Report from a comrade about the history of ISIS/Daesh (Iraq, Syria & Kurdistan)
IS (Islamic State) is attacking Kobane city in Rojava (it means West Kurdistan in Kurdish) as everybody knows. But what I want to explain is, why there is this organization called Islamic State, and how it was founded. So maybe everything can become more clear.
We can say the history of ISIS begins with Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, who organized the strongest resistance against the USA and coalition troops in Iraq. Actually he is from Jordan, city called Zarqa, so he took this name “Zarqawi”.
In Jordan he was in an Salafist and Jihadist organization and he was imprisoned with his comrades because of this. Why doesn’t the Jordanian state want a Salafi-Jihadist organization?
1- Salafist organizations are against Human Laws (Constitution). For them, just the Laws of Allah (From the Qur’an, Sharia) must be applied. So also they are against democracy and elections.
2- Jihadist organizations are against the Western Block and Israel. But Jordan is the most domesticated collaborator in the Middle-East for the Western Block and Israel.
After Al-Zarqawi got out from prison he didn’t want to return to the Jordanian prisons, so he moved to Afghanistan to train militants. But in 2001 the USA invaded Afghanistan, so he had to move with his comrades to Iraq to organize a Salafist organization in Iraq.
Slowly, slowly, they got contacts etc. And in 2003 USA also invaded Iraq and gave power to Shia Muslims, so the Shia’s stopped resisting immediately. And then the resistance of the Sunni Muslims started.
Why did a great hatred form between Shia and Sunni? It is not just because of religious practices. It was always different, why now? We need to look to the invasion of Iraq and how the USA changed the balances. Those who resisted most were the Salafists who came from Sunni regions and old Ba’athist soldiers-militants (From the era of Saddam Hussein, former Ba’athist dictator, and also Sunni).
For the last 10 years (2004-2014) Sunni cities and villages were bombed by the Coalition; Salafist Sunnis was in the USA prisons like Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo… So why now is there this ISIS? We have to look at these facts.
As it’s why, for the last 10 years, it has turned into ‘Religious Sect Wars’ between Shia and Sunni.
Zarqawi is a guy full of anger and militant. He had also this hatred against Shia. He organized lots of bomb attacks in markets of Shia neighbourhoods and mosques. ISIS don’t recognize western values like ‘Humanism’, ‘Civilians’. To criticise them, don’t critique with these values.
Why are they killing-torturing those who are irrelevant just for cruelty? Why are they killing irrelevant Yazidi, Christian, Alawi people, just because of what they ARE? This is the problem. Kill only those who support cruelty with their money, weapons or knowledge.
So Zarqawi’s organization joins Al-Qaeda in 2004 and names itself as ‘Al-Qaeda in Iraq’. Actually Al-Qaeda doesn’t like these attacks such as bombing Shia mosques etc. because Al-Qaeda is a ‘Global Jihad’ organization, not an ‘Anti-Shia’ organizaton. But it was like an alliance. So they accepted.
Zarqawi was killed in 2006 in a drone attack. After Zarqawi this organisaton changed into ‘Islamic State of Iraq’. Their way also changed into less ‘Global Jihad’ to more like ‘Local Islamic State’.
Until the Syrian Civil War (2011) they continued like that. And in the beginning of 2014 they declared ‘Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham’ [Islamic State in Iraq and Syria/the Levant]. The centre of Al-Qaeda was opposed to that, they didn’t recognize them. Because Al-Qaeda had already a group in Syria (Al-Nusra Front).
Also, Al-Qaeda were really against ISIS in the beginning, because ISIS is a kind of lunatic organization I can say. In Syria they killed really a lot of people just because they are ‘Alawi’ (Assad’s Regime’s religion). Or just because some Sunni Villages (not Shia or Christian) didn’t obey them (for example the villagers didn’t want to give them ‘taxes’), ISIS says these villages are not Muslim anymore! So, they say they can kill them, and then kills them.
ISIS captured the territory of Syria mostly from the Opposition powers, not from the Syrian Regime (Assad). There was huge fights, especially with Al-Nusra (Al-Qaeda), but for now they seem to make a ceasefire. Now, ISIS attacks ‘Islamic Front’ (people say it is supported by Saudi Arabia) and Rojava (West Kurdistan). After I want to explain the Kurdistan situation.
Maybe it is important to know also why there is this anger against ‘Alawi’ and ‘Assad’ regime in Syria. ‘Bashar Assad’ and his father ‘Hafez Assad’ is a Ba’ath supporter. Because of their ‘Secularism’, ‘Arab Nationalism’, their position ‘Close to the Soviets’ in those times, and for the ‘Social State’ etc. And there was an incredible pressure on Sunni organizations of Syria for the last 40 years. There was a huge Hama Massacre in 1982 against the Muslim Brotherhood of Syria.
There is a story that a Syrian told me about Hafez Assad. Hafez Assad captured a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and he didn’t kill him. Instead they injected something into his blood and this leader became a lunatic! These kinds of torture exists there for the past 40 years. I went there 4 years ago for touristic reasons actually. And nobody wanted to talk about them or the Assad family, everybody was afraid. So look what happened now.
