By JINWAR COUNCIL
Jinwar is a woman-only village in North and East Syria.
There are two rivers here in this region that surround the earth, in its different tones — brown, red, violet. It is the witness of a millenary culture of diversity, of richness, of living relationships, between all people, and between nature and humanity. Here a culture of appreciation, respect, care, preservation, and creation has been born. The core of that culture, which was shaped by women, is the continuation of life.
Part of this culture is the art of spinning and weaving, whose students and teachers were also women.
Women spun the individual threads and intertwined them with each other so that a fabric was created. When the individual threads were closely interwoven, colorful patterns were created, which gave the fabric its specificity. No thread could be detached without destroying the whole fabric. And each thread provided support for the others.
Those rivers whose waters gave us life, on whose banks we scattered seeds and on whose plains we wove are nowadays being dried up by those who, instead of a culture of life, want to implement a system of destruction, exploitation and violence by force.
Turkey and its allied forces are destroying the places, the valleys and banks, the hills and caves of our millennia-old culture.
It is they who are attacking our villages, towns, and communities where we have a long history of living together and sharing.
They who annihilate our existence as women, as children, as a society and nature itself.
Those who systematically attack and kill us as women, such as our friends Saada-al -Hermas, Hind al-Khedr, Zehra Berkel, Hebûn Xelîl, and Dayîka Emine, because we organize together to fight for a dignified and free life.
“We are not as women as we used to be as women. We have understood the philosophy of Rêber Apo and we live according to this philosophy. No one should forget that we are women, that we existed, that we exist and that we will exist. Women are finally not just a broken tree, women are spreading the revolution.” — Yade Sûat
We have learned our history, of which we are the inheritors. We have followed the traces of that revolution through the last five millennia. From the fertile banks of the Tigris, to the mother goddess Inanna, from Gire çaxil to Çilxanê in Afrîn. From the traditions of agriculture, spinning, weaving and milling, from Newroz to Akito New Year and from the stories of our grandmothers — to Jinwar today.
Here we continue to spin and weave together the threads that have been passed from hand to hand through the millennia. Here in Jinwar, we make the culture of women civilizations visible and alive through our common living together.
On the occasion of International Women’s Struggle Day and the anniversary of the opening of Şîfajin Health and Healing Center on March 4, we are invited to celebrate in Jinwar.
On this day we remember all those women who have spread the values of the revolution and defended them with their lives.
Our friend Hevrîn Xelef is one of those women who stood up. As a young woman, she was committed to building an economy of solidarity and ecology in Rojava. As co-founder and general secretary of the Future Syria Party (Partiya Sûriya Pêşerojê) she has worked with courage and determination together with women of all cultures and religions in Syria for a livable future, for democratic self-government, and for a life in freedom and dignity. And it was for this very reason that she was targeted for assassination by Turkish mercenaries at the start of Turkey’s war of occupation in October 2019.
The murder of Hevrîn Xelef, just like other murders of Kurdish and Arab women who organize in the women’s movement and the construction of a democratic society, was an attack on all of us. In contrast, in the days of action on March 8, 2021, thousands of women have come together in all the cities and villages of Rojava, everywhere in North and East Syria, to demonstrate together against these attacks.The determination of many women to defend, continue and expand the women’s revolution in Rojava, we also experience in Jinwar. The fact that we could welcome guests from the Future Syria Party and the mother of Hevrîn Xelef, Yade Sûat, to our celebration this year, has a great meaning for us. We were very touched by her words:
“This celebration is not only a celebration for women’s struggle, this celebration is a celebration for peace and sisterhood and a celebration for equality. At the beginning, we congratulate on this day Rêber Apo, all the Şehits of the revolution and all the women who stood up with this philosophy.” — Yade Sûat
Jinwar itself has grown out of this uprising of women and continues to grow every day through every story shared, every effort shared, every question shared, every game and song shared.
Every day in Jinwar is a day for peace, for a respectful, dignified and equal life for us as women, for us as children and for us as a society.
The Şîfajin Health Clinic, which opened a year ago, has become a fundamental part of Jinwar. As wise mothers and young women, we work together as women of different generations to develop alternative approaches to healing and health.
It is a place where women meet, share, work together, empower and support each other, educate and develop. In our daily work we could experience that this community strengthens us all and is in itself an important remedy for many pains.
Jemila, as part of the team of women, made the following statement on the anniversary:
“In the Şîfajin many women have given their effort, mothers, young women and women from different countries, until today more than 2000 women have been treated. Many of them had gone to many doctors, but did not find a cure, did not find a solution to their problem. But here in the Şîfajin they could find healing and strength for new deeds with the ways and means of natural medicine.
And so, from this experience, we as women in Jinwar developed the power of deeds for another project that we officially announce on March 8: Teşîrês.
Teşîrês is a project for a long time for the production of wool products, with which we want to develop the skills of women in handicrafts and revive the regional wool culture to which also the common singing of songs and the telling of stories belong.
Our goal is to have 1,000 women from the surrounding villages participate in this project, regardless of their nationality.
Part of the project is to wash and dry the wool and then spin it into a thread. From this wool thread we want to make scarves, jackets, sweaters, gloves, socks, bags, and carpets.
Teşîres, as well as the results of SifaJin’s year-long work, are important and meaningful examples that show that despite assassination attempts, the ongoing war, and Erdogan’s further threats of occupation, we are determined to shape our future in a healthy and self-determined way. This determination unites women in northern and eastern Syria. In her speech, Yade Sûat also called on mothers in Turkey to stand up against Erdogan’s dictatorship with the same determination.
I am a woman and I will fight until all women can liberate themselves, until all women can fight.
I won’t leave my ground and will not deny my identity.
Finally, as a mother, I would like to call on the mothers in Turkey to unite with us and tell Erdogan: Enough!
We call upon all the women of the world to join us, to spin dreams of a life of solidarity, to weave a solid and colorful fabric of resistance, because every woman, every child, all people can contribute to new beginnings with their different stories, wealth of knowledge and experience.
With every woman we meet, we can broaden our horizons, our world becomes clearer, our relationships with children and also with society become more meaningful. Our thoughts grow together. Thus our life becomes good, right, and beautiful.
Jin Jiyan Azadî.”