Kurdistan needs accountability

By Michael Rubin:

On December 2, rioters allegedly stirred up by preachers at Friday prayers rampaged through Zakho, destroying a controversial massage parlor before moving on to torch several liquor shops and hotels. In retaliation, a mob of Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) activists attacked the local office of the Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) and KIU media offices in nearby Duhok and Semel.  There is only one problem, a KIU activist explains to me: While the KIU used to have two imams in Zakho, they were fired a long time ago by the government.  The KDP regulates the mosques and appoints the preachers. Ismael Osman, the cleric who called for worshippers to attack the massage parlor told Hawlati that he hates the KIU and belongs to the KDP.

Regional President Masud Barzani condemned the violence and promised that a special committee would investigate the incident. Alas, Barzani appointing a committee to investigate any outrage against democracy and security in which the perpetrators come from his own party is akin to the fox taking charge of an investigation into a break-in at a hen house, or Syrian President Bashar al-Assad promising to investigate attacks against protestors on the part of his own security forces. Barzani may be sincere, but after so many attacks allegedly perpetrated with such seeming impunity by his own party – and even in some cases his own immediate family – against opposition political parties and independent journalists, Barzani has forfeited any credibility on issues of justice and human rights.

The list of unresolved investigations and unpunished attacks against political opponents in Kurdistan is growing. In October 2005, security forces detained dissident writer and Austrian citizen Kamal Sayid Qadir in Erbil. After a one-hour trial, a party-controlled court sentenced Kamal to 30 years in prison. Whether or not Dr. Kamal’s journalism was professional, it was clear that the judicial process was not. To his credit, it was Qubad Talabani, the son of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, who first brought the case to the attention of people in Washington, DC, perhaps because the abuse was so blatant and the Kurdish representative realized more than those on Sar-e Rash the damage it could do to the region’s image abroad. While human rights abuses predated the case, it was the KDP’s overreaction to it and the involvement of Barzani family members in some of the worst alleged abuses that first internationalized concern about the human rights situation in Kurdistan.

Two months after Kamal’s detention, KDP activists and security forces stormed the KIU headquarters in Duhok ahead of elections, summarily executing its local leader. The incident was discussed at the White House, not only among lower aides, but directly with President Bush and Vice President Cheney. Alas, while Barzani obsesses about image and whether or not he receives the respect he believe he deserves when he travels abroad, it is often his own decision to engage in the worst autocratic excesses which soil international attitudes toward him and his sons, rather than any imagined slight by protocol officers who do not book him a fancy enough suite or meet him in a posh enough parlor.

Perhaps because Barzani believed he could, literally, get away with murder, Kurdistan soon became a very dangerous place for journalists, or at least those who worked for newspapers or magazines which were independent, and not simply political party public relations arms. In 2008, Soran Mama Hama, a reporter for the Kurdish-language magazine Lvin was shot in his home in Kirkuk after reportedly investigating a story involving local and party official culpability in a prostitution ring.  The story was relevant, and not simply partisan animosity. The tendency of Kurdish security agencies to use prostitutes to entrap foreign officials was well-known to Americans serving in the region, and indeed was used to blackmail at least one American colonel stationed in Erbil. Soran’s killing remains unresolved, and there is no evidence that Kurdish authorities ever undertook any serious investigation. Najmaldin Karim, the new governor of Kirkuk, has shown no interest in pursuing the case.

Soran’s death was followed two years later by the kidnapping and execution of Sardasht Osman, apparently in retaliation for a sharply satirical poem he had written regarding the enrichment of the Barzani family. Sardasht’s murder again made international headlines in a manner which Kurdish officials should have been able to predict. While the Kurdistan Regional Government released the results of its investigation and accused Sardasht of terror connections, the government’s accusations were neither backed by any evidence nor did they address how terrorists could kidnap a student in broad daylight from a university in the middle of Erbil, and spirit him unmolested through multiple KDP-run checkpoints.

Had the Kurdish authorities learned that they could not kill without consequence, the tragedy of this past February would have been avoided. When a small group of protestors threw stones at the local KDP headquarters in Sulaymani, a gunman from inside the building opened fire indiscriminately on the crowd, killing a teenage boy. Over subsequent weeks, violence spread, Kurdish forces killed more than a dozen and wounded several hundred. In any democratic society, the KDP gunmen would be in prison for manslaughter if not murder. An honorable prime minister would not remain in office after such outrage but, in Kurdistan, tenure in office can simply be too lucrative to abandon, even if it means exposing reformist rhetoric to be insincere.

Whether the KIU is too conservative or even radical for most Kurds’ tastes or those of Western governments should be completely irrelevant to the violence in Zakho which, when it comes to the KDP reprisal, bears all the hallmarks of the tail wagging the dog. Barzani may have condemned the attack, but if he is serious about its unacceptability, there are several steps he can initiate immediately.

The first step would be to fire the interior minister who has seen most of the attacks occur on his watch. If the KDP is serious about its investigation into Sardasht Osman’s murder, then Karim Sinjari displayed gross incompetence for allowing terrorists to operate in the heart of Erbil. At the same time, if the investigation was a farce, then the interior minister was simply providing cover for lawlessness which, in a democratic society, it should be his job to prevent regardless of the perpetrator’s party or family connection.

