PKK Peace Offer; Phase Two of US/NATO Subversion of Syria, Iraq and Turkey
Christof Lehmann (nsnbc),- Abdullah Öcalan, the imprisoned leader of the Kurdistan Workers´Party, PKK, has offered a Peace Deal and the withdrawal of all PKK troops from Turkey. With only two viable regions, which an intact PKK fighting force could withdraw to, Syria and Iraq, which both are currently being targeted by US-Saudi-Israeli backed insurgencies, and with the prospect of a planned division of Turkey into smaller states after the fall of a central Syrian government in mind, the PKK Peace Deal poses serious geo-political and geo-strategic questions.
PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan offers withdrawal of PKK troops from Tyrkish territory – Selahattin Demirtas, the co-chairman of the Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) in Turkey, has during a press conference in Diyarbakur on 22 March declared, that the armed struggle of the Kurdistan Workers´Party (PKK) has come to an effective end, and that the PKK troops would withdraw from Turkish territories if a parliamentary panel is formed to monitor the insurgents retreat.
In another statement with IMC TV late on 21 March, the BDP co-chair stated, that ninety-nine percent of the armed struggle originating from the Kurdish issue is over, and that resolving the remaining one percent is now up to the Turkish government of Prime Minister R. Tayyip Erdogan. “Our suggestion” said Demirtas, ” is that parliament should form a commission to monitor the retreat. If that occurs, the Parliament could adopt the required legislation within 15 days”.
The PKK peace offer is based on a Newruz speech of the imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, which was read publicly during Newruz celebrations in Diyarbakir on 21 March. In his speech, the imprisoned PKK leader declared a unilateral cease fire and called on the PKK troops to withdraw from Turkish territories. Öcalan indicated, that the development marks a milestone for a new era and that it heralds the building of a new Turkey.
Apparently the PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan had preparatory contacts and negotiations with members of Turkey´s parliament. In his speech, Öcalan said “I hope that the parliament will do its part in line with the historical mission on its shoulders with the same rapidness for the rapid realization of the withdrawal and to secure permanent peace”.
In several statements to Turkish and international media, Turkey´s Prime Minister R. Tayyip Erdogan expressed cautious approval of the initiative and reluctance at involving parliament into the withdrawal process.
Sidelining the parliament, Erdogan stated, that “there is a government in Turkey, and that the government will do what it is supposed to do”.
Demirtas on the other hand, insisted during his appearance on IMC TV, that involvement of the parliament was necessary, and that PKK leader Öcalan had stated during a meeting on 18 March, that a withdrawal would not be possible without a parliamentary decision.
Regardless whether a withdrawal of PKK troops from Turkish territories will take place with or without the involvement of the Turkish parliament, a withdrawal would under any circumstances warrant the question where the PKK troops would withdraw to if they were to leave Turkish territory. The only viable options for a withdrawal of a considerably sized, intact fighting force, would be respectively Syria or Iraq. Both countries are currently being targeted by US/NATO, Saudi, Qatar, and Israel backed insurgents.
PKK withdrawal from Turkish territory significantly changes regional dynamics - A withdrawal of an intact PKK fighting force implies a number of possible scenarios, all of which are inseparably related to the fact that the PKK has functioned as US/NATO and Israeli regional proxy for years, to the fact that several well informed analysts have accused Turkeys President Gul, Foreign Minister Davotoglu and to a degree Turkish Prime Minister R. Tayyip Erdogan of working on the implementation of the US Greater Middle East Project, which involves the establishment of a Kurdish Corridor and the division of Turkey and Syria into smaller, weaker, more easily manageable states. It is likely that work toward a withdrawal of PKK troops from Turkey, and their possible deployment to Iraq and Syria already began to take place during the visit of the former US CIA Director Petraeus in Istanbul in March 2012. ( 1
In an article from February 2013, the chairman of the Workers´Party Dr. Doğu Perinçek wrote about the question of the Kurdish Corridor:
“On the subject of a Kurdish Corridor in Syria, it seems that, in the current situation, the policies of the USA and Erdoğan do not coincide. On the plane returning from Germany, Erdoğan states that he is against Syria’s territorial fragmentation like Iraq. Moreover he says he has warned Barzani. He claims he said “In the case of Syria, our reaction won’t be like in Iraq”. It is obvious that this attitude is based on the stand of the Turkish Military. How long Tayyip Erdoğan will maintain this attitude towards the Kurdish Corridor remains to be seen. But there are already signs that he has been taken under pressure by Gül and Davutoğlu. These two are the leading supporters of a Kurdish Corridor in Turkey”. (2
Syria - A withdrawal of an intact PKK fighting force or at least the withdrawal of a significant part of an intact PKK fighting force to Kurdish dominated regions of Syria has the potential to significantly change the political dynamics of the ongoing Syrian national dialog.
