1979 Kurdish rebellion in Iran

The 1979 Kurdish rebellion in Iran[6] erupted in mid-March 1979,[6] some two months after the completion of the Iranian Revolution. It subsequently became the largest among the nationwide uprisings in Iran against the new state and one of the most intense Kurdish rebellions in modern Iran. Initially, Kurdish movements were trying to align with the new government of Iran, seeking to emphasize their Muslim identity and seek common ground with other Iranians. KDPI even briefly branded itself as non-"separatist" organization, allegedly criticizing those calling for independence, but nevertheless calling for political autonomy.[12] However, relations between some Kurdish organizations and the Iranian government quickly deteriorated, and though Shi'a Kurds and some tribal leaders turned towards the new Shi'a Islamic State, Sunni Kurdish leftists continued the nationalist project in their enclave in Kurdistan Province.[5]

While at first, Kurdish militants, primarily of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan, made some territorial gains in the area of Mahabad and ousted the Iranian troops from the region, a large scale offensive in spring 1980 by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard reversed the course of the conflict.

Following the eruption of the Iran–Iraq War in September 1980, an even greater effort was made by the Iranian government to crush the Kurdish rebellion, which was the only one of the 1979 uprisings to still go on (Arab, Baluchi, and Turkmen rebellions had already been subdued by that time). By late 1980, the Iranian regular forces and the Revolutionary Guard ousted the Kurdish militants from their strongholds, but groups of Kurdish militants kept executing sporadic attacks against Iranian militias. The clashes in the area went on as late as 1983.

About 10,000 people were killed in the course of the Kurdish rebellion, with 1,200 of them being Kurdish political prisoners, executed in the last phases of the rebellion, mostly by the Iranian government.[6] The Kurdish-Iranian dispute resurged only in 1989, following the assassination of a KDP-I leader.

1979 Kurdish rebellion in Iran
Part of Consolidation of the Iranian Revolution and Kurdish separatism in Iran[5]
Map of Iranian Kurdistan

The epicenter of insurrection
DateMarch 1979–1981[6]/1983[7]
Location
Result

Iranian victory

  • Most of Iranian force diverted to the Iran–Iraq War front since late 1980
  • Pockets of PDKI resistance remain until 1983[7]
Belligerents

Interim Government and Council of the Islamic Revolution (1979−80)


Iran Islamic Republic of Iran (1980−83)
KDP-I
Komala
PUK[1]
PKK[2]
IPFG[3]
OIPFG (Minority)[4]
KDP
(against PUK)[1]
Commanders and leaders

Iran Ruhollah Khomeini
Iran Mehdi Bazargan
Iran Abulhassan Banisadr
Iran Mohammad-Ali Rajai
Iran Mohammad-Javad Bahonar
Iran Mohammad-Reza Mahdavi Kani
Iran Ali Khamenei
Iran Mir-Hossein Mousavi

Rahman Ghassemlou
Foad Soltani 
Abdullah Mohtadi
Sedigh Kamangar
Jafar Shafiyi
Jalal Talabani
Nawshirwan Mustafa
Abdullah Öcalan

Ashraf Dehghani[3]
Masoud Barzani
Units involved

IRI Army

Revolutionary Guards
Unknown
Strength
Unknown 7,000 (according to the KDPI)[6]
A few captured tanks and light artillery pieces, recoilness guns and machine guns[9]
Casualties and losses
3,000+ killed (Iranian Government claim)[6] 5,000 killed (Iranian Government claim)[6]

1,200 Kurdish political prisoners executed[6]
12 Iranian officers executed for refusing to fight[6]

Total: 3,000[10]–10,000 killed[11]

Background

With traumatic experience during the Pahlavi rule in Iran and two major failed rebellions in 1946 and 1967, Kurdish political organizations were enthusiastic supporters of the revolution against the Shah, which brought Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to power in February 1979. The Shah had shown himself to be no friend of Kurdish aspirations for greater autonomy nor a loosening of Tehran's control over their affairs. Once again, from the early days of the Islamic revolution, relations between the central government and Kurdish organizations were fraught with difficulties and armed insurrection would ensue.

