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Kurdish women in the Battle:[edit | edit source]

Kurdish women in the past[edit | edit source]

The history of Kurds in the Mesopotamia actually began during ancient times. They consider their ancestors to be the Medes which adopted the Zoroastrian religion. In this religion there is equality between women and men, promoting the equal participation between them in making decisions and also supporting women who can fully exercise their rights. The history of Medes has shown that women fought in the battle beside their men but a few female leaders were mentioned in the history such as Zrena.

Zrena was the first woman who led the army of the Median Empire.[1] She was the daughter of one of the most important Pir, Shailar. She studied Philosophy and Geometry and practiced with her bow and arrow. She was much more like her father in thinking and fighting. She followed in her father’s footsteps and became a Mariya.[2] After her father's death, she led the army successfully with the rest of the Mariyas. Her words encouraged the warriors (Sarbaz) in the war, one of the important quotes remaining until this generation to Sarbaz is "If the light shines behind me I could face the darkness even the light comes from a small candle". She never turned around while she was at the battle to know whether the rest of the army was with her or not. She asked Piran Congress to burn the left breast of the girls in their earlier age while she noticed that the Mariyas were struggling with their bow and arrow, but Piran Congress refused her request because they considered that as an anti-humanitarian act, although they knew from Magi’s prediction that the Median Empire would collapse one day.

The following of her quote were recorded in the manuscript which advised warriors:

In what do you fear! You are part of the nature whether you alive or die.
Do not let your feet to be proud while your sword defeated the enemies.
Do not fight for your personal benefit as sunlight gave your life.

Mir Xanzad[edit | edit source]

The second woman in Kurdish history is well known and called Mir Xanzad.[3] She was a sister of Mir Suliman who was a prince of Soran Emirate. After he was assassinated by Lashkri, who was one of the higher commander in the military, in 1590, Xanzad took over the reins of power and became princess of Soran Emirate. Lashkri with his army could not face Mir Xanzad and for that reason he went to Shangal. However, both armies could not face and attack their base. Mir Xanzad wrote a letter to him and stated that she could not manage the governor and take all the heritage of Soran Emirate should someone share power with her. She stated also that she could not find someone better than him to marry. When Lashkri received the letter he went to Harir with 100 knights. On the next day, he was handcuffed with his knights and executed.

Mir Xanzad ruled Soran Emirate for seven years and had an active role by building castles and roads and also reinforced the army. One of the most beautiful castles was known by her name. Xanzad Castle,[4] located about 20 km north of Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan region.

Hapsa Xani-Naqib[edit | edit source]

The third woman in Kurdish history was called Hapsa Xani-Naqib. She was a cousin of King Mahmmud. She was born in 1891 in Sulimani. She became a politician woman by participating in many activities in the Kurdish revolution and had a role in gaining women’s rights. She wrote a letter to the United Nations and asked for Kurdish rights when the Kurds were about to be squeezed by four countries; Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey. She supported the Kurdish revolution financially and physically during her life as we could see she supported Qazi Mahammad when established the Republic of Muhambad on 22 January 1946. She was a great women who died in 12/04/1953 while she had many projects on her mind to serve her nation.[5][6]

Fata Resh[edit | edit source]

Fata resh has commanded Kurdish tribal-units in the Ottoman-Russian wars against Russian Empire to protect the Caucasian front and the Crymea front.

Leyla Qasim and Margret[edit | edit source]

The role of Kurdish women in the battle is highlighted from the past to the present as we can see 1960th Leyla Qasim and Margret[7] were participating in the Kurdish revolution to the South of Kurdistan against the Iraqi regime.

From 1978, Kurdish women have been involved in original history. As we can see on a daily basis, many women to the (soils of Turkish Republic) are struggling beside men against the Turkish regime in order to get freedom for the Emperialist Forces. In the last decade, many Kurdish women played a huge role and led PKK militants, without any fear and gave their soul for their militant,human slayer unity Pınarcık Katliamı which opposing civilians including 16 children in Pınarcık province- and country, such as Zilan, Shilan, Beritan and Vian.

Bêrîtan[edit | edit source]

Gülnaz Karataş (Bêrîtan), also known as Beritan. She studied the science of Economics and English. She joined PKK with her fiancé in 1989. Later on, she was arrested by Turkish authorities. After she was released, she went to Guti Mountain to join the PKK army. In 1992 when the fighting started between PDK and PKK, she threw herself over a cliff when her ammunition ran out.

Vian[edit | edit source]

Laila Wali, also known as Vian Jaff, was born in Sulimani in 1981. She studied primary and secondary school in Sulimani and left school in order to join PKK to get women’s rights. She believed the only way to get freedom for humanity and specifically Kurdish rights was through PKK. Soon, she started her education through PKK and became one of the active women in that movement. Later on, she became a member of PCDK. She worked in PCDK’s media and started to write about Kurdish women. On the fourth conference of PCDK, she became a member of PJA(The party of Freedom Women). On 2 February 2006, she burnt herself for freedom and gave the message to the world that “There is no life without Ocalan”. She gave her soul, body, courage, bravery, words, pens, papers, etc., to Kurdish women.

Meaning[edit | edit source]

  • Zrena means the first raining in the autumn or the drizzle. People were praying for the first raining for their lands while they cultivated wheat and crops. For that reason the first raining was much sanctified as it mentioned in the Holy Avesta.[8]
  • Sarbaz is a warrior.[1]
  • Mariyadisambiguation needed is a female Sarbaz.[2]
  • Pir is the highest level in the Zoroastrian religion that could legislate, lead and decide for any new outcome.

The Role of Avesta in Median Empire/Véjeye Avéstaíya lenau Xaka Madaíya/ ڤێژه‌یا ئاڤێستایا له‌ناو خاکا مادایا It is a manuscript of one of the most important manuscript bundles which existed until the British invasion of Iraq after the First World War. This manuscript was of interest by British archaeologies because the history of the Iranian empire of the Medes and Persians were recorded and was passed down through the generations. This manuscript is likely uncovered by Zoroastrian families with the rest of the manuscript bundles and some pictures were taken by a Kurdish historian in 2005 before they disappeared again. Here are some pictures:

  • Shaliar was a title of minister at the time of Median Empire. Also during Median Empire, there was a Pir Shaliar who was a Pir and had a position as a minister in Median Empire. At the time of Median Empire there were many women acted as a Pir Shaliar because there was equality between men and women as they adopted the Zardasht religion. All the Pirs could become a Shaliar but not vice versa as we could find in many Shaliars such as Zrena, who was a daughter of Pir Shaliar then became a Shaliar of defence in Median Empire; although she studied Philosophy and the Zardasht religion, she remained as Shaliar, not as a Pir.

References and notes[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 manuscript: "The Role of Avesta in Median Empire"
  2. 2.0 2.1 Jalal Amin Bag: "Avesta", page 38, The Ministry of Education, 1999
  3. Muhammed Tofiq Wardi: "Xanzad and Lashkri", page 31, Baghdad
  4. http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2482/3550230426_e1a1bcd4ef.jpg
  5. http://www.pcdk.org/kurdi/page.php?sid=150
  6. http://www.xoshawistan.info/vb/showthread.php?t=589
  7. http://www.renesans.nu/articles.php?id=4286
  8. Mukriani: "Farhangi Kurdi", 1968

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