Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Login

Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using
 

Email

 

Rudaw

Opinion

Let’s Give Oil a Fair Chance

By Yerevan Saeed 11/12/2013
opinion
opinion

Oil, a major contributor to violence in Iraq in the past, is about to find its own natural course through decentralization of its management, exploration and extraction.

Unfortunately, the old ruling mentality still exists in Baghdad, unable to accept the new Iraq under a new constitution. Such thinking tries to play by the old rules and pushes the country to its disastrous past by insisting on centralized power over natural resources.

What is more unfortunate here is the position of the US Department of State about how oil should be managed in Iraq. The State Department continues to make statements in support of Baghdad’s authority over the country’s oil and gas without any concrete legal grounds. This harks back to the way Britain supported the Iraqi government against Kurdish aspirations during its reign in Iraq.

Of course, the US has been a big contributor to the realization of Kurdish aspirations. It has assisted the Kurds in getting the status they have today.  Washington may fear that disturbing the status quo in Iraq may lead to a bigger conflict -- a view that in fact might be wrong.

The current situation in the country seems to be untenable, given the security, sectarian, social and political issues that have riddled Iraq. Let us make sure that the oil issue does not get mixed up with this, such that natural resources are blamed for unwanted consequences.

In what is happening now, one can see some parallels between the US policy on Erbil-Baghdad issues and British policies in Iraq during the first half of the 20th century.

When Britain formed Iraq, oil was a major factor in condemning the Kurds to be unwillingly attached to the current state of Iraq. Then Britain sided with Baghdad and continued its unconditional support for the government it formed, without considering the demands of the Kurds.

Had Britain implemented a balanced approach towards the demands of the Kurds and its puppet government in Baghdad, Iraq might not have gone through this continuous vicious cycle of violence for decades.

There are lessons here for the United States. If this 80-year-old failed policy does not change, the consequences could be unbearable for everyone in the years to come.

So, let us not blame oil for much of the curse, but rather wrong policies. Should oil be given its neutral role and the right policies are prescribed, it would only result in peace and prosperity between Erbil and Baghdad.

* Yerevan Saeed, graduate of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Boston.

 

Comments

 
MIB | 16/12/2013
Oil, I hate oil! If it weren't for oil Kurdistan would have been independent 100 years ago! Oil breeds lazy bastards. Just look at Saudi Arabia. Oil kills progress. Oil kills environment. I am afraid oil has already started to affect the mentality of my fellow Kurds. They already feel entitled to everything without working. Just like the Arabs...
Tags :
5119 Views

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

Kae Bahar | 2/7/2016 11:54:34 AM
FANTASTIC NEWS THAT THE KURDS ARE LEAVING ISLAM. The Sooner the Kurds FREE themselves from Islam the Sooner they will achieve their own Independent...
Rehand | 2/7/2016 12:18:33 PM
Living in Slemani and I've got several buddhist relatives and I'm a Taoist myself. As long as you keep your religion and philosophies to yourself you...
The changing face of Islam in Kurdistan
| 7 hours ago | (15)
Bahjat | 2/7/2016 10:03:28 AM
I advice President Assad to stop the war when Ally Forces withdraw their forces!
Rebaz | 2/7/2016 12:04:46 PM
Assad is obviously not a good guy but for idiots like 747 who wishes hell on his mother is pitiful at its best. His mother didn't do anything to be...
 Mother of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, the former first lady, dead at 86
| 18 hours ago | (5)
Josie | 2/7/2016 11:26:42 AM
Excellent article about an excellent film and it's making. The film has touched the hearts of many around the world and continues to win well...
Kae Bahar | 2/7/2016 11:33:41 AM
Thank you all for taking the time to comment about the Kurdish film industry and I Am Sami in particular. Dear Kim - Last year Claudio Von Planta and...
‘I AM SAMI’ wins best award at Erbil cinema forum, actors’ role recognized
| yesterday at 01:32 | (11)
Rojhalet | 2/6/2016 10:28:01 PM
PDKI unification is best for our freedom
Kurd | 2/7/2016 11:19:05 AM
@Ako Yeah, yeah. That's why we're still fighting against Iran for an independent Kurdistan. While PDKI has stopped their armed struggle for decaded...
KDPI tackles leadership and unification at party congress
| yesterday at 12:21 | (9)
0.313 seconds