The Kurds, with their cross-border alliances, were seen as vulnerable to exploitation by foreign powers who wished to destabilize the young republic. Sunni Kurds, unlike the overwhelming majority of their countrymen, abstained from voting to endorse the creation of an Islamic republic in April 1979. That referendum institutionalized Shia primacy and made no provision for regional autonomy.

The crisis deepened after Kurds were denied seats in the assembly of experts gathering in 1979, which were responsible for writing the new constitution. Ayatollah Khomeini prevented Dr. Ghassemlou, the elected representative of the region, to participate in the assembly of experts’ first meeting.[13] Kurds were therefore deprived of their political rights under the new Iranian constitution, since the majority of them belonged to the Sunni branch of Islam.

The rebellion

Eruption

As the wave of nationalism engulfed eastern Kurdistan after the fall of the Pahlavi Dynasty in line with a series of anti-revolutionary revolts across the country (in Khuzestan, Iranian Balochistan and other parts of Iran), a full-scale rebellion was imminent. Also, in March 1979, the KDP-I formulated and publicly announced an eight-point plan for Kurdish independence.[14]

The uprising was born in mid-March 1979, when protesting Kurds took over control of police headquarters, army bases, and parts of army barracks in Sanandaj, after failure to disperse them by army troops.[6] According to BBC, the revolt began, when Kurdish tribesmen overpowered Iranian militias in the town of Paveh.[15] Allegedly, unrest then spread to other Kurdish-dominated regions as the Kurds took over towns and army garrisons trying to keep out the Iranian army,[6] namely to the towns of Divan Darreh, Saqqez and Mahabad.[15] Many Kurdish leaders went into hiding, after Khomeini ordered their arrest and murders.[15] Iranian newspaper reports at this stage did put the number killed at about 600.[15]

Since April 1979 armed conflict broke out between Kurdish factions and the Iranian revolutionary government's security forces. The Kurdish forces included primarily the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDPI) and the leftist Komala (Revolutionary Organization of Kurdish Toilers).[16] By late April, sectarian fighting also broke out between Kurdish and Azeri factions in the area, resulting in hundreds of Kurds killed. One of the "Azeri" tribes massacring the Kurds was the Karapapak tribe.[6]

Fighting campaigns and politics

In mid-August, without sufficient preparations and regardless of army's advice, the Revolutionary Guard marched on the Kurd-held town of Paveh, falling into a major ambush.[6] The defeat prompted Khomeini to approach the heads of the army and the government.[6] The new Iranian Islamic leadership had little patience for Kurdish requests and opted for crushing unrest through military means. As a result, Khomeini, the new religious leader of Iran, declared a jihad (holy struggle) and a fatwa (religious edict) against the Iranian Kurds and key Kurdish nationalist figures were declared "enemies of the state", like Ghassemlou,[14] in his statement on August 17, 1979. The government then began a three-week campaign to clear out Kurdish strongholds, mainly Saqqez and Mahabad.

On August 20, 1979, the Iranian army started the Siege of Mahabad. By August 30 it was reported they had managed to completely surround the city and three days of negotiations started. After this failed, Iranian forces invaded the city on September 3[17] backed by F-4 fighter jets and over 100 tanks.[18] Backed also by artillery power, they managed to seize control of the town after just several hours of fighting. The defeat in Mahabad was a major blow to the Iranian Kurds, and afterwards Iranian forces continued to march on the smaller town of Baneh.[17] Over 500 people were killed during the siege.[18]

The defenders were overwhelmed by the power of the Iranian offensive, using heavy artillery, tanks and air cover, but managed effective resistance. Despite the heavy casualties, the bulk of Kurdish Peshmerga evaded capture and death, so they retreated into the mountains.[6] The Kurds resumed their offensive six weeks later, returning to Mahabad and effectively fighting the armor forces of Iran with Molotov cocktails and RPGs.[6] In the end of November, Kurds also attacked Sanandaj, Saqqez and other Kurdish cities and towns.[6] Kurdish effective initiative continued, as Iranian government was distracted by other events in the country, such as the American Embassy hostage crisis in Tehran.

