Hasan Hama, Hawre (2019) KURDISTAN’S REFERENDUM: THE WITHDRAWAL OF THE KURDISH FORCES IN KIRKUK. Asian Affairs, L (III). pp. 364-383. ISSN 03068374

[img] Text (Research Article)
03068374.2019.1636522.pdf - Published Version

Download (393kB)
Official URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/raaf20/current


Less than a month after the Kurdistan independence referendum, the Iraqi Army and units of the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) attacked the disputed province of Kirkuk on October, 16, 2017. Unlike most national defence forces, the Kurdish Peshmerga is divided along partisan lines between the two largest parties in Iraqi Kurdistan. This particular area was largely under the control of units affiliated with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), which decided to make a strategic withdrawal in the face of superior numbers and firepower. The city was then retaken in short order by forces loyal to Baghdad, as were all other disputed territories previously under Kurdish control. Subsequently, the allegation that the PUK had retreated too easily has been described by the rival Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and others as a betrayal of the Kurdish people by the PUK. This has created two competing post-event perspectives: first, that the Peshmerga forces should have defended Kirkuk to the last man and should not have left their front line trenches; second that the withdrawal of the Peshmerga was a deliberate and rational military reaction to overwhelming opposition. This article critically assesses both perspectives and finds that partisan divisions in the Peshmerga critically undermined the ability of Kurdish forces to defend the disputed areas that they controlled. Instead of serving as motivation of create a unified fighting force, the loss of Kirkuk has only served to deepen those divisions.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: KDP,PUK,Referendum, Iraqi Army and Popular Mobilisation forcesd, isputed territories, retreat of the Kurdish forces, betrayal and rational choice
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Depositing User: ePrints deposit
Date Deposited: 15 Dec 2020 11:40
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2021 11:35
URI: http://eprints.tiu.edu.iq/id/eprint/257

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item