Category Archives: Syria

Syria: Cultural Autonomy and the Risks of a Late Negotiation

By Carlos Rocabado: The draft Constitution prepared by Russia gives new hopes to Kurds on their demand for autonomy. It is not the federal scenario some expect, and of course it has nothing to do with dubious separatist wishes, but it is a step in the right direction: the acknowledgement of a long time ignored…

How Assad Won

By Manish Rai: President Bashar Al-Assad is starting to look like he will survive the uprising, even in the estimation of some of his staunchest opponents. It is a reality that almost everyone agrees to that the Syrian regime has revealed an extraordinary ability to survive. Despite the blows it has sustained in the initial…

Support the Pluralist SDF and Stop Turkey!

By Rebwar Rashed: Back in November, 2014, Mr. Michael Rubin explained wisely, “Here’s why training moderate Syrian rebels in Turkey is a bad idea”.  The article is still good reading for those who need a better understanding of Turkey, the so-called “Moderate Islamists” and how to ensure a Syria without dictatorship. On October 9th 2015, Michael…

‘Syria Won’t Return to Dictatorship Post War’ – Salih Muslim

Mr Salih Muslim is co-president of the Democratic Union Party or PYD. The PYD is one of the most dominant players in Syria; currently this is mostly because of its control over that most effective and formidable Kurdish militia YPG/YPJ, significant popular support, and its effective organization. In an exclusive interview with Manish Rai, Editor,…

Kurds Can’t be Ignored in Post-War Syria

By Manish Rai: The start of the Syrian civil war in 2011 gave the historically marginalized Kurds their first real chance to assert their autonomy and to become a political powerhouse. Syrian Kurdish society now strongly feels that they can reverse the last half-century of assimilationist pressures and revive their cultural heritage and get their…

Sheikh Maksud: The Barometer For Syria

By Dr Jan Best de Vries: From the beginning of the so-called civil war in Syria in 2012, the Kurdish civilian inhabitants of Aleppo’s northern district Sheikh Maksud have during the last five years been protected by the YPJ and YPG against attacks from both Hezbollah and salafist rebels supported by Turkey. Conflicts between the…

Fall of Aleppo May Initiate End of Revolution

By Manish Rai: After reclaiming almost all of Aleppo, Syria’s former commercial capital, President Assad has got his biggest prize of the war. It puts his forces in control of the country’s four largest cities as well as the coastal region, and cap a year of steady government advances. It should be remembered that more…

Why Diplomacy is Failing in Syria

By Manish Rai: There have been multiple diplomatic efforts to resolve the Syrian conflict since it erupted in 2011 but all have ended in vain. Recently as well no agreement was reached or set out in a final document at the ministerial meeting on Syria held in the Swiss lakeside city of Lausanne. It proved…

Syria’s Not So Civil War Explained – Neither in 2011 Nor a Sectarian War: Qatar-Turkey Gas Pipeline Design

By Dr. Koohzad: Many mainstream media reports, and even scholarly research works, mistakenly call the War on Syria a “Civil War.” They also believe that the war began in 2011, and is a sectarian conflict mainly between the Sunni and Shia sects of Islam. None of these three claims is true. The following arguments and…

Syrian Refugees Looking For a Way Back

By Manish Rai: The Syria conflict has sparked the world’s largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. Humanitarian needs continue to rise, population displacements are increasing, and an entire generation of children is being exposed to war and violence, increasingly deprived of basic services, education and protection. The increasing intensity of the war, failing diplomacy…

Support a Federal State or a Democratic Confederate States of Syria!

Rebwar Reshid

By Rebwar Rashed: Authoritarianism, dictatorship, centralism, ethnic aggressive nationalism and racism have been the history of the Middle East in the past hundred years since the Sykes-Picot agreement. Countries in the upper Middle East, such as Turkey, Iran, Syria and Iraq have always been shifting between various dictatorships and fascistic regimes. The fact that there…

Kurds the Betrayed Race

By Manish Rai: The Kurds as we know, thanks to the Sykes-Picot order which drafted the modern-day map of the Middle-East after World War I, are the largest stateless people in the world, spread between four nations in the region— Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey, along with a wider Kurdish diaspora spread mostly across Europe….

The Region’s Two Triangles and the Future of the Kurds

By Saman Shali, Ph.D., former President of Kurdish National Congress in North America (KNC): One could reasonably say that many countries of the Middle East, especially, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, have recently been enjoying a period of political and economic peace and tranquility. It can also be said that these states have enjoyed a…

A Tank Is Clearly Visible

By Dr Jan Best de Vries: On Syrian soil Turkish tanks are deployed. The question is who is going to stop these and how. On the ground Islamic State (IS) and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) are Mr Erdogan’s proclaimed targets but the  SDF is unlikely to have enough anti-tank missiles to deal with them…

World’s Democracies Must Support Kurds in Rojava Now!

Rebwar Reshid

By Rebwar Rashed: How often do not the Turkish president Erdogan and his prime minister Ben Ali Yldirim lift their forefingers to threaten Kurds and repeat: We are not allowing a Kurdish entity on our border? As a matter of fact, Erdogan, especially after the collapse of his neo-Ottoman dreams of occupying Kurdish lands and…