Tag Archives: Peshmerga

Urgent Appeal to International Community from Kobane Officials

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Horrifying Image of Devastation in Kobane

While the historical resistance of the People Protection Units (YPG) and the Women Protection Units (YPJ) continues against Daash terrorists, making a major victory with their heroic steadfastness, the rubble of destruction and devastation throughout the city increases.

Moreover, the negative effects of the war on Kobane civilians from children, women and elderly people accumulate either inside the city or on the boarder points with Turkey.

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Children are living under tough circumstances in Kobane

Therefore, the possibility of living and pursue life almost become impossible and even warn of an impending humanitarian disaster. Especially hard coldness of winter and spreading of residues harmful projectiles further endanger lives of human and other beings.

But, despite the destruction and devastation of Kobane Canton, its resistance takes a global and humanitarian dimensions beyond its borders, reflecting the human values and objectives. The sacrifices of its heroes and defenders become general humanitarian gains that turn their steadfast city to a global defender front for the international community and humanity as whole.

The above mentioned impose on everyone’s duty to support and provide help to them as long as the security and safety of all of us in danger.

The Executive Council in Kobane Canton salutes the heroic resistance of YPG, YPJ, Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Peshmerga forces against Daash in an ordinary meeting today.

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Kobane Defense Chief General Ismet Hasan and Peshmerga Commander General Ahmed Gerdi

The Council members appreciate sacrifices of the mentioned common forces and salute their bravery and honest commitment to defend the noble humanitarian values and their strenuously quest to build a democratic, fair and equal society, which shares peace and tranquility regionally and globally.

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Kobane Children Are Under Threat of Continues ISIS Shelling

The Council members, at the same time, saddened with the  global indifference towards Kobane, expressing their deep regret for the failure of the humanitarian organizations and democratic countries to the worsening humanitarian situation where Kobane civilians exposed from all sides to instantaneous indiscriminate shells and continuing attacks of Daash, killing and injuring many of them.

In addition to, great challenges left by the suffocating siege on the province, making providing life means and its essential things impossible. With the gradual disappear from the stocks of food, medicine and baby milk of warehouses or destroy completely by bomb shelling.

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Dr. Welat Omer and Medical Team Delivering Aid to Displaced Kobane Residents

So, there is possibility of a humanitarian catastrophe against civilians if the international community does not take the initiative to meet the calls of our citizens and defenders to open a safe humanitarian corridor to cleanse the effects of missiles, bombings and the rubble of destruction.

We appeal international community to make very effort to save the lives of children and other civilians by offering them through support and aid of medical, food and preventive fundamentals.

Kobane 19/12/2014

The Executive Board of Kobane Canton, Syria

Gazeteci Zara Misto: YPG IŞİD ile Mücadelede Tüm Dünyayı Temsil Ediyor

Kobane_YPG

Kobanê’nin tanınmış gazetecilerinden, ENKS’ye yakınlığı ile bilinen www.Welati.net haber sitesinin editörü Zara Misto ile şehirdeki durumu görüştük.

Mutlu Çiviroğlu https://twitter.com/mutludc

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Sayın Zara Misto, sizin açınızdan Kobanê genel olarak nasıl görünüyor?

Çatışmalar iki ayı aşkın süredir devam ediyor. Kürt güçleri ciddi ilerleme kaydediyor ve IŞİD’e Rakka’dan Mınbıc’den sürekli destek gelmesine rağmen IŞİD büyük bir moral kaybına uğramış durumda. Kobanê’nin %25-30lik bir kısmı halen IŞİD’in elinde. Doğu tarafında belli hâkimiyetleri var ama Kürt güçlerinin stratejik saldırıları IŞİD’e büyük kayıplar verdiriyor, yüzlerce kişi öldürüldü onlardan, binlerce yaralıları var. Tabi Kürtlerin de 200’den fazla şehidi ve birçok yaralısı var ki bu büyük bir direnişin sembolü.

