Friday, August 3, 2007

Now that you're depressed...

...time for your jaw to drop. This is from the MoJo Blog at Mother Jones magazine, dated July 30.

In this morning's Washington Post, Robert Novak reports that select members of Congress were informed last week of a covert operation now underway to target leaders of the PKK, a Kurdish separatist movement in southeastern Turkey. [Emphasis added.]
Over the last two years, the blog reports, members of the PKK have been staging more frequent cross-border raids into Turkey while taking refuge in the mountainous areas of nothern Iraq where Kurds have established an essentially autonomous state. Turkey has been responding by shelling areas over its border with Iraq and making increasingly bellicose noises about undertaking harsher measures. But, as Novak correctly notes, if it did it would surely find itself engaging not just the PKK but the military forces of the Kurdistan Regional Government: a second real shooting war on a second front in Iraq, this one pitting two US allies against each other.
[I]t's unclear what the U.S. can do to calm things down. Bush apparently believes that deploying Special Forces troops to hunt down PKK leaders will help resolve the issue. This seems doubtful. But it could succeed in exhausting the patience and goodwill of Iraq's Kurds. What then?
Well, by then Bush will be out of office and he won't give a damn. As for the Kurds, our use and subsequent dismissal of them would hardly be unprecedented. If it came down to a choice, I don't think there's any question that the "tilt" would be toward Turkey - especially as pressure mounts for withdrawal from Iraq and the poster-child status of the "success" of the Kurdish region becomes less important in US political schemes.