The Role of National Identity in Building a Kurdish State in Iraq

Dr Saeed

Following the publication of research by Soran University lecturer, Mr Saied Qader, entitled 'The Role of National Identity in Building a Kurdish State in Iraq,' a German publication house has published the research in the form of a book under the same title.
In an interview with our website, Mr Saied highlighted some aspects of the book. The main objective of the book, explained the researcher, is to analyse the events and the results of deliberations that are triggering the formation of an independent Kurdish state, and the associated role of national identity - history, language and, and culture - in the formation of a Kurdish state in Iraq.

Throughout his book, he has endeavoured to answer two questions:
1. What is the role of national identity in the formation of a Kurdish state in Iraq? What are the problems from which the Kurdish national identity suffers and that have prevented the formation of Kurdish state in Iraq so far?
2. What are the factors that are pushing Kurdish people and Kurdish leaders towards the formation of a Kurdish state?
Regarding the methods applied in the research process, Mr Saied explained that for interviews he has used the Qualitative Method, and for the data analysis he has used the Prismatic Method.
The results of the research, asserted Mr Saied, show us that the reasons behind the idea of forming a Kurdish state in Iraq is that Kurds have a remarkable population; they have their own history, language, and culture, and they have been subjected to oppression, suppression and eradication. Therefore, Kurds endeavour to form a state to defend themselves. Furthermore, Kurds have revolted and risen up against its enemies many times. The attempt to form a state is regarded as a way of guaranteeing existence, and repelling the brutal campaigns of enemies.
Mr Saied believes that 'national identity’ plays a constructive and major role in forming a national state. Obviously, often a particular group receives a particular identity and this identity consists of language, culture, land, history and feeling responsible for the people and the land. All these elements participate in creating the identity of a group. This identity will make the members of the group breathe collectively, be a unified or categorised group, and differentiate them from other groups.
The researcher applies his theories to Iraqi Kurdistan. Iraqi Kurds, said the researcher, possess their own national identity. This makes Kurds historically, geographically, linguistically, and culturally different from other Iraqi groups. Again this difference encourages them to demand an independent Kurdish state in Iraq. However, the elements of Kurdish national identity are not perfect. For instance, Kurds do not have a ‘standard’ language and, in addition there are many cultural and political tensions in Iraq.

• Bachelor in Sociology from Salahaddin University
• Master in Political Sociology from Sheffield Hallam University, UK
• Published two research papers
Teaches in the Sociology Department in Soran University's Faculty of Arts-

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