Analyses

Turkey and its failed military strategy in Southern Kurdistan

In a prominent development recently appeared within the context of the Turkish state’s military operations in Southern Kurdistan, the Ministry of Defense of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (Southern Kurdistan) announced that fighters of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targeted a vehicle which was transferring a group of Peshmerga. According to the statement of the military command, the targeting was carried out by a missile that led to the loss of five Peshmerga fighters to their lives, in addition to the wounding of another fighter, where the military command in Southern Kurdistan hastened to accuse the PKK fighters of being behind the operation.

In light of the acceleration of the military operations carried out by the Turkish state in Southern Kurdistan and its attempts to justify the failure of its internal policies in addition to its desire to achieve some in-kind gains ahead of the summit of the US President, Joe Biden and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish state has continued its policies of interfering in the affairs of the neighboring countries, where it has also reached the point of creating fake successes to raise the morale of the military and occupy the Turkish public opinion with it through the allegations that it promotes from time to time about its ability to target PKK fighters. This matter explains how difficult it is for the Turkish state to target every single PKK fighter.

While the events that took place in the past few days constituted prominent turns in the course of the battles taking place in areas of Southern Kurdistan, which included targeting fighters of the Peshmerga and accusing the PKK of the targeting process. It is undoubtedly possible that this step, which was developed in a very thoughtful manner, aims at the attempts of the Turkish state to conceal the extent of the losses it incurred during its military operations in the area, and on the other hand, it conceals the failure of the Turkish state’s strategy to eliminate the peoples’ aspirations for freedom, represented by the PKK, which the Turkish state sees as a threat to its national security as it repeatedly claims. The Turkish state was not only satisfied with using internationally prohibited weapons in its war against the PKK fighters, but it is currently trying to involve other parties in its battles against the PKK. Of course, all these facts confirm the failure of the Turkish military system to achieve what it aspires to.

On the other hand, political circles and figures in Southern Kurdistan, such as the Iraqi writer and researcher Hiwa Othman, lied the allegations made about the PKK’s involvement in the attacks on Peshmerga fighters. Some field commanders from the Peshmerga also refuted that. According to their military experience, the strike that hit the vehicle with a missile, was definitely via a drone, which opens the way for the possibility that the government of Southern Kurdistan, led by the Kurdistan Democratic Party (PDK), will be subjected to some kind of pressure. Undoubtedly, the quick and suspicious movement of convoys of the PDK’s Peshmerga later on, may indicate an attempt to escalate further.

There is no doubt that the Turkish state’s quest to gain more control over territories of Southern Kurdistan will continue in the coming weeks until the start of the Biden-Erdogan summit, in light of the continuation of the transfer of Syrian mercenaries from Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh and other areas in northern Syria to Southern Kurdistan. Here, we do not rule out that the Turkish state will tend to launch new military operations using the name and slogan of Peshmerga through the use of Syrian mercenaries, given that the circles within the Peshmerga forces had earlier condemned their unwillingness to engage in any battles against the PKK, as a result of which, about 150 fighters refused to go to the fronts lines with the posts of the PKK fighters.