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Rojava: The betrayal of a Revolution

category mashriq / arabia / iraq | imperialism / war | opinion / analysis author Freitag Juni 15, 2018 08:02author by Mandy Moussourisauthor email sifuna.zonke at gmail dot com Report this post to the editors

The ongoing war in the Middle East, the Arab Spring followed by what seems to be a winter of war that rivals Game of Thrones has seen the death of many a revolutionary and many a revolutionary dream.

Within this ongoing war are stories of struggle against tyranny, struggles by ordinary people to gain some sort of control over their lives as they get buffeted between superpowers and ideologies fuelled by greed and underlying neoliberal capitalism. The struggle of the Kurdish people of Rojava is one such story. It is not a new one and it is not a perfect one. It is a story of courage and inspiration, of brave women and men, of complexity and of huge challenges. It is a story of our age, where competing geo-political powers fuel wars in other lands and on other people to further their own interests.

turkeyinvadesafrin_jan2018_1.jpg

Since 2014, the Kurdish people and their peoples’ defence units in Syria – the YPG (Male Defence Units) and YPJ (Female Defence Units) – have been defending their towns and areas against one of America’s most wanted terrorist groups, the Islamic State (IS), after Syrian state forces retreated from Kurdish areas. IS on the other hand have been fighting the YPG and YPJ for control of the area. Turkey says the YPG and YPJ are linked to Turkey’s most wanted terrorist group, the PKK (Kurdish Worker’s Party).

Over the years, the YPG and YPJ have pushed back IS and increasingly built a safe zone within their borders where feminist principles and a system of participatory self-management have been core to the society they are busy trying to protect and develop. The Kurdish controlled zones are collectively known as Rojava.

Whilst there are some problems and contradictions within Rojava, there are important revolutionary principles and social experiments taking place. For more information on this check out our educational series here.

There are many lessons we can learn from Rojava. One important one is how attempts by people to build self-management and fight institutions like capitalism and patriarchy get used and battered in the never ending war between Karl Marx’s proverbial “band of warring brothers” and the states that support them.

When the war in Syria first broke out in 2011, after popular uprisings against the Assad regime, a vacuum in power developed which saw a number of different parties/organisations/interests fighting to fill the power vacuum. One of these groups was IS and this gave the United States of America (USA) the perfect excuse to get involved. Because the people of Rojava were defending their areas against IS and had succeeded in forcing them back the USA agreed to support their self- defence units (YPG and YPJ) with weapons. This assisted with the further push back of IS. At the same time the Syrian government and their supporters, backed by Russia, were also fighting IS but the USA does not support the Syrian Assad Government or Russia. Turkey, in turn, covertly supports IS because it does not support the Assad regime and it doesn’t want a revolutionary Rojava on its doorstep that could spread into Turkey.

There are Kurdish people living in Syria, Turkey, Iran and Iraq and there have long been calls for Kurdish independence in Turkey which led to the 1980’s formation of the PKK, who have used insurrectionist tactics to fight for independence. As the YPG and YPJ have got stronger and brought larger areas in Syria under their control and gained access to arms via the USA, so the perceived threat to Turkey has increased, culminating in Turkey invading Afrin (an area in Rojava), through both airstrikes and ground troop attacks close to the Turkish border but within Syrian territory.

The Syrian Government has been reluctant to defend its border and has allowed the Turkish army to conduct the airstrikes but also has tacit agreement to support the Kurds, and has unofficially sent in “Popular Mobilization Units” (PMU) loyal to the Assad regime. Both America and Turkey are members and allies in NATO but are backing each other’s so-called terrorists in the Syrian War and at the same time trying to save a bit of face publicly. As a result America has started withdrawing its political support for the Kurdish people in Syria and has made no statements condemning the attack by Turkey on Rojava leading to the death of hundreds of civilians, including many children.

And so, once again, like in Spain in the 1930s a movement of ordinary citizens to create a new, different and better life without patriarchy and capitalism is betrayed by the geo-political powers that claim to support them but ultimately only ever work for themselves alone and will crush any and everything to get what they want.

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Mashriq / Arabia / Iraq | Imperialism / War | en

Do 15 Nov, 14:10

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turkeyinvadesafrin_jan2018_1.jpg imageSolidarity for Afrin and Rojava against the Turkey State 23:58 Di 30 Jan by KAF 1 comments

No to war, No to dictators and States, No to corporations, No to religions, No to nationalism!

