[Marxism] Have the Syrian Kurds Committed War Crimes?
mkaradjis at gmail.com
Thu Feb 9 03:02:25 MST 2017
This report sounds pretty damning. Not sure how much I trust all the
allegations of PYD-Iran collaboration, or especially of PYD-ISIS
collaboration; and the claim that thousands of Kurds take refuge in
Turkey to evade YPG conscription, rather than to avoid war, seems
far-fetched (and in any case, not backed up in this article at least);
but the large-scale abuses seem fairly well-documented.
Have the Syrian Kurds Committed War Crimes?
This special report, which also exposes their collusion with the Assad
regime, undermines their claim to be leading a democratic, open society.
By Roy Gutman
Yesterday 3:39 pm
AKCAKALE, TURKEY—The Kurdish militia that supplies the ground troops in
the US air war against the Islamic State has been a systematic violator
of human rights in the area it controls in northern Syria, causing the
displacement of tens of thousands of Arabs and even more massive flight
by Kurds from the region.
This is the first of a two-part investigation, which was supported by
the Fund for Investigative Journalism.
A six-month investigation shows that the militia, reportedly under the
strong influence of Iran and the Assad regime, has evicted Arabs from
their homes at gunpoint starting in 2013 and subsequently has blown up,
torched, or bulldozed their homes and villages. The Nation interviewed
more than 80 Arabs and Syrian Kurdish refugees in the region as well as
militia officials, former militia members, former Syrian government
officials, political activists, and officials in Iraqi Kurdistan.
The pace of the expulsions picked up dramatically after the United
States began joint operations against the Islamic State in Syria in
mid-2015, as the Kurdish militia threatened Arabs with air strikes if
they didn’t leave their villages. While they slowed in 2016, expulsions
continue even as the militia turns on its political rivals and jails,
tortures, or expels them.
The YPG denies any wrongdoing. “Expulsions never happened in the past
and they will not happen in the future,” said Sihanouk Dibo, a spokesman
and senior adviser for the Democratic Union Party (PYD), the political
wing of the YPG. He said the alliance between the YPG and the (US-led)
international coalition against ISIS “is another reason why such
violations can’t happen.”
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