The Battle for Kobani is a Historic Struggle between the Past and the Future



David Morgan, Peace in Kurdistan Campaign, 7 October 2014

President Erdogan of Turkey has said “For us the PKK is the same as Isis. It is wrong to consider them in different ways.” What a clear admission of cynical collaboration with what President Obama, David Cameron, President Hollande and others, have all described as the greatest threat to the world – namely ISIS.

Turkey’s conduct during the current crisis in Kobani is further proof of Ankara’s cooperation with ISIS to advance its own political aims – to defeat the Kurds.

Hypocrisy and duplicity in foreign policy are nothing new – the only change now is that these manoeuvres can no longer be concealed from public view. The crimes against Kobani and the Kurds are now unfolding before the eyes of the world thanks to the Internet. The guilt of Turkey and by extension its Nato allies is exposed for all to witness.

It is no accident that Turkish troops fire teargas at journalists seeking to report on the events in Kobane. The BBC film crew has been fired on at point blank range twice. The Turks have also arrested several reporters. They are trying to hide their shameful actions, but they are failing.

The real question to ask is why Western powers are holding back? Certainly Western intelligence is fully aware of what is going on. It is playing out on all our TV screens so how could they not be aware?

The implications of this policy are utterly dreadful – it means stifling freedom and genuine democracy in the Mideast. The US and EU are now standing against democracy – understandably lots of well meaning people don’t want to admit this. It is very difficult to accept the hard facts because they are just too ugly to conceive. If the Western powers don’t stand for freedom, democracy, gender equality and government by popular consent, – which is what Kobani and Rojava represent – then what do they really stand for? Alliances of convenience with friendly tyrants, free markets but unfree people, oppression of women, the weak and the poor to increase profit? Seems so. They are imposing a system on the world that benefits only billionaires, corporations and bankers, leaving the rest of us subject to conditions of penury and virtual slavery. The Kurds of Kobani and Rojava are standing in the frontline against this “new world order”.

But the West are gravely miscalculating in the longer term: they cannot hold down the people’s aspirations for freedom and democracy forever. It is time they realised that they are standing on the wrong side of history and make some radical readjustments in their thinking even at this late hour. A world without justice for all is not a world most people want to live in.

The Kurds in Kobani are fighting not just for themselves but for the whole of humanity; they are fighting for justice, freedom, equal rights for women, respect for minority rights and a better life for all. It is in our interests to support them.

 

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