Kurds, Jews and a New Mideast

(Jerusalem Post) Dan Diker and Harold Rhode - Dore Gold's prescient analysis, "The Demise of the Middle East's Borders" (Israel Hayom, May 25), illustrates the geographic uncertainty toward which the Arab Muslim Middle East appears to be heading. The often violent competition for power and control among Islamic groups in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq, that house Sunnis and Shi'ites, Alawites, Kurds, Druse, Christians and others, continues to cut across the random boundaries that were established by the British and French empires as a result of the Sykes-Picot agreement of 1916. The Kurds, while overwhelmingly Sunni, see the Muslim Brotherhood and the Wahhabis as Arab imperialists trying to force them to abandon their Kurdish identity and become Arabs - probably the reason most Kurds loathe the Muslim Brotherhood. For the Brotherhood, being Sunni is not enough. In their view, only Arabs can be true Muslims. Non-Arabs must abandon their languages and cultures and adopt an Arab identity - the same attitude which explains how most of the Middle East became Arab and Muslim during the first century of Islam. In addition to the Kurdish self-governing authority in northern Iraq, Syria's unraveling has left the Kurdish minority its own geographical unit, while Turkey has recently reached out to its Kurds. Iraqi Kurdistan's success as an autonomous area or a potentially independent state may influence a process of self-determination for other sects, tribes, ethnic and religious groups. There are an estimated 35 to 45 million Kurds in the Middle East, many of whom have been secretly sympathetic to Israel for years. Kurdish suffering under Arab, Turkish and Iranian rule infuses them with a natural affinity for Jews and Israel.

2013-05-31 00:00:00

Full Article


Visit the Daily Alert Archive