‘Post-referendum future unknown’
‘Barzani has powers blessings’
“WHEN we recall the Kurds, our mind immediately goes to the depth of history and brings the memories of the Islamic leader Sultan Salahuddin Al-Ayoubi — the leader who led the Muslims to victory over the Crusaders and brought down the Fatimid State in Egypt who was Kurdish,” columnist, the dean of the College of the Technological Studies at the Public Authority for Applied Education and Training (PAAET) and the Deputy Chairman of the Islamic Heritage Revival Society (IHRS) Dr Wael Al-Hassawi wrote for Al-Rai daily.
“However, the Kurds throughout their long history have always been part and parcel of the Islamic State. In other words, they had never founded an independent state for them, but the historians say they had once founded what they called the Kingdom of Kurdistan in North Iraq, the Red Republic in Azerbaijan, Ararat Republic in Turkey, Mahabad Republic in the North in the 1920s, but all of the above kingdoms and republics were swiftly brought down.
“The Kurds are currently living in Iraq, Iran, Turkey, Syria and Azerbaijan in addition to some other countries. The total population of the Kurds is estimated to be 60 million, but it is needless to say the Kurds had made a lot of attempts to establish an own independent state, but all went in vain, simply because these attempts were resisted by all neighboring countries.
“In this context, we cite the massacre of the Kurds during the reign of the former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein when the Kurds attempted to secede from Iraq and found their independent state in North Iraq.
“Meanwhile, history shows that many extremist Kurdish movements were founded whose aim was to found an independent state for the Kurds and one of the movements was the Kurdish Democratic Union which was led by Saleh Muslim — a wing of the Kurdish Labor Party.
“On the other hand, we look at the article that was penned by the Editor-in-Chief of the Israeli Haaretz newspaper Aluf Benn in 2011 under the title ‘The Middle East Warning During the Reconstruction Phase’ in which he referred to the increasing wave of popular intifadas (uprisings) and said the strong internal struggles in the Middle East, will actually lead to the redrawing of regional maps that will be totally different from Sykes/Picot Agreement and other agreements.
“He added this period of intifadas will see the appearance of new independent states in addition to ‘retreaded’ states such as South Sudan, Kurdistan and Palestine and may be Barqa in East Libya, the Western Desert of Morocco and South Yemen. He hinted these states should be established.
“Ralf Peters penned an article under the title ‘The Frontiers of Blood’. He hinted ‘we are still dealing with tremendous man-made defamations, that still continue to generate grudge and hatred unless they are kept in check’. He added, the biggest injustice here is represented by ‘No State for Kurds’.
“Given the above, we infer that the referendum which was organized by the President of the Kurdistan province of Iraq Masoud Al-Barzani, was to test the waters — the desire of the Kurds — for an independent Kurdish state to be ‘carved’ out of Iraq.
“Actually speaking this has not come from a vacuum, rather it seems Barzani had obtained the necessary green light from the West in general and the United States of America in particular, because the latter had supported the Kurds in various fields even through their (the Kurds) confrontation against the Islamic State (IS) or the so-called ‘DAESH’.
“This happens in spite of an apparent US resentment to the referendum of Barzani under the current circumstances currently facing Iraq.
“With regard to the reactions of the neighboring countries to the Kurdish referendum, they
actually look unknown so far, particularly since we know that the Turks, for instance, had threatened to bring down the state of the Kurds and had vowed to impose economic sanctions on them.
“For its part, the Iraqi government has demanded that Baghdad should ‘dominate’ the areas which are in conflict between Iraq and the upcoming Kurdish state.
“In spite of the above, nobody knows what will happen, but we hope the birth of a Kurdish state in Iraq will not be amid bloodbath, particularly since we know that our countries are no longer capable of handling more problems and struggles and as such it would be absurd to see Iraq being further torn apart and divided.”
“It is needless to say the referendum that was held in the Kurdistan province in a prelude to secede from Iraq is rife with dangerous repercussions and associations which will engulf the entire region that is likely to exceed the danger caused by the Zionist entity (Israel), but how?” columnist Hamad Saleh Al-Qattan wrote for Annahar daily.
“In this context first we cite the direct military, economic and diplomatic support from the Zionist entity Israel to the Kurdistan region, especially Massoud Barzani, and this is confirmed by Israel and Iraq and other political reports. I had earlier penned an article on the Israeli/Kurdish relations.
“Secondly, it will encourage every minority in the Arab and Muslim countries to conduct a referendum for the establishment of a separate administrative, political and military state. This is a fear that is cultivated in all Arab and Muslim countries including the Christians in Egypt and the Kurds in Syria and other minorities in Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Pakistan which cannot be overlooked.
