The Kurds are the world’s largest ethnic group (25-35 million) without a nation. As the graphic below shows, Kurds are widely distributed throughout the turbulent regions of Middle East and Central Asia. The green areas are the major areas of heavy Kurdish concentration — but small enclaves exist in areas not marked. (For example, I met many Kurdish Turks in western Anatolia in 2008-9 — my impression was that these urban Kurds were well integrated into Turkish society, unlike their brethren in the East.)
Below is a report analyzing a little known dimension to the Kurdish Question in the turbulent North Caucasus (i.e. the area of red ellipse), where a relatively small number (approximately 64,000) people of Kurdish origin now reside.
Will Russia play the Kurdish card?
Maxim A. Suchkov, Ph.D., a former Fulbright visiting fellow at Georgetown University (2010-11), is currently a fellow at the Institute for Strategic Studies at the North Caucasian city of Pyatigorsk, Russia and is a contributor to the Central Eurasian Studies Society Blog.