Latest from Winthrop Rodgers
The planned U.S. consulate complex in Erbil, in Iraq’s autonomous Kurdish region, has been plagued by delays and is being overtaken by changing political circumstances. The substantial compound may stand as a relic of unfulfilled ambition: a case study in the ebb and flow of dynamics in a volatile region.
Why is the main route between Erbil and Sulaymaniyah, the Kurdistan Region’s two largest and most important cities, a bumpy, dangerous, two-lane road? The lack of an efficient link between the two cities is a perfect example of the Kurdistan Region’s internal divisions, reflecting its dysfunctional politics in physical form.
For many Iranian Kurds, passing over the mountains into Iraq’s Kurdistan Region means crossing into an uncertain future. Poverty, neglect and a shaky legal status weigh heavily. Although some have been in Iraq for decades, reticence from some lawmakers in Baghdad means there is little chance of them obtaining Iraqi citizenship and some measure of security.