Kurdish Peshmerga Reluctant to Fight Baghdad's Battles
Officers in the Kurdish Peshmerga paramilitary force say that they have received an informal offer of a truce from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syrian (ISIS) fighters who have been sweeping through Iraq recently.
“If you don’t attack us, we would not attack you,” appears to have been the extent of the offer, which was delivered by courier from ISIS territory to Peshmerga fighters south of Kirkuk.
Though ISIS has often fought with the Kurdish factions in Syria, they have so far focused on the military in Iraq, against whom they have won several overwhelming victories.
The Peshmerga has used the fighting as an opportunity to seize some Iraqi cities of their own, and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) seems to be getting closer to outright secession. Given that, they seem in no hurry to start fighting ISIS, especially if ISIS isn’t going to threaten their territory.
That could change quickly, of course, but for now it seems mutually beneficial for ISIS and the KRG to ignore one another and focus instead on shoring up their respective domains out of territory the Maliki government simply can’t hold any longer.
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