Kurdistance: Three Week Update

After a brief hiatus, I'm back and clicking away…three weeks have passed and we have a lot to cover….

At the end of July it was announced that Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman would be doing a promotional tour of the US and Europe to talk about The Other Iraq- Iraqi Kurdistan. While this would have seemed to be a great opportunity to promote Kurdish culture, it was greeted lukewarmly. Non-Kurdish bloggers’ reaction ranged from distrustful at the ad campaign as either too pro-war in Iraq or too right wing to a short interview discussing the main ideas of The Other Iraq's website. Unfortuately, Kurdish bloggers didn't take advantage of this opportunity. Vladimir on From Holland to Kurdistan advertised the announcement (as well as the Kurdistan Blog Count), and posted a piece that comedian John Stewart has performed on The Other Iraq's Ad Campaign promotion.

With events occuring as they are in Lebanon, Kurdish bloggers are still talking about the implications of war there. Roj Bash! gives a history of the Kurds of Lebanon. From Holland to Kurdistan posts the Kurdistan Party of Lebanon's statement of condemnation of the Israeli attacks. Kurdish Aspect writes about the attempted parallels drawn by the Turkish government of the PKK and Hezbollah. And Sami from An Iraqi's Thoughts writes about how the war between Hezbollah and Israel is changing the Middle East in unexpected ways.

Now from the thematic review of things to some of the individual blogs. Hiwa from Hiwa Hopes writes about the importance of August 21st, the day marking the beginning of the Anfal Campaign against the Kurds. He encourages all Kurds to demonstrate on that day to show the world the resilence of the Kurdish people. Other stories he gives us is a sad case of a Kurdish aslyum seeker who ruined his chances of winning his court case when he was asked to swear on the Quran. And lastly, Hiwa critizes the Kurdistan Regional Government's new policy of resource allocation as something that should have happened a long time ago.

From Holland to Kurdistan writes about his Holland-based Kurdish news site, Azady.nl, being hacked by Turkish hackers. Other topics were the recent report to the European Union on the cultural situation of the Kurds in Turkey and how the Kurds and the Turkmen in Iraq could be an excellent example for peace. And lastly, he has an excellent piece about PKK terrorism:

I will now deal with one of the most controversial issues in Turkey: “PKK terrorism”. Personally I do not like to use the word terrorism. For Turkey the PKK is a terrorist organisation and for a lot of Kurds, they are freedom fighters. In this era of the war “against terrorism”, the word terrorism appears a lot on the TV screens. Many times “terrorist” actions are used to fight “terrorism”. Often governments turn into totalitarian and oppressive institutions, only to combat terrorism. Therefore I refrain from using the word terrorist, as it’s clearly biased. Both the Turkish state and the PKK used violence in the past. And I also refrain from calling them both terrorists!…..

….In my humble opinion the main problem is not the PKK. “Terrorism” is mostly a result of political exclusion and social exclusion. And that’s the problem! Kurds are excluded from a democratic and free environment in Turkey. Next to this problem is the recent upsurge of violence (2004) coming from both sides. This violence endangers a democratic and peaceful solution to the Kurdish issue.

a must read for this week.
Until next time!

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