In a speech on 17 December 1979, Khomeini called the concept of ethnic minority contrary to Islamic doctrines. He also accused those who do not wish Muslim countries to be united in creating the issue of nationalism among minorities. His views were shared by many in the clerical leadership.[19]

The new Iranian administration of President Banisadr took office. In late January 1980, Revolutionary Guard units and government supporting Kurds unsuccessfully battled rebels in the region, resulting in a stalemate that lasted until spring. By May 1980, Kurds still controlled much of the regions' roads, rural areas and holding once again the city of Mahabad as their capital. The KDPI said that they control over 7,000 fighters at the time.

Spring 1980 Iranian offensive

In the spring of 1980, government forces under the command of President Abolhassan Banisadr brutally conquered most of the Kurdish cities through a huge military campaign, sending in mechanized military divisions to Kurdish cities including Sanandaj, Pawe, and Marivan.[20] Neighbourhoods of some villages and towns were destroyed as a result of the fighting between Kurdish rebels and Government forces .[21] Ayatollah Khalkhali, sentenced thousands of men to execution after summary trials. The Kurds however continued to hold Mahabad as the summer fighting diminished, while Iranian-Iraqi tensions grew.[6]

Autumn 1980 Iranian operations

In late August 1980, Iranian army failed to sack Mahabad, held by the Kurds for ten months.[6] They continued to hold it for five more months, as the Province of Kordistan became the theater of the Iran–Iraq War. Although President Banisadr ordered a cease-fire with the Kurds, following the Iraqi invasion, the Pasdaran ignored him, continuing their campaigns.[6]

The confrontation between Tehran and the Kurds intensified sharply when the Iran–Iraq War broke out, as Iran faced Iraqi support to the Kurdish insurgency in Iran, while waging its own campaign to encourage risings of various groups within Iraq.[14] It was initially assumed that Iraqi Kurds and their Iranian brothers would cooperate to exploit weaknesses on both sides. Not surprisingly, neither Baghdad nor Tehran was willing to accept that outcome. Rather, both sides insisted on organizing special loyalist Kurdish military units to participate in the war and to demonstrate allegiance to their respective states. Essentially, the Iraqi KDP and the KDPI were split, experiencing a series of internal conflicts.[14]

The Pasdaran units had not been effective against the Kurds, until Revolutionary Guard backed units engaged into fighting with Iraqis and Iraqi-backed Kurds in late December.[6]

Final stages

As the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps fought to reestablish government control in the Kurdish regions, more than 10,000 Kurds were killed during this process.[22]

Groups of KDPI soldiers continued to engage in low level campaigns up until 1983,[15] as the Iranian forces were diverted to the Iraqi front, with the escalation of the Iran–Iraq War.

Aftermath

While most of its military and political activity in Iran was greatly reduced after the 1979–1981 rebellion, the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran had continued its opposition activities through 1980s. In 1989, the KDPI renewed its military activities, among which most notable was the 1990 fighting, in which some 300 Iranian soldiers were allegedly killed.

Since 1996, following an effective political and military crackdown, the conflict of KDPI against the Iranian government shifted to the political opposition abroad.

Renewed insurgency in Iranian Kurdistan was undertaken since 2004 by another Kurdish militant organization—the PJAK, affiliated with the PKK.

