The Kurds are on the cusp of betrayal again by U.S. policy makers. It’s not intentional against them, but international powers force the situation, leaving out the Kurds. Their primary enemy is Turkey. But, there’s almost nowhere they can turn. By the end of this they might look towards Communist China and Russia for support. It’s a sad prospect for the U.S.
The Kurds already fear the U.S. is going to betray them once they’ve taken Raqqa. They, of course, will not occupy Raqqa because of ethnic tensions. They are the most capable force in the region. It’s interesting that we go abroad and export our ideals and revolution. But, in this case, we do not afford the Kurds the opportunity to earn their sovereignty, as we did. The Kurds are the probably the most deserving of solidarity over any other group in the region.
What’s more important is they are the consistent, rational actors. The irony is that it’s a widespread belief that the Kurds have embraced socialism and communism. We aren’t their natural allies in that sense. However, there is no love lost between us. Because our cultures mesh well and they’re good people, plainly. Their culture is more like ours than many of our close partners in the region.
I’ve never heard a negative word spoken about our Kurdish partners. That’s rare in a community critical of everyone and ourselves because we strive for perfection. T.E. Lawrence said, “Do not try to do too much with your hands. Better the Arabs do it tolerably than that you do it perfectly. It is their war, and you are to help them, not to win it for them.”
The Kurds are trying to win for their part. They aren’t expecting the battle to be won by the Americans for them. It’s refreshing considering so many of our forces want us to lead them in battle. To accompany them and supply them more and more equipment for the fight. The Kurds have received some equipment, and debate is alive whether or not to arm and equip them even more. Why not? They’re probably the only group we’re confident won’t use our equipment against us in the future.
Here’s an excerpt from an article in the International Business Times discussing the Kurds and U.S. relationship collapsing. “It almost seems like someone took the US strategy, and turned it upside down. Five days ago, US jets were scrambled to protect Kurdish forces in their self-declared Northern Syria Federation from Assad’s air force in the eastern city of Hasakah. Today, in the aftermath of a limited Turkish intervention on Syrian soil, the US is demanding the Kurds leave the northern city of Manbij, which the Kurds fought and died to capture during the past two months – backed by US warplanes.”
Maybe the Kurds are worth our sympathy and a national discussion alongside the ongoing debate of Aleppo and the violence there. Aleppo is a relatively new phenomenon to us. Aleppo might be a short-lived problem when compared to the plight of the Kurdish people, as well as other minorities in the Middle East. If we are to free the oppressed, it includes the Kurds. Just because they’re able to defend themselves does not absolve us from protecting them.
Featured image courtesy of Spiked.