Newsletter #17 – English

Dear friends and comrades,

Here is our newsletter reviewing the months of February, March and April and once again a lot has happen during this time. In the following, we want to share with you some of the publications of the Internationalist Commune, of Make Rojava Green Again, and of the campaign RiseUp4Rojava as well as a short political analysis of the situation.

As described there after, the situation is again starting to be tense, and it is essential to research and understand the plans of our enemies. For a more in depth analysis of the powers facing each other in the region and of their goals, we already shared a long texts exploring the imperialist plans, diplomatic games and the revolutionary resistance against the Turkish invasion of Rojava. Soon, we plan to produce a second part to it to comment on the new developments that appeared since then.

# Current Political Situation – Increasing Turkish attacks and pressure

After the invasion of the cities and region of Serkekaniye and Gire Spî at the end of 2019 and the tense months that followed, we are now entering a new “cold” phase of the conflict where special warfare is deployed (even though the regions of Shehba, Minbic, Ain Issa and Till Temir are regularly bombed). Indeed, the war never stops: it alternates on the one hand between intense phases of fast military confrontations that lead to exchanges in territories and on the other hand of phases of low military actions but high diplomatic and intelligence work. These latter phases are used by our enemies (i.e. the Turkish state and the imperialist capitalist powers like the US and Russia who stand behind it) to legitimate their future actions by building new narrative. Therefore, we also have to understand those low intensity war times as times to prepare ourselves against the next invasion: spreading the world about what is happening, opposing their falsification of reality, and organizing our local resistance.

The actions of Turkey of those last months are full of signs that they are preparing the next attacks on Rojava. Also, the war between the Syrian Regime and Turkish proxies and soldiers for Idlib and in the Aleppo region shows the will of Turkey not only to implement their so-called “peace corridor” but to annex a large part of Syria that they see as Turkish soil according the Missak-i-Milli (National Pact, the political of the Turkish nationalist movement at the beginning of the 20th century that Erdogan still claims to follow in official meetings and on the presidential website). Since the cease-fire has been declared in Idlib, Turkey is again turning its attention toward Rojava and the Kurdish Liberation Movement. As it was done the exact same way in the spring of last year, they have recently shelled and bombed the region of Shehba – the last free region of the Afrin canton where lots of refugees are now living – while amassing their jihadist militias around it and reinforcing their military presence in Idlib as well. Shehba is therefore threatened with attack on many different sides and could be the next region on the line. Also like last year, Turkish air planes bombed the refuge camp of Makhmur in Iraq – a camp where democratic confederalism has been put to practice and close to the movement – causing the death of civilians. Besides, KDP forces (nationalist Kurdish movement of Northern Iraq, puppets of the US, and collaborating with the Turkish state) where brought under Turkish air protection in PUK (other nationalist Kurdish movement of Northern Iraq, controlling the region of Hewler) controlled regions which is the door of the Qandil mountains held by the guerrilla forces of the Kurdish Liberation Movement. This move is clearly to provoke a degradation of the relations – already tense – between the Kurdish parties. But more important, the occupation of this region would compromise the moves of the guerrilla and put in danger the Quandil region, seat of numerous organization fighting for democratic modernity. As those organizations are today leading the fight against capitalist modernity, an attack on them would endanger the global fight for freedom in Rojava and on a world-wide level.

In all those actions, we clearly see an attack on democratic confederalism everywhere. The actions are carried by Turkish troops and proxies or by the nationalist and regressive KDP party, but it could never be implemented without the agreement of either the US or Russia. They allow it and furthermore also push for it. It is a permanent attack from the capitalist modernity forces on the achievement of the Revolution.

As part of the forces struggling for democratic modernity, we need to prepare ourselves for the next offensive.

# Corona crisis – The Autonomous Administration and Responses to Crisis

As it is still the case in lots of countries around the world, the curfew in the Autonomous Administration (AA) is holding for around four weeks. As for now it has been possible to prevent the spread of the corona virus in the region though the 1st death of corona has been reported in the region. But would the virus spread, it would have disastrous effects aggravating the already precarious situation before the pandemic caused by the ongoing attacks of the Turkish state, the embargo and the destruction and damaging of hospitals by shelling and bombs. Workers at a textile cooperative producing masks.

How does the AA – with almost no international support and despite its already precarious situation – manage to keep the virus into control? First of course thanks to the precautionary curfew and the disinfection work made by the municipalities, but also because of the nature of the political system of the region as describes in the very good article of Meghan Bodette on The Autonomous Administration and Responses to Crisis. Between the factors, the participation of the population and the respect of the curfew surely has its role next to: 1) the textile and agricultural cooperatives: small to bigger tailors joined together to produce a massive amount of masks and medical scrubs to spread for free in the population, 2) the commune system: food and soap distribution in the neighborhoods for people in need. In Rojava, nobody’s left alone.

This approach to the Corona crisis clashes with the approach of Europe and some other countries around the world where the crisis has been answered in the most authoritarian way. Not even talking about the multiple nation-states who used the situation as a good opportunity to pass some new laws to strengthen their control over their citizens. But the worse is the coming trend of them to push for a restart of the economic and business activity despite the risk of the spread of the virus, i.e. saying: economy worth more than the life of the people.

