Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
September 28, 2017

By The Grace Of Israel - The Barzani Clan And Kurdish "Independence"

The Kurdish region in Iraq held a "referendum" about splitting off from Iraq to form an independent state. The referendum was highly irregular and the outcome was assured. That such a referendum was held now had more to do with the beleaguered situation of the illegitimate regional president Barzani than with a genuine opportunity to achieve independence. The referendum was non-binding. It is now onto Barzani to declare independence or to set the issue aside in exchange for, essentially, more money.

We first wrote about the Kurdish problem and Kurdish ambitions in Iraqi back in December 2005(!). The problems of an independent Kurdish region we then pointed out are still the same:

A landlocked Kurdish state of some kind could produce a lot of oil, but how would this oil reach the markets, especially Israel? The neighbors Turkey, Iran and Syria all have Kurdish minorities and have no reason to help a Kurdish state to enrich itself and see that money funneled to their unruly minorities. After [Kurdish] grabbing [of] Kirkuk, the Arab rest of Iraq will also not support pipelines for then Kurdish oil.

Arabs, Turks, and Persians see the Kurds as a recalcitrant nomadic mountain tribe and stooge of Israeli interests.

In the mid 1960s and 70s Israel cooperated with Iran, then a U.S. ally under the Shah, to fight against its Arab enemies - Iraq, Syria and Egypt. As part of the cooperation the Mossad sent Lt. Colonel Tzuri Sagi to develop plans for and build up a Kurdish army to fight Iraqi troops in northern Iraq. Tzuri Sagi was also responsible for the Israeli assassination attempts against Saddam Hussein. His Kurdish cooperation partner was the leader of the Barzani clan, Mullah Mustafa Barzani. The Kurdish army the Israelis created is now known as Peshmerga. The son of Mullah Mustafa Barzani, Masoud Barzani, is now the illegitimate president of the Kurdish region of Iraq.


Lt. Colonel Sagi with Mustafa Barazani. Photo reproduction: Yossi Zeliger - source - bigger


Sagi with Kurdish commanders - bigger


Barazani with then-head of the Mossad, Meir Amit - bigger

The Barzani's are part of a major Kurdish tribe and a leading clan in the Kurdish region of Iraq. (The other major clan are the Talabani, currently with much less power.) In 2005 Masoud Barzani, the son of Mullah Mustafa Barzani, was elected President of the Kurdish region in Iraq. His eight year term ended in 2013. The regional parliament extended his presidency by two years. But since 2015 he has ruled without any legal basis. He prevented the parliament from convening and formally ousting him. Masoud Barzani's son Mazrour Barzani is chancellor of the region's security council. He controls all military and civilian intelligence. Nechirvan Barzani, a nephew of Masoud Barzani, is prime minister of the Kurdish region.

U.S. oil interests helped to build the Barzani's power. The Kurds pumped and sold oil without the consent of Baghdad. Oil is exported through Turkish pipelines and sold mostly to Israel. The family of the Turkish president Erdogan is intimately involved in the business. But despite billions of income from (illegal) oil sales the Kurdish region is heavily indebted. Corruption rules in Kurdistan and the regional government had to rob local banks to find fresh money. That still wasn't enough to pay salaries. The Barzani family mafia has robbed the region blind. To keep going, the local government needs to annex more riches and widen its business base.

The Barzani family has deep religious-historic ties with a Sunni spiritual order of Sufis, the Naqshbandi. The Army of the Men of the Naqshbandi Order was one of the Sunni-Baathist resistance group of the U.S. occupation of Iraq. In 2014 it helped (or didn't help?) the Islamic State in the takeover of Mosul before being shunned and defeated by it.

The Iraqi Kurds, under Masoud Barzani, were complicit in the mid 2014 Islamic State takeover of Mosul and the Sinjar region inhabited by Kurdish speaking Yezidis. They saw it as an opportunity to take more oil and declare their own independence from Baghdad. Only after the Islamic State marched towards the Kurdish "capital" Erbil, where U.S. and Israeli intelligence as well as western oil companies have their regional headquarters, did the Barzani Kurds start to oppose the Islamic State.

