Bakur

“Bakur” is Kurdish for “North”. It refers to the land in the North of Kurdistan (the land where Kurds live), in the eastern part of Turkey, particularly the southeast.

The Turkish state was founded in 1923, at the fall of the Ottoman Empire, and a system of Turkish cultural and language assimilation was installed, known as ‘Turkification’. Kurdish and other languages were forbidden. Names of rivers, mountains, villages, cities and other places were changed to Turkish, and naming children anything other than Turkish names was also forbidden, as was education, books, etc in such languages.

The Kurdish movement was founded in opposition to this forced assimilation, in favour of Kurdish and other minority cultural rights.

Social Contract of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria

Here you can read the translation to English of the social contract published in the Vladimir Van Wildenburg blog. You can download the French translation, the German translation, the Spanish translation. Preamble We, peoples of Rojava-northern Syria, including Kurds, Arabs, Syriacs, Assyrians, Turkmen, Armenians, Chechens, Circassians, Muslims, Christians, Yezidis, and the different doctrines and sects, recognize that the nation-state has made Kurdistan,

The Internal System of the Communes in Rojava

At present, much policy debate is focusing on whether the U.S. should retain troops in the areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northern and eastern Syria, as President Trump has made clear his wishes for troops to be pulled out in the near or medium-term. If the U.S. is going to stay in

The Co-operative Contract of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria

A – Definition and Principles The co-operative is a social organisation that does not seek profit, but the fulfilment of the basic needs of society, based on collective work, sharing, solidarity and self-governance. The co-operatives are basic moral-political pillars of the restructuring of society on a democratic foundation. The co-operatives do not limit themselves to
Rojava, Syria, Kurdistan

Introduction to the Political and Social Structures of Democratic Autonomy in Rojava

What goes on in Syrian Kurdistan cannot be reduced to the war against ISIS, and in order to understand the events in Rojava, one should look into the newly established institutions which under the title of the Movement for a Democratic Society (KCK, called TEV-DEM in Rojava) are organizing all the events and fields in Rojava. The lack of research

Women’s co-operatives in Rojava

The following article is based on my trip to Rojava in March 2016 where I interviewed Delal Afrin, Head of the Women’s Economic Committee of Kongira Star [Kongreya Star] (a women’s umbrella organisation, previously known as Yekitiya Star) and Hediye Yusuf, Co-President of Cizire Canton (now co-president of the Democratic Federation in Rojava and North

Bookchin, Öcalan, and the Dialectics of Democracy

When Bookchin died in July 2006, the PKK assembly saluted “one of the greatest social scientists of the 20th century.” He “introduced us to the thought of social ecology” and “helped to develop socialist theory in order for it to advance on a firmer basis.” He showed how to make a new democratic system into a reality. “He has proposed the concept of confederalism,” a model which we believe is creative and realizable.” The assembly continued: Bookchin’s “thesis on the state, power, and hierarchy will be implemented and realized through our struggle . . . We will put this promise into practice this as the first society that establishes a tangible democratic confederalism.”

The New PKK: unleashing a social revolution in Kurdistan

For Öcalan, democratic confederalism means a “democratic, ecological, gender-liberated society,” or simply “democracy without the state.” He explicitly contrasts “capitalist modernity” with “democratic modernity,” wherein the formers’ “three basic elements: capitalism, the nation-state, and industrialism” are replaced with a “democratic nation, communal economy, and ecological industry.” This entails “three projects: one for the democratic republic, one for democratic-confederalism and one for democratic autonomy.”