Skip to comments.Rumsfeld: Northern Attack on Iraq Would Have Helped Squelch Insurgents
Posted on 03/20/2005 1:35:07 PM PST by MamaLucci
The level of insurgency in postwar Iraq wouldn't be so high if the U.S.-led coalition had been able to invade from the north, through Turkey, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Sunday.
(Excerpt) Read more at ap.tbo.com ...
They were looking to protect their own. They are still afraid of the Kurds in Iraq joining with 'their' Kurds.
Another reason to support an independent Kurdistan.
We can thank the French also.
The French and Germans blackmailed them. If you want in the EU you don't help the Americans. That plus the Kurd fear was enough to get them to go along.
Kattracks, we miss you, come home....come home.....:)
It's nice to hear the confirmation I was right. :)
We didn't come in through the north, so the idiots north of Baghdad weren't ground up.
In support of my earlier analysis of what went wrong in the invasion - not the stuff the media says, but in not gaining a battleforce access through the north.
Actually the Turks did us a favor, otherwise now we would
be caught between them both.
What happens from now on is brought on by the Turks themselves, we cannot now stand in the middle and say to
the Kurds,"Look the turks helped us depose Saddam, be
reasonable and we will try to work this out".
That may not be as much of the story as I once thought it might be.
The situation may be bit more complicated and a bit less threatening than that. In this commentary recently republished in The Daily Star (Lebanon), Peter Galbraith makes some interesting and rather surprising (to me) observations about Turkish/Iraqi Kurdish relations. Galbraith teaches at the National War College in Washington.
There is no such place," the Turkish intelligence officer told my son earlier this month. He was going through our luggage at the Turkish end of the Habur bridge that separates Turkey from northern Iraq, and had found a chess set with the place of origin, "Kurdistan," carved into it. After initially insisting we return the set to Iraq, he loaned Andrew a screwdriver to gouge out the offending word.
Fifty meters away from the Turkish intelligence post, at the other end of the bridge, is a sign that reads "welcome to Kurdistan of Iraq." The operative question is how long the "of Iraq" will be there. The Iraqi flag does not fly at the border crossing or anywhere else in Iraqi Kurdistan (though a pre-1991 version of the flag does fly on a few public buildings in the sector controlled by the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan). The Kurdistan flag, a green-white-red tricolor with a bright yellow sun, is ubiquitous. The Kurdistan government - not the authorities in Baghdad - controls the Habur crossing. There are no central government offices in Kurdistan and the Kurdistan government does not allow the Iraqi Army to send its forces into the region.
And, should there be any doubt about where all this is heading, the people of Kurdistan voted in an advisory referendum on Iraq's election day on whether Kurdistan should remain part of Iraq or be independent. Two million people voted (almost the same number as in the regular ballot) and 97 percent chose independence.
[. . .]
Like the military man we encountered at the border, some Turks are in denial about the new reality in Iraq. But, overall, Turkey's response to emerging Kurdistan has been sophisticated. Many Turks - both close to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's government and, more surprisingly, in the military-intelligence-diplomatic establishment known as the "deep state" - see opportunity as well as peril in developments in Iraqi Kurdistan
[. . . ]
Separatist sentiment among Turkey's Kurds has sharply declined, not only with the military defeat of the PKK but also with the prospect that all of Turkey - including the southeast - might join the EU. Wrong steps on Iraq - particularly those that compromise EU accession or indeed the substantial advances made on Kurdish rights in Turkey as a result of that process - could reignite nationalist sentiment among Turkey's Kurds.
[. . .]
Enlightened commentators in Turkey note that Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan have a lot in common, and not just shared bonds of ethnicity. The Iraqi Kurds have the same Western and secular orientation that defines the modern Turkish state. Instead of being seen as subversive, many Turks (including in the deep state itself) now view Iraqi Kurdistan as a potential ally, a bulwark against a militant Islamic Iraq.
What this observation does do is that it puts the lie to all the babies who insist that the insurgency happened, or has been as prolonged as it was, because Bush or Rummy "miscalculated" or "didn't put enough boots on the ground".
No amount of "calculation" or "boots on the ground" would have reversed Turkey's decision or its ramifications.
The ramifications were bad, and that happens in wars: events happen with bad ramifications. But overall, the war has been one of the most successful comparably-sized wars in human history.
It is also nice to have proof positive that adults are in charge of our government.
This puts the lie to the criticism from the usual suspects
saying we had no plan to "win the peace".....we most certainly did.
Turkey PROMISED cooperation, then reneged, if I remember correctly.
Rummy doesn't whine.........it's one of the things I love about him. :)
What MamaL said.
You too Mia.
It also meant that we had to take the troops allocated for the Northern half all the way around out of the Mediterranean to try to unload in an already over-crowded Kuwaiti port, and an obstructed Iraqi port weeks late.
No, this was not something we were faking.
45 posted on 05/29/2004 8:29:38 AM PDT by lepton ("It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift)
This is one I could find easily. I know there are ones from before Baghdad fell.< /gloat> :)
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