A ‘Kurdish Corridor’ to be set up by the US & Israel
By Dr. Doğu Perinçek, Chairman of the Workers’ Party (Turkey).- Today, the confrontation in the Middle East is taking shape once again around the ‘Kurdish’ corridor. The ‘Kurdish corridor’ can be defined as the Barzani Kurdistan opening up to the Mediterranean. Incidentally, Telafar, the wheat store of Iraq, is also located on this ‘Kurdish’ corridor. The ‘Kurdish’ corridor means petroleum + wheat + reaching the sea. Those who are decided to establish a ‘Kurdish corridor’ are the USA and Israel. Those two are after fragmentizing Syria.
The US Policy
Mr. Hannah, an advisor to Obama, wrote that Syria was to be divided into four in the forthcoming period (New York Times). Henri Barkey, the main contributor to the establishment of Kurdistan, made a call to Turkey saying “Turkey should get used to a Kurdistan in Syria” (M. Ali Güller, Aydınlık, 3 November 2012). A fellow journalist, Deniz Hakan states that Soner Çağaptay, a member of the Washington Institute, remarked in his report dated 24 October 2012 that founding a Kurdistan in northern Syria is a “centenary opportunity” for Turkey (Aydınlık, 2 November 2012).
The policy of the Pro-American camp
A journalist, Aslı Aydıntaşbaş, well-known for advocating US policies in Turkey, defends cooperation with “Syrian Kurds” and pronounces the name PYD. She tries to explain that PYD has no organic bonds with the PKK and that this organisation sues for peace with Turkey to overthrow Assad. A very illuminating article. The heading explains the content:
“Kurds in Syria should not be opposed but embraced”
Doubtlessly, she does not advocate this policy on her own behalf. She gives voice to the tendencies of the capital most dependent on the USA and of the Fethullah Gülen group.
A split between Erdoğan and Gül on 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.
The media organs, voicing Erdoğan’s views, have started complaining about the US support to the PKK.
Yeni Şafak (daily newspaper supporting Erdoğan) criticises the mainstream daily paper, Hürriyet for covering up the PKK-Israel and PKK-USA relations. Yalçın Akdağ (journalist, MP and Erdoğan’s adviser), one of the closest persons to Erdoğan, writes that Turkey’s friends are sabotaging the attempts to leave out the PKK (The Star, 19October 2012). Again, an official of the Tayyip Erdoğan administration pointed out that the USA and the EU want PKK to be on the stage for the time being.
Barzani, manipulated by the USA, is in the service of the “Kurdish Corridor” policy. However Tayyip Erdoğan claims he has warned him. Nevertheless, Barzani tries, via FM Davutoğlu, to pull Turkey into the Kurdish “Corridor policy”. Barzani’s Minister of National Education, Sefin Dizai stated, while Davutoğlu was on his way to Erbil, that Turkey should negotiate with the PYD. Barzani is obliged to the PYD, because he cannot open such a corridor with anyone else. On the other hand, Talabani leaves Barzani in the Kurdish Corridor alone. Furthermore he has had talks with Noshirvan Mustapha, Barzani’s opponent who received 24 % of the votes (Rafet Ballı, Aydınlık, 20 October 2012).
The Policy of PKK/BDP
It seems that after the US and Israel, it is the PKK who is the most enthusiastic about the Kurdish Corridor. PKK, PYD and Barzani are all in cooperation. However, Barzani cannot be as daring as the PKK because he is surrounded by Turkey, Iraq, Talabani and Noshirvan Mustapha. Another reason is that it is the PKK and not Barzani who has more authority in northern Syria.
Gülten Kışanak the co-chairman of the Kurdish legal party, BDP (Barış ve Demokrasi Partisi – Peace and Democracy Party) after her visit to the USA towards the end of April, summarised the US attitude towards the PKK thus: “The USA has understood the Kurdish question very well. (…) They state that the PKK has an important place in the Kurdish question and that if the Kurdish question is to be resolved, the PKK has to be included in it as well.”