So we come to today. The Syrian war is almost balanced nowadays, so you can look to the map:
Islamic State is mostly supported by Iraq Sunni Tribes that fought together against USA. And also those Sunni Tribes-Powers, they are enjoying having power for the first time in the last 10 years. Before 2003 they had the power in the Saddam regime. But if the Coalition forces, USA, gives more power to the Sunni Tribes, these tribes can stop their support given to Islamic State and Islamic State can fail. But they are so strong nowadays, they have 30,000 soldiers and most of them are from Iraq and Syria. Also they have petrol, water supplies etc. They are really trying to organize a State. With police, with laws, with the control of the public, with municipality.
OK, maybe this is the most important part. Why is the Islamic State attacking Rojava-Kobane? In the West and Kurdistan, people say ‘because Rojava is building a libertarian-gender freedom society’, ‘direct democracy-autonomy’ etc. It is true in Rojava these things are happening, probably you also know that.
Some powers (for example the Turkish State) can really get disturbed by the changes, but the motivation of the Islamic State is not these topics. Actually ISIS are attacking everywhere. Shia, Alawi, Kurdish, Yizidi, Christian, Sunni, Arab, ‘Free Syrian Army’, ‘Islamic Front’, ‘Al-Nusra’, ‘Ahraus Sham (Another Salafist organization), ‘Assad Regime’, ‘Iraq Army’, ‘Barzani State’ (North Iraq) etc. So they are a kind of ‘Nihilist Islamic State’.
They are attacking Kobane because, as you can see in the map, there is not so much place to attack any more, as there are ‘natural borders’ nowadays. There is a kind of balance. So they want to invade wherever they can.
What does the PKK [Kurdish People’s Party] want? Of course they want to save Kobane and the surrounding villages. And for this they want a safe corridor (arms, militants, other supplies etc.) from Turkey for Kobane.
For the last 2 years (from the end of 2012, until now) there is a ‘peace progress’ between PKK and Turkish State. And both sides don’t want to break it. But Kobane was like a ‘boiling point’ for PKK. And called a Serhıldan (Kurdish word for Intifada) for Kobane.
It was an incredible revolt, and even the PKK didn’t want this much. The most intense period was 6-7-8 October (2014). Now I will write what happened in those 2-3 days, these actions were everywhere in Turkey actually but mostly in Kurdistan cities like Diyarbakır, Şırnak, Hakkari, Muş, Siirt, Urfa… but also ghettos of Istanbul like Bağcılar, Esenyurt, Sultangazi, Küçükçekmece, Esenler where Kurdish people are mostly living.
Also there were actions for the last 1 month on the border of Kobane, Turkish side Suruç, but after PKK made a call not just the border side, but everywhere burned in Turkey, especially Kurdistan.
1- 212 schools are damaged and burned. This is not a joke. School yes. School. Kurdish youth hate schools. If you want to check videos-images search ‘kobane okul yaktılar’ it means ‘kobane burned school’.
Click here for news from 1 month ago. Again youths burned down 3 schools in Cizre.
2- 190 banks are damaged and burned. And of course ATM’s.
3- 340 private cars, 216 official cars are burned. If you want to check videos-images search ‘kobane araçları yaktılar’ it means ‘kobane burned cars’
4- Lots of supermarkets are burned down, also looted. Search ‘kobane süpermarket yakıldı’.
5- At least 80 official buildings like the municipality, party bureaus, administrative buildings etc. are burned.
6- 67 police stations are damaged.
7- Some Kurdish Hezbollah (don’t mix them up with the Lebanon Hezbollah, they are different) militants are killed by PKK youth. Some of them got stoned to death and burned. Kurdish people are really, really, angry at these people because the in 1990’s Kurdish Hezbollah worked with the State and killed really a lot of PKK militants. Now this Hezbollah are working in the ‘legal’ area and are still making propaganda against PKK.
And, of course, more than 20 Kurdish young people are killed by police and the military. And in lots of cities, military came to the streets, not the police. Police couldn’t control it any more.
Also, lots of Turkish Flags, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk statues (founder of the Turkish Republic) are burned down by Kurdish youth. So Turkish media really used this stuff against them. After these 2-3 days even PKK made a declaration that ‘we don’t agree with actions like burning flags, statues, schools, supermarkets etc.. Those who made these actions are provocateurs’. Yes, PKK said something like that.
It was a huge revolt really, also because the youth were filled with anger. Because of this ‘peace progress’ and especially the massacre against Yizidi people (done by the Islamic State, and they take responsibility for it.) and finally ‘Kobane’. Also, the youth organized really good actually. They were not ’empty handed’.
Why did PKK made a call? To make pressure on the Turkish State to open the borders, a safe corridor to help the YPG-YPJ. Or at least make Turkish state ‘turn a blind eye’, like how they are closing their eyes to IS militants. The call was also to make the Turkish State arrest and don’t let Islamic State militants pass from the Turkish borders.
But as I said, Kurdish youth (as an organization, YDG-H, youth movement of
PKK. But those who made those actions they are not all organized.) did more than the PKK expected.
But I don’t know what will happen from now on. We will see. PKK made a
move, Turkish State killed and arrested many of those who made this uprising that they could, but this is not a new move of the state, this is what state does normally.
This entry was posted on Monday, October 13th, 2014 at 2:29 pm and is filed under Anti-Fascist.