YPG’nin yürüttüğü son taktik yeni bir yer almaktan ziyade onların saldırılarını bekleyip onlardan çok kişi öldürmek üzerineydi. Bu taktik başarılı bir şekilde işledi, onlar saldırdıkça çok sayıda kayıp verdiler. İşte gözle görülür bir şekilde geri çekilmemelerinin sebebi şehirde bir sokak savaşının olması. Halep örneğinden de anlaşılacağı gibi bütün Suriye şehirlerinde aynı şey yaşanıyor. IŞİD üç taraftan kuşattığı, toplar ve tanklarla saldırdığı şehri kısa bir sürede kontrolü altına almayı planlıyordu, şehri henüz kontrolü altına alamaması da YPG’nin büyük başarısı gerçekten. Hem belirttiğim gibi Kürt güçleri birkaç yeni noktayı ele geçirdi. IŞİD intihar saldırıları ve diğer vahşi saldırılarla ilerlemek istedi ama başaramadı.

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Kamuoyu başarıyı yeni bir yerin kontrol altına alınmasına bağlıyor. Fakat siz asıl meselenin IŞİD’e kayıp verdirmek olduğunu söylüyorsunuz. Yani YPG vur-kaç taktiği uyguluyor, doğru anlaşıldı mı acaba?

Evet, vur-kaç taktiği uygulanıyor. Dün bu taktikle onlara ağır darbe indirildikten sonra yeni yerler kontrol altına alındı. Burada başka bir şey de eklemek istiyorum: IŞİD’in çekildiği bazı yerlerde bombaların patlama tehlikesi var, pusu olabiliyor. Bunun için biraz zaman gerek, yani savaş sokağı gereği bu böyle. Fakat Kürt güçlerinin büyük bir başarı elde ettiğini söyleyebiliriz. Hem peşmergenin hem de Amerikan hava saldırılarının büyük bir etkisi oldu bunda. Dünyayı hedef alan terör örgütü gün be gün Kobanê’de kırılmaya uğruyor. Eğer dünya ülkelerinin yardımı ve hava saldırıları böyle devam ederse IŞİD tamamen çekilir, hem Kürdistan’ın batısında, hem de güneyinde yenilgiye uğratılır.

Bir takım medyada peşmergenin beklenen etkiyi göstermediği seklinde yorumlar oldu. Siz peşmergenin YPG’ye desteğini nasıl değerlendiriyorsunuz?

Peşmergenin kullandığı ağır silahlar önemli bir rol oynuyor saldırılarda. IŞİD mevzilerini hedef alan peşmerge saldırıları ve ABD uçaklarının hava saldırıları da IŞİD’in ilerleyememesinde etkili çünkü YPG’nin silahları IŞİD’in karşısında hafif kalıyor.

Orada daha önceden mevcut olan ÖSO grupları vardı ve sonradan da Akidi’nin grubu geldi. Bu konuda neler söylemek istersiniz?

Fırat Volkanı adı altında savaşan gruplar, Tuwar al-Raqqa, Shams al-Shamal ve Jabhat al-Akrad yani Kürt Cephesi. Kobanê’ye saldırılar başladığından beri onlarca şehitleri ve onlarca yaralıları var. Yeni gelen ÖSO grubu YPG ile bir anlaşma sonucu geldi. Fakat herhangi bir etkisi yok. Yaklaşık 50 kişilik bir gruptu bu ve onlardan yaklaşık 15 kişi geri döndü. Kendi aralarındaki anlaşmazlıktan dolayı geri döndüler, YPG ile herhangi bir sorundan kaynaklı değil. Hala da savaşa girmiş değiller.

Eğer savaşa girmemişlerse neden hala oradalar?

Kobanê’ye geçip yardım etmek istediklerini belirtmişlerdi. Biz de bekliyoruz!

Biraz da YPG’nin rolünü değerlendirmenizi isteyeceğim sizden. YPG’nin rolü ve koalisyon ile birlikte yürüttüğü mücadeleyi nasıl değerlendiriyorsunuz?

Dünyayı tehdit eden bu tehlike için herkesten önce YPG dünyayı uyardı. YPG bundan bir yıl önce bir çağrıda bulundu ve Rojava’da Kürt olsun, Hıristiyan olsun, Arap olsun bütün bölgeleri korudu. IŞİD’in Suriye devrimine ve Ortadoğu’nun hepsine düşman olduğuna dikkat çekti. YPG, terör örgütü IŞİD ile savaşırken yüzlerce şehit verdi. YPG bugün IŞİD ile savaşta tüm dünyayı temsil ediyor çünkü IŞİD tehlikesi bütün dünyayı hedef alıyor.