The second step would be to dismiss the leadership of the KDP’s security service. That the head of the Kurdistan-Iraq Regional Security Protection Agency happens to be his eldest son and heir apparent should be irrelevant. After all, when Iraqi President Jalal Talabani’s son made some very poor decisions with regard to the PUK’s security arm, his parents effectively exiled him to Europe.  That might not be justice, but it was acknowledgement that a crime had occurred.

Lastly, while Barzani is right to promise an investigation, any such inquiry should be truly independent. Here, it may be time for Barzani to call upon the international community—diplomats, non-Kurdish and non-Iraqi civil society representatives, and academics—who are not invested in any way in Kurdish society, to handle the investigation. Barzani could simply promise to offer his full support, grant full access to any party members, and agree in advance to uphold its recommendations. Indeed, had Barzani accepted such a model when trouble began in 2005, many innocent lives may have been spared and Kurdistan would have advanced much further to fulfilling its quest for democracy and rule-of-law.

61 Responses to Kurdistan needs accountability
  1. haval
    December 4, 2011 | 22:19

    we should always remember who are the Barzani family.the family responsible for the disaster of 1975 (Ashbatal)then for killing and massacaring Iranian and Iraqi peshmargers between 1975 to 1981.Barzani family are carried out the atrocity of 1996 taken Saddams army to Erbil and hundreds of opposition forces has been killed and destroyed .Trotsky said :you may not be interested in war ,but war is interested in you .This is true for Barzani family ,they cannot suvive without the conflict.

  2. Kuvan Bamarny
    December 5, 2011 | 01:51

    Yes indeed kurdistan needs accountiblty so badly. Anybody who breaks the law shoould be held accountable regardless of who he is or how powerful , important or rich he/she is and thats how law works in a free justful,democratic and civilazed society ,therfore that applies to the head of the government and judges and securty forces too.

  3. Baqi Barzani
    December 5, 2011 | 03:25

    Kurdistan needs accountability. Dr. Rubin necessitates responsibility.

  4. InmanHassanbinSoba
    December 5, 2011 | 04:16

    And if asked at prayers for a chemical weapons to be used … that’s ok of course. Welcome to the new Kurdistan… hatred through religion…making people feel empowered without a better life.

  5. freedom for kurdish
    December 5, 2011 | 16:41

    sooooooooooooo bad barzani not good

  6. Baqi Barzani
    December 5, 2011 | 16:48

    To: Freedom for Kurdish

    I did not know we have both good and bad Barzanis. Can you tell me something about the good ones? HAHAHA

  7. Hogr
    December 5, 2011 | 19:57

    Mustafa Barzani and the family
    all the happen and terrorist Kurdistan Barzani are the families
    old thing
    Barzani family need (jash)

  8. dangi azadi
    December 5, 2011 | 20:07

    thank you DR Michael Rubin

  9. goran barwary
    December 6, 2011 | 01:05

    Masud barzany is more danger than any other terrorist groups,, this is another game,, he made in Zako,,because he knows his 50 years family power will end soon,, he just want to show westren conutries some komedia,to say the cristians are in danger, if masuds barzanys power ended,,

    December 6, 2011 | 01:33

    we are not free because masud barzani @ KDP very dangerous thae like big mafia in kurdistan.thanks

  11. Halmet
    December 6, 2011 | 01:58

    Kak Michael, accountability doesn’t exist in the Kurdish dictionary. Yes, accountability doesn’t exist in Iraqi Kurdish society.

    Here are two of my observations of the recent incident in Badinan.

    First scenario, since 90s the KIU has been accepting money from gulf countries, mainly UAE, under some Charity and distributing it among Kurdish children and orphans in Kurdistan. In return, those children’s and/or orphans’ mothers, families and relatives had to participate in major KIU’s events and attend mosques on a regular basis. As a result, KUI had recruited many and produced many followers. If you ask any individual in Kurdistan about KIU’s assistance, he/she enthusiastically will tell you about the generosity of KIU. Unlike Sulemania, the Badinan area relatively is more conservative and none of other secular parties in the past three decades have gained much, nor succeeded in their efforts in recruiting. However, due to the conservativeness of the area, KIUs, under the umbrella of being modern Muslim, which they are, has succeeded and gained more power in the area and can be a major threat to KDP in it’s mainly traditional stronghold. Finally, KDP realized that this threat needs to be dealt with. In 70s 80s and 90s, KDP had always been able to brainwash the general population in the area that the Sorani leaderships prejudice and will destroy your dialect if they have full power in Badinan area and KDP has been successful in its efforts in brainwashing people until this day. However, in the current situation, KDP can’t go against the grain to humiliate Islam nor can accuse KIU for assisting the Kurdish families. Instead, KDP created Barzani Charity Foundation and took over that fund from Gulf countries to its Foundation. In other words, this Barzani Charity from now on will distribute the money, which means that KDP will use the fund in its interest, recruit families and probably distribute Barzani’s picture just like Saddam used to do it in allotting his pictures among the Iraqis and called “father Saddam.”
    who’s at fault? you may remember the 90s fight betwee KDP and PUK over Ibrahim Khalil and power. very much the same fight.

