The declaration of the Kurdish state, which had been scheduled by the leader of the Kurdish Autonomous Region Masoud Barzani for the 21st March 2012, did not take place. Ishkhan Miroev, editor-in-chief of "The Free Kurdistan" shared his thoughts in an interview with Pravda.Ru about the failure.
In the course of history, the Kurds have fallen victim to domestic and foreign enemies. As everyone already knows, the Serves World Peace Treaty, signed in 1920 in France between Antanta and defeated Turkey, granted Kurdistan permission to be independent. And, as we know, the Kurds were deceived. All this led to their lands being immediately divided up between a few countries, and that subsequently led to tragedy. That was how Saddam Hussein managed to destroy 5000 Kurds with chemical weapons. Or there's the example of Syria, where, with complete permissiveness, the government carried out a bloody conflict in 2004, costing the Kurdish people dozens of lives.
That is why they do not trust anybody and play a careful game, for they are afraid of once again becoming a gaming chip for other, more powerful, countries. The Kurds have understood Reagan's words well, when he said that Kurdistan is a matchbox, that might at any moment act in its own aims and interests.
Nevertheless, in view of what you have already said, the Kurds would not utterly reject the idea of creating their own state?
The question is would the other players let such a state be created? Firstly, danger is emanating from Turkey, which is prepared to send troops in to strangle the new state as it germinates. The Turks know all too well that the situation in the Middle East is changing very quickly and after Assad's fall from power, the final hour will come for the Iranians and Turks of Kurdistan. These dangers are not coincidental; they all follow one another like links in a chain. And of course it is possible that the "loudest" event might happen amongst the Turks in Kurdistan itself, where almost half of all Kurds live, around 20million people altogether. In spite of the fact that the Turkish authorities are consciously trying to reduce the number of Kurdish people, as by the way many other countries are also doing, in reality the Kurds number more than 40 million people.
And what about Iran?
Even though certain steps have been taken by the government of Iran in terms of the Kurds, at the heart of all this is the fact that they do not solve problems, in as much as the question of cultural autonomy has still not been decided, and they are fighting for their constitutional rights. I have noticed that there aren't any serious problems between the Kurds and the Iranians themselves. They have a lot in common; these are primordial but not alien inhabitants of a region with a single Indo-European language at its core.
Nevertheless, the Iranian authorities are, to put it mildly, far from sorting out the Kurds' problems . Generally, when we talk about the Kurdish situation it's impossible to ignore the fact that in Russia they have many more rights than in their homeland. It is no coincidence that the brigade PJAK is active in the Iranian part of Kurdistan, which is a military wing of the Russian Party Committee. They are not insurgents or criminals, as they are depicted to be in Tehran, rather they are simply people struggling for their human rights.
In what way does this situation pose a threat to Armenia?
Armenia is no exception to the rule, since those countries which Kurds live in also oppress them. Here we can observe a simply enormous anti-Kurdish campaign. In many respects it has created a desire to return to "Western Armenia" and does not exclude the fact that in case of leaving this Kurdish border zone between the Armenian and Turkish territory of Yerevan it will want to "get it back again" as it used to be when in 1920 the Armenians attempted to create "Great Armenia".
But nobody will give anyone anything that simply. A large part of these lands which the Armenian revenge-seekers dream of are sitting on the Turkish border-zone and is territory inhabited by Kurds. Of course, it is impossible to ignore the question of the Kurds' historical claim, representatives of whom took part in the events of 1915-18 fighting on the Turkish side, a fact which in Yerevan has not been forgotten.
It is appropriate at this point to mention an Armenian saying, which states that "you can have a conversation with the Devil, but just not with a Kurd." This view has led to the almost total expulsion of the Kurdish population from Armenia, with the exception of a few Ezidi, a people from the North of Iraq.
The question then arises as to the precise borders of the future Kurdish state. Will it accept and recognise the Iranian authorities? After all, from the moment of the declaration of the autonomous region of Iranian Southern Kurdistan, a number of disputed points had not been resolved, but the most important ones had...
Barzani declared Kirkuk to be "the heart of the Kurdish state" which they resolutely disagreed with in Baghdad. The thing is that Saddam Hussein evicted Kurds from that strategically oil-rich region, replacing them with Turks which signified the arising of future conflict.
Translated by Emily Ferris