YPG bugün uluslararası savaş kurallarına göre hareket ediyor. Mesela geçenlerde esir aldığı yaralı bir IŞİD emirini hastaneye götürdü ve tedavi etti. Elindeki esirleri öldürmüyor, yani bir uluslararası devlet ordusu gibi hareket ediyor. YPG kendi halkını teröre karşı savunuyor, kimseye saldırmış değil. YPG’de Kürtler, Süryaniler, Araplar ve Türkmenler var, son zamanlarda Avrupa’dan katılanlar oldu. Sadece şimdi değil, bir yıldan beridir büyük başarılar elde ediyor YPG.

1 Kasım’da bütün dünya Kobanê için ayağa kalktı. Kobanê’de yaşayan bir sivil olarak, yalnız olmadığınızı bilmek nasıl bir his yarattı sizde?

Bu YPG ve Kobanê’deki sivil halk için çok önemli bir şeydi. Kobanê bütün dünya için önemli bir vazife üstlenmiş durumda çünkü. IŞİD bütün dünyayı hedef alan bir örgüt ve YPG bütün dünya için, kendi halkı için mücadele ediyor. YPG, peşmerge, Fırat Volkanı ve hava saldırılarının ortak mücadelesi ile de IŞİD’in bölgemizden tamamen çıkarılacağına inanıyoruz.

Prominent Journalist Zara Misto Analyses the Situation in Kobane

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Zara Misto is prominent journalist and Chief Editor of http://www.Welati.net who has been in Kobane since ISIS attacks against the city. We have discussed the situation in Kobane and balance of war between YPG and ISIS.

Mr. Misto, what is the latest situation in Kobane? What is taking place in war front, what is the situation of the air strikes?

As you know the clashes have been going on for over two months with no respite. In the past week, there were very intense fights took place, and many ISIS militants were killed in these clashes. Of course Kurdish forces also had martyrs.  After the clashes on the eastern front, in Sukul Hal and industrial region and regions near Asayish, the Kurdish forces made progress and got a few new points under its control. These gains were partially made possible by peshmergas’ attacks with cannons on positions under ISIS’s control.

Last week an ISIS tank was destroyed in an operation carried by the YPG forces in south of Kobane. American warplanes have been striking ISIS’s positions in eastern and western fronts when needed. We can say that ISIS has not been able to move forward. To the contrary, the Kurdish forces are moving forward, despite continuous support that is flowing to the ISIS from Manbij and Raqqa. However, the fact that YPG forces now control some important ISIS supply routes provides a significant advantage for the Kurds.  I can tell you that ISIS is suffering a great loss of morale, while Kurdish forces are making important gains.

You say the morale of the YPG, Peshmerga and the FSA are high, and ISIS is suffering a great loss of morale. But somehow a desired progress is lacking, isn’t it?

25-30 % of Kobane is in the hands of the ISIS. They exercise control over, Kaniya Ereban and Miqtela regions in the east, and over the 48th Street in south. The strategic attacks of the Kurdish forces cost ISIS great losses, hundreds of them got killed, they have thousands of wounded. Of course Kurds also have some 200 losses and wounded. This symbolizes a great resistance. The latest tactic of the YPG was based on –rather than gaining new grounds- to wait for their attack and kill as many of them as possible. This tactic has worked successfully. The more ISIS attacked, the more they suffered casualties. As you can see, the reason why there has not been a noticeable pull-back [by ISIS] is that there is a street by street fight in the city. As in the case of Aleppo, in all Syrian cities the same thing is taking place.

ISIS was planning to quickly take control of the Kobane city which it besieged from three sides and attacked with cannons and tanks. The fact that it has failed to establish control over the city yet, is truly a great success of the YPG. As I have stated, Kurdish forces have wrested a few new points from ISIS. I want to add that ISIS wanted to advance by means of suicide bombing and other savage methods, but that failed too due to YPG’s taking effective precautions against such attacks.