They then used the fight against the Islamic State to widen the area they controlled by 40%. Minorities like the Yezidi and Assyrians, which were driven away from their homes by the Islamic State, are now denied to return to their areas by Kurdish occupiers. As NYT correspondent Rukmini Callimachi reports from the ground:

A common refrain I hear is that the Iraqi army ran when ISIS overran Mosul, whereas the Kurds stood their ground. Sadly that's not true. One of the areas that was under the control of Kurdish troops was Mt Sinjar, home to a large share of the 500,000 Yazidis living in Iraq. According to the dozens of interviews I've done with Yazidi survivors of ISIS' ensuing genocide, Kurdish troops cut and ran when ISIS came. Adding insult to injury, say community leaders, Kurdish troops disarmed Yazidis. And did not warn them of ISIS' advance. The result: Thousands of Yazidi women were kidnapped by ISIS and systematically raped. Many I spoke to partially blamed Kurdish troops for their fate.

Callimachi further reports that Kurdish troops now prevent Yezidis from returning to their homes. Barzani has unilaterally annexed their land and unilaterally declared it to be part of the Kurdish region. The Kurds also occupy land and villages, already mentioned in the bible, that belong to Assyrian Christians.

Another hotspot is Kirkuk. The oil rich city is an original Turkman and Arab areas. The Kurds snatched it in 2014 while the Islamic State marched onto Baghdad. The  move on Kirkuk was, allegedly, coordinated with the Islamic State. They now want to annex it. The Iraqi state is naturally vehemently against this and is now sending its army. The Turkish government, which sees itself as defender of all Turkmen, also threatens to intervene.

After the Kurdish independence referendum the Iraqi government declared a partial blockade of their region. Iraq is a sovereign state, the Kurdish region has no independent legal status. This gives Baghdad many ways to strangle Kurdish ambitions. Starting Friday all international (civil) flights to Erbil are by order of Baghdad prohibited. A land blockade and stoppage of all trade and monetary transfers are likely to follow.

Syria, Iran and Turkey have all spoken out against Kurdish independence and threatened retribution. Officially the U.S. is also against an independent Kurdish state. Israel was the only state that supported the referendum. That sympathy (or politically convenience) runs both ways: In Kurdistan's Erbil, the Polling Station Head Shouted Out: 'We Are the Second Israel!'


Referendum rally in Erbil

Chuck Schumer, Democratic Senate leader and a reliable Zionist tool, called on the Trump administration to recognizing an independent Kurdistan. Trump can not do so because it would put the U.S. in opposition to its "allies" in the Turkish and the Iraqi government. But the official position is different from what the U.S. does on the ground. U.S. arms still flow to Kurdish forces in Iraq and Syria.

Likewise Turkey is officially very concerned about the independence move of Kurdish Iraq but it also has commercial interests in it. Long term it fears the independence movements in its own large Kurdish population and sees the referendum in Iraq as a U.S. move against Turkish security interests:

[Turks] believe the referendum is actually part of Washington’s supposed long-standing desire to establish “a second Israel” in the region. Israel’s support for the KRG referendum has fed into this perception.

According to the Iraqi prime minister Turkey agreed to isolate the Kurdish region. But Turkish companies, and Erdogan's immediate family, have commercial interest in oil from the Kurdish region. Turkey exports some $8 billion per year in food and consumer goods to the Kurdish region. While Ankara is anxious that its own Kurdish population will follow the Iraqi Kurdish example, near term greed may well prevail over long term national interests.

Without Turkish agreement an "independent" Kurdish region in Iraq can not survive. Such independence  would totally depend on Ankara's whims.

Should Masoud Barzani gain enough external support and prevail with his independence gimmick, the situation in Syria would also change. The Kurds in Syria are currently led by the PKK/YPG, a political cult and militia which follows Abdullah Öcalan's crude philosophies. Politically they are opposed to Barzani but they have similar interests and attitudes. Though only 8% of the population, they have now occupied some 20% of Syria's land and control 40% of its oil reserves. Continued U.S. support for Syrian Kurds and the example in Iraqi could incited them to split from Syria. Damascus would never agree to that.

