Baghdad is dawning in political crises while Hawler is prospering
Many parts of the Sunni-populated areas were overrun by ISIS, the opposition and the former Baathists military agents on June 10. It did not only lead Iraq to further risks and crises, but it also moved Iraq into a new stage of political, social, ethnic and even cultural life. Now a large part of Arabic Iraq is ruled by the Islamic Caliphate. The Islamic State has previously been declared.
Iraqi army has been absent in most of the country’s territories. Kurdistan Region borders with Iran, Turkey, Syria and the areas controlled by ISIS and radical Islamist groups are protected by Peshmerge and the Kurdistan security forces. The rich oil and strategic city of Kirkuk is now a part of Kurdistan. Stability and coexistence of various ethnic groups are maintained in those areas.
Russia vowed to provide Iraq with warplanes and weapons to support Nuri al-Maliki. The U.S Daily Beast has published the following: “In the following days, the Russian pilots will be flying over Iraq, five combat jets of total of the 12 that have been sold arrived in Iraq, accompanied by Russian trainers." The newspaper believes that due to the limited numbers of Iraqi pilots, the Russian pilots are flying the warplanes in the war against ISIS. The Iraqi army, especially naval and air forces have no military capacity any longer. And the ground forces of al-Maliki with soldiers, tanks, artilleries and other heavy military equipment retreated and fled the battle field. The weapons the army left in Mosul airport fell into ISIS's hands. They can possibly use these warplanes like the Russians, as it happened two weeks ago when Bashar Assad’s warplanes bombarded Iraqi soil.
So Russia could directly intervene in Iraq as it is currently taking part in the Syria war. This creates a new war front and a kind of alliance between Nuri al-Maliki, Iran, Russia and Syria that would undoubtedly back Shias and would overtly be against the U.S strategies in the Middle East.
So in case of any direct intervention of Russia, the opposing international front will seriously increase, in this case the Sunni front: countries like Saudi Arabia, Arab Gulf states, a part of Lebanon, Egypt, Yemen and most importantly Turkey will not remain as bystanders. Among all these encounters, a sudden and fatal confrontation may occur in a possibly wider geographical area than of now.
On July 1, the Iraqi Council of Representatives held its first meeting since April elections. It was a futile and failed meeting. The parties were not able to agree on the routes and principles of forming the new government. By the withdrawal of the Kurdish bloc and some other Sunni parties from the meeting and the disapproval of some Shiaa parties over Maliki’s nomination for the third term, the meeting of the Representatives came to nothing. It was a certain failure. Iraq’s crises will not last another two weeks due to two factors:
Firstly, if Nuri al-Maliki remains in power, the crises will deteriorate and Iraq will head toward a rapid destruction.
And if not, the agreement to govern Iraq by a power sharing government with a real and equal partnership is hard and difficult to materialize. So Iraq is under the threat of collapsing in all ways. We saw that Maliki’s State of Law couldn’t contain themselves psychologically and intended to demonstrate that nothing has happened in Iraq, and all other components should obey their policies. They practice ostrich politics. In the first meeting of the Iraqi Council of Representatives on July 1, some people close to al-Maliki accused the Kurds of supporting the ISIS, which is another alarming bell against the Kurds. The Kurds are not protecting themselves only, but also thousands of Christian and Arab refugees who fled the ISIS and the oppression of al-Maliki’s forces and settled them in the Kurdish cities of Hawler and Duhok. So instead of building trust with Nuri al-Maliki, the Kurds should think of other alternatives: they should ignore Baghdad once for all.
Secondly, the Kurds believe that the Iraq after June 10 is different and it won’t return to the time prior to this date. In their dealings with Baghdad, they rely on some factors. A large part of Sunni areas also no longer under the control of Baghdad, those are new-old neighbors to Kurds and have declared Islamic State in it. So the Kurds should deal with their new neighbors and the old friends (Shiaa) as a new reality. Most of the Kurdish territories including Kirkuk until Shingal, Makhmoor, Khanaqin, a part of Dyalah and Salahadin have rejoined Kurdistan and are now under the control of Kurdistan Region. The political, geographical and historical realities have changed totally.
The situation as a whole has changed. The unfolding of events and developments are rapid. Some new changes which no one ever thought of may be occurring. Most of the local, regional and international centers of politics and decision makers have come to believe that Iraq will be partitioned. This may not include only Iraq, because the region in general is heading towards the policies of confrontation and disparity. The disaster the Sykes- Picot treaty caused now is revisiting its owners in another form. At the same time, the ethnic groups seem to be heading toward further violence. They try to unite and cooperate among themselves to eliminate their historical enemies. The developments in Iraq are rapid and dramatic; the politicians in Baghdad seem not to sense the risk and seriousness of these developments. They treat the situation in cold manner. And some people believe that things are just the same as before. While we know that the only place in the Middle East which is now happily making crucial decisions is the Kurdistan Region. Kurdistan wants to gain the world public opinion which is exactly opposite to what Baghdad is doing. Hawler develops. We build a brighter future for all the ethnic and religious groups here. We predict even a brighter dawn to break in KURDISTAN in the near future.