Conflict parties

In media

Ettela'at newspaper publication

On 27 August 1979, in Sanandaj, Iran, 11 Kurdish prisoners were executed by a firing squad following a 30-minute trial under Shiite cleric Sadegh Khalkhali.[23] Jahangir Razmi, a photographer for Iran’s independent Ettela’at newspaper, captured the execution on film.[23]

Within hours an anonymous photo of the execution ran across 6 columns of the paper. On September 8, the newspaper was seized by the Foundation for the Disinherited, a state-owned holding company.[23] On April 14, 1980, the photo won a Pulitzer Prize. In 2006, Razmi made public 27 images from the execution that he had kept hidden.[23]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b Jeffrey S. Dixon; Meredith Reid Sarkees (2015). "INTRA-STATE WAR #816: Anti-Khomeini Coalition War of 1979 to 1983". A Guide to Intra-state Wars: An Examination of Civil, Regional, and Intercommunal Wars, 1816-2014. SAGE Publications. pp. 384–386. ISBN 978-1-5063-1798-4.
  2. ^ Elik, Suleyman (2013). Iran-Turkey Relations, 1979-2011: Conceptualising the Dynamics of Politics, Religion and Security in Middle-Power States. Routledge. p. 83. ISBN 9781136630880.
  3. ^ a b Zabir, Sepehr (2012). Iran Since the Revolution (RLE Iran D). Taylor & Francis. pp. 108–110. ISBN 978-1136833007.
  4. ^ Muhammad Kamal (1986). "Iranian Left In Political Dilemma". Pakistan Horizon. Karachi: Pakistan Institute of International Affairs. 39 (3): 39–51. JSTOR 41393782.
  5. ^ a b Denise, N. The Kurds And the State: Evolving National Identity in Iraq, Turkey, And Iran:p.145 2005. Siracuse University Press. "Instead of creating a cohesive Kurdish nationalist movement, some Kurdish leaders such as Husayni's brother Shaykh Jalal accepted Iraqi military assistance and formed a Sunni militia opposed to the Iranian government and Kurdish nationalist parties. Qasimlu differentiated his real Kurdish nationalist party from traitors within the KDPI. Others, such as the prominent Ghani Bolourian, tried to negotiate with the central government. After the revolution some Shi'a Kurds from Ilam, Kermanshah and West Azerbaijan turned away from Kurdish nationalists and towards non-Kurdish Shi'a communities. Sunni Kurdish leftists continued to direct the nationalist project in their enclave in Kurdistan Province, having marginal influence over Shi'a Kurds in other regions." [1]
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Ward, R.S. Immortal: A Military History of Iran and its Armed Forces. 2009. pp.231–233. [2]
  7. ^ a b c d e f "Kurdistan - Iran".
  8. ^ "What Is Iran Doing in Syria?". Foreign Policy. Archived from the original on 2013-01-23. Retrieved 2012-09-23.
  9. ^ Razoux, Pierre (2015). The Iran–Iraq War. Hrvard University Press. Appendix E: Armed Opposition. ISBN 9780674915718.
  10. ^ [3]
  11. ^ [4] "Sending in Pasdaran (Revolutionary Guard) rather than regular army troops, and dispatching the Ayatollah Sadiq Khalkhali—the "Hanging Judge"—resulted in the deaths of nearly 10,000 Kurds in the 1979–82 period alone, many in mass executions ordered by Khalkhali."
  12. ^ Denise, N. The Kurds And the State: Evolving National Identity in Iraq, Turkey, And Iran: p.144–45. 2005. Siracuse University Press. "Free to discuss its political views, the KDPI came out of thirty years of clandestine existence and made public claims for political autonomy"; "Despite its criticisms of the regime, in its early post-revolutionary public discourses the KDPI called itself an authentically national and Iranian party". [5]
  13. ^ Ali Reza Nourizadeh (Persian - Arabic - English)
  14. ^ a b c d Encyclopedia of the Peoples of Africa and the Middle East: p.390
  15. ^ a b c d e "1979: Kurdish revolt grows in Iran". 1979-08-23.
  16. ^ D. and in khorasan [Cultural & Civil society of Khorasani Kurds, www.cskk.org]. McDowall,A Modern History of the Kurds, 1996, Chapter 13, "Subjects of the Shi'i Republic," pp. 261-287.
  17. ^ a b [6]
  18. ^ a b [7]
  19. ^ Ayatollah Khomeini's Speech, Radio Tehran, December 17, 1979. Quoted in David McDowall, A Modern History of the Kurds (London: I.B. Tauris, 1996, p. 271
  20. ^ rev6 Archived November 6, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ Valli, Abbas (2014-10-07). Kurds and the State in Iran: The Making of Kurdish Identity. ISBN 9781780768236.
  22. ^ Are Kurds a pariah minority? | Social Research | Find Articles at BNET.com
  23. ^ a b c d [8]
1982 Iranian diplomats kidnapping