    Second scenario is between the Barzani sons themselves and noticeably between Nechyrwan and Masrour. We all know that Necyr wanted to establish a new coalition government which includes Gorran, KIU and other opposition parties. In addition, Nechyr demanded more power over security forces in Kurdistan mainly (Peshmarge and Assaysh). This alone created a phobia among Parastin (Protection) led by Masrour Barzani. The rivalry between Nechyr and Masrour is known to every Kurd and its common practice among the sons and relatives of monarch, kings, Amir and tribal leaders throughout the history and these two individuals are not exceptional to that practice. First, Masrour wanted to undermine Nechyr’s plan in a new coalition government, and second, find a way not to lose that power in KDP territory. By creating a chaotic environment, Masrour gains power from two dimensions. First, cutting the opposition parties from participating in the new government and this alone castrates Nechyr’s broader plan for power sharing. In fact, Masrour already succeeded in his plan because the opposition parties already announced to not participate in future meeting with KDP (Hawlati). Second, sharing power means losing his grip over KDP controlled territories, which I believe he would sacrifice for that not to happen. Gadhafi’s son, when captured on the border of I think Nigeria, was really thinking and serious about regrouping his forces and comeback to the power one day. Does any normal human being with a slight knowledge in Masrour and in Kurdish politics think that Masrous wants to share his power with anyone?
    KDP already has been succeeded in publicizing its agenda of portraying the incident as a “religious rivalry” in international community but not domestically. This incident has nothing to do with religious contention because those thugs didn’t attack Church, Christians nor Yezide’s or their Mosques. In fact, the owners of those burned shops are KDP officials in the area (Lvinpress.com). However, KDP is trying to portrait this incident as a religious animosity and made western officials mainly the US consulate in Erbil to denounce the incident in that context (Awene.com)(Hawler.in), but the consulate failed to condemn the burning of KIU offices in its announcement.

    • jangy
      December 6, 2011 | 14:41

      Dear Halmet,

      In your opinion you have been largely infulenced by what the authory tells people about KIU. I was one of those orphans, my father had been killed by PUK. They taught me the holy quran but never asked me to go to their political offices, they never asked me to be their member, they never asked my family to follow them. when I became 18, they told me that I was not any more an orphan and so they wouldn’t continue the charity.. they told the same thing to my friend who said he wished to be told to join them again even if there were no charity for him… they did not ask us to stay with them, or join them… moreover, they knew that my mother got remarried with somebody who used to be a political prisoner of PUK, my mother has affiliation to PUK too. So, I speak from my personal experience with KIU, they are purer than some interpretations by people who know little about them.

      • دڵشاد خۆشناو
        December 6, 2011 | 17:49

        kak jangy,

        I wouldn’t allow myself to say “you are not telling a true story” because I was simply not there BUT
        that doesn’t prove anything!

        The whole supporter basis of “Hisbullah in Lebanon” is working on this principle.
        Provide charity among poor people who are neglected by the government and “those above” and you have a loyal basis which would go a long way and sacrifice themselves for your organization.

        Of course they don’t have say it explicitly:
        “become our member”.

        Having received money from them for years in such a volatile situation creates a great deal of gratitude and idealization so that there is no need to say anything.
        It just happens because you are psychologically ripe for it.

        There is also a lot of ideological brain washing involved, just look at Hamas in Gaza for example.

        Helping out in misery is a noble thing but utilizing it to create supporters of an organization to misuse them later is simply evil.

    • Halabja
      December 6, 2011 | 14:54

      Very nice analysis!Thanks

  12. Kurdishboy
    December 6, 2011 | 06:52

    Goran killed PUK by halving it. Goran sold KIU to PDK. KDP kiiled bothr KIU and weakened Goran. KDP won in this battle of politics.

    • Ari
      December 6, 2011 | 20:23

      You must be a foolish guy who thinks like that !

  13. kawa
    December 6, 2011 | 07:46

    Barzani like all other dictators around the world and throughout history abides by rule of law, when has no power on literally. These are his recent crimes, he has committed many more in the past years and decades, in 1994 his party executed all PUK members who were taken prisoner …….etc

  14. reykar
    December 6, 2011 | 08:17

    masud barzani is a terorist and he is criminal

  15. Redar
    December 6, 2011 | 08:44

    The first thing I must say here is I dont trust any americans, with the writer here himself. They destroyed Iraq, including Kurdistan, now they tell us who is good and who is bad…Baezani and Talabani and their families are both the same **** from different places. What we need is a change, a whole change, and the first thing we need to do for that is to put out all the foriegn hands on our land.

  16. Aso Azadi
    December 6, 2011 | 10:15

    A plague on both their houses.

    Shame on the KIU mob for acting like Wahhabi barbarians.

    And shame on the KDP for its disproportionate and criminal reprisals.

  17. Soran
    December 6, 2011 | 10:32

    The KDP does not seem to understand that being in Governement carries moral and ethical responsibility and you can not act like thugs on the street. The two party of Kurdistan have built a militia force totalling 100000,the szie of the British army.Of course their argument this force is required as we are surrounded by enemeies and yet we have not seen this force used once over the past few years against our enemenies. Simply it has become an oppresion tool against peaceful demonstrators on the street. I see this utter failure from us, the Kurds, to build a civil society that respects human lives and right .In any other part of todays world all our politican would have saved the entire of their lives behind bars for their shameful abuses of human rights.

