The Kurds - betrayed again

A note from the editor

Vanessa Baird

The Kurds and Covid-19

Usually there’s no discussion about it. The Big Story, the main theme of the magazine, is what goes on the cover.

But, in the midst of the current global pandemic, it seemed strange not to give greater prominence to our coverage of Covid-19.

Should that not be the cover story? The special report on the plight of the Kurds and their ongoing quest for freedom could still feature large inside the magazine.

But, as one colleague pointed out, isn’t that what always happens to the Kurds? Always bumped down the agenda, or off it entirely, by some other, greater concern?

It’s true too of many other issues today. So, while in this edition we are certainly giving the global pandemic special attention, including a thoughtful Long Read by Richard Swift and reports from Africa, Latin America and Asia, we are also featuring stories that are not being heard over the din of the crisis. It’s a delicate balance – and we may not have got it right, but trust that you will let us know if so. And, of course, the Kurds too are profoundly affected by the reality and politics of coronavirus, but without the comparative privileges and safety nets of nation-state structure and status.

Elsewhere in this edition, we interview South Sudanese artist James Aguer Garang about how he has turned his own personal trauma of war into art therapy classes across East Africa and chart the sad fall from grace of democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi.

Vanessa Baird for the New Internationalist co-operative.
www.newint.org

The big story

Get out! Young Kurds confront a Turkish military vehicle on patrol in northern Syria after Turkey’s invasion.

Get out! Young Kurds confront a Turkish military vehicle on patrol in northern Syria after Turkey’s invasion.

Photo: Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty

Betrayed again

Under the cover of Covid-19, Turkey is hammering the Kurds. Again. Should the world care? Vanessa Baird offers several good reasons why it should.

Buy this magazine




The Big Story

Action and Information

Action and Information

Links for campaigning and more reading on Kurdistan.

Buy this magazine

Kurdish Political Parties.Wikipedia.org

Who’s who and what do they stand for?

There are scores of different Kurdish political factions, parties and movements, some of which connect with each other, others that are radically and bitterly opposed. Here, in simple form, are the key players.

Buy this magazine

Kurds - The Facts

Kurds - The Facts

The Kurds – the fourth-biggest ethnic group in the Middle East – are described as ‘the largest nation without a state’. (Where accurate statistics are lacking, we have gone with ‘reasonable’ estimates.)

Buy this magazine

Women in Qamishlo, the de facto capital of Rojava, protest against a Turkish-Russian deal that threatens them and the gains of their revolution.Photo: Delil Souleiman/AFP/Getty

Unbowed

Turkey wants to undo the revolution in North and East Syria. But the women of Rojava are resisting, writes Dilar Dirik.

Buy this magazine

A shopping mall in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan, displays neoliberal modernity and ruling-elite spending habits.Photo: Michael Runkel/Alamy

A shot at statehood

Lorraine Mallinder gets inside the proto-petro-state of Iraqi Kurdistan.

Buy this magazine

Locals are still not allowed back to their neighbourhood in Sur, ravaged by the Turkish army and PKK militants in 2015, then flattened by bulldozers.Photo: Sertac Kayar/Reuters

Dreaming of Sur

Longing for a return to Turkish Kurdistan’s shattered city centre.

Buy this magazine

Smuggling is necessary but dangerous work for these Kurdish boys. Many are killed every year by Iranian border patrols.Photo: Rahman Hassani/Alamy

Shoot first

No mercy for Iran’s mountain smugglers.

Buy this magazine

The face of Abdullah Öcalan frequently appears on banners at pro-Kurdish demonstrations around the world, like this one in Berlin.Photo: Jan Scheunert/Zuma/Alamy

Mandela of the Middle East?

Abdullah Öcalan’s journey to democratic confederalism.

Buy this magazine

Why I joined

Western volunteers on why they fight for Rojava.

Buy this magazine

From left to right: Theresa Jusu, Marta Lado, Mohamed Camara, and Mamadu Baldeh.

First Ebola, then Covid-19

Hazel Healy re-connects with communities in Sierra Leone.

Buy this magazine

Forced from home by US airstrikes in the Lower Shabelle region, this girl tries to rest at a camp for internally displaced persons near Mogadishu, Somalia, March 2020.Photo: Feisal Omar/Reuters

Out of sight, out of mind

Husna Rizvi rounds up some of the lesser-known pandemic stories from around the world.

Buy this magazine

Back to work: garment workers in Dhaka, Bangladesh, after factories re-opened in May.Photo: Mohammad Ponir Hossain/Reuters

The trouble with normal is it always gets worse

A clamour to return to the status quo after Covid-19 would be bad news for people and the planet, argues Richard Swift. We may never get a better chance for a new normal.

Buy this magazine


Opinion

View from Brazil

View from Brazil

Leonardo Sakamoto on how the rich are responding to the pandemic.

Buy this magazine

View from India

View from India

Nilanjana Bhowmick on the deadly neglect of rural heartlands.

