National boundaries can be messy, temporary creatures. Towards the north of the Middle East, there is an ethnic group numbering over 25 million that spill over the borders of four nations, estranged by all of their governments. The fall of the Ottoman Empire nearly 100 years ago and subsequent divisions left the Kurdish people without a land to call their own – but the dream of a free and independent Kurdistan has never faded.
The current conflict between ISIS (or ISIL, or now often called Daesh – which is more derogatory) and the ruling regimes of Syria and Iraq holds lasting implications for the future of Kurdistan, and the Kurdish people (equipped with their own army) have thus far been very successful in driving the extremists from their land. The borders may yet shift again.
Music has been the glue that held Kurdistan together through a century of struggle. It’s high time to acknowledge the sublime sounds of hope that the Kurdish have conjured over this dark era. (Heck, Kurdistan even has a pop star). Let music light the way!