Three Iranian diplomats as well as a reporter of Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) were abducted in Lebanon on 4 July 1982. None of them have been seen since. The missing individuals are Ahmad Motevaselian, military attaché for Iran's embassy in Beirut; Seyed Mohsen Mousavi, chargé d'affaires at the embassy; Taghi Rastegar Moghadam, an embassy employee; and Kazem Akhavan, IRNA photojournalist. Motevaselian was also an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) member in command of an Iranian expeditionary force in Lebanon.

They were stopped at a checkpoint in northern Lebanon by Lebanese Phalange forces commanded by Samir Geagea. Speculation about their fate has circulated since their abduction. Iranian officials believe that they were handed over to Israel after they were kidnapped and are still alive and being held in Israeli territory. Israel said that the diplomats were captured by militia under Elie Hobeika. The Israeli newspaper Haaretz said that the diplomats were believed to be executed by Phalange shortly after their abduction. Geagea as well as Hobeika's bodyguard Robert Hatem also said that they were executed while under the Phalange's custody.The diplomats' disappearance is regularly commemorated in Iran. Both the Iranian and Lebanese governments have tried to gain information about their whereabouts. According to Nazih Mansour, former member of the Lebanese parliament, the case has turned into a political issue, rather than a judicial one since some of the involved people such as Samir Geagea have become political figures.

411th Engineering Group of Borujerd

411th Engineering Group of Borujerd (Persian: گروه 411 مهندسی بروجرد‎), also called 411th Combat Engineering Group of Borujerd (Persian: گروه 411 مهندسی رزمی بروجرد‎) is combat engineering unit belonging to the Islamic Republic of Iran Army. Its headquarters is located near Sarab-e Zarem village, Borujerd County, Lorestan Province, Iran.Some units of the group were involved in the 1979 Kurdish rebellion in Iran. The 411th Group was heavily involved in various operations of the Iran–Iraq War, most notably Operation Undeniable Victory, Operation Jerusalem Way, Operation Jerusalem, Operation Kheibar, Operation Dawn 8, and Operation Nasr 2.422nd Pontoon Bridge Group of Daghagheleh, Ahvaz is a subgroup of this unit.

Ali Asghar Vesali Tehrani Fard

Ali Asghar Vesali Tehrani Fard (Persian: علی اصغر وصالی طهرانی فرد‎ b. on Tehran, Tehran) known as Asghar Vesali' was an Iranian military leader.

Before the Islamic Revolution, He was the member of MEK after that he joined the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and was appointed a military leader of forces called "red handkerchief" in the Iran-Iraq War. He was killed in Gilan-e Gharb at age 30.

Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan

The Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI; Kurdish: Hîzbî Dêmukratî Kurdistanî Êran‎, HDKA; Persian: حزب دموکرات کردستان ایران‎, translit. Ḥezb-e Demokrāt-e Kordestān-e Īrān), also known as the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), is an armed leftist ethnic party of Kurds in Iran, exiled in northern Iraq. It is banned in Iran and thus not able to operate openly.The group calls for self-determination of Kurdish people and has been described as seeking either separatism or autonomy within a federal system.Since 1979, KDPI has waged a persistent guerrilla war against the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. This included the 1979–1983 Kurdish insurgency, its 1989–1996 insurgency and recent clashes in 2016.

Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps officials have called the party a terrorist organization.Hyeran Jo of Texas A&M University classifies KDPI as "compliant rebels". According to Jo, the KDPI gained "legitimacy" qualities by denouncing violence against civilians, claiming commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Geneva Convention Article 3, and as of 2007 is one of the signatories to the Geneva Call's ban on anti-personnel mines.

Hossein Hamadani

Hossein Hamedani, also spelled Hamedani (Persian: حسین همدانی‎; December 15, 1950 – October 7, 2015), was an Iranian Revolutionary Guard commander. He was posthumously promoted to a Major General from the rank of Brigadier General.

Iraqi–Kurdish conflict

The Iraqi–Kurdish conflict consists of a series of wars and rebellions by the Kurds against the central authority of Iraq during the 20th century, which began shortly after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in World War I and lasting until the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003. Some put the marking point of the conflict beginning to the attempt by Mahmud Barzanji to establish an independent Kingdom of Kurdistan, while others relate to the conflict as only the post-1961 insurrection by the Barzanis. The conflict lasted until the US invasion of Iraq in 2003, though tensions between the Kurdish autonomy and the central Iraqi government have continued.

The first chapter of the Iraqi–Kurdish dispute followed the end of World War I and the arrival of British forces. Mahmud Barzanji began secession attempts in 1919 and in 1922 proclaimed the short-lived Kingdom of Kurdistan. Though Mahmud's insurrections were defeated, another Kurdish sheikh, Ahmed Barzani, began to actively oppose the central rule of the Mandatory Iraq during the 1920s. The first of the major Barzani revolts took place in 1931, after Barzani, one of the most prominent Kurdish leaders in Northern Iraq, succeeded in defeating a number of other Kurdish tribes. He ultimately failed and took refuge in Turkey. The next serious Kurdish secession attempt was made by Ahmed Barzani's younger brother Mustafa Barzani in 1943, but that revolt failed as well, resulting in the exiling of Mustafa to Iran, where he participated in an attempt to form the Kurdish Republic of Mahabad.

In 1958, Mustafa Barzani and his fighters returned to Iraq from exile, and an attempt was made to negotiate Kurdish autonomy in the north with the new Iraqi administration of Gen. Qasim. The negotiations ultimately failed and the First Iraqi–Kurdish War erupted on 11 September 1961, lasting until 1970 and inflicting 75,000–105,000 casualties. Despite the attempts to resolve the conflict by providing Kurds with a recognized autonomy in north Iraq (Iraqi Kurdistan), the negotiations failed in 1974, resulting in resumed hostilities known as the Second Iraqi–Kurdish War, which resulted in the collapse of the Kurdish militias and the reconquest of northern Iraq by Iraqi government troops. As a result, Mustafa Barzani and most of the KDP leadership fled to Iran, while PUK gained power in the vacuum, leading an insurgency campaign against the central Iraqi government. Since 1976 PUK and KDP relations quickly deteriorated, reaching the climax in April 1978, when PUK troops suffered a major defeat by KDP, which had the support of Iranian and Iraqi air forces. During this period, the Ba'athist authorities took the opportunity to perform large-scale displacement and colonization projects in North Iraq, aiming to shift demographics and thus distabilize Kurdish power bases.

The conflict re-emerged as part of the Iran–Iraq War, with the Kurdish parties collaborating against Saddam Husein and KDP also gaining military support by the Islamic Republic of Iran. By 1986 Iraqi leadership grew tired of the strengthening and non-loyal Kurdish entity in north Iraq and began a genocidal campaign, known as Al-Anfal, to oust the Kurdish fighters and take revenge on the Kurdish population—an act often described as the Kurdish genocide, with an estimated 50,000–200,000 casualties. In the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War, a series of uprisings shattered Iraq, but only the Kurds succeeded in achieving a status of unrecognized autonomy within one of the Iraqi no-fly zones, established by the US-led coalition. In the mid-1990s the conflict between the KDP and PUK erupted once again, resulting in a bloody civil war, which ended in 1997. Despite mutual recognition after the 2003 Iraq war which ousted Ba'ath rule, relations between Iraqi Kurdistan and the Iraqi central government grew strained between 2011–12 due to power-sharing issues and the export of oil.

