2000 Arabs Join the Kurdish Peshmerga, Setting Back Turkish Plans for Control Over Region

In a sign of long term Kurdish leadership in Northern Iraq, 2000 Nineveh Arabs have joined the Kurdish fighting force, the Peshmerga.  Kurdish news site, Rudaw reports that it was the Arab communities themselves who asked Kurdish President Masoud Barzani to allow them to form a brigade within the Peshmerga.

“The name of this brigade will be the ‘Brigade of West Dijla Peshmerga,’ comprising of Arabs from Zemar, Rabia, Ayazya and a number of villages in Sinjar. Their duty will be to protect their areas under the command of the Ministry of Peshmerga,” Sheikh Muzaam Ahmed Al-Uwet, a spokesperson for tribal forces of Nineveh Province, told Rudaw.

Partnership is Setback for Turkish Plans Post ISIS

Turkey’s strategy behind supporting ISIS (in the beginning) was to create chaos in their immediate surroundings.  As a NATO member and strongest military in the region they would be the only ones strong enough to restore order.  Order for Turkey is putting down the growing strength of Iraqi Kurdistan at the same as claiming more lands connected to the former Ottoman Empire.

That was in the beginning.  With ISIS being now surrounded by a combined Kurdish and Iraqi army in Mosul and more and more Sunni Arabs in the area recognizing that Kurdistan is a fact, Turkey’s ability to use chaos to rule may have seen its final door shut.  With the Arabs in Northern Iraq accepting Kurdish rule instead of Turkish, Iraqi, or Iranian, the relevance of a Kurdistan that is capable of restoring order is real making Turkey’s great gambit in Northern Iraq a losing proposition.