Public opinion ties gain to taking control of a new place. However you say that the real deal is to inflict losses on ISIS. That is the YPG implements hit- and-run tactics, did I understand it correctly?

Yes, exactly! Hit and run tactics are being implemented by YPG. With these tactics, we inflicted heavy casualties on ISIS and took control of new places from them.

Yet, I want to add a point here: some places that ISIS withdraws from carry the danger of being booby-trapped or ambushed. To clear things, require time, this is the rule of street fight.

yoj training

Nevertheless, we can say that Kurdish forces have been greatly successful. Both the peshmerga and the US airstrikes had a great impact on this. The terrorist organization ISIS that targeted the world is breaking down in Kobane day by day. If the aid and airstrikes of world countries continue in this manner, ISIS will pull back completely; it will suffer a great defeat in both Western and Southern of Kurdistan [Syrian and Iraqi Kurdistan].

Some in the international media write that peshmerga forces failed to display a positive or expected impact. How do you evaluate the support that peshmerga forces provide to the YPG?

The heavy weapons that peshmergas use play an important role in our attacks. ISIS cannot advance due to these strikes that target ISIS positions. Take away the US airstrikes and the recent peshmerga involvement; it would have been much harder to defend Kobane as YPG had very light weapons against the ISIS.

There were some Free Syrian Army (FSA) groups under the name of ‘Euphrates’ Volcano’ before and another FSA group under Abdul Jabbar Akidi came in later on. The arrival of latter created a huge ruckus. What would you say in this regard?

Groups that are fighting under the name of ‘Euphrates’ Volcano’ are Tuwar al-Raqqa, Shams al-Shamal and Jabhat al-Akrad. Ever since the attacks on Kobane started, these groups suffered tens of martyrs and wounded. The newly arrived FSA group of Akidi came in as a result of some external powers. YPG agreed on their arrival but they have no impact at all. They were about 50 people and approximately 15 of them went back. They went back due to disagreements among themselves, not due to any reason relating to the YPG. Those who remained have not joined in battle yet.

If they have not joined the battle, why are they there?

They said they wanted to enter Kobane and help. We are still waiting to see!

I wanted you to evaluate the role of the YPG a bit. While two months have passed since the siege of Kobane, how would you evaluate YPG’s role and the struggle it pursues with coalition forces in this war against the ISIS?

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The YPG was first to draw world’s attention to this ISIS danger that now threatens everybody. A year ago, the YPG made this call and in Rojava and other regions has protected the Kurdish, Christian and Arab population. We drew the attention to the fact that ISIS was the enemy of the revolution in Syria and a threat to the entire Middle East. The YPG suffered hundreds of losses in its fight against the ISIS. We can say that today the YPG represents the whole world, because the ISIS threatens the entire world. While couple of months ago only experts knew its name, today it is known world-wide and YPG is becoming a brand name for the Kurds.

The YPG pursues the war within the rules of the international law. For example, it captured a wounded emir (prince) of ISIS and took him to the hospital for treatment. We do not kill the war captives. That is we behave like the army of an international state. The YPG is defending its people, it did not attack anyone. Kurds, Syriacs, Arabs and Turkomans make up the ranks of the YPG, and lately, fighters have joined us from America and Europe. Not only now, but for a year now the YPG is gaining success.

On November 1st, there were demonstrations for Kobane world over. How did this affect you as a civilian, knowing that you were not alone and Kobane was not forgotten?

This was a very important development for the YPG and civilians in Kobane. That is because Kobane has shouldered an important duty for the entire world. ISIS is targeting the entire world and the YPG as an organization is struggling for her people and for the entire world because ISIS is a threat for entire globe. With the collaboration of the YPG, the peshmerga and Euphrates’ Volcano and the American airstrikes, we believe that we will rout the ISIS from the entirety of our region.

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For my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

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Thanks for Burhan Elturan for translating this interview into English

In Day 50, A Synopsis of the Situation in Kobane

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Mutlu Civiroglu https://twitter.com/mutludc

According to military, political and civilian sources in Kobane, in the day 50 of the resistance,  YPG has been gaining a momentum after successfully repelling strong ISIS attacks in eastern front which aimed at seizing the border crossing. Despite excessive man power and close combat in eastern front, YPG forces did not allow ISIS to advance.