# Corona Crisis n°2 – A turning point in our reality, the necessity of solidarity, organizing as the only way out.

As described in the article of Make Rojava Green Again the corona crisis has brought an unprecedented situation affecting the whole planet and did the almost impossible: stopping the gigantic course of the capitalist system. How long will it continue? What will be the consequences on our life? Those questions are still pending as economists are talking about a recession worse than the one of 1929. A start of an answer is proposed in the Komun Academy article Is everything going to be alright again? Between the sure thing is that the poorest will once again pay the biggest price. As the WEF is already predicting, many people will lose their jobs, the ones with less will be more affected and the poorest countries being more impacted by it.

Against this crisis, our only solution is solidarity. Since the the spread of the virus, initiatives are sprouting everywhere as shown in three articles of the Komun Academy Mutual aid and solidarity against Covid-19: Interviews with political organizers (I); (II) and (III). Together, other ways of living are possible!

#Make Rojava Green Again – New picture gallery

In the last months of war and evacuation, we were not able to do practical work. Coming back to the Internationalist Commune, a lot had to be done. Taking care of our trees, pruning them, planting some new ones, preparing willow cuttings for the reforestation of the river below the Commune, planting vegetables, … You can find it all presented in our new Gallery on the Make Rojava Green Again Website.

# Reflections and perspectives from and for the revolution

This new year saw again the start of an education at the Academy Sehid Hêlîn Qereçox of Commune followed by the visit of key places and institutions of the Autonomous Administration of North-Eastern Syria. After the conclusion of it, some friends shared their thoughts in different articles as The Role of the Revolutionary Youth in Til Temir and It’s A Small World – Internationalism In Our Time. Another text – From Raqqa to Kobane, from colonial past till today’s flourishing of the revolution – explores the colonized past of the region through the example of the Two Stolen Lions of Kobane and about Women’s Liberation through the Women’s Council of the city of Raqqa. The Commune also gave an interview to the Komun Academy describing our project and aims.

Some German comrades also wrote about the history of resistance in central Europe and today’s Germany. their search for this almost lost quest is inspired by the Kurdish freedom movement. In it, thy explain how The way to Rojava [was] a way back to [their] own history.

# Adullah Ocalan 71st birthday – Free Ocalan! Free them all!

On the 4th April, Abdullah Ocalan’s birthday, members of the Internationalist Commune joined people around the globe in calling for his release. We also called for the release of all other political prisoners, and drew attention to the cases individual prisoners, and the campaigns to support them. We published a set of pictures under the call Free Ocalan! Free them all!.

On the same day, we planted 71 trees on the commune website to pay tribute to this incredible philosopher and inspiration of the Kurdish Freedom Movement and of the Rojava democratic confederalism project. In our article The 4th of April: anniversary of Abdullah Ocalan and of the fight for freedom we explain what is the meaning of this celebration and what does it represents for us internationalist. To celebrate the 4th of April is celebrating a great revolutionary, a socialist leader and a central Mesopotamian philosopher but also celebrating all revolutionaries and our common revolutionary historical heritage.

# RiseUp4Rojava

The RiseUp4Rojava campaign has become an important reference point for many people who feel connected to the Rojava revolution and who defend its achievements. Especially in the last war time  and during the fierce attacks on Rojava, the campaign made the global solidarity with the revolution visible and united the democratic forces against Turkish fascism and the occupation of Rojava. With the first day of the war of aggression, hundreds of actions started all over the world. It was impossible to document and record them all, but we documented the first 6 weeks of resistance.
And thousands of people followed the call of RiseUp4Rojava for the global day of resistance for Rojava under the motto: “The revolution in North-East Syria will win, fascism will be crushed!

# Keep updated and spread the word – media channels on the Rojava Revolution

The war in Kurdistan is always also a war for public opinion. If nobody’s looking, the leader of Capitalist Modernity and the fascist Turkey will for sure not hesitate a second to liquidate the Revolution. But if people are following the situation, spreading the news and organizing resistance, it represents a very important pressure that maybe cannot change everything by itself, but surely changes the diplomatic situation.

Therefore, we want to share some pages with you, where you can get information in different languages about the developments in Rojava, Kurdistan and the defense of the revolution in Europe.

ANF https://anfenglishmobile.com

Rojava Information Center https://rojavainformationcenter.com/

RiseUp4Rojava https://riseup4rojava.org
Twitter: @RISEUP4R0JAVA

Women Defend Rojava https://womendefendrojava.net
Twitter: @starrcongress

Internationalist Commune https://internationalistcommune.com/
Twitter: @CommuneInt

Make Rojava Green Again https://makerojavagreenagain.org/
Twitter: @GreenRojava

# Supporting the Internationalist Commune

We, as the Internationalist Commune with members from many regions of the world, see ourselves as part of the worldwide democratic, ecological and feminist movement. In this sense, we also invite everyone to become a part of the work of the Internationalist Commune and to support the work here.

Riseup4Rojava and the Internationalist Commune of Rojava recently published calendars which have now been published and should have been sold at events like the Newroz festival – instead, calendars can now be ordered online. The proceeds will be used to finance a soon to be published brochure about the resistance in Girê Spî and Serêkaniyê (The calendar is based on Newroz – it runs from March 2020 to March 2021).

We would like to thank all those who contributed with their donations, translations, transcriptions and much more to the success of the work of the Internationalist Commune and of Make Rojava Green Again.

Revolutionary greetings,

Internationalist Commune of Rojava
and Make Rojava Green Again
April 2020