Dear Anarchist Comrades wherever you are,
We, anarchists stress that we are against war, against military attacks and militias. We are strongly against killing civilians and launching attacks against villages, towns and cities killing innocent people discriminating and destroying their places.

df0c1da5b22e4a8fbe74d256ebb68e2a.jpg imageStates at War with Peoples will Lose 09:23 Mi 24 Jan by Devrimci Anarşist Faaliyet 0 comments

Afrin belongs to the peoples of Afrin. Peoples living in Afrin were born in these lands and died in these lands. Living there is not related to any plans or programs. They are not in Afrin as part of a strategy. Afrin, for them is water, bread, food, play, stories, friends, mates, lovers, streets, homes, neighborhoods. But for the state, it is only a strategy. A strategy that does not care about Afrin or the peoples of Afrin. [Türkçe] [Castellano] [Ελληνικά] [Français] [Italiano]

gal_14771.jpg imageThe Turkish army is attacking Yezîdî Kurds and Rojava villages 20:09 Di 25 Apr by KNK 1 comments

According to the latest information, 26 Turkish warplanes attacked Amûd and Geliyê Kersê of Şengal/Sinjar. The bombardment is still going on. It has been learned that prior to the aerial operation, communication networks had been completely cut in Dêrik and its surrounding areas.

150122_842113389166036_7294858716189015531_n.jpg imageVictory to the Rojava Revolution! 20:52 Sa 25 Okt by Melbourne Anarchist Communist Group 0 comments

Leaflet distributed today at a rally and march in Melbourne in solidarity to the Kurdish struggle.

rojava_1.png imageInternational Libertarian-Socialist Statement in Solidarity with the Kurdish Resistance 06:36 So 19 Okt by Johnny 2 comments

For some years now the Kurdish movement has been moving in the direction of libertarian ideas. While not an anarchist movement, this move is a sign that anarchist ideas of freedom and equality through solidarity, our ideas of horizontality and radical direct democracy and our radical critique against the State are not only valid and strong, but are also necessary for movements in order to break away from the authoritarian legacy within the left. It is our duty to express our solidarity with Rojava and the Kurdish movement, because they represent hope in this region and because they are the oppressed fighting the oppressors. Real struggles are never perfect but they carry diverse degrees of potential to being about a free society. Expressing our solidarity with the revolutionary movement in Rojava means we understand our role is to continue developing the core tenets of our ideas in order to inspire revolutions and revolutionaries all over the world. - Anarkismo.net Editorial Group [Italiano] [Ελληνικά] [Castellano] [Français]

daf_in_koban_10.jpg imageRevolution will win in Kobanê! 16:41 Do 09 Okt by DAF 0 comments

It’s the 24th day of ISIS attacks on Kobanê. While people’s defending forces in all border villages are on human shield sentry for Kobanê against attacks, everyone, everywhere in the region we live, rised up not to let Kobanê fall. [Français] [Italiano]

anarchist_womendafkobane.jpg imageLatest news from Kobanê 21:35 Sa 04 Okt by DAF 3 comments

The Turkish state that is preparing to interfere to avoid the ISIS danger, is at the same time neglecting the offensive made by ISIS supporters within its borders, showing its politics of hypocrisy. [Italiano]

daf_in_kobane_3.jpg imageTurkish anarchists in Syria to support Kurdish people 16:37 Sa 27 Sep by Workers Solidarity Movement 5 comments

Istanbul anarchists along other leftists, feminists, and 'Gezi park types' have managed to cross over into Syria and the northern town of Kobane which is currently threatened by ISIS. [italiano]

daf_in_kobane.jpg imageIn Shingal, Kobane and all Rojava, ISIS is Dehak and the people are Kawa 21:35 Fr 26 Sep by Devrimci Anarşist Faaliyet 0 comments

In Kurdistan, people are fighting against ISIS, “the procreated violence” given birth by capitalism and the states that start wars for their own benefits. ISIS, subcontractor of the states that pursue income strategies on the region, is attacking people while yelling “islamic state!” and “holy war, jihad!”. People are suffering from hunger and thirst, getting ill, getting injured; migrating ad dying. They are still fighting in that struggle for existence. People are fighting not for the schemes and strategies around meeting tables, not for income, but for their freedom.

textPalestine-Israel: The joint struggle confront the transfer efforts of the Israeli settler colonialis... 16:49 So 21 Sep by Ilan S. 0 comments

Though Israel failed in its last open assault on the Gaza Strip, it still succeed in its transfer efforts. The drowning of a refugee ship with 450 mainly Gaza people reflect the partial success of Israel transfer efforts that for the never ended efforts since 1948. The siege on Gaza join the pressure on both Palestinians within the 1948 borders and that of the 1967. The big masses were driven out during the 1948 and 1967 wars, but efforts continued with all means possible. Some expelled by force some were moved within the border as pressure to "voluntary transfer". Within the 1967 borders, the Israeli efforts are targeted on the villages and Bedouins living in area C where the joint struggle to resist it is mainly focused in the South of Hebron Hills. And the joint struggle in Arkib, Dahamsh (1948 borders), and Bil'in, Ma'asara, Nabi Saleh, Ni'ilin, Qaddum, Sheikh Jarah (East Jerusalem) continue "as usual". [Italiano]

more >>

imageThe battle of Idlib Province in Syria is decisive and crucial for the future of Rojava Sep 08 by Zaher Baher 0 comments

