Iraq

A fair referendum for Kurdistan

Author: 

Worker-Communist Party of Kurdistan

A referendum is going to be held on 25 September within the Kurdish region of Iraq and the Kurdish populated areas outside the administrative authority of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).

Kurdistan remains a stateless land; not recognised as a state and also not a part of any other state.

Around the world: 

Publications: 

Letter: PYD democracy lacking

Author: 

Dan Katz

Riki Lane writes about PYD rule in Rojava (Solidarity 444), “Overall this is essentially standard bourgeois democracy, but with a strong emphasis on bottom-up democratic development of a social economy.”

The PYD is an off-shoot of the Turkish Kurdish PKK, which remains a militarised Stalinist-nationalist party.

Around the world: 

Publications: 

A discussion on Rojava politics

Author: 

Riki Lane

Like many leftists (and liberals) around the world, I drew great inspiration from the struggle against Daesh in Kobane, Northern Syria, by Kurdish forces of the YPG/YPJ associated with the PYD. Iconic images of women fighters defeating Islamist fundamentalists carried a strong message of the power of collective organisation by working people. Many leftists, including Australia’s Socialist Alliance (SA), laud them as a beacon of hope. However, I am still critical of the claims that the PYD/PKK etc. represent a genuine working class alternative.

A report from the Rojava Revolution conference in Melbourne.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

Around the world: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Iraq takes back Mosul

Author: 

Simon Nelson

After 10 months of fighting the Iraqi government has officially declared victory against Daesh in Mosul.

The Iraqi army has already begun a process of vetting Mosul’s remaining residents, seeking out links with Daesh. Disappearances have been reported. Thousands of refugees remain in camps across northern Iraq, and thousands more are internally displaced.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Around the world: 

Publications: 

US coalition moves on Raqqa

Author: 

Simon Nelson

After several months of deadlock, the US-led operation with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) to take Raqqa has begun. Lama Fakih the Middle East director at Human Rights rightly points out, “The battle for Raqqa is not just about defeating ISIS, but also about protecting and assisting the civilians who have suffered under ISIS rule for three and a half years.”

Raqqa is the Caliphate’s capital, and the destruction of Daesh there would be highly symbolic. As in Mosul, the defeat of Daesh should be welcomed. However it there are real and serious misgivings about the forces that will undertake the operation. We should have no faith in the combination of militias and the US to respect the interests of the civilian population.

Around the world: 

Publications: 

Saudi Arabia tries to push Qatar into line

Author: 

Dan Katz

A simmering conflict between the Gulf State of Qatar and its larger neighbour, Saudi Arabia, has abruptly flared into an open, serious stand-off.

Beginning on 5 June, a Saudi-led grouping of states including Egypt, Bahrain and UAE broke off diplomatic relations, and implemented travel and trade bans against Qatar. Qatar has said it will not retaliate.Saudi Arabia has closed Qatar’s only land border and ordered its citizens to leave Qatar.

The Saudis seem to believe that Qatar is also aiding or sheltering Saudi oppositionists.In fact both the contending states — Qatar and Saudi Arabia — have funded extremist Sunni militias in the Syrian civil war and elsewhere. The Saudis have also provided billions of dollars to fund fundamentalist, Wahhabi-aligned mosques across the world which have been an ideological breeding ground for jihadist groups. And much funding for Daesh (IS) and al-Qaeda comes from individuals in Saudi Arabia — something the Saudis have failed to prevent.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Around the world: 

Publications: 

Is Corbyn right on terrorism?

Author: 

Clive Bradley

“Jeremy Corbyn has said that terror attacks in Britain are our own fault,” claimed Theresa May on Friday. “I want to make something clear… there can never be an excuse for terrorism, there can be no excuse for what happened in Manchester.”

To explain the growth of Islamism in Europe, one needs to look at more than “Western policy”, but, as part of a wider, nuanced explanation, foreign policy plays its part.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Publications: 

Around the world: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Manning finally free

Author: 

Simon Nelson

Chelsea Manning was released from Fort Leavenworth, the maximum security prison on 18 May, after seven years of harassment, brutality and enforced solitary confinement.

Manning was sentenced in August 2013 for leaking classified wire cables and military records to WikiLeaks. At the time she was a military intelligence analyst and for slightly bizarre reasons will remain classified as a member of the military for a period after her release.

Chelsea Manning’s crime was only to expose the inner workings of US imperialism where, through both its diplomatic relations and areas of its military manoeuvres, civilian life is treated purely as “collateral damage”.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Around the world: 

Publications: 

Pages