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June 10, 2004

Big News: Iraqis Say Shia-Kurd Dispute Resolved

One of the biggest problems confronting Iraq is the Kurdish question. Basically, the Kurds want strong minority rights and a great deal of autonomy over their own local affairs. The majority Shi'ites, quite selflishly, want to provide very little in this regard, and to put the Kurds into the position of a dominated and fairly powerless minority.

After 50 years of being dominated by another ethnic minority, the Shi'ites apparently feel that now it's their turn to start oppressing.

Obviously, because America is torn between two critical goals. On the one hand, we have to appease the majority Shi'as if there's ever going to be a stable, unified Iraq at all. On the other hand, we can't just sell out the Kurds in the interests of stability. We can't take a very large minority group and make them less free and less Western-liberal than they were under Saddam by putting them under the Shi'a yoke.

And the Kurds won't have any of that anyway-- they're threatening to secede if their interests are not formally recognized, which might actually be a great solution as far as Iraq itself goes, but of course the Turks and Syrians and Iranians are dead-set against that.

This is the one big problem that actually makes me wonder about the ultimate success of the Iraqi project.

Fortunately, the new Iraqi government says that it's reached a compromise with the Kurds on the question of federalism:

Allawi said he had sorted out the autonomy dispute in talks with Kurdish leaders, but gave no details.

"This issue has been resolved," he told reporters.

Obviously, I don't know what this means. I hope that the Shi'as understand that they can't simply have full power over the day-to-day lives of the Kurds, and I hope that the Kurds are willing to accept some diminishment of autonomy for the sake of peace.

Oh, and, by the way: Butt-sex, weiners, homos, and poopie-stinkies.

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posted by Ace at 06:22 PM

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