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Op-Ed: McGurk between Kurds and US

Kurdish author Chiman Salih questions why Brett McGurk was allowed to stray from the American tradition of protecting human rights around the world when he denounced the referendum for Kurdish independence as illegitimate. According to Salih, Trump should rid his administration of all Obama-era relics, including McGurk, in order to preserve the United States’ greatness.
Brett McGurk Photo Credit: EPA

Brett McGurk, special presidential envoy for the global coalition to defeat ISIS, repeatedly described the referendum for the independence of Kurdistan, which is scheduled to be held on September 25, as illegitimate in a press conference held in Erbil after a meeting with Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani.

I don't want to recount history and the right of the Kurdish people to establish an independent state, but I would like to know why McGurk was allowed to break the decades-long record of the United States’ role in the fight to protect human rights around the world.

When he announced the referendum, Barzani noted that the vote could be canceled if the US provides guarantees for an independent Kurdistan. So, if the US is so critical of the referendum, then it needs to come up with a new plan to ensure the independence of my nation.

Barzani said in a meeting with Kurdish academics that the US is very important to the Kurds but independence is also important. The statements made by McGurk ignored the desire of the thousands of citizens who crammed into a stadium in Zakho city chanting for independence while he was speaking. Going against the will of the people does not represent the US at all!

The greatness of US is indisputable. The Kurds have achieved many things over the last 25 years thanks to the support from the US. Various US officials have noted that Kurds are America’s closest ally in the region. The White House, the US Department of State and the Pentagon should have strategic plans for the Kurds. McGurk is supposed to be US President Donald Trump’s envoy for the fight against ISIS but it seems that his plans go further than the fighting and spill over to determining the future of this volatile region and continuing the suffering of the Kurdish people.

Furthermore, McGurk is one of the relics of the Obama administration, which proved unqualified in dealing with the Middle East crises by turning the region into a more unsteady place. According to military experts, the war plans that were supervised by McGurk are fragile, especially when compared with those that are launched by Iran, Russia and Turkey.

Unfortunately, Mc Gurk wants to cover up all his failure in the Middle East by plotting another time against the Kurds, the most oppressed people in the region. Kathryn Cameron Porter, the head of the Leadership Council for Human Rights, wrote: “I will fight for the Kurds on the ground there or in the halls of Congress - enough is enough.” The American people should defend the US greatness in the world and the Trump administration should rid itself of the old Obama remnants.



JOL Blogger | Chiman Salih

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