One of the Middle East’s longest running conflicts is on the verge of a dangerous escalation. While many perceive the Palestinians as the epitome of a people without a state, the Kurds remain the world’s largest ethnic group devoid of a state of their own. Few nations in the region, aside from Israel, have an interest in seeing an independent Kurdish state. This historic reality has led to a series of confrontations between Iraqi Kurdistan and Iraq’s Shiite-led government. Consequently, Arab Iraq’s recent attempts to boost its military presence in disputed areas have sounded the drums of war. With Kurdish and Iraqi forces now in a standoff and engaged in a dangerous game of brinkmanship, any incident could set-off another round of Arab-Kurdish wars in Iraq.
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