First Essay in “Voices from Turkey” Series: A Kurdish Autumn Becomes Turkey’s Long Winter

“Kurds were the sore losers of last century, but this century will be ours,” a senior Iraqi Kurdish politician once remarked on a flight between Istanbul and Ankara. Sure enough, Iraqi Kurds have benefited from the U.S. invasion in Iraq by establishing a successful self-governing entity and are well on their way to possible full independence.

But inside Turkey, Kurdish dreams are set back by a bitter and bloody war between the state and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK. The conflict resurfaced last summer following the breakdown of peace talks that had been going on for several years.

Read the rest of the essay from Aslı Aydintaşbaş — an Istanbul-based journalist and visiting fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations — on how the conflict is reshaping Turkish and Kurdish politics.

Next up in the “Voices from Turkey” series will be an essay by Mustafa Akyol on the state of public dialogue and discourse in Turkey today. Stay tuned.

The Voices from Turkey series is part of “Turkey in Europe and the World — A Trilateral Initiative,” funded by Stiftung Mercator. The project is organized by the Center for American Progress (Washington), the Istanbul Policy Center (Istanbul), and the Istituto Affari Internazionali (Rome) and aims to outline a long-term prosperity vision for Turkey, explore its role in Europe and the trans-Atlantic relationship, assess the state of the republic and its institutions 100 after its foundation, and examine its position in the region and the world.

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