With recent offensive in eastern front, ISIS hoped to seize the border gate to Turkey to totally suffocate the city and force YPG to surrender. Senior YPG sources report ISIS resorted to more than 20 car bombs in recent days, and all of these attacks were thwarted successfully with only some light YPG injuries.

One other reason for the recent ISIS attack on east was to prevent arrival of the Iraqi Kurdish peshmergas and heavy weaponry they brought along. As of November 3, the situation in eastern front is stable and ISIS members were further driven out from the border area. Kobane sources report that the failure of recent ISIS push caused demoralization of ISIS, and killing of 3 princes in last 48 further even worsened the situation on the ground.

On Sunday night clashes continued in East and South with some YPG advance reported. In Western front Kurdish peshermergas first time actively involved in a major assault. In this front YPG, “Euphrates Volcano” and Peshmerga forces carry out attack against ISIS positions in Abrus, Albalur and Minaz villages.

YPG Kobane

One other note is that US led coalition airstrikes have been playing a major role in destroying heavy ISIS weaponry which caused serious damages and destroyed many houses in the city. Sources in Kobane add that ISIS shelling decreased thanks to successful airstrikes.

However, it is still too early to conclude that the danger is over and ISIS is defeated. It is not secret that ISIS has made Kobane a matter of honor and will not give up easily. Therefore, despite recent major setbacks, ISIS forces in Kobane still receive reinforcements from Raqqa and surrounding cities, and some field commanders were replaced with new ones.

It is also reported that the arrival of peshmergas has brought a positive atmosphere for the Kurds and considerably lifted the spirit of YPG fighters on the frontline as well as the civilians in the city.

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If you want my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

EU Countries Agree to Arm Kurdish Forces in Iraq

EU ministers agreed today to back the arming of beleaguered Iraqi Kurd fighters by key member states, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said after three hours of talks. One diplomat said the agreement was “strong and sends the desired political message.” VoR’s Brendan Cole has more.

In the strongest statement of British support for the Iraqi Kurds yet, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said today that the UK would consider any request for British arms from Kurdish forces. Downing Street said no such request has yet been made.

It comes as European Union ministers agreed to helping arm Iraq’s Kurds to halt the relentless advance by Islamic State (IS, or ISIS) militants.

The United States and France have already begun to supply weapons to the Kurds and the French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius criticised a lack of action by the West.

He said: “The objective is to rebalance the fight, because the terrorists have highly sophisticated weapons that they took from Iraqi forces, and these are weapons of US origin. And so we don’t want to wash our hands of this we want to help the Kurds, the Iraqis, to avoid massacres.”

Amid warnings of a genocide, several European countries as well as the United States have dropped aid to the imperiled Yazidi population which is being targeted by the IS militants.

US President Barack Obama said the US had broken the siege on Mount Sinjar and saved many lives.

Mr Obama said: “The bottom line is the situation on the mountain has greatly improved and Americans should be very proud of our efforts. Because of the skill and professionalism of our military and the generosity of our people, we broke the ISIL siege of Mount Sinjar, we helped vulnerable people reach safety and we helped save many innocent lives.” 

Amid the debate for arming Kurds fighting in Iraq came support from all around the world.

Jabar Hassan is director of the Iraqi Association in London and he believes that arms would be welcomed.

He told VoR: “It does enable the Kurdish forces that can be depended on. What sort of weapons they will get I don’t know, it seems they are in desperate need of air cover and light tanks to defend themselves.”

But there is doubt as to whether simply arming Kurdish forces would be enough to stop ISIS.

Shoshank Joshi is a research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute. He told VoR: “Depending on the nature of the support the Kurds, receive it could upset the balance between Kirbil and Baghdad.”

“Mission creep is part of the mission”

The West claims it would not contribute to boots on the ground but already there are more than 1,000 US military personnel deployed to Iraq.

But the ability of the West to withdraw from Iraq is of course key.

Joshi said: “To some extent, mission creep is part of the mission. The US has said we are not going to step in and save Iraq until there is political reform. We are now seeing that more inclusive government taking place before our eyes.”

Hopes have grown for a more inclusive Iraqi government after the Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki resignedand conceded power to Haider al Abadi.

