There will be a rally in solidarity with the people of Rojava and against the Turkish invasion held this Saturday, October 12 from 11:00AM-1:00PM in Albany’s Townsend Park. This event was organized by the Friends of Rojava in Upstate NY in response to the international call to action in support of our Kurdish allies and the Rojava Revolution. While our government is looking away from the war crimes and atrocities that the Turkish government and military is wreaking upon innocent civilians as well as providing ISIS the means to return to power and regain a foothold within the area once again, Kurdish and other democratic and revolutionary forces are defending their land, their way of life and their revolution. This cannot be ignored.
Seven years ago, in the midst of the chaos surrounding the Syrian civil war and the rise of ISIS, a revolution erupted in Rojava (also known as Western Kurdistan or Northern Syria). Millions of people – Kurds, Arabs, and a multitude of ethnic and religious groups – worked together to create a society rooted in concepts of mutual aid, direct democracy, communes and cooperatives. Both the fighting against ISIS and the social revolution were led largely by women, in what can be described as a feminist, ecological and communalist revolution. The Rojava Revolution is an example not just for the Middle East, but the entire world, of what an alternative society can look like. Over 10,000 Kurdish and other revolutionaries gave their lives to both create this new society and defeat ISIS in the process. Even local activists traveled to Rojava and volunteered to defend the revolution. One of them, Robert Grodt, was tragically killed while fighting ISIS during the battle of Raqqa. We will not let any of these deaths be in vain.
Trump’s decision to pull out US troops from the border region in Northern Syria gave a green light to the Turkish military to invade. This invasion is central to a longer project of genocide against Kurdish people. It not only threatens the very fabric of the revolution, but will lead to the displacement of many people, and assist in initiating the rise of ISIS yet again.
The network – Friends of Rojava in Upstate NY – was recently formed to connect activists and groups across the region who support the Rojava revolution. The Black Rose Anarchist Federation local in Albany/Troy and the Albany General Defense Committee are also cosponsoring the protest. We will be holding the rally to shed light and bring to the forefront the treatment of the Kurds and will be holding a vigil as a way to show our support to our Kurdish allies, those who fight alongside them, and the Rojava Revolution.