Battlepanda: In case you've forgotten about Iraq...


Always trying to figure things out with the minimum of bullshit and the maximum of belligerence.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

In case you've forgotten about Iraq...

Via Michael Stickings, I see that while eyes are on Lebanon, things are still apocalyptic in Iraq. The latest crisis point: the noticeably less-hellish Northern regions under Kurdish control.
Turkish officials signaled Tuesday they are prepared to send the army into northern Iraq if U.S. and Iraqi forces do not take steps to combat Turkish Kurdish guerrillas there - a move that could put Turkey on a collision course with the United States.

Turkey is facing increasing domestic pressure to act after 15 soldiers, police and guards were killed fighting the guerrillas in southeastern Turkey in the past week. "The government is really in a bind," said Seyfi Tashan, director of the Foreign Policy Institute at Bilkent University in Ankara. "On the one hand, they don't want things to break down with the United States. On the other hand, the public is crying for action."

Diplomats and experts cautioned the increasingly aggressive Turkish statements were likely aimed at calming public anger and pressing the U.S. and Iraq to act against the Turkish Kurdish guerrillas. But they also said Turkish politicians and military officers could act if nothing is done.
Conspicuously left undrawn in any of the articles I've read thusfar is the parallel between this situation and the ongoing standoff in Lebanon. If Israel has a right to defend itself, what of Turkey's right? If one accepts Israel's logic of going after non-Hezbollah targets in Lebanon for the Lebanese government's lack of initiative in curbing terrorist action, does that mean the Turks have the moral perogative, if not the practical werewithal, to bomb Baghdad? (Obviously, I'm painting an absurd scenario to illustrate a point -- Turkey has no desire to bomb Baghdad. Ankara probably have no stomach even for going into Northern Iraq.) Unless "might makes right" is a founding principle of your morality, there might not be any good answers to the proceeding question.