  18. Hamma Mirwaisi
    December 6, 2011 | 10:35

    President Obama’s mismanagement in Middle East
    The US Government mismanagement of Iraq war cannot be blamed on President Obama’s administration alone. President Bush’s administration created monster like Nouri al-Maliki, Iyad Allawi, Massoud Barzani, Jalal Talabani and thousands of others like them to replace Saddam Hussein administration.
    Iraq liberation becomes nightmare for Iraqi people.
    President Obama come along without any plan to solve internal or external problem for the USA. Internally he was not able to solve economic problem for people in the USA. Externally he is on run in Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan or soon entire Middle East.
    The US Government are hopeless Government in the USA and overseas.
    Kurdish people are the only people to be an ally of the USA after Israel. The Obama administration supported two corrupt families in Kurdistan and he is trying to sell Kurds to Turkey, what kind of foreign policy is this. It is the same policy of President Nixon’s 1974 in Asia. Run, Run out from the region.
    The US administration are not capable to punish the US citizen whom are involved in corruption with two small dictators in Kurdistan namely Massoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani of KRG.
    Hamma Mirwaisi
    Member of the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK),
    Representative of KNK in America
    And the author of the book, “Return of the Medes”.

  19. kader scherko
    December 6, 2011 | 10:45

    Sie sind echt gut gechribn tauzid mal beser als von barzani und talabani für kurdicher volk dankchen By Michael Rubin.

  20. Halabja
    December 6, 2011 | 13:25

    Thank you Michael! You really know the reality of Kurdistan better than anyone else. However you miss an importnat point. When KDP knew that his members actions (storming and burning KIU offices) becomes a huge embarrassment, Barzani and other KDP senior officials used the poor Christians and Yazidis to cover their shameful acts. Barzani claimed that the attack was directed at Christians and Yazidis and he is ready to fight for them. Very unfortunately, US consulate in Erbil was deluded by KDP PR and in her statesmen, instead condemning KDP’s barbaric act, it condemned people who cause chaos in the region.

  21. Halabja
    December 6, 2011 | 13:29

    Michael, please see this new video of the KDP Mulla (cleric) who is inside a KDP police/Asaish car outside the mosque, surrounded by some KDP officials in Zakho, preaching people and motivate them. This proves %100 that KDP was behind the attack on the liquor stores and wanted to use that to attack KIU.


  22. دڵشاد خۆشناو
    December 6, 2011 | 13:54

    Michael Rubin is back again to his preferred hobby as it seems.
    This reminds me of the arabic saying which goes like this:

    “حلیمە عادت الی عادتها القدیمە”

    It seems to be very fashionable nowadays to engage in “Barzanis bashing”.

    Rubin’s article contains so many untrue statements and assumptions without any proof but I don’t want to waste this space to get into that.
    If anyone is interested in such a discussion we might do that at another place.

    One can ignore all those (Barzanis)haters who have commented on this page because hatred is not only destructive but it prevents any meaningful and objective discussion.

    But one thing one can’t ignore is the sincere worry of people (Kurdistanis and others) as to what is happening there and trying to get to the bottom of the matters because if we really care about Kurdistan we must try to find out the truth and promote it everywhere.

    Just to start with:
    we all had to read this in the kurdish media yesterday:

    “Salahaddin Behaaddin, the head of the Islamic YekGirtu, arrived in Cairo for talks due to an invitation by the Egyptian Muslim Brothers!”.

    If someone knows anything about Kurdistan, Islamists and the Middle East this should let all the alarm bells ring and it is telling the whole story.

    The Islamic Yekgirtu and Komala have been funded and still are by such democratic and kurds-friendly countries like Saudi Arabia, Iran and AKP Turkey.
    Those distinguished Kurds haters and oppressors.
    It is self explanatory to know what the agenda of those Islamic parties are and what they are really after, which is serving the ineterests of teh Saudis, Turks and Iranians.

    For those who have monitored the situation in Kurdistan, it is obvious that the far too fast change in the kurdish society and the import of a western life style that is hardly compatible with the culture of the majority of our people, has created so much tension among the people so that a relatively minor conflict could lead to an outburst of violence and a grave crisis, which is exactly what Iran, Turkey and the Arabs are after for so many years.

    It is almost irrelevant whom the Mullah belonged to.
    The decisive moment is that there is such huge tension in the society and the Islamic parties have been trying to utilize that to mobilize people against the KRG.

    It’s very interesting that Gorran supporters, who generally regard themselves as secular and open for a western styled living, have been the allies of those Islamic parties who usually hate those ladies with light clothing and people who tend to drink alcohol and care little about duties such as praying etc.
    So paying attention to what consequences the own policies have doesn’t seem to count much with most kurdish parties, even the more modern ones like Gorran.

    So I hope that my kurdish fellows, at least the intelligent ones, stop short of going with the simplistic explanations that some provide and stay away of calling names, attacking the Barzanis as the cause of all evil.

    Those who really understand Kurdistan know that it is not that simple.