Kurdish independence, as Barzanistan in Iraq and/or as anarcho-marxists Öcalan cult in Syria, would be the start of another decade of war - either between the Kurdish entities and the nations around them, or within the ever disunited Kurdish tribes themselves.

Posted by b on September 28, 2017 at 14:22 UTC | Permalink

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@97

I see...so you are a closet Russophobe...

And still without a point...

just to recap here...you jumped in after I refuted nobody's notion that Russia could be compared in their historical disregard for civilian victims...

And now you come back with the first Chechen War...and from wikipedia no less...I guess it's news to you that the Chechen insurgency was a US project to begin with...?

http://russia-insider.com/en/society/what-if-putin-telling-truth/ri6952

As I said earlier...and it bears repeating here...no entity, empire or otherwise, in recorded history has compiled a record of brutality that could compare to that of the US...

Not even the Third Reich...and that's saying something

Just in the last 70 years the numbers of innocent victims are in the many millions...

The nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki...20 percent of North Korea's population and pretty much every standing building wiped out from 1950 to 1953, according to none other than US SAC chief Curtis LeMay...

How many millions in Vietnam...?...How many in Iraq...?

And going back in time we have Teddy Roosevelt's war of extermination against the Philippine people...

And before that the extermination of Native Americans on the Western plains, after the US purchased that land from the French...

All of these crimes with a demonic racist twist...

And today we still have the US and its puppet Jihadist army responsible for half a million deaths in Syria...

Even on US streets 1,000 civilian are executed extrajudicially by law enforcement each year...

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/ng-interactive/2015/jun/01/the-counted-police-killings-us-database

Not to mention the world's highest prison population...nearly 3 million...more than China which is five times as big...

You don't have a leg to stand on if you are going to argue that Russia is in some way comparable to that rap sheet...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Sep 30 2017 0:11 utc | 101

@ flankerbandit who left out all of South America and many other deadly empire R2P incursions...but otherwise right on the money.

And while we are talking about money, isn't the control of money the power behind all past/present empires?

I posit that the US is the latest tool of the real power behind empire, those that own/control the tools of global private finance.

I am for not going after the current controllers of the levers but want to eliminate private finance globally. Having control of tools finance be in private hands instead of public ones is a societal travesty that is taking us to extinction with its fealty to the God of Mammon.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Sep 30 2017 1:28 utc | 102

Never a truer word has been spoken Psychohistorian...

The evil of usury has been known from earliest civilization...

'The most hated sort, and with the greatest reason, is usury, which makes a gain out of money itself, and not from the natural object of it. For money was intended to be used in exchange, but not to increase at interest. And this term interest, which means the birth of money from money, is applied to the breeding of money because the offspring resembles the parent. Wherefore of all modes of getting wealth this is the most unnatural...'

Aristotle

Today the enslavement of people through debt usury and the system of allowing money to be created only as debt...and only by private banks is pretty much universal...Alas this is true even in Russia...

The countries which resisted this enslavement, Libya, Yugoslavia, North Korea etc...have been systematically targeted for destruction...

This is the root of all human suffering...and the seat of this evil is Wall Street [with franchise City of London and others]

Until we get rid of the money changers nothing is going to change...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Sep 30 2017 2:33 utc | 103

@ likklemore/98,

The problem is that we've talked from both sides of our mouths in the middle east for so very long now that nobody in their right mind would believe us. And they're right to suspect that we tend do the opposite of what we say in the mideast (other regions too).

Posted by: Taxi | Sep 30 2017 4:44 utc | 104

101

No, this analysis - Russia an imperialist power - was shared by Lenin. He should have known.

Why the US does not like Putin - he saved from the Russian empire and zone of influence what he could. Making Russia a "competitor" - again.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 30 2017 9:10 utc | 105

103

Take Yugoslavia from your list. Yugoslav economy somehow functioned because lots of people worked abroad and sent money home and because there was US investment.

