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[casi] (no subject)

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An important question on the Middle-East.

In the West, The plight of the Palestinians is often compared to that of the Kurds. There are 
approximatly 4 million stateless Palestinians and approximatly 20 million Kurds in the Middle-East 
( I am well aware that some people put much higher figures on these numbers). I have also read 
reports such as that the Turkish Army has destroyed over 2000 Kurdish villages and invaded Northern 
Iraq/Kurdistan without any reprimand from the International community. In addition, according to 
Amnesty International, Turkish M.P.s have been imprisoned simply for advocating automony for the 
Kurds. I wonder if anyone noticed a recent article I found in the Guardian by Richard Norton-Taylor 
on Friday August 13, 1999. It dealt with the UN Security Council sanctions on Iraq, in partcular, 
the effect on child mortality. Much of it was familiar but one section caught my attention, the 
section dealing with Northern Iraq, what many people call Kurdistan.

"Child deaths in Iraq have increased dramatically in government controlled areas but have fallen in 
the autonomous, largely Kurdish, region in the north, the United Nations children's agency Unicef 
reported yesterday. "

It goes onto state

"In central and southern Iraq there were 56 deaths of children under 5 per 1,000 live births in 
1984-89 and 131 per thousand in 1994-1999. Unicef said this puts rate in most of Iraq on a par with 
rates in Haiti and Pakistan.

In the north, child mortality fell from 90 deaths per 1,000 live births during the years 1989-94 to 
72 deaths per 1,000 live births between 1994 and 1999. "

These findings are roughly supported by Michael Rubin in an article published in the Kurdistan 
Observer, 13th June and posted to this newsgroup on 17th June 2001.

To this I have one very important question to add. Why has the West never supported the creation of 
a genuine Kurdish homeland? I realise that the Modern Middle-East was basically created by the 
victorious allied powers at the end of World War One. The Allied powers, basically Britain and 
France, dismembered the Ottoman Empire and created the modern states and borders that we know 
today. The chance to create a Kurdish state was lost; why? I know that Western foreign policy is 
often motivated by simple self-interest but occasionally it can actually be idealistic. People in 
the West often accuse the Arab-Islamic countries of blatant double-standards i.e. supporting the 
struggle of the Palestinians and ignoring the plight of the Kurds. It seems to me that we in the 
West also have some answering to do. Why have we never supported the creation of a genuine Kurdish 
 Thank you


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