurds of Kobanî, and will not move any step that might threaten ISIL,” Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah concluded…”






 “..MS. PSAKI: So as you know, we have for some time had conversations through intermediaries with the PYD. We have engaged over the course of just last weekend directly with the PYD.

QUESTION: First time?

MS. PSAKI: Mm-hmm.

QUESTION: So on this question, they are – they would be eligible, the PYD, for the train and equip program? Or is that —

MS. PSAKI: That was not at all what I was conveying.

QUESTION: No – well, will they —

MS. PSAKI: We have just communicated —

QUESTION: I mean, they’re begging for weapons right now.

QUESTION: Well, and they’re the ones that are really in the lead fighting ISIS.

QUESTION: And I want to know if – is that something that you’re willing to entertain, or is that just out because the Turks would oppose it?

MS. PSAKI: I don’t think that we’re at that point yet, Matt. This has just been a brief conversation with them over the course of this weekend. Obviously, any entity would be vetted. There could be entities that could be vetted through. But beyond that, that process has not —

QUESTION: General Allen —

QUESTION: Hold on, hold. So on the direct contact with the PYD, when and where was it, with whom?

MS. PSAKI: I’m not going to get into details of with whom. It was over the weekend and outside of the region.

QUESTION: But General Allen had said and others have said that this train and equip program could start relatively soon because you know – you have a general idea of who you’re vetting and who you want to give these weapons to. So I mean, you said any group could be vetted. Are you specifically looking at these Kurds that are really right now, specifically in Kobani where you seem to be very interested in, are the ones leading the fight against ISIS? Would they be considered – are they currently being considered?

MS. PSAKI: I should have said members of groups can be vetted. But I don’t know if there’s any more you want to say on the vetting.

RADM KIRBY: No. We’re just at the very beginning of this. It would be —

[10.04.2006 GILLES MUNIER]

“Numbering 30 millions, Kurds are distributed over four countries, Turkey, Iran,Iraq and Syria.  In Iraq, Massud Bargain and Jalal Talabani are said to be in a position to declare the independence of Kurdistan. The map of the new State as submitted last July to the “National Assembly” comprises territories over which the Kurds cannot have any claim…but which are oil-soaked. No doubt that such a “Great Kurdistan” if unilaterally founded would generate a string of conflicts which will destabilize the whole of the Middle East. Nobody save the United States and Israel has nothing to gain, least of all, the Kurds. 

The 1920 Treaty of Sevres, art 62, repealed by the Lausanne Treaty in July 1923, made provision for “local self-rule” of territories “where the Kurdish element was dominant”. A map of Kurdistan, which could be to-day labelled as “the Very Large Kurdistan” and was handed over at Sevres by the Kurdish delegation extended from the coastline of the Mediterranean to the Arab Gulf…Something totally unacceptable for the big powers of the days –France, Great Britain- for Turkey, the Arabs and the Armenians who claim lands which the Kurds wished to lay their hands on.  

In Mesopotamia, it incorporated the Willayet of Mossul, the Sindjar close to the Syrian border, the Sulimaniya region, Kirkuk and stopped at Qanaqin, in the north-east of Baghdad on the border with Persia. As an answer to that claim, the British planned to set up a Kurdish kingdom in the north of the Mossul Willayet only. In doing so they intended to undermine the Turks who had their eyes locked on Mossul. The project was abandoned after the creation of Iraq (1) because the north of Iraq had revealed huge oil resources.

Kurdish revolts in Iraq

Ever since all Kurdish revolts in Iraq have erupted in the name of home rule but the question of the administrative borders has scarcely been tackled.

For the pro-British Prime Minister Nouri Said, born by a Kurdish mother, home rule was not the prime goal of the insurgents. In October 1930, he reported the results of talks with them to the High Commissioner in Baghdad : ” First, it was a question of guarantees…then the Kurds showed their discontent at the existing administration,…then they demanded a quasi autonomy and now it comes to secession”(2).

Never during the Ottoman Empire has Iraqi Kurdistan existed as a State in the Western sense of the word. There were Kurdish principalities more or less dependent on the Sultan in Istanbul, but they covered a very small part of Kurdistan. 

