With the help of Israel, the Shah of Iran, and the U.S. behind the scenes, Barzani and Talabani started the Iraq civil war in 1961. Each family, claiming to be the liberator of the Kurdish people, fought the other, accusing it of betrayal to foreign intelligence services. One family first co-operated with the Shah of Iran, and when alliances changed, one aligned with Iran and the other chose Iraq, so they never agreed to work together for the benefit of the Kurdish people.
The Kurdish people suffered from those wars, with millions losing their lives or ending up as refugees in different parts of the world, while Barzani and Talabani and their families reaped the benefits of Kurdistan's oil.
After the first Gulf War, the two families divided the region into two separate areas, following which, with the help of the former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, they signed a peace agreement to divide the Kurdistan region into two separate countries. Recent rapid changes in the Middle Eastern geo-political map raise questions about ongoing U.S. government sponsorship of that agreement.
Other Kurdish leaders in Turkey, Iran, and especially in Syria, who are serving the Kurdish people at the grassroots level, now offer hope of liberation from the Barzani and Talabani families' unjust practices against the Kurdish people living in the KRG areas.
Talabani's grave illness marks his family's gradual loss of power, while the Barzani family heirs have divided power between the Kurdistan Regional President Massoud Barzani's son Masrour Barzani, the head of Barzani's intelligence services, and regional Prime Minister Nechirvan Idris Barzani, nephew and son-in-law of Massoud Barzani.
Desperately seeking the protection of the Prime Minister of Turkey, the Barzani family finds itself in a Catch 22 situation. If Turkey moves in to Iraq and Syria it will ignite a war between the regional governments of Sunni Islam and Shi'a Islam. The same will happen in Iran. However, neither of them can save the Barzani family from rejection by the Kurdish people in the KRG region.
Barzani and Talabani are finished politically and militarily in Kurdistan, and the Gorran party of Nawshirwan Mustafa with the Islamists is not capable of withstanding the power of the Kurdish people's revolt against the robbery of their wealth and their widespread oppression. The majority of the five million Kurdish people in the KRG area have joined the Kurdistan Democratic Solutions Party (PCDK) branch of the Kurdish National Council (KCK), while many of the forty million Kurds in Turkey, Syria and Iran have joined the organization's local subsidiaries.
The uncertain future of the oil business in the Kurdistan region now means the U.S., the E.U. and Israel will soon have no choice but to deal with the KCK and its subsidiaries (PKK, PYD, PJAK and PCDK) in Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq to protect their interests in the region.
1975 Algiers Agreement
Background of the Persian Gulf War
TRANSCRIPT: ALBRIGHT, TALABANI, BARZANI REMARKS, 9/27/98