Calling Turkey’s War by it’s Real Name: Genocide
The last four days have been difficult for the Kurdish nation. Rojava, the smallest part of the ill fated nation was betrayed by their US allies and protectors and over to Turkey. This hand over to allow Turkey to create a so called ‘Safe Zone’ has instead unleashed a tirade of violence, executions, civilian convoys bombed and hospitals targeted. At least 200 civilians have died with hundreds more injured. 200,00 are also currently displaced.
The international media, hungry to sink their teeth into the latest regional bloodshed, have reported widely on the atrocities being documented proudly by the Turkish armed forces and their allied jihadist groups. One such jihadists group within the so called Free Syrian Army (FSA), Ahrar al-Sharqiya openly captured civilians and recorded their executions. Similar jihadists attacked the Ain Issa camp holding ISIS terrorists and their families and shot the guards. The results was 785 detainees escaping who currently remain at large and undoubtedly planning more massacres and beheadings.
This is not a war. Don’t be fooled by the media or the political leaders calling this a “war”. A war, according to international law and Just War Theory is a military conflict between two sovereign states with relatively equal power and capacity.
What is happening here is NATOs 2nd largest army and world’s no 10 military power with a population of 75 million attacking a neighboring region which has a population of 3 million at best; and who – until US armed them with weapons due to global pleasure over the siege of Kobane – were fighting ISIS with sticky-taped Ak-47s.
This is not a war. This is a genocide. This is ethnic cleansing. This is not a Turkey-Kurdish “war”. This is a deliberate, planned, systematic policy of demographic change, and neo-Ottoman aspirations coupled with strong Islamo-fascist tendencies. This is one of the world’s, and the region’s strongest sovereign military powers attacking a self-defensive organized group of civilians who had no choice to do so in light of savage attacks by ISIS; and in light of global silence as they were attacked, beheaded and kidnapped by ISIS. The QSD, YPG and YPJ are not a military funded, sustained and supported by a home state.
This is not the era of the 1994 Rwandan genocide where the Hutu massacred their neighboring Tutsi people with machetes and clubs. This is not the era of the 1915 Armenian genocide or the holocaust where thousands were imprisoned in death camps or sent on death marches. This is a new era of genocide: this new genocide is conducted through frighteningly violent proxy armed terrorist groups who will do the majority of killings. These killings occur through executions, beheadings, mass rapes, car bombs and kidnappings. As these terrifying killings occur, the escaping civilians are bombed or shelled with mortars. The hospitals are also targeted by the belligerent state so that the injured civilians have no medical support and bleed out. As the hospitals are being bombed so are the roads, the schools, the electricity and other service buildings. The fleeing, frightened civilians know that there is no home to return to. If they do, they will only face a hoard of violent beheading terrorists, most of whom have now settled permanently in their previous homes. At the same time the belligerent regime consistently bombs and shells the oppressed nation and it can afford to do so indefinitely in order to demographically change the region. The terrified civilians are displaced from their traditional homes and the international community provides them with flimsy tents as consolation for failing to do anything in response. This was the case in the 2018 invasion and ongoing occupation of Afrin and this is exactly the current objective for the invasion of Rojava by Turkey right now.
But let’s not lose sight of the real issue here. This is an effort by the capitalist Neo-liberal system to impose its own form of order. An order in which a radical, democratic and multicultural society that is founded on gender libation and ecologically sustainability cannot exist. An order in which arms deals are so lucrative that humanity dies like a bleeding child in the arms of her helpless mother. An order in which women like Hevrin Khalef cannot exist so that they can promote Kurdish-Arab unity and end what the system believes is primordial hatreds that it uses for its own self interests and to sustain a billion dollar arms market.
This is a system that cannot allow women to progress beyond the victim persona. A system that sanctions unarmed women to be dragged out of their cars and executed for promoting human rights. A system that sanctions women being terrified of mass sexual abuse, kidnapping and other gender based violence. A system that will punish, to the point of complete eradication, women’s attempts towards self protection. A system that provides them no justice post-conflict, no healing and no measure of reconciliation.
Let’s not lose sight of the real deal here. Genocides do not occur in the old ways. They occur on the green, lush lawns of the White House with handshakes. They occur with racist, sexual predators elected into the White House and ignorant, equally racist masses cheering him on. They occur through the construction of expensive mega towers in the capitals of fascist, dictatorial regimes. One thing that has not changed though is the global silence. A global silence and apathy that speaks of a painful absence of humanity even as social media and technological advancements bring the genocide right into our living rooms.
The Kurds have learnt well how international silence kills, and how it leads directly to genocides.