Turkey has been hit by a wave of bombings in the past few weeks. The worst attack so far happened on Wednesday when 10 people were killed and 14 injured in Diyarbakir, south-eastern Turkey. This follows previous attacks in Istanbul and the coastal resort of Marmaris.
The Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK) fighting for Kurdish independence claimed responsibility for the attacks, warning on its website that it would turn "Turkey into hell".
With Saddam Hussein now on trial for using poison gas against Kurds in Halabja, and Massoud Barzani, president of the Kurdish region in northern Iraq, banning the Iraqi flag from being hoisted on government offices; there is a renewed effort by Kurds for establishing an independent Kurdish state (Kurdistan) in the region.
As Jalal Talabani, Iraqi President and leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), said, "I don't think that Kurds will abandon their aim of establishing an independent Kurdish state."
The rationale behind establishing an independent Kurdish state is that only a Kurdish government could truly represent the culture and interests of the Kurdish people. Living in Turkey and under the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein, the Kurds saw the suppression of their Kurdish culture, curtailment of their rights and numerous atrocities committed against them.
This line of thinking views the Kurdish problem as one of ethnicity, rather than governance. Under the new Iraqi government, Kurds have been given greater autonomy and are now governed by Kurdish leaders, yet for ordinary Kurds they still suffer from corruption and oppression.
Kurds in Northern Iraq suffered years of bloodshed in the mid nineties because of constant infighting between the two main Kurdish parties – the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP).
In 1996, the KDP headed by Massoud Barzani, even sought help from Saddam Hussein – the Kurds worst enemy, to help capture Irbil from the PUK. Relations between the Iraqi Kurdish groups and the Turkish based Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) weren’t much different. In September 2000, fighting broke out between the PUK and PKK in the Qandil range of north eastern Iraq where the PKK had seized approximately 50 villages.
Protests by ordinary Kurds against the PUK and KDP came to a head earlier this year in Halabja where thousands gathered to commemorate the anniversary of the poison gas attack on the town. Furious Kurds stormed and destroyed a museum dedicated to the memory of the Halabja attack which for ordinary people has become a symbol of the Kurdish regional government’s oppression and tyranny. Many Kurds accuse their regional government of stealing donations gathered to help survivors of the poison gas attack.
"Kurdish officials used Halabja to gather money," said Tara Rahim who came to Halabja to honour her sister Zara killed in the attack. "Millions of dollars has been spent, but nothing has reached us," she said.
The problem in Iraq as elsewhere in the Muslim world is not one of ethnicity but rather the governing system. Saddam Hussein not only oppressed Kurds but he brutally tortured and murdered thousands of his own people whether Kurd, Arab, Sunni or Shia. He even executed his two son-in-laws!
The underlying culture of the Kurdish people is Islamic. They share the same Islamic culture as the rest of the Muslims whether in Turkey, Iraq or elsewhere. The most famous Kurd in history was Salahudeen Ayyubi. He is honoured not just by Kurds but by all Muslims, from all ethnicities, because of his liberation of Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, the third holiest site in Islam.
Some of the largest demonstrations against the blasphemous cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) took place by Kurds in Turkey. 50,000 demonstrators gathered in the city of Diyarbakir, scene of the latest bombing, waving green Islamic flags and chanting Islamic slogans.
Turkey suppresses the Islamic culture of all its citizens whether Kurd or Turk. Women are banned from wearing hijab in university, madrassas are closed down and Islamic politicians arrested. Saddam Hussein killed hundreds of Kurdish, Arab, Sunni and Shia Islamic scholars who opposed his rule.
The new Iraqi President Jalal Talabani may be Kurdish, but the lives of ordinary Kurds wont change unless the governing system changes. The only government, truly representative of the Kurds and the rest of the Muslims is the Caliphate, also known as the Imamate.
The Caliphate is a government built upon a concept of citizenship regardless of ethnicity, gender or creed and is totally opposed to the oppression of any religious or ethnic grouping.
The solution to the Kurdish problem is not further division. The future of Kurds in the region lies in the Caliphate and not an independent Kurdish state. Any Kurdish state in the region would be used by the west to fuel further division and regional conflicts. Ultimately this state would become yet another failed nation state that fulfils western interests rather than the interests of its people.