RealNews

California Kurds training to accompany GIs to Iraq

Volunteers from San Diego area want revenge against Hussein. This suburb 20 minutes east of downtown San Diego is a place of high desert hills and valleys polka-dotted with houses. The 6,000 Kurdish immigrants who call El Cajon home say the landscape drew them here because it bears a remarkable resemblance to their homeland in northern Iraq. Many came to America after the failed Iraqi Kurdish uprising in 1975. Many more have immigrated since the Gulf War, making the San Diego area the home of the largest Kurdish community in the United States except for Nashville. Some of the El Cajon Kurds may be going back soon if war breaks out with Iraq. In December, Congress approved $92 million to train 3,000 exiled Iraqis in the United States and Europe to accompany U.S. forces. Of all the ethnic groups in Iraq, the Kurds have suffered the most under Saddam Hussein’s regime. One hundred thousand were killed in Hussein’s brutal 1988 Operation Anfal, which included the use of chemical weapons and resulted in the destruction of 2,000 villages and the displacement of hundreds of thousands. Full Story

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