Washington-based Kurdish affairs analyst Mutlu Civiroglu told VoR: “I am not optimistic, the problem was not Maliki, the problem is one of democracy. The picture is more serious, it is a culture of democracy.”

The Peshmerga fighters currently used dated Soviet weapons and would welcome an influx of hardware and expertise from the west.

Its long term goal however – in addition to seeing off the threat of the Islamic State – could be seen as a desire to strengthen its resources for an independent Kurdistan.

Mutlu Civiroglu told VoR: “The Kurds are trying to create a joint front. As far as Kurdish independence is concerned, Kurds want it, it is no secret, they have the right to demand an independent state. They fear that the Iraqi state is not capable of protecting their interests.”

The offensive by the self-styled Islamic State, has drived an estimated 1.2 million Iraqis from their homes.

The UN has declared the situation in the country a “level three emergency”, its highest level of humanitarian crisis.

(AFP, VoR) 
Read more: http://voiceofrussia.com/uk/news/2014_08_15/Britain-ready-to-supply-Kurds-with-arms-8256/

President Obama’s Full Statement on the Iraq Crisis

President ObamaGood evening. Today I authorized two operations in Iraq — targeted airstrikes to protect our American personnel, and a humanitarian effort to help save thousands of Iraqi civilians who are trapped on a mountain without food and water and facing almost certain death. Let me explain the actions we’re taking and why.

First, I said in June — as the terrorist group ISIL began an advance across Iraq — that the United States would be prepared to take targeted military action in Iraq if and when we determined that the situation required it. In recent days, these terrorists have continued to move across Iraq, and have neared the city of Erbil, where American diplomats and civilians serve at our consulate and American military personnel advise Iraqi forces.

To stop the advance on Erbil, I’ve directed our military to take targeted strikes against ISIL terrorist convoys should they move toward the city. We intend to stay vigilant, and take action if these terrorist forces threaten our personnel or facilities anywhere in Iraq, including our consulate in Erbil and our embassy in Baghdad. We’re also providing urgent assistance to Iraqi government and Kurdish forces so they can more effectively wage the fight against ISIL.

Second, at the request of the Iraqi government — we’ve begun operations to help save Iraqi civilians stranded on the mountain. As ISIL has marched across Iraq, it has waged a ruthless campaign against innocent Iraqis. And these terrorists have been especially barbaric towards religious minorities, including Christian and Yezidis, a small and ancient religious sect. Countless Iraqis have been displaced. And chilling reports describe ISIL militants rounding up families, conducting mass executions, and enslaving Yezidi women.

In recent days, Yezidi women, men and children from the area of Sinjar have fled for their lives. And thousands — perhaps tens of thousands — are now hiding high up on the mountain, with little but the clothes on their backs. They’re without food, they’re without water. People are starving. And children are dying of thirst. Meanwhile, ISIL forces below have called for the systematic destruction of the entire Yezidi people, which would constitute genocide. So these innocent families are faced with a horrible choice: descend the mountain and be slaughtered, or stay and slowly die of thirst and hunger.

I’ve said before, the United States cannot and should not intervene every time there’s a crisis in the world. So let me be clear about why we must act, and act now. When we face a situation like we do on that mountain — with innocent people facing the prospect of violence on a horrific scale, when we have a mandate to help — in this case, a request from the Iraqi government — and when we have the unique capabilities to help avert a massacre, then I believe the United States of America cannot turn a blind eye. We can act, carefully and responsibly, to prevent a potential act of genocide. That’s what we’re doing on that mountain.

I’ve, therefore, authorized targeted airstrikes, if necessary, to help forces in Iraq as they fight to break the siege of Mount Sinjar and protect the civilians trapped there. Already, American aircraft have begun conducting humanitarian airdrops of food and water to help these desperate men, women and children survive. Earlier this week, one Iraqi in the area cried to the world, “There is no one coming to help.” Well today, America is coming to help. We’re also consulting with other countries — and the United Nations — who have called for action to address this humanitarian crisis.