Kurdish rebellion of 1983

The Kurdish rebellion of 1983 occurred during the Iran–Iraq War as PUK and KDP Kurdish militias of northern Iraq rebelled against Saddam Hussein, in an attempt to form their own autonomous country. With Iraqi occupation of the Iranian front, Kurdish Peshmerga combining the forces of KDP and PUK succeeded in retaining control of some enclaves with Iranian logistic and sometimes military support. The initial rebellion resulted in stalemate by 1985.

The most violent phase of conflict between the Kurds and Iraqi Ba'athist regime was the following Al-Anfal Campaign of the Iraqi Army against the Kurdish minority, which took place between 1986–1988 and included the Halabja chemical attack. The Al-Anfal campaign ended in 1988 with an agreement of amnesty between the two belligerents, Iraqi government and Kurdish rebels. In the aftermath, no gains had been made by the Kurds and their losses can be measured in the immensity of human deaths.

Kurdish separatism in Iran

Kurdish separatism in Iran or the Kurdish–Iranian conflict is an ongoing, long running, separatist dispute between the Kurdish opposition in Western Iran and the governments of Iran, lasting since the emergence of Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1918.The earliest Kurdish separatist activities in modern times refer to tribal revolts in today's West Azerbaijan Province of Imperial State of Iran, prompted in between of the two World Wars – the major of those were led by Simko Shikak, Jafar Sultan and Hama Rashid. Many however, put the starting point of the organized Kurdish political-nationalist separatism to 1943, when Komala shortly afterwards KDPI began their political activities in Iran, aiming to gain partial or complete self-rule in Kurdish regions. Transformation from tribal to Kurdish political struggle in Iran took place in the aftermath of World War II, with the bold separatist attempt of the Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI) to establish the Republic of Mahabad during the 1946 Iran crisis. The Soviet supported attempt to establish a Kurdish state in Western Iran failed. More than a decade later, peripheral tribal uprisings, launched with KDPI support through 1966–7, Kurdish regions suffered a major blow. In the most violent episode of the conflict, more than 30,000 Kurds died starting with the 1979 rebellion and the consequent KDPI insurgency. Though KDPI's armed struggle ended in late 1996, another Kurdish armed organization emerged in Iran by the early 2000s. Insurrection led by PJAK in Western Iran started in 2004 and is ongoing to this day.The government of Iran has never employed the same level of brutality against its Kurds as did Turkey or Iraq, but it has always been implacably opposed to any suggestion of Kurdish separatism. Unlike in other Middle Eastern countries with Kurdish populations, Kurdish separatism in Iran has little to no support due to the very strong ethno-linguistical ties and the common history and culture they share with other Iranian peoples. Kreyenbroek claims many Kurds in Iran have shown no interest in Kurdish nationalism, especially Shia Kurds, who even vigorously reject the idea of autonomy, preferring direct rule from Tehran. The Kurds sharing a common history with the rest of the Iranian peoples is seen as another reason for why even Kurdish leaders in Iran do not want a separate Kurdish state.

List of modern conflicts in the Middle East

This is a list of modern conflicts in the Middle East ensuing in the geographic and political region known as the Middle East. The "Middle East" is traditionally defined as the Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia), Levant, and Egypt and neighboring areas of Arabia, Anatolia and Iran. It currently encompasses the area from Egypt, Turkey and Cyprus in the west to Iran and the Persian Gulf in the east, and from Turkey and Iran in the north, to Yemen and Oman in the south.

Conflicts are separate incidents with at least 100 casualties, and are listed by total deaths, including sub-conflicts.

The term "modern" refers to the post-WWI period, in other words, since 1918.

