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What Kurdistan Would Look Like

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The invasion of Iraq and the later Civil War in Syria have allowed the Kurdish populations of those countries to obtain a large degree of autonomy. But the sovereign and united Kurdish state that activists and ethnic leaders have been campaigning for since the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire has never come together. This map highlights several different proposals over the years for what Kurdistan might look like. The Treaty of Sèvres was a plan by the World War One victors to carve up much of present-day Turkey. Kemal Ataturk's revolution in the Turkish homeland and successful military campaigns prevented it from ever being implemented. Note that the green-shaded "Kurdish inhabited areas" on this map are also inhabited by non-Kurds, including some areas (the Iraqi city of Mosul, for example) that are majority non-Kurdish even while containing a large Kurdish population.

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