Take Libya from your list. Gaddafi invested oil money in London, in Vienna, in Paris and in the US. With the result that he was robbed.

Take North Korea from your list. They exile their workers to send money home and survive on Chinese investment.

Posted by: somebody | Sep 30 2017 9:27 utc | 106

Somehow this got posted on the wrong thread...

100 years later the Kurds are again genociding neighboring peoples. In 1915 it was the Kurds, acting on behalf of the Dönmeh who committed the majority of the atrocities against the Armenians, and after their ethnic cleansing and genocide, it was the Kurds again who stole vast amounts of Armenian property. 100 years later the exact same thing is happening to the Yezidi and Assyrians, Quelle Surpise.

And once again, they are apparently unwittingly doing it on behalf of Rothchild oil interests. Back then, it was to protect Rothchild's interest in Baku and the Caspian where Armenians were the biggest threat to the cabal. Now it is the Iraqi oil in land occupied by Kurds that is shipped to Rothchild interests in Israel. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Also, the interim between Kurdish committed genocides, declaring the Armenian genocide a genocide has been declared to be tantamount to holocaust denial, by those same eternal "victims".

1860: Jewish Hungarian Zionist named Arminius Vambery becomes an advisor to the Sultan Abdül Mecit while secretly working as an agent for Lord Palmerston of the British Foreign Office. Vambery tries to broker a deal between the Zionist leader Theodore Herzl and Sultan Abdul Mecit over the creation of Israel but fails.

1891: Out of the Donmeh a Zionist political group forms called The Committee of Union and Progress, later called The Young Turks. The group is headed by a Freemason Jew by the name of Emmanuel Carraso who organizes the secret Committee of Union and Progress in Geneva with the help of the Rothschilds.

1895-1896: Sephardic Jews of Salonika together with the Turks massacre Armenian Christians in Istanbul.

1902 & 1907: Two Congresses of The Young Turks meet in Paris to plan, prepare, and effect the penetration the Sultan’s army leading to the military coup of 1908.

1908: The Jewish Young Turks revolt and force the Sultan Abdul Hamid II into submission.

1909: The Jewish Young Turks rape, torture, and slaughter over 100,000 Armenians in the city of Adana, also known as Cilicia.

1914: The Jews of The Young Turks create unrest, turmoil, and bolster the paid Serbian assassin, Gavrilo Princip, which leads to World War I.

1915: The Armenian Holocaust engineered by the ruling Jews of The Young Turks, leaves 1.5 million Armenian Christians starved, tortured, and murdered.

Posted by: Papa Smurf | Sep 30 2017 10:18 utc | 107

The Kurds of Iraq have just voted 93% om favor of independence. As punishment for expressing their views in this way, the world community, led by the democracies, has now put the Kurds into nearly complete political and economic isolation. This is how we reward the exercise of democracy.

In over 20 years, four US presidents have not been able to bring pressure like this to bear upon the Iranians and North Koreans, both of which have threatened to turn the world into a nuclear hell. It shows that the nations of the earth can work together if they want to; and that what they want is to squelch democracy and get us all blown up.

Only Israel has stood with the Kurds.

Posted by: Michael S | Sep 30 2017 12:17 utc | 108

@ 107,

Simply put, neither genocidal israel nor genocidal kurdistan have the right to exist as nations. On someone else' land? No sireebob.

Israel is an Apartheid state that shits on democracy every minute of every day. And you know it. So STFU with your sanctimonious moral bullshit highhorse. Your plain hubris and hypocrisy is despicable.

