A Fi­nan­cial Bom­bard­ment on the Re­gion

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS - By Gazi Has­san

The Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is fac­ing a chal­leng­ing time— a time harder than war. Pres­i­dent Barzani an­nounced two im­por­tant de­ci­sions for back­ing up the KRG re­forms and elim­i­nat­ing cor­rup­tion within KDP. Both de­ci­sions are im­por­tant for any hope of fu­ture pros­per­ity and trust be­tween the peo­ple and au­thor­i­ties of Kur­dis­tan.

Mark Toner, Deputy Spokesman of US State Depart­ment, sa­did re­gard­ing the ref­er­en­dum: “We’ve al­ways been clear and our pol­icy hasn’t changed that we sup­port a united, fed­eral, di­verse and demo­cratic Iraq.” We don’t know which force is pro­tect­ing this ‘uni­fied Iraq’. Will the Shi­ites be the warrantor of main­tain­ing a uni­fied Iraq? Th­ese kinds of an­nounce­ment are ob­vi­ous backup for Abadi’s uni­lat­eral rule that has, time and again, stirred fur­ther sec­tar­ian vi­o­lence.

The ar­gu­ment that the cur­rent con­di­tions rep­re­sent a united and demo­cratic Iraq clearly miss the re­al­ity on the ground that the coun­try is mov­ing to­wards a govern­ment run by Hashd Al-Shahbi. There’s no doubt that ISIS, Ezidi mas­sacre, sec­tar­ian Sunni-Shi­ite con­flict are con­se­quence of the Shi­ite uni­lat­eral rulers. Let’s stop with the pre­tense of the “unity of Iraq”. The cut­ting of the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion bud­get is an­other con­se­quence of sup­port­ing and urg­ing forcible uni­fi­ca­tion of Iraq.

For the se­cond time, the Re­gion’s oil pipe­line was blown up at the end of last week. The PKK an­nounced they are against the Re­gion’s oil and gas ex­por­ta­tion via Turkey. In th­ese in­ci­dences, doubt will grow and fin­gers will point at the PKK. This will de­te­ri­o­rate the eco­nomic sit­u­a­tion in Kur­dis­tan even fur­ther.

Al-Ab­badi re­cently said he’s “ready to sup­ply Re­gion’s bud­get for oil.” A year ago, an of­fi­cial agree­ment was signed be­tween Er­bil and Bagh­dad with the pres­ence of an ex­ter­nal third party. SOMO re­ceived the cash from sold oil but AlAb­badi didn’t send the bud­get as agreed on. So Al-Ab­badi is es­sen­tially say­ing: “If Sad­dam Hus­sein, with chem­i­cal bom­bard­ment, An­fal and dis­place­ment of thou­sands of vil­lages, couldn’t elim­i­nate you, I can do it with money, which is more se­ri­ous and ef­fec­tive.”

Some political an­a­lysts be­lieve the Shi­ite au­thor­i­ties have been at­tempt­ing for two years to pro­voke the peo­ple against the KRG and throw the coun­try into chaos. They point to re­marks that Al-Ab­badi has made that seem to have no in­ten­tion other than caus­ing political dis­or­der. The KRG gave Bagh­dad a log­i­cal re­sponse in of­fer­ing oil for their share of the bud­get but Al-Ab­badi is silent. The ball is his court.

What does unity of Iraq mean for a Kurd who has been in the past elim­i­nated by chem­i­cal bom­bard­ment and now a fi­nan­cial poi­sonous bom­bard­ment?

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