This article is a brief analysing of the future of Rojava in Syria in Line with the attack of Assad’s forces on Idlib’s Province . The battle of Idlib can be a crucial one for all sides who are involve especially for the regime and the Kurdish in Rojava . There are few scenarios that the Kurdish forces there and its self rule administration are facing . There is also a strong possibility after this battle the Kurdish question there can be on the top of Assad and Russia’s agenda to be resolved either way.

imageAfrin and the Policies of the Democratic Union Party Apr 04 by Zaher Baher 0 comments

This article talks about Afrin and stress on the wrong polices of the Peoples’ Democratic Party , PYD. In falling Afrin the PYD should take some responsibility. It also remind us what lessons we can take and stresses on the reasons as to why we should not trust the political parties in building the Democratic Confederalism .

imageA call for solidarity: defend Afrin — defend humanity! Jan 29 by Dilar Dirik 0 comments

In the battle for Afrin, we see the universal dimensions of popular struggles against fascism, dictatorship and death — and for democracy, freedom and justice.

imageThe geopolitics of the Kurds and the case of Rojava Jan 29 by Ercan Ayboga 0 comments

How does the military cooperation of the Kurds in Rojava and Northern Syria with the US, Russia and other forces affect their standing in the larger Syrian context? [Note of Anarkismo -This article was written before the current Turkish invasion to Rojava]

imageIn retaking Mosul YPG/J and the Guerrillas must be aware of the hidden agenda Aug 04 by Zaher Baher 1 comments

This article is about retaking the city of Mosul that has been under control of Isis since 09/06/2014. At the moment the Iraqi government is in talk with KRG and US forces about making plan to liberate it. In my opinion this will be one of the bloodiest battle that could happen in Iraq since 2003 after the invasion. I believe there is a hidden agenda, when Isis is defeated, it will try to run away. The liberator forces may push them to withdraw towards Jazeea in Rojava. So it is necessary for YPG/J and the Guerrillas to change their tactic.

more >>

imageSolidarity for Afrin and Rojava against the Turkey State Jan 30 Kurdish-speaking anarchist forum 1 comments

No to war, No to dictators and States, No to corporations, No to religions, No to nationalism!

Dear Anarchist Comrades wherever you are,
We, anarchists stress that we are against war, against military attacks and militias. We are strongly against killing civilians and launching attacks against villages, towns and cities killing innocent people discriminating and destroying their places.

imageStates at War with Peoples will Lose Jan 24 DAF 0 comments

Afrin belongs to the peoples of Afrin. Peoples living in Afrin were born in these lands and died in these lands. Living there is not related to any plans or programs. They are not in Afrin as part of a strategy. Afrin, for them is water, bread, food, play, stories, friends, mates, lovers, streets, homes, neighborhoods. But for the state, it is only a strategy. A strategy that does not care about Afrin or the peoples of Afrin. [Türkçe] [Castellano] [Ελληνικά] [Français] [Italiano]

imageVictory to the Rojava Revolution! Okt 25 Anarkismo 0 comments

Leaflet distributed today at a rally and march in Melbourne in solidarity to the Kurdish struggle.

imageInternational Libertarian-Socialist Statement in Solidarity with the Kurdish Resistance Okt 19 2 comments

For some years now the Kurdish movement has been moving in the direction of libertarian ideas. While not an anarchist movement, this move is a sign that anarchist ideas of freedom and equality through solidarity, our ideas of horizontality and radical direct democracy and our radical critique against the State are not only valid and strong, but are also necessary for movements in order to break away from the authoritarian legacy within the left. It is our duty to express our solidarity with Rojava and the Kurdish movement, because they represent hope in this region and because they are the oppressed fighting the oppressors. Real struggles are never perfect but they carry diverse degrees of potential to being about a free society. Expressing our solidarity with the revolutionary movement in Rojava means we understand our role is to continue developing the core tenets of our ideas in order to inspire revolutions and revolutionaries all over the world. - Anarkismo.net Editorial Group [Italiano] [Ελληνικά] [Castellano] [Français]

imageIn Shingal, Kobane and all Rojava, ISIS is Dehak and the people are Kawa Sep 26 DAF - Revolutionary Anarchist Action 0 comments

In Kurdistan, people are fighting against ISIS, “the procreated violence” given birth by capitalism and the states that start wars for their own benefits. ISIS, subcontractor of the states that pursue income strategies on the region, is attacking people while yelling “islamic state!” and “holy war, jihad!”. People are suffering from hunger and thirst, getting ill, getting injured; migrating ad dying. They are still fighting in that struggle for existence. People are fighting not for the schemes and strategies around meeting tables, not for income, but for their freedom.

more >>
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