Turkey Invades Iraq

Kurdistan has been the jewel in the crown for those who supported the invasion of Iraq. With the WMD and Al Qaeda/911 arguments turning out to be a disaster and with the situation in Baghdad or Anbar turning to FUBAR, they could always point to Kurdistan and the plight of the Kurds as a centerpiece of the righteousness of the invasion. That is, until now.

In this week’s Slate column, What’s Next for Kurdistan?, Hitch is pleading for the UN (well, the United States really) not to abandon Kurdistan, and by implication the rest of Iraq. He obviously fears that with the Democrats now the majority party in Congress and the cost of the occupation rising daily, the pressure for US forces to leave may prove irresistible. It’s an understandable concern.

Notice how Hitchens talks about the UN in Iraq? Don’t you just love how the right wing (and Hitch), love to bash the UN until it becomes a tool of convenience, in which case, the authority of the UN becomes irrefutable? Of course, if there were a modicum of credibility behind that argument, the presence of US forces in Iraq would be being decided upon by the UNSC, and not Congress or the White House.

Of course, these development presents the hawks with a paradox. When friends fight, which one becomes expendable when both are crucial allies, and how do you explain this to the public?

It is being reported that thousands of Turkish troops have invaded northern Iraq, chasing Kurdish guerillas. After all the furore about dem Islams taking over Turkey, which was being used as an excuse for a potential coup, the military leadership has been building up the propaganda for an offensive into northern Iraq (via). There has been a huge build-up of tens of thousands of forces on the border with Iraq for months, overseen by US helicopters and observers (via). The Bush administration will undoubtedly have requested that this be a quick and limited operation, for the sake of keeping it below the radar of public attention, but I’d keep an eye on this one. The Turkish military has been straining at the leash, and the Kemalists have been very critical of Erdogan for not authorising an incursion sooner. Could get very nasty.

So, US imperialism supporters the Kurds, does it?

The war party is in desperate need of talking points on this development.