    We should try to find out the truth and stop jumping on the wagon and repeat allegation without any proof.

    I have a very simple question for the so called independent kurdish media, such as Hawlati, Awene etc.:

    “why don’t you juts do your homework and go to Zaxo and Dihok and find out the facts by asking eye witnesses, reconstructing the flow of events?”

    It has nothing to do with Journalism, if a newspaper writes down what another has just alleged about Zaxo from their offfices in Slemani and Hawler from big distance without having investigated the facts at the scene of the events?

    Most Kurds tend to make the fire bigger instead of trying to find out the truth, put the facts on the table for everyone to judge by themselves, and appealing to people for reasoning and calm because it is a dangerous playing with the fire if we allow “the islamic driven mob” to rule the streets.

    Slaw u rez
    Dilshad Xoshnaw

    • oramary
      December 6, 2011 | 17:17

      thanks kak delshad for your clear anlayse, after reading most of the comment i felt really deppressed, with the fact that we as kurd can hate each other so much, after reading yours that i felt a bit opptomestic that there are people like you, who looking at the other side of the picture, and really care about kurdistan. i am not trying to defend any party or any one, what was happend in badinan area was shameful,either burning the shops or yekgertos offices, and should not happend ever again. and also i would like to say that i have read mr robin articles in many occations, and in his writtings hatred toward barzani family is quite obovuis, and he is using every opportunity to bash barzani family. i just want to tell mr robin if he really cares about the kurds why doesnt he write something about the suffering of the kurds in turkey, or iran

      • دڵشاد خۆشناو
        December 6, 2011 | 18:50

        kak oramary,

        thank you for your kind words. One of the reasons why I take the pain of participating in such painstaking discussions is to show that not all Kurds are such self haters and think that you can explain the complex kurdish situation in 5 sentences, of which 4 are reserved for bad mouthed words..

        The other issue is Michael Rubin:

        you are right.. if you just google a little bit you would see the 2 most important reasons of Rubin’s “rampage” on the Barzanis..
        and those reasons are:

        1- he lived and worked in Kurdistan for a long time..
        and as it seems he is in war with Masrour Barzani because apparently he threw him out of Kurdistan instead of awarding him a fat contract as an advisor.

        2- the second point is what you mentioned:
        why isn’t he writing such articles about the plight of the Kurds in Turkey?
        To mention one of his activities:
        he worked for the US defense department and he is related to those hawkish US circles who are very good friends and supporters of the turkish army and generals.
        He is a long year supporter of the turkish military complex and strong a critic of AKP/Erdogan not because they are so brutal to Kurds and democratic groups in Turkey, but because they are the opponents of the turkish generals.

        So he is completely anti-Barzanis.

        As usual Kurds think:
        “my enemy’s enemy is my friend”.

        So some Kurds jubiliate when he bashes the Barzanis but they don’t undertsand it is not just bashing Barzanis, it’s about bashing and hitting Kurdistan as well.

        BUT this fits very well with the self-hatred which Kurds have.
        It’s well known that “Jews are self-haters” but it seems that they haven’t seen Kurds yet!

        Slaw u rez

    • Soran
      December 6, 2011 | 21:14

      Kaka Dilshad,
      What Mr Rubin is saying is hurtful but sadly true. Being secular does not mean watch other people’s human rights violated and Gorran are right in supporting the KIU .Can you or perhaps Mr Barzani tell us why his party can not win any any election zone where his militia men or his secret service(parasten) do not rule. Here is a scarey scenario, very soon the KDP will be reclaiming the position of the prime miniter from the PUK.Then you will have a state where the presindet ,the PM and the head of sectet service are the father ,the son and the nephew .If this not a recipe for dicatorship,what is it then?.Ironically ,between the 3 of them they hardly hold a degree.I guess you will say the result of elction.I agree but we all know how elections are held in Kurdistan,it is just making mockery of democracy.Finally I firmly beleive that the grassroots of the KDP have a lot to answer for what their party has come to.

      • دڵشاد خۆشناو
        December 6, 2011 | 23:32

        Kak Soran,

        defending others’ human rights is an honorable thing.
        The point is, defending rights is one thing and building an alliance with 2 parties who want to introduce political Islam in Kurdistan is a completely another issue.

        It’s weird that many contributors on this page think that I am somehow affiliated with the PDK or KRG.
        I have absolutely nothing to do with both of them but it seems that Kurds are used to being 100% pro or contra something.
        They have difficulties to imagine that there is the wide range of reality between those 2 poles.

        I can’t answer your questions for the PDK. You have to ask them yourself.
        All what I am trying to say is that this opportunity, since 1991, is the greatest one that Kurds had since centuries.
        We simply can’t afford destroying this opportunity.
        We have to be careful and not destroy during our fighting what we are trying to defend which is Kurdistan.

        Regarding the Zaxo events nobody has (all) the facts. No independent media has a complete covering of the events and the PDK/YekGirtu media can’t be regarded as sources because they are the invloved parties.
        All what remains is pure speculation which means no hard facts.

        And speculation is just no basis to judge such an important matter which could lead to more heating-up the situation and more destruction in Kurdistan no matter who was guilty.

        We have to wait until all facts are confirmed by reliable third parties before we jump to any conclusions.