The Sheikh Mahmud Berzendji, self-proclaimed “humkudar” (king) of Kurdistanin 1922 ruled over the Sulumanyia region and the Kirkuk members of his council, actually his henchmen- were all…Turkmen. His rebellion was crashed in a heavy-handed manner by the British and he was deported to the south of Iraq.

Another revolt in 1931: Sheikh Ahmed Barzani, – a colourful man who had in mind to go over to Christianity with his tribe- succeeded in gaining control of a territory stretching from the Turkish border to Aqra, in the north of Mossul. The RAF shelled his HQ and he fled to Turkey.

His brother, Mustapha Barzani took over and went to Iran with over a thousand fighters eager to assist the small Republic of Mahabad born on January 22, 1946. Deserted by its Soviet ally, Mahabad fell less than a year later. Its President Qazi  Muhammad was sentenced to death and hanged. Mustapha Barzani took shelter in the Soviet Union. 

Mustapha Barzani  ” Kassem’s Soldier”

Barzani’s return to Baghdad  eleven years later, after the overthrow of the Hashemite monarchy by General Abdel Karim Kassem was a triumph.  Several Kurdish ministers among them Sheikh Mahmud’s son joined the government. Against the commitment that the Kurds “national rights”  within the “Iraqi entity” would be guaranteed alongside with the publishing of Kurdish newspapers, Barzani branded himself ” Kassem’s Soldier” and helped the “Zaim” (the Leader) as Kassem was named to repress in a bloodbath an Arab nationalist revolt led by Colonel Abdel Wahab Chawaf in Mossul. The colonel was given the fatal blow on his hospital bed. Four hundred of his followers – in particular Shammar Beduins – were massacred in a mosque by Kurdish militias and the “People’s Resistance Forces”. 

But Barzani’s support went farther. In May 1959, he lent a hand to the Iraqi army in quashing a revolt of Kurds chiefs in the Rawanduz area. More than 24 000 Kurds fled to Turkey and Iran!

Relationships between Barzani and General Kassem deteriorated after a long stay of Barzani in  Moscow, the Soviets signalling  thus that they did not appreciate the “Zaim” decision to evict the Iraqi Communist Party from power. Once Barzani back in the mountains, the war flared up again. However, the demands that he put forward to Kassem in March 1962 were strangely mild. They dealt with the opening of schools, agricultural and industrial development, and the recognition of the Kurdish language. No question of self-rule or borders.

Self-rule demands

On February 8th, 1963, the Baathists and the Nasserians toppled Kassem and Abdul Salam Aref came to power. On March  4th,1963, Barzani handed over a list of claims with an ultimatum to a delegation from Baghdad at the meeting of Kani Maran (the Snakes spring) in which he made a demand for self-rule for a region composed of the liwas (provinces) of Sulamayia, Kirkuk, Arbil and the districts of the liwas of Mossul and Diyala as well as the share-out of the oil income among Arabs and Kurds. If this was rejected, he threatened to resume the fighting within three days.

As foreseen, Baghdad did not meet the unrealistic demands of Barzani which was what he wanted. General Aref however did concede to the “national rights of the Kurdish people” on the basis of decentralisation. It was a tremendous progress given the then political environment in the Middle East. However, the bidding went up. In April 1963, Jalal Talabani, head of the progressive current within the Democratic Party of Kurdistan, demanded the replacement of Iraq by a bi-national State. For Baghdad, it was a provocation. The Kurds blew up oil installations in Kirkuk !

In November 1963, Aref removed the Baathists from power and Barzani’s claims suddenly became less urgent. The DPK accused him of softening  and Talabani had to run away to Iran. His followers were chased by Obeidollah Barzani. 

In 1964, new turnabout: Mustapha Barzani rejected the return of “liberated zones” under the control of Baghdad. He concluded a secret alliance with the Shah of Iran, the financial and military assistance of which – as well as the United States’ and Israel’- enabled him to control a mountainous territory from the Syrian border to Qabaqin , leaving out the big Kurdish cities. Jalal Talabani sided with Baghdad and took part with his Kurdish units of mercenaries in the battle of Hendrin Mount (2875m) against Idriss Barzani and his 1700 pershmergas. 