Posted by: Taxi | Sep 30 2017 13:23 utc | 109

The Kurds are far from being on the side of the angels, despite what our masters would have us believe
https://www.academia.edu/34684148/Erasing_Assyrians_How_the_KRG_Abuses_Human_Rights_Undermines_Democracy_and_Conquers_Minority_Homelands

Posted by: NeoGrouchist | Sep 30 2017 13:30 utc | 110

The Kurds are far from being on the side of the angels, despite what our masters would have us believe
https://www.academia.edu/34684148/Erasing_Assyrians_How_the_KRG_Abuses_Human_Rights_Undermines_Democracy_and_Conquers_Minority_Homelands

Posted by: NeoGrouchist | Sep 30 2017 13:30 utc | 111

@107 michael s..you really believe your own bullshit??

Posted by: james | Sep 30 2017 14:38 utc | 112

@105

You have no idea about any of those countries...which I wager you have never even stepped foot in...

Your fake history is based on MSM and neocon propaganda...

I worked in Europe for five years and flew into and out of Yugoslavia regularly...it was one of the best countries in Europe...a true gem...nobody I met ever said anything about getting 'help' from relatives working abroad...this may have been true in a few individual cases, but to say that the country lived off that is preposterous...

Libya's investments in Europe were a drop int the bucket compared to what Qaddafi was investing domestically and in the African Investment Bank he created...

North Korea's living standard is actually much higher than it is portrayed in the lying media, VOA propaganda and neocon 'think' tanks...

http://theduran.com/truth-north-korea-booming/

Even a Reuters reporter who went to Pyongyang had to admit this...although still spouting pseudo-facts about the rest of the country being 'impoverished'...despite never having gone there...

Your comments are deserving of ridicule for their complete lack of objective information...don't bother replying...you have said nothing of substance as long as I have been seeing your comments here...well before I started posting myself...

You have nothing of value to bring to this conversation and everybody here knows it...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Sep 30 2017 15:04 utc | 114

And here is yet more about why the West hates NK...

http://www.voltairenet.org/article190705.html

Posted by: flankerbandit | Sep 30 2017 15:07 utc | 116

“We don’t have rule of law — we have a monarchy,” said Rabbon Marof, a member of the Kurdish Parliament and a leader of the “No for Now” movement that opposed the vote.

The region’s president, Massoud Barzani, remains in power two years after his term expired.

that is the basis for a democracy? lol.... hey - and don't forget to steal the kirkuk oil fields before you call it too!

read beware - nyt article..

Posted by: james | Sep 30 2017 15:09 utc | 117

b, I am saddened by your take on the Kurds.
Is Barzanistan corrupt ? Of course, this is the Middle East. But a few references show that it is only a limited copy of the Baghdad model.
And when a group like the PYD rejects this behavior, you call them "anarcho-marxists".
Come on, I was expecting better from you.

Posted by: DemiJohn | Sep 30 2017 23:53 utc | 118

@118

'Is Barzanistan corrupt ? Of course, this is the Middle East...'

Talk about condescending...

And just how pray tell did the Middle East get to this state of affairs...?

Through the good offices of European then American colonialists...and now their neoliberal and neocon offspring who pretend that history does not exist...

It's all just one big sound bite right...no context required...

Unbelievable...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Oct 1 2017 1:20 utc | 119

Its generally not a bad idea to separate ordinary people from the actions of their government - well right up until the point where they allow the specious nonsense much beloved by arsehole pols the world over to persuade em to butcher other ordinary people. I've suffered enough attack by ad hom over the years when I seek to explain that I find most of the kurds I have met to be good types that generally put friends and loyalty ahead of dickhead pol's pronouncements so I don't wanna dwell on that, but I do want to make the point that prior to there being any indication that DC's dickhead pols announced they were filthy commies in need of execution, both Fidel Castro and Ho Chi Minh (and maybe even Mao come to think of it) tried to persuade amerika to support their movements - that they wanted close ally and trading relationships with amerika, but they were immediately knocked back because the combination of corrupt corporate lobbyists fronting for the likes of Bacardi and prevailing media bulldust made it a lot less hassle to knock back Cuba, Vietnam and maybe China, than to get them onboard. It was only after that those nations were left with little choice other than to trade and ally with the USSR.
Yeah yeah amerika and post revolution Cuba or post French occupation Vietnam had very different economic and social policies than amerika, but so did amerika and say, the agrarian socialist government of Aotearoa yet they didn't harass or harangue each other. The only real difference between Castro's post revolutionary Cuba and 1950's-60's Aotearoa was that Aotearoa was led by english speaking WASPs.

