If 40,000 Deaths Disqualifies PKK, Should 1.5 Million Deaths Disqualify Turkey?

The United States continues to maintain a tight counter-terror partnership with the Syrian Democratic Forces, the Kurdish-led force that fights the Islamic State in northeastern Syria. Turkey continues to denounce the partnership, accusing the United States of working with a group that Turkey says is responsible for 40,000 deaths.

Policymakers should take the 40,000 number with a grain of salt, though, for two reasons: First, it includes all victims of the PKK insurgency, including villagers and other civilians killed by the Turkish Army. Second, a survey of newspapers going back to the beginning of the insurgency suggest the Turks crafted the figure out of whole cloth. Consider: On August 16, 1992, the Toronto Star reported, “Some 4,500 people have been killed since 1984, when the PKK launched its war for an independent state for Turkey’s 10 million Kurds.” On April 14, 1995, the Associated Press reported, “More than 15,000 people have been killed since the PKK launched its guerrilla campaign in 1984. It seeks autonomy for Turkey’s 12 million Kurds.” Four months later, the Irish Times wrote, “More than 17,500 people have died in the PKK’s fight for independence or autonomy in south east Turkey since 1984.” Simply put, as the Bosnia conflict and civilian casualties mounted, Turkey’s press handlers inflated PKK insurgency numbers to demand a share of the outrage and channel it against the Kurds.

Συνέχεια εδώ

Σχετικά Άρθρα