So far, the Syrian government and the National Initiative of Syrian Kurds have successfully cooperated against any foreign interference or intervention in Syria. In February 2013 the chair of the Syrian governments ministerial committee for national dialog, Premier Minister al-Halaki, and the chairman of the National Initiative of Syrian Kurds Omar Osi and other high-ranking representatives of the Kurdish community in Syria held talks which both al-Halaki and Osi described as constructive. After the talks Omar Osi addressed the press and stated, that certain foreign powers had been badly mistaken in thinking that the Kurds would be Syria´s weak northern flank. Omar Osi and the Kurdish delegation endorsed the facilitation of the national dialog by the Syrian government and declared that the Syrian Kurds were supporting the coherence of the Syrian national state. (3
Much of the Syrian Kurds opposition against the foreign backed intervention however, is based on concerns about the possibility of being overrun by Saudi-backed Wahhabi extremists and Al-Qaeda linked mercenary corps such as the Jahbat al-Nusra. It is worth considering that there are strong Kurdish nationalist elements in Syria who would perceive an alliance with the central government in Damascus as the lesser one of two evils when comparing Damascus with medieval, backward, extremist Saudi/NATO backed Wahhabi organizations. The PKK is principally a secular organization, well organized, battle hardened, and well disciplined.
The deployment of a significant PKK fighting force, together with Turkish – US guaranties of a Kurdish state on Syrian territory and the Hatai region, which has been annexed by Turkey, could potentially change the dynamics and significantly weaken the position of the Syrian government.
Iraq – Over the recent month Iraq has experienced a Saudi backed resurgence of terrorism which is partially an artifact of the increased trafficking of weapons from Saudi-Arabia through Iraq to Syria, and partially caused by renewed Saudi attempts to destabilize the central government in Baghdad by creating instability through terrorism, by fanning a resurgence of sectarian violence, and by assassinating key Iraqi power brokers.
In December 2012 the Iranian FARS news agency reported, that Saudi-Arabia had reactivated old smuggling routes from Al-Nakhib in the western Al-Anbar province of Saudi-Arabia. The smuggling routes have been reactivated and are being used to provide Saudi-backed insurgents in Syria as well as for the renewed destabilization attempts in Iraq.(4
Referring to the renewed subversion attempts, Iraq´s Prime Minister Nouri Al-Malaki stated in December 2012, ” Qatar and Saudi Arabia which are meddling to topple the Syrian government are now doing the same meddling to topple the Iraqi regime. Their goal is overthrowing the Iraqi government. Their goal is overthrowing the Iraqi ruling system and not overthrowing me”.
In February 2013 a suicide bomber killed the Iraqi Brigadier General Awni Ali and two of his bodyguards in his home in the Kurdish dominated northern Iraq. Analysts, including the scribe, have since argued that the most likely suspect is Saudi-Arabia.(5
The increase in the level of violence, and in particular Saudi-backed sectarian violence in Iraq has prompted hundreds of thousands of Iraqis to go into the streets in early March 2013, to protest the sectarian violence and foreign interference into the country.
The deployment of the PKK troops to northern Iraq or even the deployment of a significant part of the PKK´s fighting force to northern Iraq could significantly change the political dynamics of the country, weaken the central government, further US/NATO plans of a Kurdish Corridor and beyond, and have a significant destabilizing effect on Iraq.
The primary reasons for targeting the country are Iraq´s unwillingness to sacrifice its own security to give Saudi-backed insurgents free passage en route to Syria, Iraq´s friendly policy toward Iran, and not least the fact that Iraq, together with Iran, hosts the PARS gas pipeline, which if it will be completed, would end at the Syrian, eastern Mediterranean Coast.
The lack of convergence between US – British – Qatari – Saudi and Israeli energy security requirements on one hand, those of the European Union on the other hand, and those of Russia, Iran, Iraq and Syria opposed to both of them, are most likely the primary reason for the US/NATO led war on Syria and also for the timing for the initiation of the US Greater Middle East Project. (6 - (7 (8(1-6)
Turkey - While a withdrawal of all PKK troops from Turkish territory is likely to be advertised as an end to the 30 year long insurgency and as an initiative that will increase the national security and coherence of Turkey, the withdrawal will most likely have the exact opposite effect with regard to both short term, medium term and long term developments.
Short term developments may give the impression that moving the PKK to Iraq solves the Turkish problem, but an unstable Iraq with a significant US backed PKK presence in the northern, Kurdish regions of the country is bound to backfire on Turkey. As a short term strategy it may also seem useful that large contingents of PKK fighters deploy to Syria, but an even more destabilized Syria in which Kurds are tempted to break ties with the central government in Damascus will also destabilize Turkey and result in renewed Kurdish territorial demands of a PKK which would stand stronger after a fall of Damascus.
With regard to medium term and long term developments, the deployment of the PKK, away from Turkish territories and to Iraq and / or Syria will facilitate the implementation of US plans to establish a strategic US/NATO controlled corridor from the Hatai provinve at the eastern Mediterranean, along the oil rich, soft underbelly of Russia and China to and including Pakistan´s Baluchistan province. As the retired Pakistani Major and security consultant Agha Humayun Amin said in an interview with the scribe:
“NATO is a club of wolves and Turkey is the odd wolf in NATO. Once the wolves have eaten Syria, they will eat the odd wolf Turkey. Yes, Turkey has been getting huge funds from Saudi Arabia, especially the clown Islamist Freedom and Justice Party. The clown Islamist Party is corrupting Turkey´s secularism. On the other side, Turkey is playing as NATO´s best chattel”. (9
Christof Lehmann 23.03.2013