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Welcome back to this week's edition of Kurdistance!

Hiwa [1] gives us a wonderful link to a amatur video about the Kurdish community in Leeds, UK [2] that is featured on the BBC [3]. Hiwa also reports on an incident that has made headlines in Turkey. At a recent NATO seminar, an American lieutenant colonel used a map of the Middle East showing possible re-drawn borders in Iraq. On this particular map the Southeast of Turkey was included in the borders of a new country called “Free Kurdistan”. [4] This has angered Turkish officals and an apology from US General Peter Pace had to be given to the Turkish Chief of Staff, General Yasar Buyukanit [5] for the incident.

General Yasar Buyukanit has been a vocal opponent to all things Kurdish [6] this week, as Rasti [7]explains

“Which action of the military is undemocratic?” Buyukanit asked. “I am a soldier, and I am carrying out the duties given to me by laws. As soldiers, we have nothing to do with politics. However, if there are those who are disturbed by our assessments on security and regime, it is up to them.”

This is hilarious! The Turkish miltary has nothing to do with politics unless there's a coup in the works–whether hard or soft–and any duties given to the military by laws, are given to it by laws that were written by generals. If a country has a constitution written by generals, a constitution which serves to protect the state from the people, then that country is not a democracy. Therefore, every action the military undertakes according to such a constitution is, by its very nature, undemocratic.

Yasar Pasha is also worried about the Islamist threat, but he doesn't mention that is was the pashas who created the Islamist threat by their deal with the Islamists back in the early 1980's. Ostensibly this was to help contain the threat of Soviet expansion, the threat of Islamist expansion from Iran, and, especially, to counter the politicization of the Kurdish people. The pashas agreed to the Turkish-Islamist synthesis, believing that, through this means, they could control both the Islamist threat and Kurdish resistance. Plus it offered the potential to be a cheap way of combatting the PKK, so much so that Tansu Ciller admitted publicly that she had signed the order to give weapons to Turkish Hezbollah from military installations in Turkish-occupied Kurdistan.

Mizgin also writes about how the US PKK Coordinator is also on the board of Lockheed Martin, who recently arranged a very large arms shipment deal to the Turkish Military [8]….a case of an obvious conflict of interest and a case detailing the emminent failure of the PKK ceasefire. [9]

we read that US intentions toward the Kurdish people are moving in rhythm of the same song and dance that we all know so well. The “bad” Kurds remain “bad” Kurds, and the US has no interest in making a place at the table for those issues that “bad” Kurds face daily. Those issues include the recent increase in repression, especially as outlined in the new anti-terror law, the removal of America's allies, the Pashas, from the control of civil government, or an end to the Ankara regime's policy of equality through forced assimilation. Let's make it absolutely clear that this severe repression has been, and continues to be, actively assisted by the policies of the US government.

The joke is that the US has appointed a PKK coordinator in order to “counter PKK,” while ignoring gross human rights abuses perpetrated by Turkey, the eternal victim. Considering that both the Ankara regime and Washington have appointed two former generals to “counter the PKK,” there will be no effort on the part of either state to negotiate a peaceful solution to the dire situation of the Kurdish people. To complete the tirumvirate of evil against the Kurdish people, is Iraqi general, Amir Amed Hassun, a Sunni Arab.

Kurdish Aspect [10] has been focusing this week on the tensions between the Turkish Government and the Kurdistan Regional Government in Northern Iraq over the status of the PKK and whether or not it is acceptable for the KRG to negotiate with the terrorist organization [11].

Why is it okay for Turkey to dialog with Hammas when Hamas is listed as a terrorist organization by Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, the European Union, Israel, and the U.S., and is banned in Jordan? However, it is not acceptable for Jalal Talabani, a Kurd and president of Iraq, to talk to PKK. In addition, Talabani’s dialog with PKK is nothing new. It was not long ago when former Turkish president, Turgut Özal, appealed for Talabani assistants to reach a deal with PKK in order to resolve the Kurdish issue. The cease fire of the 90’s was the direct result of those negotiations. Unfortunately Mr. Ozal passed away and those talks ended. In a short period of time, northern Kurdistan was again engulfed in violence.

However, the issue of the KRG's ability to negotiate with anyone is not an old one [12] in Iraqi political spheres.

Roj Bash [13], is back up and running again with a four part (so far anyway) travelogue of a French speaking Kurd traveling back to Hawler [14] in Southern Kurdistan/Northern Iraq. Unfortuately the author of these pieces is not listed on the blog entry itself (Roj Bash is a group blog). Topics covered in this travelouge include a trip to the Citadal and Bazar [15], a visit to the Ministry of Extra-Regional Affairs [16], and hanging out at a local park [17].

Vladimir on From Holland to Kurdistan [18] reports about the latest news of a standard Kurdish language program being developed in the United States at the University of Indiana, Bloomington. [19] This program is the first University program in the United States that has Kurdish language instruction. Vladimir also reports on a recent rash of Kurdish websites being hacked into by a Turkish group called Ayyildiz. [20]

One could expect more attacks against Kurdish websites in the future. In Holland, one can get a one-year jail sentence for hacking websites. The Dutch website Zinloosgeweld.nl wanted to take legal steps, but since the Turkish hackers mostly operate from Turkey, this is fruitless. The only way you can prevent attacks, is by protecting and updating your website regularly.