        Slaw u rez

  23. Hamma Mirwaisi
    December 6, 2011 | 15:28

    Corrupt people in Kurdistan are afraid now
    From the comment above you can see who the servants of Barzani and Talabani families are. The Kurdish people know thieves of Kurdistan. And they know that Barzani and Talabani are not alone in corruption. There are many traitors among Kurdish people whom are serving Barzani and Talabani families and there are many American, Europeans and Israeli’s whom are involved in corruption too.
    The Kurdish people courts are going to punish all those involved in corruption in Kurdistan. Those who are running to Europe and America will be arrested and send back to Kurdistan so they can face court of laws.
    Qubad be ready, you cannot hide here in the USA forever, the US Government could not protect Shah of Iran, they cannot protect you either when time is coming soon, God willing.
    It is not Dr. Rubin’s fault it is Barzani and Talabani families corruption problem catching up with them finally.
    Hamma Mirwaisi
    Member of the Kurdistan National Congress (KNK),
    Representative of KNK in America
    And the author of the book, “Return of the Medes”.

    • دڵشاد خۆشناو
      December 6, 2011 | 18:23

      If you are indeed the Representative of KNK in America then you should really be more balanced and careful about your judgements.

      What do you know about me to judge me as “corrupt and servants of the Barzani and Talabani families”?
      One shouldn’t jump to any conclusions on no basis, specially when making such grave accusations and definitely not when you are not an ordinary citizen but a Representative of KNK in America, which I actually very much respect.

      By the way, you really don’t have to repeat your complete signitaure “Representative of KNK in America ….”
      in every comment you make!

      And besides I must say I am upset that in your book you are using terminology such as “Aryans” etc. which I think is just not acceptable to argue with such racial and nazi-like vocabulary and mindset.

      • Hamma Mirwaisi
        December 7, 2011 | 20:26

        Dilshad Xoshnaw
        Xoshnaw tribe is one of the Nobel tribe of Kurdistan. I do not believe that any Nobel Xoshnaw will support Barzani tribe while Barzani tribe is raping the people in Xoshnaw region.
        Dr. Rubin is American Jews and I argue with the Jewish scholars, Greek scholars and others in my book with regard of my Aryan heritage. I do not need you to teach me about my Aryan origin, which people like Barzani and Talabani with many faces are denying to be Aryan Kurds and wants to rule Aryan Kurds forever. To say I am Aryan is not like Nazi-like vocabulary, Nazi was political party’s with ideologies used Aryan Nation name just like Islamic political parties are using Islamic religion for politics. Is Islamic religion are racist now because it is used for politics. Aryan is the nation with 12,000 years civilization. I am proud with my Aryan heritage and culture. I am working hard to revive old Aryan civilization.
        Do not worry for me and what I wrote in my book; I can answer others for my writing.
        I write truth for what happened to Medes (Kurds) in last 2500 years.
        We will defeat Barzani and Talabani soon. I am an independent member of KNK, I do not believe in political parties in Kurdistan. I work only for Kurdish people whom are part of Aryan Nation.
        With regard to all those who love Kurdish people and shame for those Kurds whom sold themselves to make money on behave of Kurdish people suffering.

  24. kochar
    December 6, 2011 | 16:12

    this is jus a quick reply to dilshad’s comment; can you name one independent newspaper in the KDP controlled zone? and by the way, I think you are pretty nieve to even think that people in BAHDINAN can freely express their views in their privet meetings let alone to the independent media.

    • دڵشاد خۆشناو
      December 6, 2011 | 17:29


      you are misunderstanding my statement.
      I haven’t spoken about any dependent or independent media in Bahdinan.
      I was suggesting that the “so called independent media” such as Hawlati and others could and should follow up on the story and find out the facts instead of writing down what some other newspaper has written without any investigation.

      Hawlati and others are may be afraid to do that because they seem to have their preset opinion and don’t feel that they need to double check to just find out that they were wrong!

      Of course they might also be afraid of harassment and being arrested by police and other security forces.
      Well that is a possibility but if they are afraid of that then they should close down their newspaper and just open an office in London by just copying and pasting what others have said on the internet right?

      But Hawlati doesn’t seem to be afraid of being sued by PDK or the KRG for “false allegations, spreading wrong information and endangering the internal stability and peace of Kurdistan”?

      These charges could definitely arise in such a case even in liberal western countries, put aside countries such as Russia, China, Iran or Turkey.

      Anyway, the first duty of media is to inform the public according to the facts and the truth and if they can’t do that because the circumstances don’t allow it or the lives of their reporters are in danger then the very least thing they can do is saying:

      “sorry, we have no reliable information on this issue, so we have nothing to report”,
      instead of participating in spreading the word of mouth and a bunch of speculation.

      These are the most simple and natural prerequisites of serious and sincere journalism.
      If they can’t meet these very least conditions they should just quit.

      It is a serious issue providing the people in Kurdistan with journalistic cover in these very sensitive years in our country and this demands a great deal of honesty and sense of responsibility and accountability.

  25. sami
    December 6, 2011 | 18:17

    We live in the forest and we are exposed to the attacks of savages and always Lord Robin You are talking in a country where rights as a human being and we are in hell

  26. Dilir
    December 6, 2011 | 18:51

    Beware of Michael hidden agendas. He is a wolf approaching in the attires of a sheep. His constant animosity toward Kurdish leadership is making me curious.

