Considering the changes currently underway in Syria and Iraq, some have suggested that maybe the Sykes-Picot’s 100th birthday will be its last. Senior Iraqi Kurdish politician, Masrour Barzani, has even gone so far as to say that the Kurdish “are victims of Sykes Picot”.
One of these is Pashko Najmuddin, a Kurdish writer and analyst who lives in Sweden. “Countries created as a result of the Sykes-Picot were artificial. Which is why the Kurdish region in Iraq will not remain a region,” he argues. “Right now it is actually an independent state, albeit an undeclared one. The threads that connect Iraqi Kurdistan to Iraq are being cut, one by one.”
The only part of what would eventually be a greater Kurdistan that is missing out on the changes sweeping the region is that based in Iran. However Najmuddin believes it is only a matter of time before this changes too; there are between 6 and 8 million Kurds living in Iran.
So far, Kurdish interests in Turkey, Iraq and Syria have not caused any negative fallout in the West. Optimistic Kurds believe that if things continue to develop in the way they are, that the region’s Kurdish will become increasingly powerful over the next decade. The fog of war will dissipate in Iraq and Syria but by then the Kurds in those three countries will be stronger, safer and more independent.
A hundred years ago the Kurdish people were traded by the colonial powers, pawns to balance out new borders and ownership of oil-producing lands. In the next decade, the Kurdish people will play a similar role, only this time it is they who are in charge.