On the 15th September, 2014, the world’s darkest and inhumane force, ISIS, attacked the Kurdish town of Kobanè in Syria. ISIS carried this attack out with heavy weaponry obtained from the Iraqi and Syrian armies and with the active support from the states of Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
ISIS posed a global threat for humanity after it was able to take over large swathes of land in Iraq and Syria. The main ambition of this organisation was to establish a sectarian system that repudiated the basic values of democracy, freedom and equality. Despite this, many states supported ISIS as a means of advancing their own interests. While the Turkish state supported ISIS in order to reverse Kurdish gains for improved status in the region, Qatar and Saudi Arabia have lent support for sectarian reasons; certain Western powers, on the other hand, turned a blind eye to ISIS for economic and hegemonic interests. With this support behind it, ISIS continued its horrific attacks. It was not just in the region, but all over the world where it carried out it these attacks. A conflict resulting in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people was under way. This is a conflict that has left millions displaced and on the hungry and exhausting trails of migration.
ISIS targeted the Kurds and women as primary victims to build its empire of fear. On the 14th August, 2014, ISIS attacked the town of Sinjar where it killed thousands of civilians and abducted over 5,000 Yazidi Kurdish women to sell off as sex slaves.
ISIS, encouraged by the Turkish state, then set out to destroy the secular, egalitarian, and pluralist administration formed by the Kurds in Rojava by attacking the town of Kobanè on 15th September, 2014. This attack demonstrated the existence of two conflicting positions. On the one side you had the regressive system represented by ISIS, and on the other side you had the human liberation, women’s liberation, democratic and ecological principles represented by the Kurds. Kobanè was where these two positions came to a confrontation.
Kobanè became a symbol for progressives, democrats and especially women from across the globe. The defeat of ISIS in Kobanè marked the beginning of the end of a nightmare and destroyed the myth of ISIS’s invulnerability.
This reality was witnessed by the global public. The values of those resisting in Kobanè, especially the determination of the women, became a glimmer of hope against the bleakness of ISIS. In response, on 1st November World Kobanè Day people from around the world gathered to defend freedom with song and to condemn the powers supporting ISIS. The women of Kobanè, the freedom fighters and the public that supported them, had destroyed the empire of fear established by ISIS.
Today Kobanè is free, but ISIS is still on the attack supported by some of the states in the region. We call upon everyone to once more join together 1 November World Kobanè Day to celebrate the victory of Kobanè in its third year and to also send a strong defiant message against the barbarism of ISIS and its supporters.
Let’s take to the streets on 1 November World Kobanè Day and once again sing our freedom songs, to establish a system that respects democratic principles, women’s liberation and the natural ecology.
Let’s raise our voices in support of peace and freedom on 1 November World Kobanè Day against those that are provoking war for their own economic and imperialistic ends.
Let’s take to the streets on 1 November World Kobanè Day to demand a halt to all reactionary forces and the nationalistic, sectarian and dictatorial policies of the regional states.
Let’s take to the streets to strengthen international solidarity on 1 November World Kobanè Day.
Kobanè Solidarity Committee- Europa