Syrian Kurds are better to refrain from another Barzani-Talabani conflict: researcher

<p style="text-align: left;">A Lima Charlie&amp;rsquo;s Managing Editor and the Middle East Bureau Chief, John Sjoholm, stated Kurds in Syria are better to prevent another conflict between Barzanis and Talabanis, two ruling clans in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

He said the Kurds in Syria can achieve more self-rule autonomy in case they reach a deal with the central government in Damascus.

Also a seasoned Middle East specialist, the analyst told Kurdpress in an interview that one of the most sensitive issues of the Kurds is the establishment of an independent Kurdish state in the Middle East but the move will leave big changes on the region and would face a lot of oppositions, even among the Arabs of the region who have, in sensitive situations, voiced their opposition to such a state, as many Arab states expressed their opposition to the independence referendum of Kurdistan Region in 2017 and none of them attempted to soothe the dire after- effects of the move.

The analyst further added Kurds would be used by the West to achieve benefits as long as the Kurdish issue is in line with the political interests of the western powers, but the superpowers do not go with the establishment of a Kurdish state in the region.

How do you describe the West's policy towards Kurds?

I would describe the West&rsquo;s policy towards the Kurds, as in the various Kurdish political and or militia movements operating in the Middle East with the intent of creating a state, as exploitatory in nature. There is little evidence that the West has any genuine interest in aiding the creation of a true sovereign modern-day Kurdish state. If the U.S., for instance, would have desired to do so, it would have happened under either President Bush or Obama administrations. Especially during the early part of the second Bush administration, or around the third year of the first Obama administration. Under President Trump, it appears even less likely that the U.S. will truly support such a notion.

Some analysts believe the West, including the U.S and Russia, just use Kurds as a tool, what do you think in this regard?

The U.S., Russia, the European community, et al., including China &mdash; virtually all the globally operative powers in the Middle East, mainly use the Kurds as a political or tactical tool to further currently prevailing geopolitical interests. This includes the tactical-level support of the Kurdish groups in the fight against the Islamic State, and other similar groups, in its various evolutionary stages. The international political support, especially from Russia right now, for the various Kurdish political groups, such as the PYG and the PKK, is mainly reminiscent of that of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia&rsquo;s support of the Palestinian cause. A lot of talk, but very little shop.

The worst thing that the Kurds can do at this point is to listen to those operators that speak with forked tongues and make golden promises. The Kurds need to apply every ounce of cynicism and pragmatism that they can muster.

Some analysts believe Kurds are pro-west and if they have a state of their own, they can make the Middle East a more stable region, How do you think?

Fundamentally, it could be the case that the creation of a Kurdistan, or whatever name it might take, would be a stabilizing influence on the region. However, it would depend on under what conditions its creation rests upon. The interest of the Iraqis, the Iranians, the Turks, the Syrians, etc., are all to be taken into consideration &mdash; especially if the emerging Kurdish state would either border or be created out of their landmasses.

For example, it is unlikely that the creation of such a state would happen with the support of say present-day Iraq, especially if large portions of the land would come from Iraq. Present day Damascus government is unlikely to be able to support the creation of a Kurdish nation to emerge from within its borders considering the current security landscape within Syria. Iran is unlikely to accept a creation within or near its borders it as the Kurds are, on the whole, perceived as pro-Western and tightly affiliated with the Western military and intelligence interests. Especially as long as the drums of war are being heard so vividly from Washington.

What would be the end game for the Kurds in Syria?

The Kurds in Syria are finding themselves stuck between the proverbial rock and a hard place. As long as the West has an interest in backing them due to tactical interests combined with the Western strategic interest of having highly capable operative capabilities inside a non-controlled zone so close to the Iranian border, the West will also shelter the Kurds. Then mainly in the shape of the PYD/YPG. This will be, however, only last as long as the regional situation is not pushed to a point where the West has to take overtly firm long term sides.

Superficially speaking, the best course of action for the Syrian Kurds are likely to seek some mediation with the Damascus government, followed by them seeking degrees of ever-increasing autonomy combined with increased legitimacy. An evolutionary approach if you will. In the long run, as things change in Damascus and the region overall, this could lead to a natural, organic creation of a Kurdish nation-state in the area. With clear leadership, avoiding such issues as the Talabani-Barzani split in the 90s, and a reasonably functioning and scalable infrastructure.

Reporter&rsquo;s code: 50101

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