PKK fighters, Armenian Genocide

Are the U.S. and Turkey on a Collision Course

By —— Bio and Archives--October 15, 2007

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By Gallia Lindenstrauss

Turkish-American relations currently face two significant challenges.  One has to do with the Turkish inclination to enter northern Iraq in order to deal with Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK) fighters operating there.


The other is connected with an upcoming U.S. House of Representatives vote on a resolution to recognize as genocide the mass killings of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire during World War I.  Both challenges touch on very sensitive issues for the Turks, who are convinced that the U.S. is insufficiently attentive to their needs and demands.

The Turks have threatened to intervene in northern Iraq on several occasions since the fall of Saddam Hussein but they now appear more determined than ever to do so.  In addition to the existing massive buildup near the border, the government has now decided to ask for parliamentary approval to send forces into Iraq. This decision follows the killing of 30 soldiers and civilians by the PKK in the last two weeks, in what are considered unusually severe actions by the PKK.  According to the Turks, the U.S. has consistently failed to act against PKK fighters hiding in the area of Kandil in northern Iraq and does nothing to prevent attacks on Turkey from that region.

The approval of the resolution by the House Foreign Affairs Committee on October 10 prompted severe condemnation by Turkish leaders and led Turkey to summon its ambassador in the U.S to Ankara for consultations.  President Abdullah G


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