Kurdish Protective Spirit: Brig. Gen. Audino Interview on the Mike Hewitt Show

Kurdish Protective Spirit: Brig. Gen. Audino Interview on the Mike Hewitt Show
Velma Anne Ruth - Sun Sep 07, 2014 @ 10:53PM
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"There is a will to defend humanity that saturates the Kurdish population" - Brig. Gen. Ernie Audino (US Army, Ret.)

Dear Friends, 

I hope you will take a few minutes, or some additional time to watch and listen to this interview with Brig. Gen. Ernie Audino (Ret.) on the Mike Hewitt Show (September 7, 2014), as he shares some insight on his experiences serving the US Army with Kurdish military in Iraq ("Peshmerga"), and reflects on the protective spirit of the Iraqi Kurdish people. 

Some highlights from the interview: 

  • During his tenure in Iraq, Gen. Audino was Commander of the military transition team, Chief Combat Advisor to a full brigade of Kurdish fighters, known as PUK "Peshmerga." PUK is a political party in Kurdistan, and "Peshmerga" means "those who confront death." Close to the border of Iran, then Commander Audino helped to build capability to conduct independent counter insurgency plus links to intelligence, weapons mobilization, and beyond
  • The Treaty of Laussane in 1923 maintained the division of Kurdistan between four nations: Turkey (est. 20+ Mn Kurds), Iraq (est. 10 Mn Kurds), Iran (est. 6 Mn Kurds), and Syria (est. 4 Mn Kurds)
  • Gen. Audino's served alongside a Peshmerga Commander who had been fighting Islamist terrorist groups before US engagement, fought Saddam, and had been wounded 8 times in battle. When they were in the field, the Commander was wounded a 9th time, and according to US standards would have qualified for 9 Purple Hearts. The Commander said, "Brother, for you to get hurt, I'll have to die first." "Those are the words of a real Brother", Gen. Audino reflected. 
  • Gen. Audino served "near Halabja, the location of the World's greatest chemical attack site against a population, which wiped out 5000 people in one day wiht a mix of chemical, blister, nerve, and possibly choking agents"
  • "There is a will to defend humanity that saturates the Kurdish population... These are our best allies in Iraq and they always have been."
  • "Kurds were the object of real genocide, decades of repression. They were hit with chemical weapons 48 times, 48 villages saturated with chemical weapons." Gen. Audino served in 46 of those villages. "200,000 Kurds were slaughtered or went missing. 7 million land mines sewn into the land around the Kurds... Saddam called the concentration camps 'relocation camps'."
  • Kurds always identify with their ethnicity first, as Kurdish Muslim, Catholic, pre-Christian, or Jewish

Interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v051wDocN8k

See also:

US Brigadier General: “A Few Airstrikes Don’t Win Wars” 


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