A fighter from the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) participates in a demonstration in Qamishli on December 28, 2018 against threats from Turkey to carry out a fresh offensive following the US decision to withdraw their troops. Photo: Delil Souleiman/AFP
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – A Kurdish military commander who fought ISIS alongside the coalition says the United States is ignoring the value of comradeship as they leave Syria early, exposing the People’s Protection Units (YPG) to a Turkish assault.
The YPG have been fighting terror groups since 2012, forming alliances with Arab, Syriac, and other neighbours, and building a society that could offer safe haven to persecuted groups including Christians and Yezidis, wrote senior YPG commander Polat Can in a column for The Defense Post on Friday.
They have lost 8,000 of their fighters in that conflict, he said.
To abandon your allies who are still fighting the war is not “ethical nor logical,” he said, adding that the coalition has a duty to not turn their back on their fellow soldiers.
Similarly, he argued, the international community has a duty to the Kurds and the people of northern Syria who fought terror to make the world a safer place.
Kurds, who were persecuted for decades under the Baathist regime of Bashar al-Assad and his father before him, have earned the right to be treated with respect, he said.
“Today, after all the suffering and tragedies of our people and the other peoples in the region, after we fought a brutal war for seven years, and after losing thousands of martyrs, wounded and displaced, we have earned the right to our freedom, and to be respected by international organizations, great countries and world powers,” wrote Can.
“It is the responsibility of the world to repay the Kurdish people and the rest of the peoples of the region.”