What Palestinians Can Learn from the Kurds

The Kurds living in the Syrian region of Rojava have established a quasi-state that is an oasis of individual freedom and relative stability; their brethren in Iraqi Kurdistan have accomplished something similar. Unlike the Palestinians, they have made little effort to gain international recognition, focusing instead on the essentials. Bob Feferman and Dan Feferman write:

[The Kurdish leader Abdullah] Ocalan, who sits by himself in a Turkish island prison, left [his former] Arafat-like ways of terror behind, as he realized that fighting Turkey for independence was not realistic and cost his people too high a price. Instead . . . Ocalan’s followers, who number roughly 4.5 million Kurds in northern Syria, have established a number of democratic city-states—where gender equality is enforced almost as extremely as the exact opposite is just a few miles away in Islamic State-controlled areas. Elections ensure that the region’s non-Kurds are represented equally in matters of [public] decision making. . . .

The . . . Kurds in both Syria and Turkey, and the Kurds of northern Iraq, realized that the trappings of statehood meant little if the basis for a functioning society underneath was absent. Instead, the Kurds turned inward to gain stability. Rather than apply for meaningless membership in myriad international organizations, they sought economic prosperity and good governance.

In clear contrast, the Palestinians have tried bullying their way to independence by waging terrorism through suicide bombings, stones, bullets, and knives.

Welcome to Mosaic

Register now to get two more stories free

Register Now

Already a subscriber? Sign in now

Read more at Jerusalem Post

More about: Democracy, Iraq, Kurds, Palestinian statehood, Politics & Current Affairs, Syrian civil war

Is There a Way Out of Israel’s Political Deadlock?

On Tuesday, leaders of the Jewish state’s largest political parties, Blue and White and Likud, met to negotiate the terms of a coalition agreement—and failed to come to an agreement. If none of the parties in the Knesset succeeds in forming a governing coalition, there will be a third election, with no guarantee that it will be more conclusive than those that preceded it. Identifying six moves by key politicians that have created the deadlock, Shmuel Rosner speculates as to whether they can be circumvented or undone:

Sign up to read more

You've read all your free articles for this month

Register

Sign up now for unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Already have an account? Log in now

Read more at Jewish Journal

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Election 2019, Israeli politics