You can read 9 more articles this month
TO MARK the victory over Isis in its de facto capital Raqqa, members of the International Freedom Battalion (IFB), an alliance of left-wing groups fighting alongside the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), recreated the famous 1945 photo of the Red Army on the Reichstag.
Speaking under the name the codename Serhildan 21, an IFB member from London, told the Star he saw the two victories as connected.
“When the red flag flew over Berlin, it was the symbol of victory over nazi-fascism. We consider Raqqa to mean the defeat of Isis-fascism and ourselves to be in the same communist tradition as the liberating troops.”
He says that the IFB was at the forefront of the fighting. Ten of their members died in 2017, making it their bloodiest but also most successful year.
“The IFB concept came to fruition, with comrades from every corner of the world joining us. We have set a new paradigm in internationalism.”
Tekosin, an Irish volunteer in his late twenties, mourned the death of two non-members who he said had become very close to the IFB.
“Jac Holmes rolled out with us on many operations as a sniper. He came to our position to eat dinner with us the night before he died.”
Holmes, 24, from Bournemouth, had been with the YPG for two years when he was killed by an Isis booby trap in Raqqa. The unit was also friends with London-based Kurdish filmmaker Mehmet Aksoy, who died in an Isis counter attack.
“He often came for dinner and long political discussions. He had an infectious hopefulness about him, a true revolutionary like us.”
It is unclear what the future holds for the IFB or the area of Syria which they defend, known as Rojava.
Returning volunteers have been arrested and several young people have been arrested attempting to leave Britain to volunteer.
The Foreign Office advises against all travel to Syria.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.