Self-rule for the Kurds in the offing

On July 1968, 17, General Abdel Rahman Aref –who took over after the death of his brother in a helicopter crash- is overthrown. The Baath led by General Hassan al Bakr came to power and as a start, decided to support Jalal Talabani who was hunting down the Barzanists for the Baathists. …The fighting was fierce against the background of the latent Iraqo-Iranian conflict until Saddam Hussein then Vice President of the Revolutionary Command Council (RCC) was put in charge of negotiating with the insurgents.

On March 1970, 11 Arabs and Kurds reached a historical agreement whereby self-rule would be granted, within four years, to governorates inhabited mainly by Kurds. The Kurdish language was to become one of the official language along with Arabic in the autonomous region, the Vice President of the Republic of Iraqhad to be a Kurd and the mercenary units of Talabani, be decommissioned. At last, the DPK was allowed to resume its activities and publish his mouthpiece “Al Taakki”.

During the four ensuing years, the administrative borderline and the statute of the autonomous region were heatedly discussed by Saddam Hussein and the DPK. Idriss Barzani, in the name of his father, using a XVIIIth century map demanded the integration to the future autonomous region of the Sindjar –including the Aïn Zaleh oilfield- Kirkuk and Kanaqin. Saddam Hussein could not agree to granting territorial rights to Kurds in the regions where they did not compose the majority of inhabitants, even it had been so in the past (3).

Finally, the selected governorates were: Dohuk, Arbil, Sulimayia.  Kirkukgovernorate with its numerous “multiethnic sectors” that is composed of “several non-Kurdish minorities, such as the Turkmen”- was excluded from the blueprint for an autonomous province. 

The Autonomous Region of Kurdistan

Despite this obvious progress, Mustapha Barzani held his ground as he feared that the autonomy would jeopardize the power of the feudal chiefs which the peasants served like in the Middle Ages. He certainly did not favour the implementation in Kurdistan of the agrarian reform carried out in the rest of the country. As usual, he bid further by reiterating his demand over Kirkuk and the share-out of oil income in relation with the number of people in those regions. Financial autonomy he said is more vital than administrative autonomy. Saddam Hussein refused again saying that a State has to treat all regions equally in terms of development regardless of the number of its inhabitants. For Saddam Hussein, Barzani  spoke  of a confederation no longer of a autonomy. 

The signing of the Iraqi-Soviet friendship Treaty in April 1972 and the nationalisation of the Iraq Petroleum Company( IPC)  brought about a change and gave Barzani an other opportunity to resume the fighting. As soon as May 1972, the CIA covertly financed his activities. Therefore, when on March, 11th1974, self-rule was granted to the Kurds, he dispelled it. He later acknowledged before Paul Balta, journalist with Le Monde, : ” that Israel, the Shah of Iran and the United States had strongly convinced him to refuse the agreement  in the belief that the Kurds would launch a guerrilla warfare to weaken Saddam Hussein whose modernisation plan for Iraq was a serious concern for the United States and their great ally Israel” (4). In an interview with the Washington Post, June 22, 1973, he pledged to serve the US policy in the region and if the US aid was “substantial” “to take control of the Kirkuk oilfields and entrust their exploitation to an US company”. According to the 1975 Pike Report of the CIA, he was prepared to register Kurdistan as the 51the State of the United States!

The DPK split.  Obeidallah Barzani,  “sell out” for his father was tempted by the autonomy experience as negotiated and was therefore made minister of State in April 1974. Several members of the DPK politburo set up a rival party in Baghdad and until April 2003, the question of the Kurdistan borders lie dormant.

The Kurdish insurgency held its ground up to the Algiers Agreement signed by Saddam Hussein and the Shah whereby they secretly agreed to stop supporting their respective opposition groups. Within a short period, the Kurdish guerrilla collapsed. Mustapha Barzani  died of a cancer in the US where he has taken up residence with his son.  

De facto independence

With the outbreak of the First Gulf War (1980-1988) so called Iraq-Iran War, the insurgency was afresh but the repression is horrendous. With the Anfal operation of Ali Hass Al Majidi, a security zone is secured along the borders: villages are destroyed and their population displaced and regrouped. Every encroachment of the Iranian army is met with combat gas by each waring side like at the very controversial battle of Hallabja. All through, the regional government based in Arbil kept on his normal activities. 

