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Kurds face hardships

Date: 9/26/2013

Ever since the breakup of the Ottoman Empire, the Kurdish people have been seeking their own autonomous state.

During the Iraq/Iran war from 1980-1988, the U.S. gave Saddam Hussein (then an ally) the weapons of mass destruction to even the score against Tehran. Saddam used these weapons to butcher the Kurds when they decided to jump ship and side with the Iranians. The Iraqui Kurds were forced to flee to the northern parts of Iraq.

As of late, there have been reports of Islamist attacks on Kurdish towns in Syria. While the Kurds are trying to stay neutral in this conflict, it appears rebel groups such as the Al-Nusra front, the Free Syrian Army and interestingly enough, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant all seem to assess that the Kurdish areas in Syria are easy targets at which to gain ground in their quest to topple the Assad regime.

Turkey is believed to be actively supporting the Al-Nusra Front in hopes that it will prevent Kurdish independence on its borders. To complicate matters, the Kurds do themselves oppose the Syrian government.

In the broader scheme of things, the U.S. is throwing its support behind the rebels in the Syrian civil war.

To be Kurdish means to be prepared to pack up and go at a moments notice, but to where?

Bill Paul