Is this the Kurds’ idea of making Kurdistan great again?
The newest project bearing the name of Trump is not a luxury hotel. In fact, Donald Trump doesn't even know it exists.
A restaurant in northern Iraq in the Kurdish city of Duhok, which serves a kilogram of fried fish for $10, has been named “Trump Fish.” The distinctive logo is emblazoned with the president-elect’s infamous blond thatch, followed by a picture of a fish.
And although, the owner, Nedyar Zawity, claims he named the eatery after the American president-elect, not because he believed in his political views, but in order to turn in more profit, he also said that he liked Trump’s “toughness” and reputation as a businessman.
Zawity’s business plan seems to be working to some extent as the Trump name has attracted Western customers to the shop.
"He is an American, maybe he is not my favorite, but he is still American. So I'm happy to try a restaurant with an American name with Kurdish-Iraqi food," said David Hirsch, a librarian at the University of California, Los Angeles.
This strange new trend in Iraq is not just restricted to restaurants. People are also naming their children after the notorious billionaire real estate mogul.
Hassan Jamil, a Peshmerga fighter, has named his newborn son, Trump Hassan Jamil, and has a very simple reason to give for it.
“I call him Trump because Trump is charismatic and has clear policies. That’s why he won the elections.” said the proud father.
Peshmerga fighters, whose name is translated into “those who face death,” have proven to be important allies of the United States in its war against terrorism. Although Iraqis in the south have been gripped by sectarian clashes for decades, the Kurdistan region remained relatively safe from the conflict and even successfully developed its own autonomy.
The Kurds have petitioned for years to receive U.S.’s direct support instead of help being filtered from Baghdad. Under Trump’s administration, they are hoping for it to actually happen.
“I'm a big fan of the Kurdish forces,” said the president-elect in July. Kurds hope his rhetoric will translate into military support for them so they can achieve their long-held dream of an independent state of Kurdistan.
Banner and thumbnail credit: Reuters, Ari Jalal