I make this point because blind Freddie can see that once the alleged 'isis threat' is squashed, amerika is gonna drop Iraqi kurd's like they are a chunk of fly encrusted dogshit. Turkey means much more to the DC arseholes than any configuration of a conglomeration of Kurds ever could, so unless someone in Iraq, Iran or Syria thinks outside the square and puts forward a deal that keeps the Kurd region of Iraq viable, the Barzanis will hop into bed with the zionists - not because they want to - in fact I betcha most kurds loathe that notion, but because they see it as the only way to survive.
Even Barzani that corrupt old prick, who is flat out avoiding an election that he would likely lose would back away from a sovereign 'kurdistan' if there was a way to keep Iraq's central government from traducing other political/cultural points of view.
Iraniansleadership is pretty pragmatic and their main objection to Iraqi kurdistan is largely because they don't need problems in their own nation, so the right deal which ensured that wouldn't happen would suit them too.
As it would Syria who, once amerika/isis has been done over, will be concentrating their minds to how to get the Turks the fuck out.

So instead of sledging kurds all the time the smart move for both Syria & Iraq, is to get em inside the tent pissing out.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Oct 1 2017 2:47 utc | 120

good post debs.. thanks...

Posted by: james | Oct 1 2017 3:12 utc | 121

"In 1915 it was the Kurds, acting on behalf of the Dönmeh who committed the majority of the atrocities against the Armenians,"
So you read the hysterics inThe Duran recently.
Seems.like Erdogan can do no wrong since his 11bn Boeing contract
Next it'll.be Feto terrorists that supported, treated and armed ISIS - Turkey the vixtim of salacious lies as always.
Hahahahhaaaa

As for the article it started to read like the NY Times, and then even quoted the tweet! At least b, you've tried to distingyish between different Kurdish groups because their conflation is dekiberate and part of the new anti-Kurd narrative.

Still can not fathom why there is so little, if any, mention of Russia in analyses of 'Kurdistan'. Is RFs move recently in Efrin really so insignificant? It stopped Erdogan in his tracks again though! Is the recent Kurdistan Rosneft deal really so insignificant? Coupled with refining in Germany it cuts not only into Turkey's immediate oil revenue but also into its expansion as energy central.me.

Tukey is of course petrified of what is happenong with Kurdish developments across the ME as it should be because the days of "oppress and shut them up" are dead and gone.

There's a quote something along the lines of he who does bot allow peacful resolution to political problems makes warfare inevitable ... Erdogan is surely hoping to leg it before the inveitable happens.

Posted by: AtaBrit | Oct 1 2017 14:23 utc | 122

Just for the record...

'somebody' @ 103 said...

'...Yugoslav economy somehow functioned because lots of people worked abroad and sent money home...'

And linked to a wikipedia article which I have now edited...

The wiki article had a single sentence that Yugoslav 'companies carried out construction of numerous major infrastructural and industrial projects in Africa, Europe and Asia...'

To which some wise-ass added 'citation needed'...

Well I rewrote that entry and added citations from The New York Times and none other than the Open Society [Soros] archives from a 1970 report by Radio Free Europe...

Well guess what 'somebody'...the NYT article [linked above] from 1983...'How a Yugoslav Company Built an International Market'...tells of how the Yugoslav engineering and construction firm Energoprojekt was ranked the 16'th largest in the world by 1981...

The archive link from the RFE report goes back to 1970 and reports on how this and other Yugoslav companies were engaged in large contracts all over the ME, Africa and Europe, including building facilities for the 1972 Munich Olympics...

Why did I go to all this trouble...?

Because as I said I know the country well...a good friend, with whom I am still in touch is a structural engineer who worked on that big Kuwaiti housing project carried out by Energoprojekt as mentioned in the NYT...he worked there for seven years and made a very good buck doing it...which he later leveraged into an agricultural enterprise now worth many millions...

