Zozan Çewlik: No attack will be able to stop us

The system of rule is based on the feeling of fear. Insurgents are guided by their passion for freedom and not by the feeling of surrender that arises from fear, said YJA Star Central Headquarters Commander Zozan Çewlik in an ANF interview.

Zozan Çewlik, a commander of the YJA Star Central Headquarters, talked in an ANF interview about the current invasion operation in the Medya Defense Zones by the Turkish state, the stance of the women's guerrilla troops and the importance of the areas under attack.

Did the YJA Star expect such a comprehensive attack on the Medya Defense Zones?

The year started with the victory of Gare in February. We have known that the Turkish state would push its extermination attacks on Abdullah Öcalan and our movement to a new level in order forget its defeat and have it forgotten. Already in the run-up to this development, a statement had been made at our Command Council meeting that a war of strategic and historical importance would take place in the Medya Defense Zones this year. Accordingly, the YJA Star prepared itself in every way to push forward the revolutionary people's war. In retrospect, we have seen that we were right. On the night of April 23-24, the anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, the occupation attack on the Metîna, Zap and Avaşîn regions began. The fact that this date was chosen sends a political message.

How was this occupation attack met?

The guerrilla launched the revolutionary offensives Bazên Zagrosê and Cenga Xabûrê, not only to counter the attacks and defend themselves, but to effectively hit the enemy and achieve explicit results. With the start of these offensives, our units have used tactics such as infiltration, assault, sniper and sabotage in a very creative way and have not let the occupation forces through.

And what methods is the Turkish army resorting to?

The army, in its distress in the face of guerrilla resistance, has once again resorted to dirty methods. Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar has spoken of a "very special technique" and ordered his soldiers to use chemical gas against the guerrillas to penetrate the tunnel system. Under the leadership of Serhat Giravî, a great resistance has taken place in the Mamreşo area; until the twelfth day, the enemy has been prevented from entering the tunnels. The enemy has seen that fear and death have been defeated in Kurdistan.

What do you mean by that?

Fear has been used as a method of disciplining and weakening the will for thousands of years. The system of domination is based on the feeling of fear. If you look closely, you can see that all insurgencies are based on courage. The courage of the insurgents does not come from their fearlessness, but is based on not surrendering to their fear. The insurgents are guided by their desire for freedom and not by the feeling of surrender that arises from fear. The history of humankind is characterized by the conflict between the feeling of fear and the resulting surrender and the courage not to surrender. The courageous insurgents are like a permanent point of light in human history. Regardless of the era, they represent a value for humanity.

Within this framework, have the Kurdish uprisings and struggles in history gone beyond overcoming fear?

After the founding of the Republic of Turkey, Turkish-Kurdish relations were characterized by the creation of fear on the one hand via the policy of denial and annihilation, and rebellion against this fear on the other. Until the emergence of the PKK, these rebellions mainly didn’t have ideological basis and merely showed courage. With the PKK, the mountains as a space of uprising have attained an ideological, political and military basis, thus continuity has been created. Above all, an ideological courage has been created in the mountains, which corresponds to the principle of a free life of free individuals. A will has been created that excludes surrender. Ideological courage is not like a transient trace in the sand; it is firmly anchored in hearts. A person with dignity does not surrender to a policy of genocide and fear. He does not betray his desire for freedom. The Turkish state can keep on trying to create fear with its dirty politics, machinations and psychological warfare, it will only create more courageous revolutionary and rebellious people. This is a dialectical truth. The Turkish policy has no chance of success against the sacrificial attitude of the Apoist movement.

What should be the attitude of the Kurdish people, including all sections of the population, towards the extermination attacks?

Today, everyone has to take a stand. Anyone who remains neutral will be swept away by developments. The current phase has a drastic character. The values brought forth by courageous fighters have become an ethical culture of life among the Kurdish people and Kurdish women. The danger of the politics of recent times starts exactly there. The basic ethical values are wanted to be turned into the opposite. People are wanted to be made to cling fearfully only to life, regardless of what their lives look like.

In the meantime, however, entire generations have grown up with the legendary stories of the guerrilla. No power can erase that from people's minds and hearts anymore. When fear spreads in the form of a horror, great courage and heroic resistance emerge in the process. Everyone should know this. A legendary heroic story emerges from every resistance. Every attack strengthens the determination to succeed, win and resist. The YJA Star is influenced by this tradition.

What special significance do the currently embattled regions have for the YJA Star?

These regions are the territory where our passionate desire for freedom has matured, where we have organized ourselves for the first time, where we can be ourselves, know ourselves and create ourselves anew. From Metîna to the foothills of Cilo, from Heftanîn to Zap, Avaşîn, Gare and Xakurke, seeds of freedom have been planted that have sprouted, grown and become stronger. These mountains are the soil in which the seeds of women's liberation have been planted. This is where our roots are. We will not allow ourselves to be cut off from our roots. As YJA Star, we are carrying out actions with creative methods against the enemy in this strategic war. These actions will be expanded and continued uninterruptedly.

Recently, more and more aerial actions are also taking place....

Our air defense forces, named after the fallen commander Delal Amed, represent a new tactical departure, striking the enemy from the air almost daily. Against the enemy's sophisticated technology, the limited technology employed by our forces is sufficient to strike fear into their hearts. The tactics of modern guerrilla warfare employ the brains, hearts, and subtlety of women. For us, however, it is not so much the technical means that count, but the conviction, the bond and the courage of our friends. No technique can be stronger and more invincible than the will of a person who feels connected to a truth and believes in it.

The KJK [Kurdistan Communities Union] launched a campaign last year to defend free life and society. To what extent does YJA Star participate in this?

What is taking place in Kurdistan today is not just a military operation. It is an occupation and a genocide, and thus at the same time a massacre of society and a feminicide. All the actions of the YJA Star against the occupiers are to contribute to the success of the campaign. The YJA Star is the most strategically important force fighting and will always fight against the destruction of society and feminicide. With this in mind, we consider ourselves responsible for the success of the campaign.

Will the attacks of the Turkish state continue and expand?

In the enemy's concept of annihilation against Abdullah Öcalan and our movement, the fact that we do not surrender plays a decisive role. It is against the concept of genocide and annihilation that our movement, with its guerrilla of democratic modernity, is offering the greatest resistance. For this reason, the attacks will go even more off track and continue throughout this year. Therefore, our people must raise their voices and make every place a battlefield. It is time to claim dignity. We must all together make Kurdistan the grave of fascism. The YJA Star commanders and fighters will fight with their passionate attachment to freedom and will not let the occupiers pass. No attack will be able to stop us and this time freedom will definitely win.