“The third danger is likely be represented by the implementation of the Bernard Lewis scheme of dividing the Arab and Muslim countries into small conflicting states, particularly since we know the Islamic State (IS) or the so-called ‘DAESH’ failed to carry out this scheme and this means it is high time for the minorities in the Arab and Muslim countries to implement the American/Zionist project in question in these countries.
“With regard to the economic danger to be caused by separation of Kurdistan from Iraq, this actually constitutes a threat to all countries of the Middle East region in general and the oil producing countries in particular, because Kurdistan following the annexation of governorate of Kirkuk in 2014 produces as much as 15 percent of the Iraqi oil.
“In spite of the above, some observers say any war in North Iraq against the prospective Kurdish state will actually result in the oil producing countries in the region achieving high revenues from petrodollars, because this war will result in increasing the oil prices in the international market and this will be for the good of these countries.
“Speaking of the fifth danger, this actually will be represented by the prospective Israeli existence in the region and this means this existence will be felt on the borders of four countries which constitute a threat to the Zionist entity including Turkey, Iran, Syria and Iraq. This development shall constitute an opportunity for both Israel and the US to directly threaten these countries.
“However, although this threat is not likely to be big, certainly it will cause ‘a permanent political and intelligence headache’ for these countries and this means the Arab and Muslim countries should not deal recklessly with the Kurdish referendum in question and eventually keep in mind that this represents an outset of a permanent danger against these countries in the name of democracy and freedom of choice.”
“The demographic issue recently became the talk of the town in the Kuwaiti political arena,” Amer Zayeb Al-Tamimi wrote for Al-Qabas daily.
“The government recently issued a decision to reduce the number of expatriate employees in the public sector in the coming five years at different rates based on the work requirements, as well as increase the number of Kuwaiti employees in the public sector.
“However, several concerns were raised about the capability of the government to implement such a decision without qualifying the citizens and developing their skills. Undoubtedly, there are large number of expatriate employees who are occupying administrative, reception and secretarial jobs that citizens can do.
“The private sector must also be adjusted such that it can be made capable of employing large number of citizens and paying them suitable salaries.
“According to a recent report issued by the Public Authority for Civil Information (PACI), there are 129,653 illiterate people in Kuwait who represent 3.4 percent of the total population of Kuwait. About 82 percent of these illiterate people are expatriates.
“This indicates the presence of huge number of marginal workers in Kuwait. In addition, there are large number of expatriates who hold elementary level certificates or lesser. This issue requires comprehensive reform including cancelation of the sponsorship system and assigning the Public Authority for Manpower to monitor the interactions between employees and employers. This is the way visa trafficking can be confronted.
“The education sector is also in dire need for development in order to meet the demands of the labor market. More focus must be given on technical and applied education. The required range of marks for admission to university must be increased.
“Both the legislative and executive authorities must cooperate to achieve economic reform based on the real conditions of the society.”
“Supporters of the decision to increase tariffs on services rendered to expatriates, which include health fees, rent and residency fees are inconsiderate and unreasonable, because the decision is forcing expatriates to send their families (spouses, children or parents) out of the country so as to save money while searching for alternative solution to the predicament,” columnist Khalid Al-Hassan wrote for Al-Shahid daily.
“An alternative solution is usually found in sharing an apartment with five or more people in order to save money and transfer about 80 percent of the salary to their home countries.
“As a matter of fact, the lawmakers and citizens pressing for implementation of the decision do not pay attention to side effect of the decision on Kuwaiti society. We are reminded that social and moral issues will drop drastically if expatriates are encouraged to keep their families in Kuwait.”
“The country of humanity that fills the earth with goodies and prosperity has always extended a hand to those crying out for help in all directions, regardless of their gender, race or religion,” columnist Abdulrahman Al-Awad wrote for AlSabah daily.
“Kuwait, the country of the humanitarian leader and the center of humanity has not quit its acts of generosity, and its people continue to lend a hand to the people in need across the globe, beginning with Syria, Iraq and Yemen ... just to name a few!
“Kuwait’s charity activities are driven by the wise political leadership in the quest to ease the suffering of needy and poor people. This is deemed an honorable achievement in the history of humanity!
“Since the outbreak of the Syrian crisis, Kuwait has been helping out through its humanitarian support to refugees and internally displaced people in an attempt to alleviate their suffering. This is in addition to humanitarian aids to the people of Iraq, Yemen and other countries afflicted by wars, diseases and natural disasters — not forgetting the recent initiative to help displaced Rohingya Muslims based on the directives of HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.”
–– Compiled by Zaki Taleb