Friday, June 03, 2005

Kurdish Media on Syria had an interesting article yesterday entitled "Syria Should Stop Playing With Fire."

There are no American troops in Syria. And there are no other active, armed movements bent on destroying the Syrian government, whether Kurdish or Islamist. So, why this violence against our people? Why do we still have hundreds of Kurds in jail, tortured daily? Why do the Kurdish families receive daily, the bodies of their missing loved ones? And now we have the tortured and mutilated body of Sheikh Khaznawi, a genuinely peace loving, progressive, Sunni Muslim cleric, a rarity in Syria, Western Kurdistan and the Arab Middle East. Ten thousand people in Qamishlo demanded from the Syrian government, in vain, his safe release soon after "the disappearance".

Someone needs to step up to Syria. Shexmus Amed goes on to say:

But it is high time that the USA too abandoned their softly softly approach to this Baathist dictatorship. Not only does Syria continue to facilitate the passage of Jihadists into Iraq to be used as suicide murderers, but it also acts as a "liberated zone" where terrorists can enjoy some rest and recuperation before returning to carry out more raids in Iraq and Kurdistan. Early last month the US Marines engaged an apparently large and well armed group of Jihadists on the northwestern regions of the Al-Anbar province, trying to infiltrate into Iraq. If Syria was genuinely interested in cooperation against Jihadists, then they would have carried out a parallel operation on their side of the border to prevent the retreat of these terrorists back into Syrian territory.

Instead Syria is allowed to play cheap and dirty politics. Large chunks of intelligence apparatus and military forces withdrawn from Lebanon have now been stationed in Syrian Kurdistan. Such is the twisted world of the Middle East that even the peaceful liberation of an Arab country, under pressure from the UN and the US, occurs to the further detriment of an already brutally oppressed part of Kurdistan. One could have reasonably expected that Syria, always complaining of limited resources in its fights against Jihadists, would employ this extra military and intelligence capacity to combat Jihadists on its own territory, instead of arraying them against the Kurds.

The USA should put Syria on notice. If not, the Kurdish leaders in Arbil and Suleymaniyah should do so. If Syria does not stop the ongoing murder and persecution of the Kurds in its own territory and if it does not stop the crossing of Jihadists and fascists into Iraq and Kurdistan, then the very existence of the Syrian state may be in danger. Not only will the Kurds feel entitled to assist, politically and militarily, their brethren in Western Kurdistan, but the USA also may well be amenable to the partition of Syria’s Kurdish territory and its incorporation into Southern Kurdistan. Thus, at least the Arab yoke will forever have been thrown off the entire length of Kurdistan. The great Sunni Muslim cleric and Kurdish patriot, Martyr Sheikh Muhammad Mashuq Khaznawi, would have approved.

I can't say I disagree. It is certainly time for the U.S. to start getting serious about pressuring Syria to change their ways. I've said before and I say again, American soldiers are dying in Iraq because of Syria's wreckless support for terrorism both within Syria and in Iraq. To read the entire article click here.

I leave Sunday morning to return to Baghdad. I look forward to once again giving you the story first hand.