[Marxism] Fwd: Swans Commentary - Special Iraq - "The Kurdish Pawn, " by Louis Proyect

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Sep 29 11:45:25 MDT 2016


In a November 25, 2003 New York Times Op-Ed piece, Leslie Gelb proposed 
that Iraq be divided into three distinct states, with the Kurds being 
awarded the oil-rich north. With his background as a Times editor and 
president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations, we must assume 
that this proposal has some backing in the foreign policy establishment.

What should the attitude of radicals be toward an independent Kurdish 
state? For over twenty years, this cause has been embraced by many on 
the left. For Christopher Hitchens, who began lurching rightward during 
wars with Iraq and Yugoslavia, the Kurdish and Kosovar causes became 
litmus tests for radicals. When successive US administrations appeared 
to him more zealous in taking up their cause, he switched horses.

On the other hand, Noam Chomsky has been able to remain a principled and 
effective opponent of US imperialism while maintaining a commitment to 
Kurdish rights, including self-determination.

Unfortunately, much of the discourse around this beleaguered people has 
tended to remain within the framework of human rights and has lacked a 
class analysis. The purpose of this article is to take a hard look at 
the Kurdish national struggle and place it into the larger context of 
the overall struggle against imperialism. For activists who are facing 
maneuvers of the kind put forward by the Leslie Gelbs of the world, 
getting up to speed on these questions is an urgent task.

full: http://www.swans.com/library/art10/iraq/proyect.html



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