Guerilla Fighters of Kurdistan


“Even though the PKK is considered a terrorist organization by the United States, and is on the same list as ISIS, ironically here in Makhmour they’re supported by Coalition airstrikes…”

Guerilla Fighters of Kurdistan2

Remember the images of the “Kurdish warrior women” that were so popular in social media late in 2014 and early 2015 when ISIS and Syria were beginning to dominate the news cycle?  One New York photographer decided to visit Iraq and Syria to see for himself just what things were like with the Guerilla Fighters of Kurdistan — who, he says, believe warriors should be well-read intellectuals.


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Watch this video. Take half an hour to take a look at some ground truth (at least one man’s interpretation of it). It’s damn sure worth your time (see “chapter list” below) and the photography is just fucking brilliant.

“Portrait photography has a way of humanizing even the most distant of situations.”

Guerilla Fighters of Kurdistan3

Guerilla Fighters of Kurdistan


If you’re interested, you can read the whole story right here.

00:00 – Intro, photographer departs Yew York City

01:31 – Preparation in Sulaymaniyah, Iraqi Kurdistan

02:15 – PKK Guerrillas in Makhmour

05:41 – Crossing the border into Syria, YPG/J Guerrillas in Rojava

07:19 – Interview with YPJ members

09:07 – Daily life on a YPG/J base and photoshoot

10:13 – Clash in Tel Tamer, dead ISIS fighters

12:38 – Interview with American YPG Fighter “Fat Jack” in Tel Tamer

13:44 – Tel Hamis liberation, guerrillas living in abandoned ISIS base

16:38 – Urban exploration of abandoned ISIS base

20:28 – Overview of humanitarian crisis on Sinjar mountain

23:10 – ISIS suicide VBIED attack inside the besieged city of Sinjar

25:14 – Funeral of YBŞ guerrilla fighter in Sinjar

26:23 – Yezidi refugees and Shingal Resistance Unit

28:37 – Outro and closing thoughts

29:19 – Funeral of British YPG soldier Konstandinos Erik Scurfield

30:38 – Credits


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