That is in fact how those 'remittances from abroad' mostly worked...they came from Yugoslav companies doing work abroad and employing Yugoslav professional and skilled labor at good wages...not guest workers like masses of unskilled labor from Turkey that flooded into Germany...although there were of course a sizable group of Yugoslavs that did that too...

But even these types of unskilled workers employed by foreign companies eventually returned to Yugoslavia with their savings with which they bought real estate and businesses...not sending some kind of 'remittances' home while they were abroad...

The recent history of Yugoslavia is a massive concoction of revisionism by the Atlanticist media and academia...most of those references cited in that wikipedia article are books written in English in the 2000s and 2010s...ie ex post facto after the Western-engineered breakup of Yugoslavia...

Details matter...it is easy to create false narratives by simply omitting facts as wikipedia does on a massive scale...and by referencing only the politically approved writings of dishonest academics and journalists...

Then we have people like 'somebody' who come along and argue quite strenuously about a country of which they have no first-hand knowledge...and cite wikipedia crap for their disneyland version of reality...

Posted by: flankerbandit | Oct 1 2017 15:16 utc | 123

@123 flankerbandit.. i agree with you on wikipedia.. it is a suspect news outlet, usually always with a western bias to it..

Posted by: james | Oct 1 2017 16:32 utc | 124

@119
How did the Middle East get to this state of affairs? Condescending ? Corruption is a very old tradition going back way before the Ottoman Empire (under which it flourished also).

Posted by: Demijohn | Oct 1 2017 18:55 utc | 125

@Zico | 100

Spot on re. Barzani and Erdogan.
When Erdogan freezes Barzani's assets in Turkey then I might question their relationship. At the moment showing empty airports in Erbil is a media stunt similar to his 'empty square' game.
Having said that Barzani's usefulness has maybe come to an end (- is it at all feasible to prolong his presidency / influence?) Erdogan might see that his best interests now lie with Baghdad given that all recent oil contracts have been signed with Kurdistan and that Baghdads first move has been to insist that all revenues go through them centrally.
Interestingly not much has come out of the Putin Erdogan meeting, might have to wait for the Saudi meeting next week to hear something?

Posted by: AtaBrit | Oct 1 2017 19:00 utc | 126

@4Debsisdead | 120
"So instead of sledging kurds all the time the smart move for both Syria & Iraq, is to get em inside the tent pissing out."
Great turn of phrase,and there arent many Kurds from wherever that would pass up on the opportunity to piss on turkey!
Syria seems to be taking that line in the long term, and I have a feeling Iraq will too.
I wrote in another post a while ago about a balance of powers prior to negotiation and that Kurds in Syria needed their hand strengthening while Kurds, Barzanis troop, in Iraq needed their hand weakening. If both were achieved political settlement in Syria and Iraq might stand a chance and territorial integrity remain.
To avoid a return to the past, the Kurds have to be given their place at the negotiating table. If not, conflict will continue.

Posted by: AtaBrit | Oct 1 2017 19:13 utc | 127

erdogan is a snake the leader of a family of pirates.
he makes 100s of millions of dollars in stolen oil from iraq and syria his donmeh brother in crime is kurd barzani
nothing changes in rapeville the oil and gas will flow the live human organs all heading one way turkey too israel.
tell me i am wrong george webb is a zionist agent but he was corrct about the ratlines.

erodogan would stab his mother in the back for some gold dollars or sheckles sisi,erdogan,barzani all donmeh satanists mass murder for talmud holiday blood fest

Posted by: charles drake | Oct 2 2017 17:41 utc | 128

Excellent review all in all , I just want to add only that the majority in the leadership of PKK/ YPG has shifted away from anarcho-marxists followers of Ocalan, to western-inspired Barzani-type opportunist amoralists. Since last spring through internal procedures. Ocalan's name and heritage directions are only used for fudging purposes.

Posted by: Cyriak Papasissis | Oct 6 2017 18:56 utc | 129

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