Despite the severe objection of all the elements in the region, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) under Masoud Barzani's administration held a referendum. So, the claim that the region belongs exclusively to an ethnic group has been encouraged one step further. It is very obvious that it has not found this courage by itself nor with the help of local forces in the region.
For centuries, people from various ethnicities have been living in these territories which the KRG tries to register as Kurdistan under the referendum. Moreover, they are all local elements of the region. The international law does not recognize and allow the logic where an element that has gained a majority of demographics in an area by chance claims such ethnic dominance over others.
According to the 1957 census, 70 percent of Kirkuk’s population is Turkmen. It is not known how this demographic structure has developed under the war, the U.S. invasion, Daesh threats and the continuous state of emergency. But even if Kurds have become a majority there, this should be a very recent development. Striving to assign a place to an ethnic identity by putting forward a purely numerical majority in such a short period can only be dubbed as seizure and invasion.
The Barzani administration held this referendum as he relied on and was encouraged by some. So, he has taken on the task of paving the way for joint occupation attempts in the region. It is obvious that the consequence of this referendum is not likely to be immediate secession, which is not possible because of both sociological and geographical reasons. It is not possible for a human community to survive alone in this geography.
So, the survival of a country which all nearby countries object to is not possible in any objective view. Nobody can expect that there would be immediate secession one day after the referendum, which was already predicted to be voted for by nearly 100 percent of voters. Knowing what an impossible thing they were doing, Nechirvan Barzani felt the need to make this statement while the referendum was taking place. He said that the referendum was not against any country in the region, and especially Turkey, explaining that there would not be a split after the referendum.
Didn’t everyone warn against this fact which was clear as day? What was the meaning of such a referendum, which would be impossible and which would have no other outcome than provoking the people of the region and raising trouble among them? Some may have been very much convinced of the narrative of "nations’ self-determination." Of course, this cannot be completely ignored. But we have to honestly ask whether there is a nation that has really set its own destiny in the modern world. In today's world, states, unfortunately, cannot be established without the support, intervention or struggle of other states, as can be seen in Syria for the past six years.
As the Syrians tried to hold on to their will to determine their own destiny, they have been subjected to all kinds of persecution by their own rulers and great powers. What happened when the Egyptians wanted to set their own destiny and showed the social will in the most peaceful and democratic way? Egypt’s own pharaohs, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Israel, the U.S. and EU countries did not give it the claim of self-determination. Despite their dignified position and resistance, they could not receive enfranchisement. This goes for Yemen and Libya too.
Actually, there is a reality of the slavery of nations. The self-determination of nations is the most important claim and reality of the world's sovereign powers. They do not let go of this right that comes from their power and tyranny alone. Don’t think that they liberate the people that they have allowed to found a nation and give them self-determination. The real slavery begins here.
Today, there are plenty of states that think themselves to be sovereign nations, but their will depends entirely on their owners. They do not neglect to give these nations a strong illusion of being a nation and feed them with the pride of a strange identity. I wish that Kurds in northern Iraq or northern Syria can really have the power and will to determine their own destiny, as we know that Kurds or any people in the region do not desire to set their fate to the detriment of their brothers, neighbors, and coreligionists. They are giving this right, which they do not give the majority of people in the region, to Kurds by pushing history and sociology.
So, nobody should expect that this right will bring freedom and honor to Kurds. The claim of self-determination that those trying to manage the process rely on is no different from an arrogant claim of divinity. They claim nations set their fate in this way. In fact, however, they make the ones they wish nations and bring them to the stage of history, while removing the ones that they do not want from this stage. They saw what public will is and how it was displayed on July 15, but did not give up.
They will see once again that there is another fate and its owner beyond what they think to determine. They will see how they will come to nothing in the face of those who properly enjoy freedom.
They will see how these people, whose fate they try to determine, will bring their end in their own fate.