Marzieh Hadidchi

Marzieh Hadidchi (Persian: مرضیه حدیدچی‎, 12 June 1939 – 17 November 2016), also known as Marzieh Dabbaq and Tahere Dabagh, was an Iranian Islamist activist, political prisoner, military commander in the Iran–Iraq War, a politician and representative of Hamedan in the Iranian parliament in the second, third, fourth and the fifth Majles. She was also one of the founders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

Monte Melkonian

Monte Melkonian (classical Armenian: Մոնթէ Մելքոնեան; reformed: Մոնթե Մելքոնյան; November 25, 1957 – June 12, 1993) was an Armenian revolutionary, left-wing nationalist militant and commander. He was the leader of an offshoot of the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA) in the 1980s and the most celebrated commander during the Nagorno-Karabakh War in the early 1990s.An Armenian-American, Melkonian left the United States and arrived in Iran in 1978 during the beginning of the 1979 Revolution, taking part in demonstrations against the Shah. Following the collapse of the Shah's monarchy, he traveled to Lebanon during the height of the civil war and served in an Armenian militia group in the Beirut suburb of Bourj Hammoud. In ASALA, he took part in the assassinations of several Turkish diplomats in Europe during the early to mid-1980s. He planned the 1981 Turkish consulate attack in Paris. He was later arrested and sent to prison in France. In 1989, he was released and in the following year, acquired a visa to travel to Armenia.

Melkonian had no prior service record in any country's army before being placed in command of an estimated 4,000 men in the Nagorno-Karabakh War. He had largely built his military experience beginning from the late 1970s and 1980s, when he fought in Lebanon with ASALA. Melkonian fought against various factions in the Lebanese Civil War and against the IDF in the 1982 war.

Melkonian carried several aliases over his career and was known as Avo to the troops under his command in Nagorno-Karabakh. The last years of his life were spent fighting with the Nagorno-Karabakh Defense Army. Monte was killed by Azerbaijani soldiers while surveying Merzili with five of his comrades in the aftermath of battle. He was buried at Yerablur cemetery in Yerevan and declared a National Hero of Armenia in 1996.

Mostafa Chamran

Mostafa Chamran Save'ei (Persian: مصطفی چمران ساوه‌ای‎) (8 March 1932 – 21 June 1981, Tehran, Iran) was an Iranian physicist, politician, commander and guerrilla who served as the first defense minister of post-revolutionary Iran and as member of parliament, as well as the commander of paramilitary volunteers in Iran–Iraq War, known as "Irregular Warfare Headquarters". He was killed during the Iran–Iraq War. In Iran, he is known as a martyr and a symbol of an ideological and revolutionary Muslim who left academic careers and prestigious positions as a scientist and professor in the US, University of California, Berkeley and migrated in order to help the Islamic movements in Palestine, Lebanon, Egypt as a chief revolutionary guerilla, as well as in the Islamic revolution of Iran. He helped to found the Amal Movement in southern Lebanon.

Patriotic Union of Kurdistan

The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK; Sorani Kurdish: یەکێتیی نیشتمانیی کوردستان‎, translit. Yekêtiy Niştîmaniy Kurdistan; Kurmanji Kurdish: یه‌کیتیا نیشتمانی یا کوردستانێ, translit. Yekîtiya Nîştimanî ya Kurdistanê) is a Kurdish political party in Iraqi Kurdistan. The PUK describes its goals as self-determination, human rights, and democracy and peace for the Kurdish people of Kurdistan and Iraq. The current Secretary General is Kosrat Rasul Ali. Fuad Masum, co-founder of the PUK, was the President of Iraq from 2014 to 2018. It was founded on 22 May 1975 in Iraqi Kurdistan by Adel Murad, Nawshirwan Mustafa, Ali Askari, Fuad Masum, Jalal Talabani and Abdul Razaq Feyli.

Timeline of Kurdish uprisings

This is an incomplete list of Kurdish uprisings.

Valiollah Fallahi

Valiollah Fallahi (1931 – 29 September 1981), was a military officer and prominent figure during the Iran–Iraq War.

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