A Co-president of BDP, who does not hide that the BDP is the legal face of the PKK, emphasized that they had requested a role to play in the issue from the USA (Radikal and Cumhuriyet, 3 May 2012). Selahattin Demirtaş, one of the co-presidents of BDP, and Osman Baydemir , the Mayor of Diyarbakır stated that that their “heart beat” for the division of Syria and the founding of an autonomous Kurdistan in Syria the capital of which was going to be Kamışlı. (Milliyet, 28 July 2012; Sözcü, 29 July 2012). Aysel Tuğluk, a co-president of the PKK controlled Democratic Society Congress bluntly defends that Assad will leave office and that Syria will be fragmentized. She stated that a plan comprising a “Kurdish Corridor from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean” was being discussed in Washington a month ago (, 23 September 2012).
The PKK counts on the subversion of the Assad regime in Syria. That was openly mentioned by Murat Karayılan with the emphasis of “sooner or later, definitely” (Vatan, 14 October 2012).
The policy of PYD
Even though PYD declares that it has no organic ties with the PKK; it is PKK’s arm in Syria. It openly announces its goal of liberating and defending the Kurdish dominated cities in northern Syria like Afrin, Kamışlı and Kobani from the BAATH regime (Milliyet, 13 October 2012).
PYD is an indispensable tool of the Kurdish Corridor. While Öcalan was in Syria, the Syrian Kurds were entirely in the control of the Syrian Intelligence Service. Öcalan did not deny his relations with the Syrian secret services. These relations had an important function to hold the Syrian Kurds under the control of the BAATH regime.
But 14 years have passed since 1998. What is more, the aim of PYD, on the lookout for the circumstances when the Assad regime is weakened, is obvious. If the Assad regime collapses, will the Syrian secret service remain?
It should not be forgotten that the project to establish a Kurdish Corridor depends on the goal of overthrowing the BAATH administration and the only domestic power to establish this corridor in northern Syria is the PYD.
The policies of the opposition in Syria
The Syrian opposition is a US tool and it is conducting an armed struggle with the support of the USA. The struggle against the BAATH administration aims at dividing Syria according to the US plan. However, the Syrian opposition defends the unity of Syria and opposes the forming of the Kurdish Corridor, though objectively, they also serve the US plans.
It should not be forgotten that the government in Iraq which was in collaboration with the US, has now moved away from the US control, because they do not accept the fragmentation of Iraq. The same is also a possible reason for the liquidation of the Syrian National Council by the USA.
The policy of the National Forces in Turkey
The National Forces getting stronger and actively taking part on the political agenda of Turkey recently is strictly against the fragmentation of Syria. They defend an alliance between Turkey, Syria, Iraq and Iran as well as embracing the Kurds in the region. This alliance, neutralizing a US intervention, is the creative power of independence and peace in the region.
The opposing fronts in the Kurdish corridor
After having taken a look at the policies of different forces and organizations individually, we can now determine the lining up on the Kurdish Corridor axis.
Those In favour of the Kurdish Corridor
- The President Gül and FM Davutoğlu from the Justice and Development Party (AKP)
- Prime Minister Tayyip Erdoğan from the Justice and Development Party (AKP) (unstable)
Syrian Opposition (unstable)
Free Syrian Army / Plunderers
Saudi Arabia / Qatar
Resisting against the Kurdish Corridor
- National Forces of Turkey (Those participating in the series of anti-AKP demonstrations)
People’s Republic of China
Can a Kurdish Corridor be established?
The establishing of a Kurdish Corridor by the USA and Israel is essential for the survival of the Puppet State in northern Iraq. If it has no reach to the sea and if Turkey does not safeguard it, The Barzani Kurdistan cannot survive.
However, the establishing of a Kurdish Corridor, is, at the same time, a critical phase in making Diyarbakır the centre of a second Israel. Doubtlessly, the Turkish Armed Forces know this. Tayyip Erdoğan, at present, is warning Barzani with the red line of the Turkish Armed Forces in mind.
But can he go on resisting the US with this policy? Up to the present, we have seen that red lines have been abandoned without a single gunshot.
However, two new factors have come up:
Firstly, there is a strong National consciousness which showed itself in a series of demonstrations and thus, now the red lines of Turkey are being voiced by masses. Everyone has to take this great power into consideration.
Secondly, the resistance of Syria turned out to be successful. The USA is going downhill. Asia is growing stronger and has reached a position enabling it to determine the developments.
Dr.Doğu Perinçek is the Chairman of the Workers’ Party (Turkey). The article was first published in Doğu Perinçek’s column in the daily newspaper Aydınlık (Clarity) on 7 November 2012.
The volatility of Gas, Geo-Politics and the Greater Middle East. An Interview with Major Agha H. Amin