After the cease-fire signed by Iran on July 18th, 1988, the lull was short-lived. Iraqi divisions entered Koweit in August 1990, and this led to the Second Gulf War and to the setting up in April 1991 of an illegitimate free-zone north of the 36th parallel. Massoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani were free to do as they pleased for the next 13 years. 

The unacceptable borders of the Iraqi “Great Kurdistan”

To-day, Barzani’s son, is the President of the Autonomous Region and Jala Talabani , the “President of the Republic”. They have for a while kept their squabbling down and have annexed lands outside the Autonomous Region. They do not have to fear the Iraqi army, dismantled by Paul Bremer and they forbid any military force made up of Arabs to enter the region under their grip. Their militias, trained, armed and supported by the Americans and the Israelis are ready to seize by force Kirkuk, the Sindjar and Qanaqin.

The map as submitted to the National Assembly in July 2005 by Mullah Bakhtiyar, member of the PUK (Patriotic Union of Kurdistan) comprises the whole  governorate of Nineveh, that is to say Mossul, Tell Afar (5% of Kurds, 75% of Turkmen), the Sindjar (Yezidi) and a large portion of the Djezire plateau, Kirkuk and Tuz Kurmatu –the whole of the Turkmeneli, Turkmen country- then it cuts across Baqubah, moves around Baghdad, fifteen kms north, then down to the  south-east to Jassan and Badra on the border with Iran. The mountain range of Hamrin serves as a boundary in the north between Arabs and Kurds. This seems to be not enough for some Kurdish fundamentalists who argue that Salah Eddine (Saladin) being born in Tikrit (south of Hamrin) means that the town was Kurdish.

The drawing of Kurdistan based on “historical and geographical facts” according to Bakhtiyar was approved by the Kurdish Parliament. The Kurdish people, he said, may be willing to discuss privileges or ministerial functions, but the borders of Kurdistan are a line not be crossed. (5). The Kurdish leaders might as well consider that all Kurds living in Iraq outside Kurdistan be under the jurisdiction of the Kurdish State and regarded as privileged citizens as requested by Barzani in his counter-proposal on the autonomous region project. 

Jalal Talabani has put forward to the Turkmen an autonomous plan (7)…within the would-be State of Kurdistan but the mistrust is there because lands which would be allotted to them were not mentioned.  In the “Great Kurdistan” Project, Yezidis and Shabaks (8) who are neither Kurds nor Arabs in their opinion are being turned into “Kurds”. Assyrians are labelled Kurds because they speak the language and the Chaldeans are said to be Arabs, for the opposite reason, as if to mean that the religious schism between them bears ethnical roots.

Barzani and Talabani are asking too much. They should be satisfied with their own territory and embark on long-pending social reforms. Otherwise, they can just expect more riots and violence as in Halabja last March where demonstrators destroyed a shrine. 

Who can really believe that Arabs and Turkmen will ratify the policy of fait accompli ? They will not be ripped off their national rights or of their lands. There will be more wars and the American and Israeli ‘friends” may not always be prepared to answer the call of the feudal Kurds.”

                                                                                                    Gilles Munier (10/4/06)

Contact : gilmun@club-internet.fr

Map : Strafor.com (1) Alerte au Kurdistan, by Edouard Sablier – Le Monde, 26/9/61 – (2) Lettre du 18 octobre 1930, source : Foreign Office 371 14 523, Chris Kutschera, Le mouvement national kurde, Flammarion, 1979 – (3) Compte rendu des négociations – Exposé de Saddam Hussein, le 11 mars 1975 – Propos sur les problèmes actuels, Editions Ath-Thawra – Bagdad (sans date) – (4) Le projet politique des Etats-Unis n’est-il pas d’atomiser le Proche-Orient ? Paul Balta interview by Saïd Branine (26/3/03)  


 (5) Kurdish leaders redrawn map with larger Kurdistan.  (6) L’Irak nouveau et le problème kurde, by Aziz El Hadj, Ed. Khayat, 1977 – (7) The New Anatolian (30/1/06) – (8) Iraq’s Shabaks are being opressed by Kurds, by Dr. Hunain Al-Qaddo. 



SOURCES: Brian Haw .TV

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