Kurdish Patriot Killed By ISIS Suicide Bombers

At a time of life that many American youths are protesting for free higher education and seeking “safe spaces” to hide from offensive words, 22 year old Kurdish freedom fighter Asia Ramazan Antar had already devoted three years of her young life to her people and their defense. Antar, a machine gunner since the age of 19, was killed when she reportedly tried to stop an attack by three Islamic State (Isis) suicide car bombers. Antar, dubbed “Kurdish Angelina Jolie” by the Western media for her good looks, had become the poster girl for the Syrian Kurdish Women’s Protection Units (YPJ) in the war-ravaged country. YPJ is the all-female brigade of the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Unit (YPG) — both of which are the armed wings of a Kurdish coalition that has taken de facto control over much of Syria’s predominantly Kurdish north, Rojava.

Antar was one among the female Kurdish fighters guarding the village of al-Yashli when the ISIS militants launched the attack. She stopped the cars being driven straight at the Kurdish frontline position, “She and her fellows blew up two of them but the last was very close to her when it exploded,” Commander Shirin Abdullah, YPJ spokeswoman, said.  She is said to have died immediately when the suicide car bombs exploded.

“The YPJ have been instrumental in the battle to take back control of Kobani from ISIS. These women fighters know that, if captured, they will be raped and killed; therefore they fight knowing that they must succeed in battle or become a suicide warrior to avoid being captured. The YPJ is also thought to be feared by ISIS, who believes that if a female kills them in battle, it will be a disgrace and dishonour, and will prohibit them from entering paradise.”

Asia Ramazan Antar

Asia Ramazan Antar was a 22 year-old high-ranking Kurdish soldier of the all-female division of People’s Protection Units (YPG)

While she became well known for her looks, Antar preferred being compared to Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie for her social work and for being caring towards people and not for her looks, according to Abdullah. Antar is said to have joined the YPJ forces in 2014 hoping to free Syrian women in her village from patriarchal domination. She was married and divorced within three months of her marriage and had secondary school level education when she joined the YPJ two years ago.
 “She always said that her battles against Daesh [Isis] were battles against the ugliness of their views and to build a better life,” Abdullah said. “She always said that the woman has her own cleverness and she doesn’t need to copy what a man does”. One among 10,000 women fighting the militants as part of the YPJ, Antar was often spotted with a Russian-made PKM machine gun on her shoulder and “she was skilled with it,” Abdullah added.
Antar was born in Qamishli, a city in north-eastern Syria on the border with Turkey and was recruited into all-female Kurdish military organisation the Women’s Protection Units in 2014, taking part in several campaigns against ISIS.