Two Front

Rubin, Elizabeth
March 2003
New Republic;3/17/2003, Vol. 228 Issue 10, p12
Describes a meeting of Iraqi opposition parties in Kurdistan. Despite the official, comic-book-style cold war with the United States Iran for its own reasons was not blocking its borders to northern Iraq. Simply put, the Kurds do not want Turkish soldiers patrolling their streets and dictating their lives. The town used to be a summer resort for Iraqis, and these days Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) head Massoud Barzani and his clan live and operate out of a palatial compound formerly owned by Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. For their part, the Kurds may speak rosily of America and democracy, but they have been burned too many times by the U.S. to believe it won't renege on more promises. For the last three years, Nasreen Mustafa Sideek has controlled one of the biggest government budgets for reconstruction, managed the oil-for-food program, and overseen the completion of 900 houses built for displaced Kurds from Kirkuk. The Turks may or may not enter Iraqi Kurdistan, with or without a mandate, but, in the meantime, locals are trying to prepare themselves for the worst: a chemical attack by Saddam.


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