    • دڵشاد خۆشناو
      December 6, 2011 | 23:40

      Kak Dilir,

      in this regard please see my response to oramary above.

      Slaw u rez

  27. kochar
    December 6, 2011 | 19:13

    Let’s be realistic, demand the impossible!
    let’s ask the BARZANIS to either update themselves and give way to real democracy in our land or simply leave politics for their own sake; they seem to have run out of ideas as to how to run two provinces and they are stuck in the past and terrified of the future.
    After the recent events their credibility is completely at stake and I wonder who will pay the price, them or innocent people on their behalf as always?

  28. rawa
    December 6, 2011 | 22:21

    barzani= sadam for kurd

  29. 31 ap jash
    December 6, 2011 | 22:22

    musod barzani its black list and he help sadam husin oll famley barzani with rishim sadam and he dont no dimokraty he jast tirorist kild kurdish kidss and woman oll man

  30. yad
    December 6, 2011 | 22:23

    barzani .is =sadam hussen son. very bad barzani its dectators . no body like barzani he is danger

  31. karzan
    December 6, 2011 | 22:24

    terrorist barzani

  32. lavin dhoky
    December 6, 2011 | 22:24

    I love you Michael Rubin

  33. dyar
    December 6, 2011 | 22:24

    thanks master robbin for you anales

  34. ary
    December 6, 2011 | 22:25

    Its good to know that there is actualy some one out there to write about those things that happing in kurdistan.
    PDK is always killing and doing very bad things against owen people to gain power.

  35. kurdo
    December 6, 2011 | 22:30

    freedom for kurdistan.we need cheng

  36. haji hasan
    December 6, 2011 | 22:35

    every kurdish nows kdp is doing this so barzane must go like kadafe

  37. […] riots themselves were a cause of KDP’s poor security management. A KIU activist cited the fact that the two KIU imams in Zakho had long been fired, and that the imam under fire for his comments […]

  38. Kuvan Bamarny
    December 6, 2011 | 23:37

    Folks, Dont put the whole blame on the shoulders of your own kurdish fellows whether it be relgoius kurdish party or a none relgious kurdish party.To be fair Not much blame goes on KRG government for the regrratble unrests that has been occuring in kurdistan. There is a bigger aginda going in that region.Some bigger powers from east and west trying to control the region politically and economically.Some of them are using relgion to achive that goal and some other are using freedom or democracy methods to win the heart of poeple and control thier mind for ther own advantage in that region. Unfortunately ,in the proccess of doing so, Kurdish poeple are being sandwiched in between because of the geographical and stratigical location of kurdistan in that region.Therefore most of the the blame of unrest in Kurdistn should be put on those who in the name of God and Islamic values or in the name of judo-christanity values , have been interfering into the internal affairs of poor kurdish poeple and have hold kurdish nation as a hostage all along the history and dargged them towards east or west,used them as a card to win thier neve-r ending political games, whether it be between islamic nations and judo-christian nations, or between secular and relgoius parties .

    • دڵشاد خۆشناو
      December 8, 2011 | 12:07

      kak Kuvan you are generally right but the sad thing is that many Kurds prefer hating and attacking each other instead of being unified against those who want to harm them and trying to find the path to a better future.

      Slaw u Rez
      Dilshad Xoshnaw

  39. Heva
    December 6, 2011 | 23:42

    KDP’s history generally and Barzany’s tribe especially full of betraying and traitorism
    Since 1946 when first Barzany went to Muhabad (Capital of Kurdistan Republic) while Qazi Muhammad asked for surrender, Mustafa Barzani chose resistance. Then when he was in exile in India, Iraq became a republic in 1958, Ibrahim Ahmed the establisher of KDP tried to bring him back to Iraq, he(Ibrahim) made a great mistake and made Mustafa Barzany the head of KDP,from that date until now they became that nightmare on Kurdistan’s people ,as there is no other solution for our people only to put that fire which KDP ignited these days on those Islamic Party and put it on KDP’s leadership especially Barzany’s tribe in south Kurdistan during a collective uprising to not only topple them but get them buried and throw them away into our history’s bins.
    Barzany’s tribe especially have given no ransom or scarified soul in all their history for Kurdistan.
    They opposed but supressed and executed all tribes heads in South Kurdistan, from Fakhir Agha Mergeswri to Haji Ibrhaim Charmaga in 1972, they ignited the interior war in 1964 and followed Jalal-Talabany ‘s friends and comrades to Eastern Kurdistan(Iranian) until the settled down in Hamadan.
    Mustafa Barzani killed the most famous leaders of Kurdistan Democratic Party in Iran including(Mala Awara, Ismail Mueini, Salih Lajani,….) even inside their leadership, they assassinated most popular comrades and hard-working cadres of their party such as(Shex Muhammad Harsin,Haval Jwjala,.until Jawhar Namiq recently poisoned by them in Europe)
    Barzany killed the most powerful and popular leadership in (Western Kurdistan) Syrian and (North Kurdistan- Turkish) such as Dr.shivan &….
    Kdp was and still the first party who ignited the fire in South Kurdistan, since 1964 until 1997 in south, they suppressed Eastern Kurdistan’s revolution while they helped Iranian Sha(Muhhammad Raza Shah with Sawak then when Khumany came on power in 1981 they were very well known as Pasdar-muqata .
    Unfortunately we need books about Barzany’s betraying of Kurdistan’s movement.
    In the recent days they want to advise USA plus UK and all western governments that such as Islamic Parties became powerful, if we do NOT suppress them they soon become your enemy on power in Kurdistan Region.
    After Bashar Asad’s fall(hopefully will be very soon) that wave will not stop and will be transferred to Kurdistan, Iraq, Iran and hopefully to Western allies(Turkish fascist regime as well) there are elections in south Kurdistan for city councils cities, KDP’s first competitive party is those Islamic Party which are very active “peacefully” and mild & un-armed forces in Bahdinan region -the area which is under KDP’s control, so KDP has to create another interior war in order to suppress the only competitive parties in their area in order to monopolize the area better than any other times before.

