Syrian Kurds: who to trust?

Commentary Materials 16 January 2019 15:48 (UTC +04:00)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Jan. 16

By Azer Ahmadbayli – Trend:

Only some 10 years ago, the UAE was perceived in the world as one of the "coolest" trade hubs and a great place for recreation and shopping at the same time – no geopolitics, only business and leisure.

The same can be said about Saudi Arabia – a closed society that once a year opens its doors to millions of pilgrims visiting the main Muslim shrines, and a number one oil trader, which used to be reluctant to venture into politics.

Even if I am wrong, and these countries someway participated in the formation of the political agenda of the region, they did it inconspicuously.

What do we see now? Two allied countries plunged impetuously into big politics. Both are parties to the Yemeni crisis; the Emirates are also trying (so far successfully) to take over the Yemeni island of Quneitra; also, some time ago, both were supporting the "moderate opposition" countering the Syrian regime.

Recently, since the Emirates finally realized that the Syrian opposition is losing the battle, it has hastened to restore diplomatic relations with the Assad government. Saudi Arabia is also said to be carefully probing the ground for this move.

The Emirates, which consider Iran at least an ill-wisher for its interference in Arab affairs, condemns neighboring Qatar for, allegedly, discrediting ties with Iran, at a time when its own trade with the Islamic Republic is greater than anyone else's.

Both countries suddenly increased interest in relations with the Arabs’ existential foe – Israel.

And here's the latest news: Minister of foreign Affairs of UAE Anwar Gargash worries about the fate of the Syrian Kurds who have nothing to do with his country.

Here's what he tweeted: “Since the Kurds played a key role in the defeat of the “Islamic state” terrorist organization, it is legitimate that the regional and international community is concerned about their fate. In this sense, the Arab interest requires that the deal with the role and location of the Kurdish component be restricted within the political framework and in a way that preserves the unity of Syrian territory.”

In response, Mustafa Bali, head of the press service of the Syrian Democratic forces (SDF), said that “historical need” is for the Arabs and Kurds to work together to prevent the return of the “new Ottoman Empire.”

Is it really all about the fear of the Iran's expansionism or, as they say, Turkey's imperial ambitions?

It is up to the Kurds whose words to believe. As for the talks with the Assad regime, the Kurdish political parties have little faith in success in talks with the Syrian government, according to the Kurdish media.

“We don’t think that the regime is ready to provide anything to the Kurds. Assad several times refused to meet with the party,” said member of the Political Bureau of the Kurdish Democratic Progressive Party Ahmed Suleiman, Rudaw news agency reported.

If the Kurds do not want to once again be thrown overboard, they need, after carefully analyzing the events of recent years, to negotiate not with those who are visually attractive, but with those who can keep their word.

If they want to negotiate with Assad, they should not talk to him but go to Moscow. There they could have a chance that if promised something, they would get it.

Except Putin, the second politician of such kind is Erdogan, however unacceptable it may be for some Kurdish forces. Many Kurdish decision-makers likely realize this.