Friday, July 23, 2010

Kurds in Syria deserve self-determination - By David Shemoil22/07/2010

Just like their Kurdish cousins in Iraq, Kurds in Syria, Turkey and Iran are entitled to enjoy some degree of autonomy or self-determination.

The destiny of the 2 million forgotten Kurds in Syria remains more intricate than any other part of Kurdistan, mainly due to its less exposure and citation in the global media. If not further deteriorated, the state of the Kurds in Syria has not ameliorated any better compared to other parts of Kurdistan.

A 35-page report by Human Rights Watch (HRW) titled “A Wasted Decade: Human Rights in Syria during Bashar al-Asad’s First Ten Years in Power”, casts light upon the magnitude of Kurdish misery and latest contemporary developments in Syria.

Like his dictator political cronies in Ankara and Tehran, Syrian President, Bashar Al-Assad, has recently escalated his vicious, antagonistic attitude toward the Kurds in general. The emergence of an economically robust autonomous Kurdish government in North of Iraq caused Damascus to get closer to its long-time Turkish adversary, and accelerated the formation of a trio alliance among Tehran, Ankara and Damascus vis-à-vis the fictional territorial threat presumably posed by the rising power of the Kurds.

During his recent official visit to Ankara, President Bashar Al-Assad lately questioned the role of Kurds in the post-Saddam Iraq as a unifying force. In May, he quoted, “Kurds should be persuaded to live equally and freely in a unified Turkey." In another part of the same speech he argues: "Turkey wants a government to be formed in Baghdad and wants to interact with that new government. If this doesn’t happen, the Kurdish Regional Government shall suffer."

His expressions unmistakably establish the fact that his government directly meddles into the internal affairs of Iraq. In the interim, through his intimidating tone of rhetoric, he purports to transmit a signal to Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) to expect dire consequences in case of seeking secession and not cooperating with Baghdad.

Since his assumption of power in 2000, President Assad has not demonstrated any determination to address the long-standing issue of 2 million marginalized Kurds in Syria. He has not delivered on his economic and political promises to public, and has taken no concrete initiative to curb foreign fighters infiltrating from Syria into Iraq. Worst of all is his government’s appalling and deteriorating human rights records. Let not forget Syrian direct involvement in 2004 Baghdad explosions, sponsor of terrorist global networks, assassination of Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in February 2005, his country’s role in the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict and his consistent enmity toward the state of Israel, and last but not least his harboring of high-ranking members of Iraqi Baa’th party and other major terrorist leaders.

Syria had a moribund economy, a threadbare military, and embroiled in internal quandaries. In addition to difficulties in the other social and political spheres, Syria completely was isolated from most of the international community, and the succession of Bashar Al-Assad even made it worse.

The threat Damascus poses to global peace and security is no less than Iranian accession to nuclear weapons. The United States attempted every viable means to persuade Damascus to abandon its harboring, funding and training of terrorist groups. Diplomatic isolation, economic sanctions, psychological pressures have all proved to be fruitless with the repressive Al-Assad regime

It is time to collapse Syrian Arab Socialist Baath Party regime and supplant it with a friendly, democratic one. With the demise of the ruling regime in Damascus, most of the Middle East dilemmas will be settled and numerous global terrorist groups will vanish.

No dictator regime has lasted forever nor will Syrian.