I know that many of you are rightly concerned about any American military action in Iraq, even limited strikes like these. I understand that. I ran for this office in part to end our war in Iraq and welcome our troops home, and that’s what we’ve done. As Commander-in-Chief, I will not allow the United States to be dragged into fighting another war in Iraq. And so even as we support Iraqis as they take the fight to these terrorists, American combat troops will not be returning to fight in Iraq, because there’s no American military solution to the larger crisis in Iraq. The only lasting solution is reconciliation among Iraqi communities and stronger Iraqi security forces.

However, we can and should support moderate forces who can bring stability to Iraq. So even as we carry out these two missions, we will continue to pursue a broader strategy that empowers Iraqis to confront this crisis. Iraqi leaders need to come together and forge a new government that represents the legitimate interests of all Iraqis, and that can fight back against the threats like ISIL. Iraqis have named a new President, a new Speaker of Parliament, and are seeking consensus on a new Prime Minister. This is the progress that needs to continue in order to reverse the momentum of the terrorists who prey on Iraq’s divisions.

Once Iraq has a new government, the United States will work with it and other countries in the region to provide increased support to deal with this humanitarian crisis and counterterrorism challenge. None of Iraq’s neighbors have an interest in this terrible suffering or instability.

And so we’ll continue to work with our friends and allies to help refugees get the shelter and food and water they so desperately need, and to help Iraqis push back against ISIL. The several hundred American advisors that I ordered to Iraq will continue to assess what more we can do to help train, advise and support Iraqi forces going forward. And just as I consulted Congress on the decisions I made today, we will continue to do so going forward.

My fellow Americans, the world is confronted by many challenges. And while America has never been able to right every wrong, America has made the world a more secure and prosperous place. And our leadership is necessary to underwrite the global security and prosperity that our children and our grandchildren will depend upon. We do so by adhering to a set of core principles. We do whatever is necessary to protect our people. We support our allies when they’re in danger. We lead coalitions of countries to uphold international norms. And we strive to stay true to the fundamental values — the desire to live with basic freedom and dignity — that is common to human beings wherever they are. That’s why people all over the world look to the United States of America to lead. And that’s why we do it.

So let me close by assuring you that there is no decision that I take more seriously than the use of military force. Over the last several years, we have brought the vast majority of our troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan. And I’ve been careful to resist calls to turn time and again to our military, because America has other tools in our arsenal than our military. We can also lead with the power of our diplomacy, our economy, and our ideals.

But when the lives of American citizens are at risk, we will take action. That’s my responsibility as Commander-in-Chief. And when many thousands of innocent civilians are faced with the danger of being wiped out, and we have the capacity to do something about it, we will take action. That is our responsibility as Americans. That’s a hallmark of American leadership. That’s who we are.

So tonight, we give thanks to our men and women in uniform — especially our brave pilots and crews over Iraq who are protecting our fellow Americans and saving the lives of so many men, women and children that they will never meet. They represent American leadership at its best. As a nation, we should be proud of them, and of our country’s enduring commitment to uphold our own security and the dignity of our fellow human beings.

God bless our Armed Forces, and God bless the United States of America.

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President Obama’s Statement on Iraq

ISIS Ultimatum to Yezidi People: Convert or Be Killed

Yezidi Civilians
Iraqi Kurdistan is the northern part of Iraq and the most stable area, where minorities are protected and women play a high role in society.
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Click for the brief video of TakePart Live show:
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Yezidi Civilians1
ISIS invaded Shinjar to target non-Muslim Kurds. Kurdish women have been raped, murdered, and sold as sex slaves. ISIS refers to them as infidels, with the option to convert to Islam or be killed.
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Kurds have only basic weapons to protect themselves, but ISIS uses American weapons to kill Kurds.
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Original link: https://www.takepart.com/video/2014/08/06/isis-ultimatum-kurdish-women-convert-or-be-killed

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Yezidi Exodus from Shingal after ISIS Attacks

Ezidis_Flee

 

 

 

 

 

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This Yezidi man says they crossed into Syria after YPG forces opened a safe passage from them, and then came to Iraq again. He also says ISIS took some Yezidi women along and they do not know what happened to them!

 August 4, 2014

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On Tuesday Yezidi member of Iraqi Parliament Viyan Dakhil spoke in parliament about the tragedy of Yezidi community.

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