As Iraq attempts to mend its deep and ruptured Sunni-Shi'ite divide, which appears to be tenuously mending, another seam in the country's unfathomable multi-ethnic and sectarian society is on the verge of unravelling and might threaten to once again engulf the country into ethnically motivated military confrontation.
The issue of territorial disputes between Arabs and Kurds in the provinces of Nineveh, Kirkuk and Diyala is now posing a serious risk to Iraq’s fragile political and social climate.
In recent months, the enduring antagonism between the Arab and Kurdish communities has spiralled motivated by resurgent Arab secular nationalism which seems to have gained huge momentum after the January provincial elections.
The fledgling Iraqi security forces could fracture along ethnic or sectarian lines between the Kurds and the Arabs which could undo Iraq’s entire attempt to stabilize itself politically with the possibility of an all-out military confrontation.
If the Baghdad's Central Government and the Kurdish Regional Government don't reach some sort of an agreement, Iraq's hopes for a new start may be put on hold. The question of US troop withdrawal will also need to be re-examined, by the Obama Administration in light of these new disturbing developments.