Buy this magazine

View from Africa

View from Africa

Nanjala Nyabola grapples with the challenge of misinformation and disinformation.

Buy this magazine


Currents

LGBTQI+ people have been scapegoated and put at risk during the Covid-19 pandemic.Photo: Nicolas Roses/ABACA/PA Images

LGBTQI+ backlash

LGBTQI+ people have been scapegoated and put at risk during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Buy this magazine

Illustration: Emma Peer

Introducing... Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Richard Swift introduces us to the head of the World Health Organization.

Buy this magazine

Thrown in jail

Thrown in jail

The fight to free Nigeria’s prisoners, report by Nosmot Gbadamosi.

Buy this magazine

A chance for joy: Ingoma Nshya are making their mark as the first female percussionists in Rwanda.Photo: Oscar Espinosa

Rwanda

Women unite through drumming

Buy this magazine

Amazon exposed

Amazon exposed

Report on the exploitation of the Amazon by Beatriz Miranda.

Buy this magazine

Bailiffs at the eviction of the Harvil Road HS2 protest camp where ancient woodlands are under threat.Photo: Phil Clarke Hill

Rude awakening

Report on the HS2 high-speed rail line by Fran Lambrick.

Buy this magazine

Broken bonds

Broken bonds

The World Bank's 'pandemic bonds' haven't delivered, reports Liam Taylor.

Buy this magazine

Reasons to be cheerful

Reasons to be cheerful

Sweet city; FGM outlawed; Ireland for Choctaw.

Buy this magazine


Regulars

Letters

Letters

Praise, blame and all points in between? Give us your feedback.

Read this article

Illustration: Sarah John

Letter from Johannesburg

Ways of belonging. Having travelled to the land of her birth as the coronavirus pandemic began to gather pace, Yewande Omotoso feels the tug of home.

Buy this magazine

Seriously?

Seriously?

Lil Miquela and the rise of the virtual celebrity.

Buy this magazine

Illustration: Emanuele Del Rosso

Open Window - Coronatrash

Cartoon by Emanuele Del Rosso (Italy).

Buy this magazine

A security guard protects a stationery shop on Fifth Avenue in Guatemala City; ‘No more violence against women, no more beatings, no more deaths, no more abuse’, reads a sign during the International Women’s Day march; Mayan women sell corn tortillas in Zone One of the capital; ‘Cucuruchos’ carry a float with the image of Christ through the historic centre during Guatemala’s world-famous Easter celebrations.All photos: Mira Galanova

Country profile: Guatemala

The photos, facts and politics of Guatemala

Buy this magazine

Cartoon History: The Wolf of Baghdad

Carol Isaacs conjures up her own lost heritage – that of the Jewish community in Iraq.

Buy this magazine

The debate: Sustainable Development Goals

The debate: Sustainable Development Goals

Could the UN Sustainable Development Goals deliver on their promises? Gary Rynhart and Jan Vandemoortele beg to differ.

Buy this magazine

Photo: Jalal Sepehr

Southern Exposure: Jalal Sepehr

Iranian photographer Jalal Sepehr poses a Persian carpet dilemma.

Buy this magazine

Photo: Pat Benic/UPI/Alamy

Hall of Infamy: Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi’s spectacular fall from human rights icon to genocide denier.

Buy this magazine

The Interview: Sarojini Nadimpally

The Interview: Sarojini Nadimpally

Indian public-health researcher and scientist Sarojini Nadimpally speaks to Amy Hall about the inequalities exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Buy this magazine

Illustration: Marc Roberts

Only Planet

Leadership, by Marc Roberts.

Buy this magazine

Where we would have been: Fridays for Future activists leave placards outside the Reichstag in Berlin, Germany, as an alternative climate protest.Photo: Kay Nietfeld/DPA/Alamy Live News

Temperature check

Aruna Chandrasekhar on how climate activism has kept going in a time of isolation.

Buy this magazine

Big Bad World

Big Bad World

Conspiracy... or logic, science and reason, by P J Polyp.

Buy this magazine

Agony Uncle

Agony Uncle

Ethical and political dilemmas abound these days. Seems like we’re all in need of a New Internationalist perspective. Enter stage: Agony Uncle.

Buy this magazine

What if…

What if…

Drug patents were scrapped? Husna Rizvi makes a vital suggestion.

Buy this magazine

The Puzzler

Crossword Puzzle, Association Words and Wordsearch

Buy this magazine


Film, Book & Music Reviews

Mixed Media: Books

Mixed Media: Books

Solved; Artemisia;Becoming Kim Jong-un; A Silent Fury

Buy this magazine

Mixed Media: Film

Mixed Media: Film

The Uncertain Kingdom; The Australian Dream; The Happy Family; Bicycle Thieves

Buy this magazine

Mixed Media: Music

Mixed Media: Music

De-formation: Piano Variations; From Isolation 3

Buy this magazine

Photo: Samir Bol

Spotlight: James Aguer Garang

James Aguer Garang talks to Jan-Peter Westad about art, trauma and healing.

Buy this magazine


Back