    Hopefully Kurdistan’s people efforts will overthrow all KDP & PUK’s plots through an uprising towards Kurdistan’s independency in which we respect each other ideas and accept our future through election’s polls soon.

  40. Friend of you
    December 7, 2011 | 06:50

    دڵشاد خۆشناو

    Let’s keep our Kurdish culture of respecting someone based on his age alive regardless whether he is right or wrong.(Hamma Mirwaisi)

    Thank you for being more considerate and more patient.

  41. barzinji
    December 7, 2011 | 07:14

    its very clear senarion but fortunatley was expired ! every body knows that we didnt have any religen problem in kurdistan with christian people at all , and everybody knows who attack and fired KIU centers in dohuk and zaxo in 2005 and this time , PDK resist to take this resposibility and refuse to be a charge for what happen ,according to my investigation and saw all video clips that captured i can prove that it is totally PDK members who did this barbaric activities because KIU is growing up in theri regions and can compete with them
    1- their is one relion guys speak to the people inside police car and courage them to put fire and distroys message center and clubs and he said all regional goverment members are with us , so its clear KIU not related to this issue and why this religon man speak inside police car if its not senarion !
    2- i saw some video some people with arm dressed showting TV towers of KIU TV in zaxo , so who are them ! if PDK said not us so it means theri is not goverment over their !.

    finally , this issue have big influence on huamn rights in kurdistan and democracy and on PDK reputation as well.

  42. dana .university of sulaimany
    December 7, 2011 | 10:45

    Dear Rabn United States and West responsible about what happened first in our country from the dominance of Aldictatariaat and the Kurdistan region was part of a scheme

  43. Ninos Sheamon
    December 8, 2011 | 19:47

    You forgot to mention , that those attacks were carried out against businesses owned by Assyrian Christians who are the indigenous people of Iraq. The Barazani and Talabani families are both held accountable because they are the most corrupt people in today’s Iraq. They ignore the people’s need for a better future and wherever you go in Northern Iraq, corruption is at its best.Barazani and Talabani are both criminals against the Kurdish people back in the early 1990’s . Again, get your fact right and try to be more specific in your writings, do not hide the truth as it is seen

    • Kuvan Bamarny
      December 8, 2011 | 23:53

      Iam proposing a good proposal when I say equality for all citizens of kurdistan regardless of their color , race . Religion and identity. That includes Assyrian , Yazidi and Turkuman a well.Why should I be more specific about Assyrian in my text? Are they better then Kurds or turkuman or yazidy or Arab or muslem or anybody else in this world? The answer is no . You are just as good as everybody else is.Just because, one time in the history you happen to make an empire on that land by force ,doesn’t mean its your for ever.You Assyrian were too weak to survive in that land because Persians and Arabs Moslems destroyed both your empire and Christian religion in the middle east. Kurdish people are originally Zoroastrian and we have done nothing bad to you Assyrian guys.Its you Christian nations from west and muslem nations from east who doesn’t leave Kurdish people alone and let them live a peaceful life in thier homes. So as you see iam not being prejduce agaiinst Assyrians or anybody else In kurdistan. HELLO ,,”Equality for all” means nobody is better that the other

  44. Kuvan Bamarny
    December 8, 2011 | 21:22

    Kurdistan is a post-secular, post-theocratic society, and need a strong independent judiciary and strong parlament , in order to ensure justice happiness and equality for all citizens regardless of whether they are a secular citizen or a religoius one.And citizens as well need to fullfil thier duty towaards the state and contribute help and a positive role towards building up a strong , stable,healthy civilazed democratic socitey in which all citizens respect each others ideas and beliefs and live side by side peacefully.

  45. Ishmaiel
    January 25, 2012 | 14:49

    I aggree with comments and urguments
    rised by Mr.دلشادخوشناوwe as a kurd should learn a critical analysis of what the writer motoive in writing a bout Kurdish issues? who is he ? cause we Kurds naturaaly inheretend a self-hetred behavour and luck of self steem>
    I think all the arguments the writer mentioned here is suspecious and not proved, Kurdish people should be more cerful and self respect when deeling with national issues. as the proverbs goos”Good will be good for you when you be good for your self”

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